Your View: Child, family literacy is key to success

Apr. 06, 2014 @ 07:30 PM

In observing the Week of the Young Child, I remind your readers that education is one of the cornerstones of this country. A focus on a lifelong learning continuum is particularly important given rapidly changing technology that impacts knowledge and skills required in a competitive global economy. This important continuum begins in the earliest years from 0 to age 5 when the foundations of communication and early literacy are developed – even before children reach school. Research tells us that children who do not acquire a substantial speaking and listening vocabulary during this time often never catch up to their peers who do and frequently exhibit later reading difficulties. Research in emergent literacy also tells us that parents are the best teachers to get their children ready to learn to read. And, we know that the education level of the parent, especially the mother, is one of the strongest predictors of a child’s success.  Many parents and caregivers need to be taught how to develop critical pre-reading skills so that their child enters school ready to learn.
At Reading Connections, we combine all of these findings to provide family literacy programs, working to improve parents’ literacy so they can in turn read to their children and promote literacy in the home. We see phenomenal results as parents and caregivers begin to fully understand their important role, learn strategies for sharing stories and create a culture of learning in the home. There is no more important focus for all of our community resources than the support and education of our children. We are failing them and the future if we do not succeed in educating every child.
JENNIFER GORE
Greensboro
The writer is executive director of Reading Connections, which is based in Greensboro and has offices in the High Point Neal F. Austin Public Library.

Hurley supports efforts for children
Our public servants are often called on the carpet when citizens disagree with their actions and are rarely thanked for the good they do. I’d like to thank public servants like Rep. Pat Hurley, R-Randolph, for supporting juvenile-delinquency interventions that have reduced by half the number of teens committed to youth development centers since 2008.
At Methodist Home for Children, we serve some of the most vulnerable people in our state and we know that maltreated children are more likely to engage in juvenile delinquency and adult criminal behavior. Rep. Hurley has led positive change for these children by preserving state funds that help pick up the pieces of their lives and make them whole again.
It takes dedicated staff, generous donors, and the support of our state and county leaders to meet this need, especially at a time when budgets are being cut. I am grateful that leaders like Rep. Hurley see the need to provide safe, nurturing homes for all children in North Carolina and to tackle the causes of abuse, neglect and abandonment.
REV. BRUCE E. STANLEY
Raleigh
The writer is president/CEO of Methodist Home for Children.

Obamacare isn’t an efficient plan
Let’s see ... there were 35 million Americans without health insurance and insurance was too expensive, right?
So ... Congress (Democrats only) passes a law requiring everybody to buy insurance. The promise, it would be $2,500 per family less expensive, and you could keep your plan and providers.
Now ... 7.1 million have signed up.
But wait ... 5 million “lost” their plans because they didn’t meet the qualifications. That leaves, about 2 million, right?
And ... maybe a million haven’t paid? Net gain, maybe 1 million?
Plus ... the “expensive” clients who couldn’t get insurance because of pre-existing conditions or who get subsidies have had the most incentive to sign up. (Additional premium increases ahead?)
Oh, one more thing ... the Obamacare advertisements feature people who are being heavily subsidized. I am not opposed to subsidies to those in need. Americans have always been charitable. I am opposed to hiding the fact that subsidies are not only received but paid for – by those paying premiums and taxes. The estimated 10-year cost is $2,000,000,000. Pretty significant?
We now have a system that requires you to buy something whether you want it or not, enforced by fines that increase every year.
The net number of sign-ups is very close to the number of those who lost plans. (Still 35 million uninsured?)
We’re paying higher premiums, increased taxes etc. ($2,500 savings?)
Plans and providers are severely restricted.
If we eventually increase the “insured” population by 10 million (some estimate this to be the maximum number) at a 10-year cost of $2,000,000,000 -— the net cost per additional insured will be $200,000 each. Isn’t there a more effective way to help the uninsured? You could write them all a $10,000 check annually and save half!
One suggestion, don’t let a politician get anywhere near your wallet. You’ll regret it every time!
CHARLES E. BAKER
Trinity

 

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