Thursday, August 11, 2004

Letters to the Editor

Road safety:
Dear Editor,

After years of patching and repairing, the state has finally appropriated funds and work has begun on this bridge. This bridge is located on South Red Banks Road near Hawks Feed Mill.

Unfortunately in order to replace a bridge, we would have to reroute traffic or build a bypass across this creek which would be too time consuming and expensive.

So we choose the next best option which is to reroute traffic. Traffic would be rerouted from Marianna Road through McCauley Road back to South Red Banks Road. It just so happened that McCauley is a gravel road.

Keep in mind the reason the bridge is being replaced is for your safety. We are just as concerned about your safety on McCauley Road. Most people who travel on a gravel road regularly understand that it can be a little tricky.

We will monitor this road on a regular basis, keeping it graded and as smooth as possible. We have also placed 30 mile per hour speed limit signs along this road.

We urge you to talk with your loved ones, relatives and friends and ask them to honor these signs for their safety and others’.

This project will soon be over, and we all will be proud of the new bridge and the safety it exemplifies.

George Zinn
Supervisor, District 4

School uniforms:
Dear Editor,

I had made plans to attend the July 12 meeting on school uniforms, however, I ended up in the hospital and was unable to attend. This fact really upsets me because I have very strong feelings on this matter and am afraid that decisions have been made and my opinion will now go unheard. I pray that the people I send this to will take the time to really read and think about the views I have on the matter.

First, uniforms will not bring up the academic level of a school! Example: Mary Reid - level 5 no uniforms; DeSoto county schools - level 4 and 5 no uniforms (they keep voting them down year after year); Shelby County Schools - pretty good ratings there and you guessed it - no uniforms!

Come on now, I can tell you how to raise the scores. Make sure there are enough books for children to bring them home so parents can help! My daughter struggled in 2 subjects last year and could not bring home a book for me to help because there weren’t enough.

Second, unless you can guarantee me new uniforms with a total cost per outfit of no more than $10 for K-2 and no more than $15 for 3rd and up, then I can do better without them! I have 3 children in school this year and due to health problems I am unable to work at this time. I buy clearance - $3 to $6 shirts. I can spend $7 on my 5-year-old for a full outfit and $10 to $15 for my 13-year-old. I have seen prices of uniforms...I can’t afford them for all three! Also, uniforms do not hold up as well. Yes, I heard about the plan to offer free used uniforms. Seems like a good idea but knowing they don’t hold up well, means that all the other kids will be able to tell the used from the new each year and there goes trying to make everyone equal and fit in on the same level. Plus uniforms make us have to buy separate clothes for going out with family or on weekends.

Third is fashion pressure. Unless you tell everyone to have the same shoes, coats, backpacks, purses, notebooks, etc. there will still be those who can afford name brand and those who have Payless Costers! Uniforms will not keep children from being ‘labeled’ or in ‘clicks’. Don’t we need to teach fashion and what is proper? If not, how will they know how to dress in the work force?

Forth is comfort! What is the first thing we do when we get home from church or from work if we have the wear ‘dress’ clothes? We change. And why? Because we are not comfortable. I know I can pay attention and learn more if I am comfortable and relaxed.

My older son likes to ‘dress up’ for a short time on Sunday but would be very uncomfortable in dress pants everyday.

I am sorry, but I just do not like the idea of school uniforms! I have already spent $81 on workbooks and two ‘PE uniforms’ one for each older child (which I have to go out and buy more shorts for my children to wear under them because they are Jersey shorts, net-like material, and my kids don’t like wearing see-through clothes). Plus $200 on supplies and I have already purchased school clothes for the year. I will not be able to do uniforms! I thought this was a public school system not private. If I wanted the expense of uniforms, my children would be in private Catholic school. What happens if they don’t wear uniforms? Are you going to tell my children they can’t come to school? Are you going to take away their right to a free education? Henry Elementary suggested uniforms to parents a couple of years ago but it was not mandatory and the parents chose not to send their children in them; so that should tell you how we feel about uniforms. Why didn’t we show up at the meeting then? I only saw one notice about one meeting on this matter and people can’t just drop everything during the middle of the day! Maybe you would have a better turn-out if meetings were held at each school during normal off-time hours!

One other thing, remember if we are going to force children to wear the same thing every single day then it is only right that the teachers and staff wear the same uniform as the kids everyday. Otherwise the ‘professional’ look is gone. Why can’t we just get a good dress code going like Shelby and DeSoto and make sure it is followed? What happens when another child is trying to identify a child that has done something wrong...oh, it was the boy in khaki and blue. That will work, won’t it?

I worked in the Desoto County School System for years and I know the problems. I know any education job is hard and may God be with you all and help you make the right decisions for our children. But please, let’s stop dealing with the question of uniforms and concentrate on teaching our children and keeping them safe. Get them books and leave the clothes up to the parents and let the children grow as individuals.

Thank you for your time and I hope you were able to read this with an open mind.

Rhonda Smith,
Mother of three

Faithful servant:
Dear Editor,

To our pastor - Bro. J. Glosson.

Thank you for 17 years of your faithful service in The Lord. The Word of God says (I Timothy 5:17): Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honor, especially they who labour in the Word and Doctrine.

Sometimes we so easily forget that pastors have a hard job. They have to carry the burden of all their church members beside their own family. We’re so quick to find fault with what they preach and teach on. The Word of God says (Hebrews 4:12) For the Word of God is quick and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. God is not coming back again in the flesh. That’s what we have pastors for, to teach us the way God wants His people to live. So the next time you get upset with the pastor and think he’s just being smart with you, remember (Hebrews 12:6) For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. The only way we can be taught and have an opportunity to make Heaven is through a preacher: (Romans 10:14-15) So we would like to say a thank you Bro. J. Glosson for being our pastor. (Hebrews 13:17) They watch for our souls.

With love and appreciation
Your church family
Connie Hutchens
Church of the Living Gospel

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