LETTER: Rockford: keep quality education

To the Editor

One thing I have learned since graduating from Rockford High School in 2008 is the sheer importance of a quality education.

Rockford grads, let’s face it, there is no way we could have solved for X in Mr. Koenen’s Algebra class had we not learned the basics of arithmetic from Mr. Shack. It would have been quite arduous to write a paper for Ms. Merila’s class had we skipped over learning sentence structure with Mr. Pudas.

Along the same lines, it would have been a struggle to get into college or nail that first job interview without a solid educational upbringing in an encouraging academic environment. Although I have been out of high school for a few years now, I am still immensely grateful for the experience I had while I was there because I know I would not be where I am now without it.

Rockford schools provided me with endless opportunities. I was involved in varsity athletics, the arts, leadership opportunities, and was able to try my hand at college level coursework for the first time in a supportive environment. I felt prepared and confident going into college. It pains me to think that due to the lack of taxpayer support, current and future Rockford students may not have as many opportunities as I did. At minimum students deserve to have comfortable spaces to learn in, safe athletic facilities and a strong roof over their heads (and I say this quite literally).

It is clear to me now that successes in life come in stages; each step of the way plays an important role in getting us to the next. A glitch in the system, a step overlooked or a corner cut will throw the whole process off course and compromise the potential. Along the same lines, to slight any student from any one of the fundamental steps of education may ultimately jeopardize their futures.

As many of you know, Rockford Schools are asking for taxpayer support. Rockford graduates and community members who value education join me in voting “yes” to District 883’s Referendum, even if that means voting absentee.


Kayla Altendorf

Rockford High School ‘08