I am writing to support a “yes” vote on question 3A in the upcoming election. The opportunity for Lake County to dedicate $26 million to improving its schools is too good to pass up. The BEST grant will directly strengthen the infrastructure of the buildings and the long-term demographic and financial stability of Leadville. But 3A is about more than pipes and property values; on a deeper level, the bond issue represents an investment in the public good.
Education has been a critical component of American life since before the United States was even born. In 1647, Massachusetts set a precedent by mandating that each town provide a school for its citizens, and it was public education that set Americans apart from their European rivals. Widespread literacy enabled the Founding Fathers to garner support from the majority of average colonists; an enlightened citizenry became a capable and responsible electorate in a burgeoning democracy; innovative technology produced material goods for the masses and pushed the United States to the forefront of a global economy, eventually enabling Americans to win two World Wars; and educated baby boomers fueled spectacular peacetime advances in high-tech, medical, aerospace, and information technologies.