Letters to the Editor
While walking up Main Street on a bitter winter day, I was thinking about a recent editorial regarding what Park City would be like without snow. This winter we have waited and waited for the snow to come, and it finally has! This winter has also provided us with our first Save Our Snow initiative and countless global warming "warnings."
While I walked, I was astonished to see numerous businesses with their doors held OPEN with door stops and wire hangers, inviting shoppers. I stepped into one of these businesses and felt a blast of warm air. Are local business owners thinking green? Other stores with their doors wide open have stickers on the windows showing off their "support" for other green initiatives. Even worse offenders are the multi-national corporations with stores on Main Street that sell organic cotton shirts and "combat global warming" books.
Main Street businesses’ doors are open, but their minds are shut. Keeping your door open with the heat blasting or the air conditioner running (summer time is no different) is a deplorable way to attract customers. What are the chances that the managers behind these decisions are inattentive in their own homes as well?
Is our town really that concerned with global warming or, more importantly, using common sense? Many businesses on Main Street obviously are not.
Park City school cutbacks
I happened to hear, on the radio Thursday morning, excerpts of the meetings held by the Park City School District regarding some of the planned cutbacks. Regarding the subject in general, Park City needs to find a way to improve and add programs, not take them away. This city is so handcuffed by the state that Park City needs to rethink the overall strategy. Perhaps if we told the state to keep their money, we’ll handle this ourselves, the schools in this town would be a lot better off.
Specifically though, there is consideration to cut some of the music programs, which from personal experience I can tell you is a mistake. Our youngest daughter was a product of the Park City music program and as a result is now embarked on a successful recording and performing career. Her music will be released nationwide next month on radio and iTunes. None of this would be possible had it not been for the dedication of the Park City schools’ music teachers and the programs offered. These programs were important then and are important now and it would be a crime to restrict or limit those students that the programs serve.
Snow days and safety issues
It’s Friday morning. The roads are snow-packed, the shoulders filled with plowed snow and wind is drifting snow on parts of my road. I hear there’s one lane open driving north on parts of 224, and 248 is similar. The mouth of Parley’s Canyon is very treacherous. We have snow up to our knees covering our entire driveway. Many of our friends and neighbors here in the Park City area do not have sidewalks. Neighborhoods like Silver Creek require that people drive cars to the bus stop. Under these conditions children and employees of Park City School District are attempting to arrive safely at the schools.
I understand that deciding to call a snow day is not a perfect science. Living in a mountain town, this decision must be faced often. Many of us are hearty and hale and can manage, but I think there is an important difference between managing and safety.
The district has two snow make-up days scheduled — yet unused. Our snow make-up days were not used as the snow days last year or the year before.
Our entire student population from eighth-12th grade must be at bus stops somewhere between 6:40 and 7 a.m. In the dark, some students are walking to the stops and some students don’t get to the bus in the first place because of trouble arriving there. Many employees of the district commute to Park City.
For these and other reasons I would like to see the district take another look at how they call snow days. With the lives and well being of so many individuals, I prefer to see them err on the side of caution.
Budget cuts lead to mediocrity
Dear School Board:
Due to a $2 million deficit of the budget, (an apparent surprise), the Park City School Board has under consideration a proposal to make extensive cuts to school programs and teachers benefits, totaling in excess of $2 million.
We are the parents of two children whom we intend to be schooled in the Park City School District for the next eight years.
We live here primarily because of this excellent school system with overwhelming community support of a goal and a vision that aims to continue to refine this asset into one of the top 10 in the country!
This is a community built on the standard of excellence and it will not stand for less. This community demands the best possible public education for our children. This requires retaining great, experienced teachers along with high quality programs.
The cuts in programs and teacher benefits the school board proposes violate this community’s standards and the trust it has placed in the board. These cuts are a clear step backward and, when taken as a whole, have the unpleasant odor of mediocrity.
Maintaining the current standards of excellence and working to improve them apparently costs more money that our community now provides. In our view, the board’s failure to obtain the needed funds through an increase in taxes (since apparently all other sources have been tapped) is a failure of the board to fulfill its educational obligations to our children — the board members’ primary duty as office holders.
If you as school board members view your obligation to be one of providing only an adequate education at the lowest possible cost, you should resign, as that approach is 180 degrees out of step with the trust this community has placed in you for the quality of the education you are expected to provide to our most precious assets — our children.
School board special session
We, the teachers of Ecker Hill International Middle School, who attended the school board’s special session, would like to extend our thanks to those parents and students who stood up and supported us. Your time and words meant the world to us, and truly boosted our morale. Please continue your efforts to save the standard of education for which Park City is known.
Elisabeth Wadman and
The teachers of Ecker Hill
Giving a cheer for Teri Orr
The Park City High School Cheerleaders would like to thank Teri Orr for allowing all of us to wait for Justin Timberlake to walk by our cheer room door, when his movie premiered at the Eccles Center, during the Sundance Film Festival. It was the highlight of our year to have him stop and let us take pictures of him. And, what an awesome surprise when we were presented with the huge poster that Teri Orr had made of all of us waiting for Justin. Thank you so much for your kindness and for all your patience with us as we eagerly waited for Justin. You’re awesome, Teri Orr!
With sincere thanks,
Park City High School Cheerleaders
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Park City Mayor Andy Beerman writes in a guest editorial that, if Hideout wants to be part of the Park City community, it should start acting like it.