Blog: Further thoughts on a week of media coverage

While the appearance on the Today show this week conformed to television time demands and was, therefore, all too brief, the segment did touch on some significant issues.

Some key points were offered by psychiatrist Dr. Janet Taylor who reminded the audience that it isn.t just the kids that are feeling the pressure generated by the current system, but also the parents. It is clear that children often mirror their parents' behavior; frustration and anxiety can become a downward spiral, placing a greater load on children and adults alike.

At the end of the show, Dr. Taylor underscored an even larger point. "The other important thing is purpose," she said. "We have our kids pushing and pushing and they don’t see what the purpose is and how we talk about that as families."

It is critical for us to remember that this is a story about the values that society transmits to its children. If we as parents offer children a set of cherished expectations that cannot be fulfilled, we are robbing our kids of a sense of purpose – we are offering them at best frustration and at worst hopelessness.

The producers of Today highlighted Tara Krams, a mother of two who works as a middle school counselor in Colorado. Tara is a professional who provides advice to students. Like many others we met in the process of making the film, she was surprised at how well she recognized the stories she saw on screen. "We need to re-examine the priorities of our own family routine," she said, "because it feels like a rat race."

We would like to remind everyone that they can share our spot on the Today show by going to MSNBC's website and searching for Race to Nowhere.