As a 1986 graduate of Margaretta High School, I have many great memories of my time in Castalia and its school system.
The journalism classes offered to me at MHS helped prepare me for the career I first chose while an elementary student and the extracurricular activities I participated in -- such as sports and drama -- helped me obtain qualities such as team building and public speaking. In all, I was the beneficiary of an education that prepared me very well for college and the work force.
That's why it pains me to hear that the programs that benefited me so much might not continue for future students. It's also why I hope voters in the district will continue to support the Margaretta Local Schools by voting "yes" on the emergency levy on the Aug. 4 ballot.
Many residents look at extracurricular activities as unnecessary -- or not as necessary -- as other areas of the education experience. No one will disagree that basic skills such a reading, math, English, and a solid knowledge of science and history are vital. So too are things like developing self-confidence, finding what you are passionate about and building pride in your school system. Extracurricular activities build those qualities in a student and they need to be preserved.
My research indicates the district has received clean audits from the state of Ohio each year, has implemented several cost reductions and made several consolidations and changes to help save money. In other words, the district's leadership has given back to the community.
My job took me away from Erie County and Castalia, but the founding principles I learned there have served me well throughout my life. It's my hope local voters will give their students a chance to have a well-rounded and complete education by voting "yes" on the levy on Aug. 4.
The author, a former Register reporter and columnist, is managing editor and general manager of the Chillicothe Gazette.