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September 24, 1999     Cape Gazette
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September 24, 1999

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6 - CAPE GAZETTE, Friday, September 24 - September 30, 1999 VIEWPOINTS Editorial Intergovernmental cooperation, at last! No man is an island, and neither is a city. Rehoboth Beach offi- cials are rightfully concerned with the continued development and growth outside of its own domain. Many people are under the false impression that Rehoboth Beach's city limits reach out perhaps all the way to Route 24. They don't. The City of Rehoboth Beach is a one-square-mile area that Stops at the Lewes-Rehoboth Canal to the west and the Shopping center adja- cent to the elementary school to the south. Sussex County Council, with input from the Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT), controls the outlying areas between Rehoboth Beach and Lewes. Any new commercial Or residential development that springs up between the city limits and Route 24 can have a direct and adverse impact upon the City of Rehoboth Beach itself. A perfect case in point is the retail complex, small as it may be, slated to be built adja- cent to Henlopen Station on Rehoboth Avenue Extended. There are already enough accidents and "near misses" in that area with vehicles attempting to turn left into Henlopen Station and the condominiums behind it. The new retail area is requesting its own entryway, which will only exacerbate the problem on this heavily traveled roadway. Meanwhile, Rehoboth Beach officials stand by and watch help- lessly as new residential and retail complexes continue to dot the drawing board, knowing full well the impact they will have on traf- fic trying to enter and leave the Nation's Summer Capital. They also realize the impact this can have on emergency vehicles trying to reach the latest accident or fire. After much prodding by such activists as Mable Granke and Mary Campbell, both members of the Rehoboth Beach Planning Commission, there is a movement afoot to improve intergovernmen- tal cooperation between Cape Region municipalities and county and state officials. A meeting, which was postponed from last week due to Hurricane Floyd, has been rescheduled for 7 p.m., Wednesday, Sept. 29, in the Rehoboth Beach Commissioners Room to embark upon a discussion of how these governmental bodies can better plan together for con- tinued growth. It is hoped this is the start of a long and improved relationship of cooperation between these entities. It is also hoped that concerned people in the community attend the meeting to voice their support for this initiative. As we all know, there's strength in numbers. Letters The Weather Picture Sept. 16 77 67 Sept. 17 74 60 .07 I Sept. 18 73 56 None| Sept. 19 76 53 None| Sept. 20 77 56 None| Sept. 21 74 64 None| Sept. 22 69 55 1.601 As reported by the Lewes Board of Public Works Power Plant, an official U.S. Weather Station Glenn Vernon photo Hurricane Floyd is only a wet and windy memory, but we're not out of the woods yet, as Atlantic waters keep churning up new storms. So far, Cape Region beaches remain healthy, as proven from this vista at Cape Henlopen State Park. Accountability a covert political ploy The following letter was sent to Gov. Tom Carper, with a copy submit- ted to the Cape Gazette for publica- tion. The so-called educational Accountability Act needs more public outcry as to what that "Act" has become: a covert political ploy using children and the educational system as pawns and leverage for political gain. Many politicians, by their endorsement of the act, are pandering to the ethnic group from whence it originated. This act makes our public school teachers responsible for student fail- ures and would make them account- able to a repressive bureaucratic con- trol by threats to certification, job security, censorship, etc. No good can come of any of this. Any organized group of a few nonperforming and hostile students in a class or public school could ruin a good teacher by concerted action, along with the sup- port of their parents. Unfortunately, every school system contains these harmful elements, along, ironically, with highly motivated and high per- forming students who do not cause trouble or generate complaints, and who may even emulate their teachers. The recent public recorded history (newspaper accounts) of a high stan- dards, dedicated math teacher, Adele Jones, attests to the cruel policy of our top educational administrators. When that same policy is mandated by law, which is exactly what the Accountability Act would become if enacted, great harm will be done to our educational system. Accountability resides primarily within the student, his or her parents and home environment, which are beyond state control. Surely you and our legislators must be aware of those simple, basic facts. The coercive potential of the Accountability Act against teachers is unlimited: arbitrary transfers, upping their educational requirements, demo- tions, unpleasant teaching assign- ments, firings, with little or no recourse by the teachers, elimination of school boards or lessening of their authority and loss of local control. I believe that many teachers and the general public remain silent on the issue of the Accountability Act - the former, for fear of retaliation on the job; the latter, due to the failure to understand its inherent evils. Some teachers may be enticed by the bureaucratic "carrot and stick" technique, i.e., if you support the Accountability Act, we can get you more money. (If you don't we'll get you.) How do you 'get' a teacher? Well, you write him or her an official letter saying, "Dear so-and-so, a recent survey of your students shows an alarmingly low academic perfor- mance indicative of their need for exposure to better teaching skills; therefore, under section X of the new educational enhancement code Z, it is evident that your teaching perfor- mance needs Upgrading. Accordingly, be advised to submit a plan to attend an educational institution where said enhancement may be acquired. It is imperative that you respond within 10 days to this advisory. Compliance may help ensure your future teaching certification, blah, blah." Under these conditions, teachers, in order to protect themselves, may reluctantly: lower their grading system to put all into a higher artificial acad- emic level, which would certainly please those in favor of the AccOuntability Act. The fallacy of this action will be proved by subse- quent lower or unimproved standard test scores. In general, today's teachers are a dedicated, high-class, admirable group of professionals, role models for their students and repositories of academic heritage. The so-called Accountability Act, if legislated would be not only intimidation of our teachers, but an outrageous insult, and both humiliating and a shameful treatment of them. More to come. Robert N. Hopkins Milton Write Now Letters must be signed and include a telephone number for ver- ification, Please keep letters to750 words or lss. Write to Cape Volume 7 No. 18 Publisher Dennis Fomey DNF @ capegazette.corn Editor Trish Vernon newsroom@ Associate Editor Kerry Kester kester @ News Editor Michael Short mshoit @ News Steve Hoenigmann steveh @ Jim Cresson Rosanne Pack rpack@ Jen Ellingsworth Janet Andrelczyk Photographer Angie Moon amoon @ capegazette.corn Sports EdRor Dave Frederick Sports Writers .tim Barnforth tbamforth @ Frederick Schranck Fschranck@ Advertising Cindy Forestieri cindyl@ Sharon Hudson Nancy Stenger Joseph n joseph @ Classified Sandy Barr Office Manager Kathy Emery kernety @ Circulation Harry Stoner Production Coordinator Deidre Sudimak Production Staff Susan Porter Chris Wildt Contributors: Susan Frederick Nancy Katz Geoff Vernon E-mail for news, letters: newsroom @ E-mail for advertising: production @ E-mail to subscribe: kemery@ The Cape Gazette (USPS 010294) is published by Cape Gazette Limited every Friday at the Midway Shopping Center, Highway One, Rehoboth Beach DE 19971. Second class postage paid at Rehoboth Beash, Delaware. Address all correspondence to Cape Gaz- ette, PO Box 213, Lewes, Delaware 19958. Telephone: 302-645-7700. FAX: 645-1664. Subscriptions are available at $25 per year in Sussex County; $40 elsewhere. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to The Cape Gazette, P.O. Box 213, Lewes, Delaware 19958. "1 am simply a human being, more or less." Saul Bellow