COMMUNITY OPINION: SBHS should name buildings after most deserving person

Judy Gansen writes that the new vocational building should have been named after Chuck Gansen.

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What a slap in the face it was to receive the notice that the new vocational building was being named after Steve Delay. I don’t doubt that Steve deserves something for his many years connected to the high school. But this should not have happened.

The building, if named for anyone, should have been named for Chuck Gansen who worked in the vocational department for 33 years and was department chairman for over half of those years. Steve was in the vocational department for maybe six years before moving on.

I understand that Steve’s health issues could be a part of this decision, but Chuck has health issues, too. I’m just extremely disappointed and, frankly, furious that this injustice was done.

Chuck Gansen taught metal shop (now technology) for 33 years at San Benito High School, from June 1971 to September 2004. He was department chairman for about 20 of those years. He also coached baseball and football and was athletic director for several years.

The skills he taught thousands of students (mostly young men) gave them a career path to be able to earn a living and support their families. Nothing against Steve Delay, but he taught wood shop for about six years before moving into administration.

Do we name a vocational facility after someone who had an impact on thousands of students, or an administrator who did his job well but touched the lives of very few students.

Chuck, together with Greg Hearn, kept the vocational programs at San Benito High School alive while schools everywhere were dropping their programs.

When we name buildings after people, we need to look at the connection of that person to that specific facility.

Chuck dedicated 33 years to the students in the vocational and sports programs at SBHS. If this building is to be named for anyone, it should be Chuck Gansen.

Guest Writer