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Lessons learned back in Canfield

Published: Tue, April 19, 2011 @ 12:00 a.m.

Lessons learned back in Canfield

The quality of education I received at Canfield Local Schools has profoundly shaped who I am and enabled me to find success in my adult life. In addition to academic content, I was taught analytical problem-solving skills, compassion for others, and the responsibilities of citizenship in a participatory democracy. One of those responsibilities is supporting the schools in one’s community.

As an educator, I have a dual perspective of CLSD. I not only look back through the rosy lens of nostalgia, but also with the critical lens of someone who has an advanced degree in the education field. Throughout college and graduate school, I became increasingly more impressed and aware that I had an incredibly effective k-12 schooling experience. In a world where so many communities have extreme difficulties educating their youth, Canfield has been doing it right for decades.

The quality of personnel in the school district is the most effective and crucial element, and one that will simply be impossible to keep at its current level if the levy does not pass. As my career has moved up through three different school districts (each more desirable to work in and difficult to find employment in than the previous one), I have constantly reflected on the educational values instilled in me by my Canfield teachers. Mrs. Kerpsack. Mrs. Pesce. Mrs. Amon. Mrs. Armbrecht. I can still go back and list every teacher I had from kindergarten through 12th grade, because each one had a profound effect on the way I view and participate in the world around me. Mr. Costello, Mr. Schragel, Mrs. Eynon, and Mr. DeAngelo are a constant chorus in the back of my mind while I teach my own students with the same passion and competence that Canfield teachers taught me years ago. There is no telling how far this ripple effect reaches; I have over a dozen of my own former students currently pursuing careers in education.

It pains me to hear that not all Canfield residents are aware of what they have, and how easily they could maintain it or deprive future generations of it.

Please continue the legacy by voting in support of Canfield Local Schools’ levy.

Megan Neville-Jellen, Solon

The writer is a 1999 graduate of Canfield High School.


1yes(10 comments)posted 3 years, 9 months ago

Teachers are not over paid. Neither are doctors or attorneys or wherever the average individual works. We are all underpaid, but we all watch the overpaid work. By this I mean those who watch television. Compared to actors, football players, basketball players, or baseball players and newscasters, we make peanuts.

The fact confronting Canfield, Poland, McDonald, and many school systems is that the TAXPAYERS are the persons paying the salaries. TAXPAYERS are the boss or business owner in a sense. At this time in Ohio we have become top heavy with government employees and less private sector workers. Public servants are no longer servants to the taxpayer, but a burden. All the school systems I have reviewed have paid their teachers some handsome increases along with some really nice administrators increases. Problem is that there are not many TAXPAYERS if any making enough money to fund these increases.

In 2006 my wife’s teaching job was eliminated. After 28 years of service no union could save it, nor could her good employee evaluations. As a result she found a new teaching position and had her salary reduced about 32%. When I look at the pay increases in these school districts, I see salary increases of as much as $19,000 since 2004. Sure those people may be worth it, but can we afford to pay it? Shame on those public servants for even asking the TAXPAYER for pay increases in the current economic time, expecting us to approve it in a TAX increase. We are in hard economic times. Why must the employer (the TAXPAYER) commit to this type of pay increase when we have not had that increase ourselves in most cases? Think about the fixed income individuals that will share the burden of the TAX to pay our public servants that make over $50,000 per year.

When every teacher and administrator takes 32% cut in pay like our household did, most TAXPAYERS would not mind helping out too if needed. Let us all think outside the box and look for other ways to pay our public servants. How about some contributions from those people we watch work everyday or may be just stop watching the actors and sports figures work.

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