Tuesday August 14, 2018

Always Forward with Education & Reason

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21
Jun
2016

elderly-people-on-computerThe IRS has witnessed a significant increase in email scams using the IRS name to lure people into giving up important personal information.  Sen. Kathleen Vinehout shares information about what the IRS won’t do and how to report a scam.

Written by Kathleen Vinehout, State Senator 31st District   
 
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21
Jun
2016

water_drinkingLUXEMBURG, WI — More than 18 months after local, state and national environmental groups petitioned EPA to take emergency action to provide safe drinking water to Kewaunee County, EPA and Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources will hold a joint public meeting during which DNR’s recommendations will be released, followed by a Q&A session.

The meeting comes on the heels of the most recent round of private drinking water well testing in Kewaunee that revealed continued contamination. DNR’s recommendations are the result of a year of stakeholder meetings that included farmers, agronomists, agency staff, local land and water conservation staff, environmental groups, and Kewaunee citizens. The recommendations will shape the roadmap for state action to resolve the issue of drinking water contamination in the county.

Citizens are being encouraged to attend and bring a written statement to give to DNR and EPA, as well as any questions that they have regarding the problems in Kewaunee County and the proposed solutions.

Written by GBP Staff   
 
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17
Jun
2016

teacherTask Force, a follow-up to last year's panel on rural education, issued a dozen recommendations on state funding for four-year-old kindergarten and early childhood education. Green Bay representative says we must do more to give all school children in Wisconsin an equal opportunity at educational success.


MADISON - On Thursday, the state Assembly’s Task Force on Urban Education, chaired by Rep. Jesse Rodriguez (R - Oak Creek) issued a dozen recommendations, including reviewing state funding for four-year-old kindergarten and other options for early childhood education.

jesse-rodriguezThe task force is a follow-up to Assembly Speaker Robin Vos’ panel on rural education in a previous session of the legislature. Rodriguez and her colleagues focused on the six largest school districts in the state of Wisconsin, about 20 percent of the state’s total student population.

“With limited time and resources, we needed to just look at a few things that we knew we could possibly make a difference,” Rodriguez said.

Rodriguez also felt student mental health was a major area of concern.

“We were able to look at three different areas that we wanted to focus on,” the Milwaukee County Republican said in an interview Thursday. “That was early childhood education, mental health and best practices for truancy and low graduation rates, as well as teacher training, recruitment and retention.”

eric-genrichOn the other hand, Rep. Eric Genrich (D - Green Bay), a member of the task force, felt it's work for this year left some areas for improvement.

“As a member of the Speaker’s Task Force on Urban Education, I valued the opportunity to visit some of the largest urban school districts in the state and discuss the challenges faced by students and educators in these settings," said Genrich. "I appreciate the time and thought that has been devoted to this effort by Chair Rodriguez and my fellow members, but I urge us all to think seriously about what we owe to all school children in Wisconsin: an equal opportunity at educational success. Unfortunately, the recommendations of the Task Force unveiled today fall short of this obligation.”

“As we move closer to the 2017-18 legislative session, I will continue the conversations with parents, educators, school board members, and fellow policymakers in an effort to articulate a vision and agenda for public education that is worthy of the children of this state, including a fair and adequate school funding formula, a commitment to combating child poverty and socioeconomic segregation, and a real investment in universally available early education opportunities,” Genrich concluded.

Written by GBP Staff   
 
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15
Jun
2016

county-demsIs it realistic for people who are truly reflective of the general public to run for governor, the House of Representatives? Doesn't seem so. That’s because nearly all Americans can’t realistically run for major political office. Our country is the poorer for it.


ALTOONA, WI - Representation is the foundation our political system is supposed to be built on. For authentic representation to be possible, it has to be realistic for people who are truly reflective of the general public to run for office.

By this measure, you can see that American democracy is on very thin ice when you consider what’s involved in seeking and holding an office like governor.

Those doing the campaigning in Wisconsin’s last election for governor spent well over $80 million. The popular assumption is that candidates need to have as much money as their opponents — or close to it — to be taken seriously. That thinking is mistaken, but widely accepted. That fact alone leaves nearly everyone on the outside looking in. Only a select few are able to put millions of dollars of their own money into a political campaign. Among the multitudes who can’t, most are unwilling to sell out their beliefs and principles to win over special interests capable of supplying them with the financing to compete.

Not having a personal fortune or a willingness to take out a second mortgage on your soul is not the only characteristic separating those who can run from others like you and me who can’t. Elections for governor are partisan contests, and America has a two-party system. The major parties expect candidates to join their ranks. Most Americans are turned off by both major parties at the moment, and have no interest in joining one. Candidates not only are supposed to be dues-paying party members, they are expected to take the position that their party can do no wrong and the other party can do no right. You and I and most Americans don’t believe that and aren’t comfortable pretending that we do.

Written by Mike McCabe, Blue Jean Nation   
 
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