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Opinion

March 22, 2013

Letters to the Editor: March 22, 2013

Why are students nixing urban schools?

This letter is in response to various articles recently read concerning the proposed House Bill 1381 — mainly directed to author Mike Karickhoff of Kokomo, and co-authors Terri Austin of Anderson, Ed Clere of New Albany and Kevin Mahan of Hartford City.

HB 1381 would ban school districts from accepting only the brightest transfer students while turning away those with special needs, low test scores and minor disciplinary problems. While I agree this could be a problem, there is more to it than districts choosing students who will or will not be accepted into receiving districts.

It is all about money. For instance, look at Anderson. Enrollment has declined by 18.9 percent or 1,663 students between the 2009-10 and 2011-12 school years. At $13,000 per student per year in funding, the Anderson district could realize a decline of $21.6 million in state funding.

Kokomo-Center Schools could see a funding drop of $4.8 million over the same time period; New Albany, a drop of $4.7 million, and Blackford County, a decline of $1.6 million.

The bigger issue: Why are students choosing to leave urban districts to attend rural districts? Rather than letting our state government dictate another item that should be decided locally, those crying foul should step back and look at what can be done to keep in-district students from leaving.

Don’t cry foul if things don’t go your way. Step back and hit a 3-pointer next time down the court.

Chris Smith, Liberty Center

 

Obama seeks defeat of all conservatives

So here’s what I believe is happening in Washington: Obama comes up with the sequester and blames it on the opposing party. He really doesn’t want to compromise and doesn’t take criticism well. He likes to circumvent Congress with executive orders. He hasn’t governed so far; he’s campaigned for six years, but if he can replace the House in 2014, that is when he’ll start governing.

He won’t govern; he will rule. Does this sound like a dictator?

He tells department heads to make it as hard as possible on people because of the sequester. He doesn’t have a problem with spending a couple million dollars flying Air Force One to play golf with Tiger Woods or shutting down White House tours for kids on spring break. I have never seen a president be so petty, not even Lyndon Johnson.

So here is the goal: Eliminate the conservatives in the next election. Then, he can put in place his progressive, radical agenda.

There is a fine blue line that protects this country. There is an even finer line of conservatives, excluding Sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham, who are keeping our Constitution in place. If those conservatives are gone, we are in trouble.

We should be very concerned about the huge stockpile of weapons and ammunition. More than 1 billion rounds of ammunition have been ordered, of which most are a hollow-point shell that cannot be used in wars because they explode in the body. Evidently they can be used on people of this country.

We should also be concerned with the armored cars and drones this administration is building up in this country under the guise of Homeland Security. Very few know what is going on. The rest need to start asking questions before it is too late.

People are crying out for real news, and the media is not informing us. So do your research and check out what I have written.

Jim Richardson, Sharpsville

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