Angela Howard | Carrollton Free Press...

Angela Howard | Carrollton Free Press Standard Letters to the Editor

There are 118 comments on the Carrollton Free Press Standard story from Apr 11, 2012, titled Angela Howard | Carrollton Free Press Standard Letters to the Editor. In it, Carrollton Free Press Standard reports that:

To the Editor: The class of 2012 deserves some recognition for all of their support and compassion for a fellow student who will not be permitted to participate in graduation ceremonies in May.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Carrollton Free Press Standard.

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Youngstown, OH

#1 Apr 11, 2012
I wholeheartedly agree with you! I teach at a high school in a neighboring county, and our board allows students who have NOT passed their OGTs, and who will not even receive a diploma, to WALK at graduation!(which I don't agree with!) Will Austin at least receive a high school diploma?

“"You're Ok to me"”

Since: Jan 08

Location hidden

#2 Apr 11, 2012
I'm all for following the rules, but if this letter is factual it's time to bend the rules!

These are extenuating circumstances in which a student was performing scholastically as well as humanely. He should not be punished!

LET FISH WALK !! ><{{{*>
Teresa Fisher

United States

#3 Apr 11, 2012
To Angela Howard, I don't believe we have met but I thank you for your heartfelt letter. I did make a phone call to the school and explained there were days I was too ill to call Austin off. I'm not making excuses, I am stating a fact. The school was aware I am a single mother and Austin was my only child living at home with me. Austin is a very responsible young man. He was also holding down two jobs at the time and supported himself along with maintaining his own vehicle as to not bother me for things most teenage boys expect. I know there were petitions, and the petitions were confiscated. That's ok too. I explained to Austin sometimes we need to take the high road and the school will realize how this might effect your motivation after you have worked so hard. I could not be more proud of my 17 year old son. He is my hero. No, not the perfect student by their standards but felt his priorities were right at the time. Thank you for your kind words Angela and the entire 2012 class for your efforts. When I diagnosed with a terminal illness, Stage IV lung cancer and the prognosis was not bright, you make certain goals to get through another day. That goal was to see my son graduate and go off to college.
Teresa Fisher
Austin's mother
Cynthia Vignos

Canton, OH

#4 Apr 11, 2012
Aristotle said,“Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.”

Speaking as someone who has known Austin Fisher throughout his entire life, I can attest that - at 17 years old - he is more of a MAN than many of the adult males I have known. The lesson here is about character, and compassion. The media glorifies bad behavior from celebrities, politicians and professional athletes, and our children have fewer and fewer positive role models from which to receive inspiration. In a small town, one would hope for some glimmer of redemption from this reality. Instead, we see someone being reprimanded for doing the RIGHT thing.

The goal of education is to prepare our children for living in the real world; to develop cognitive skills that go beyond memorization and passing tests, to instill life skills that involve creative problem-solving and thinking outside the box...while fostering ethical capacities such as compassion and empathy. As a parent, former educator and human being...I feel that the Carrollton school system has failed miserably in this case. They are disappointing not only a student and a family, but an entire community that looks to them for leadership.

United States

#5 Apr 12, 2012
I watched as a distant family member took online classes so they could Graduate High School, the sad but true fact was his mother did all the online classes, this young man Graduated but cannot read or write at a 3rd grade level.
This young man, Austin should in my opinion be allowed to Graduate with his class, he has learned beyond his years in life experience alone. The school board needs to rethink their stance on this one.
Good Luck Austin

Dover, OH

#6 Apr 12, 2012
WOW! It's time to bend the rules a little bit, CHS!

He's been working two jobs, helping his mother through this difficult time AND he isn't failing?! He sounds like a hero to me! This is a young man that knows more about responsibility than most adults I know!

Your community is behind you, Austin!!

Let FISH walk!!

Circleville, OH

#7 Apr 12, 2012
Wow, Teresa, As I read your comment, I am sitting here and crying my eyes out. Your son sounds like an amazing young man. My mom passed away after being diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer after two weeks. I was by her side everyday.
Sounds like your a fighter as well. I can only hope that the school does the right thing and allows him to walk down with his class.
Do you not have any family in the area that can ease the burden? I could not imagine what you both must be going through.
I feel like I need to help you in someway. Please let me know if there is anything you need or anything I can do to help you and your son.
I think the class of 2012 should stand up for him and at least fight for what is right. Good Luck to all of you.

Dover, OH

#8 Apr 12, 2012
Austin, Terry, & family - Anyone who knows you all knows what battles you have fought TOGETHER!! This school board needs to take a step back and realize that if they were ever put in the same position, how BLESSED they would be to have a son who has the maturity and sense of family that Austin has! That is something that school can never teach a child. Not only should they let Austin walk with his class, they should be proud to have a student that has such a huge heart and loyalty to his family!

We are ALL behind you Austin!

