J and D's Corner

From the Letters Archive

To:    AV Press

Date: 03/2002

Re:    Send 'Em All to Cuba (aka: It Ain't About Money)


Background:  Following standard media practice, our local paper is always in the market for some item around which to create a "hard hitting expose series". 


A local high school rep went to Cuba with a group intent on getting an insight into Cuba's school system which, regardless of its political bias, manages to give Cuban kids an excellent general education on a miniscule budget.  The local paper devoted a huge amount of column space trying to whip this into a cause celebre (with limited success, as I recall).

The latest in your series of articles on the trip to Cuba by AVUHS District's Mary Loughridge caught my eye, partially because the subject was included as one of Warford's "Six Outrageous" items on the next page.

I would like to respectfully submit that AV Press is shooting itself in the foot on this particular item. There is a lesson of immense value to be learned from the Cuban school system, that being the fact that producing educated students is not primarily related to how much money you spend on the process.

The article was loaded with indirection in the form of political slurs on Fidel & Company. Forget that, politics isn't what it is about. What it's about is that Cuba instills better basic reading, writing, math and science skills than we do for a monetary outlay of probably less than one-tenth what we spend. If our educational establishment, politicians and the public at large could just learn that lesson, we'd be in fat city here.

I say send 'em all to Cuba, it could be money well spent.