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Keep Sto-Rox whole

| Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2012, 8:56 p.m.

The fight in Sto-Rox to save the school district and community identity deserves recognition. Sto-Rox has a school board, superintendent, administration and teachers who care very deeply about the success of students.

The joint effort to improve every aspect of educational offerings in Sto-Rox, led by Superintendent Michael Panza and teachers working together, is instilling community pride through the public schools. Parents and taxpayers should be proud of these efforts.

There are attempts to derail these positive efforts. Don't be fooled by outsiders (Propel charter schools) claiming to offer a better choice. When the board rejected Propel's recent attempt to open a charter school, it did so with good reason.

Panza exposed flaws in Propel's application in a public presentation. In addition to education concerns, there were alarming flaws in Propel's application, including duplicate petition signatures, no letters of support from the business community, and nonresidents (including Propel employees) signing the petition. The board rejected Propel's application for valid reasons.

Propel should be prohibited from submitting another application, not only in Sto-Rox but elsewhere. If any public school submitted a document as shoddy as Propel's application in Sto-Rox, the uproar would be loud.

Parents and community members should speak up and say “no” to Propel. Keep your community whole. Sto-Rox, be proud of what is being done to keep your community and schools viable and visible.

Butch Santicola

South Side

The writer is director of field programs and communications specialist in the Western Region office of the Pennsylvania State Education Association (psea. org).

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