Letters to the Editor
Highlands TodaySupport Wally Cox
Published: October 24, 2012
Published: October 24, 2012
As a teacher and principal for 41 years in Highlands County, I worked with eight superintendents. All of these individuals were great people and brought their own unique set of skills to the job.
The one factor that was common to all of them is that they wanted to do the best for the students with whom they were charged. Probably one of the most important and difficult tasks these individuals all faced, and Mr. Cox faces, is planning and leading the school system into a future that is constantly changing. Having a vision for the direction the school system should take in order to provide the best education for students and then taking the system down that road, is extremely difficult at best.
Critics of past superintendents and currently with Mr. Cox use their 20/20 hindsight to target their criticism. From my experience and from what I've seen, this criticism aimed at Mr. Cox is extremely unwarranted. In spite of a crashing economy, diminished tax dollars and a slow-festering economic recovery, the school system has not only survived, but continues on a course of providing excellence to students under his leadership.
Based on having served three terms in office, he is the most experienced superintendent Highlands County has had in many decades. During these 12 years of service, he has been a taskmaster with the district budget – a strength developed as a result of previously being the financial director. Most importantly, these years have allowed him to gain insight, knowledge and experience that is invaluable in dealing with curriculum and other school issued on all levels.
In my opinion, changing superintendents at this time and losing Mr. Cox with all his skills and experience would be a tremendous loss as it would not be in the best interest of the school system, its employees and most importantly, our most treasured asset, the students. Please support Wally Cox with your vote.
Stating the facts on Romney
I read a recent letter by Joseph J. Oros who writes: "Everything I say can be proven." He further states, "The truth is he never did an honest day's work in his whole life and he didn't have to." "The story is out that George gave him $100 million to start a business, Bain Capital. A very little known fact, but it's the truth and easily proven."
I set out to look for the truth in Oros' words and couldn't find any.
Bain Capital was founded in 1984 when Bill Bain, Bain & Co., offered Mitt Romney the chance to head a new venture: Invest in companies by applying Bain's consulting techniques. Romney and two partners spent a year raising $37 million, but were reluctant to invest and Romney considered closing the venture in 1985. In 1986 they invested in a company that opened an office supply supermarket in Brighton, Mass., where Staples was born. Bain invested its $37 million in 20 companies and had returns in excess of 50 percent.
Bain's second fund, raised in 1987, used $106 million for 13 investments. The firm organized around funds and fund number 6 in 1998 was the last fund Romney was involved in. Their success and failure rates are about the same. Through the 1990s there were 68 deals and Bain lost money or broke even on 33 of them.
Romney took a paid leave of absence in February 1999 and was listed with the SEC as the CEO. His separation from the firm was finalized in early 2002 and he left with a 10-year retirement plan.
Democrats had control of Congress since 2007 including the first two years of Obama's presidency and nothing was done except the passage of the Affordable Health Care Act. I've already written about the veteran's bill that died in the Senate in 2009. More class warfare?
I felt it was time to answer and counter the rants written by people with poison pens!
Don't believe the negative comments
November 6 is almost here, which hopefully will bring an end to the untrue statements made against Superintendent Cox during this campaign. Some of them have been corrected already.
Another allegation that he was out of the office 97 Fridays was set straight at the Tea Party forum when he explained that, on the Fridays in question, appointments might not have been scheduled while he caught up on other matters, and therefore, his calendar would look blank to anyone checking it. He further explained that because he works many evenings attending board meetings, workshops and school activities, he does take some days off to spend time with his family.
I had always assumed that school superintendents kept the same work schedule as school board employees, but learned from a past school superintendent that, as an elected official, school superintendents receive no vacation or leave. They are literally on call 24/7. Thanks to modern technology, Superintendent Cox is able to use his computer and cell phone to also put in many hours of work outside of the office and to be available to anyone needing to contact him. This enables him to fully meet the constant demands of the job 24/7.
I urge voters not to accept at face value negative statements made during a campaign, but to seek out the truth for themselves. Then vote for Wally Cox, a man who has proven already that he can do the job as Superintendent of Highlands County Schools.
Cox is a proven leader
When going to the polls on Nov. 6, please consider voting to re-elect Wally Cox for Superintendent of Schools. He is a man of incredible competence, extensive job-related experience and sterling character. Wally Cox is a proven leader, the type of person that we desperately need to retain in public office.
Wally Cox is a true professional, a person that has earned the respect and admiration of county residents, educators, community and business leaders, and his peers on a statewide basis. He has served honorably as our Superintendent of Schools for the past 12 years and prior to his election, he worked 24 years in the Finance Department of the School Board of Highlands County. Coupled with his strong credentials, Wally has attended almost every school board meeting for the past 36 years, which should give us all confidence that he fully understands all school board-related issues, concerns and policies.
Wally Cox lives by the belief that no life is truly complete unless it includes service to others. This is evidenced by his involvement with United Way of Central Florida, Take Stock in Children, Highlands County Education Foundation, Highlands Sertoma Club, Sebring Firemen's Association and Junior Achievement. He and his wife, Tricia, worship at Bible Fellowship Church.
When you go to the polls on Nov. 6, I urge you to vote for Wally Cox for Superintendent of Schools. You will be voting to re-elect a capable, caring, accomplished and approachable leader. Thank you for your consideration, and hopefully your vote.
Kevin J. Roberts