Letter: Re-2 standards are to be praised
In regards to Re-2 school expulsions, I would like to begin by saying this is the first letter to the editor written by me that contains negative comments. My family is fourth generation through the Garfield Re-2 school system. My grandmother graduated and played women’s basketball for the then New Castle Tigers in the 1930s. My mother and father graduated from Rifle High School. Both my wife and I are alumni of Rifle High School; our daughter and son also graduated from Rifle High School.
I have served on the Garfield Re-2 school board, the Rifle Area Chamber of Commerce Board and the Little Britches Rodeo Board. As Rifle’s Information Center’s first manager I was able to interact with local government and private entities to promote a positive environment for residents and visitors in our community.
With that being said, I would like to extend my support for the decisions made by the Garfield Re-2 school board regarding recent expulsions. To think that my children are always right is a naive approach to parenting. There have been times our children have needed to be disciplined in school. The punishment has always been fair regarding their actions. That action was also dealt with at home.
School administrators and teachers in today’s world not only have the responsibility of educating our children but in a lot of instances deal with society’s trend of entitlement. Education is a privilege and should be respected as such. I agree with Theresa Hamilton’s statement in the Post Independent regarding Re-2 expulsion: “We have a code of conduct. We don’t have a one strike and you’re out practice.”
It’s an evolutionary process, and I feel confident that there were measures taken with these students that were progressive in order to avoid expulsion. I am proud that this district “holds our kids to high expectations.”
In response to the Padres and Jovenes Unidos report “Ending the school to prison pipeline: The Colorado School prison report,” I applaud Re-2 for keeping the school environment safe and to a higher degree of excellence.
As a former Colorado Department of Corrections employee, I have seen firsthand the results of “putting your head in the sand” in dealing with negative human behavior.
Because of the negative behaviors of a small few, the burden of student safety has required districts to become proactive in ways that may be offensive to a small number of parents. I pray Re-2 does not have to experience the sadness of Columbine or other similar school tragedies.
The Padres and Jovenes Unidos report states Re-2 is 13th highest in expulsion rate. I congratulate you in your courage and due diligence in providing our schools a safe environment for our children. Keep up this standard of excellence and rich history of tradition.
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