Update from Congressman Gallego, 23rd District

By Congressman Pete Gallego —

This week, we commemorate American Education Week. Aristotle, the classic philosopher, once said: “Learning is an ornament in prosperity, a refuge in adversity, and a provision in old age.”

At one point or another, all of us will face at least two of the three challenges that Aristotle talked about.

Education is the best tool to get out of poverty, but who makes it possible? It's true that this is a shared responsibility, from parents and mentors to community leaders and business owners; however, teachers and educators bear the greatest responsibility.

In an increasingly competitive world, education gives our children the tools to thrive and our country the talent to lead. Those who are doing the most to help America's youth realize their full potential must be recognized. After all, it has long been said that credit should be given where it is due.

I owe a lot to my teachers. Sister Josephine, Mrs. Bierschwale, Mrs. Scudday, Mrs. Uranga, Mrs. Valenzuela, Mrs. Kay and many more too numerous to mention. Starting in my very early years and going all the way through law school, teachers have guided me on the road of life.

All of us can find at least one teacher who helped put us on the path we followed the rest of our lives, from scribbling our spelling words to conducting our first science experiment to sophisticated theories to practical business tips.

An education is a ticket into the middle class, and it should be available to everyone willing to work for it. A junior college or a university education may not be for everyone, but it should be within reach of all of those who want it. Education is the great equalizer – and it should never be reserved alone for the wealthy.

American Education Week offers a chance to publicly express our gratitude to educators across our Nation, to those who kindle the fire of knowledge in young minds. If you can read this, thank a teacher, and let's commit to giving every young American the opportunities a world-class education affords.