Advertisement

Letters to the Editor - July 31

July 30, 2013

Jamboree attendees served in countless ways

To the editor:

So Carly Rae Jepsen and Train shunned the 2013 Boy Scout Jamboree because of their principles, and President Obama shunned the Jamboree again — for the second time during his presidency. I doubt that these missing “celebrities” caused any sleepless nights for the Scouts during their 10-day, high-adventure camp in Fayette County, W.Va.

Many people don’t know that the current president has been considered the “Honorary President of the Boy Scouts of America” since the group’s inception in 1910. The 2010 Jamboree at Fort A.P. Hill in Virginia was the 100th anniversary of Scouting in America, but President Obama did not attend. What a slap in the face to the organization that its honorary president did not show up for the 100th anniversary. This year was the same story. Another historic Jamboree was held but the honorary president was absent.

This group that has been vilified and disparaged because of its values has a mission “to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Law.” The Scout Oath and Law is about duty and service — things I think all parents would like to instill in their children.

The 40,000 Scouts who attended the Jamboree performed 300,000 hours of community service in five days in the nine counties around the camp. Building bridges, painting, clearing trails, even helping to save a flooded school are just a few of the things these young men accomplished. Helping other people has become lost in our society but the Boy Scouts encourage their members to “Do a good turn daily,” meaning do something for someone without expecting anything in return.

Everyone should realize that these young men, some 2.6 million strong nationwide, do much more for your community than you probably realize. Service projects and Eagle projects serve to better your neighborhoods, and Scouting for Food is a yearly project undertaken to aid local food banks. Many Scouts have become leaders, astronauts, businessmen and U.S. presidents.

Charles Ellis
Martinsburg, W.Va.


School board must follow its own policy

To the editor:

In a recent board of education meeting, board member Melissa Williams made a motion that the board discuss soon how its annual self-appraisal will be conducted. According to The Herald-Mail, this is a policy-driven appraisal, and the board has not been in compliance for several years.

We expect our students and our teachers to adhere to policy, whether they think it is productive or not. If they do not find that a policy is working in the best interest of everyone involved, there is a procedure to follow as far as changing that policy. We have students who are bullied on a daily basis, their self-esteem being beaten down in ways you wouldn’t wish on your worst enemy — yet we can’t get a group of adults together to “improve communication and board relationships” because it’s just not positive enough for them? That is exactly what this policy is for — to take negative issues and turn them into positive forces.

The school board is a policy-making body. Members cannot just follow a policy as they see fit. Doing a self-appraisal every time they have a meeting is not how it is written. It clearly states it is to be done on an annual basis, prior to Oct. 1 of each year.

It would seem that as the policy stands, it is not very popular, but it is still a policy. Either follow it or fix it, but you just can’t ignore it. If students/teachers/parents decided to follow only the policies they liked, I don’t imagine that would go over very well.

Dottie Gruhler
Smithsburg

Advertisement
The Herald-Mail Articles
|
|
|