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Lewes, Delaware
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May 20, 2014     Cape Gazette
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May 20, 2014

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6 TUESDAY, MAY 20 - THURSDAY, MAY 22, 2014 Viewpoints Cape Gazette Letters )) Vocational education has improved dramatically I frequently read Don Flood's columns and tend to agree with his perspective on issues; howev- er I totally disagree with his com- ment that vo-tech schools should function as they have in the past. Times have changed, and in order to succeed in the competi- tive job market, vo-tech students need a broader preparation that includes not only vocational and technical skills, but higher-order thinking skills, a sound academic foundation, and personal quali- ties necessary to be successful in the workplace. These are skills that can be gained through a college education, not just from attending high school. If we elim- inate college preparatory courses from vo-tech high schools we will end up with "tracking" of students, which history proved unsuccessful, unfair and wasteful in the 1900s. The 1917 Smith-Hughes Act was a strategy developed to separate U.S. high schools in curricular tracks. Basically stu- dents were put into vocational, academic or general tracks. Throughout the years, it was determined that tracking was un- fair and wasteful. Many studies showed that "students assigned to the non-college tracks tend to be less affluent, less likely to have parents who attended col- lege, and more likely to belong to racial, ethnic or linguistic minorities who are traditionally under-represented in higher edu- cation. Tracking also is wasteful because students in non-college tracks are given less challenging coursework, and therefore do not develop their academic and intellectual capabilities as much as they would if they were chal- lenged and motivated." (Lucas 1999; Oakes 2005) During the 1980s, employers pointed out the inefficiencies of tracking and complained that vo-tech high school graduates were not gaining the thinking skills and academic knowledge necessary in the newly emerging economy. Since employers were instrumental in the backing of vocational education, Congress reevaluated the federal law au- thorizing support for vocational education. In the 1990s, the Carl Perkins Act was amended requir- ing that funds be spent only on programs that "integrate academ- ic and vocational education." Ac- cording to the U.S. Department of Education's website, "The U.S. Congress has taken action to reauthorize the Carl D. Perkins Vocational and Techni- cal Education Act of 1998. The new legislation, titled the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Educational Improvement Act of 2006, will provide increased fo- cus on the academic achievement of career and technical education Continued on page 7 in effect until May 23. So just let me pay it now and beat the summer rush. Editorial )) Cape busing plan promotes healthy kids new busing plan for Cape Henlopen School District starts with what hese days seems to be a novel idea: If you live within a half mile of school, you are expected to walk. Walking every day, morning and afternoon, is among the healthiest habits that children and anyone else can adopt. Regular daily exer- cise promotes overall fitness and helps people of all ages control their weight, and if that's not enough, numerous studies have shown simply walking every day helps prevent killers such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes. Besides promoting overall health, children who wall to school are likely to arrive calm, wide awake and ready to learn, so this plan should contribute not only to their fitness but to academic achievement as well. District officials are walking the routes themselves to ensure the 300 children who will start walking next year, if the plan is ap- proved, will have a safe path to every school. That personal commitment to the plan is a great first step toward reassuring parents their children will be safe, the key hurdle that must be overcome if the plan is to be adopted. The proposed plan also calls for double bus runs, which means that after dropping students off at the middle schools, buses will make a second run to transport elementary students. This strategy will require parents at some schools to adjust to new schedules, but it will also mean many children - some of whom ride the bus for an hour to get to school - will have shorter bus rides to school. These two changes - requiring more stu- dents to wall and shortening the time chil- dren spend on buses - are both good initia- tives that parents and other district residents should welcome. Many parents might even ask what took so long for these changes to be proposed. As healthy and sound as this busing plan is on paper, it will require that everyone watch out for the safety of the hundreds of children who will now walk to school. That should be seen not as a problem but as a benefit of the plan. When children can look to an entire community for support, they are likely to grow up not only safer, but also healthier, more confident and more ready for life ahead. Cape Gazette editorials are considered and written by members of the Cape Gazette editorial board which includes Dennis Forney, publisher; Trish Vernon, editor; Dave Frederick, sports editor; Laura Ritter, news editor; and Jen Ellingsworth, associate editor. Weather Picture )) WRITE NOW Letters must be signed and include a telephone number for verification. Please keep letters to 650 words or fewer. We reserve the right to edit for content and length. Write to Cape Gazette, PO Box 213, Lewes, DE 19958; fax 645-1664; or email news- DENY HOWETH PHOTO RHODODENDRONS WERE FRAGRANT surrounding a forest bench at the home of Pat and Carl Honecker, whose Villages of Old Landing home was part of the Sussex Gardeners' garden tour and plant sale May 17. ) For local weather, including highs and lows see page 47 Web Poll )) Most responders prefer picnics and the beach My favorite summer activity is:? On the water 35.8% Picnics/beach 43.7% Making money 20.5% The total of votes counted was 215. To parlicipate in the current web poll, visit Cape Gazette Volume 20 No. 89 Publisher, Dennis Forney, Ext. 303 Editor, Trish Vernon, Ext. 315 Office Manager, Kathy Emery, Ext. 305 Sports Editor, Dave Frederick, Ext. 304 News Editor, Laura Ritter, Ext. 320 Associate Editor, Jen Ellingsworth, Ext. 319 Copy Editor, Bernadette Hearn, Ext. 316 News Henry Evans, Ext. 336 Ron MacArthur., Ext. 318 Ryan Mavity, Ext. 337 Nick Roth, Ext. 317 Melissa Steele, Ext. 338 Chris Flood, Ext. 335 Molly MacMillan Sports Writers Tim Bamforth Frederick Schranck Contributors Susan Frederick Nancy Katz Chris Antonio Eric Burnley Denise Clemons John McDonald Bob Yesbek Don Flood Chris Wildt Rob Rector Webmaster Catherine M. Tanzer Photographers Dan Cook Steven Billups Deny Howeth Production Coordinator Norma Parks, Ext. 309 Classified Sand/Barr, Ext. 300 Kathy Long, Ext. 302 Advertising Cindy Bowlin, Ext. 307 Amanda Neafie, Ext. 306 Chris Rausch, Ext. 312 Steve Lhotsky, Ext. 313 Andrew Thomas, Ext. 310 Kathy McGinty, Ext. 311 Production Staff Teresa Rodriguez Kristin Sinnott Edwin Krumrn Christopher D. Foster Sherresha Powell Bob Yesbek DISTRIBUTION Joni Weber Scott Vickers Tom King SUBSCRIPTIONS Melissa Wilkins, Email for news, letters: Email for advertising: Email to subscribe: Email for web: About Cape Gazette: The Cape Gazette (USPS 010294), known office of publication at 17585 Nassau Commons Blvd., Lewes, DE 19958, is published every Tuesday and Friday by Cape Gazette Ltd. Periodicals postage paid at Lewes, Delaware. Subscriptions are available at $39 per year in Sussex County; $56 elsewhere. Address all correspondence to : Cape Gazette, P.O. Box 213, Lewes, DE 19958 Telephone: 302-645-7700 FAX: 302-645-1664 POSTMASTER: Send address changes to The Cape Gazette, P.O. Box 213 Lewes, DE 19958