I don't usually go public with my feelings about stories, mostly because no one really cares what I think, but I felt so strongly about this one, I couldn't resist.
It's about a groundbreaking new approach being taken by the new principal at Lafayette High School in Buffalo. Naomi Cerre decided the school's football team was going to forfeit its first game against Fredonia. Why? 12 out of 19 players failed to keep their grades up last year.
Hurray for her!
This woman has a big job. Lafayette is ranked as a persistently low achieving school, and she's been in charge of turning that around. She's off to a good start.
The school has new teachers, and a new motto: Pathways to Excellence.
Cerre understands that you can't be on the path to anything if you don't hold kids accountable for their actions.
Despite poor grades, many of these players chose not to go to summer school. I can see why. They probably figure their talent on the field will help them skate through school. It happens far more than we want to admit at high schools and colleges all over the country.
We are doing a great disservice to these young people when we don't put academics first, no matter what's at stake.
Too many of us in society admire brawn over brains.
Naomi Cerre is taking the first step to changing that mentality, and I hope she takes it all the way to the end zone!