Opinion

Sales tax for schools better than consolidation

Dear Editor,

I do not think many citizens in Barnwell County are aware of the political movement afoot to consolidate public schools in Barnwell County. I doubt many people understand that the ultimate goal of consolidation is a centralized high school in Barnwell County.

Our politicians will tell us that the cost of running three school districts is too high and our schools are failing. They won’t tell you that consolidation in other counties in South Carolina hasn’t lowered taxes or raised the quality of education in those counties.

‘Debate issues without debasing each other’

Dear Editor,

I appreciate so much everything you said in the section of your editorial on July 5 which began “Let’s talk about words.”

It takes courage to put in print what so many people think, but do not have the courage to say. I wish more media – such as newspapers, radio, television – would say the things you wrote.

“We can debate issues without debasing each other.” Hopefully others in all walks of life will embrace that statement. You have led the way.

Sincerely,

Betty Jane Miller,

Hilda

Have children read to avoid summer ‘slide’

With summer flying by we encourage students along with their parents or guardians to make the most of the next five weeks or so that are left before school bells ring.

Many children often experience what education experts have termed the “summer slide”. This is the tendency for students, especially those from low-income families, to lose some of the achievement gains they made during the previous year.

Actions and words have consequences

First, let’s talk about actions.

We were seriously disappointed to learn that the Allendale County School Board took action and filed suit against the State Department of Education after State Superintendent Molly Spearman declared that district in a state of emergency and took over control.

This is a power play that has nothing to do with educating the children of Allendale County.

The board has obviously failed to set the policies and guidelines in place, and to get the right leadership in order to pull Allendale County schools out of its pit.

Drowning victim’s family expresses thanks

Dear Editor,

The family of Stanley P. Ray would like to thank you all for your dedication: To the SCDNR, EMS, Coroner of Allendale County, Sheriff’s Office and anyone else that had a part in finding and recovering my son, Stanley P. Ray, from Little Hell boat landing. Stanley drowned there on June 17, 2017 at about 7 p.m.

It was a tragic thing for my family and me. You never get over a tragedy of this kind. But hopefully we can learn to live with them.

Our flag still waves for our freedom

The United States of America is resilient.

Take the flag that flew over Fort McHenry more than 200 years ago as a visible symbol of our country’s strength and perseverance.

American lawyer Francis Scott Key was the first witness to this truth. As he watched the continuous bombardment of the Baltimore fort by the British on September 13, 1814, Key kept watch for the flag.

As long as the flag stood, Key knew the fort and city were safe.

He wanted to be assured the American flag was still there.

It was.

New crew needs chance to make Allendale sail

Sometimes tough decisions have to be made in order to bring about a positive change.

Such is the case earlier this week when State Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman declared a “State of Emergency” in the Allendale County School District.

It wasn’t an easy decision, but it was a necessary one, she said, after thinking about what is in the best interest of the district’s students.

We concur.

Why every day should be Earth Day

Dear Editor,

We recently commemorated Earth Day and it got me thinking. Earth Day is a day we set aside to both learn about our environment and to do something to conserve and improve it.

Whether we realize it or not, all of us benefit from the natural resources all around us. From the food we eat to the clothes we wear and the technology we use every day, in one way or another our daily lives are affected by things that come from our beautiful planet.

There’s plenty to do locally this summer

Summer is here and many students are ready for a much-needed break.

However, we encourage students to stay active – both physically and mentally – this summer so they can avoid the “summer slide”. This is a term education professionals use to describe how students, especially those who come from low-income families, tend to lose some of the achievement gains they made during the previous school year.

You worked hard all school year to learn and grow, so don’t let that work be in vain.

‘Civilian’ salute carries thanks

Dear Editor,

The Memorial Day service touched me in a way I can’t fully describe but perhaps this thought can sum it up.

At the closing of the ceremony it was explained that previously, discharged and off duty servicemen couldn’t salute the flag until a law was amended to allow such.

The main speaker shared the amended bill, explained it and asked all former, current and off duty veterans to stand with him and salute their fallen brethren.

Work continues as teen pregnancy rates decline

Dear Editor,

Did you know?

• The teen birth rate in Barnwell County has dropped 70 percent from its peak in 1991.

• In 2014, Barnwell County had 37 teen births and was ranked #3 in South Carolina for teen births.

• In 2015, Barnwell County had 18 teen births among females ages 15 to 19 - a decrease of 19 teen births for a decrease of 48.6 percent! The county’s ranking for teen births dropped from 3rd to 30th in the state.

Frederick family appreciative

Dear Editor,

The family of the late Roosevelt Frederick Jr. would to express their sincere appreciation shown during the loss of our loved one. Your calls, texts, visits, food, etc. were accepted with heartfelt love.

We also want to extend a special thank you to Mr. Joe Smith and to Barnwell Fire Chief Tony Dicks and staff.

May God continue to richly bless each of you.

Thoughtfully submitted,

The family of

Roosevelt Frederick Jr.

Hurricane season to be above normal - are you prepared?

Forecasters at NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center say the Atlantic could see another above-normal hurricane season this year.

Last year produced 5 land-falling storms, including Matthew that caused $10 billion in damage and killed 34 people in the U.S. and 551 in the Caribbean. It was one of the deadliest Atlantic hurricanes on record.

Help is needed for Barnwell Animal Shelter

Dear Editor,

It’s time for some harsh realities, Barnwellians! We need our community to step up and become fosters for the unwanted animals that show up every single day at our shelter!

All it requires is your time; we provide food and all medical. We literally have dozens of cute puppies and kitties that you can nurture! This is a SHELTER, not a personal dumping site!

If you have adult animals that are not spayed or neutered, get them fixed or surrender them.

Debate on Southern history, slavery continues

Dear Editor,

We can argue and discuss this subject until Jesus comes again. I’m not going to continue getting in some sort of who knows history best with Mr. Pernell, but he said a couple of things in his most recent response to my letter that I just have to point out, and then I’m not going to comment any further in this newspaper about this subject.

Graduates: Big things come from small areas

Dear graduates,

First, we want to congratulate you all on your achievement! From kindergarten through high school, and some through college, you have studied, memorized, calculated, analyzed and recited. You have been tested (and retested), scored and graded.

Now you have reached the final week of school.

Wow. It seems like standing at the edge of a canyon, feeling the wind on your face and having the urge to fly like the birds around you.

Pay homage this holiday

On Monday, May 29, there will be a lot of celebrations. It’s a holiday! It’s graduation weekend! It’s the start of summer!

But Memorial Day is more than all that - much more.

It is a time to honor those who paid the ultimate sacrifice to protect and defend the United States of America.

In Barnwell County, a Memorial Day service will be held at the Veterans Memorial Park at 10 a.m.

It is our hope that many in our community will take the time to attend the service and spend a little time remembering what the holiday is all about.

‘Age out loud’ during Older Americans Month

Dear Editor,

John F. Kennedy first designated May as Senior Citizens Month in 1963. Since that time, each May has been a time to celebrate and pay tribute to older Americans.

What is now known as Older Americans Month offers a special opportunity to learn about, support and recognize our older citizens.

The Administration on Aging has announced that this year’s theme is “Age Out Loud”.

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