It was very encouraging to see the members attending the Rotary Club of Columbus Wednesday luncheon give Jamie Vollmer a standing ovation after his talk about how vital it is for business leaders, as well as the rest of the community, to support public education.
Vollmer, a former lawyer and successful businessman who led the franchise division of the Great Midwestern Ice Cream Company in Iowa, now spends his time making talks and writing books supporting public education. He wrote the acclaimed Schools Cannot Do It Alone.
It’s not a matter of being nice, he says. It’s a matter of doing what needs to be done for his and the country’s self-interst. For those who have no children in public schools and oppose paying taxes for them, he said they should be thinking about the how important it is to have an educated work force, and how they have a responsibility to their communities. He also pointed out that history is very clear about what happens when the gap between the “haves” and “have-nots” gets too wide. The “have-nots” come for the “haves.”
He’s among those who believe that quality education for all children is what will make for a better life for all members of a community. I tend to agree.