Letters

LETTERS

June 11, 2006

Taxpayers funding Baptist Convention

Bill of Rights author James Madison is again turning over in his grave. The Maryland attorney general has sided with his son-in-law in extending the unconstitutional Faith-Based Initiatives of the president in Baltimore. State taxpayers will fund a huge National Baptist Convention to debate separation of church and state issues.

What a blessing it would be if the taxpayer gift was litigated before the Maryland Court of Appeals and U.S. Supreme Court.

Bill D. Burlison Odenton

The writer is the District 4 representative on the Anne Arundel County Council.

Teacher of the Year starts essay contest

Thank you for your recent article on my being named Teacher of the Year for Anne Arundel County. Many people made this possible. The Annapolis and Anne Arundel County Chamber of Commerce and Anne Arundel County Public Schools, in particular, Sherry Yaniga, worked together to plan the process and the awards dinner and ceremony. Crofton Middle School Principal Sharon Hansen nominated me with supporting letters from Tony Kohn, a colleague, and Kelly Kidwell, a former student. My current students lent their supporting voices and faces to film crews that came to school.

Comcast and Anne Arundel County Public Schools donated generous monetary awards. Spirit Hyundai of Annapolis loaned me a new car. T.G.I. Friday gave a dinner certificate. Colleagues, parents, students and friends have sent good wishes that fill a scrapbook -- enough to last a lifetime! I am so grateful to everyone.

Still, I know that all Anne Arundel County Public Schools are filled with fabulous teachers and staff who may not receive this type of recognition. I can only accept this honor symbolically on their behalf. To share the generous gifts I have received, I am starting a "Pass It On" essay contest to recognize important lessons learned by high school students in middle school that will highlight my peers' good work and "pass on" their wisdom.

To recent high school graduates, I invite you to consider teaching. You will have an enormous positive impact on our world. To career changers, I invite you to consider teaching, also. I guess I am proof that a person can become a teacher in mid-life -- in fact, I would highly recommend it!

Susan A. Casler Crofton

The writer is a language arts teacher at Crofton Middle School.

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