Veterans Day 2010 Getting the Job Done

A group of delayed entry program recruits foll...
Some are more enthusiastic than others on Veterans Day|Image via Wikipedia

Rachel Guetta ’13
Opinions Editor

Nov. 11 fell on a Thursday this year. However, it was not any old Thursday—it was Veterans Day. But despite the holiday, Westport Public Schools did not have the day off. Instead, students watched a student-created segment on the morning show, Good Morning Staples.

“I thought GMS did a good job. I thought it was appropriate and interesting to hear what student’s had to say. It was time well spent,” English teacher and Iraq veteran Daniel Geraghty said.

Being in school on Veterans Day should give students and teachers an opportunity to honor those who have fought for our country by attending assemblies or listening to speakers. However, not everyone felt as though this was accomplished.

“I understand not having the day off. I do, however, think we should have done more for Veterans Day in school. A speaker or assembly would have been a lovely way to remember and honor veterans and current soldiers and it would have given more meaning to the day. I do not think that Staples did enough to honor the veterans,” Jackie Appell ’13 said.

According to Robin Custer, Vietnam veteran and quartermaster of Westport’s Veterans of Foreign War Hall, an effective way to honor veterans in high schools is to bring in a speaker.

“I am not sure that lot of kids understand what these young soldiers are going through. I think it would be more meaningful to have someone from outside talk about Veterans Day than having teachers that the kids see in school talk. I think what the students did was good, but there are certainly other things they could have done,” Custer said.

Although Geraghty thought the morning show’s piece was beneficial, he agrees: “If time were spent to bring in and listen to veterans—that would be really valuable. Those veterans are growing old; they are examples of living history. But their history is not in books, so to listen to those people directly would be amazing,” Geraghty said.

However, Principal John Dodig thought Veterans Day was a success. Instead of having one faculty member organize an assembly, students themselves put together the morning show tribute.

“The point of Veterans Day is to make sure kids understand what Veterans Day is and what it means to the nation and to individuals. I do not care who you bring in, the fact that a group of students wanted to make the video themselves, well that says to me that Veterans Day was successful.”