We, the citizens of the Cuyahoga Falls City School District, need to get together and support the superintendent and the board in their efforts to improve the schools. They are working on a plan with input from the community that will improve education by giving it a career focus. This will not cost us a dime. Change is necessary for teachers, students and staff. We only need to get on board and change our attitude.
Educational success is measured by what our children learn in school. Ultimately, this translates into how well they find gainful employment and grow into solid citizens after graduation. Finding gainful and meaningful employment in our ever-changing world requires skills and knowledge and the ability to keep on learning.
Bottom line: We need to change to adapt to the changing world.
I have lived in this community since 1976 and raised four children who graduated from Falls High. I have served on the board of education as president, and as a trustee and former director of the Cuyahoga Falls Schools Foundation. The current administration has my support because it has the courage to admit we need to improve and the ability to design and implement an improvement plan.
We need to improve student achievement. We have a board and superintendent with the vision and energy to do just that. Let us focus on what we can become and put recent history of negativity behind us.
The choice is ours. We can engage in petty character assaults and accomplish nothing but a big stain on our community, or we can get together and become the best that we can be. The board and the superintendent are our leaders, but these are our schools.
Benjamin Franklin said it best: “We must … all hang together or, most assuredly, we shall all hang separately.”
Courage of a whistleblower
As an attorney representing Davidcia Stubbs, I naturally read your June 8 article about the financial troubles facing her former employer, East Akron Community House (“Nonprofit under fire as groups pull funds”).
Stubbs is the quintessential whistleblower, someone who reported what she believed to be wrongdoing, and then subsequently was fired. The facts of her case can be argued in the courtroom; however, on a larger scale, it seems that newspapers across the country are filled with stories that fit the same pattern: Employees complain about a practice they believe to be illegal, and those employees are subsequently terminated.
In many stories, the person or persons engaged in the illegal activity keep their position or — often — they are even promoted. If the employees are fortunate, perhaps they prevail in a lawsuit and obtain reinstatement or some compensation.
A simple Internet search on whistleblowers will produce stories of this kind from coast to coast. We must ask ourselves as a nation why whistleblowers are attacked and why the illegal actors are so frequently protected. What message does this send? Questions will be punished. Silence will be rewarded.
It takes tremendous courage to step forward as a whistleblower, and I have been proud to represent many such individuals.
Community matters in Barberton
Regarding the June 9 column by Bob Dyer, “Barbie’s new home: Barberton”:
The Beacon Journal gave Dyer free rein to insult the community as well as the citizens of Barberton. Not only is the information in his column an overgeneralization, it is also condescending to the hard working and loyal citizens of the “Magic City.”
I grew up in Barberton and although I now live in the Cleveland area, Barberton will always be considered my home. I went to Barberton High School, and like many others I graduated with, I have gone on to pursue advanced education. I have two sisters who went to Barberton High and who also hold advanced college degrees.
The people of Barberton are not “single-minded,” but rather hard working and loyal to a fault. When my father passed away during my junior year of college, the community of Barberton carried our family through a very difficult time. Thanks to the Barberton Sports Boosters, I was able to get a scholarship for college, which greatly contributed to my first year of tuition. My younger sister was able to receive a sizable scholarship from the Barberton Community Foundation, which helped her pursue an accounting degree.
The people of Barberton are not “celluloid heroes, spending their lives pretending to do things.” They are wonderful and caring people, who actually are doing things.
Just take a look at the Paint Your Heart Out Campaign and the contributions of the Barberton Kiwanis Club and Senior Citizens Club to the community. Take a look at all of the Barberton High graduates who have gone on to wonderful things and who choose to remain homeowners in our town.
I am still close with the people with whom I attended Oakdale Elementary School. And that is the nature of the community: lifelong friendships and people who genuinely care for one another, even through the roughest of times.
If Dyer had spent any amount of time getting to know the people who live in the “Magic City” he would know his insults did nothing but unite the citizens to stand against a bully who hides behind words but who has probably never spent any extended amount of time in our wonderful community.
I hope the citizens of Barberton choose not to cancel their subscriptions, but rather keep subscribing to the Beacon Journal and light it on fire, as Barbertonians are apt to do, just like our founder “The Match King” did so many years ago.
For many, there is no recovery
The Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis has stated that less than half of losses in personal net worth in the U.S. has been regained, despite the rising stock market. For four years. As you remember, Americans lost 40 percent of their net worth in the credit crisis. Most of them.
The real estate market just did not come back, despite a knee-jerk pop, though tiny parts of the U.S. had more meaningful recoveries. There are many who say it will never come back because it was too bloated.
Capitalism really has a vicious side.
John D. Ambrose
The city of Akron reportedly will proceed with an $890 million project mandated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Ohio EPA to reduce sewer overflow into rivers. Some 300,000 sewer customers will pay increased water bills (“Sewer deal,” June 4).
Meanwhile, fracking operators, some of whom have been caught dumping contaminated water and even stealing water from ponds and lakes, have a business-friendly, anti-regulation administration on their side. The beat goes on.
Teacher and her union
I read the May 24 Page One article “Local educator to lead Ohio union” and kept wondering what was the intent of it. Was the intent to show her dedication to the children in the state and how she intends to better their future through hard union work? Or was it “I love teaching, but I love the unionized labor more”?
Is Becky Higgins going to be making less, more or the same with this transition? Is her intent to work hard to get the tax money, already deemed illegally taken by the Ohio Supreme Court from taxpayers, back to all Ohio schools or just to save union jobs? Or is her intent just to stop the right-to-work bill from being passed by the nonunion, nonworking but taxpaying citizens?
Taxpayers recently watched some Ohio teachers listen to their union while students, some in their senior year, gained nothing. But you’ll never know what the teachers won by being out on strike, supposedly for the betterment of the students; they can’t talk about their settlement.
What good will this transition make for Ohio school and/or our students? Read the article, and maybe you’ll see it will do nothing. As the advancement in her union standing continues, we wish her and the union the best, as we know the school systems won’t see any improvements.
What will this union leader do for students and taxpayers? This was not mentioned. Was this because it was not ever Higgins’ concern? But right-to-work was.
Message in a label
Buy “Made in America”?
I noticed my vegetable soup said “a product of Poland.” The pineapple slices said “product of Thailand.” The pie filling and orange segments said “product of China.”
What are these labels telling me?
Ophelia S. High