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Published: Tuesday, 7/22/2008

Background necessary to teach math

I agree with The Blade and the national math panel's report that mathematics is not the strength of many elementary teachers.

Several reasons for this discrepancy and some remedies were cited. One remedy not mentioned: Recruit potential elementary teachers from among college students who actually have at least a minor in mathematics.

It would then be easy to provide whatever extra training they would need to be "elementary math specialists." They would only teach math in the elementary schools, much like we presently have at the seventh through 12th-grade levels.

Math has a cumulative body of knowledge beginning in the elementary school.

It is critical that students know their math fundamentals like the back of their hands. Sadly, that is not happening.

California now requires eighth graders to take algebra. Michigan is on the verge of requiring students to have Algebra 2 to graduate from high school.

We provide strong coaches for our student athletes. Doesn't it make good sense to have teachers with strong math backgrounds focusing only on teaching math? As was noted, documented weaknesses of students islinked to the math weaknesses of their teachers.

Daniel Dlugas

Temperance

Toledo could lead in 'green' building

I applaud Commissioner Tina Skeldon Wozniak on her aims to create a "Lucas County Sustainability Commission" but much more can be done than she proposes.

She touts the fact that the new downtown arena may receive a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design accreditation, however the LEED system is a flawed one at best. It resulted from a failed compromise between the American Institute of Architects and the federal government and works on a point system that awards points for "lack of asbestos," among other things.

The technology exists for buildings that can use geothermal heating and cooling, pump electricity back onto the grid, regulate UV light intake, use natural air currents for ventilation, and more. The current "green" face of the county is a good start in the right direction but not nearly enough. Lucas County needs to get serious about going green by making facilities that eclipse even the highest LEED standards, fostering the infant green industries in the city, and providing tax incentives for the use of green technologies. We need to make the jump from "environmentally friendly" to "sustainable."

Toledo has the opportunity to reinvent itself and become a national leader in the green sector. Let's make sure we do it right.

Ryan Connolly

Sylvania

Seek advice from fellow Republicans

I have been proud to serve as a precinct judge for the Lucas County Republican Party for the last six years. The day before the vote to elect either Bob Reichert or Jon Stainbrook as county chairman, The Blade ran an editorial that essentially endorsed "activist" (The Blade's title) Stainbrook by inferring Mr. Reichert was a bad choice because he was the incumbent "in the party of Tom Noe and James Brennan, Sr."

Tom Noe is a convicted felon. I find it reprehensible that The Blade used guilt by association to slander the good name of Mr. Brennan and, by innuendo, that of Mr. Reichert.

What did James Brennan, Sr., ever do to The Blade? Once again, in a June 18 editorial ("Stainbrook's charge"), The Blade advised Mr. Stainbrook no to be "too comfortable with the status quo in the form of the likes of James Brennan, Sr. and Tom Noe."

Only a handful of people took part in the election of Mr. Stainbrook and, according to The Blade, many of his supporters had never voted Republican before. Mr. Stainbrook continues to get more advice in this editorial to "create a party that's clean, inclusive, decent, respected." My party, from Dwight Eisenhower to John McCain, is already clean, inclusive, decent, and respected.

If Mr. Stainbrook takes The Blade's additional advice to "establish a new party credo," I hope he also takes advice from fellow Republicans who actually support our presidential candidate.

Joyce Lewis

Sylvania Township

Rude to force others to act more politely

The author of the July 8 letter about rudeness at a concert complains about fellow concertgoers standing during Carrie Underwood's performance, yet fails to realize her own rudeness and ignorance.

Her pestering of others undoubtedly worsened her fellow concertgoers' experience. The author displayed discourteous manners by trying to force others to abide by her guidelines. From her perspective, others may have been rude, but from the perspective of the people around her, she was surely viewed as an impolite lady who exhibited behavioral characteristics similar to a young child.

How does she expect people to behave at a concert, anyway?

Corey McNeilly

Middleburg Heights, Ohio

Scott has earned right to be preserved

Scott High School has earned the right to continue to exist in its stately manner because it exemplifies and pays tribute to not only the stature of Jesup W. Scott but also to the visionary architects who planned the building, the construction workers who proudly and skillfully built it, the scholarly faculties, and, last but not least, the students and their families past, present, and future who contributed and will continue to contribute to their communities.

Susan Hirsch

Sylvania Township

School a landmark, part of city history

It is beyond my comprehension why there would be any discussion about demolishing Scott High School. It is a landmark and integral part of the history of Toledo. Every effort should be made to restore the school as is.

Our history is replete with lost buildings. Why should Scott face the same fate?

Jacqueline Kennedy many years ago was a singular force in preserving the history of the White House. Is there no one who can do as much for the significant history of Toledo?

Mary Utrup

Scottwood Avenue

TPS wants support but doesn't give it

As a property owner, I'm continually being asked to support ever-increasing tax levies to benefit the Toledo Public Schools.

Recently, we saw TPS demand its share of the tax base of the development of the Marina District, and yet TPS feels justified giving jobs to out-of-state workers rather than giving the jobs to the very people whom they expect to support and pay for their levies.

Maybe I'm myopic, but it looks to me as if "there's something wrong with this picture!"

Stephanie Bluni

Douglas Road

Renzi's dedication is worthy of honor

I would like to congratulate staff writer Sally Vallongo on her July 6 story in The Blade regarding the life of Frances Renzi.

The article was so well written that I could not put it down.

I am not familiar with Ms. Renzi's career but I am thinking what a great life she has had. Her students were blessed to have had such a dedicated, knowledgeable, and loving lady to teach them.

In the world we live in today, there are very few people who enjoy the work they do, not only for the income but for the other people's enjoyment. Ms. Renzi is one who loves her work and is very dedicated to making other lives happy.

I would like to salute her and thank her for her dedication.

Nona Croskey

Holland

I recently had the opportunity to do an outdoor job in Oregon. Unfortunately, it was within breathing distance of the refinery. After a few days, I quit.

I hope the new coke plant never gets built. I feel extremely sorry for all the residents within any distance of the refinery. I look forward to the day when we have clean, safe, renewable energy.

JoAnne VanSparrentak

Grand Rapids, Ohio



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