We’re with Marvin Wade: It’s just not appropriate to have a teacher store her family’s belongings in her classroom, as kind-hearted as it seems.

Mr. Wade, the superintendent of schools in Manhattan, recently overruled a principal, essentially kicking out a teacher who had stored stuff at Marlatt Elementary. She did that because she lived in Northview area that remains threatened by potential flooding in the event Tuttle Creek reservoir has to dump water.

The teacher had checked with the principal and had gotten kind-hearted help from colleagues, and that all seemed very nice and charitable.

But Mr. Wade makes a very good point: The school system can’t do it for everyone, so it’s not really fair to allow it for one particular teacher. Furthermore, the public school system’s facilities are not best used that way, and they are ultimately the property of taxpayers. “This is something that’s not the best use of taxpayer dollars.”

He went on: “It was a single, well-intended situation, and I don’t want to fault the (school) administration because we want compassionate people who care about their students and staff. But we have to look at it systemwide. We should be willing to do it for all, but we just can’t do it for everyone, even for insurance purposes.”


It’s often the case that well-intended action, when established as a precedent, ends up creating more problems down the road when it becomes an expectation. Every parent has learned that lesson at least once.

We certainly wish the teacher well, and we know that she didn’t mean to create a problem, and we trust that she’s found another solution. This community is full of generous folks, and we have no doubt she could find the help she needed.

Just not at the school building itself.

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