We all must change

Published 9:40 pm Friday, July 11, 2014


We in Franklin City have been in a gradual decline for many years. There have been significant events that have exacerbated this process, but the factor that has most harmfully contributed to our decline has been the operative “we” in my initial sentence; for we, the citizenry of Franklin, have sat by for years and allowed an insidious but outrageous decline to unfold in our system of public education.

And if we now think that a new superintendent or a new chairman of the school board will be sufficient to bring change to the extent that is needed, we are woefully wrong.

Make no mistake: each element of our community — our businesses, community college, churches, civic organizations, local government and residential areas — each can claim an immediate value to the community; but it’s the children of our community — and their preparation for a happy and successful adulthood — that contribute most of all to the long-term well-being of our entire community. And yet we have too long neglected them.

There recently has been much accomplished (at least at our middle and high schools) as a result of enlightened administrative leadership at those two schools, as a result of outstanding teachers across the system, and as a result of citizen volunteerism — the vital triple partnership. And these exciting accomplishments — only in their infancy — point to the vast potential for progress that exists all across our school system and thus our community and its future.

To release this potential, we must change: we few who have power or influence in our community — and we many who think we are not responsible or who think we have nothing worthy to contribute.

For purposes of Thursday’s FCPS Board meeting and regarding the organization of their membership, I am asking for a vote for change.

But regardless of the outcome of this vote, I am also asking every citizen in our wonderful community to accept responsibility for change and for involvement in our public schools, for therein lies the future wellbeing of our entire community. We all must change, and each of us has the choice.


Howie Soucek