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presstalk 671-TALK


• I just wanted to express my displeasure about the treatment that I received when calling 911 yesterday evening at about 7:30. We were following a suspected drunk driver, and we saw this individual going down Kingston Pike at a high rate of speed and almost hit someone head-on. And after two calls to 911, following this individual down several different roads, nobody apparently saw this as a priority. They took information from the car and said they would get an officer in the area. I have no idea how they’re supposed to find somebody who’s driving down multiple different roads, and obviously drunk driving is not a priority in our community. So, I’m not real happy with that situation.

• To the person that drives down Kingston Pike two or three times weekly and notices the pretty little pink and blue flowers on a building at Campbell Station [Road] and Kingston Pike: I feel very sorry for you, that you can’t enjoy something that’s pretty and happy in this world today. The people that own Dog Days [Canine Playschool] are some of the nicest, most wonderful people I have ever met, and the only people that I would trust to leave my two older dogs with. I’m sorry you can’t live somewhere where everything is all black. Get a life.

• I just went to The Little Clinic in Kroger [Marketplace] there at Brooklawn. Excellent experience, wonderful nurse practitioner, was in and out, got a thorough exam and got the antibiotics I needed. I just wanted to say thank you to Amy, and thank you for providing that service. It beats waiting in line at the doctor’s office and trying to get an appointment and being around all the flu. Thank you very much; it was a wonderful experience, and I’ll do it again.

• I want to give Catholic High School band a big thank-you for performing at the Farragut versus Catholic game. Their energetic music helped the game momentum keep going. I applaud their enthusiasm throughout the game. It was an incredible contrast to the usual funeral procession music. Well done. Thank you band, I appreciate it.

• … [One of the new grocery stores in Farragut] does not have stripes on the pavement from the handicap to the store entrance. Also, they do not have yield or stop signs on the crosswalk from the handicap to the store. I almost got hit twice myself and I’ve seen other people almost hit by fast drivers in SUVs talking on their cell phones. I’m not sure, but I think it’s the law, the law requires you to have lines on the crosswalk area between handicap areas and the store entrance …

• I’m just wondering what the policy is for Farragut employees to be talking on personal cell phones during business hours. On Friday, between 9:40 and 10:10 [a.m.], I was at a Farragut park, and a pick-up labeled “Farragut” pulled up and the two employees in there seemed to be having extended conversations at different times on their cell phones, and I was just wondering what the policy was on that, or if there is a policy. And Farragut, how do you like our employees talking on their phones during business?

• I think it’s ironic that there are parents complaining about delays and so forth around Farragut Primary School because of the construction this year. It seems to me, because I drive through there every single morning on my way to work, it seems to me that there’s actually been less delays and less traffic problems because there is a sheriff’s officer in attendance who is watching the traffic lights. And because of the way the construction is, we don’t have these parents who think their time is the only time that’s precious in the world come tearing through at high rates of speed, who use the turning lane as a passing lane, and ironically seem to never have themselves or their children in seatbelts. So apparently this has forced quite a few of them to do the smart thing, the right thing, to get up 10 to 15 minutes earlier in the morning to get their kids to school on time. Now if we can just get these inconsiderate people who don’t seem to know how to read the “No Parking” signs on Russfield [Drive] and Old Colony [Parkway] and who park there and take their kids to school. We’d really be making some accomplishments.

• This is in response to the lady’s letter to the editor in the farragutpress about the ice cream sold in schools. Come on, lady, the food tastes terrible enough as it is in Knox County schools. The food has no flavor; just let the kids have an ice cream. Just don’t send any money with your kid to school. Our elementary school monitors the kids and they know who the parents tell if they can have ice cream or not. They just know it when the kids punch their numbers in. So let the kids have ice cream. It’s a nice little treat for them; it’s nutritious.

• I’m calling about the flooding issues in Farragut. In your paper on the Sept. 3 issue, this is a picture of Village Green and the flooding issues. It’s going to take more than 30 seconds if you come out to Linda Heights on Corto Lane and check the flooding issues out there.

