Talk about a thankless job these days! You have to catch kids early to get them interested in language arts and why it's important. You have to impress on them that they can't get by solely on knowing computer programming, but have to know how to express themselves in a literate way.
I'm seeing the products of too few years of language arts instruction in the young reporters at our newspaper. I have to hold their hands to get them to write a little brief properly. It's really bad. I hope principals will wake up and make sure their curriculum gives language arts teachers something to do besides hand out computer assignments.