Sunday, March 9, 2014

Speak Up

"Nearly all men can stand adversity,
but if you want to test a man's character, give him power."
--Abraham Lincoln

Holy Moly!  We have a full "As The World Turns" going on in my little town.
It's crazy.
It's ludicrous.
It would be something worth talking about if it didn't involve coaches and kids...make that one kid.
But maybe that makes it even more worth talking about.

We have a school board that governs our schools.
We have 8 elementary schools; three junior high schools; three high schools and a whole group of people who choose 
"independent study".
That's a lot of students, gobs of teachers and plenty of administrators for five people to attempt to guide.

It's a thankless job.
Let's establish that right now.
There are long hours, lots of emotion, endless need and never enough money.
Very, very few take the time to thank our school board.
Plenty find a way to complain.
That's the nature of the beast.

I have a good friend who has just begun her tenure on a school board in a neighboring town.
As a teacher and a parent and a citizen, I get it...big time.

However, it's time to shed some light.

What is going on??
Who is in charge?

Is it really possible for one parent who is on the school board to demand an "investigation" about their one child getting cut from a sports team -- that actually costs over $22,000 -- and not have a full rebellion from all parents, educators, administrators and anyone else who cares about our schools and our town???

Is it really possible to stay quiet and just feel disappointed??

Let's start with some unpleasant facts...if you're on the school board it is your job to stay neutral and on the side of the schools.
Yes, even if your own child gets cut from a team and you feel it was unfair.
Even if you feel that the coach is doing a poor job.
You are supposed to have faith in the system you are a part are supposed to trust the process.

It is a breach of your privilege of being on the school board to actively work to fire a coach.ever.
Frankly, you shouldn't have that level of power.

Once that process began, the rest of the school board had the hard job of confronting a person who was misusing her position of power.

The rest of the school board has shirked its duties.over and over again.

Allowing $22,000 to be spent on an "investigation" about one student and one coach is unconscionable.

Let's list some things that $22,000 could be used for in our district:
1) a half time school counselor at the high school level
2) 44 Ipads to use in any school
3) a new roof on any school 
4) updated heating/cooling system
5) professional growth for an entire staff or two at a school site.
5) filling an entire school library with new books

We still don't know who authorized the "investigation" -- we don't know why the "investigation" created a 72 page report -- and we don't know why it cost $22,000.

We have a right to know and to see through these proceedings.
After all, we're paying the tab!

When we are quiet about this as citizens, guess who loses?

Our kids.
Our teachers.
Our coaches.

Those coaches work for a pittance.
They have to deal with way too much as it is already to allow this disgrace to go unfettered.

Coaches need respect.
Coaches need positive support.

Coaches are doing the best they can.

Can they do better?
We all can.

Yes. Students get cut from teams.
That's how competitive teams work.
If you don't like that, don't participate.

Yes. My own children got cut from teams.
And yes, I watched someone get cut from a team in part because of the way she spoke to her mother on the phone.
The captain of that team made a comment to the coach about that behavior and yes, that mattered.
It should.
It speaks to how that person would be on a team and as a team-mate.

Should a person be cut from a team because his/her parents are difficult??
Well, that's up to the coach.
And, yes, that's his/her call to make.

We need to stop what we're doing as individuals in our town and let our kids and teachers and coaches know how important they are.
We need to speak up.

Someone's got to...
because when we're silent, we give the impression that it's all  okay.
And, ummmmm it's not.
Not even a little.
We give the impression that we're fine with it.
And, I'm not.

Where's the grace???
In the coaches and teachers and students who still have faith.
Who still trust the process.
Who believe that it will all work out, 
if they just keep working hard and keep their eyes on the prize.

It's for them that I write this.
You, yes you, are my inspiration.
Keep at it.
We've got your back.

No comments:

Post a Comment