The basic storyline about local schools is doom and gloom. Check out the top story of the Saturday Tracy Press for our most recent example.
It's not that news folks enjoy dwelling on the negative, this is a big story that should have profound effects on not just the present-day jobs of hundreds in our community, but also on the future of our state.
Still, the bright spots exist. If you know where to find them.
I found plenty early Wednesday morning in the West High School library, as eager juniors lined up — resumes and cover letters in hand — to be interviewed by yours truly and several other volunteers who hoped to give the students a small taste of the Dreaded Job Search.
Some were shy. Others were nervous. All were really, really bright. (And one I was tempted to offer a letter of intent to work at the Press on the spot.)
These kids wanted to learn something Wednesday, and I hope they did. But I got a lesson out of it, too.
While many of us haggle over budgets and Big Numbers, there are still volunteers, parents and teachers trying to go the extra mile for students to make sure they've got the best possible shot at success. And there are still students working hard each and every day to prepare themselves for the future.
So yeah, it's pretty dark out there sometimes. But there's also plenty of hope for a brighter tomorrow.