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Naval Junior ROTC Chief William Stratmann’s sudden departure
from San Benito High School and from the county raises some
Naval Junior ROTC Chief William Stratmann’s sudden departure from San Benito High School and from the county raises some questions.

Why did the popular instructor skip town with only two months left in the academic school year, and why won’t the school administration shed any light on his departure?

One of the founders of the ROTC program at San Benito High, Stratmann’s work has influenced many students, according to the other ROTC instructor at the school. The program, sponsored by the Navy in cooperation with the school, began at the outset of the 2002 year and enrollment has stayed high.

Yet, since Stratmann’s exit, officials at San Benito High School have kept quiet, refusing to release much detail about his departure.

That only raises suspicion about the entire affair. It makes no sense for a respected instructor to up and leave a program he helped initiate and then have school officials completely refuse to comment on any of it.

Personnel issues should be respected by school officials, but so should the public’s right to know what is happening in their schools and their community. If he has done something wrong, then the public should be made aware of it because other serious matters could surface. If it’s personal, like an illness or a family matter, officials should just say so and be done with it.

So what happened? Where is Stratmann, and why the quick ticket out of town?

Those are questions our community deserves answers to – especially the parents with children at the school and, even more importantly, the students attending San Benito High.

When people in the know refuse to give answers to simple questions, it raises suspicion. No one knows why Stratmann is gone, besides school officials, but everyone is open to speculate about the reasons. That could harm Stratmann’s reputation as a respected teacher.

Regardless of what drove Stratmann away, the school needs to disclose some of the basic facts of his departure, or, find Stratmann and let him do it himself. Whatever the case, our public institution, operating largely on revenues from the tax-paying public, should come clean and shed some light on this perplexing event.

Surely, someone in the San Benito High School District knows more about why Stratmann left in such a hurry than has been reported. Speak up and let the community know what happened.

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A staff member wrote, edited or posted this article, which may include information provided by one or more third parties.


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