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Hats off to the grads

Over the past several days, 272 students in Butler County graduated from high school, and now decisions will be made.

Some have already made commitments to colleges and universities, and others will go out into the work force.

But the bottom line is, they have all made it beyond a major milestone in their lives, by completing their prescribed "first job" in life: to gain an education.

A veteran firefighter and instructor once told me that the only thing constant is changewhich has become apparent to those that have made it successfully through the past 12 years of school.

But the problem is that although there has been much improvement in the education system, emphasis is still on some of the same principles it has always been onmoney.

Parents support their children in school, mostly by choice, but also because of a legal responsibility.

And although the system as a whole has seen improvement, priorities have become crossed up along the way.

The budget proposals should reflect better the priorities that constituents adhere to, and once education and health issues are supported, there may very well be room for other expenditures.

As this reporter has said several times during the past school year, the schools in Butler County are, as admitted by administrators, teaching students to pass the Stanford Achievement Test (SAT).

This actually is a double-edged sword.

While it gives bragging rights to the educators among their peers across the country, and also gets more financial support placed into the school system as a whole.

But the system receives a black eye when students have excelled in every aspect of their education, including making great "Stanine" averages on those SATs (which means the teachers have passed their' report cards, as administrators have so aptly put it), maintained honor roll status, and, by all intents and purposes, passed the required curriculum, including gaining the 28 Carnegie units, but cannot get past an exit exam.

Perhaps the emphasis should once again be re-directed to educating the students, instead of teaching them to pass a teacher report card.'

That's my take on recent actions taken by the school board.

On to another, happier subject.

At 6 p.m. on Wednesday, the City of Greenville will cut the ribbon and officially open the new ball complex located across from Tiger Drive on the west side of town.

Much preparation has been made, and many people have been working for months to make this the premier facility it has become.

Now all that remains is for the throngs of athletes and spectators alike to come to the facility, and revel in its splendor.

City Parks and Recreation Director Jerome Harris has said this facility will eliminate many problems in the programs of his department, citing that there will now be enough fields available for the many area teams to make use of.

Harris also mentioned that there will now be more fields available for tournaments, and invites those interested to contact his office.

I have recovered from my initial lobster' effects, and have even begun to recline in those illuminated planes known as tanning beds again, but I am now more careful.

I have even taken to wearing shorts, in hopes that the natural sun will keep me at my bronzed Adonis' bestand then today (Tuesday), didn't it cloud up and rain?

Oh well, guess I'll just take it as it falls.

I have been strung from here to yonder lately, as my lovely wife has been down in her health in the hospital.

But, in the care of very talented and learned physicians and nurses, I feel confident that she will soon be up and running againany prayers from readers to that effect would be greatly appreciated.

And so, I have come to the end of another chapter in the great adventure of life, as another week passes by.

I'll be looking for you all at the fields, and if you should happen to come to the new sports complexes on Wednesday, you'll find me out in "Deep Left Field."