Bring the outside in

In our crazy times, many issues are on our minds and it is difficult to know who is really going to stand up for us. On a local and very personal level, no issue is more important than our children and their success. We know that education must be valued before it matters and students must feel important before they will stay in school. After listening to the platforms of the various Buncombe County School Board candidates, one sticks out in my mind as someone who can help to fulfill all these goals. “You can’t read a label from inside a jar” was a statement I heard on an Edward Harwood commercial while driving to work one morning.

I started thinking, maybe what is wrong with education is that we are lacking perspective. On any discussion panel, a variety of people from all walks of life create the richest discussions and are able to solve more problems. What we need on the school board is not a crowd of former teachers, but someone who brings a different point of view to the issues and problems students are facing that are causing many of them to leave school. These issues need a real look, and the community needs to feel comfortable enough to get involved. Without this, we are going down a path that is worn out and is leading us nowhere.

It is time to realize that the school system cannot do it alone, and to elect a real liaison between the community and the system: someone who can remove the intimidation and make parents feel comfortable enough to offer suggestions, therefore becoming more involved with the decision makers in our county. With a balance of those who are on the inside of the jar (of education) looking out, and those who are looking in wondering where they fit in, our kids will finally realize how important they really are.

— D. Crabb

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