This #blog4nwp guest post comes from Jeff Grinvalds.
I am a current member of the Board of Directors of the Nebraska Writing Project. I have been thinking about this issue for quite some time now, but the Libyan action spurned me to take action. On one hand I thought, yes, some cuts must be made because we do not have money to fund everything. Perhaps the NWP could find private funds to replace lost federal revenue.
But then I saw that we spent ten times the entire NWP budget in four days of missile strikes killing and destroying people in another country, and I was incensed.
In my estimation, during my nine years in the NWP, I have taught about one-thousand students. Some of these students have gone on to be lawyers, engineers and doctors. Others have joined the military, and some have even become teachers themselves. All of these former students who still maintain contact with me share stories of how I inspired them or how I was different from other teachers (in a good way). I attribute this to my training with the Nebraska Writing Project in the summer of 2002. It was during this Summer Institute that I learned to actually be an active part of my classroom and to work with my students together to accomplish goals. I learned how to facilitate a classroom rather than simply lecture and grade. I became a better teacher, and my students have thanked me for it.
If this is my story, and I’m just one of thousands of brilliant, dedicated members of the National Writing Project, then our influence has been felt by countless students throughout this great nation. And without further funding, future teachers will not become a part of this amazing institution. Yet another great force for good in our struggling educational system will be silenced, and all of us will be worse off for it.
Save the National Writing Project.