Letters to the editor
Having taught school and served as an administrator for more than 30 years, I read with amazement and disgust the circus that the local school board has allowed to exist and grow.
“The tail wagging the dog show.” Who’s in charge? Dr. D or Dr. Sims. The mediation was a waste of taxpayer money. There is no resolve.
The pay for performance has failed in every state and school district that tried. There is no way a teacher can be judged on teaching performance from one year to the next. Students do not all learn at the same rate or speed. All classes are different from year to year. Too much time is wasted in meetings, conferences and paper shuffling. Teachers are forced to teach “the test” rather than teach subject matter. If this school district wants to destroy the school system then continue the “pay for performance.”
This approach causes jealousy, no cooperation, resentment and no teamwork. Teachers want to teach and their students to be successful.
If the school board wants good schools, good teachers and successful students, then hire good principals. Principals make the difference in the success of schools. Good principals are not office sitters, they are on the playground, in classrooms. A good principal is a “we” person not an “I” person, all about me.
The school board’s responsibility is to make policy according to state mandates and enforce these policies by holding the superintendent, staff, administration, teachers, custodians, lunchroom workers and bus drivers accountable. Petty politics and weak board members make for poor schools. You were elected by the people to watch over the schools, guide this school district to be the best. If you want to know what’s going on in schools just ask a “teacher.” They are the front line.
A purpose in life
In Autumn Phillip’s story, “It’s not the destination…” she mentions that, as a college freshman she was “trying to figure out whether there was a purpose in this life.”
At a similar period in my life I faced the same question. I had just finished business school and was working at my first job. Was this all there was to life? Wasn’t there some purpose? I didn’t know it at the time but for months my pastor had been praying for me and I soon found this purpose for my life. The meaning of John 3:16 became real when I realized that Christ had given his life for me, and that by receiving His gift of forgiveness, I could have eternal life. My purpose here on earth is to live for Christ and God. “For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s”. I Corinthians 6:20.
Shirley C. Houk
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