Remembering Dr. Grunwaldt
As the old saying goes, the cemeteries are filled with irreplaceable people.
This old saw can cut two ways. One is that it’s a sly way of reminding us that no one is irreplaceable, that people come along to bend down and pick up fallen standards.
But in some extremely rare cases, one’s first thought when we learn of a person’s death is as true as it is well worn: We won’t see their like again. So it was when many Islanders learned that Dr. Edgar Grunwaldt had passed away at the age of 89 on Sunday.
Dr. Grunwaldt led an extraordinary life, from his birth in Buenos Aires, to his immigration to the U.S. as a young man, to his research on the groundbreaking work of identifying the spirochete that causes Lyme disease.
But his greatest accomplishment, and what he will be remembered for here, is being a town doctor on the Island for almost three decades, serving, comforting and caring for the community he loved.
His family said there will be a gathering held this summer to give Islanders an opportunity to share memories and honor one of our irreplaceable people. We look forward to paying our respects.
Summit on the Rock
The Shelter Island Board of Education had a job applicant at Monday’s meeting. After listening to a presentation by the school’s teachers on the striking successes of “collaborative teaching” practiced in our district, visiting Shoreham-Wading River Superintendent Steve Cohen asked, “Do you have any job openings here?”
Mr. Cohen joined other superintendents, including Southold Superintendent David Gamberg, to hear of the progress that collaborative teaching methods produces in students. But the visiting educators also heard how the method reenergizes and refocuses teachers on an almost daily basis to the goals they had when they idealistically entered the profession.
Mr. Gamberg and Mr. Cohen, along with Shelter Island School Superintendent Michael Hynes, were building on their momentum from a week ago when they organized a forum at Stony Brook University with national and international scholars to find an alternative to the mostly disparaged Common Core standards.
Shelter Island was the venue for the second summit of educators interested in not standing pat but moving forward to allow students to not just survive primary and secondary education, but to flourish in college and the waiting job market.
We can’t think of a better place to start than here.