Well-intentioned program is sending wrong message

To the editor:

I would like to comment on the article in The Sentinel of Wednesday, Nov. 25, concerning the character counts program. The article states that this program was designed by Heidi Welham, assistant principal Mifflin County Middle School.

In this program students receive a ticket for good behavior. This ticket makes them eligible to possibly receive a prize.

One paragraph in this article states and I quote “Welham along with teachers have noticed that students go out of their way to do positive deeds just to get a ticket.”

I do not feel this program teaches good character at all. On the contrary, it promotes a mind set of I’ll do what is right if there is some reward in it for me. The paragraph I’m quoting in this article actually confirms that.

Assistant principal Welham I must say, that I think Jesus has a better take on what is actually good character than you do. In Luke Ch. 6 V. 31 the script “And just as you want people to treat you, treat them in the same way.” He makes no mention of being rewarded to do this.

Teachers and administrators in schools who are good role models for students as far as character is a good thing.

I do not feel, however that it is the schools place to attempt to socially encourage good behavior in children by dangling a carrot of rewards and personal gain in front of their face.

I suggest schools leave the building of good character in children up to their parents. It’s their responsibility and with the help of God they will be equipped to do a much better job than schools.

Mark A. Turns Sr.