Proven RecordFinally, voters in Maryland will have a...

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

November 20, 1993

Proven Record

Finally, voters in Maryland will have a choice in next year's gubernatorial election.

My family and I, city residents, are fed up with escalating taxes, bloated government bureaucracy and violent crime. In Helen Bentley, we have a candidate with a proven record on these issues.

As governor, she will hold the line on taxes, create a more efficient government and support the death penalty.

Mrs. Bentley cares about working class Marylanders, and I am glad to see her enter the race.

Patricia B. Latkowsky

Baltimore

Support Gifted

I hope the article "Smartest Children Get Shortchanged" (Nov. 5) opens a lot of eyes and sparks discussions in high places in Maryland.

Why should grouping "gifted and talented" children be so emotional for our school systems? Is it much different from separating athletes from non-athletes? Would you put a student in the band if he could not play an instrument?

The statement "Most classroom teachers make few provisions for these (G&T) students" is misleading. Do these educators really have a choice given a large class of heterogeneously mixed students?

As long as the bright children blend in, behave appropriately, and complete their work, the teacher need not give them any extra attention. She is forced to teach at the level and pace of the slowest children. Our top 5 percent become unmotivated and bored, or academically un-challenged.

Grouping gifted children is also an emotional issue for the parents. Every parent thinks his/her child is gifted and surely, in some way, each may be. But the bell curve has stood the test of time, and most students will academically fall somewhere in the middle.

Labeling children has caused controversy, confusion and hurt feelings. Accepting the reality that 5 percent of children do share common traits and would benefit from being grouped together would be a step in the right direction.

Baltimore School Superintendent Walter Amprey is mistaken for thinking we are "obsessed" with categorizing youngsters. The truth is children are born into a category with either average, above average or below average intelligence and it is up to us to make the most of their potential.

It can only benefit society to not only group children academically, but to spend the time and money on an appropriate curriculum.

Ellen F. Eisenstadt

Owings Mills

No Affiliation

Despite the impression left by your Oct. 31 Sunday Sun article, Neil Solomon has had no affiliation with the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine for the past 14 years.

Mary E. Foy

Baltimore

The writer is assistant dean and registrar of the JHU School of Medicine.

Without Emotions

Is it possible that it is not the violence but our easy acceptance of violence that inures us to its inevitable presence?

Recently, a television news person reported what appeared to me to be a horrifying event -- a child of 10 had knifed three other children. The delivery of the news was without passion. The reporter then reported the sad news about the football franchise with a commentary and with appropriate facial gestures that such news is indeed bad.

For years, we have been learning that bad news about the Orioles is really bad, and news about evil in the community is just an accepted fact.

I would like to see the media industry experiment with emoting with the news with a comment of sadness and a moment or two for us to absorb the enormity of the event we have witnessed through the news.

L It may not make us less violent, but maybe a bit more civil.

Dorothy G. Siegel

Baltimore

Missing the Point

As a breast cancer survivor and co-chair of Baltimore's first Race For The Cure, I wanted to address Leo E. Otterbein's concerns about the race (letter, Nov. 4).

Like many men who worked to organize the race, contribute funds or walked in the One Mile Fun Walk for Everyone, Mr. Otterbein is to be commended for his effort to support our mission.

We are sorry that he did not realize that the 5K portion of the event was for women only. Throughout all of our brochures, posters and publicity, we tried to make that very clear so that no misinterpretation would occur.

Fortunately that effort was almost 100 percent successful, and we couldn't have been more pleased by the enthusiastic participation of men who were cheering spectators, volunteers and One Mile Fun Walkers.

I am sure any man who has shared the experience of breast cancer with a woman can see some parallel between these supportive race roles and those of helping during her illness. For all of these efforts we thank and applaud these men.

Our goals were to generate funds and raise awareness for the battle against breast cancer. While there are incidents of breast cancer in men, the overwhelming majority of victims are women.

Thus, women were, and will continue to be, our primary target. This focus is extremely important.

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