The real problems
Test scores do not improve with teacher bonuses (“Teacher bonuses fail to boost students’ test scores,” Sept. 22) because teachers are not the problem.
I retired from a very successful elementary teaching career, includ-ing being Teacher of the Year. My last two years teaching, I had children with post traumatic stress syndrome, manic depression, autism, ADHD (with and without medication) and learning disabilities caused by fetal drugs and alcohol.
There are growing numbers of children who do not attend regularly, do not speak English and do not understand good behavior. Through it all, caring teachers work 12-hour days (but are paid for seven and a half hours) and spend thousands of dollars of their own money on classroom materials.
Until the real problems are addressed, no amount of money thrown at teacher training, teacher bonuses or test scores is going to be effective.
Now that class sizes have gone from 20 to 30, it is going to be more necessary than ever for parents to read and do homework with their children every night, which teaches them how to be successful students. Spend some time helping in our classrooms. Learn what remarkable schools and teachers we have and you can become part of the solution.
Since my last letter to the editor, the section of road on Airport Road, near the Estrella Adobe Church, is still bad, actually worse. We have a lot of potholes.
Now that grape harvest is going on, trucks travel this section, and they travel very fast. When I met an oncoming truck in this section of the road, rocks were picked up and hit my car. There is the start of a crack in my windshield.
A couple of questions to the city of Paso Robles: When will this road be repaired, and is the city responsible for the repair of my windshield?
It might help if the city would put up signs letting drivers know that the road is in disrepair, full of potholes and falling apart. Maybe it would slow drivers down.
A tidy solution
What California city will be the next San Bruno? Or maybe it will be in New York. Nevada? Oregon? Will we be ready?
I thought about this as I read your excellent (and scary) profiles that appeared recently on the local families whose lives have been marginalized by our county’s current recession (“Broken hearths,” Sept. 19-21). Unrelated topics?
I think not.
We have millions of unemployed, ranging from unskilled labor to professional scientists and engineers. They should be put to work now testing, digging and laying new pipe.
They would be doing jobs that cannot be sent abroad, jobs that American workers would be glad to get. The materials and equipment needed to replace the antiquated junk that is rusting in the ground all around us need not be imported.
What a match!