I do not know Jim Jonas personally, I only know of him. Jonas is the West Fargo High School coach who was recently told he had to resign or face additional punitive action in regard to another coaching position. I do not know what Jonas did to warrant this action. I surmise the West Fargo School District believes that whatever Jonas did required such action.
There is something I do know – I know that the impromptu sit-in held in support of Jonas at the high school today by students during third and fourth periods was a valuable experience for the students that participated. Learning to stand-up for what you believe in – or in this case sitting down – is a part of growing up and learning what matters to you. Even if the kids retract their support for Jonas later when they learn more about what happened, the power they realized today will not be diminished. Inherent in coming together for a peaceful protest is the recognition that their voices and thoughts matter.
I also know that West Fargo School District handled the situation just right. They did not force the students who participated back to class. Students who missed classes were marked absent. The protest was not disruptive of the learning environment in the classrooms near the commons area where the sit-in was held and the students were respectful with administration, so the students were allowed their expression. That requires an awful lot of foresight and patience on the administration’s part and I applaud that. After all, their job is to educate and this was another opportunity for them to do just that.
A group of West Fargo High School students took a seat today and in doing so they exercised their right to have an opinion and publicly show their support for something that matters to them. It doesn’t matter what the object of their support was – what matters is that they felt strongly enough about the topic to engage in a respectful, peaceful way. And that my friends, is what good citizens do.
Day one thousand two hundred and thirty-six of the new forty – obla di obla da