The announcement last week by Northrop Grumman Corp. (Grumman to those of us who have been on this Island awhile) that it will transfer 850 jobs from its Bethpage facility to Florida and California should come as no shock.
The company, once Long Island’s largest and best-known employer, has been sending jobs South for more than two decades. At one point, the in the 1980s, the company employed 25,000 people on the Island, built the Navy’s premier fighter, the F-14 Tomcat, and, in the 1960s, built the Lunar Lander that took Apollo astronauts to the moon.
When Saul of Tarsus set out on his fateful journey to Damascus the whole world lay in bondage. There was one state; it was Rome. There was one ruler; it was Tiberius Caesar. Despotism was the rule and every human life was insignificant when compared to the glory of Rome. It was, or so it was believed, an empire that transcended the ages. Yet at its very summit a nascent, nearly invisible movement was fermenting from within; a movement propelled by only a few bedraggled fishermen. From this infinitesimal nucleus, without the benefit of even the most rudimentary mass communication, these followers would increase to 30 million in less than 300 years. The church that sprang from a tiny, persecuted band of believers would vastly outdistance the reigns of all the emperors, change human history in unprecedented dimensions and remain, two millennia later, the world’s most significant, internationally recognized moral authority.
The challenge of the Common Core Learning Standards continues to involve “unfunded mandates,” and yet due to the outstanding instructional leadership demonstrated by our administrators and their ability to professionally develop their staff, we continue to keep making inroads on helping our students excel with the diminishing resources we have. Currently each building principal has worked closely with each library media specialist to make sure the non-fiction library is strong and correlated to the students’ abilities and topics across the content areas.
I’m writing this on Feb. 22, George Washington’s birthday, so I have no idea if automatic spending cuts (sequestration) will go into effect on March 1. Well, happy birthday George, though I’m sure the Father of our Country would loathe acknowledging paternity for the reckless manner in which his Republic spends taxpayer dollars. Taxation was, after all, the clarion call that gave birth to his country and it was indeed Washington’s vice president, John Adams, who observed that there are two ways to conquer and enslave a nation. One is by the sword …The other is by debt.
I am currently a senior at New Hyde Park Memorial. The title of my Girl Scout Gold Award project was “Lets Include Instead of Exclude.” The project consisted of different seminars for children from preschool through junior high school with food allergies and other restrictions. I chose to do this for my Girl Scout Gold Award project because I felt I had a lot of knowledge to share on this topic. I grew up with many allergies during my childhood and continue to deal with them.
In President Obama’s “State of the Union Address” he mentioned jobs 47 times. Recently, we’ve heard Governor Cuomo harping about jobs for the Empire State. But if it’s all about jobs, why endorse the raising of the minimum wage, which has resulted in more than a half century of ignominious discreditation. This measure is often greeted with the sound of trumpets; I would much prefer to write a dirge, for the minimum wage is a job destroyer not a job creator.
The minimum wage is a classic example of the indissoluble bond between pet prejudices and public policy; a bias that has become intolerably wearisome. Mandarins duped by the sophistry that because a rose smells better than a cabbage it would also make a better soup. Such moral asseverations are the sanctum sanctorum of the political and cultural dilettantti; a creedal hosanna to give obeisance to that which they know next to nothing about. The minimum wage law is one of those secular, holy doctrines where emotions overrule facts and sound bites supplant understanding.
At the February work session, Mary Harrison, director of guidance, presented information and data on the college admission process at Wheatley. There was discussion regarding recent changes in college admissions and the processes used to assist students in their pursuit of college admittance. The district’s successes in supporting students’ placements in colleges of their choice, as well as important reflection on ways to continue to grow these efforts, were shared.
Moving forward, the District is planning to offer two new courses in the 2013-14 school year. The introduction of a Junior Seminar and Senior Seminar will offer enrolled students an SAT/ACT Prep curriculum while counselors provide targeted assistance on issues related to the college admissions process.
In addition, a workshop is scheduled for high school administrators and staff with an admissions representative from a top-tier school. The admissions rep will share an insider’s view of the college admission process, including maximizing the powerful role of teacher recommendation letters in the college admissions process.
We’re hitting them in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Yemen and wherever else we find those committed to waging war on the United States. President Obama has escalated the use of un-manned drones equipped with Hellfire missiles to take out suspected terrorists wherever Jihad is being harvested, even if the targets include American citizens. This is a policy, with a few pertinent reservations, I generally endorse.
I endorse it because any American who takes up arms against his country forfeits his rights of citizenship. I endorse it because the United States is at war with a shadowy enemy taking refuge in lawless territories and hell-bent on mass murdering as many Americans as possible. I endorse it because it has been effective in destabilizing the leadership of Al Qaeda. I endorse it because collateral damage from these high-tech strikes is limited and does not expose American pilots to enemy gunfire.
As Rome and Athens demonstrated two millennia ago, every military, no matter how strong its eternal code, eventually mirrors its society. So women in combat units, in the trenches and on the battlefields should not be all that surprising, which is not to say that it’s a good idea.
In fact, it’s a terrible idea, one that will adversely affect the efficiency, readiness and performance of our armed forces. Most women do not possess the physical strength of the average man; nature, not the male species, has designed it that way. Thresholds that determine combat readiness will not be compromised the military assures us, as if such an unprejudiced expostulation of fairness and human equality would be enough to console the doubters. Well, count me out.
How does, what looks like such an easy task, turn into choreographing the most intricate dance in history? Welcome to the New York State education district budget development process. Just when we have it down to a science, we get thrown additional curve balls or our lead dancer breaks a toe.
The New Hyde Park-Garden City Park School District has worked closely with the community over the past five years to have a budget process that takes community input regarding the quality of educational program offerings and balances the dance moves with fiscal responsibility to our taxpayers.
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