09/04/10 — New life: Changes at Goldsboro High suggest a whole new view of future

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New life: Changes at Goldsboro High suggest a whole new view of future

The first couple of weeks at any school are going to be full of promise and optimism. So, it is not surprising that the staff, students and parents at Goldsboro High are diving enthusiastically into a new school year.

And if that were the only evidence that we saw at Goldsboro High of a new direction, a new feel, we would not be ready to comment, not yet.

But this time it is different.

There is already accountability -- students who understand that they are a big factor in determining the course of their futures, and teachers who are dedicated to making sure they have the skills to capitalize on the opportunity.

And there is a principal who is not going to put up with any nonsense, any excuses, any effort other than the best these students have to offer. He has set rules, set standards and is already demanding that his Cougars live up to the excellence he knows they are capable of.

And for the first time in a long time, there seems to be a new breath, new life, a new spirit at Goldsboro High -- so much so that freshmen are signing a pledge to graduate on time, and teachers are ready to hold them to that promise.

The problems have not gone away -- and they won't. There will still be children whose home lives are not the best, and conditions that will conspire to lead them to other pursuits will still be a threat to their futures.

And there are still some students who are not quite where they need to be and who will have to work extra hard to catch up.

And there will still be some students who are determined to spoil the chance of success for others.

But this time, it seems, the students believe in themselves. They are not willing to settle for just getting by -- and they are not going to allow anyone to take away their chance at something better, at an education.

They are not allowing excuses for themselves or for their classmates -- and they are serious about making their school one of the best.

And this time, many people think, they are really going to do it.

So, Cougars, here are the secrets to showing this community just what Goldsboro High is capable of achieving:

• Don't let anyone make excuses for you or expect anything less than your very best work. And demand the same excellence of yourself. Don't get lazy or complacent. See just how much you can achieve. And ignore anyone who tries to get you to do otherwise.

• Ignore the ramblings of fools -- the kids who think they are popular, the ones with the answers, but who really are on a road to nowhere. Stand up to anyone who gets in your way of a good education and a chance at college or a career. Don't allow peer pressure or any other student to dictate who you are and whom you will become. Don't just say "no" to drugs, alcohol, but to any bad influence or something you know is wrong. If you would not do it if your principal or your mother or father was standing there, it is the wrong choice.

• Respect others and yourself. All the rest is easy, if you manage to accomplish that goal.

This community has many Goldsboro High School graduates among its residents. They are watching to see how this plays out and hopeful that this is the year that a new, brighter future begins for their alma mater.

It looks like the pieces are in place to make that happen.

All the students and staff have to do is work hard -- and believe.

Published in Editorials on September 4, 2010 10:51 PM