Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas

I wish everyone a Very Merry Christmas as well as a Blessed Christmas. 

Thursday, December 23, 2010

"Education Reform Needed"

On  Tuesday, December 14, 2010 "The Telegraph" printed in Columbus, Georgia and distributed in Middle Georgia, U. S. A. contained an interesting article by Brandon Brock entitled "Education Reform Needed."

This Young Scholar who is a Junior at Mary Persons High School of Monroe County, Georgia certainly appears to have a real sense of what an education should be.  I will quote the last three paragraphs of his article here:

"There is a misunderstanding of terms in the academic community.  The State Board of Education would have you believe understanding mean doing well on a test.  But true understanding as it elates to acquisition of knowledge cannot be measured in such a way.  It is impossible to measure because understanding something is personal and lies within an individual.  But that is inconvenient for the state."

"It cannot be proven, so it doesn't exist.  The only way to educate someone is to prove they are educated.  And the proof, in their system, lies in the test scores."

"This system defies the very essence of humanity.  Students lack the ability to think critically, and it is due to this flawed system.  This is nothing less than academic socialism.?"

I would suggest that young Brandon Brock has it right.  We do need citizens who can process information.  We do need citizens who can take a problem and solve it by evaluating all of the information which is applicable and then develop a real solution.

I salute young Brandon Brock for his ability to tell it like it is.  As I read the column I could not but think of Aaron Neville's Song "Tell It Like It Is" of 1966.  Certainly a different situation; but none the less, an individual who certainly relates to a problem!   Well Done Brandon!!!!!!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Brown and Williamson Employees
Monthly Breakfast

The Third Friday of Each Month has been set aside by former Brown and Williamson Employees to engage in Fellowship at the Cracker Barrel on Eisenhower Parkway in Macon, Georgia.

Last Friday, December 17, 2010 was no exception.  The hour for this fellowship opportunity has been set at 10:00 A.M. which allows everyone to sleep in if they so choose.

I attended this past Friday and everyone in attendance agreed that the Fellowship is great as well as the Food.  We also discussed the opportunity to support each other as we engage in the normal events in our respective lives.  Several families were experiencing health issues as well as several who had to cope with medical issues brought on by recent accidents.  We all realize that we are not alone in the challenges of life.  That is one of the great benefits of this Monthly Fellowship.  I appreciate each and all of my Former Fellow Workers.

Have a Blessed and Merry Christmas - Each and Everyone of You!!!!!

Warm regards,

Water Boy, Power Packer, Bag Boy, Paper Boy and Water Boy

a.k.a.  Alan

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Winter Break Shopping

I have fond memories of my youth when my Parents celebrated Christmas every December.  I feel sorry for the students who now get a "Winter Break" for the last weeks of December. 

I have yet to receive a "Sales" flyer with my local newspaper announcing the "Winter Break Gift Sale." 

Maybe if enough of us are engaged in saying "Merry Christmas" to our Friends and Neighbors we can reverse this trend to be politically correct. 

As an alternative to the message I read on this sign at a local Elementary School here in Bibb County Georgia may I conclude this Blog entry with this message for you:

Merry Christmas To You and Your Loved Ones.  Enjoy The Christmas Season and Do Not Forget the Christmas Gifts!!!!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Wreaths Across America

Andersonville National Cemetery

Andersonville, Georgia

December 11, 2010

 Cadets from the Civil Air Patrol headquartered in Griffin,Georgia awaiting the ceremony.
 The Color Guard Waiting for the Ceremony

 Seven Wreaths to Honor Our Nation's Heroes
U. S. Army
U. S. Navy
U. S. Marines
U. S. Air Force
U.S. Air Force
U. S. Merchant Marines
U. S. Prisoners of War

 A member of the American Revolution Society Presents a Proclamation
The Young Men and Women of the Civil Air Patrol headquartered in Griffin, Georgia certainly represented their Organization, them selves and their families in an excellent manner.  They are shown here as everyone awaited the ceremony.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Bibb County Georgia
Board of Education
Pay Scheme for the Superintendent

Of course I am seeing "Red" when every I read in the print media or view the electronic media the news that our Bibb County Georgia Board of Education is contemplating the pay scheme for the Candidate to lead our Bibb County School System.

The first concept that crosses my mind is why do we need to expend such a large sum of money for a leader of our School System?

"For example, the Commanding Officer of a Nuclear Powered Aircraft Carrier in our U. S. Navy is a full Captain who must also be an Aviator."

"Base Pay for a Captain with over 30 Years Service is about $11,000.00 per month. That would compute to about $133,000.00 per year. Of course Allowances for Housing would depend on the Commanding Officers Family Status. I state this figure of 133 thousand to give everyone a standard for what our Military Heroes draw in pay."

As you can all appreciate the Commanding Officer of a Carrier have the lives of over 5000 Sailors, the value of 80 to 90 high tech aircraft and the safety of the Ship as his major responsibilities.  Compare that to a School Superintendent in any County in Georgia.
Of course we all know that our Nations Heroes serve, not for the pay, but for the opportunity to insure our way of life and to also protect and uphold our Standards and Values and to promote those standards and values throughout the World."

Admittedly running a County School System is quite different from Commanding any Ship in our U. S. Navy; but I do find it very interesting that School Boards in Georgia think that they can purchase good educations for their Scholars by paying great sums of money to the Superintendent.

We all know  that it is not what a Superintendent makes that sets the achievements a County School System attains. For instance Houston County appears to perform much better than Bibb with more Scholars than Bibb for less of a Salary for their Leader.
I know that working in Macon and Bibb County may be considered dangerous by some, but let me also quickly point out that Military Service is often considered dangerous. It just depends where our Commander in Chief sends the various units on deployment.
While I certainly can appreciate the fact that Georgia has no standard pay table for Superintendents; one could quickly get the impression that "high pay" will guarantee great performance of the Scholars. You and I know, and I am also confident that most taxpayers also realize that this concept is totally incorrect.
I know for a fact that the cost of living in Macon, Georgia is much less than in Rochester, MN. You do not need a snow shovel down here. I also conducted some research on the internet and learned that the cost of living calulator revealed this information:

If you have an income of $175,000.00 in Macon, Georgia it would cost you over $231,000.00 in Rochester, MN to have comparable housing and the same standard of living.

Therefore if our School Board sees fit to give the current candidate from Rochester $200,000.00 it would be like receiving $264,000.00 in Rochester, MN dollars.
So, lets look at this closely. If the current candidate in Rochester currently has an income of $171,000.00 he would in effect be receiving a $83,000.00 raise it he took a job here in Bibb County.
I realize that it may be too late to actually point this out to our Bibb County School Board but we all know that tax revenue in Georgia, just as in most of our United States, is not generating the funds necessary to maintain the standard of living we all enjoyed just a few years ago.
Most every Governmental organization, except for the Federal Government, is facing budget shortfalls. Yet we have a School Board that appears to think that by throwing enough money at a potential leader will solve our education problems in Bibb County, Georgia.
I will go back to the example I printed in "Navy" ink in the early portion of this Blog We need a Servant leader to bring Bibb's education out of the pit we now find ourselves in.
I would suggest that we also need "Common Sense" among our duly elected leaders.