Honors from schools well deserved

Honoring excellence in education is important because it can both recognize achievement and offer inspiration to others to succeed.

Bartholomew Consolidated School Corp. and Columbus East High School did just that by recently honoring an educator and four former students.

Larry Perkinson, Bartholomew Consolidated’s student assistance coordinator, was inducted into the BSCS Education Hall of Fame for his many years of helping students.

Perkinson joined the school district in 1979 and first connected with students in his role as an English teacher. More recently he has worked to help students faced with myriad problems that can impact their ability to focus in the classroom and learn — such as homelessness, abuse, neglect, drugs and alcohol.

The work he does may not be as public as that of teachers in the classrooms, but Perkinson’s efforts are equally vital in helping students overcome challenges and succeed.

Perkinson also has helped the community on a larger scale, as he was instrumental is the district providing assistance and shelter to victims of the June 2008 flood. His quick thinking resulted in establishing emergency shelters in local schools, giving impacted residents refuge.

Columbus East High School’s Wall of Fame gained four new members: Sandy and Bryan Brown, the late Russell Evans and Amy Huntington.

All experienced success in the corporate world, climbing the ladders of the various companies for which they have worked.

However, they also stand out because of an independent spirit and willingness to tackle new challenges.

Bryan Brown, Evans and Huntington all took time away from the corporate world for personal adventures. Brown completed the first successful, unsupported source-to-mouth descent of the Green/Colorado River, spending about 100 days on the water. Evans twice took a year off to travel the world, once with his son and once with his wife. Huntington went on a sabbatical that took her from Chicago’s inner city streets to Mount Kilimanjaro.

Those are life experiences from which students can learn — and important to show the many possibilities that await them.

Perkinson, the Browns, Evans and Huntington represented the school district and especially Columbus East well, and the honors bestowed on them were well deserved.