james Patterson

james Patterson 4 days, 4 hours ago on City Council to make final decision on pot shop move Tuesday

Their opinion should matter only if the business has a demonstrable negative impact on the adjacent business and violates zoning laws. A pot shop has no odor, no overt advertising or any other aspect that would impact an adjacent business. Considering it's next to a "family burger business" that lines it's aisles with cases of beer, hard ale, etc and has a full bar in the view of any customer entering, I would call the whole thing a wash and let the pot shop survive (or not) on it's own merits. You know, that capitalism thing.

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james Patterson 4 days, 5 hours ago on City Council to make final decision on pot shop move Tuesday

You are entitled to you opinion and have stated it here to be read by all. I also suspect you voted and stated your opinion there, possibly multiple times. The issue therefore seems to be that your opinion is not being turned into policy as it happens to be in the minority. Isn't America great that one can express a minority opinion and not be persecuted for it? To top it all off, we get to see capitalism at it's best. A whole new industry has been created and the capitalist are having a field day and making enourmous profits. Sounds like a libertarian's dream. That is unless you are part of the new minority in America that feel their will should win out regardless of the majority opinion. Kinda like what's going on in the House of late.

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james Patterson 3 weeks, 4 days ago on Enterprise zone tax credits help free Steamboat's Chief Theater of unwanted pole

Smaller government, more liberty, more freedom, free markets, let the people have a voice, less regulation cries the conservative…..until I don't like what you are doing. Interesting.

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james Patterson 3 weeks, 4 days ago on New CMC fund aims to improve college readiness, offer scholarships

I agree the book topic is irrelevant. Scott, why "force" a student/teacher to find some modern day relevancy in a book simply because it's considered a classic. Why not find a modern book the speaks to the student thus encouraging them to find relevance. Apply this to any subject. Find what makes this skill relevant to the student. Ken, I'm not sure what your exposure is to education in America, but not even most HS in America offer a relevant curriculum to it's non-college bound students. That fact is what kept me in business for 30+ yrs and continues to keep my colleagues going. If you think every (most, some) student in America has the opportunites offered at SBHS you live in a very different world than I do. Those lucky enough to attend SBHS have the best available. (and the results show) They are not the norm. If material presented is so alien to a student that they can't relate, nothing will be learned.
I think I agree with you on the educational system. It is becoming irrelevant to learning. So much is available that is not in a brick building or dictated by school boards that don't have a clue about their students needs and oftentimes, the needs of industry. The specific skills you obtained/needed are becoming obsolete. That being said, today's youth have skills by the time they reach HS that I can't even imagine. The way they think, solve problems and communicate with each other is amazing. It's not how far they have fallen, but how fast they are rising. Our ed methods need to adapt to this, especially for our less fortunate youth.

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james Patterson 3 weeks, 5 days ago on New CMC fund aims to improve college readiness, offer scholarships

Your example of what could substitute for "Catcher…" simply illustrates my point. Not one title that most of today's youth could identify with and/or apply to their life. There are many, many examples of literature that could point out the same life's lessons that would make much more sense to today's youth. Why must "basic education" be something that folks may have related to 50 yrs ago (or more-I sure didn't relate to it, enjoy it, etc and I read Odyssey/Illiad in Latin Nothing sort of torture) Applying the finding of X to the physics of a 500 hp engine(or some such thing) instead of scratches on a piece of paper would make more sense to a lot of todays youth. We don't disagree on what so much as how. There are many ways to achieve "literacy and basic ed". I must say I never met a "blue collar" that told me how much they loved Shakespere or algebra, but I have met many that were grateful for learning how to break down an engine or blue print a building. I had what you call a "basic ed" and by far most of it was a waste of time unless I want to "impress" folks at a cocktail party or win Trivia at the Tap House. Again, the ability to analyze, critique and discuss written, verbal, etc are critical, but you don't get there with a vast number of youth teaching any of the "classics" you mention. If they don't relate to the material, nothing is learned. Grad rates tell us that what we as a society are doing isn't working. What is elitism about your approach is that you see the only way to gain those basic ed skills is through the curriculum you experienced, not what would be in the studen's experience. Altho it obviusly worked for you, it is not working for the majority of America's youth.

