Tuesday, September 12, 2017 – The First Space Race, Educational Reform and the Second Space Race
Today I am wearing my doctor hat – the flat one with the string on the side.
To: Dr. A., Dr. B., Dr. C., and MRS. DeVos. Yes, the letters mean nothing if you have them and everything if you don’t.
If I have thought of this, surely someone else has. Evidence continues to point to the Russians hacking the 2016 Presidential election. They (whoever “they” are) have reported “The Russians could not have done it without American help.”
Here’s what I’m thinking. The Russians, formerly known as Soviets, beat us to the Space Race so what makes you think they did not beat the United States in the Cyber Space Race?
I was eight and a half years old on October 4, 1957. CBS was one of only three TV stations at the time. My parents and I watched a talking head on a black and white television. The news person said “The Soviet Union successfully launched Sputnik I. It is a satellite that orbits the earth.”
My mother burst into tears and my father left the room, as was his custom, to go ponder what he had just heard.
The United States was caught off guard. The Soviets might have the capability to launch nuclear weapons from Europe to the U.S. The Soviets were way ahead of us technologically. The Space Race had just begun and the Soviets blasted out of the blocks like rockets. Pun intended.
As a result of Sputnik I and the continued Soviet space successes, the United States launched a reform of the educational institution requiring that science be taught at all grades from Kindergarten through high school. Opportunities for advanced sciences were to be offered at all levels of college from baccalaureate to postdoctoral studies.
It was imperative that public schools, colleges and universities teach sciences of all disciplines to surpass the Soviets. Significant funding for science education was made at all levels. To even catch the Soviets, we needed to grow scientists, math people, engineers, astronauts and all types of technical minds and WE DID! The United States ultimately surpassed the Soviets when Neil Armstrong took the one step for man, one giant leap for mankind in 1969 when he stepped on the surface of the moon.
The Russians caught us again with our rockets down when they hacked the election. It is time for the Cyber Space Race and the educational reforms necessary to create the scientists, mathematicians, engineers, computer specialists, and cybernauts to once again surpass the Russians. It is time to adequately fund programs such as STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) programs at all levels. http://www.stemedcoalition.org/
It is time for MRS. DeVos to create funded mandates to encourage and engage learners at early ages to appreciate, enjoy and learn science of all types from frogs to physics. It is time to create the learning environments, including after school programs in public schools, that foster the necessary people to conduct research, to create new frontiers and to educate others with real data-driven research sciences and not the junk sciences currently in vogue and subscribed to by a backwards looking administration.
It is time, MRS. DeVos, to start planning for their future and quick sticking them with ours. It is time to boldly go and split our infinitives and educate the right people with the right stuff to win this Cyber Race.
Read about Sputnik I – https://history.nasa.gov/sputnik/
Hear the CBS broadcast about the Sputnik I https://youtu.b