AND THEN AGAIN…… Tamara Pettit

……The controversy over the Director of Personnel position in the Hancock County Schools continues.  Rumor is that the Hancock County Education Association (HCEA) will add its voice to those displeased with the decision of the Board to appeal the Administrative Law Judge’s ruling to have the position vacated and bid out.  The HCEA is rumored to be conveying a vote of ‘no confidence’ with both  Superintendent Dawn Petrovich and the Board at Monday night’s meeting.

….While I know  faculty at State colleges and universities take votes of no confidence in a president, those votes are then forwarded to the institutions’ Board of Governors or Board of Trustees, I’m not sure what the next step would be for the HCEA.  I don’t think it would be communicated to the State Board of Education since every school board operates autonomously and that board hires and fires the county superintendent.  While the vote of no confidence may not have any legal outcome, I do think it will highlight the educators’ opinion of the Board’s actions and could very well influence the outcome of the May 10th election where three board members will be selected.

…..The next race to be featured in KNOW THE CANDIDATE  will be the Hancock County Commission race where three Republicans are vying for the Clay District seat.   This is a good opportunity to look at the issues and learn about the platform of the candidates:   Ted Arneault, Jr., Paul Cowey and Brett Lemley.  I’ve been pondering what you need to know.  I think the platforms are important.  We’ve all heard “I want to make it better.”   Good for you, don’t we all, but the question is how.  I also have a few key issues which have faced the Commissioners over the past few years about which I thought I’d ask.  I’m sending the questions tomorrow and plan to feature the answers on April 5.  Any ideas for questions or issues, send them to me at [email protected].

…..I truly believe “all politics is local” and kinda have the experience to prove it.   Elections are won one voter at a time.  It’s amazing to me then that four of the local newspapers owned by Ogden will host a “meet your candidate” event at Wheeling Country Club for the region.    The event is scheduled from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. and the invitation tells candidates it will be an opportunity to meet with editors and reporters.  I can’t fathom how the number of  candidates invited would have time to explain his/her platform and views to the group in that time frame. 

….I think the “Friends with Paws” program introduced by First Lady Cathy Justice is great!   Bringing therapy dogs into schools will be an absolute plus for students, especially those in poverty-stricken counties.  We already know that the reading with canine friends’ program is the local libraries is a hit.  Everyone needs unequivocal love and just like Mr. Rogers, a dog loves you “just the way you are.”   Many students are from families who struggle with having enough to eat every day, so having a dog to feed and care for is not an option for them.  Kudos to whomever thought of the program!

…..I’ve wrote about this before, but while I don’t agree with Governor Justice on every issue, I respect his love for West Virginia.  It is apparent that he and his wife, Cathy, care deeply for the State and I applaud them both for initiating this program.   It will make a difference.   While the article said the counties to get it will be those with the greatest poverty level,  I’m hoping it will make it way to Hancock County.

…..I did wonder about the logistics of the program, however.  Therapy dogs are notoriously well-trained, but one wonders who takes the dog home at night.

…..We all are a composite of the unique experiences we have had.   Every once in a while though a memory of years ago comes up and smacks me in the head.  We were in Wheeling Friday to meet with our accountant and as we drove through downtown Wheeling, Bill asked me if I remembered when there was an Elby’s on a corner.  Did I remember?  Heck, yeah!  Not fond a fond memory though!   I once stood on that street  corner dressed as a leprechaun wearing only green tights and a body suit with a little leprechaun tunic selling green bagels on St Patrick’s day.   It was a not very well thought out promotion when I worked for WTRF.  We all know that St. Patrick’s Day  temperatures can plunge and there were snowflakes falling as  I shivered and hawked the green bagels.   I was accompanied by then WTRF News Director John Price (who was dressed his suit, men don’t wear costumes) who would become Gov. Arch Moore’s Communication Director  in a few months.    I left as well and  returned to West Virginia Northern Community College for four more years as community relations coordinator.

……WVNCC is celebrating 50 years since being founded this summer.  Yep, it was 1972 when it began as West Liberty’s branch at Weir High School and many lives were changed by a community college who enabled working adults to pursue a college degree.   I was one of those who returned to college in my thirties.  I am forever grateful for the opportunity.