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Letters to the Editor 9/14

September 13, 2000

Letters to the Editor 9/14



Vouchers are not the answer



To the editor:

John Cohen (letter, Aug. 23) is confused.

First, he refers to public schools as "government" schools, a buzzword used mainly by advocates of school privatization. Our 15,000 public school districts are nearly all run by elected boards of local citizens and parents, as is the case with the board for which Cohen is running.

Inadequate teacher salaries are not the fault of teacher unions, which work to raise them. Teacher salaries are dependent on political decisions made at the county and state level. Teacher unions are run democratically by the teachers themselves.

School vouchers are not the answer to improving schools. They would, in fact, make education less efficient and likely reduce teacher salaries. They would also subsidize the kinds of selectivity, discrimination and indoctrination common in nonpublic schools.

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Finally, vouchers have been consistently rejected by statewide electorates from coast to coast, and the most recent Gallup poll (released in August) shows most Americans opposed to vouchers.

Edd Doerr

Americans for Religious Liberty

Silver Spring, Md.




Boys/Girls clubs make a difference



To the editor:

I am writing to tell you about my summer. I had an incredible summer. I spent the summer as the Job Ready Coordinator for the Boys & Girls Club and Western Maryland Consortium.

I supervised 31 teenagers who were junior counselors at the summer programs located at the Frederick Manor and Pennsylvania Avenue units. As well as being their supervisor, I also taught job skills. I had a wonderful time, and couldn't be more pleased with the outcome. The teens learned things such as how to properly write a resume, fill out a job application, and create and maintain a checking account. I feel that the program went very well and hope that the teens will use the skills they learned.

Next week, I will begin my senior year at Shippensburg University where I major in elementary education and minor in reading. I cannot express to you how much my experiences at the Boys & Girls Club has helped me in pursuing my career. After my experiences this summer, I know that I am meant to be a teacher and that I will be successful. After all, I taught 31 teenagers, ranging in ages 13 to 18, skills that they will need for life. Mind you, I did it during the summer, which is a time when no one wants to be in school. If I can accomplish that goal, I can teach children anywhere.

The Boys & Girls Club provides many services and programs for the youth of our county. I think that the Job Ready Program is an excellent program that should be implemented again. The teens learned skills that will prove useful to them in the present and in the future. I am proud to say that I helped the teens attain those skills. I am also proud to say that I am an employee of the Boys & Girls Club and that I am making a difference in the lives of our youth.

Heather Leggett

Job Ready Coordinator

Hagerstown




Hagerstown, a joke of a city



To the editor:

I have just read the article entitled "Stadium renovations considered."

Why continue to waste the time of Suns owner Winston Blenckstone! There will always be a "Wally McClure" out there that isn't happy with anything, and wants things his way or no way.

Mr. Blenckstone, I am a supporter of a new stadium, but I think it is time for you to either sell or move the team to some place that appreciates it!

First the city and county didn't have what it takes to stop the Roundhouse from being razed. Now they can't even decide what to do about the fate of baseball. Whatever happened to the Civil War Museum that was planned for downtown?

Oh let me guess, they couldn't find the funding or just couldn't stand to face the opposition. I now see where they want to add on to the Maryland Theatre. Why don't you people take one project at a time, work on it from start to finish and then start something new?

Is it any wonder Hagerstown is 20 years behind everyone else? People around there don't know whether they are coming or going. They try to do both at the same time!

I recently moved from Hagerstown because of the lack of opportunity, both recreational and financial. I lived there for 26 years and it's sad to say that not a whole lot has changed. Yes, those high-paying retail jobs, the big money making First Urban Fiber and some new restaurants came to town, but as far as real change there isn't much to talk about. Hagerstown does have its good points - nice for retirement, low crime rate, and not a lot of traffic. I am sure there are more but I just can't think of them.

There is a possibility that one day Hagerstown will be a half way decent place...but that day is no where in sight. You need to have elected officials who have vision and the guts to follow through. Until that day comes Hagerstown will be nothing more than some back woods hick town!

Steve Kendall

Myrtle Beach, S.C.




Three against one



To the editor:

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