Month: August 2011

No child left behind

By ALLEN PRELL Expect students to study harder, when teachers  are willing to teach harder. Our expectations from students, young and old, has changed over time. So has the expectations from the employers in today’s hard economic times. The first action after graduation  for most students is the job interview. How we speak, answer questions, and think on our feet is behind every interview. Hiring managers are looking for brief answers with examples to support the questions. Public speaking is the number one fear for children and adults alike. What happened to reading, writing, arithmetic, and public speaking? My child did well in all subjects, except math. This subject often challenges young and old. Teachers in K through 12 and upper division education must be good at what they teach or they would not be teachers. This article is not intended to define teaching or  insult those in the profession, but to raise attention to a skill teachers have and students have not yet mastered. Teaching a class is an honor and a privilege. Teachers are given the responsibility of inspiring and imparting knowledge of a subject they are well versed in. Can a math teacher really identify with the student who does not connect the same learning pattern to math that they would to English or history? During a conference with a teacher, I posed some simple questions....

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Maine Ave. residents treated badly

To the Editor: I have lived on Maine Avenue. for almost fifty years and keep wondering why the residents of our street are treated so badly by the city. Over the years, we have established a street lighting district and some of us have paid to have the fronts of our properties paved.  We have gone to meeting after meeting as Taco Bell was put in with entrance/exit from our dead-end street; we have had to fight to have the street left a dead-end when the city wanted to put the street through; and then there was the billboard that was left in place many years after it was promised to be removed. The plus year-long construction of the building at the end of the street has been very disruptive; from the beating the asphalt took, the dust, the contractor’s use of my water without permission, the odorous “honey pot” placed against my fence and the tearing up and destroying of the tulip bed in front of my fence I have maintained many years without a word of discussion so that the “sidewalk to nowhere” could end with a sloped slab of asphalt on my side.  Why couldn’t the sloped slab of asphalt be in front of their property?  No answer has been forthcoming.  So in the springtime when you drive by, you will see a slab of asphalt...

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Visitors Center

To the Editor: Keizer has higher priorities than a Visitors Center at Keizer Station. No,no, no,  a thousand times no. A visitors center at Keizer Station does no good for the River Road businesses that are the heart of our community. River Road merchants have been ignored for 10 years since the idea of Keizer Station was first discussed. For those 10 years this mayor and various council members have said they support River Road merchants but every action they have taken has been to expand Keizer Station and its influence. A few pieces of art and curving sidewalks do nothing for our businesses along River Road. They now want to spend $500,000 without any study or faintest idea of how to operate such a visitors center, how much it would cost or where the funds would come from to operate such a facility. The mayor wants a ‘fast track’ without planning. What an ill conceived idea. I recall receiving replies to several e-mails in past years from Council Members regarding general fund expenditures under $500.00 each and the replies I got were that there was not enough information to vote on the issue. That same logic sure applies in this case. I am not sure that this mayor and some of the Council realize that we are in a recession and that noted economists are predicting we may...

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Dreams are never too big to fail

By ERIC A. HOWALD Been thinking about dreams. Big ones: about a box full of my book arriving at the doorstep fresh from the printer still smelling of the press and ink, my name on the cover. The big “A.” the culmination of a dream of immortality for my uncle who died on a hill in Vietnam seven years before I was born. My middle name was his first. Smaller ones: finally getting the first draft out of my head and onto a page. An imperfect thing that I will need to distill even further. Miniscule ones: getting off work and returning to the writing headspace that horrifies and ignites. There’s a lot of distance between the miniscule one and the big one, and lot of dreams that fell or will fall to the wayside in pursuit of any of them. And, then, I think about my daughter’s dream: by the end of kindergarten she decided she wanted to be an artist. Nothing I’ve ever written has terrified me as much as watching her on the steps in Gubser Elementary School’s A-Pod wearing a sash she created giving voice to this dream in front of a crowd of her friends and their parents. At age 7, she doesn’t fully understand the commitment it will take. The bleeding dry of her own veins in pursuit of her voice. The endless...

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Bringing lung cancer out of the shadows

By STEPHANIE LINDGREN If asked what cancer is the leading cause of death among men and women today, the likely response from most women would be breast cancer. The likely response from most men would be prostate cancer. Yet the real answer is lung cancer – and it is and will continue to be the leading cause of cancer death among men and women today, tomorrow and for decades to come. Why is this extraordinary and devastating fact not known? Because lung cancer is the most stigmatized, misunderstood and ignored cancer of all. While it may be easy for society to blame lung cancer on smoking, the reality today is that 80% of new lung cancer cases inflict people who either have never smoked or have quit smoking – most decades ago. It is taking more lives each year than breast, prostate, colon and pancreatic cancers – combined. And lung cancer has a very low 5-year survival rate of only 15%. Nobody deserves lung cancer, whatever the cause, and we must do more to combat this devastating disease. Success lies in approaching lung cancer comprehensively – just as we do other major illness. Prevention and wellness coupled with early detection and treatment options must be adequately funded and coordinated. Isn’t that how we approach heart disease? Breast cancer? HIV/AIDS? Why should lung cancer be held to a different standard?...

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