Tonawanda News

Editorials

August 10, 2013

TUCKER: Bits and pieces from around town

Tonawanda News — Laura Marohn, president of the Friends of the City of Tonawanda Library emailed to fill in the blanks about how the beautiful new landscaping at the library came about.

“It was a cooperative effort between our director, Glenn Luba, and the Friends of the Library,” Laura said. “Glenn has done all the planning and with the help of our maintenance person, Karen Wiles, and a senior page, John Wacker, did all the planting and upkeep. The Friends of the Library paid for all the plants and trees plus the topsoil, mulch, and rocks for the rock garden.”

If you haven’t noticed how lovely the library looks, be sure to drive past — or better yet, stop in and say hi.

Bad Mistake

In a Soundoff item a week ago, the person who called in to tell about the generous help she received during the recent wind and rain storm, wanted to be sure Jenna Koch of Tonawanda received some recognition. It seems Jenna helped neighbors, borrowed a generator, paid for gas, took care of neighbors, checked on oxygen during and after the storm. The caller, no doubt one of the people she helped, just gave Jenna’s last name, but did not spell it. The reporter who puts Soundoff into the system, assumed that Jenna’s last name is spelled Cook. However, anyone who knows Jenna probably figured out she is George and Betsy Koch’s daughter as they, too are caring folks and as the say, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Great work Jenna, sorry for the misspelling.

Teacher’s Plight

Because there are many teachers in our family, this may be a bit biased. The question asked on the front page of Thursday’s News was “Are kids getting dumber?” An emphatic NO from this corner. Are the teachers at fault for low state test scores? NO. Is the state at fault for not knowing what’s really going on in schools? YES. Teachers are retiring in unusually high numbers this year. Not that they don’t love their vocation or that they don’t like the students — we all know the answer: The state education department. Of course there have to be standards. But to ask teachers to teach by testing is backwards. And then, as a slap at teachers, the state will judge teachers on how well their students do on tests. This is so wrong it boggles the mind. In Buffalo as in any “poor” school district, the problem with students not attending school is often the parents, some of whom don’t see the importance of school, others who might wish their son or daughter could find a technical school to learn real-life skills. The latter idea holds true in every school district. There are kids who just don’t belong in the “testing” environment. A pat on the back to BOCES classes and colleges like NCCC and ECC. 

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