Cuts unwanted, but needed
There is no question that since the day last summer that Dr. Gary Mathews took the reins of the Newton County Schools System that he has been off and running at full gallop.
During that time, he has maintained an open-door policy and kept all stakeholders informed of his intentions on how best to put the school system on a strong fiscal footing.
Mathews has reached out to the community and spoke to civic clubs like the Rotary and Kiwanis. He’s been refreshingly candid in discussions of the state of our education system here in Newton County.
This past week he released a list of potential budget cuts needed to make up for losses in state funding and in money generated locally through property taxes.
If you missed that story, it can be seen at covnews.com and there are follow-ups on the superintendant’s proposals in today’s paper.
Make no mistake, cuts in our education system are the last things that most of us want. But as with life in your household, cuts must be made when the paycheck doesn’t cover everything that you want or need.
We have said this before: We have confidence in Dr. Mathews’ attempt to stabilize and then grow our education system.
We hope that every taxpayer in the county takes the time to read and understand what is happening with our schools.
Your voice and actions are necessary to help restore the Newton County school system to the rankings it once enjoyed.
We will not have positive economic growth in this county unless we have a first-rate education system to support it.
Idle time and hungry bellies can lead good kids to do bad things. That’s why the Rev. Hezekiah Benton of Bethlehem Baptist Church and church member Hazel Bostick got their church involved in starting a youth feeding and enrichment program two decades ago. Ms. Bostick has since passed away, but the program continues to serve kids in need.
On Sunday, the program was honored as the recipient of the MLK Trailblazer Award. The award is bestowed each year to a person or group that makes a difference in the lives of citizens of Newton County.
It’s a high honor, and well deserved. Thanks much to the Rev. Benton and to his congregants for all they do to keep this ministry going.