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james Patterson 3 weeks, 5 days ago on New CMC fund aims to improve college readiness, offer scholarships

Again, we will have to agree to disagree. Giving import to "Catcher in the Rye" is a very narrow vision of an "education". This is one of the reasons why so many students fail to identfy and participate with their education and feel like they are being force fed instead of being allowed to explore and learn. To all but a relatively small section of our population, "Catcher.." has absolutely no meaning in their life and adds no meaning if they read it. Totally different worlds. There are examples of literature from their world that would include them instead of illustrating how "outside" they really are. Imagine being anything but white, upper middle class, American and reading "Catcher…..". It would be a "what the … this ain't my world" moment.
I've met many, many kids through the years and rarely, if ever, met a lazy one. Alienated, yes. Disillusioned, yes. Hopeless, yes. Wanting to succeed, yes. Wanting an opportunity, yes. Wanting understanding, yes. Fitting into what appears to be your world, not so much. There are many, many Americas. All of them with their beauty and ugliness. All of them America. To define preparation in such a narrow way excludes a major part of our youth. Thanx for the civil discourse. It's appreciated.

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james Patterson 3 weeks, 5 days ago on New CMC fund aims to improve college readiness, offer scholarships

I guess we will have to agree to disagree on that one. No offense intended, but I think that is a very elitest way of looking at what knowledge/skill is important. I agree with needing critical thinking, but there are many ways to achieve that goal other than algebra or classic lit. IMHO it is this elitist attitude that creates an environment that leaves a large number of our youth unprepared. Again, if my car is broke all the college grads, phd's, teachers, etc in the world aren't going to make my world functional. I want an expert mechanic and don't give 2 hoots if he/she ever read the classics or passed freshman algebra. I doubt if the mechanic cares either.

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james Patterson 3 weeks, 5 days ago on New CMC fund aims to improve college readiness, offer scholarships

The issue of preparation for adult life is not the same for all students. If the school says one must be proficient is basic Algebra in order to be "prepared", it's definition of prepared is too narrow. There are different types of "intelligence" and our present system only acknowledges one-academic. A decade or so ago the ACT folks developed an assessment called "work keys". It assessed a persons basic skill level directly to what was required for over 1000 occupations. This was normed with the skills of folks actually in the given occupation. The State was looking at offering it as an alternative track to a HSD at some "lower" perfoming schools. I left the field before the actual implementation so I don't know what happened. I suspect it became a funding issue and the college prep mentality (read- more privileged students) won the battle for money. Now get into the cultural mentallity that there is labor not deserving of a livable wage and it becomes obvious why we have a large percentage unemployed (not willing to do the work for the miserable wage), hiring of illegals, a healthy black market and other adaptations for surviving. Folks will survive and if the institutions in our society don't provide opportunity via an "acceptable" path, they will create one. I agree that it is a disgrace that we are not preparing our youth for adult life, but if we only accept one definition of success (college, wealth, etc) most of them are going to be left out. That is a crime against humanity.

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james Patterson 3 weeks, 5 days ago on New CMC fund aims to improve college readiness, offer scholarships

Only 35% of the jobs in the US require a BA or higher degree. Why then, is the goal to prepare all of our students for college? I met many young students who couldn't read Shakespere or complete a simple equation but could do an expert TIG/MIG weld, frame a house, operate heavy equipment, etc. It seems like we quit honoring the trades, crafts, and labor. This downward shift led to depressed wages for these skills and an educational norm that said "those are the shop kids." Money dried up for voacational education and HS became a college prep or nothing proposition. The world needs varied skilled labor and an appreciation of the ability to do that labor. Ever work a factory line, a fast food kitchen. bush boy? I don't have the skill to be able to do that day after day after day, yet we refer to those positions as unskilled. When my car breaks down I don't want a PHD fixing it, I want one hell of a mechanic. Somewhere along the line we as a culture forgot that any honest labor is worthy of respect, not ridicule. Part of honoring this of labor is to renumerate in a livable wage. Folks say various agencies are "stealing their wealth". Well, if they aren't paying their employees a livable wage, they are stealing thier wealth. No difference.

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