Education is expensive at all levels but it is highest at the lowest levels. I don't mean in terms of money, I mean in terms of loss. Recently the Governor announced a possible proration of the EducationMore >> WSFA began serving you on Christmas day 55 years ago. From color television to high definition digital television and, soon, mobile television we've appreciated being welcomedMore >> Our area high school students have showcased incredible talents academically and athletically this year. From Wetumpka High School winning the state robotics championship to Reeltown, Brantley, PikeMore >> The state of Alabama continues to increase the money spent on retirement benefits for state and education workers. But it is still falling short of fully funding its total liabilities and the gap isMore >> The city of Birmingham has its share of unmet challenges but in one area they set the bar for all of us in the state - running successful United Way campaigns. The city kept its long streak alive ofMore >> Editorial Health Care Help 12-10-09 Nearly 100,000 people in the River Region rely on local emergency rooms for routine medical services. That clearly doesn't serve patients orMore >> Editorial Feedback 12-8-09 Our advocacy for Charter Schools in Alabama drew this email response: "Charter schools are a risk in Alabama, I think people know that. On the other hand,More >> Nationally, Charter schools show no difference in student performance than local public school options in nearly half of the schools and more than a third deliver results significantly worse. But nearlyMore >> The holiday season is here and many are well on their way with holiday shopping. As shoppers scurry in and out of stores, one of the number one questions on everyone's mind is "What gift should I buy?".More >> We certainly have much to be thankful for as we celebrate with family and friends this weekend. Alabama fans are cheering the best defense in the country and a potential football national championshipMore >> We pay local taxes to get services and enhance our quality of life. We don't pay them to settle lawsuits. But if that happens, we should now. It's our money. Montgomery's mayor says the city would notMore >> Our Race Relations editorial this week drew this response from Patricia Russell from Pike Road: “Your last comment in the editorial is the bottom line as far as I’m concerned. The character and moralMore >> Whether choosing an Auburn football coach, Montgomery County Public Schools Superintendent, or President of the United States, the past year reflected both the past and the present reality in our community:More >> You offered plenty of feedback on our Taxing Troubles editorial this week. James Henry emailed: “If the Department of Revenue and the local revenue office would crack down on current use abuse a lotMore >> You get what you pay for in this world. That’s certainly true in Alabama, where we collect the lowest state and local taxes per person in the country, and rank near the bottom of all states in key measuresMore >> Alabama's Abandoned Cemeteries: What to do?
Whether it's the mystery of death itself or our curiosity about the past or just the downright uniqueness of each one of them... most of us find cemeteriesMore >> Langford lesson: Know who you vote for
Last week Birmingham Mayor Larry Langford was convicted on 60 counts of bribery, sentenced to prison and ousted from office.
While Langford's case is certainlyMore >> You gave plenty of feedback on our recent editorial on diversity.
Yolanda Serritelli responded: "I couldn't resist taking time to express my appreciation and vote of approval after hearing your editorial.More >> The best high school in the state is Loveless Academic Magnet. It's also considered one of the best in the nation, regularly showcasing National Merit Scholarship students. Brewbaker Technology MagnetMore >> Next year's census will show less than one in four households in our country will be inhabited by a married couple with children.
It will likely also show that in the two most populous states in America,More >> Parental involvement is a critical part of our students receiving a quality education. It is just as important in secondary school as being involved in the early stages of learning. Research shows thatMore >> Plentiful jobs.
Always has been and always will be the mark of a strong economy.
Unemployment is now just under 11% for the state of Alabama, double what it was last year at this time.
In our region,More >> A stolen car was recovered this past week thanks to a call to CrimeStoppers.
Last month a man who had stolen the identity of a woman in Elmore County and who had eluded authorities for three years, wasMore >> Last week, Alabama, Pike County, the City of Troy and Troy University celebrated an economic victory at a time where our state faces 10 percent unemployment. What's more, this economic celebration willMore >> Feedback to our editorial on transparency was not transparent.
Jackie Adkins emailed: "I am a state employee and totally disagree with posting our salaries. Why is what I make any different than myMore >> Personal integrity seems to be in short supply in our world. Transparency in government certainly is as well. It took a further hit when the executive commission on community service grants voted downMore >> For 50 years, The Family Guidance Center has strengthened families in our region through counseling services and numerous programs, including Success by 6, a community-based partnership ensuring all childrenMore >> Curbside recycling ends next week in Montgomery. It was a good program for 20 years, despite the fact that it didn't include glass, less than a third of residents participated and only about a third ofMore >> Congratulations to Brewbaker Technology Magnet High School, selected by the United States Department of Education as a Blue Ribbon school of excellence.
