HAPPY EASTER!

- published 3/27 (Larry) - unpublished ?

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Opinion Letters

I am sincerely hopeful that the good people of Macon County, especially those involved with education (both educators and parents) will consider very mindfully the sound and right-minded advice Tom Hill offered in his letter of Nov. 26, "How to improve our schools."

There are two methods by which we learn, in the halls of learning (our schools) and in the conflicts of life. We must make sure we provide our children the very best of the former in order to prepare them for when they inevitably come face to face with the latter.

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As I write this, the stock market is hovering around record highs. The Federal Reserve is keeping interest rates low to stimulate borrowing and investment. Corporate profits are generally high and many companies are sitting on record amounts of cash. This should be the sign of a booming economy that is creating lots of jobs. In reality, the economy is stagnant and unemployment is stubbornly high. So what is the problem?

The problem is demand. The people who would buy the products that these companies make don’t have the money to purchase them. It’s fairly simple. There are two parts of a consumer economy: Producers and consumers. If there’s no demand for the products, companies are not going to invest in more capacity and jobs. In this economy, it’s the consumers who are missing. While the wealthy certainly consume, there’s a limit to how much stuff they can buy that will stimulate the core economy.

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Right now there will be many playing the "Blame Game" over the below average performance in student testing by the Macon County School. Usually teachers and parents each blame the other. Administrators blame inadequate funding, etc.

Here is an suggestion on how to improve the quality of education in Macon County: From kindergarten through at least the eighth grade, require that a parent accompany their child through a full day of school once a month, strictly as an observer. (Considerations would be needed for parents with multiple children as well as allowances for those with physical impairment.) This would place a parent in each classroom, all day, almost every day. A clearly labeled “Parent” seat should be provided in the back of each classroom. Both parents should be encouraged to attend and an evaluation should be requested at the conclusion of each visit. On each report card, there should be a grade for the attendance of the parent - passing or failing.

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The leaves on the trees have been pretty this year and now, they’re falling. Why? What’s really going on?

Don’t ask the neighbors with the leaf blower, rake, burn pile or black plastic leaf bag. They are too busy cleaning up to understand that dead leaves are the gifts of the trees to the earth below... to provide cover (we call it mulch), food and nourishment and finally to break down to bring new life and fresh healthy soil. Ho hum .... just another amazing recycling job by the creator.

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published: 10/18/2013
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