LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Parental involvement most important factor in education

Posted

Phil Nobles is one of your best commentary writers, but his recent piece on Cindi Ross Scoppe and South Carolina education prompted me to wade in with the following:

Some of us in Sumter County began our formal education in an old, run-down three classroom "school house" that lacked indoor toilets and which was heated with pot belly stoves. And the three dedicated teachers there somehow successfully managed to teach two grades each!

The school had some issues, but discipline and poor instruction was not among them. We each knew that if we got into trouble at school much more awaited us at home. Despite its primitive facilities, those of us who attended Concord fondly look back on those years as some of our best.

Of course I'm not advocating that schools should lack indoor plumbing or heat with stoves, but a high percentage of us who attended Concord managed to graduate from high school and continue on at Tech or college. I received a degree in education and taught in South Carolina, as did my sister, who also attended Concord.

Granted, there is much room for improvement in education-not only in South Carolina but across the nation. But seldom is the role of parental involvement in their children's education mentioned as a component. Teachers know that the most problematic and/or underachieving students often have parents who seldom, if ever, meet with them in conference. Teachers, administrators and elected officials are very reluctant to mention this sad politically incorrect fact.

With all due respect to Ms. Scoppe's ideas, until more parents become directly involved in their children's education, we can "reimagine" and "reinvent" education until pigs learn to fly without experiencing substantial improvement.

WILLIAM Q. BRUNSON
Sumter/New York City