Letters 2.25.04

Comments from our readers


In my opinion our public school system is a source of nostalgia.

What is needed is a cost-efficient educational system that gives our youth an opportunity to receive a technological education which is good for them and good for our community.

The current teaching system, or paradigm, reminds one of an old-fashioned mining company.

The teachers are the union miners, the administrators are mine operators and managers and the school board acts as the mine's board of directors who represent to owners, i.e., the tax-paying public. The children are the raw material.

I submit this is the high cost-way to organize an educational enterprise.

Consider this alternative paradigm. All persons receiving a baccalaureate degree from a recognized university automatically receive a teaching credential, which is good for life, K-1 through K-12.

Upon a professional's retirement, they could apply for vacant teaching positions at the schools located within their community. Most of them will have a retirement income with benefits, thus they would be given an opportunity to give back to the community by teaching our youth for a minimum wage salary.

The children get the benefit of teachers with years of practical real world job experience from persons who are motivated by the thrill of teaching success, not a union salary and benefits.

I am merely suggesting a modified version of the volunteer fire department scheme as a radical departure from the status quo that could provide a better education to our children at two-thirds the salary cost.

I am hopeful this radical idea will foster strong opinions and a dialogue. We must start talking if we are ever to move away from the teaching paradigm that has been in place this past 100 years, a system whose ever increasing union labor rates would have killed it 20 years ago were it a private sector mining or manufacturing company.

Charles Blackwood


Food bank

How amazing is our community! I think that we have the best in the world. So does all of our staff.

Our churches, our local organizations and other local concerned citizens that donate to us so we are able to keep our doors open to feed our people that are badly in need of food.

We thank you all from our hearts.

Thank you all again.

Doreen Quick,

site manager

Dallas Food Bank


This letter is for those of you who go to the store and steal from those of us who are honest.

My husband and I went to the grocery store in Independence Feb. 19 and I could not believe what I found. I was in the cereal section of the store looking for some cereal. I saw where Cheerios had a free book for children inside.

The book could be seen in the front part of the box. When I got to the last box on the shelf behind all the other boxes, I discovered that the box had been opened and the book had been removed from the box.

I took the box to the clerk and she told me that this happens all the time. It not only is dishonest, it raises the prices on items in the store and the honest people have to cover the cost of the lost items from those who steal.

As for the person who took the book out of the Cheerios box -- and you know who you are -- when you took the book, you ruined the box so no one could purchase it, as the store would not sell something that had been tampered with on the shelf and if I had known that you wanted the book so much, I would have gladly given you mine.

Also, if this letter is published in the paper and you find it, my message to you is: How do you feel now?

Rita Henry



My wife and I spend the months of December through February in Fredericksburg, Texas, for our job. We have done so for six years now.

Upon Mr. Bush's departure as governor Assistant Governor Rick Perry took over. Since that change, the nearly full-time interest of the government and citizens of Texas has been directed at somehow fixing the educational system of this state.

The school building are usually pretty nice and up to date but the performance ratings for the schools of Texas are abysmal at best.

Texas is near or at the bottom of the nation in such areas as the graduation rates, test scores, teen pregnancy, childhood poverty and uninsured children.

I cannot for the life of me understand why Mr. Bush concluded he could be the "education president." He was surely not the "education governor."

Fred Brown



Dallas is so lucky to have a business like Graphic Latitude.

Owners Rick and Esther Lieberman recently helped Kids Inc. Basketball raise money through the sale of t-shirts and sweatshirts. They helped with the design and worked very hard to get the order completed in a time crunch.

All the orders were accurate, pre-sorted and bagged for us. Thank you Rick and Esther for working so hard to help local schools and sports.

Tami White



We don't get extra money when we buy what we need and don't have enough money to pay for it.

Our health insurance was more than the raise we received.

When I went to school, we had 45 to 55 children in one room and one teacher. No substitutes.

We listened and learned our numbers and letters. Our schools are a disgrace. We can teach them how to use condoms and have sex, but don't teach them respect.

My neighbor girl went to school in Monmouth for one year. She didn't know her numbers and letters and couldn't read first-grade material.

Her mother asked why. The teacher replied, "You didn't teach her?"

Last year, our 15-year-old neighbor boy couldn't add or subtract without a calculator.

I say it's time to get teachers who will teach. Some teachers are a disgrace.

I heard that a kindergarten teacher asked children to go home and ask mom and dad to show them how to make babies. This is not the kind of school we need for our children.

People need to know how their money is spent.

Cities widen sidewalks that have been here many years. They cut out parking and add death traps to street corners. Sad how money is wasted.

Winnie Davies



We would like to know if anyone in the community has information about an incident last month.

Sometime between 7:30 a.m. and 5 p.m., my son-in-law, Craig Hall, had his three-wheel bicycle parked in the Main Street Pizza/Partnerships in Community Living parking lot (the corner of Main and Catron streets in Monmouth).

He parked there to take the CARTS bus to his job at Goodwill in Dallas. While he was at work, someone intentionally damaged his bicycle beyond repair.

This is his only means of transportation. This incident has been a significant hardship for him.

Thankfully, Jon at Jon's Bicycle Shop in Monmouth has allowed him to purchase a comparable bicycle and make payments on it.

We greatly appreciate all the help Jon has given Craig and Vanessa now and in the past to keep their bicycles in good running condition.

If anyone has information about this incident, please call 503-838-3976 so that the person responsible for this vandalism can be held accountable.

Janice Hoida



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