Thursday, March 12, 2009

THE VIEW FROM THE BOTTOM OF THE HILL: Supporting Schools in a Snow Storm!

The weather in Spokane has been crazy cold. One minute the sun is out and it is 20 degrees. Another minute it looks like a blizzard.

The days leading up to the March 10th school levy votes found the weather to be very unpredictable.

Now let it be said that I live in the Spokane School District, I teach in the Community College district, I have family teaching in the Deer Park School District (son-in law Ryan Farrell), and my daughter Jessi and her husband Rog teaching in the Mead School District.

Let it also be said that I have been a teacher for 43 years and have CONTINUALLY experienced the insanity of putting the welfare of schools up to a vote in a levy procedure.
There is much talk about children being a priority, and yet we don't have secure funding for their education. One year, when I taught K-12, I went door-to-door to get people out to vote so we would have books to give the children in our classes. Frankly it makes me boiling mad.

However, the system is the system and my grandbabies attend the schools impacted by these levies so it was time to matter the weather.

March 9th I took my District 81 sign from our yard and in the snow went to the bottom of Ray Thor, a busy intersection. I literally jumped around waving my sign at 6am, grinning at voters to remind them to send in their ballots. Now you might think this is odd behavior. However this is one of my usual spots for waving signs to the electorate, be it a presidential campaign or school levy! However this time I was out there in a bit of a blizzard! :) No matter! At the end of the day I want it said that I VOTED and that I encouraged others to vote...aka. making announcents at my church at the end of the church service on Sunday!:) I also called voters I knew in Mead and Deer Park. "Hi! It's Linda...I'm sure you've voted but if you haven't"...that kind of a drill.

God bless my Nana and my Mom who taught me to be an ACTIVIST, not an "It's not my job!" kind of gal! :) Have I mentioned that my Mom, single-handedly, got a group of drug dealers out of the University District in Seattle, Washington and my Nana, who was an elementary teacher herself, took a group of teachers from Montana to Washington D.C. to protest the Vietnam War because that money was needed for education? I come from a long line of tough, proactive , "I have a voice" women!

I love this country, and I want to exercise the vote that many women fought hard to give me.
Those gutsy women took on the "you can't have a voice 'cuz you're a girl" establishment, and I'll be darned if I'll miss the chance to make my voice known!

So the view from the bottom of the hill on snowy Monday and freezing Tuesday felt pretty darn great when I saw, to my great relief, that all of the levies had passed. I even told one of the night crew at Safeway (I see him every morning at 5:15am as I get my espresso and head to school) how thrilled I was that the levies had passed. He told me he had voted against schools and he then had to listen to my entire lecture about property values, children should always come first lecture. Poor guy didn't know what hit him! :)

My Mom and Nana are smiling in Heaven to know I'm carrying on that legacy!

God Bless! I'm off to school...and the best job in the world! :)
Love Linda


jessithompson said...

I thought about you on Monday morning as I was out there with my sign. I definitely got 'that' from you! I love you and thank you for teaching me how to stand up for what you believe in! XOXO

Kim said...

THANK YOU!! As a fellow educator I'm right there with ironic to vote for kids! (or not vote!)
I'm proud to say I was out waving my sign two days before I had Katie!

And...what a blessing all levies passed!

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