Last Friday as I was preparing for Sabbath, my wife, who operates a small Adventist Summer School program, walked in the house after opening her personal mail, visibly becoming disturbed over the recent revelation of a pay cut of $2000.00, for the up and coming academic year. Needless to say, as her mate and pastor, I became disturbed over the matter because this is a second attempted pay-cut by our superintendent. I challenged my wife to immediately call the conference president at his home, prior to Sabbath, and make him aware of the matter.
As she concluded, in her conversation with the President, as was the case last summer—the SWRC administration was completely unaware of such an action by the superintendent. THIS MUST STOP!!!
I was very hesitant about coming to you, the constituents, and chose not to, prior to Constituency Meeting in May, because I thought that closure had been brought to the matter when I dealt with the issue privately in June 2010. But as you can see, it has surfaced again. There is an old saying, “Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me.”
As a pastor and worker, I am calling on the president and the SWRC Executive Committee, to give our education department some attention and study. I will go out on a limb and say; I Winston B. Stanley, PhD is “the most” supportive pastor in the conference on issues related to our education department and the superintendent—including conference administration as well. This is a fact! God knows, I do so for the kids, and for Jesus’ sake only, seeking absolutely no merit. There are teachers out there, in this conference, who put their all on the line, not because of the pay (because I do believe teachers in our conference are under-paid), but they do so for heaven’s sake! To give principals/lead teachers an undeserved and unnecessary pay-cut, at this time, in the history of Adventism and the nation is completely un-called for.
On a Personal Note
I watch my wife, spend six of seven days a week, giving time and effort, attempting to make her schools local program a success. I have watched her spend family and vacation time, preparing individual student lesson plans, recording student data in a not-so friendly Educational Computer Program (Ren Web), leaving home at 6:30 A.M. and returning at 8:00 P.M. She transports kids, sacrificing her all to purchase a personal special vehicle (suburban) for school purposes. To reward her efforts with a pay cut of $2000.00 is laughable and in-excusable. If anything, they should have given her an increase rather than a decrease in pay for her and other teachers like her, who make these sacrifices.
The most shocking element to this issue is that this decision is being made without executive approval! No pastor or worker can make a serious decision like this at the church level without school and church board approval, how this can be done at the conference administrative level blows my mind as a pastor. Can we get some clarification in our by-laws?
As I stated, this is a second attempt by the Education Superintendent which warrants some public attention by our new administration. Enough is Enough! I do believe there are some teachers who are fearful of speaking out, because they are fearful to lose their jobs—especially in these times. While I want to continue supporting our failing educational system here in the southwest wholeheartedly, I cannot continue any longer to sit idly by, quietly in humility, watching and saying nothing while this goes on. God expects better and more from His church.
Mr. President and the Executive Committee, now that you are in charge, please address this matter. In closing, I would not have brought this to your attention publically if closure had been brought to this issue last year.