Public education needs a little pigskin power

Published 12:00 am Sunday, September 14, 2003

Tribune editorial staff

Perhaps second only to religion, football will likely be the biggest topic of conversation today. And, come to think of it, for the next several weeks.

Whether the subject is Ohio State's triple-overtime victory on Saturday, Ironton's win against rival Portsmouth on Friday or updates on the dozens of other football teams of local interest, pigskin talk will abound.

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Fans and spectators will relive the receptions and talk incessantly about the tackles. Football, from professionals down to children's recreational leagues, is big business. And Americans love it.

We can't throw stones; we live in a glass football stadium, too. We love football, too.

But imagine what would happen if we could harness the power of the pigskin for a minute.

Think about how interesting the world might become.

Imagine a week in which conversation centered on things of public interest. Rather than detailing how Jenkins' reception lifted the Buckeyes over the top, imagine if we as a community could talk about education in the same manner and with the same level of interest, enthusiasm and passion.

It is such a foreign concept for many of us, imagining the change may be difficult for us to do.

Think how improved our education system would be if teachers and administrators were as glorified as ballplayers and coaches. Consider the level of improvement our schools and universities would see if each and every football fan became an education fan.

Would we even need massive state testing if everyone in a community dove in to help education with both feet first?

As this weekend winds down, we urge you to stop and think about our public education system each time the subject of football comes up. The schools are open to help and have a number of volunteer programs to help channel assistance from the public. Becoming involved now may score our community educational touchdowns for years to come.