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Issue Home February 3, 2004 Site Home

Letters to the Editor Policy

An Unofficial Call?

Yesterday, I received an unofficial call to tell me that the Susquehanna Community School has been awarded a grant to start a four-year old kindergarten program. That same day, notes were sent home in each child’s book bag, to the entire community to inform them of this future endeavor. We all were "privileged" to this announcement at the same time.

After more than 22 years of teaching preschool to our community’s children, my "pink slip" was not delivered in person, but phoned in to me, by at least one concerned and caring person. I do not begrudge the obvious benefits this wonderful program should bring to our children, but the manner in which I was told is a sad and inexcusable way to treat someone who has given the best part of her life to the community’s preschool children. My job is not a job, but a love and a passion that I look forward to every day that I enter my little red schoolhouse. Many of the people of this area have sent their children to me to nurture, teach and mold into little people with manners, discipline, a willingness to work hard and an enthusiasm for life, which will be carried over into their next phase of learning in the public schools.

I am saddened beyond words. My heart is broken by the thought that I mattered so little to those who benefited from my efforts, yet did not care enough to inform me in a timely and professional manner. They certainly have been aware, for some time what a potentially huge impact this program would have on my life’s work, when they sought the grant. That is a slap that I’ll have to accept and move on from. I know that I would never expect "progress" to stand still, especially for such a beneficial program. I did, however, wish that at least one person from the school administration would have shown me the courtesy to call me in and explain how the grant would affect me and my business.

Teaching children is my life’s work. I chose to build my own school and business to bring that crucial need to our community. In doing so, I gave up a big teacher’s salary, job security, benefits and a retirement plan. I see now that some would say this was a big mistake. In my sadness, I can acknowledge that maybe it was, but in my heart I know that I did make a difference. I know that my efforts were appreciated by the children, if not by the adult leaders of Susquehanna. That will have to be enough, and now that I think about it, it definitely is.

I am not ready to retire and know that I have a lot more to give to the children of this community. Therefore, at the end of this school year, I will be changing Creative Play Preschool to a state certified, licensed, daycare center/preschool. I truly hope that this new program will still benefit the community, give me my cherished time with your sweet children and also compliment the new kindergarten program.

Well, now that I think about it, at least I can say, sometimes change is good for us all!


Norma Chacona

Susquehanna, PA

With A Sick Feeling

Day after freezing day as I travel to work on Meshoppen Creek Road, I see a big white house with an American flag hanging in the front. I watch the plumes of smoke rising from the chimney and think what a cozy, warm scene it is. My eyes then wander to the field on the side where two dogs are tied and then to one of the pine trees in the front where a black lab pup is tied, all with no shelter from the wind, snow and cold. Hours later on my way home from work, I can make out the form of the pup huddled against the tree in a feeble attempt to stop the snow and wind from battering it.

With a sick feeling in my stomach, I wonder how pets can be left outside in this inhumane way and after weeks of seeing this, I decide to contact the Humane Society. A week goes by... another week... same scene. I wonder if these people have ever thought how they would feel if they were tied outside for hours with no food, water or shelter in the frigid temperatures we've had the last month.

I understand that some people decide to have "outside" pets but in the same respect if that is their decision, adequate shelter, food and water should be provided for animals who depend on us to take proper care of them.


Name Withheld

On Request

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Letters To The Editor MUST BE SIGNED. They MUST INCLUDE a phone number for "daytime" contact. Letters MUST BE CONFIRMED VERBALLY with the author, before printing. At that time you may request to withhold your name. Letters should be as concise as possible, to keep both ReaderÔs and Editor's interest alike. Your opinions are important to us, but you must follow these guidelines to help assure their publishing.

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