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In his own words

Monday, April 10, 2006

Forest Buell seeking school board position

My name is Forest Buell. I am asking for your vote as a school board member-at-large on May 2.

My background has largely been staged in Clay County, Ind., having been born and public school educated at Bowling Green. My father was a one-room school teacher and a farmer. He was successful in both occupations. His first school assignment was teaching grades 1-8 in a little school house in Cardonia, Ind. My mother literally kept the home fires burning and cared for six children -- five of whom attended college and one who expanded and maintained the family farm.

My public school years were during the great depression of the 1930s and World War II. My college years were post-World War II. After completing medical school, I served in the Strategic Air Command as a medical officer overseas. In all of my travels, I have had an interest in how the students received their education in different countries. My greatest concern has been how our U.S.A. students have been and are being educated! I firmly believe that the strength of any country is determined proportionally to the degree of compassion and support the country's citizens and government displays in educating its students. Any country that denies any segment of students the opportunity to fully develop educational skills weakens itself in direct proportion to the number of students who are denied this opportunity. The drop out situation in our corporation and in out country is just as large a threat as the terrorists' threat to our security.

At this stage of school performance, it is very important that our school board inform its public of the total number of students who have dropped out of our schools each year since 1980. The public is entitled to know why students are dropping out and how this problem can be addressed and corrected. Our country's fate may depend on these answers. Our corporation cannot continue to be taxed to support dysfunctional schools. Before anything can be done, it is important that we put together a data collection which starts with exit interviews with each drop out to establish the cause of the student leaving. This process could help to lead us to a workable solution that returns current crop outs to our classrooms and prevents future students from leaving school.

Ignoring the magnitude of the student drop out problem by our school board cannot be accepted by our public and students as a valid solution. The dropout problem has been presented to our school board members for many years at their public meetings. For some reason, the presentations have been absent in the news reports and in the recorded minutes of the school board meetings. The time has come to count the dropout students and to solve their problems! Other school boards in our country are finding a way

Our school board's denial and zero response to questions concerning dropout students constitutes a betrayal to students needing help! Our school board has given a nameless non-recognizable face to all drop out students and placed the blame for this problem on an unidentifiable mass of individuals who are out there adrift in our society. It is time that our school board places the blame and the causes for our dropout problems squarely in the board room and our school rooms! These causes must be analyzed and corrected with reliable solutions. Our school board must put numbers, names and faces on these suffering (doomed) students in order to abolish the drop out problem. The best homeland security includes educating all students to their peak capacity.

Our students' education takes place in the classrooms. This involves the student-teacher relationship. Both need to be present in the classroom together for education to develop and progress. Keep the student there! Keep the teacher there! Keep the teacher's involvement in activities outside the classroom to a minimum. Select teachers who can assess and evaluate the student fairly and who can transfer the educational material to each student. Evaluate the teachers regularly on the ability to make this transfer successfully. Choose curriculum and materials that students can use when the graduate from our schools!

Keep teachers' work and activities outside the classroom to a minimum. Keep students' time and activities inside the classroom to the maximum!

Our school board continues to self-destruct by not addressing educational values for all students. It continues to plan how to collect tax dollars and how to spend those tax dollars for dysfunctional schools.

I am proud to have been able to help keep our community schools in Clay City and pleased to see Clay City students achieve in these schools! I question why our local and state school planners do not see fit to have more of this type of school in our corporation. Could this be an answer to our drop out problem?

The problems in our larger schools in the northern part of our corporation that remain unsolved by our school board can weaken and damage our Clay City schools. I believe that the Clay City schools could be improved by having its own administration and the chance to use the full amount of school taxes paid by the taxpayers in the Clay City School district. Clay City school patrons need to seriously consider this in order to improve the educational offerings in the Clay City Schools and to prevent deterioration of education in our Clay City Schools!

Clay City's smaller school cannot survive as a Four Star School in the present administrative environment. Clay City taxpayers cannot continue to allow their subsidizing tax dollars to be used to finance dysfunctional large schools. All of the Clay City area tax dollars are needed in our Clay City Schools! This will not happen under the present school board's administration. All tax dollars collected in this corporation should be used for the maximum educational benefit of all students. All tax dollars collected from the Clay City School area taxpayers should be used for Clay City Schools! The Clay City School public must unite for this cause and take steps to make it happen!

Let us use all Clay City School Tax Dollars for all Clay City Community School Students! Spending school tax dollars from taxpayers from the Clay City school community for dysfunctional schools elsewhere in the school corporation penalizes our Clay City school students and is unfair!

My goals as a school board member for the next four years are to establish equal opportunity for education for all students, return dropout students to the classrooms, prevent future dropouts, establish a safe and stable learning environment for all students in our schools, improve student health and help make our country more secure! If elected, I will seek to find answers to put all students back in our classrooms. I also want to convince the Clay City community citizens that they can administer and operate our schools and educate the Clay City students better than in the present situation. In an independent Clay City school district, all tax monies paid by Clay City School area patrons would be used for Clay City Students. Dividing the present corporation into two separate units would be advantageous to both new school districts.

Our students need more than your vote for me; they need your compassion and support to start down the road to solve their educational problems. This will require your vote and all of your support after your vote.



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