It's an absolutely beautiful day here in Cedar City. I just finished delivering my last set of voucher packets to our PTA representative, who was instrumental in making this whole thing happen. Her early estimates are that we are going to meet a 15 percent benchmark - that is, we gathered more than our 10 percent goal. This is incredible and speaks volumes about how Iron County parents feel about our neighborhood schools.
As I was driving back home and through my neighborhood, I couldn't help but stop and reflect on some of the conversations I had with neighbors and friends. I have received criticism on this blog for my "pollyanna" viewpoint of Iron County's public schools. But I can tell you for certain that many of the people I have spoken to over the last several weeks agree with me - Iron County schools truly are wonderful.
All of the people involved in this effort have one thing in common - we want the very best for our children. For our opponents to say otherwise is wrong. I don't think I saw any "union thugs" out there, and I looked high and low. I agree with a post I read somewhere on the Amicus that the term "Union Thug" is getting kind of old... and it really does not apply to our Iron County effort. In my view, the UEA does not hold any political power here whatsoever. Parents are the involved and active voice - we have an excellent PTA, a fabulous school board, and many parents who are involved and participating in their children's education.
Am I a Pollyana? Perhaps. But I'll tell you, it was heartwarming to see so many Iron County parents advocating for public schools. And contrary to what advocates may tell you, this is NOT a partisan issue. Many many many registered Republicans put their names on the referendum to oppose vouchers. Many whom I spoke to feel that Utah schools do incredible things and achieve excellence in academics with limited resources. By putting their signature on the referendum, these good citizens were standing up for Utah's school children.
Now I'm going to go do something I have not done in a long time. I'm going to go work in my yard, plant some rose bushes, and enjoy this beautiful weather.