Skip to content

ProofreadingNCHS Superintendent’s Notes – November 16, 2016

By Ernie Fowler – Nashville CHSD #99

A lesson that our students should embrace is a simple matter. Always proofread before submitting anything in writing.

How many times have we been in a hurry to release a written document and skipped the time it takes to proofread only to be embarrassed by a glowing mistake?

I’ve seen this occur on the professional resumes of folks seeking teaching positions. It doesn’t increase a candidate’s chances of landing the job when they misspell the name of the school. It sure doesn’t help when they address the letter to “Mr. Flower”.

Recently, my little one brought home his lunch menu for the week. I was intrigued by Thursday’s offering of chicken with a side of “porn and beans”.

I was ready to take a personal day just to go to his school on Thursday and have lunch. After all, I’ve always been fond of chicken!

It reminded me of a time when I was typing a budget hearing notice. I was proud of myself for getting it ready to go in such a timely manner. My pride was deflated, however, when I observed that we were not about to have a “public notice” but rather we were going to have a “pubic notice”!

Thankfully, the mistake was caught before it was published in the local newspaper. I’ve also recently received an e-mail about purchasing a t-shirt but the message took a stinky turn when the “r” was left out!

I’ve tried to rely on spellcheck when writing. I’ve learned that spell check is not foolproof. It doesn’t interpret the context of what is being said.

Now, I proofread before, during, and after running spell check.

I check spellcheck!

Many times, I’ll ask another person to read what I’ve written as I’ve learned that a second pair of eyes can catch mistakes that I may have read over two or three times.

While texting, I’ve learned to be careful before pressing the send button. It can be embarrassing when asking co-workers if I need to reserve a “table for six” but the message sent asks if they want a “table for sex”.

A single letter out of place or totally omitted can have can have an impact on the whole message.

Proofreading does take some extra time and energy.

When submitting anything to be viewed by others from homework to job applications, those few additional seconds or even minutes are a good investment.

Catching a misspelled, omitted, or improperly used word may help us to achieve the outcome we desire.

Even now, I can give the readers pubic notice that I am proofing my next column over a big bowl of porn and beans at a table for sex!