Reader letters, May 26

May 26, 2014

Education deserves broad support

To the editor:

In Dr. Nolte’s education comments in a recent column in The Mountaineer, he noted that the only exceptions for third party solicitations for school funding are the long standing non-profit school support organizations like the Haywood County School Foundation, school sanctioned booster clubs or authorized Parent Teacher Associations.

Referring to Dr. Nolte’s, “We should fund what our children need.  Every child…every child…should have a ‘free and appropriate public education’.

The opportunity to have a good education should not be used to fund exclusionary schools that eliminate ‘undesired’ children by refusing to provide bus transportation, school meals and other public school mainstay service.

These deceptive and exclusionary practices are barriers that many families cannot cross due to their socio-economic status”.

Dr. Nolte continues to say: The money is not following the children and there is certainly not more funding for each child or school.

Since 2008-09, Haywood County Schools have been cut over $5 million or 11.39 percent.  Additional cuts have occurred on the facility side of the budget.

Our school district has suffered state cuts that include the loss of over 130 positions. The state has eliminated class size limits above the third grade. New curricula and tests have been added for every grade level and almost every subject.  State instructional supply funds have been cut by a third.

If we look at another aspect of education, Haywood County ranks 21st in funding in the state.  Other comparisons rank Haywood below Asheville City, Buncombe County and Henderson County.

Our children deserve more than we are providing.  If we are to provide a school that cannot be equaled by a charter school or a neighboring county, our citizens need to provide the funds needed to meet this goal.

The school administration and the board of education must provide this leadership.

They must determine what is needed for this level of excellence, the priority of these needs and the cost of these requirements.  With that in hand, the members of the Board of Education, Haywood County School Foundation, school sanctioned booster clubs and authorized Parent Teacher Associations must band together and go to our organizations, clubs, societies, communities and individuals with these needs for their support.

We can do it.  Let us start.

Doris B. Hammett, MD



Thanks for the help

To the editor:

Saturday, May 10, was a record setting day for the Letter Carrier’s Postal Food Drive in Haywood County.  43,000 pounds of food was picked up and distributed between the Haywood Christian Ministry, Salvation Army, Open Door Ministry, and the Community Kitchen.

Many thanks to each and every letter carrier who participated this year.  The amount of food was so great many carriers had to have multiple pick-ups during their route.

Thank you to the Boy Scouts of America Troop 370 from Long’s Chapel United Methodist Church, the Tuscola A.F.J.R.O.T.C. , the Pisgah N.J.R.O.T.C. , the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints,   Johnny Miller, Gail Smathers, and Diane Rollind from the post office.

Finally, thank you to the residents of Haywood County who every year for the past 22 years have generously taken the time to put food out at their mailboxes to help “Stamp Out Hunger” in Haywood County.

Kevin Murphy



Haywood has given film producers a red carpet welcome

To the editor:

I appreciate everyone’s efforts in their attempt to let all the credit reside in me. This thing that happened with the film crew was about love and community. The web that led them to me and to Haywood is incredibly intricate and inspiring.

I am certain there was not one person that was the catalyst, except for the producer and owner of Catalyst Pictures LLC.

It might be that I turned the light from red, to yellow, to green but without the people of Haywood County there is no way that light would have not gone back to red.

It is the continued reception and good will of the folks in Haywood County that has made this possible.

The best part of the story is the story itself but in it’s entirty.  I believe in community and I believe in the power of YES.

The people of Haywood have gifted the producer and crew a red carpet welcome.  I am thankful to everyone who has taken part in the story. What fun and what beauty it was to experience!

Let us all continue to wish them well as I believe that when this movie is watched by many, it could turn out to be a great commercial for the county that welcomed them.

Jackie Cure


Lest we forget

To the editor:

The words “Lest We Forget” from Rudyard Kipling’s “Recessional” should be in all our minds today.

In this Memorial Day spirit let us not forget “The Good Stuff!”

The Veteran’s Administration as an organization is being vilified unfairly by many just now.

This federal agency has performed with distinction and without calling attention to itself through longer years since its establishment.

Many dedicated people have given themselves to unselfish service and aid to veterans of all our wars.

As a World War II veteran who entered Army service in the year of our Lord, nineteen hundred and forty (1940) and whose last discharge is dated March 29, 1948, I feel I am qualified to testify to the care and true concern of this agency in granting my application for assistance just this week!

The extent of my grant comes as a blessing especially at this moment in time.  I have been disabled and received this award including unexpected retroactive grant, by the Grace of God and the wonderful personnel of the United States Veterans Administration!

I shall NOT forget! May all consider and remember.

Harold Borchert