Letter to editor stock art - old mailbox

I have never written a letter to the editor but since Eastern Carver County School's referendum passed on Nov. 2, I want to “applaud” our community for “speaking loudly” for our students.

My hope is that now we can move beyond the divisiveness and rhetoric which has solved few problems. I am a substitute teacher in the district and have lived here for nearly 20 years, having taught in three other districts prior to moving to Chaska.

We have seen classrooms mushroom in size, reduction of many electives and elimination of staff, which have been devastating for schools and students. I firmly believe that our students need more choice in electives as few 14- to 18-year-olds know for certain what “passions” to pursue as they become adults.

Band, choir, orchestra, foreign languages, art, photography, woodshop, FACS (Family and Consumer Sciences) and the list goes on — these electives are vital to the well-being of our children. Math, science, English and history are the core curriculum, but even those subjects have a myriad of class options which have also had to be decreased.

Carver County schools have an excellent reputation in academics, and depriving our young students of more choice is not the way to keep this district moving in that positive direction.

I hope the school board and administration will return to a seven-period day, which will give all of our students more opportunities to “glean” and “grow” into the vibrant, energized adults we want them to become.

Judy Schalow

Chaska

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