Letters to the Editor

Letters: Exciting time for child care in Durham County

Exciting time for preschool

I recently attended the first Durham Pre-K Governance Committee Meeting. It is exciting to see Durham make this investment and commitment.

Linda Chappel, who has led the Durham County Pre-K Task Force as well as the Durham County Preschool Supply and Demand Study, and who is leading this new grant for Child Care Services Association (CCSA) with Alex Livas-Dlott, our Durham Pre-K Manager, walked us through the project.

Durham County has committed to expanding access to high-quality, publicly supported preschool with three main goals: improve classroom instruction, support family engagement, and build capacity for high quality.

The Whitted School is the first Durham Pre-K site. It provides a high-quality program to 4-year-olds with priority given to children living in six different elementary zones, and Durham County has invested $1.5 million to make this happen. This new grant will continue to build on this investment and do so to make Pre-K for 4-year-olds universal in the long run.

CCSA, Durham’s Partnership for Children, Durham Head Start and Durham Public Schools are working together to have one Durham program. The Center for Child and Family Policy at Duke University is leading the important data-collection process and is also on the governance committee. Additionally, CCSA is working closely with Drew Cummings as our liaison with Durham County.

This meeting included important discussion on income eligibility and sliding-scale fee, tiered reimbursement, provider requirements and policies and Pre-K teacher salaries in community-based programs. There really was significant discussion on each item that would take more space than I have here right now. It was an exciting and spirited discussion. I look forward to watching it grow!

Kudos to Durham County for the vision and commitment to this community by investing in our young children.

Marsha Basloe

The writer is the president of the Child Care Services Association.

Silent Sam – ‘Let’s Make a Deal’

The chancellor and Board of Trustees have put a bid on the table to keep Silent Sam on campus at the mere cost of $5.3 million plus annual maintenance.

And the concerned students and faculty have started protesting again. They should consider the real, “art of the deal.” How about this from the protesters? We will stop protesting and allow the statue back on campus (with appropriate physical protection and added historical context regarding slavery/civil rights, etc.) if you take the rest of the $5.3 million-plus and dedicate it to scholarships for poor students and some additional chaired faculty/money for African-American studies?

Can commonsense compromise exist in our polarized angry times? We can only pray…

Lester Levine

Chapel Hill

Playing political favorites

Regarding the news story “As hate crimes rise, some look to an impeached NC governor for lessons” (Nov. 24)

This article is an example of either McClatchy newspaper incompetence or insidious media political favoritism. The title of this article should read: As Democrat-inspired hate crimes rise, some look to ex-Republican NC governor.

I confirmed my concern about this Civil War misinformation in two minutes with an internet search. Since I believe neither the writer nor his supervisor are stupid, I conclude this is a typical Democrat-controlled media attempt to make, through inference, the uninformed believe Republicans are haters, racists, etc.

What’s missing in this article?

The governor being praised by the local historian, Eddie Davis, was a Republican. The Republican Party was against slavery, and the Democratic Party — the party that impeached Holden — supported slavery. The writer mentions the term “conservative” many times apparently to make the uninformed think that today’s conservatives — Republicans — were the “conservatives” during the Civil War. The writer doesn’t mention the fact that Civil War “conservatives” were pro-slavery Democrats. William Powell, whom the writer states initiated impeachment against Holden, was a Democrat.

Finally, a large percentage of, if not all, members of the KKK were Democrats. No Republicans, or a miniscule number, were members of the KKK. This same corrupt misinformation applies to the role of Democrats and Republicans during civil rights days. The vast majority of true hate crimes are not committed by Republicans. The rise of threats and criminal activity by Democrats against President Trump and his supporters are recent examples of hate our biased media sources conceal.

Robert Medred


Blue Hill design debate

Our recent news story “Chapel Hill gets 1st ‘true mixed use’ project in Blue Hill redevelopment district” generated this exchange on www.heraldsun.com.

Julie McClintock: This is not an attractive design. The Form Based Code that replaced zoning for “Blue Hill” was supposed to give us development that the community wants. A hotel and more apartments don’t fill the bill. A good old fashion public hearing would have brought in public comment that surely would made something more beautiful than this. The only citizen advisory board, the Community Design Commisson, tried but failed to make this something we could love.

Susana Dancy: I am on the Community Design Commission, and I voted for this project. I believe it is the best thing yet to come out of the Ephesus Fordham (Blue Hill) form-based district. It is not perfect by any means, but I believe it is better than any other project that has come from this district, and it is better than something that traditional zoning or the special use permit process might produce. There’s a hotel, an apartment building and an office building. It will generate positive tax revenue for the town, and it is in an appropriate location for this level of intensity. Again, it is not perfect, but it is a strong addition to this area. This project moves us toward the goal of expanding the commercial tax base in Chapel Hill.

Where healing begins

Suppose we could begin to erase many of the leading causes of death like alcoholism, COPD, illicit drug use, heart disease, smoking, cancer, stroke, or diabetes?

Suppose we could improve health outcomes with a single question? What happened to you?

Adverse childhood experiences harm children’s developing brains, damaging their immune systems so profoundly that the effects show up decades later. These experiences include physical, sexual and verbal abuse; physical and emotional neglect; having a family member who is depressed or diagnosed with other mental illness, addicted to alcohol or another substance, or in prison; having a mother being abused; and losing a parent to separation, divorce or another reason.

Healing can begin when you have at least one person who loves you unconditionally and with extreme emotional extravagance. Who is your “one” that will be by your side when everyone else jumps ship? Reach out to them and let them know.

Also, have confidence in your strengths and abilities, manage strong feelings and impulses, meet the demands of daily living, while also relaxing and re-energizing and trust yourself to make good decisions to maintain a healthy, positive lifestyle.

Achieving Health Hand in Hand (AHHH!) is Together for Resilient Youth’s initiative creating strategies to form a resilient community one person at a time in partnership with the Duke Clinical & Translational Science Institute and the North Carolina Behavioral Health Equity Initiative. Learn more at together4resilientyouth.org or wanda.durhamtry@gmail.com

Wanda Boone


Letters policy

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