08/28/08 — A new attitude: Sometimes looks do matter

View Archive

A new attitude: Sometimes looks do matter

Southern Wayne High School's new principal isn't taking any chances that his students will not want to come back to the classroom.

Dr. John Boldt, with the help of his staff, decided that how his school looked was at least a part of how being there would make his students feel.

And he is not alone.

All over the county, custodial staff, teachers and principals mowed, cleaned, decorated and painted in preparation for Monday's opening of school.

And in some cases, the money that was spent to make classrooms more inviting for the students came out of a teacher or administrator's pocket. That's what you do when you put your children first.

And while painting murals or putting up posters might not be the solution to every education challenge -- or to making sure every student graduates with the basic skills he or she needs to survive -- it couldn't hurt to let students know that they were important enough for the effort.

The environment you work in makes a difference. A job in a dingy office that has leaks, damage and other issues is not pleasant. In fact, in some cases, the surroundings you work in just might be enough to make you decide to go somewhere else.

The same is true in a school.

What it looks like is an indicator of the attention and importance placed on what goes on inside.

While Southern Wayne might not have been that hard to look at in the past, Boldt knows a new look can often mean a new start and a new attitude.

It is a lesson we should keep in mind for all our schools as we consider how much money they need -- and when we are going to provide it.

Published in Editorials on August 28, 2008 11:34 AM