Last updated: February 19. 2013 11:19PM - 412 Views

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Career-training reform needed

The Dec. 12 Times Leader editorial concisely points out a major problem facing Luzerne County as it relates to our low ranking wages. Secondary education is cited, in particular career and technology programs that may just have been stifled or not meeting full potential because of nepotism, cronyism and fraud.

It has been my experience that meaningful career and technology programs that assist youth in meeting career goals have an impact on behavior and academic achievement, self-pride and motivation.

Many graduate entering the workforce gaining moderate to high-paying jobs. Theses grads are immediate taxpayers and contribute to economic growth.

The programs are most certainly a wise investment for any community when program goals are met. The parents gain as well as their high school grad does not go onto a four year college where completion rates are poor, and job prospects slim when questionable majors are selected.

One problem locally is that programs are taught by cousin Joe.

Because of the large space requirements, expensive equipment and the fact that a career and technology teacher may have a total of 40 students a day the cost per student often equals or exceeds college tuition.

Another problem is the belief that only the academically challenged or discipline/attendance problems should go to tech. Finally the inclusion of special needs students in programs such as welding, machine shop and automotive areas that have dangerous power equipment.

Going back less than 10 years The Times Leader did what I considered an award-winning story on the disastrous Luzerne County vocational-technical programs. They featured one of the top vocational-technical schools in the state, Lehigh County Tech Center as an outstanding example of what vocational technical programs should look like and where the high cost is most certainly justified. Unfortunately it appears that the Luzerne County educators did not see the need for change.

A countywide study of the three career and technology centers is in order to determine cost effectiveness, value to students and business and industry. The K through 12 schools in Luzerne County is in serious trouble meeting the mandated general education requirements due to fiscal cuts. This is the time and place to be sure that every tax dollar is maximized to it's fullest.

We need to mourn lost young souls

There have been a series of attacks at schools around the world. I just read that 22 children were stabbed at a school in China, the latest in a series of attacks on school children in that country.

Here in the U.S., there was Virginia Tech, the Amish school, Columbine, Red Lake and now Sandy Hook.

The powers of darkness are attacking the children, in the womb and now in the schools. Our President said the following, The majority of those who died today were children. They had their entire lives ahead of them — birthdays, graduations, weddings, kids of their own.

My question - What about the 55 million babies killed in the womb, they also had their entire lives ahead of them? Where's the compassion and tears for them?

As a country, we weep for these children and weep with their families in Connecticut, but we also need to weep for the aborted. How is it possible that a nation would have a law on its books for 40 years that would allow the killing of the innocents?

Suspected theft blows his top

Message to the scumbag who has all but taken the last of the roofing from The Station. I am sorry to know you didn't slip and fall and break your back. I hope you O.D. on the drugs you buy.

Newtown part of America's decline

Individuals' rights take precedent over individual responsibility.

Those in prison, guilty of heinous crimes, need special food, because of religious beliefs, violation of their rights. The list can go on and on.

The President of the United States, Supreme Court and federal judges have destroyed the foundation of the Judeo Christian beliefs of the founding fathers.

The shooter in Connecticut had those individual rights and the victims and their loved ones paid the price of pain and suffering. Until America gets back on track, America is doomed. The presidential election was filled with hatred, and instead of being leaders, the candidates did anything to win an election.

Where, oh where, is the leadership?

Thank God for the unwavering American spirit! I believe that is the only thing that will get us out of the mess we are in.

Does anyone else feel like they are being abandoned? I usually am an optimist, but let us examine some of the recent events.

The world around us is exploding before our eyes. (We have no credibility). Our economic future is uncertain. (In almost every aspect). People have given up looking for work. Our U.S. Ambassador to Libya was assassinated and we have yet to get a straight answer from this administration.

I could go on, but I am sure you get the idea. The American people expect and deserve some leadership. Where is it? I believe the leadership is headed for Hawaii over the holidays.

Should I expect a post card?

Richard A. Holodick Wilkes Barre Barbara Yanchek Jermyn John T. Banks Wilkes-Barre George J Kochis Kingston Fran Spencer Nanticoke

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