It is one of only four schools in Alabama honoredMore >> Consumers do better when there is choice and competition.
Blue Cross/Blue Shield controls 90% of all insurance policies in Alabama. Its actions are guided by the profit motive.
President Obama's "not-for-profit"More >> You had plenty to say regarding our editorial last week on excluding the public option from health care reform.
Brett emailed: "I completely disagree. A national plan such as that enjoyed by CanadiansMore >> More than half a million Alabamians don't have health insurance - a little more than one out of every ten of us. We have more than a dozen health care providers in our state, although Blue Cross BlueMore >> "If you quit on school, you're not just quitting on yourself, you're quitting on your country."
Those were the words of our President to schoolchildren nationwide.
A new wrinkle to the stay in schoolMore >> Alfa's one thousand employees at the company's Montgomery headquarters deserve a big thank you from our community and so do their corporate leaders.
Both set the bar high for all businesses in our communityMore >> It's a good thing we will be able to get our weeds cut more quickly now in Montgomery.
It's a shame we needed a recent special session of the state legislature to get permission to do it.
Local governmentsMore >> Alabama ranks number one in the nation in an education metric and it is a big one - advanced placement progress. In the first year of a targeted expansion initiative, a group of Alabama high schools increasedMore >> The effort by many to cut Montgomery's spending by nine million dollars is commendable.
The budget process led to tough choices and logical process changes.
Arguably, the government will be run moreMore >> The Substance Abuse Networking Organization has tried to address the drop-out problem for the past 15 years through its CARE outreach program - Community Assistance Revitalization and Education.
SAYNOMore >> To stop losing a third of all high school students in the state each year to drop outs, Congressman Artur Davis advocates taking their driver's licenses.
He also says if elected governor, he would advocateMore >> Some of our parents cautioned us to never get too big for our britches...More >> Public safety servants have jobs that aren't like yours and mine. We ask them to, and they willingly, put themselves in danger to protect you and me. And we all say we appreciate them and what they do.
SevenMore >> In five years all schools nationwide are supposed to be 100% proficient in reading and math - students in grades three through eight and grade 11 must test at grade level.
That's the goal set and trackedMore >> More children grow up in single-parent families in Alabama than all but four states.
In all but three states fourth graders perform better in math.
Juvenile arrests are rising.
Are we looking afterMore >> It will be great for Montgomery to play host to the crown jewel of Alabama High School Athletic Association again.
All Star sports week left us five years ago for Huntsville.
Folks from throughout theMore >> New construction permits totaled 31 last month in Montgomery, up from 23 in May and 15 in April.
The dollar value of the construction was more than 10 million, up from three million in May and less thanMore >> Has your child read more books or seen more movies this summer?
School begins in three weeks and maintaining reading progress during the summer will get the year off to a great start for students.
CheersMore >> Our editorial last week encouraging Alabama and Auburn to schedule in state games with more fan interest than paying big bucks to lesser name out of state teams struck a chord.
Tom DeBray emailed: "ThisMore >> Auburn fans will see Louisiana Tech and Ball State and Furman at Jordan Hare Stadium in September and Furman in November. Alabama fans will see Florida International and North Texas at Bryant Denny StadiumMore >> Special salutes to the City of Saint Jude, celebrating its 75th anniversary this year, and Magic Moments, celebrating its 25th.
Both help children.
The Father Purcell exceptional children's centerMore >> Editorial Abandoned Eyesores 7-9-09
Neighbors say this house on East Delano has been abandoned for 15 years.
Within a few hundred yards of it, houses on Southmont, Wilmington and NormanMore >> Editorial Feedback 7-7-09
You shared our editorial concerns following the school board meeting we aired live on wsfa.com last week when the new superintendent for Montgomery public schools was selected.More >> Why would she want to come here? That is what board members who voted FOR the newly elected Superintendent of Schools for Montgomery County said and what members who voted against her have said. That'sMore >> As a manager of a 55 year old business on Montgomery's west side, it is good to see some focused attention on our area.
The heart of any city is its downtown and Montgomery's well on its way to makingMore >> By: Calvin D. Johnson There is an alarming trend in the public school system. The high school dropout rate in major U.S. cities is nearly 50%. The local dropout rate for Montgomery County public schoolsMore >> You had much to say regarding recent editorials.
Myra Corsino's take on the Montgomery Public Schools Superintendent Search:
"The community was asked for input that was ignored. Everyone screams weMore >> Only 3% of Montgomery County Public schools improved reading skills of first graders in the first half of this past school year, according to performance tests.
