Dear Editor:

Another school year is coming to an end. The students have been testing, and everyone is eager to see the results. It has been a challenging year for the Board of Education, central office, staff, the children as well as the parents. So to all, I apologize, and thank you for your patience and efforts.  

The election has come and gone as well and I feel it fitting to thank those who have either left their seat or lost their seat on the board and hope they realize their efforts were appreciated. Many positive things were accomplished. Some small, some large, but all worthy. It is time to welcome on our new members. We are faced with many challenges ahead that will take a unified effort to be successful. The new board is diversified and seems motivated to get with it and face the challenges

In the past year we have constantly heard the word “CHANGE.”

Everything we heard or read illustrated a desire to change, and that can be a good thing. Change is inevitable. Change is constant yet not linear, therefore it is hard to measure, hard to see, and likely hard to understand and realize. Still, we all want change at every level.  

Though local change is obtainable, it is not simple.  

We can not obtain the changes we want by complaining, arguing, or simply going to the voting booth.  

There is no doubt we need to change but five people cannot make the changes the mass is seeking. Five people cannot do this alone. Five people can function, get by and exist, but cannot force change.  

As long as our county accepts mediocrity, mediocre is all we will ever be. Our kids are more capable than mediocre in any arena. They deserve opportunity to excel in every arena, and many do. For two weeks now I have tried to attend every event or banquet to see what we have produced in the current school system. We have a very capable and driven staff. We have bright, eager, athletic kids with skills to succeed in the real world at various levels and that was evident at every event.

If we are to change, we have to put a higher value on education, and a higher value in our youth. Nothing has ever been accomplished without passion. If we are to change, we have to seek out and solidify lines of funding for various programs.  

We can no longer expect the state of West Virginia to finance our every want or need. If we are to change we have to value our teachers and give them the resources they need to succeed.

If we seek fiscal independence, establish a higher value in education, and accept accountability, we can change.  This county is ripe to go to the next level.  

This county is facing an opportunity to become an icon among rural school systems.  We are already there on so many fronts.

If we take our places, accept ownership, and instill trust in the people we have elected, we will be successful, and we will change.

Joe Walker,
Hillsboro