This quote stood out to me because often in today’s educational system states, counties, schools, classrooms are all compared in numbers and figures. It often seems that it is about a figure about test scores or budgets and it isn’t about the children enough.
Reading the end of this novel reminded me of another book that is actually an inspirational novel I read called, “Who Moved my Cheese?” by Spencer Johnson. “Who moved my Cheese?” is about two pairs of mice that are put in a maze and have to run around the maze for days to find the cheese. Once the mice find the cheese they settle down and make a home and become comfortable in their routine. Eventually, the cheese supply runs out and in order to survive they must change their routine, run around the maze to find a new supply of cheese, and make a new home in a foreign place. One set of mice realize in order to survive and be successful, they must move and they eventually find cheese and become happy again. The other set refuses to change their home and ways and eventually die because they are unwilling to change. The School Board in “The Water is wide” represents the mice that were unwilling to change because they fear the change. Conroy and the others trying to implement change and be successful in giving these children a good education represent the mice that are willing to change and move in order to be successful. In the novel in Chapter 12 Conroy writes, “They were old men and could not accept the new sun rising out of the strange waters. The world was very different now.” This seemed to sum up the problem with the educational system on Yamacraw Island and why Conroy butted heads with Dr. Piedmont so much.