Thursday, December 14, 2006
During the holidays we should all remember those less fortunate.
Close to Nowhere
• This nut is cracked! Bits and pieces are flaking off everywhere.
My sanity may not be intact, but my body has once again survived the annual Debra Kay School of Dance performance of “The Nutcracker,” in Oxford.
Do we all have a home for Christmas?
Joan Gray, the moderator of my denomination, has written that “Christmas as it is generally practiced in our culture is an exercise in forgetting. From the week after Halloween until the stores close on December 24, the atmosphere around us is one of forgetting the unpleasant realities of life.
Is your iconic Christmas figure green or red clothed?
The excitment’s building, you can feel it in the air! What is it I’m talking about? Christmas, of course.
Letters to the Editor
A tragic fire at 1186 Wallhill Road in Byhalia destroyed the home of the 19-member Sadie Jones family, Wed., Dec. 6.
A kerosene heater exploded and burned the large farmhouse to the ground.
No one was injured but the family lost everything.
Please help this family in this time of great tragedy. An account for donations has been set up at the Merchants and Farmers Bank of Holly Springs and Byhalia.
Please send donations to Sadie Jones Fire Relief Fund, M&F Bank, P.O. Box 700, Holly Springs, MS 38635.
Thank you for your donations.
Bro. Lyle and
My wish is for the Supervisors to buy yellow and white paint for the county roads. Most of the lines can not be seen at all or some places it is very light.
Since we just received our tax bill, surely there is enough money in this budget to stripe our roads. Please try and work this request into your schedule before someone looses their life on these roads because they could not see the lines.
Much has been said and written concerning the funding of the Mississippi Adequate Education Program (MAEP) in the last several weeks, as there should be. No single appropriation considered by our State Legislature is more important to our State, our children, and our future than MAEP. This program is how we, as state taxpayers, provide the resources necessary to educate our children. It is designed to address two primary concerns: 1) adequate resources for a very basic education, and 2) equity in the distribution of those resources to insure that every child, regardless of where he/she lives in this state, is guaranteed that minimum amount of resources. The MAEP funds provide for teacher salaries, buses, textbooks, and operational costs.
The MAEP has been the most reviewed, debated, and audited of any program in the state. The PEER Committee has officially reviewed it at least twice; the Department of Audit has reviewed and audited it; official task forces have reviewed it; legislative committees have reviewed it and debated it extensively. The results of all those reviews? Only minor adjustments have been made. Why? Because, if properly funded, MAEP works.
There are two basic reasons why MAEP will work, if funded: 1) the “formula” is not hypothetical; it is based on the real cost of educating a child in Mississippi. The calculation comes from actual costs of Mississippi school districts, and is audited each and every year, as required by state law, by either an independent auditing firm approved by the State Department of Audit, or by the Audit Department itself, and 2) it is distributed, on a “per student” basis. The primary basis for the formula is simply the number of students in attendance times the “per student” cost, with adjustments for equity and “at-risk” students.
It is time to go ahead and fund the program that will provide our educational system the resources it needs to be successful. Mississippi now has in place one of the strongest accountability systems for K-12 education in the nation. This accountability system is working, but it can work at a much faster and more efficient pace if we provide the proper resources. We all know how important a basic education system is to our future. Independent studies stresses the importance of education; the business community stress the importance of education. Governor Barbour recently remarked to the Mississippi School Board Association: “Education is the number one economic development issue and the number one quality of life issue in our state. It is rightly the number one priority of state government.” So let’s allow the system, already in our state law, to work — strong accountability coupled with adequate funding.
Can we possibly put the politics aside, and do what’s right for our children and our future? Provide an adequate and stable funding sourcing for our educational system.
(662) 252-4261 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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