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Tradition important to community

According to FamilyFriendPoems.com:  “In the western society, many people feel that traditions are no longer needed.  They say that they may have been necessary when we lived in small tribal communities and needed traditions to help form a cohesive group.”  The article went on to state, “The irony is that individuals in our society are likely to feel more isolated than ever before.  Surrounded in a city with six million people may live the loneliest man in the world. With all of our technology to connect us, we see less human contact than ever before. Traditions that bring us together are needed more than ever.”

As I visit our school buildings and talk with staff and students, I agree that traditions such as Thanksgiving are needed now more than ever. 

It saddens me to read the statistics surrounding suicide and depression particularly with our young people today.  I am concerned about our children and their future.  While I am very pleased that our test scores and accountability grade with the state is improving at great measures, I still have concerns about the mental and spiritual condition of many of our children.    

Therefore, I am pleased to see that our teachers and administrators allow for time for our students to recognize and reflect on traditions, especially Thanksgiving.  Thanksgiving is a community tradition that reminds us to honor and be thankful for one another.

This time of year is one that calls us to be present with one another, accept one another and value one another. Technology will not replace this need for human contact, just as a photograph does not replace the person.

During your Thanksgiving events, please take a moment to appreciate the value of the traditions you enjoy and consider the importance of carrying forward such traditions for generations to come.  I also kindly suggest that we all put our phones and technology devices away for a bit during the Thanksgiving festivities and enjoy good old fashion fellowship with those we love. I wish everyone in our school community a blessed Thanksgiving break.

(John Strycker is superintendent of eduction for the Butler County School System.)