LETTER TO THE EDITOR | Advertising achievements could help SW’s image

Editor,

I’d like to “enthusiastically solicit your input….” But please, before you get to contribute, sit down and listen to me for two hours while I paint a picture of how horrible things are, and while I preach the same doom and gloom rhetoric that has been our refrain for over a decade now.

After I’ve painted the clearest picture possible of how dire our situation is, then (then!) I will enthusiastically listen to whatever it is you have to say. I’m sure at that point you’ll be invigorated, and have the necessary insight to make meaningful and valuable inputs…

What if our mantra was “Look at our innovation” instead of “We can’t, due to declining enrollment.” We need to celebrate the brilliance of our community. Where is information regarding accomplishments of South Whidbey graduates? Where is the Garden project and how the Garden project is a scalable national model? Where is the Maxwelton stream project? The work with the tidelands and the Langley marina? The leadership projects that so many students, para’s, teachers, administrators, and parents have led? Where is the celebration!?

Additionally, we need to recruit. There are programs over town that we don’t have, and never will. There are equally as many things here that no one else can offer! What if there was an effort to recruit kids and families? Exchange programs. Study abroad for a week, a semester, a year? Information sessions on what South Whidbey School District offers, and why and how it’s so badass! What if we did that for two hours instead of preaching the same doom and gloom we’ve experienced for the last decade? Think things would be different then? Think things might be better? I do.

1. Change the rhetoric; create positive propaganda.

2. Celebrate what we have, and what we do, on the school’s website, and in social media, and everywhere we can!!!

3. Recruit.

There, I said what I have to say when you “enthusiastically” solicited my input. Next time, do what you advertise (and follow my advice!), and something might actually get better for a change.

ANDREW NEFF

Clinton