Improvement: The achievable goal

Published 9:00 am Thursday, August 24, 2017

By Will Collins

I have talked in the past about the need to “move forward” — not only at a pace to keep up with the changing times, but at a rate to stay ahead of the game.

In many ways, our great community is trying to react to the growth that is all around us, but there are areas where being proactive is needed.

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In any situation where improvements are needed, it starts with quality education. We have all heard the saying “our children are the future” and that is a certain fact.

Many of our youth will move on from Clark County in pursuit of their dreams, while a good number will stay here. Regardless, if they are well-prepared, they will make great future leaders of our city.

Excitingly, improved education is exactly what we are seeing in our school systems and it should do your heart good, just as it does mine.

I mentioned that my degree is in political science but I also majored in secondary education along with a double minor in history and geography. I’m certainly not tooting my own horn here, just simply stating how important education is to me.

Superintendent Paul Christy listed several areas of improvement the Clark County Public Schools demonstrated, including all-time records set by GRC, such as graduation rate, ACT scores and college readiness. It is such a comfort when our students can compete with any other system in the state in order to prepare for their future.

It is no accident our schools have been producing outstanding results. It is due to the hard work of the entire staff by using innovation to bring what was envisioned to reality.

They saw the need to compete and improve and rather than sitting back and hoping for the best, they made it happen.

This is exactly the approach our entire community should take as we move forward: Envision what we need, and then make it happen. While our youth are growing up strong, it is up to us to pave the way. Our future is now.

We need leaders in office, regardless of position, to look at the futuristic picture and introduce innovative ideas to match.

Each individual should play their part but work as a team to produce positive results.

The educational portion is in place, let the rest of us join in.

We have officials who are in charge of lowering the rate of crime here in Clark County. They need to introduce programs that give people opportunities to make better choices in life but when crime occurs, they need to be tough on said crime. Sure, people make mistakes, but it needs to be accounted for in a way that will deter a desire to repeat. Remember, everyone has a choice.

Many say our increased crime rate, including drug dependence, is a result of limited opportunities compared to communities that surround us. This is very true and we need leaders who will address this as an opportunity rather than an obstacle too tough to overcome. This is something we will see in the near future.

In addition to those upholding the law, we need our city council to govern in the same manner. To enact ordinances that will encourage business growth and increase opportunities. There have been instances in the past where businesses chose a nearby town to make an establishment in response to a particular regulation we had imposed.

In the end, there is nothing wrong with our community that can’t be fixed if we put our minds together with a common goal of improvement.

I, for one, will do anything for the betterment of Clark County, even if it is simply offering up some encouraging thoughts with my weekly column.

Just like any community in America, we have positive attributes and areas of opportunity. But that is how we have to look at it: areas of opportunity in which we should never run from.

As Abraham Lincoln said, “We can complain that rose bushes have thorns, or we can rejoice that thorn bushes have roses.”

After all, it’s not that difficult to trim the thorns, it just takes work and dedication to achieve something beautiful.

Political enthusiast Will Collins is a lifelong resident of Kentucky and has called Winchester his home for the past 20 years. He can be reached at