Trusted local news leader for Prescott area communities since 1882
Wed, March 20

<b><I>Our readers speak . . .</b></i>

That safe haven for

children is no more


I am the proud mother of an 8-year-old special needs child and a 6-year-old foster son. On occasion, I have had to send my boys to the YMCA after-school program at Territorial Elementary.

Now I, as well as many other parents in this area working or not, do not have a safe haven for our children to go after school. I have heard many different stories as to why the Chino Valley School District has done away with this program which vary from the cost of renting the room to the YMCA to leaving the room untidy.

As many other parents out there know, the only two day care centers we have in Chino Valley have a waiting list a mile long because of this closure, not to mention that they will accept only children that attend regularly, which is not the case for my boys.

The YMCA accepted children when they needed after-school care and it did not matter if it was twice a month or daily.

My husband and I have nothing but praise for the YMCA staff that cared for our boys. It was comforting to know that they were there for us and gladly cared for my special needs son. We always knew both boys would be safe and well cared for.

Though we truly appreciate that the school accommodated such a program, what are parents to do now? Shouldn't our community leaders and/or school officials step up to the plate and go to bat for children of our community?

Alice Faulkner


Courier failed re:

Heinz-Kerry remark


Your editorial comments about what Teresa Heinz-Kerry said to a reporter in Pittsburgh show how desperate your conservative newspaper is to cast the entire Democratic ticket, including the wives, in a negative way.

After a speech Mrs. Heinz-Kerry was concerned with the spin a reporter was trying to put on her words when he claimed she used the words "un-American activity" when she had actually said "un-American traits."

During the discussion she claimed she never used the word "un-American" or "activity." While she was mistaken in her using the word "un-American" in the speech, she was correct about not using the word "activity."

She also never denied telling the reporter to "shove it" for his attempt to twist her words, especially when she discovered he was an editor from the conservative Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Your over-simplification of what took place misses the gist of what really happened.

By claiming the press is treating her with "kid gloves" for not laying into her as it rightly had VP Cheney for his use of the "f" word is disingenuous to say the least. The two episodes couldn't be more different.

One would think that what the wife of the presumptive Democratic nominee for president says to a reporter in Pittsburgh would not be in the same league as what the current VP says to a senator on the floor of the Senate.

I would say the amount of emphasis placed on these stories has been about right. In your editorial's last line you attempt to compare Cheney's non-denial of using the "f" word with Mrs. Heinz-Kerry's denial of using the word "un-American." She stands corrected on that point but she never denied telling the reporter what she told him as you suggest. Your confusion on this point says a lot about your motives and reporting.

Bill Cramer


District's use of

money is determinant


How I decide to vote on the upcoming school bond election will not depend on whether I have children in school or on the items on the capital needs list. My decision will depend on how the Prescott District has used its capital improvement money over the past several years.

I decided about seven years ago while attending a high school meeting about the leaking roof and garbage cans in the halls collecting rainwater. First, they told parents they had no money available because of a lack of spending by the state. Later in the evening the business manager admitted they already had used the capital improvement money the school receives to repair the buildings in the M&O salary budget.

I am not saying this is still occurring. I just did not agree with how the district used that money seven years ago. If it is still using it for M&O, my vote will be no.

Tommy Johnson



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