Our school system has tangoed between unrest and turmoil since Bird was in kindergarten. There have been occasional bouts of complete chaos peppering the years too. The school system has been investigated by the U.S. Department of Education’s office for civil rights and some Tea Party taxpayers group just to ensure it gets a thorough once over from all sides. Even Stephen Colbert has mocked our county’s schools. Parents line up to speak at school board meetings with a woe-is-me-me-me mentality. Everyone is so focused on her own kid that the collective greater good gets completely lost. If we harnessed the energy and goals of our community we would see all kids lifted up. But everyone staggers in the blindness of me-me-me. It’s time to delete the “o” from woe to focus on “we.” I’m a word girl. Bear with me.
Our country is drowning in “mesiry.” That’s misery due to the focus on me instead of we. This is where the trickle down theory actually works. You see, this whole national partisan me-focused mentality trickles down to local levels. An unseemly amount of money is spent on local and municipal races, with mud slinging reaching across county lines. The point isn’t so much to win the election as it is to cream the other candidate. The air is thick with mesiry. School board politics and shenanigans are making headlines once again in Wake County. It’s become a finger pointing school yard joke that makes my second grader look like a Yale debate team captain when he fights with his older brother.
Petulance rules. We have a county commissioner who is so pissed off at the school board that he took his ball and left the playground. He’s so wrapped up in mesiry that he can’t even bear to put the children first and participate in mature dialogue. Neck in neck with Petulance on the playground is Hypocrisy. Oh, there’s serious elbowing for first place here.
Sort of unrelated but still relevant, we have a current school board member who is running for State Superintendent of Education. Let’s just say that I counted no fewer than six punctuation and grammatical errors in a recent campaign email (that wrapped up with Bible verses). We do still separate church and state, right?
I can’t help but wonder where all this fighting, petulance, and hypocrisy leaves our children.
The lip service is our children matter. And there’s my old favorite, said in your best victim voice with back of hand splayed across forehead, “We’re all here because of the children.” Funny that no one on the county board of commissioners (the keepers of the purse strings) has any children in our public school system. Just sayin’.
Forgive my snark and impatience. I am simply tired of adults who are charged with our school system fighting out their own political warfare while most of them have their eye on the next rung of their personal political ladder. The infamous Koch brothers even have their hands in this mess. That right there should indicate how unsavory the situation is.
Had families and leaders been more focused on the WE, our kids (not mine, not yours, OURS) could be eating healthy school lunches (oxymoron no more!), have ample books and supplies in classrooms, focus on the highest need families who are struggling and need a hand instead of finger pointing, and have enough resources so gifted fourth grade students aren’t in a class of 40+ kids getting the bare bones attention they need (while parents are told that gifted kids are naturally motivated and don’t need a lot of direction…for the record, I call bullshit on that).
Our future, our kids, our schools, our community. This is about us, not you. Not me.
Hatchets don’t belong in the school yard. Bury it.