President Obama’s text from the speech he is giving to America’s school children, from Wakefield High School in Arlington, VA has been posted at whitehouse.gov. The entire speech can be found HERE.
Here is an excerpt from his speech:
But at the end of the day, we can have the most dedicated teachers, the most supportive parents, and the best schools in the world – and none of it will matter unless all of you fulfill your responsibilities. Unless you show up to those schools; pay attention to those teachers; listen to your parents, grandparents and other adults; and put in the hard work it takes to succeed.
And that’s what I want to focus on today: the responsibility each of you has for your education. I want to start with the responsibility you have to yourself.
Every single one of you has something you’re good at. Every single one of you has something to offer. And you have a responsibility to yourself to discover what that is. That’s the opportunity an education can provide.
Maybe you could be a good writer – maybe even good enough to write a book or articles in a newspaper – but you might not know it until you write a paper for your English class. Maybe you could be an innovator or an inventor – maybe even good enough to come up with the next iPhone or a new medicine or vaccine – but you might not know it until you do a project for your science class. Maybe you could be a mayor or a Senator or a Supreme Court Justice, but you might not know that until you join student government or the debate team.
And no matter what you want to do with your life – I guarantee that you’ll need an education to do it. You want to be a doctor, or a teacher, or a police officer? You want to be a nurse or an architect, a lawyer or a member of our military? You’re going to need a good education for every single one of those careers. You can’t drop out of school and just drop into a good job. You’ve got to work for it and train for it and learn for it.
I orginially posted the speech. It was just too long, so I went back and linked to it. Please take the time to read it, especially if you have children in school. I can’t think of a better message to give to any kid on that first day.
It is the first day of school that really sets the stage for those other 180 days. If you miss the first day, its like buttoning up your shirt not matching the right button with the right button hole. You have missed the beginning.
I applaud President Obama for taking the time to welcome the kids back to school and for acknowledging the importance of doing well. The first day of school is the best time for such an address. In my opinion, he hit a homerun with this one.
The speech reportly lasts around 18 minutes.