Friday, September 26, 2008

I just love this story

James Haug of the Review-Journal has an incredibly entertaining piece in yesterday's paper about a functionally illiterate school board candidate -- endorsed by the teacher's union no less! -- whose website was riddled with misspellings, bad grammar and a few other missteps we usually don't sanction in people in charge of major educational institutions.

The candidate, Deanna Wright, seems utterly baffled as to why this is a problem and surely feels she's being picked on by the newspaper. I disagree; serviceable writing ability seems like a reasonable prerequisite to becoming a trustee of a multibillion-dollar operation, don't you think? Read it here and decide for yourself.

The R-J wisely saved a pdf of the site and houses it with the story so that it could live on after the candidate fixed it, which she has done. Even so, Wright's site is worth checking out anyway for its sheer lameness. I'm particularly fond of her opening Flash screen. It's admirable that she wants to get involved, but that's what the PTA is for. And hey, if she plays her cards right someday she could be on the Republican presidential ticket. Ya never know.

The whole thing reminded me of one of my favorite R-J stories from my tenure in Haug's job covering education for the newspaper. The Clark County School District had just created its first website back in 1997 and the mother of an incoming kindergartner called to point me to it. Here's the start of my story from June 3, 1997, which you can find here:

To enroll you're childeren in kunderfarden, it is improtant and nessary to bring a coppy of a utility bull, even in outlaying areas.

Or so read the World Wide Web sites of the Clark County School District, which included those misspellings and dozens of others in instructions for how to register for school and how to interest children in reading.

It was so appalling that the mom decided to find the money to put her kid in private school. Good call. Kind of cute, though, to see how we wrote about the Internet as this newfangled thingie a scant 11 years ago.


Anonymous said...

Uh, Steve, you have a spelling error on the first line of paragraph 3. Must be a Freudian slip?

Jeff in OKC


Why jeff, you MUST be mistaken. Look again. :-)

Jay said...

Did anyone inform her that there's this thing called "Spell Check"?

Troy from Las Vegas said...

This is truely scary.

Anonymous said...

Truly, even. :-)

Anonymous said...

Damned glasses. I'm calling the eye doctor tomorrow!

Jeff in OKC

JIM J said...