July 7, 2011
Here's a quiz. Where does the U.S. rank for vehicle emission and mileage standards: A) The most advanced B) Above average C) The most lenient? The shocking answer is C. We could be reducing our dependence on foreign oil by billions of barrels, global warming emissions by millions of tons, and we could be saving American families billions of dollars in fuel costs just by increasing national standards to a level equivalent with China, Europe and...
February 16, 2011
In his State of the Union address, President Barack Obama channeled the spirits of John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan and Henry Ford all rolled into one in his call for America to innovate its way into future economic competitiveness. Among his bold ideas for how the U.S. can meet its upcoming challenges was the diversification of our energy portfolio, and in particular the development of our renewable energy capacity. The onus now falls on Congress to develop an equally bold plan to see that challenge through.
September 14, 2010
U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood last week released the latest statistics on highway deaths and injuries with no small measure of pride. In 2009, the U.S. had its safest year on the roads with the fewest deaths since 1950 and the lowest death rate per miles traveled recorded since motor vehicles were mass produced in this country. Mr. LaHood and others in Washington were quick to credit their own safety initiatives. But they might also have expressed gratitude for the recession: Historically, traffic fatalities decline in period of economic decline (fewer jobs mean less commuting, fewer deliveries, etc.)
August 12, 2010
Brad Herling received a surprisingly warm reaction several years ago when he banned cupcakes and candy during holiday parties in the name of health at Clarksville Elementary School in Howard County. He's being welcomed with equally open arms this school year as he prepares to lead Centennial Lane Elementary School in the same direction. Parents at his new school have been waging their own war on childhood obesity with a campaign to limit the number of sweet and high-fat snacks served during lunch.
April 20, 2010
Maryland's teachers will be giving lessons that require students to dig deeper into their subjects and be more analytical if the state adopts new national standards as expected this spring. A sampling of veteran teachers in the region concludes that the standards, which specify what should be taught from kindergarten to 12th grade, would be an improvement. Never before has the state attempted such a quick and large-scale overhaul of what is taught in every public school classroom.
February 25, 2010
In response to the Sun article "Raise your schools' game, Obama urges governors," (Feb. 22), high performance standards for American students must begin with politicians, school administrators, parents and teachers sharing the same vision and sense of urgency for our country and students. Too often power struggles cloud the true mission of public education, a responsibility to educate all children who enter the public school doors. This includes an increasingly diverse public school population ("Diversity flourishing across region's schools," Feb. 22)