The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, April 18, 2003

Stevenson seeks second term on Board of Selectmen

To the Editor:

I am honored to have been nominated as a candidate for the Carlisle Board of Selectmen. I have greatly enjoyed serving the citizens of Carlisle for the last six years and look forward to another term.

As a Carlisle native, I believe I bring to the board a unique perspective, balancing the needs of small town Carlisle of yore with the inevitability of change. I support excellent schools, preserving the rural character and a sensible tax rate.

The next three years will see the familiar challenges of balancing limited resources with the need to maintain the excellent services our town government offers. We will all have to work hard together to respect each other's needs and opinions in our attempt to meet these goals.

Carlisle was a fabulous place to grow up and remains a great place to live. I look forward to helping shape our future and continuing to raise my family here.

I would like to thank those who have supported me in the past and I humbly ask for your vote in the town election on May 13.

Doug Stevenson
Cross Street

Larson endorses Allison for Selectman

To the Editor:

I am very pleased Tony Allison is a candidate for Selectman. It is refreshing to know Tony; he genuinely cares about Carlisle's present and future.

Tony has served five years on the Finance Committee (chairman twice.) He has a working knowledge of Carlisle's town departments and the schools. Tony has interacted with both elective and appointed officials. Broad experience on the Finance Committee has given him a grasp of how our town government operates; a natural stepping stone for a leadership role in our town.

Tony is the right person at the right time for the town of Carlisle. Please join me and vote for Tony Allison for Selectman on Tuesday, May 13.

Judy R. Larson
Forest Park Drive

The Mantra of Violence

To the Editor:

Violence appears to be today's mantra the world over. It is not clear that this is more so now than at any time in the past. However if we truly want peace in preference to violence, we must look inward and examine why we all find excuses to justify it. For example, we hear that it is the right of everyone to defend himself or herself, which is true. However, this does not preclude the need for making accurate judgements as to who or what is exactly the threat and what is the appropriate course of action. More often than not it is simply easier to put a label on some group so that everyone in the group, be it innocent women, children and men may now be attacked and killed. Closer to home, examples are as follows: I could not help hitting her because she was doing for which she was asking to be hit: or I had to use force or another method of control because she knowingly did without my consent and lied. If we don't choose to learn the variations of this mantra each of us possess and how to deal with it, as well as help others subject to them then I think there is no way to achieve personal, local, national, or international peace. We the Men Against Domestic Abuse and Control welcome your voice at our mutual learning meetings at the Unitarian church every third Thursday of the month at 6:30.

Thomas Dunkers
East Street

In support of today's teachers

To the Editor:

Today's teachers are not the teachers most of us grew up with. Today we demand that teachers be well-educatedand well-trained to teach. We insist that they continue their education to keep up with new information and thinking. We require them to accommodate many learning needs, including those of children who simply wouldn't have been included in regular classrooms when many of us went to school.

We're fond of talking about how vital good teaching is to our future. Yet some still worry that teachers are getting some kind of sweet deal when they make a living wage (one that nonetheless fails to ensure them access to housing in our communities). Some fear they're being shortchanged if teachers teach four classes instead of five, or if there is a limit to the number of students per class.

Perhaps it's hard to see if you've never visited our high school or talked to a teacher about his or her day, but these limits benefit our students. They do not make life cushy for teachers. During those so-called "free" periods, teachers are involved with students, individually or in activities. There is no smoke-filled teachers' lounge. The school day leaves little to no time for evaluating students' work, so most teachers work late and on weekends. Summer is a blessed respite from the pressures, yet some teachers work second jobs during the two (not three) months off, and many pursue professional development.

We get incredibly good value from our schools, as a variety of measures attest.

There is very little slack in the school budgets; further cuts would begin to decimate core services. Although this is a time of true economic straits for some of our neighbors, dismantling the schools is not the solution. I hope we can support our schools, and move on to the larger question of how to fund education in a country that keeps asking more of its students and consequently more of its schools and teachers. The upcoming vote is a critical referendum on our values as a community. I hope we take full advantage of this opportunity and turn out to vote.

Thomas Spencer
Cranberry Hill Lane

More on high school teachers' salaries

To the Editor:

Ongoing letters from Mr. Powers continue to dispute the information the Carlisle Committee for Tax Fairness received from the school administration and published in our Report to the Citizens of Carlisle and Concord on the current CCHS teachers' contract.

While our Report most certainly illustrates the upper end compensation levels of teachers, the data supplied cannot be considered as focusing on "isolated spikes" when 33.8% of the teachers are at the top Step 17 of the salary scale. It should be noted that Step 17 was a new addition to the current contract and out of the 18 school districts in the region, CCHS is the only one with 17 steps across all lanes.

Mr. Powers offers his own compen-sation as a teacher ($87,713) as an example. But the data provided by the administration shows Mr. Powers' compensation as $93,923.87 in 2001 which was his last Jan-Dec pay cycle before his retirement in 2002. That places him among the top 25% of CCHS teachers with the highest earnings in 2001. But in order for the average person to relate to his compensation level, consider that a teacher's compensation covers a period of employment of 185 days, while the average work year in industry is 240 days or 29.7% more days. Therefore, a comparable level in industry would be $121,819.25. Mr. Powers suggests that the teachers contract generates "compensation that is mildly rewarding to teachers." Indeed.

Larry Bearfield, chairman
Carlisle Committee for Tax Fairness

CC Youth Hockey thanks Middlesex School

To the Editor:

The Concord-Carlisle Youth Hockey Organization would like to express its gratitude to Middlesex School for the use of its new ice rink. It was wonderful to be at the new facility and the children loved being there as well as the parents. Without the use of this facility, it would be impossible for us to accommodate our players with practice time and our in-house league. Middlesex's contribution to this organization benefits 250 families in the Concord-Carlisle program and makes ice hockey fun and accessible to over 300 children.

Linda Fabrizio
Publicity Director
Concord-Carlisle Youth Hockey

2003 The Carlisle Mosquito