That improved to 91% the second half ofMore >> "Hate" is a nasty four letter word but in the course of recent human events, we can't ignore it. The "Climate of Hate" that has cropped up in the last six months must not be passed off. This is the 21stMore >> We applaud what the city of Montgomery is doing now - zero based budgeting.
Start from scratch.
Access your spending needs.
Be accountable for every cent you spend.
The state shouldMore >> When you turn on the "Today in Alabama" newscast Friday morning it will be broadcast in digital only.
Overnight Thursday we will turn off our analog signal.
For the past five years we've been broadcastingMore >> I believe that one of our civic responsibilities is letting our elected officials know what we think about issues on which we cannot vote, but on which they can. A significant opportunity to do this isMore >> When I was a child my parents would sometimes let me sleep on the back dash of our car while traveling at night. People did things like that 50 years ago.
By the time my children came along, 25 yearsMore >> Change with government leadership dominates discussion this year.
More powerful perhaps is change led by the private sector.
Common Ground Montgomery, a local ministry on Mobile Road begun by Brian KellyMore >> Funding prisons isn't appealing to anyone.
It's a necessary cost you put up with to protect law abiding citizens.
Alabama dislikes it so much we fund our prisons at less than half the national average.
WeMore >> You gave mixed feedback on our checkpoints editorial. Jim McNees emailed: "I want more of them especially in the areas where me and my family drive. I request that if the car is not insured, that theMore >> I don't know who said it, but I like this twist on that famous George Bernard Shaw quote. "Those that can, do. Those who believe that others also can, teach." Last week I was reminded again of why IMore >> For the first time ever, an economic impact study of the 750 miles of shoreline on pristine Lake Martin has been conducted with results that reveal significant eye-opening information, which deserve attention.More >> When the legislative session ends Friday, it will be past time for many legislators to say goodbye.
If they don't leave voluntarily, voters should help them along.
To say some new blood is needed wouldMore >> The Internet brings new challenges and chances at stardom today. The woman from Britain's Got Talent has had more than a million hits on YouTube. The 1st runner-up to Miss USA has become better known thanMore >> Editorial Veteran Salute 5-5-09 Prattville Intermediate School students cheered World War II veterans for hours Saturday morning in Washington, D.C. and that was before the veteransMore >> Editorial Checkpoints 4-30-09
Birmingham raised the roof recently when their crime numbers dropped 10%.
We tip our cap to them, but our crime stats in Montgomery are down moreMore >> Last month we encouraged you to sustain the volunteer effort exhibited with the Extreme Home Makeover program to help other homes and neighborhoods in need.
Your feedback was tangible, as seven homesMore >> We all want the state sales tax on groceries removed, including both Democratic and Republican legislators. To do so requires a constitutional amendment voted on by us. It's time we get the chance toMore >> When thousands of people come to Jubilee CityFest next month, they will be treated to a much more vibrant downtown, thanks to the opening of this Alleyway, reminiscent of parts of New Orleans.
NearlyMore >> New allocation checks sent this month to nearly 50 area service organizations supported, in part by the United Way, are less than last month and will be for the next year.
As generous as our area wasMore >> The Sweet Home Alabama Coalition wants to let us vote.
What exactly will we vote for?
If a current bill to expand and regulate electronic gambling in the state house is passed, it won't be a vote yesMore >> Gambling is supposedly illegal in Alabama but the state has been gambling with money paid by 48,000 participants in the prepaid affordable college tuition plan.
The investments made with that money overMore >> It's time to end lawmaker immunity.
Lawmakers should follow the law just like everyone else.
A 190 year old constitutional provision gives Alabama lawmakers immunity from arrest while the legislatureMore >> For years as a native of Montgomery I have seen School Superintendents come and go but they had all been natives of the State or area. For several years now we have "hired from outside" and had both positiveMore >> Soldiers who are serving on combat duty after their enlistment ends will begin receiving bonuses this week.
It's good to see a group actually earning their bonus money and we applaud Congress for passingMore >> We tell our children to do their homework to be prepared for class the next day.
We don't expect them to read the entire textbook right away, but lesson by lesson.
Same for adults - we all attend meetingsMore >> Editorial Inaugural Glow 1-20-09
Hope and optimism cascade through the countryside this week.
Exuberance and excitement over our new president resound most from younger Americans.
They believedMore >> Fifteen years ago, Congress passed legislation designating the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday as a national day of community service.
The Presidential Inaugural Committee is working to encourage participationMore >>