Letters to the Editor, June 4-6, 2014
Eihausen for Education
Are you a balance-your-checkbook-to-the-penny kind of person? Then Julie Eihausen for Park City School Board of Education, District 5 is for you. I first encountered Julie at a Park City School District (PCSD) School Community Council (SCC) meeting in November 2010. Her exemplary attention to detail in bookkeeping as treasurer for the SCC at Ecker Hill Middle School etched a positive and lasting memory that I will never forget. The PCSD MUNIS accounting system had been a very sore source of contention at our school because of so many account numbers, that funds had been misplaced for a period of time. If Julie had been on our SCC, I do not think this would have occurred. I was so impressed by her ability to understand the system and, therefore, where the dollars were allocated under different account numbers, that I have encouraged her to give a PCSD SCC accounting seminar. She has since gone on to a state SCC position to follow her passion of parent education for spending these state allocated funds appropriately. I am confident that her accounting acumen will translate into being a strong advocate of balancing the school district budget and having a collaborative approach with the Business Administrator on the financial aspects of our district.
Do you believe in adhering to the PCSD goal of a 23:1 student to teacher ratio? Julie does. She is passionate about fighting for every student to receive the quality education that her own children were fortunate to benefit from. She feels that the individualized, quality instruction that Park City teachers can provide with smaller class sizes are worth every penny.
Do you ever ask about the history behind an issue? Julie currently has a sophomore at PCHS and another PCHS alumnus at Westminster College. She has been attending monthly PCSD school board meetings for eight years. She is not only well-informed but has a vast depth of experience about how decisions evolved. Julie is always the voice of wisdom that I can ask for the background information on a topic.
I am endorsing Julie Eihausen as a candidate for the PCSD Board. Please recognize the importance of voting on Tuesday, June 24 for the primary election for School Board of Education, District 5. All people in Pinebrook, Summit Park, and Timberline need to voice their opinion that will impact the future education of our children. Vote for the passion, experience, and wisdom of Julie Eihausen.
Shannon Hallowell Schemmer
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Of course it’s not guns
I am a teacher and I lock my classroom door every morning. On rare nights, I lock my front door at home. I wish it were the opposite.
Although I do not own or carry a gun, I would say that in today’s world, the only place that you really need a gun is outside your home.
American murders are no longer crimes perpetrated on specific persons, but rather acts of revenge taken on all of humanity. Even more disturbing, murder’s motives are often set in the conditional tense — blame for what should have happened in one’s life, rather than what did happen.
At some point, a message has been transmitted that suggests American society owes each person something, and yet each individual owes society nothing — or at least nothing good. And in any case, murder is what you can do if you’re mad about it. In former days of logic, I would have thought that all of this must somehow add up; that there must be an explanation as to why these same conditions arise again and again. I keep looking at the arguments of those who claim that "guns don’t kill people" and I find that not all of America is demanding logic. So I won’t use it either.
If mass murderers are targeting all of humanity, then obviously someone is going to get in their way. So if we can’t control guns, then let’s control what we can — 350 million people in public.
Perhaps targets (all of humanity) should not travel in slow-moving groups in a city. This provides close range and a contiguous surface area, allowing for easy, quick, sloppy drive-bys. Guns aren’t killing people; people who walk on sidewalks are. Perhaps targets should not congregate in public spaces for entertainment. These provide crowded, enclosed areas, trapping targets who can’t move. Guns aren’t killing people; movie goers are. Perhaps students should not attend schools. These provide guaranteed, large numbers of young targets who are learning how to read, allowing for absolute annihilation. Guns aren’t killing people; children going to school 180 days a year for 13 years, working for the chance at a decent future are.
Many people who oppose gun control also oppose the Common Core—what they see as another infringement upon the rights of states and individuals. In the entire anti-gun-control debate, this is actually the one thing that does make sense to me. The same people who say that guns don’t kill children must also believe that good arguments do.
If we don’t demand logic as a weapon against the violence in our country, then instead of asking, "how could this happen again?" we will be asking, "when will this happen again?"
