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Education in Rural Kentucky

What did I do about my Problem?

From the fall of 1990 to the summer of 1992, for about two years, I spent a good part of my available time analyzing the school system. I got copies of the school budget and financial records and other school documents, spent hours talking to the school superintendent, (who cooperated with me completely), administrators, teachers, parents, school board members, and local businessmen. I distributed a great number of essays I had written about my efforts and conclusions to these people to try to get support or comments. I attended almost all the school board meetings during that period and wrote my own minutes of many of them which I also distributed. And I began to draw conclusions about problems and solutions.

By the summer of 1992 I concluded that the effort was taking too much of my time for the possible benefits so I quit harassing all those people and went back to my regular work. I had hoped to improve the whole school system, but I could find very little support for that, at least not in the ways that I thought would be effective. There was support for fund raisers for the kids, for raising taxes, for paying teachers more, for attending meetings, and for a number of similar projects. I could not find support for constructing a set of educational goals and a plan for actually implementing them. Perhaps people were unwilling to put forth the effort needed. Perhaps my goals were not their goals. Perhaps I simply was not a good enough salesman to enlist support.

I also concluded that, even if I had found a way to improve the school system, the process would take a number of years to implement. I had already spent two years just studying it. And by the time any results could be expected, my youngest son would be off in college. Since he probably would not return to Clinton County, there would be no benefit to my family.

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Last revised August 21, 1995.

Please send comments to: Duane Bristow (72711.1414@compuserve.com)