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 Letters Published in December 6, 2006 Issue



 Dec. 6, 2006 - Letter submitted by Rachael Shepherd and Bobbie Rogers, KHS Empty Bowls Organizers

Knightstown High School proudly hosted its second annual Empty Bowls Fundraiser Dinner on Friday, December 1. Guests enjoyed a wonderful dinner of homemade soup and bread, prepared by KHS Advanced Nutrition students and took home an original ceramic bowl, designed by KHS Art students. This event, along with a silent auction of theme-filled bowls, raised nearly $3,200. Most of the money will be donated to the Cheer Guild and Food Pantry, and the remainder will be used to purchase bowls for next year's dinner.

We are truly grateful to all the people, groups, and businesses that made this event a success through their time, participation, or donations: the TASC group; Eric Cox and The Banner; KHS Principal Jim Diagostino; KHS art students and instructors Terry Dukeman and James Jahrsdoerfer; KHS Advanced Nutrition students and instructor Nancy Watson; NHS members and sponsors Angela Plank and Julie Neal; Mrs. Shepherd's English 9 classes; Belinda Cross, Lisa Mercer and the KHS French Club; coaches Ballenger and Baskicker and the KHS basketball programs; Carthage Elementary resources and aides; KHS Student Council; Amanda Rust, Mary Kay representative; Tim Edwards; Tri Kappa Sorority; Ruthie Bohnert Realty; Dr. Richard Armstrong; Psi Iota Xi Sorority; Sunshine Harding and her day care parents, Teresa Branham, Paul and Tina Horth; KHS Drama Club and Lisa Teuschler; Mays Cub Scout Pack 26's Webelos II Den and Chris Schombert; Patti Keesling; Jena Schmidt; Walnut Ridge Youth Group; Curves of Knightstown; Knightstown Friends Church DAWGS Youth Group; Cyndi Pierson and her 5th and 6th grade Art students at KIS; U.S. Post Office in Knightstown; Kid's Corner Preschool in Knightstown; Gary Clark of Herff Jones; Laura McCaffrey; every person who purchased a ticket;, and every person who participated in our silent auction. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

We are incredibly proud of our students for their efforts and for the positive way in which they represented Knightstown High School. Too often we fail to recognize the people who selflessly give of their time and talent when others are in need. Our school is filled with many such young people who willingly accepted our challenge to participate in Empty Bowls, and because of them, and all who donated or attended, others in our community will have a happy holiday.

Please plan to be a part of next year's Empty Bowls Dinner, December 2007!



 Dec. 6, 2006 - Letter submitted by Gary Snider, Suburban Mt. Comfort

After having watched the elections occur across the state and country, it appears that we have good and challenging news. The good news reflects that the people have spoken, and no matter how you voted, it is amazing to see democracy at work. The challenging news is that it is now time for our public officials to govern and lead for the common good.

We are at a critical point at the national and state level. At the state level, we are just a little more than a month away from the start of the long session of the Indiana General Assembly. Of course, this is the session when the state legislature develops a two-year budget to finance educational programs that are important to the welfare of our children, our communities and our state. Regardless of your political affiliation, there are important issues related to education:

*Adequate funding for public schools - The current funding formula does not have enough money built into it to adequately fund the delivery of instructional programs. In metropolitan school districts, the needs are even more pressing because of what the state labels their "complexity."

This term refers to the percentage of economically disadvantaged students, English as a Second Language students, special education students, and other groups of students who need extra support. Those schools with high levels of complexity need more funding to support some of the special or additional programs necessary to help those children succeed. Obviously, these programs cost money. Helping students who need extra help is part of our moral responsibility.

*Full-Day Kindergarten (FDK) - The governor and education officials have spoken for FDK in the state. If it does occur, it needs to be implemented for all children. If FDK becomes a reality, it needs to be financed.

*Funding for remedial and support programs - The state must find a way to help school districts fund summer and remedial programs to support students of all abilities.

*Public dollars for public schools - It is important that our state legislators know and understand the role that public schools play in this country.

They need to defend the public school system from financial practices that take money away from public schools in the form of vouchers and non-public charter schools. A strong public school system should be the cornerstone of any democratic society. The money we spend on public schools is an investment in economic development and the future of our children and our state.

What can you do? Go to this link on the Internet: Enter your five-digit ZIP code and it will lead you to your state legislators. They need to hear from their constituents. It is important to be an advocate for public education.



 Dec. 6, 2006 - Letter submitted by Cynthia Sturgill, Knightstown

Attention editor, readers and cat owners: I have been taking care of two male cats - one young black and white cat and one very old orange tiger cat. Both have been declawed and neutered. If these were anybody's cats, I am very sorry, but I had to take them to the animal shelter in New Castle on December 1.

Unfortunately, I cannot keep care of them - I am already taking care of too many cats as is. If you would like to claim them or if someone wants to adopt them, please call the animal shelter at (765) 529-8131 ASAP. They are very sweet cats. Again, I am sorry and truly saddened.


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