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Stand up for the Tribune, before it’s too late
Our Founding Fathers, in their wisdom and foresight, endeavored to establish a separation of Church and State, a basic tenet of our government, guaranteeing freedom and justice for all. No one entity, be it government, church or military, can seize power or impose their will upon the citizenry. A free and open discourse is essential among a free people.
From the dawn of our Republic, "broadsheets" or newspapers have been central to the dissemination of information to the citizens. Known as the Penny Press, anyone could post a notice, whether it be a For Sale ad, an announcement or an opinion. Early on, the free press evolved into a watchdog of government – bringing information from behind closed doors and into the light. This was and is, an imperative for a free and concerned public engaged in the business of self government of and for the people.
Our right to information, open debate, and differing opinions uninfluenced by a single powerful entity via the free press is currently under attack in Utah. Please educate yourself about the ituation between The Desert News and the Salt Lake Tribune, the two major newspapers in the state. Long operated under a Joint Operating Agreement, which combines business operations while keeping news/editorial departments separate, the News has worked behind the scenes with the papers’ owner (a New York hedge fund!) to unfairly skew the JOA to short change the Tribune. As a result, it is rumored that the demise of that newspaper is imminent, leaving Utah with a single heavily-influenced and powerful voice. It is already happening: recently The Wave began delivering The Deseret News National Edition in our local weekly paper, unasked, unwanted and un-needed.
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It takes a village to raise a garden
Starting a garden is always an adventure. When contemplating starting a garden at Ecker Hill Middle School I had very little idea of the kind of support and generosity we would receive from the community and staff members like Jeff Carson, our head custodian, and Todd Hansen, our head of maintenance at the district office. It’s been overwhelming and the garden looks great as a result.
Our beds are built, filled with a great compost mixture, and seeds are planted. The drip irrigation system is in, working, and sprouts are popping up ready for warm weather. The gravel is around the beds and along the path to our memory grove and it looks great!
None of this could have happened without the generosity of many organizations, businesses and individuals. I would like to thank them, on behalf of the Ecker Hill Middle School, for without their support, there would be no garden. Some of them include: Park City Education Foundation, Live PC Give PC, and the Park City School District Maintenance Crew and Whole Foods Whole Kids Foundation, among others.
The garden will be around for years to come, due to the hard work of the students and the support of the staff and our wonderful community. Students can see where their food comes from, what grows well here in Park City, and why it’s important (and a great idea) to compost. Have a great summer and happy gardening,
Annie Wallace, Ecker Hill Middle School
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Children’s Fair takes flight on wings of supporters
The Soaring Wings PTSO hosted its 21st Annual Park City Children’s Fair in City Park on Sunday under a beautiful sunny sky and along with crowds of happy children of all ages. Proceeds set a new record for funds which will be donated to local and global organizations that the students of Soaring Wings International Montessori School have chosen for their roles in creating a better world for children. The entire school helps to put on this Fair every year with virtually every student, teacher and parent helping in some way. I’d especially like to thank a few of the hard-working members of our Fair Committee who have been working on this since November;
Thank you to all of the families of Soaring Wings past, present and future who came out to support us! And thanks to the Park City community who are some of the most generous and mindful folks on the planet. Namaste.
Duna Strachan, Executive Director
Soaring Wings International Montessori School
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KPCW seeks to establish Broadcasters Club
You at The Park Record know, as we do at KPCW, of the rough road ahead for local journalism. On our public media side, the small public subsidy of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting is politically controversial and may well go away. "News reporter" now lands on the list of "least desirable" occupations.
And yet the need for objective information has never been greater. At KPCW, one-third of our nine-person staff is devoted solely to local newsgathering. As new media proliferates, KPCW needs to constantly re-invest in technology and content gathering.
Toward that end, KPCW is launching "The Broadcasters Club." We are asking residents who value local journalism to join, with an annual gift to the station. I’d urge everyone who wants to see continued robust civic dialogue to visit http://www.kpcw.org and click on the Broadcasters Club logo on our home page.
Our community is well served by a strong newspaper and a strong public radio station. We hope both continue to thrive. Please consider becoming a member of KPCW’s Broadcaster’s Club.
KPCW General Manager
Chair, KPCW Board of Trustees
“If you cannot love your neighbor as yourself, no matter who they are, start by looking in the mirror and see what changes need to be made from within.”