To the Editor:
A poll in the Fort Dodge Messenger (10/4/12) motivated me to write this editorial. The question posed to their readers was "What is your overall view of your county sheriff?"
Early in this school year there was a law enforcement officer in Emmetsburg High School. Students came into my classroom and asked in their terms, "Who's getting' busted?" Times have changed. Eight years ago Russ Jergens was a common sight at the high school. As he walked down the halls students would greet him "Hi, Russ." He was a valuable resource for me as well as the rest of the educational systems in the county. I did not hesitate to call Russ any time my classes had questions pertaining to any aspect of the sheriff's office. He would always offer the answer and usually would be in the class the next day to see if students were satisfied with the answer. These were teachable moments that were effective beyond the test.
Whenever Russ was in my classroom, political parties were not part of his agenda. Student education and his relationship with the students were his only concerns.
I have taught in Palo Alto County for many years. At the present time I could not accurately guess students' "overall view of their sheriff." While Russ Jergens was in the sheriff's office, students' "overall view of their sheriff" was very positive.
(signed) Tom Hoover