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View Diary: Ask me anything before Election Day tomorrow! (79 comments)

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  •  What is on your wishlist for uplifting kids? (7+ / 0-)

    I don't live in Chicago, but I have been riveted by the This American Life series about Harper High School. It is heartbreaking to hear how students there are concerned with preserving their own basic safety 24 hrs/day, rather than the typical day-to-day issues a high-schooler should be thinking of, and dreaming of a fulfilling future.  

    Aside from gun control, do you have a wishlist for policies to help uplift these kids and the school staff who support them?  If money and political opposition were no object, what do you dream of doing to lift them up so they can become the wonderful and creative people they are meant to be?

    “No, Governor Romney, corporations are not people.” ~ my new Senator Elizabeth Warren

    by Domestic Elf on Mon Feb 25, 2013 at 09:13:10 AM PST

    •  Great question (8+ / 0-)

      That every child would receive a high quality education that included the arts, technology, sports, after school programs, mentoring and tutoring.  

      Also, that no matter what school they attend,  teachers and students feel safe. In addition, teachers and administrators have the support and resources they need to further the lives of their students so they can be the best they can be.

      Last but not least, communities are invested in schools, whether they have kids that attend or not.

      •  Thank you (1+ / 0-)
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        and best of luck tomorrow!

        “No, Governor Romney, corporations are not people.” ~ my new Senator Elizabeth Warren

        by Domestic Elf on Mon Feb 25, 2013 at 09:29:00 AM PST

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      •  Suggestion: (0+ / 0-)

        Make sports an extra-curricular activity like it used to be when I was in junior and senior high school in the late '50s & early '60s.

        Emphasis was on the basics of English, History, Math, we actually had a few music & chorale programs, plus industrial arts and home ec.  Senior year we had a civics class.  We had PE and most people hated it.

        Participation in sports was conditional since it was an after-or-before-school program.  If the kids in sports could not maintain a B average they were not allowed to participate in sports - and in those days the jocks were not passed as a special privilege so they could be jock stars; they were not allowed to be the dunces we see on TV nowadays as pro-sports figures who can't even speak well and have little or no real knowledge of anything other than the sports they'll have to quit when their bodies wear out or if they become injured beyond their ability to play.  [I lived in a very small farming community.  Kids in their teens often had to help out on the farm for harvesting or farm chores before or after school, and sports practices were worked around their available time away from chores at home.]

        Today high school consists of sports as the primary emphasis (or, at least the only thing that makes the news), and academic life is left by the wayside (it shows in spoken and written communication, too).  We need to reverse that trend and praise and publicize academic success.

        I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

        by NonnyO on Tue Feb 26, 2013 at 09:11:44 AM PST

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        •  Sports do not have to be (0+ / 0-)

          the traditional team sports.  Way back in the day, our PE was more oriented towards exercise for health and sports that could be continued in life without a formal team or expensive equipment.  We all loved the break in the day from classes, and I have to believe it encouraged all of us to develop life long habits of getting exercise.

          •  Yes, we had (1+ / 0-)
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            ... calisthenics in those ugly old blue one-piece (w/shorts) gym uniforms.  Class was like the second period of the day, we got sweaty, had to shower (ruined carefully coiffed hair), and budding teen awkward bodies self-consciously tried to hide behind clothing or melt into the cement floor for fear of being thought of as ugly.

            Kennedy's 'physical fitness program' started when I was about a sophomore in high school, and the day we had initial evaluations for them the entire class, boys and girls, had to run around the track in full school clothing (not gym clothes) to be timed and it was a warm day so it made a person sweat a lot.  I backed off and did a sort of walk fast thing around the track and was last to finish because I didn't want to be dripping with sweat, but I ended up dripping with sweat in spite of that.

            All those PE classes did was make me loathe PE with a passion, altho in the middle of winter when no one could go outside when it was forty degrees below zero we had indoor activities (volleyball in the gym at noon after lunch, but it didn't count as class time)..., like dancing.  Mostly silly stuff like square dancing and and waltzing and the two step and such, but at least it was creative fun instead of being tiresome, boring, and sweaty, and we didn't have to change into that horrid blue gym outfit; we could wear our regular clothing.

            When I entered college at age 41 I was complaining to my Honors English adviser "I applied to college for intellectual exercise to educate my brain, not to take PE classes like I was back in junior and senior high school again.  If someone wants to go through my scrapbooks and give me credit for the dancing I did in community theatre, I'll haul them to campus, but I don't really think PE should be required at the college level."  My adviser looked at my resumé, said "Well with your background and interests it looks like you'd probably qualify for the Honors classes.  I'm the adviser for that program.  Why don't you join the Honors program?  All you have to do is maintain a 3.25 GPA to stay in the Honors program and if you do you don't have to take PE."  Done deal.  I had a better than 3.5 GPA throughout college, was never off the Dean's List and loved the whole experience!

            Exercising one's body only gets one so far.  Intellectual exercise keeps one from going senile in old age when one can't move around all that easily any longer and has a fused spine and has had knee replacement because degenerative arthritis eats the joint cartilage and one ends up with bone rubbing on bone which is very painful.

            Sports?  Don't get me started on what a waste of money that is after high school....  Minnesota has provided three brand new stadiums and corporate welfare to two pro-sports teams and one college campus, with more in the offing for minor league teams (an amendment added in the last couple of hours before the second f##king bill was passed after Dayton became governor ~ he supported that nonsense which makes no sense to me).  'It'll provide jobs' was the excuse.  Yeah.  Temporary jobs for the duration of construction, not full-time jobs that will last for 25-30 years.  Whatever will they do when those stadiums sit empty because no one can afford to attend pro sports games..., even as the taxpayers are stuck with the cost of those glorified sandboxes?  Who'll be sorry then?  If those teams wanted new stadiums so badly, they could have paid for their new sandboxes themselves.

            Educational and medicaid programs got their funds cut, infrastructure funds for new bridges and roads and repair of same were cut..., and multimillionaire jocks & team owners got corporate welfare.  How is that fair?

            Little-known fact not repeated in media but which I remember from the day the I-35 bridge collapsed:  Pawlenty had been scheduled to meet with football team owners to hash out money for a third new stadium (the baseball and university stadiums had already been approved and were being built).  That meeting had to be cut short because of the bridge collapse..., which means any funds that could have gone for a stadium then were diverted to build a new bridge.

            Priorities regarding sports are totally f##ked - which is probably why we have such an uneducated and unintelligent populace who keep electing idiots like Dumbya, and consider electing morons like the Tundra Tramp.

            I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

            by NonnyO on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 08:29:56 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  That was a very heart wrenching series (1+ / 0-)
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      Domestic Elf

      I don't always get a chance to listen to TAL, but made a point to catch that one

      --Enlighten the people, generally, and tyranny and oppressions of body and mind will vanish like spirits at the dawn of day. - Thomas Jefferson--

      by idbecrazyif on Mon Feb 25, 2013 at 10:45:38 AM PST

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