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Newswire – November 11, 2019


We offer this special Veterans “Day” edition of Newswire, because it shouldn’t just be about a day. The federal holiday was celebrated differently from place to place, but how many of the thousands of schools that were open took time to explore what Veteran’s Day is all about. It’s not too late, of course, to teach and to learn. So this Newswire is dedicated to the millions of men and women who have worn our country’s uniform, especially the nearly 1,400,000 who perished while serving.

CER’s Newswire is about achieving educational excellence, and it occurs to us that the pursuit of that would not be possible but for the sacrifices of our armed forces in defending all of our freedoms.

So join us in taking a break from the education battles and in saying



THE ARMY BEFORE THE ARMY.  Before the colonies won independence, the soldiers serving in the cause of freedom were known as “Continentals.” One of their first big tests came in August of 1776 when the British army landed on Long Island. George Washington’s general order of August 23rd said in part:

“The enemy have now landed on Long Island, and the hour is fast approaching, on which the honor and success of this army, and the safety of our bleeding country depend. ...And if this army will but emulate and imitate their brave countrymen in other parts of America, there is no doubt they will, by a glorious victory, save their country and acquire themselves immortal honor.”

The rest of the story and resources that Educators will find instrumental come from the Library of Congress.

PRESIDENT ABRAHAM LINCOLN gave the best remembered address honoring bravery in uniform at the dedication of Gettysburg cemetery. His words still resonate. After you read this, go back and read the full speech with your family, your school, your kids.

“...It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”


WORLD WAR I was America’s next large conflict. Perhaps the most moving commemoration of soldiers in that battle was actually written by a Canadian physician who also served in the Canadian Army.  His poem “In Flanders Fields” is considered a universal tribute, and is the reason that the red poppy is still used to symbolize support for veterans.


FRANKLIN ROOSEVELT was often eloquent, yet never more so than on June 6, 1944, when he addressed the nation to inform it of “the largest amphibious invasion force in history massed in the waters of the English Channel,” the D-Day landings.

“...in this poignant moment hour, I ask you to join with me in prayer:

“Almighty God: Our sons, pride of our Nation, this day have set upon a mighty endeavor, a struggle to preserve our Republic, our religion, and our civilization, and to set free a suffering humanity. Lead them straight and true; give strength to their arms, stoutness to their hearts, steadfastness in their faith...O Lord, give us faith. Give us faith in Thee; faith in our sons; faith in each other; faith in our united crusade…With Thy blessing, we shall prevail over the unholy forces of our enemy. Thy will be done, Almighty God.”


THE BOYS OF POINTE DU HOC. President Ronald Reagan’s speech on the 40th anniversary of D-Day to its surviving heroes and dignitaries, is legendary. Watch it for yourself

“...These are the boys of Pointe du Hoc. These are the men who took the cliffs. These are the champions who helped free a continent. These are the heroes who helped end a war. Gentlemen, I look at you and I think of the words of Stephen Spender's poem. You are men who in your ``lives fought for life . . . and left the vivid air signed with your honor.''



Source: US Army



Founded in 1993, the Center for Education Reform aims to expand educational opportunities that lead to improved economic outcomes for all Americans — particularly our youth — ensuring that conditions are ripe for innovation, freedom and flexibility throughout U.S. education. We’re always delighted to hear from our readers...suggestions, questions and even the occasional complaint!