America’s charter school movement celebrates its 25th anniversary this month. Since the first charter school opened in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1992, the number of charters nationwide has grown to about 7,000, serving three million students.
Charter schools are public schools that operate according to a charter granted by a sponsoring agency (like a school district, a university, or a department of education). In exchange for independence from many regulations applicable to traditional public schools and unionized school staff, charters agree to standards of accountability for student achievement. This allows charters to focus on innovative ways to meet students’ educational needs. Continue reading
I was in the stands at the stadium when the Arizona Diamondback’s contested—and ultimately defeated—the New York Yankees in the 2001 World Series.
Prior to the game, before an audience of many thousands of baseball fans, Mr, Ray Charles sang “America the Beautiful.” When he sang, my daughter and I cried, thrilled by the soul of the magnificent American patriot Ray Charles. Continue reading
February 3, 1959 is the “day the music died.” That’s the day Buddy Holly, Richie Valens, and the Big Bopper were killed when their plane crashed and burned in an Iowa cornfield, a day immortalized in Don McLean’s “Bye, Bye, Miss American Pie.”
September 24, 2017 will go down in history as the day the NFL died. It died because its pampered, babied, overgrown millionaires showed an utter lack of respect for their country and their flag and insulted every working American who buys tickets to watch them play a game. Continue reading
Today, State Senator Jackie Winters, R-Salem, announced that she has filed papers to run for re-election.
In September we celebrate some serious holidays, such as Labor Day (September 2nd), and U.S. Constitution Day on the 17th. But, we also take time out of our busy, hectic schedules to have some fun while we celebrate National Teddy Bear Day (the 9th), and Fortune Cookie Day (the 13th), along with month-long tributes to Classical Music, Square Dancing, and Little League Baseball. Continue reading
One of the most pernicious distortions of the plain meaning of the Constitution is the conceit that U.S. citizenship automatically belongs to anyone born in America.
A correct interpretation and application of the 14th Amendment makes this clear. This amendment, ratified in 1868, was enacted for one simple purpose: to grant citizenship to former slaves who had been born on American soil. Continue reading
Efforts to block and sabotage pipelines hurt jobs, economic growth, middle class, human safety
The radical environmentalist war on fossil fuels has opened a new front: a war on pipelines.
For years, activist zealots claimed the world was rapidly depleting its oil and natural gas supplies. Continue reading
If human emissions made Irma worse, did they also bring the 12-year lull in Cat 4-5 hurricanes?
Hurricanes Harvey and Irma brought out the best in us. Millions of Americans are giving money, toil and sweat to help victims rebuild. Unfortunately, the storms also highlighted some people’s baser instincts.
Some advanced ideological commitments to campaigns to “keep fossil fuels in the ground,” raise energy costs and reduce living standards. Others hyped Harvey’s record rainfalls, claiming carbon dioxide emissions made the Gulf of Mexico warmer and its air more moisture-laden. A few were just obnoxious. Continue reading
What might we learn when we witness the suffering of others? Do we learn that some persons appear to not “suffer” well, while others seem to endure their suffering patiently?
The question should be what do we know about the suffering of others when we have not personally suffered what they have suffered?
What do we learn about ourselves when we must forego suffering? How well or poorly do we bear suffering?
Can suffering, somehow, be a blessing? In a way! No one begs God to bless us with suffering. We do, if we’re Christians, ask God to give us the strength to suffer in His name to his Glory. Continue reading
I looked forward to my very first day of school with mixed emotions. It was 1957, summer was over, and days of aimless fun were coming to an end. On the other hand, there was excitement about that big complex of brick buildings four crosswalks from our house, Hillview Crest Elementary School. Finally, there was the trepidation that every youngster feels about leaving the parental nest and facing up to the responsibilities of being an American student.
I don’t think I slept a wink that Sunday night. What would my teacher be like, my classmates? I’d only known family playmates, like my own cousins, or kids that lived on my own block. On Monday morning I’d be thrown in with the children of society at large, and the institution of compulsory education. I had no idea what to expect. Continue reading