“Laocoön” by El Greco (Domenikos Theotokopoulos)
Wednesday, April 3, 2019
A lot changed last week.
We’re searching for our third superintendent in two months. Good job, everyone.
We’re a laughing stock.
A media frenzy has descended upon the town — and why wouldn’t it? It’s a straightforward story. Drop in for a few hours, shoot some B-roll, get a few hard-hitting quotes, and you’re back at the station with a burger and fries by noon. Easy as apple pie. If you wanted to go the extra mile, close the 45-second segment with a few sound bites from a fiery school board meeting and you have your whipped cream and cherry, too.
But our situation is far from easy and far less tasty.
Investigations. Backstabbing. Money down the drain. We’re about as distracted and directionless as a toddler in a Toys-R-Us. More accusations are flying in town than fingers at a Five-Finger Discount Symposium hosted by the Kleptomaniac Association of America. And, just as it would be hard to finger who stole what from the electronics section of a struggling Sears, we, too, have many unanswered questions.
Continue reading “Welcome To Tecumseh, Mr. Washington, Please Pardon Our Peculiar Propensity For Pageantry”
“The Fall of Phaeton” by Sir Peter Paul Rubens
Tuesday, March 26, 2019
There are few places for children as political as the gym. Friends, enemies, cliques, and out-groups congeal here. Rumors slip past heated negotiations of lunchtime trades before dodgeballs replace lunch tables. It’s a microcosm of Darwinism, survival of the fittest. For those deficient in school’s societal expectations, the gym is purgatory. It’s political for parents, too.
Last night’s Tecumseh Public Schools board meeting took place in a gym—awkwardly lit with a sound system as unqualified for its job as Supt. Ryan Rhoades. Maybe the problem wasn’t the sound system, but the hushed discussions among board members, conversing with one another in private during an open meeting, tip-toeing toward an Open Meetings Act violation.
Continue reading “Turmoil Ravages Tecumseh Public Schools As Principals, Teachers Fear Retaliation”
“Censorship is telling a man he can’t have a steak just because a baby can’t chew it.”
― Mark Twain
I came across an article on The Friendly Atheist about Glen Ellyn School District 41 and its ban on The Perks of Being a Wallflower.
A handful of parents have raised concerns that the material covered in the book to be too mature for 8th grade students. Thinking that homosexuality, rape, and sex are absent themes from teenagers is myopic–parents cannot continue to live in a fantasy land.
Parenting and being a parent are not one in the same. To think that a book that covers unconventional topics be eliminated from the hands of those who need it because a parent finds the material distasteful is by no means a logical reason for its removal.
What’s most discerning is that there is still a push to ban books that a handful find obscene or distasteful. In today’s age of instant gratification of any bit of media one desires, to think a book tackling issues teens deal with on a daily base is in the crosshairs shows how far we still have to go before speech is truly free.
“History proves there is no better advertisement for a book than to condemn it for obscenity.” ― Holbrook Jackson
I hope this happens with the students of Glen Ellyn School District 41.