As a former student of Socastee High School, I had the pleasure of being taught by Mr. Bobby Chandler. I graduated in 2005 and went on to pursue both my B.S. in psychology and MA in psychology. I am the direct result of teachers who went above and beyond what was expected of them as teachers. Educators gain passion when they are allowed to participate in their profession and feel as if their views and concerns matter. When someone is treated with blatant disrespect and made to believe that their job is in question it does nothing to boost morale or make that individual feel as if they should be involved in the daily operations of their profession.
How can we expect teachers to incite passion, responsibility and growth in our children when they themselves are no allowed to show the same within their profession?
Also, how does our community grow and build when its members have no place to address education issues (which affect everyone regardless of having a child or not) without a hassle or public spectacle? I must admit, I was under the impression that the school board was the place to address concerns regarding our community’s education system and things pertaining to this area.
If I am bringing up a concern about education in our community I would like to know that it is going to be addressed seriously by our board of elected officials. I am not comfortable with the idea that there is no outside involvement of this group or the superintendent. Parent, community and teacher/staff involvement is the only way that our community will continue to produce high-achieving students and community members.
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I do not see the current policies as being the most effective and productive. Mr. Chandler is attempting to create a conversation about this governance. It is his goal that the community get together and perhaps set a precedent on how to deal with issues that directly relate to the way in which we handle situations that need to change within our school district.
Our school board did a grave injustice to Mr. Chandler when they initially denied his right to speak at a school board meeting. They denied a working professional of the school district the right to have an input on what was occurring within our school district and his place of employment.
The treatment of Mr. Chandler for doing what is within his job description is a shame. This is a man who was going above and beyond for our students. Mr. Chandler is and always has been a role model for me. He deserves a public apology for the way he has been treated because his character was publicly questioned.
The writer, a 2005 graduate of Socastee High School, lives in Surfside Beach.