Jan. 16, 2011: Our readers write

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School board members deserve support
It’s safe to say that local elected leaders have seldom faced a year like 2010 and the outlook for 2011 is equally challenging. The members of the Elizabethtown Independent Board of Education have worked to preserve the district’s ability to educate our children in the face of a massive state budget shortfall and tough economic times at the local level.
This financial crunch requires thoughtful — and difficult — decision making, as well as the ability to sort through facts and figures. At the same time, Dianne Cooper, Paul Godfrey, Teresa Harris, Tony Kuklinski and Guy Wallace are also likely to be sifting through test scores, monitoring achievement gaps, making sure teachers are getting meaningful professional development, keeping tabs on school facilities and dealing with myriad issues that can pop up with little warning.
January is when Kentucky observes School Board Recognition Month — it’s an opportunity to thank these leaders for the many hours they put in as the link between the community and its schools. As evidenced by the issues listed above, the job requires more than just showing up for a monthly meeting.
With their work to set district policy and prioritize spending, the board has a direct impact on the ability of students to learn, achieve and to be successful once they graduate. That’s a powerful motivator for them.
Our community is fortunate to have these individuals on the Elizabethtown Board of Education looking out for its children, doing a job that is probably far more involved than most people realize — and likely more involved than even they expected when they began their pubic service.
As they face this year of uncertainties, these board members deserve our support during School Board Recognition Month and throughout the year.
Gary French
Superintendent of Schools
Elizabethtown Independent Schools