Bonita Vista High school recently lost an extraordinary teacher. On June 27th, Diane Goetz, a beloved IB Economics and AP Government teacher, suffered from a brain hemorrhage and was pronounced brain dead on June 29th. The next day she was taken off life support and passed away.
Mrs. Goetz was an organ donor and even in death she continued giving. Her passing came as a shock to everyone and many tributes were made to her in the form of Facebook statuses and blog posts from both current and past students. Every person expressed how big of an impact Mrs. Goetz had made on their academic and life successes. She was remembered as being selfless, dedicated, and as someone with a very dry sense of humor.
Mrs. Goetz committed a lot of her time to clubs such as Friday Night Live and Key Club, which are major clubs on campus that require their advisors to give up extra time after school. She was even about to start her first year as the Link Crew advisor. She devoted a countless amount of hours advocating against drug use and the consumption of alcohol among youths.
She would spend extra time during lunch and after school working to ensure students were getting the best from their education and extracurriculars. Whether that was allowing students to do test corrections during lunch or helping plan an event such as Red Ribbon week after school, it was all done with no complaints and a smile.
Yet Bonita Vista High school did next to nothing to honor her memory, not even a moment of silence. It seemed like her passing was a taboo subject that everyone skirted around, instead of paying tribute to her and letting her students mourn her loss.
She did so much and got almost nothing in return from BVHS. While many of her former students attended her memorial service over the summer, the students that were unable to attend or didn’t know about it didn’t get to properly honor her.
As weeks pass, Mrs. Goetz seems to become an even more distant memory to administrators and the school. Even when students from the clubs she had previously overseen tried to plan a candlelight vigil in her memory, the administration shot it down. Administrators argued that the memorial service hosted by her family was intended to be the sole period of mourning, and that having a vigil organized by students would redraw attention to their loss. Essentially, the administrators denied students further mourning even when it was still evident people were grieving.
While it is understandable that the school didn’t want to overstep their boundaries with the family, the candlelight vigil would have been set up towards the students and allow them to mourn together.
The pews of the church where her memorial service took place were crowded with people. During the service, only a handful of her students were able to share their memories of Mrs. Goetz and many expressed disappointment and sadness towards the fact that there was not enough time allotted for family, friends, and students to share.
A feature on the bulletin is not enough to commemorate someone who contributed so much to Bonita Vista. A few seconds is not adequate enough to thank her for the years of service and dedication she had given to students.
Everyone deserves to know that we lost an amazing teacher. It makes people wonder how the situation would have been handled if it was a student instead of a teacher that passed away. In times of grief, the school needs to be a united body. In a time of loss, Barons should be able to come together and create a support system for each other when remembering those who have passed.