Sunday, March 29, 2009

{Press Enterprise 3/28/2009}

District broke a vow
Recently, the Colton Joint Unified School District Board of Education asked for suggestions in naming its planned high school ("Board OKs name for new high school," March 13).
By an overwhelming majority, the submissions favored the name Grand Terrace High School. Yet, the board voted instead to name the new school after Ray Abril, a former board member, dismissing the input from the community.
Well, dear school board members, in your recent vote you forgot your own mission statement: The district is a partnership of parents, students, school and community.
Where was the partnership in this vote?
And how about listening to the parents of students who will be schooled at the new building? The name suggestions from these people should be given more weight in the decision-making than any ideas from those not directly connected to the school.
Character counts, and I say that the members of the school board showed less than acceptable character with their vote. They should take care of education and budget problems, and leave the naming of the high school to residents.
I recently heard about JoAnn Johnson, who has managed the Grand Terrace Senior Center. She declined the suggestion that the new building be named after her, because she believes the center belongs to the residents it serves. Now that is character!
I challenge Abril to do the same thing. He could show that he has character by declining to have the school named after him.
"Grand Terrace High" is the will of the people!

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