Support public schools
As I round out my first year as one of your Wichita Public Schools board members, I continue to be amazed at the incredible work our students do every day in our 90 plus attendance centers. Each visit to a Wichita public school is a warm, inviting experience. I hear this sentiment echoed often by students, parents, volunteers and constituents. Our neighborhood public schools in Wichita are trusted, honored institutions because of the hard work done every day by our staff and community partners. If you haven’t been to your neighborhood public school recently, you definitely need to find time to make it to at least one special event. You will be impressed and amazed with our kids.
Our public schools are a local economic development engine whose impact cannot be overstated. Over 6,400 certified and classified staff in our neighborhood schools and support centers continue to raise the bar with rigorous professional learning at all levels and job descriptions. I am proud to support employing these highly educated and talented Wichitans in all our neighborhoods.
In 2019, I encourage all Wichitans to pledge continued strengthening of our local public schools through public funding, volunteering, partnering, and, to put it simply, caring about our kids. According to the latest US Department of Education projections, over 90 percent of children in the United States are educated in our public schools, and that percentage is growing rapidly. The kids in our public schools today are our future leaders, employers, employees, coworkers and neighbors. We are all stakeholders in their success.
All of us should be invested fully in our kids, regardless of ZIP code or genetic lottery. I encourage you to help over 50,000 Wichita public school students dream, believe and achieve every day. I sincerely thank you for the privilege of being one of your representatives.
Ben Blankley, USD 259 Board Member, District 1
Resolve to thank
New Year’s resolutions are a tradition for millions of Americans and hopefully lead to making healthier choices.
This year, I adopted a different type of resolution. I committed to hand-writing notes to 10 people each week who are doing something to make Wichita better. The notes were for major accomplishments that impacted our community and for small but routine tasks that are often a necessary part of the process. In the beginning, I had to really think of 10 people to thank, but I quickly realized that many, many people are striving each day to make our community a better place to live, learn, earn, play and pray. I rarely sent just 10 notes a week, often doubling the amount because I didn’t want to let good deeds go unnoticed. I found myself looking at my community in a different way and being more appreciative for simple tasks that improve the quality of life for all.
In 2019, grab some stationary and stamps and write notes to thank people for doing what they do every day, often times without being recognized. You might be surprised how it changes you, your view on our community and those around you.
Becky Tuttle, Wichita
Maybe I’m wrong in my opinion but Wichita and the state of Kansas have missed clear financial success by not cashing in on “The Wizard of Oz.” No theme parks, no street names, no annual festival honoring a movie that reminds you that “there’s no place like home”.
We have an opportunity to align Wichita with this timeless movie by naming our new team the Wichita Wizards. And tastefully undertaken Oz could be interlaced with our new ball field. I’m not suggesting we call the new stadium Emerald City, I’m just suggesting it be incorporated.
Patrick Wiesner, Wichita