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Posted on May 22, 2015

Letters to the Editor: May 21

QSD teachers choose to rally, send message after school

Dear Editor,
Educators in many districts across the state have chosen to participate in actions to highlight concerns they have in regard to education legislation in the state of Washington. The Quincy School District teaching staff has chosen to hold an educational rally after school instead of during the day. This will support other districts in the actions they have chosen. Some of the reasons given by the Quincy Education Association membership for taking this action are: a desire for a long overdue Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) to retain, recruit and keep quality educators; concerns about health care benefits; and loss of learning time due to testing. This rally is being held by the Quincy Education Association to send a message from our educators to the Washington State Legislature that they need to follow the law and fully fund education.
The Quincy School District and the Quincy Board of Directors supports the QEA for choosing to express its displeasure with the legislature by staging a rally outside of school hours instead of during the school day. We appreciate the commitment of our Quincy teaching staff and all the hard work they do each and every day to educate our students. The Quincy School District and the QEA have many priorities in common. We want the Legislature to comply with the McCleary decision to fulfill its responsibility to fully fund education in the state of Washington. We also support a long overdue COLA for teachers and commensurate wages for all school employees.
The Quincy Education Association, the Quincy School District and the Quincy Board of Directors urge the community to support our teachers in their rally to send a message to our legislature on needed changes to support students, teachers and all staff to improve achievement for Quincy students. We want our citizens to know that the teachers union and the Quincy School District are working collaboratively to fulfill our responsibility to educate students with the resources we have in the most positive way possible.
Heather Jacobson, QEA President
John Boyd, QSD Superintendent
Quincy School District Board of Directors

Wish the Gay Straight Alliance Club was at QHS in the ‘70s

Dear Editor,
As a Quincy High School alumni lesbian who has had the privilege of being a legal resident of Quincy for 57 years, graduating with high honors in 1976, participating in various school clubs and sports, honorably discharged from the Army as a SSGT/E-6, and still serving America as a civilian, I am glad there is a Gay Straight Alliance Club for the students in my school. Many gays and lesbians and non-gay allies have walked those hallowed halls. I wish the club was there when I attended. Correction – when we attended.
I would like anyone from my entire life to discuss with me my “sexual behavior.” There’s been people most of my life who would “bully” me for my sexual orientation, yet they would tolerate others heterosexual behavior that would be prevalent, including their own “heterosexual behavior.”
I am a lesbian who is also a military veteran, taxpayer, Christian, voter and Quincy school alumnus, and I believe my tax money is being used wisely by the courageous Quincy School Board. When they voted, they weren’t “politicians” – they were doing the right thing.
We must stop leaving students behind and this includes gays, lesbians and their non-gay allies.
Gayle E. Sorlien, Quincy
Kudos to board for approving Gay Straight Alliance Club

Dear Editor,
I commend the Quincy School Board for approving the high school’s request to form a Gay Straight Alliance club. I’m confident our superintendent and school board members are committed to promoting programs that nurture students’ academic, physical and social well-being. Certainly, well-educated students understand the need to respect the dignity of all of their classmates, especially those who are treated unjustly because of their sexual orientation, race, religion, cultural background, etc.
We live in a society in which long-standing beliefs and opinions on these matters are being re-examined. The educational setting of our schools offers teachers, students and parents an important opportunity to learn together about living in God’s always challenging, multi-faceted creation.
Ron Moen, Quincy

Republicans support Initiative 1366 to lower sales tax

Dear Editor,
The Washington State Republican Party at its Spring State Committee meeting, held in Lynnwood last week, voted to endorse Washington State Initiative 1366. Grant County Republican Party Chairman Sid Gregory attended and supports this endorsement.
The “Washington Decrease Sales Tax Measure, Initiative 1366” may appear on the Nov. 3 ballot in the state of Washington as an “Initiative to the People.” If approved by voters, the measure would decrease the sales tax from 6.5 percent to 5.5 percent.
This initiative requires a two-thirds majority of our state Congress to raise taxes by constitutional amendment.
This initiative, that a two-thirds requirement for tax increases or to create new taxes, will accomplish many positive things for the people of Washington. It is critical we get the 2/3-For-Taxes Constitutional Amendment Initiative on the ballot.  Please sign the initiative 1366 if you are asked or see someone with it around town.
Supporters are required to collect at least 246,372 valid signatures by July 2 to land the initiative on the ballot.
Sid Gregory, chairman
Grant County Republican Party