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A public , In Support of Teachers By Bernard Rapoport I recently received this letter, which makes some important points that I would like to share with you: Mr. Bernard Rapoport, Chairman The University of Texas System Board of Regents Post Office Box 2608 Waco, Texas 76797 Dear Bernard: As someone who’s been involved in UT’s Outstanding High School Teacher Program since its inception, I’d like to thank you for taking the time to come affirm and celebrate their inestimable contributions. For the 15 years I’ve been involved with UT’s College of Education and countless outstanding teachers it continues to amaze me that so few have identified the channel through which we can begin affecting educational reform tomorrow morning: The outstanding teachers. As businessmen, neither of us could imagine running such a vital businessnurturing, moulding, stimulatWhen I sit and listen to the 11 we heard on Friday night and recall the comments of the former honorees, I begin to imagine what they could accomplish and how many more lives they could positively affectat 125 students each per dayif all 87 were supported by adequate resources on a consistent basis. What could happen if they: Had a phone, computer and modem in their rooms and usage was covered. Had a part-time assistant to handle administrative trivia. Were able to attend pertinent conferences. Were able to subscribe to relevant publications. Were able to purchase the best books, CD-ROMs, videos, and study guides. Could subscribe to software review services and purchase the applicable programs and instruction. Were able to add the latest hardware and receive proper training together with updating both every three to five years. Were able to travel in order to enrich their teaching material and perspective. Were able to make presentations and conduct workshops. etc., etc., etc. In short, these 87, plus those to come, could serve as a catalyst for the changes all too many of our educational leaders can’t see or imagine. Their collective results and influence could become the new paradigm for Texas. The tragedy is that, while everyone waits, discusses, argues, negotiates, compromises or temporizes, we’re losing generation after generation. The problem is even more acute in our state’s valleywhere much of our state’s future leadership is being malformed. Sincerely Richard A. “Porky” Haberman The Vara Company Inc., Austin 22 MARCH 24, 1995