Saturday, November 05, 2016

After the Election Work to Do

The election is Tuesday. I hope everyone votes. I also hope that the national winner is Hillary Clinton. I hope that radical Senators and Congressmen in every state get replaced with those who want to work for a country that is a real example to the world of what is needed to create hope, opportunity and a secure, healthy future for ALL of its citizens.  

However, I'm not naive enough to believe this will happen.  Clinton may not win. Not sure how I'll accept that.

Yet, regardless of who wins, it's always been the responsibility of individuals and groups in places across the country to come together and innovate solutions to complex problems.

I've created a lot of graphics over the past 20 years that can be used as discussion starters in many places. They focus on finding strategies and building systems of support that help kids living in high poverty areas move through school and into adult jobs and careers.

For this to happen, individuals need to do their own research, reading and reflection. Groups, or learning circles, need to form and discuss ideas that are available on line from myself and others, then use maps to plan ways to build and sustain public and provide support for solutions that need to be available in many neighborhoods, not just a few high profile programs or high visibility neighborhoods.

I've posted over 60 presentations on Scribed that you can use in your learning circles and more than 1000 articles on this blog since 2005.  Here's one I posted yesterday.

I'm not going to say, "After the election, I hope leaders will begin to gather and look at these ideas." because people have been gathering in big and small groups for many years.

I started an archive on my Facebook page this week, pointing to Twitter chats that I've followed, and contributed ideas to.  This is just one way to see who else is already active in this effort.

I created this concept map several years ago and update it regularly. It shows Chicago area youth-serving organizations who act as intermediaries to bring others together. They are already focusing on helping kids have greater learning opportunities.

The problem I see is that if you look at the web sites of these organizations and others in my web library, they don't have a similar map on their sites. Thus, each is seeking a solution to the same problem, but doing so with a different network of partners, leaders and resources.

Yes. There is a level of overlap and interaction.  However, there are very few who use GIS maps to show all the places where youth programs are needed, or concept maps to show program design and strategy, or all of the different types of support kids and families need as kids move from birth to work.  Furthermore, very few are focused at helping every organization in their network acquire the on-going talent, dollars, ideas, technology and attention that each needs to be good at it's role.

Thus, if you're forming a learning circle, look at what's on my web site and what's on other people's web sites. Then ask "Which of these ideas make sense to me and which do I want to try to apply to my own efforts?"

This needs to be happening in thousands of places to help disadvantaged kids have greater opportunities to succeed in life. It also needs to be happening to solve some of the other problems we face, such as a broken political system and a weakening democracy.

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