Earlier this week, Liberal High School received a prestigious distinction by becoming an AVID Demonstration School.
To become a model for other schools to follow, LHS had to perform at a level the public doesn’t always expect from this profession.
Too often the public sees education as simply an expense or an additional tax and operated by people who get a large number of days off.
The reality is somewhat different.
Liberal didn’t have to implement programs like Literacy First, Success for All or AVID. These programs require more instructional time, increased planning time and a greater commitment to the students.
The administration didn’t have to encourage the use of these programs. It would definitely be a lighter workload if they did without them.
Even if our staff was motivated enough to implement these programs, they certainly didn’t have to go the extra mile to become a Demonstration School for AVID.
But they did.
They invited the extra work because they knew it would help achieve the ultimate goal of providing better education.
While we may focus too often on the rare teacher that does not live up to expectations, the reality in a vast majority of the classrooms here in Liberal is the education process is accomplishing its goal from dedicated professionals with a desire to succeed.
Liberal should take pride in knowing that the local high school has been ranked No. 2 in the State of Kansas by U.S. News and World Report. We should take pride in the work done to change the culture at LHS in the past seven years for the students with the AVID program, and now Liberal will be a model for others to follow.
Having a school system dedicated to the advancement of the students will make Liberal a more attractive choice for those seeking to locate here.
The work done by the administration and instructional staff should be commended and recognized publicly.
As always, there is much work ahead, but it is time to recognize these landmark accomplishments.
When you see one of these teachers or administrators, thank them for going above and beyond in a push for academic excellence.
They have earned it.