Letters to the Editor

Poor substitute for valedictorian

This is directed towards the person or persons at OHHS who, in their infinite wisdom, decided that naming a valedictorian would be too crushing for our fragile seniors’ egos, but “best boy” and “best girl” were entirely acceptable. And then one of the administrators had the gall to stand up and tell our graduates that the world does not automatically grant them entitlement; that they must earn it? How hypocritical!

The position of a valedictorian is entirely objective as it is based on a student’s GPA. If I, as a student, am “hurt” because someone accomplished more than me, I have recourse: study harder, learn more, and apply myself. It is illogical to be offended by an objective award.

However, the same does not apply to “best boy” and “best girl” as those distinctions are subjective. They encompass qualities that cannot be quantified, unlike academic achievement. This kind of evaluation is the one that hurts; I can improve my grades, but how do I make someone like me or think I’m cool?

In stating that “valedictorian” is offensive, you have made it subjective. Assuming that it is, imagine if the awards in a spelling bee were decided subjectively: In second place we have Johnny, and in first place Janie. Now Johnny actually spelled more words correctly than Janie, but Janie has a much better smile and we all like her more. So let’s give them both a round of applause!

By the way, a quick survey of my son’s fellow graduates revealed that all felt the decision was “stupid”; maybe not eloquent, but accurate nonetheless.

Jen Osburn

Oak Harbor

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