Watson ignores Austin’s multitude of problems
Re: Jan. 5 commentary, “Watson: Plenty at stake for Austin taxpayers this legislative session.”
Kirk Watson, in his op-ed, bemoans the fact that the legislature is looking over the shoulder of city of Austin management. Does he read the newspaper? We have been floundering around without a city manager or police chief for several months while the crime numbers are getting worse. The mayor talks taxpayers into a huge bond deal to relieve traffic congestion and then wants to hire a consultant to tell him how to spend the money. The city admits to gross negligence in managing its DNA lab and now wants to hire a consultant to tell it how to fix it. Meanwhile, we hear that the city must spend more money to solve the homeless problem it created by making the city attractive to homeless people. Maybe we should hire a consultant to run Austin and fire the incompetent people at City Hall.
KENT DOUGLASS, AUSTIN
Give teachers the time to develop creative lessons
Re: Jan. 6 commentary, “Newman: Texas is breaking educators.”
I read with interest the commentary by David Newman. As a former teacher, I can relate to the story of “Jane Doe.” He did not mention her “average” classes. Since retiring from teaching remedial reading in a Houston-area high school, I have substituted in a nearby high school and the difference between the advanced students and the “average” students is night and day. While the advanced students show a greater interest in their education and perform accordingly, the average classes are more likely to have students who are more noncompliant both in their classwork and behavior and less motivated to perform academically.
The Texas Education Agency and school districts need to think creatively about giving teachers time and opportunity for developing creative thinking lessons at school and with financial support so that these plans can be actually implemented.
CHARLOTTE BROADWAY, KINGSLAND
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