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June 14, 2014 Letters to the Editor

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As parents we work hard with our children to instill the values that we hold dear. Together with our families, neighbors and churches, we try to let our children know how important honesty, integrity, intelligence, a work ethic and a solid moral foundation are. We rely on our schools to assist us in providing the educational opportunities to allow them to become productive members of society.

Having just graduated the second and last of my sons from Butler High School, I felt compelled to offer my personal thanks and the thanks of many like minded parents to:

• The dedicated and hard working teachers from elementary through high school, both current and retired. Their diligence and professionalism shapes the future and is far too often under appreciated.

• The administrators, from principals to superintendents, who provide guidance, direction and oversight of one of the largest and most diverse school districts in Pennsylvania. Most of us will never know the many challenges they face on a daily basis.

V The office staff at each of the schools who somehow maintain the order and organization of their buildings. I know that they consider each of the students as their own and protect the children accordingly.

• The school board members for making difficult funding decisions while still maintaining robust academic and vocational options for our children.

• The coaches and athletic staff who provide our student athletes with invaluable life lessons about teamwork, how to be humble winners, and the how to work through the disappointment of losses.

• The music and arts directors and staff who promote creativity, self expression, self confidence and excellence.

• The security personnel for making the schools and their campuses safe from those who might cause our children harm. I know their presence in the schools not only provides a sense of safety for the students, staff and parents- but also provides another positive role model for our youth.

• The custodial, maintenance and cafeteria staff who help to create a clean, orderly and well maintained learning environment.

• And last, but certainly not least, to the citizens of the district whose tax dollars support public education. While we all sometimes feel overburdened with our tax obligations, the investment made in the lives of our youth can do nothing but make our community a better place to live.

After all, these Butler-educated students will go on to support our community and nation in varied and important professions. Some will serve in our armed forces. Others will be our future law enforcement officers, doctors, engineers, tradesmen, business owners and leaders. They will build, grow, sell and maintain the products and services that will form the basis of our economy. These students will form the fabric of our community and nation and I for one will rest easy knowing that they have the tools to become the best they can be. I trust that they will gladly accept the privilege of paying forward with their tax dollars the benefit of a Butler School District education to future generations.

I have every confidence that the Class of 2014 will remember the hard work and sacrifices made by the entire Butler community in providing their education and will do us all proud.

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