LETTERS

Oops!

In your July 11 edition of Washington Technology, in Channel News you incorrectly listed the country of the Czech Republic as Czechoslovakia. The Czech Republic and Slovakia haven't been a united country in years. Check your maps.

Amy Hughes

Reliability for Internet Access

I especially enjoyed your coverage of IBM Global Services and Dennie Welsh (WT, June 27).

I continue to read about the Internet providers that abound, but I must tell you that none of them can approach the reliability and performance of the IBM Internet offering. I have tried many of the local offerings and I finally committed to IBM, which I believe to be the "best buy" for business and personal Internet access.

Thanks to your article, I understand better why the IBM service is superior.

Ford C. Greene

Chairman & CEO

EDGE Technology Inc.

Vienna, Va.

Getting a High-Tech Education

I read your article on "Funding Delays Classroom PCs." (WT, May 23) It is quite clear that you just listened to Ms. Linda Roberts from the Department of Education, and she is about as far from the real classroom as anyone can be. The truth that I get from many teachers in the 3rd to 12th grade is that the school "has computers" but they are locked up and only available to the students about one hour a week. Why are they locked up? If they aren't, they will be vandalized.

The problem is that they can't get rid of the troublemakers. If you fail one, you will have him/her back next year acting even worse. To this is added the heat, threats you get from parents and the principal. I know one teacher that went through "hell" [when] she flunked a kid who only came to school 2 days a week and then did no work at all. But he was a minority, and she had late night calls from his church, friends, and the School Board got into the act. What do you think she will do in the future? You're right -- pass everybody and look for another job, not in teaching. Word gets around fast among the teachers. Now everybody has the "pass them no matter what" attitude.

I have friends at various companies who hire "high school graduates" and find they can't read at the 6th grade level. They called the school administration about this and were told if you want them to read at the 6th grade level you have to teach them. This isn't limited to Arizona. You will get the same story in Maryland, Washington and Virginia. There are some good public schools but most of them -- ugh. Is it any wonder that we now have 60 private schools in the state? They are not all in the wealthy districts. Parents have learned that they can do a good job of teaching without a teaching degree. It is more important to be an interested teacher.

I have written a book on the changes called "The End of the Middle Class" but haven't found a publisher. The readers of WT are the Upper Class. Do they have any thought of what the Lower Class will be doing?

Stuart A. Hoenig, P.E., Ph.D.

University of Arizona

Tucson, Ariz.

hoenig@ece.arizona.ed


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