So after reading in the past few weeks of the money shortfalls of the Morenci School District, I have a few suggestions on the topic along with a few other ideas.
WARNING! These ideas are probably going to be considered far fetched by most people, but here they are.
(1) Bring back a “shop class.” (Oh, I can hear it now, “What? Expose my child to power tools, welders, torches, hammers, etc.? They could get hurt!” Yeah, no kidding. If they don’t observe proper safety precautions or the instructions of the teacher, that’s a good possibility.)
(2) Use students from above mentioned shop class to assist in the repairs needed at the various school buildings and to rebuild buses instead of buying new.
(3) Install “peaked” roofs on the buildings which have flat roofs and use metal as the exposed roof surface. Again using students from the shop class. (When the new Middle School was being planned out I suggested this same idea. The answer I received was there would be some non-flat roof surfaces but a concern for a metal covered peaked roof is ice and/or snow could suddenly slide off the roof injuring a student. Huh, I guess kids aren’t taught about gravity or melting ice or snow any more).
(4) Disband the “Drama Club.” I think there’s enough “drama” in school already. (This in turn, would open up the old shop class room.)
(5) Investigate the possibility of removing Morenci Schools from “No Child Left Behind”. (Start teaching students basic knowledge skills instead of prepping for the test(s). Ask any of them to make change without a calculator, you may be surprised at the success rate, or lack thereof.)
(6) Bring back “Home Ec”. (The last I knew, everyone eats at least sometime in their life. I think this should be a mandatory class, along with shop.)
(7) Eliminate “out of school” suspensions. (Has anyone ever thought maybe some kids consider it a “win” when they are kicked out of school for 3 to 10 days. Instead of “rewarding” them, put them to work. Hand them a pair of hand clippers so they can go out and trim around the buildings, or a paint brush to paint the bleachers, rooms, etc. In the winter, hand them a shovel to clear the sidewalks. I would wager this would stop at least some of the rule breaking.)
(8) Base teacher’s pay on performance. If a child can’t read, write, or do simple math by the second grade, there may be problem. If they can’t read their diploma, there’s a definite problem.
(9) With the onset of child obesity, allow the students to roam the halls and go outside during lunch break. Any exercise is better than none. Plus it may help cut down on any possible fights in the school due to energy being “burned off”.
As I warned at the beginning of this letter, there are going to be people who think these are far fetched ideas. But the last I knew I still have a right to express my opinion no matter how off the wall it may sound to some.
– Russell Davis
Weston Road, Morenci