I had the distinct pleasure of attending “opening day” on Tuesday August 22, 2017 for the staff that serves our four schools in our area, Spaulding High School, the Central Vermont Career Center, Barre City Elementary and Middle School and Barre Town Elementary and Middle School. The day kicked off with a visit from Governor Phil Scott, himself a product of the Barre Schools. He spoke of the impact that staff had on his future after the death of his Dad and the role our schools are playing to help our kids deal with a changing world around us. Staff from each school spoke of the successes and challenges for the coming year. Yes it is a changing world and many area families face challenges. Unfortunately our teachers and staff are inheriting the issues that come with those challenges. Rather than complain about it I heard a very positive attitude and a commitment to turning out the best students possible.
Here are some facts that I learned. Your students at the four schools will be taught by an excellent staff. “Do you know there are 32 current staff who have been recognized by our district as teachers of the year?” Do you know that Spaulding High School will give out more than a half a million dollars’ worth of scholarships this upcoming year?
As a basketball coach I have occasion to visit many schools. There are not many that can compare to the cleanliness and upkeep of our schools and many are much newer.
I heard a sense of pride that acknowledges the blue collar roots of the area and the sensitivity to the areas ability to pay for our schools.
This was not my first attendance at this event but I have made a promise to myself that I need to do my part to make sure that the good things in our area schools get more emphasis. I encourage folks, especially those who do not have kids in schools, to take a minute and visit. I think you will leave with a sense of confidence that our dollars are being well spent.
Finally, it was a breath of fresh air to hear the words of our Superintendent, John Pandolfo, that we all have a role to make sure our schools achieve excellence.
SHS Board Member and Chair of the BSU Board