Labeling of students a double bind

July 25, 2011 

I am writing you concerning an issue in Special Education that concerns me greatly: labeling students. I believe more information regarding the issue could be published.

I feel that labeling students is a Catch-22: In order to receive special education services a student must be diagnosed with a learning disability, a physical ailment or a behavioral disorder. Without such labels, students cannot receive any sort of accommodations to ensure they receive the best education possible.

My biggest concern is for those children who will not see it as a helpful tool, but rather as a negative that hinders them and holds them back.

Every child learns differently, and some will embrace the special services provided for them and flourish, but others will see it as a negative connotation and give up, fulfilling the negative self-fulfilling prophecy.

Labeling singles students out, and as a result children often become victims of teasing and bullying. Combined with an LD, BD, or handicap, the teasing and bullying can too often lead to low self-esteem, and/or childhood depression.

I believe labels provide many students with special educational services that they could not succeed without. I just wish there were ways around the system, and those students affected negatively could receive help without being singled out.

I believe reading about others’ stories and experiences with labels, and their effect on teachers and students, would impact upcoming educators greatly.

Pamela Wilcox, Columbus

We need to be heard

When Fort Benning officials hosted the 6 June meeting in Richland to inform residents about the plan to take 82,800 acres of Stewart County, the format was utter chaos, with over 200 people in one small room; no one in control; everyone talking at the same time. People soon left after realizing nothing was being accomplished. The “Open House” format served effectively to hold down opposition.

There was consensus that another meeting in a “Town Hall” format was needed and the Army representatives agreed to such a meeting.

After hearing nothing for over a month about another meeting, several letters were written requesting the meeting. We were notified several days ago the Army will now present a “Town Hall” meeting on 26 July at the Stewart County Elementary School at 6 p.m., to last for one hour.

One hour will be totally inadequate for a matter so important to the citizens of Stewart County. We have requested more time, but as of close of business on 22 July still have heard no response. If the Army is designing their meetings to hold down opposition, they are doing a great job. Why won’t the Army allow the citizens of Stewart County to ask legitimate questions and answer them in the light of day? Is there something so secretive about the takeover that they don’t want it adequately and openly discussed in public forum? What have we missed?

Robert Patterson, Richland

Gross injustice

If a man chops his wife, or somebody else’s wife, into little pieces and scatters them far and wide, he may get seven years, with time off for good behavior! Recently a woman chopped off her soon-to-be-divorced husband’s crown jewels and ran them through the disposal. Now they’re talking about her getting life in prison!

This is the same specious reasoning that values the life of a one-day-old zygote (embryo) above the life of a child. Casey Anthony carried her dead child, with duct tape over her mouth, around in the trunk of her car for a month while she enjoyed her new-found freedom by partying the nights away with her new boyfriend. The police were not even notified that the child was missing in all that time. Surely somebody (maybe her grandparents?) noticed that the child had not been seen for a month!

That jury must have been empaneled from a herd of the “zygote people.” Anybody else could have smelled her guilt from two states away!

Judy F. Brouillette, Columbus

Let’s be unifiers

In “Republican Treason” (July 11), the author quotes Mr. Obama “that they (Republicans) do the right thing for the American people” speaking via the media. What he forgot to mention was the administration’s unsuccessful attempt to close down Fox News as a medium of free speech so blatantly exposed recently in the media. Is it to the benefit of the American people to use hollow rhetoric and scare tactics against the senior citizens of our Republic that he “cannot guarantee the Social Security checks will go out” on August 3? Of course he can; he is the president of the United States. It was Senator Schumer (D-NY) who remarked that the Republicans were purposefully sabotaging the deal talks and deliberately causing an American default (Democratic civility at its best).

To call the Republicans “incompetent, radicalized and dysfunctional,” when the present administration owned Congress for two years, is responsible for an unemployment rate of 9.2 percent (actually 16.2 percent), has driven the national debt to $14.4 trillion dollars, has “not” produced a budget in two years, has lied and misrepresented themselves over and over again and is oblivious to the precipice we are hovering over, this, I think may be considered incompetent, radicalized and dysfunctional.

However, this is not the time to be dividers but unifiers for the sake of our Republic and the American people. You decide.

Joseph Liss, Columbus

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