Friday, November 21, 2003
CCHS Principal clarifies data on teacher salaries
To the Editor:
First the disclaimer; I am not part of the teacher-School Committee negotiation process. Other than my hope that both parties will come to an agreement in a timely way, I have no vested interest in the details of the agreement reached. My job is to maximize the educational opportunities of all students within the parameters of the resources provided and in keeping with all contractual agreements.
The reason I write this is to clarify some misinformation that was recently printed (Nov. 7, 2003, Average Teacher Pay at CCHS.) Several statements therein caused me to pause. A mention was made of 56 full-time teachers. There were actually more than 90 professional staff working full time. I do not know the average pay, but I do know that the figure quoted in the Mosquito of $74,850 is significantly more than the average pay for teaching. That figure includes coaching salaries, activity advisor stipends, summer curriculum work, and alternative to sabbatical summer work. All of these are earned either outside the school day or outside the school year. The $74K figure also would include such things as longevity stipends and department chair stipends, which are earned during the school day or the school year. It was accurate to mention that the highest pay of any individual teacher was $111,305. This is an excellent example of my previous comment. This teacher holds a doctorate degree and has worked at CCHS for decades, coaches three athletic teams, advises two groups that meet in the evening, is a department chair, and worked on two separate curriculum projects during the summer. However, the minimum salary was misquoted. By my count, there were more than a dozen full-time professional staff who earned less than the $46,377 cited in the article as the lowest earnings of any teacher. Some of them also received stipends for work done outside the school day or school year. One last detail, at CCHS we have class periods of 57 minutes, 56 minutes and 45 minutes. The average class meeting time is 51.4 minutes, not the 45 minutes cited in the article.
I think it is reasonable and appropriate for the citizens of Concord and Carlisle to debate the cost/benefit of the education provided to the students. I also think the more accurate the information the healthier the debate.
Carlisle residents apologize to the UN
To The Editor:
November 12, 2003 marked the fifth anniversary of the US having signed but not ratified the Kyoto treaty on greenhouse gas emissions - a set of controls aimed at slowing the acceleration of global warming. Also on November 12 an interfaith group devoted to public witness favoring policies that will help reduce global warming held a somber and dignified "Service of Contrition and Repentance" before the United Nations in New York.
Four people from Carlisle traveled on a one day round trip bus trip to NY in order to participate in this event. The event was preceded by a colorful procession to the UN over 10 - 15 blocks by about 150 - 200 participants, many of whom were clergy of all faiths and rabbis in their vestments. The procession included four Buddhist monks who had walked from western Mass in thirteen days to show solidarity with the aim of the Service of Repentance. The aim of the service was to apologize to the world community for the United States' position on the Kyoto accords. The four Carlisle participants were Rev. Tim Jensen, Bob Luoma, Tom Dunkers, and myself.
Asking the world's forgiveness for the United States' failure to address climate change, worship leaders pledged to mobilize faith communities to protect the environment. "Every religious tradition forbids theft, but global warming steals from our own children and grandchildren ", said Rev. Fred Small, minister to the First Church, Unitarian, in Littleton, and Co-chair of Religious Witness for the Earth, which sponsored the event.
The service was followed by participants splitting up for prearranged visits to the delegations of 15 countries. For some countries, like low lying Tuvalu, Bangladesh, and the Maldives Islands, the visits were for the purpose of expressing our sorrow over US inaction on Kyoto. For the US delegation the purpose was to hear a justification. The answer was "We are committed to economic growth", and by implication — not to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Writer describes guidelines created in 2000 for fox hunting at the state park
To The Editor:
I am writing to inform your readers of an incident that took place at Great Brook on August 3, 2000.
I was eight-months pregnant and walking with my three- and five-year-old girls, my ten-month old collie pup, my neighbor, her child and dog. As we were walking on the Pine Point Loop Trail we heard hounds approaching behind us. My dog was on leash and we stepped off the trail to get out of the hounds' way. A large pack of hounds started to pass us when three - four hounds charged us.Three hounds jumped on my dog and had their mouths and bodies on him. He yelped several times. The hounds jumped on my three-year-old, scaring her. My daughters were crying and frightened. During the incident there were no responsible parties present from Old North Bridge Hounds. They rode by after the attack and were informed. I had yet to examine my dog for injuries. He was covered with saliva. We immediately went home where, upon examining my dog, I found his underbelly scratched, red and swollen with a gaping hole, several inches long. I brought him to his vet where his wound was surgically stapled. I called the Carlisle police, the Carlisle dog officer and the Park Management. My bills were paid by the hound club and an agreement was made, [see box at right], with the park and the club.
After reading the article in The Boston Globe I am appalled. My dog was on leash and submissive, (he rolled belly up) when attacked. According to the agreement with the state park and the hound club, designed to prevent this from happening again, the hunters and hounds should not have been hunting from May through September. I believe the most recent attack happened on September 9th. They agreed not to hunt on Pine Point Loop, where the most recent attacks occurred. They were to put warning signs up when they were legally doing their hunt, which, apparently, they did not. The attacks give me grave concern about their ability to keep their hounds under control. It takes too long for their trainers to regain control of their pack. They clearly have some very aggressive dogs and are giving them the time to inflict significant injuries.
Evans Avenue, Bedford
Fox hunting guidelines at Great Brook Farm State Park
On August 4, 2000, Park Supervisor Ray Faucher wrote to Mim Neville, Master of the Hunt for the Old North Bridge Hounds hunt club, outlining new guildelines on fox hound training and exercise (T&E). He stated:
• T&E will continue to occur on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
• To minimize possible interaction with the public T&E will happen between 9 and 11 a.m.
• The Pine Point Loop trail will not be used.
• For maintaining maximum control of the hounds there will be no less than five people involved with the exercise program.
• During the T&E time there will a sign mounted on a portable post (to be provided by ONBH) that will announce to the public that there is a training/exercise program for hounds going on in the park from 9 to 11 a.m.
• It is agreed by the ONBH that if any dog or person is injured during one of these T&E programs the ONBH will be responsible for payments of doctor and or vet bills.
• The ONBH will not use the park's trails during the summer season, May to September.
• When the park trails are used they will be limited to those trails that are behind the kennel with a sign located at the intersection of the Woodchuck trail and the trail that leads to the kennel that announces, "Be Aware, Hounds in Training."
© 2003 The