SCHOOL: Reminder on roles

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According to The Press (Wednesday, Feb. 7), Rep. Don Cheatham, R-Post Falls, has introduced a bill in the Idaho Legislature allowing students to have an excused absence from school to play taps at a military funeral.

I don’t question that this is necessary in today’s USA, but consider how far our culture has fallen that this becomes necessary. All that should be required should be a note from a parent stating that the student will be performing a civic duty.

I am reminded of a situation that occurred back in the mid-’70s in Spokane County. My loving wife, Pat, had a surgical procedure that required that she be bedfast. She required bed care for five days and we had five kids in the local school. A no-brainer! Each kid fills in for a day!

My note to the principal was simple: “Ann will be absent on Monday; Steve on Tuesday, etc. Each will return the following school day. They will be meeting a family obligation. Thank you in advance for your cooperation.”

The principal and some of the teachers had a major come-apart. Pat and I stood our ground, as did the five kids.

One of the teachers contacted Pat the following week, and requested that the teachers receive more consideration since their obligation was to educate our children. Pat corrected her very respectfully, but very firmly: “You are mistaken: Your obligation is not to educate our children; your obligation is to assist their father and me in educating our children.”

When our teachers accept parental responsibility for our children, everyone loses — especially the children!

JIM CONNELL

Hayden

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