The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

The Rave

October 21, 2013

Today's Rave: Cheers and Jeers

Cheers: To new assistant principal Brandy Wiest, who began a program at Shikellamy High in which students receive tickets for being caught being good. Wiest, who last year worked in the Upper Dauphin Area School District, distributed more than 6,000 tickets to teachers and instructed them to keep a close eye on students who are helping other stu­dents, participating in class or just being good in general. “Everyone deserves to be told they are doing a good job,” she said. “This is a way to get students more involved and to show our appreciation for what these kids are doing.” About 188 students received tickets in a recent week. Students leave their tickets in the principal’s office and, if the ticket is drawn from a basket, the pupil receives pizza or fake money to use at the student store.

Cheers: To Sunbury Mayor David Persing, who last week announced the city may take over and eradicate another 10 blighted properties. Persing, who began the project in June 2011, had city solicitor Michael Ap­felbaum write to the property owners and give them 10 days to clean the proper­ties or the city would go to Northumberland County Court to acquire the prop­erties. Since June 2011, the city has since razed four properties and has acquired and sold five homes.

Cheers: To Snyder County Commissioner Joe Kantz for nothing to do with his elected public service. A few weeks ago as the downtown Selinsgrove festival was packed with visitors and vendors restocking the community’s nonprofit organizations and showing arts and crafts, there was a country singer in the True Heart Quartet, belting out the “woefuls” better than Randy Travis or Travis Tritt or Travis Travis. Turns out it was Travis Kantz, or Commissioner Joe Kantz as you know him. The man has pipes. In its way, that was something of a public service, too.

Cheers: To state Rep. Rep. Brad Roae, a Crawford County Republican, who is pitching a plan that would include requiring pro­fessors within the State System of Higher Education to increase the hours they spend teaching from 12 to 15 and eliminate paid sabbaticals as a means to offset dwindling enrollment, and staff cuts as a result of less state funding for higher education. “Rather than paying overtime like they do now to professors who teach 15 hours a week rather than 12, consider it the new regu­lar course load,” Roae says. “High school teachers teach about 30 hours a week in the classroom, so I am confident professors can handle 15.”

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