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Letters to the Editor March 4

Technology leads way to students’ future

I am the librarian of Hanford Dole Elementary School and married to an engineer. I’m not sure when he comprehended that speed multiplied by time equals distance, but maybe not in second grade and certainly not with as much enjoyment as the students at Hanford Dole.

Using her iPad, hooked up to the Promethian Board with Apple TV, our technology facilitator, Tina Rutledge, has used an app called Tynker to demonstrate the use of Blocky in coding a small robot called Sphero that travels over a certain distance without falling off the track. We have been doing this during second- and third-grade library time. Next the students will code the robots to follow paths.

Fourth- and fifth-graders have also been programing the Sphero robots, working in small groups. One student iPad has the app, and another has a data sheet. Another student has a tape measure. Using speed and time, they send the Sphero across the floor and measure the distance it travels; that information is entered in the electronic data sheet and analyzed.

When educators examine the implementation of technology, we hope to see iPads and AirBooks used for more than substitute worksheets. The lessons we are implementing, rise to the level of transformation, enabling students to achieve higher levels of thinking and learning. The technology that RSS provides has allowed us to significantly redesign learning tasks and even create new tasks that students have never learned from before.

By the time my students are in high school, all jobs will require technology, and the thinking skills that technology teaches. Warehouses will be automated, as will the trucks that deliver goods. There will be no jobs for unskilled laborers.

It is a privilege to work in a district that gives kids the hope that they can be well employed.

  Suzanne Crockett, Salisbury

Officers need a raise

City Council needs to immediately raise the pay of Salisbury police at least $15,000 per year if we have any chance to bring the department back to full staffing to slow the rise of crime spilling over into all parts of Salisbury.

This is the only solution as officers face life-threatening duty every week.

This would entice outside quailed officers to apply to our city and would work to slow the departure of officers that is occurring. It would make the Salisbury force the best paid in the area. This would allow the chief to be selective in hiring and raise the standards for the department.

It would show our police that the city appreciates them and morale should dramatically improve.

Salisbury’s reputation is suffering and getting worse. It hurts local businesses and helps depress property values.

I really don’t see any other solution. I also haven’t seen any solutions to the department being short staffed from council that will work without a substantial pay increase.

To do nothing is totally irresponsible.

— J.R. Montgomery, Salisbury

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