Let’s stick with one system for a while

The results are in for the first round of testing using the new Smarter Balanced Assessment, which is supposed to be a more difficult test using higher standards.


Are you ready for disaster?

It’s not too late, but don’t delay


Hops, heritage festival honors Independence

The Hops & Heritage Festival is one-of-a-kind.


Never too late to keep learning

With the kids back in school, and adults getting ready to start classes, it’s a good reminder that it’s never too late to continue your education.


Schools, cities: time to prepare

As we continue our coverage of the pending 9.0 Cascadia zone earthquake, we asked the cities and school districts, “How ready are we?”


It’s time to teach bullying a lesson

The air has gotten cooler — not much cooler, but cooler all the same — and kids are preparing to go back to school.


Come together for both towns

The joint work session between the cities of Independence and Monmouth councils is about four weeks away, and we are excited to see what they can accomplish by putting their heads together.


Play it safe while summer lasts

It’s nearly that time of year again, when students will be heading back to school.


Your support critical for Polk County Fair

Alright Polk County, it’s time for some “Blue Jeans & Country Dreams” at the Polk County Fair.


Community shines through rainy weather

Often it is when things go exactly opposite as planned that true character is revealed.


I-O awards reflect well on community

It’s award season at the Polk County Itemizer-Observer.


Standardized tests for nonstandard kids

Humans come in all shapes, sizes and colors — and abilities. Students are no different. So why are they all tested with one test while in school?


Another great show for the Fourth of July

Even the threat of historically high temperatures didn’t keep the spectators or participants away from the Fourth of July festivities last weekend.

Tease photo


Our nation’s Declaration of Independence

When, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

Kudos to Falls City volunteers

For a moment last week, we were holding our breath. A favorite part of the Fourth of July weekend in Polk County — Falls City Third of July celebrations — might not happen.