What we want

| 29 Sep 2011 | 09:31

    To the editor: Once, when I complained to the late Ginger Harris about my school taxes, saying that I had never had a child in the DV system and probably never would, she replied with a rebuke: We don’t pay school taxes, she explained, because we have children in the school; we shell out because, seeing that it’s doing such a good job, we support the school and encourage its efforts. Okay, I said, that’s what we want. When do we get that? I tell this story because the state has released SAT scores for all secondary schools in Pennsylvania, and I tell it because for about the the 30th straight year, Delaware Valley has failed to reach our state’s average. This time we are 13 points down in verbal, 17 points down in writing, and a whopping 28 points down in math. Well, maybe we can become known as a sports academy. This is what we want, right? All this would be different if Pennsylvania’s average were impossibly high, but it’s not. In fact, the state average places us in the bottom three or four nationally -- usually with North Carolina, Alabama and Florida. Which means that on SAT’s Delaware Valley is performing at the same level as some of the worst schools in the country. This is partly why so few of our graduates go on to private (let alone selective) colleges. This is what we want? Our administration is telling us how well they are doing. They have no excuses. We’ve given them everything they’ve asked for -- money, raises, benefits, complete autonomy in hiring and firing, buildings, land, sports infrastructure, etc., and we’ve even allowed a basketball referee to be made our director of secondary education. When our kids apply to Dartmouth and end up at Kutztown, I hope they remember how well the Finans have done here over the decades. Hey, we’re paying for this, so we must be getting what we want, right? If all this is not what we want, we need a new administration. We need to allow the Finans’ contracts to expire, not renew them, and say bon voyage, bona fortuna, hasta la vista, yob vas and auf wiedersehn. Whatever language they understand. They certainly don’t comprehend the idea that our school’s primary purpose is to educate our students. Isn’t that, simply, what we want? Why won’t they give us what we want? Tony Splendora Milford