• I would like to echo the sentiment of the person who called in this week about the drivers, or rather parents, who park in between the “No Parking” signs in Village Green, and who also have been known to block people’s driveways to drop their children off at school. I think this is rude, it is inconsiderate, not to mention it’s against the law. Do these people not realize they are teaching their children to break the law? They are above the law. The more a person pushes and gets by with little things, the more they will get by with big things. … And you know, what is such a big deal about doing the right thing for a right reason? It’s what we’re all taught to do in Sunday School and what we should have been taught at home. I think the [Knox County] Sheriff’s Department needs to start ticketing these people and they need to start doing it now.

• I, too, saw the airplane that was pulling the sign with the photo of the 10-week-old aborted fetus. It was bad enough that I saw it; however, when my son, who is in fourth grade, got off the bus, he proceeded to tell me that he and his friends saw it, not only on the playground, but on the bus and proceeded to ask me numerous, and what I considered very inappropriate, questions. Even more disturbing is that the head of this group, The Center for Bio-Ethical Reform, is the director for CBR Southeast [and] lives in Knoxville. If he’s reading this, I would really appreciate a little more sensitivity as to where these signs are going to be flying.

• Via e-mail: We encountered a coyote in Village Green a couple nights ago as we pulled into our driveway. Our hope is that it will help clear out the cats that kill birds at our bird feeders and the yippy dogs that bark at night.

• Via e-mail: Regarding the article on the No Child Left Behind impact on our high schools. This story leaves a lot of unanswered questions and points for the residents of Knox County to consider. 1. Rezoning — the [Knox County] School Board rezoned to alleviate overcrowding and now says there is room for NCLB students. We traded students who live within five miles for students who live all over the county. Will future transfers cause more rezoning of students from their neighborhood schools? 2. Cost — Has the cost of busing students to these schools out of their zone been determined? Has anyone considered that this is in addition to the County sending out buses to west Farragut neighborhoods (as well I am sure of the other communities around Knox County that got transferred away from their schools) to transfer them all the way to Hardin Valley? Just last year the School Board considered a late start for some high schools to save money, yet they recklessly spend money to bus children away from their neighborhood schools. I would be interested in what this is costing the County. 3. MPC data — The original expectations from the MPC were as predicted, drastically off. How does the MPC reconcile their predictions with reality? What are they doing to better predict future school enrollment? 4. Low performing schools — Why do we accept this disparity in performance and if we continue to allow transfers, what happens to those low performing schools? They will continue to decline without attention and then we have half-empty high schools in some part of the County and over-crowded schools in others. The County will have to continue to support these schools but, will they be viable? Which is exactly one of the arguments of rezoning … to make Hardin Valley viable. It seems in one year, without the small numbers from west Farragut, HVA is quite viable all on its own. I don’t think the community has trust in the School Board’s ability to prepare for the future from predicting projected growth to NCLB future consequences.

Editor’s Note: No Child Left Behind is a federal government mandate and thus Knox County and Knox County Schools have no choice but to comply with transfers.

• Via e-mail: I may have been the individual, or “unfortunate” person identified as a family rezoned to Hardin Valley Academy. My previous written response being only one of two originally printed in regard to a soccer stadium. Allow me to correct the writer to say I have never considered nor conveyed my family to be “unfortunate.” We truly welcomed the rezoning. As a well informed father, what I do find absolutely unfortunate is the number of parents of Hardin Valley Academy students that are unaware that HVA is already overcrowded to levels greater than the schools they were removed from. Up to 40 students per class, teachers giving up their own desks for students to use, lack of textbooks, money and resources. And yet, we have not even fielded a full Senior Class at HVA. What is unfortunate is to be assigned a school within a county school district that promised specific results with HVA and have failed at all levels. HVA is an issue parents need to be aware of and begin pressuring Knox County Schools administrators to correct immediately. How is HVA going to staff and support an entire freshman to senior class population next year? We need answers now, not next year. This is not about the teachers, this is not about the school administration. This is about the ongoing systemic failures of a county school administration.

 

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