Fayette, OH

#9 Apr 12, 2012
Rules have been bent for another graduating senior that was suspended for 10 days. This boy was suspended for sticking people in the arm or hands with a thumbtack and eventually did it to a teacher which led to his suspension. Carrollton rules state that any suspension disqualifies students from attending prom and walking at graduation. This young man is very atheltic and a key player on the football and baseball teams and a coach or two were rumored to have spoken with Dave Davis and now this student is attending prom and walking at graduation. Fair? Not really. Rules are rules but if an exception has been made then Fish should walk too!
Davon Kuttie

Waynesburg, OH

#10 Apr 12, 2012
I hope this story gets to the people that need to allow this student to walk graduation.

My heart breaks and if there is anything that I could personally do please just let me know-being from Carrollton, grad of 1995, current resident and the daughter to a stage IV lung cancer Dad.

I did send this link and story link to both WTOV-9 as well as FOX 8--hoping to help bring attention and the swift changing of minds to allow Austin to walk! If not there will be an overwhelming amount of people standing up for what is right in Carrollton!

United States

#11 Apr 12, 2012
This is the reason I took my children out of that school district. They don't care bout our kids...

United States

#13 Apr 12, 2012
This is the reason why kids and parents alike lose faith in their school systems. When situations like this arise where the school is acting entirely in an unjust manner, students see that as one more reason to hate and place distrust in school and education in general for that matter. As a soon-to-be teacher, I just hope that I find a school district that isn't afraid to listen to its students and concerned parents when things are not being done in a humane and just way. Good luck, Austin!
Concerned citizen

Kent, OH

#14 Apr 12, 2012
I can't believe what I have read in these comments. This is something that should never happen to good people. I always thought that living in Carroll county was better than most and then you hear about the unfairness of this boys situation. Carrollton High School you should be ashamed that you would let this injustice happen to one of your own. I only hope that these comments get to the right people who can change the out come.
Marilyn Reckner Humphrey

Hilliard, OH

#15 Apr 12, 2012
There are ALWAYS exceptions to every rule....this is that ONE. Please allow this young man attend graduation ceremonies. YOU can make a difference in the life of a child.
Herman C Cain

Norwalk, OH

#16 Apr 12, 2012
I read the stories/comments and I also agree this young man is doing the right thing and deserves a thumbs up-I also feel sorry for his mom and their situation-YES this boy/man should be allowed to walk with his classmates-if a guy that purposely did something wrong is allowed to attend then surely a person who has done NOTHING wrong -and in fact went above and beyond what a person his age should have to do-SHOULD MOST DEFINIATELY be allowed to attend-the school board and who ever wants to act like this - and then they wonder why school levies are voted down-WE the people of Carroll County do NOT support STUPID people-they may be college educated but seem to not be very compasionate or have any common sense

Pioneer, OH

#17 Apr 12, 2012
My heart goes out to this young man and his mother. No matter the outcome know in your heart you are the better man.
Chris Fernandez

Dublin, OH

#18 Apr 12, 2012
I have known Austin for only a couple of years & have never even heard him once complain about working or any of what was happening @ home , I lost my mother to cancer @ a younger age & am a cancer survivor & this decision by the school is sad & heartless I think the media needs to get involved more so that more people see that Austin deserves a chance & recognition also for being there for his mother , if a school official missed school to take care of a family member they would have a benefit to help them so as a community we should draw as much attention to this issue as possible, You can't ignore something you have to hear about or see everyday, love u Austin your truly an example of a hero & a son , SiD
Patty Morgan

Magnolia, OH

#19 Apr 12, 2012
This young man should walk across the stage to get his diploma without a doubt. As long as he has passing grades & the credits & was taking care of his sick parent. In fact, I think, someone should give him a standing ovation !!! Praise God for young people like this !!
Frank Sanor

Akron, OH

#20 Apr 12, 2012
This appears to be more about the money the school would lose for his absences than his scholastic deficits. Get real folks. If he has the knowledge , the amount of chair warming does not matter.

Massillon, OH

#21 Apr 12, 2012
I will ignore the school board at this point, past saying that shame on you, as I expect them to be hard headed and try to show they will "stand their ground". Instead I will address Mr Fisher.
I address him in that manner instead of as Austin, because this young man has not functioned as a school kid, but as a MAN. Caring for his mother, supporting them in his work, and still attempting to attend school when he was able. Congratulations to you. If I had to pick an upstanding young person to be an example to my girls, you are one I would choose.
On a side note, the Ohio sponsered FREE ECOT program that my oldest recently graduated from is much like online college with complete freedom of hours and is fully funded by the state and FREE to anyone under 21 years of age, they even provide the computer. If you need a real high school diploma after all this settles it could be a good option, as you can do it at any time and it offers much freedom.
Shame on the school board. Applause to upstanding young people like Mr Fisher who will make this area and world what it SHOULD be though hard work, compassion, and family values.
Prayers and Blessing to you and your mother young man

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