EDUCATION: Save teaching jobs
The U.S. Senate needs to pass the Keep Our Educators Working Act — which contains the $23 billion Education Job Fund — now.
U.S. Secretary Arne Duncan has stated that up to 300,000 educators may be laid off in the upcoming school year due to budget cuts hitting state legislatures across the nation.
When educators lose their jobs, children lose too. Layoffs lead to more crowded classrooms, and fewer counselors, nurses, reading specialists and other critically needed educators who help ensure that every child gets individual attention.
There exists a clear antidote to stem the tide of layoffs — passage of the Keep our Educators Working Act. The legislation would save an estimated 250,000 jobs, according to the Education Commission of the States, similar to how the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act saved hundreds of thousands of education jobs last year.
The House has already passed an education jobs fund. The Senate should follow the lead of the House in putting students and America’s future first. Congress needs to pass this legislation and keep kids learning and educators working.
Andrea Budwill, Laveen
OIL SPILL: Stop blame game
In response to Jessica Schneider’s letter, “End oil addiction now,” she naturally blames “Big Oil,” (BP in particular) for all the “irreversible damage to our planet” due to “global climate change,” which until it was debunked, was called “global warming.” But where does the real blame belong? I blame all the organizations that restrict all of the more accessible areas for oil drilling (ANWR comes to mind). That forces the oil companies to look farther out in the ocean, and to drill under a mile of water. What did these people think was going to happen when there was a (inevitable) problem like we have now under all that water? Actually, with 30,000-plus wells in operation, statistically that is a good record.
Now she says it is “urgent” to hurry and pass climate change legislation this year. I’ve got news for her: We’ll be using oil for a long time. Yes, we need alternative forms of energy, but it’s not going to happen overnight. We should be drilling as much oil as we can safely (not under a mile of water) right here in America. Think of all the money we would have to do research for alternative energy if we weren’t sending a half-trillion dollars to other countries for their oil, and all the jobs that would create right here.
Jessica is associated with the Tempe National Wildlife Federation. I’m sure she is aware of the tens of thousands of raptors killed every year due to the windmills we’re building, isn’t she?
Jim Galpin, Chandler
Letters policy: Click here to submit a letter. Please be brief (no more than 300 words) and type or print name, address, city and phone number for verification. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.