MCC alumni, parents, need to vote May 2

April 30, 2023

MCC alumni, parents, need to vote May 2

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Dear Editor,

I am an alum of Mason County Central, class of 1997. I moved to Mason County in 1991 and began attending the seventh grade at MCC Middle School. I met my husband there when one of the teachers, Mr. (Jim) Faulkner, asked him to show the “new girl” around. He said then that he knew that I was the girl he was going to marry, and we will be celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary on May 2. What will we be doing? Going to the polls to vote “YES!” for the MCC bond.

I have three daughters who have attended/do attend MCC. My oldest two have graduated and my youngest daughter, Sara, is currently a junior. With my last child on the cusp of leaving MCC, why do I care what happens with the bond? And why would I care so much that I joined the bond committee to help get it passed? The answer is simple – I owe MCC and the faculty/staff so much. As a community, we all do. Bus drivers, coaches, and teachers give us so much. They are asked to not only teach kids and keep them safe but also to challenge and inspire them. And these are things that will stay with them for the rest of their lives.

I asked my daughters to tell me something that a teacher did for them so that I could write this letter. Two of them mentioned Becky Gerhart. They both told me that she shows how much she cares about them and what happens to them. Emily said that when they were reading 1984 (George Orwell) in class, Mrs. Gerhart let her read Brave New World (Aldous Huxley), also. They sat and talked, in Emily’s words, “for a long time about what all of it meant and the parallels that I was seeing between it, 1984, and the US at the time.” Emily also mentioned that Mrs. Gerhart once wrote her a note. It was just a little line of understanding and empathy for some feelings that Emily was experiencing. Emily still has that note and took it with her to college.

Sara talked about Caleb Schultz, the new band teacher still in his first year of teaching at MCC. She said that he has taught her a lot about drum maintenance and “music stuff.” He forced her out of her comfort zone to make her a better musician. It was announced last week that Sara will be the drum major for the fall. She worked so hard, and Mr. Schultz was there helping her every step of the way. She hopes to return to MCC after graduation to be a drum tech for Mr. Schultz and share everything that she has learned with future students.

I could keep going with these stories. Rebecca’s sixth grade teacher Mrs. (Mary) Sheffler encouraged her to read Fablehaven (Brandon Mull), a set of fantasy books, when she was struggling with wanting to read. Now she is an avid reader and has even written some short stories. I could talk about Mr. (Jerry) Genter or Mr. (Ted) Winkel, and how they were always up to debate and listen to my opinions or my point of view. Or my husband could talk about Mr. Ingraham or Mr. Taranko and how they showed faith in him in shop class. I bet everyone reading this could add a story, too.

What does all this have to do with the bond? We owe this faculty, as former students, as parents, and as members of this community. We owe them the tools to be able to do what they do. We owe these teachers the facilities and technology to make our kids competitive in whatever future they choose. We owe the bus drivers a plan at pick up/drop off that will allow them to get our kids to and from school safely. We owe coaches athletic fields that make them proud of their school when other schools come here to compete. Most of all, we owe them the absolute safest environment that we can provide them so that they don’t have to worry about whether or not they will have to lay down their life for our kids. I am hoping that some day there will be a third generation of Abbotts that attend MCC. I would love to be able to show them what a school looks like when the community cares about them and the faculty that teach/coach/inspire there. Please vote yes on May 2!

Rachel Abbott

Branch Township

MCC Alum

MCC Parent

MCC Community Member and Taxpayer

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