Supporting KET worth the effort
I have been a volunteer at KET, Kentucky’s statewide public television system, since 1985. I volunteer my time there because for years my family and I have enjoyed the diverse, wonderful programming and services KET provides, and I want to take part in passing those things on to others in my community.
KET provides programming that focuses on Kentucky and keeps us informed in public affairs, arts, health and education in the Commonwealth. From legislative coverage and weekly public affairs programs to Kentucky Life, Louisville Life, and Thoroughbred, nobody puts the emphasis on Kentucky that KET does. Plus, KET serves the community through its many outreach efforts and services to our schools.
KET also delivers outstanding national programming, including Antiques Roadshow, Masterpiece, Celtic Woman, and the many non-violent, commercial-free children’s programs that parents know they can trust.
For all of these reasons, I support KET and urge others to do the same. There is no better time to show your support than during KET”s upcoming TeleFund 2012, now through March 18. You’ll feel proud to be a member of KET, knowing that you’re helping to keep great programs and services on the air for all Kentuckians.
Elsa Bell Spurlock
KET Friends Board
Do athletics mean more than academics?
In another place at another time, I can remember that when school was canceled, athletic events also were canceled. Perry County Schools were out Thursday, February 16 through Wednesday, February 22, first because of a large number of illnesses, and then because of snow and power outages. At the same time the school athletes were quite busy. Gleaning from the February 22 and February 29 issues of The Hazard Herald, the following basketball games were played:
February 17, Perry County Central Commodores versus Sheldon Clark Cardinals
February 17, Buckhorn Wildcats versus Knott Central Patriots
February 17, Buckhorn Lady Wildcats versus Buchanan Lady Crusaders
February 18, Buckhorn Wildcats versus Estill County Engineers
February 21, Perry County Central Lady Commodores versus Buckhorn Lady Wildcats
In addition, on February 17 and 18, the Perry County Central wrestlers were in Lexington participating in a state tournament at Kentucky Horse Park.
Rather than dwelling on the obvious misplaced emphasis on athletics while academics suffers, I would like to point out that athletic competition teaches many lessons about life that could be applied to academics. Those who excel in athletics have committed themselves to a rigorous training program, exhibiting self-discipline and making sacrifices to achieve their goals. To succeed they must develop endurance, resilience and persistence. They have learned both how to win and how to lose, recognizing where they need to improve and when they need to accept coaching. During this process they have developed a strong work ethic and learned to organize their time to manage multiple activities. The end result is a self-respect and self-confidence that comes from real achievement.
Why aren’t the lessons of athletics applied to academics? In academics, the top students pretend that genius comes without effort, while the bottom students pretend that what they don’t know is not important. Is our system promoting these views? In the classroom teachers have the opportunity to act as coaches, while students develop the maturity to take responsibility for their own learning progress. In some classrooms this is happening, but not frequently enough.
Why are schools emphasizing athletics while appearing to neglect academics? Athletic scholarships are providing the means for some to attend college, but couldn’t they do as well with academic scholarships? How many Perry County School graduates are now professional athletes or are competing in the Olympic Games? One in 1,000? One in 10,000?
John Hoppe, Ph.D.
The real goal – educated citizens
Mr. Michael turner, in his recent letter, “Being a great citizen,” made some great points. We are indeed blessed to have been born in a great nation. We do have a responsibility.
Beyond that, to Mr. Turner, my first observation: Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s writings are of little value to anyone lacking the ability to read. My second: I found your reference to “idiot at a board meeting” to be classless and totally out of place in an otherwise well-written piece, particularly in reference to a meeting you did not attend. One can assume you were not referring to the board and top administrators, even after reading the state of things at Perry Central. Instead: to a couple of grandfathers.
We were tame. The greatest example, Jesus, cleansed the temple with a whip declaring, “You hypocrites, you have defiled my father’s house.” Or, another time: “He who harms one of those little ones, better a thousand millstones around his neck and dropped to the bottom of the sea.” Those are not Longfellow’s words. Those are God’s words. I suspect the emotion felt by those two grandfathers at that meeting was a little akin to the feelings of Jesus when he fashioned the whip, turned over their tables, and drove the moneychangers from the temple. So, is it safe to consider the children’s house also to be God’s house?
Relative to your pointer to show respect for elected officials whether we agree with them or not, I’m reminded of west coast eco-fanatic Timothy Treadwell, who lived with the Alaskan brown bears for 13 years videoing while singing love songs and crawling on all fours with them, until he was finally eaten alive. Poetry will cut no ice at that school board meeting. Bear in mind, this is the same board chairman who once referred to standardized testing as “foolishness,” celebrated the recent KSBA Superintendent of the Year award as proof of great leadership, and dealt with the horror of state takeover in the same meeting. Mr. Turner, your interest and concern could be better expressed by personally appearing at board meetings. Firsthand observation renders a more valid opinion.
But, closing with business at hand — it is interesting that we purchased the $4 million East Perry School building site with no passable road to it. So we immediately approve $50,000 for gravel at $27/ton. The going rate for gravel in that quantity delivered to that site should be in the $15/ton range. At that price we should have paid less than $28,000. The obvious beauty of shopping and accepting bids is to make the money go farther. The money for this entire East Perry Project will be coming out of the taxpayer pocket for the next three decades. We need to be dead serious about it, because we are paying the bill. We accepted the low bid for that project. It needs to remain the low bid.
Eddie N. Campbell,
Lost Creek, Ky.