Letters to the Editor

Thanking citizens for backing teachers

I want to thank the citizens of Anne Arundel County for supporting your teachers. This past year has been a very difficult one, made even more so by budget cuts that led to the departure of many valuable educators.


However, we are grateful for the flood of encouraging phone calls and letters from parents, students and members of the community. Providing the best public education for our children remains our greatest priority and we need your continued support to ensure that next year will be productive and successful.

We were able to get the salary steps restored with your help, However, the fight is not over. We want to keep the best and brightest instructors in the classroom and we know you understand the value of retaining highly qualified teachers. Students count on all of us for excellence and we want to continue to provide the quality you've come to expect in Anne Arundel County public schools.


Remember - education is everyone's business.

Sheila Finlayson


The writer is president of the Teachers Association of Anne Arundel County.

Anti-drug program does a poor job

In times of budgetary constraint, it is especially wise to cut funding from the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) program ("Arundel just says no to anti-drug program," June 30). This is because, in spite of widespread misperception, the DARE program has consistently failed to prove effective in reducing the incidence of alcohol and drug consumption. This fact has been recognized by the federal government, which has threatened to withdraw funding for the ineffective program.

But there is good news. The social norms marketing technique has repeatedly been found effective in reducing both the consumption and the abuse of alcohol. Most students incorrectly believe that more of their peers consume and abuse alcohol than is the actual case. Therefore, they tend to conform in order to "fit in." When a credible survey of a student body is conducted and then the surprising results widely promoted, student drinking drops dramatically as students discover the truth. The technique is easy and inexpensive to implement and the effects occur quickly.

There is no justification for using an ineffective program such as DARE when a successful alternative is available. Our young people deserve nothing less.


David J. Hanson, Ph.D.

Chapel Hill, N.C.

Deale resident supports jetty plan

I have been a resident of Deale for 50 years and have owned my own real estate business for over 30 years. I have witnessed property values increase and attribute a lot of that appreciation to the attraction of the Chesapeake Bay.

I am very much in favor of the jetty project. We need access to the Chesapeake! The jetty will improve water quality, create shallow water habitat, decrease dredging and give us the deep water we need to survive. Without deep-water access, the local residents will lose jobs and the character of our neighborhood will be gone. Deale has always been a maritime community dependent on access to the Bay.

The jetty has been studied enough. It makes sense. Stop talking and get started.


George G. Heine Jr.