By Richard Schwinger, Hamilton
I agree with the facts presented by Dee Gibney in her letter offer to the editor and published in the Star on July 14.
As an educator, my qualifications were of earning a Masters degree in both regular education (social science) and special education (emotionally disturbed) – all ages. If my lessons in the Detroit public schools would have repeated CRT claims – that people of color have limitations in learning – my employment would have come to an end!
The school I worked at required all staff and students to present picture ID to enter the building. This was the most dangerous neighborhood in Detroit. The moms supported these conservative restrictions, to better insure the safety of their children while attending middle school. The building itself was unused, and purchased from the Catholic school system to better promote safety while learning. The principal was tasked to hire the best staff available. Throughout the school days, the classrooms were unusually quiet and orderly. Very boring! I asked a student why this was so. His explanation was profound as he fashioned his hand into a gun and simply said, “Boom boom!”
Frequently during the school day the sounds of automatic weapons could be heard in the community, as citizens practiced marksmanship. Very few of the local residents were wild game hunters. To get to the school on time and avoid holdups and delay, many of the staff accentuated their vehicles with 9mm’s, .38’s and occasionally 45’s. As a group, the staff supported one another and racial differences went unnoticed.
To illustrate how well the students behaved as a group of 35, each year I took them on a trip. Our destinations included a farm (as I was a homeschooled farm child until the age of 10), a beach (swimming), a military air base, a day of learning at a one room pioneer schoolhouse, a Detroit Tigers baseball game, the Shrine Circus, the world famous Henry Ford Museum, and many other destinations. Hopefully, the students of the Bitterroot Valley will also experience the interesting and challenging learning experiences as the children of a big city.