Visalia school district can do better for students
The April 10th report in the Sun-Gazette [front page, titled “Seven Visalia schools among lowest performing in the state”] was a great service to the Visalia school community. Your diligence and effort at discovery the dimensions of the problems at VUSD should be applauded by all of us in Visalia. At too many levels the children, families, and staff of the VUSD community are being injured by the decisions made by the current leadership. Those years lost to poor direction and inadequate support for VUSD’s teachers cannot be made up. Students at the elementary and middle schools will have difficulty recovering from the poor decisions made at the VUSD district office. Many Golden West and Mt. Whitney students may have had their opportunity to attend a CSU or a UC diminished. The information revealed to the citizens of Visalia and, importantly, the VUSD Board of Trustees can lead to a change of course for VUSD. The VUSD Board members are intelligent people who want to serve our community. I am hopeful they will use this information to make good decisions for the children and our whole town.
Water quality should be everyone’s concern in California
I am writing to you about the issue of water: a topic that affects the communities that lack it, but also those who have access to water. As California residents we all share the relief of being out of the drought that affected all. Coming from an agricultural background we know how important water is for everyone to feed their families; all are affected: farm laborers, contractors, field owners, etc.
The quality of water is as important to our orange fields as it is to our families and homes. Without access to good quality water, we run the risk of having health issues triggered by the poor quality of water. Although Lindsay water has not been declared unable to use, there was still a warning sent out about the quality of our water. Reports have been published about efforts in improving the quality of water, but when are those efforts going to show? Water has been a major issue, even before the drought. Technology has been advancing left and right at rates even the most “tech savvy” person can’t keep up, so where are the water improvements? Research done has shown that the DBP in water has caused the chlorination of the water. Stricter water testing has been implemented, but to what use is that if the water quality is not improving? More time and money should be spent on assuring that our water quality improves to minimize the damages to our crops and health.
I know that science is complex, but if we have made it to the moon in a time where technology was not too advanced, then we should be able to find a way to at least improve water quality. One way to improve water quality, but also engage the community is by hosting competitions in schools where students can learn about the water purification process, but also create their own. Although I personally did not attend Lindsay High School, I know there is a lot of promise in those kids, they all just need an extra push and incentive to seek the many opportunities this world has for them. The student’s abilities are covered by the low-income shadows that scare them to seek the light. Holding experiments like these are not always affordable, but just like high school seniors are told there are many scholarship opportunities for them, there are also grants available to conduct events like this. It is all a matter of seeking the opportunities.
I appreciate the time you took to read about my concern of the water in our community. Like many, I hope this is not a problem that takes much longer to be solved.
Thank you for your time and consideration.