Letter to the Editor

Reader tired of fighting 'war' alone

Sunday, April 5, 2009

To the Editor:

After the last two years, I feel like I've fought a war. In August 2007, the Clay Community Schools Corporation proposed to spend $53 million on a building project that did not include building a new school, but did include an absurd amount for maintenance facility.

I decided to work to change the project and, after some research into the school corporation, found that there were options that make our school corporation more cost-effective and allow us to target more money into actually teaching.

Apparently, no one cares about improving education in this area. We have many devoted teachers, but we give them too many students so that all they can do is watch students fail, even though the students go to the next grade when they haven't learned what the needed to be prepared for that level. We cannot teach many of our Advanced Placement classes in our high schools due to a lack of teachers, yet we add administrators and other support personnel while trying to operate too many small elementary schools and too many different locations with too little money.

Anyone with a lick of sense knows that you don't spread an operation all over the place because it costs you time and time is money. There is a reason that many of the new elementary schools being built or completed in Indiana have enrollments of 700 students. Those schools educate cost-effectively!

We should be building one and planning to build others so that we can afford teachers in all of our classrooms, both elementary and high school and to support our researched-based curriculum. Otherwise, we doom our lowest achievers to failure and hamper our highest achievers.

For two years, I have pleaded, pointed out facts, argued, debated and tried to wake people up to the fact that we can and should do better than we are.

Frankly, I'm tired!

It is not that one person or a few people cannot make changes for the good of the majority, but it is very frustrating and difficult when the people in control can limit you to a few minutes time to make your point while they have all the time they wish to promote folly.

It would appear that I have wasted my time. The population doesn't care and will not until they realize that we have failed the next generation by not providing proper education. Those in power do not care, they have their education and we are paying them to spend money foolishly. It is to the point that even those charged with enforcing the laws of Indiana appear to be more interested in protecting those in power than they are in their duty to the public.

Why, then, should I even care? I care, because I feel a duty to care about my community and its future, even if no one else does.

Leo Southworth,