Wednesday, March 22, 2023

EDITORIAL: Yes for all the right reasons

| March 12, 2023 1:00 AM

“We see the world not as it is, but as we are.” — Stephen Covey

Look into your public schools and what do you see?

To be clear, we’re asking respectfully that you actually look into your neighborhood school, not that you accept the word of others about what you’d find if you ever bothered to see for yourself.

Some might tell you that only goodness and light reside there. That every teacher is amazing. That every administrator is the cream of the crop. That other than a knee scrape or an embarrassing mistake, frowns and tears are unknowns in the daily equation.

Others might tell you that indoctrination permeates the halls and walls like wood rot. That Woke is alive and unwell there. That CRT is AOK with the IEA. That behind every student is an institutional agenda to mold children into aberrated socialists.

Now voters in Kootenai County are being asked to put their money where their view of public education is. If you take the time to schedule a school visit, here’s what we think you’ll see, based on many visits we've taken ourselves.

Some children from happy, healthy families, and some from families barely hanging on. All will have problems — some more serious than others — and most will be working very hard to hide the ghosts that haunt them.

At the head of the classroom you’ll see a professional who’s dedicated his or her life to improving the lives of others.

Is every teacher in that school outstanding? Probably not. But none will be there for the wrong reasons.

The pay just isn’t good enough and the challenges from some societal sectors are brutal enough that the teachers you meet will have this in common: An iron will and a gentle heart to help children understand the world around them, aim high and strive to meet their goals.

Kootenai County’s three largest school districts, Coeur d’Alene, Post Falls and Lakeland, are all asking for help to meet basic budget needs. It’s an every-other-year ritual made necessary by the state’s unwillingness to adequately fund basic public education.

All three districts are transparent in their requests. None has anything to hide — no indoctrination, no CRT, no closet tyrants bent on turning Idaho and our nation into the next North Korea.

All three districts do a good job of educating children and improving their communities in an era when too many adults who should be partners have chosen to become adversaries — almost always without seeing for themselves what actually goes on in their neighborhood schools.

This is not a test of your deepest political beliefs or your appetite for taxes.

This is a test of your willingness to make the world a little better by raising the quality of life around you.

Your investment could help divert one of today’s students from a life of crime that ripples pain and cost through every layer of society.

Your support could help encourage a student who one day will cure the disease that would otherwise have killed your grandchild.

Please vote Yes because you see the world as a good place that needs people like you to make it even better.

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