Veteran teachers are vital
Re: Sept. 6 column, “Rookie teachers provide energy, fresh approaches.”
When Esther Cepeda describes all the committed work and sacrifices of rookie teachers, doesn’t she realize that these same responsibilities apply to career teachers? Experienced teachers must continually rekindle enthusiasm to be effective, but their experience is invaluable.
For instance, one of the founders of KIPP, Dave Levin, was an intern at Teach for America. He was failing miserably in his high- poverty, Houston school with only six weeks of summer training. One day Levin visited the classroom across the hall and met Harriet Ball, a master teacher in her forties. He studied her techniques and incorporated them into his practice, as well as those of master teacher Rafe Esquith. He and Michael Feinberg later founded the KIPP schools on those principles.
The success of novice teachers depends on the experience and wisdom of career teachers. The ideal school blends the expertise of the master teachers with the enthusiasm of the best newbies. We learn from each other. If teaching becomes a rotation of two-year novices, as Cepeda advocates, we are in trouble.
GOP offers dystopia
If extreme Republicans (and you know who they are) had their way, everyone would or could carry a gun on his belt or in a purse; there would be absolutely no abortions even when the fetus is horribly deformed; limited vouchers would replace Medicare; undocumented people would have no chance for citizenship; there would be little or no regulation of the air, water, and environment; food stamps, Medicaid, and the minimum wage would be things of the past; there would be “their kind” of prayer in every public school; the national income tax would be eliminated; and the so-called “free market” would solve every other problem. So, Texans, if this is the Texas you want to live in, just continue to vote Republican.
Herman I. Morris
The lamest show on earth
Under the big top: a secretary of state unable to answer the basic question of which nations side with the U.S. in bombing Syria. A sideshow behind the secretary of defense where military personnel are texting and having a “good time.” On the midway, a hawkish Arizona senator playing video poker. And the ringmaster? Only the most warmongering Nobel Peace Prize recipient ever. Barnum must be rolling over, never having thought of such a traveling show.
Obama's Syria savvy
President Barack Obama’s effort to seek congressional approval for a strike on Syria not only demonstrates good leadership, it is a very shrewd political move. Should Congress vote in favor, Obama vindicates his position and Congress shares equal responsibility. On the other hand, should they forbid it, it takes the monkey off his back and exposes Congress to the criticism that it is condoning the use of sarin gas by Bashar Assad’s government against his own people. Further, Obama’s insistence that Congress have a voice strengthens America’s credibility throughout the world. This guy is good!
Carroll O. David
War won't be limited
Once again, the warmongers rattle their swords over the “moral imperative” to save the lives of foreigners while simultaneously saying that we cannot afford to provide our own veterans with the care that they deserve. If we cannot afford to provide support to those that answered the call, we certainly cannot afford to start another costly, utterly useless war. Anyone that believes the claims that it will be limited in scope, please contact me as I have some oceanfront property in Kansas for a great price.
U.N. should step up
Our nation is drowning in debt. Normal operating costs now exceed what the current national tax structure can acquire. War involvement will only exacerbate the situation, throwing us further in debt. We already have the medical bill with its uncalculated costs and the prospect of further draining of the national treasury. What is the compelling reason for our involvement in Syria? The current administration is enamored with so many things the United Nations wants to do; how about they encourage the U.N. to step up to the task of saving the abused in Syria? This is an international problem. We can share in the burden, but we should not do it alone, which seems to be the way we are headed.
Global warming a fantasy
Twice recently there have been letters to the editor that blindly declare that “global warming” is real. It is as real as gods and prophets saving mankind; it is a religion, full of dogma and the dismissal of reality. It also bears remarkable similarities to the eugenics movement in the early 20th century and Lysenkoism under Stalin. To quote Richard Lindzen, professor of meteorology, department of earth, atmospheric and planetary sciences at MIT, “A surprisingly large number of people seem to have concluded that all that gives meaning to their lives is the belief that they are saving the planet by paying attention to their carbon footprint.” However good this feeling of “saving the planet” that Global Warmists get, their hypotheses, from the IPCC predictions to a correlation of CO2 to global temperature, have so far proven to be false.