To the editor,
I graduated from Lawrence High School in 1968 and have many memories of my years there. Some of these memories are good and some not so good. I can remember a math teacher who thought coaching basketball was more important than teaching math, an American government teacher who thought teaching was telling the students to read the textbook and another teacher who thought denigrating students in public was a fun thing to do.
I can also remember those dedicated to teaching, to preparing their students for the future, to inspiring students to do their best. The person who stands out most among the dedicated was Stan Roth.
Stan demanded quality and attention. He did have a unique teaching style and did bounce erasers off the heads of sleeping students. I can remember one time he tried with me but I caught it and threw it back. I can also remember being scolded for not taking notes. I can also remember the lectures and field trips where he revealed the mysteries of God's creations; crawling through caves to investigate the wonders of a hidden world; assisting in various studies and the wonderful field trip to Florida which introduced ecology and life in the sea. The list goes on and on.
It is the teachers like Stan Roth who stand out as islands of excellence in a sea of mediocrity. Seeing Stan Roth treated so shabbily for expressing reality so clearly reminds me of Salem, Mass., in the late 17th century or of Galileo or Copernicus. To those who refuse to believe what science reveals about God's wondrous creation, I tell you that you had better not fly west too far or you might fall off the edge of the world. To the rest of you who live at the end of the second millenium in mind as well as body, I suggest that you protest the kind of antediluvian thinking demonstrated by the treatment of Stan Roth.
Now, as I get ready to fly back to Japan where I have lived for the last 18 years, I would like to express my thanks to Stan Roth for his years of dedication and my sorrow that the students will no longer be allowed to benefit from his unique type of teaching.