As we approach the conclusion of the ninth observation of School Board Recognition Month, I ask that we take a few moments to consider the following lines from the Michael Hoffman film, "The Emperor's Club," starring Kevin Kline as the teacher William Hundert:
"Great ambition and conquest without contribution is without significance. What will your contribution be? How will history remember you?"
Kline delivers an entertaining and compelling affirmation of principles embraced in his private school. These principles also provide the foundation for public schools and society in general.
Hundert, in the film, speaks of civic virtue, character and conviction. These personal qualities among others shape the destiny of mankind. Good school board members possess these qualities. Their lives "go over into other lives," as one former student in "The Emperor's Club" notes. School board members ensure that public resources serve the public good to nurture the development of young people, to sustain the principles we hold dear. Good school board members do so not for themselves or for their own children, but for the community of mankind.