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Wednesday, June 18, 2003

By Staff
Downtown development options
To the editor:
To the good people of my hometown: Some time ago I learned that plans had been made to build a center for the arts at Bonita Lakes. While I think this is a great idea, my question is, "Why not tear down the old Lerners building or the old Sears building and put the new center downtown to complement the restoration of the old Opera House in the Marks Rothenberg building?"
I have been so grateful that a daughter of our hometown, Sela Ward, has been willing to help with the Opera House. When I was last home for the reunion of the MHS class of 1949 I was very disappointed that everything new is being built near Bonita Lakes, and on Highway 39 toward Naval Air Station Meridian.
Why? Are there no citizens who are willing to make the downtown what is once was? The old Kress building could be renovated as has been done in my present home city of Greensboro, N.C.
Since Sears moved out near the highway, downtown has been deteriorating for many years; however, the news that new owners of Weidmann's restaurant have totally restored and reopened it was music to my ears. Though I have not lived in Meridian in many years, she is still my hometown and I love her and her people.
I appeal to the city council and other elected officials to get on the ball and make those necessary changes which will make Meridian the beautiful city we all once knew. From one native who is very proud to say he graduated from MHS, with a greeting to all my friends who are still there … and a challenge.
George C. Carpenter
Greensboro, N.C.
Bush on track with new education program
To the editor:
Because of President Bush's No Child Left Behind Act, our schools are already receiving additional resources and historic levels of federal funding to ensure that students succeed, and more positive changes are on the way. Recently, the president announced that every state had put in place an accountability plan to ensure that all schools makes progress.
As part of these plans and the No Child Left Behind Act's strong accountability provisions, school districts will be required to test students and give parents annual report cards. Schools that don't make progress will offer their students additional services, such as free tutoring, and parents will be given new options.
Through these new reforms, we have a real chance to ensure that every child receives a quality education, and President Bush deserves enormous credit for focusing our nation's attention on this challenge.
It is time as parents that we step up to the plate to make sure that our teachers are held accountable for teaching our children. When a child is having trouble in school and needs help from the teacher, it is a problem when the teacher sends the child to another student instead of taking the time to help him. Personally, I don't pay my taxes to have the students teach my children. If this is happening to your child, as it did mine, please let someone on the school board know.
Kathy Dopke
Lauderdale
Will road to NAS Meridian get built?
To the editor:
I wonder if the new road going to the Navy base will ever really get built. The talk of the town is that a board of supervisors candidate is holding up the project by refusing to sell the needed property. Seems he and his family have property next to the proposed road and is holding out for more money.
Mark Benson
Lauderdale

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