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Newton Citizen Poll for April 27, 2014

The Newton Poll is a weekly compilation of reader comments on subjects of local interest.

“To all of the elected officials and running candidates: What can be done about the four-way in Porterdale? The cops are getting paid to sit in the Chevron gas station and ticket everyone that cuts through. This is getting ridiculous. Let me know what to do. I started taking pictures and I’m going to contact the news for them to come and look at this mess.”

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“Wow, the article on JC Henderson tells me all I need to know about Newton County. Pretty soon we will all have to move from Newton a.k.a. DeKalb East.”

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“I do get the community is tired of complaints on the schools, but our central office is one clique of three people and I would say are tyrants and won’t last long. Fuhrey is not the right leader and the whole Eclan David mess is one example. Let’s see, the board member’s relative hired at NCCA and suddenly the best counselor in Newton is leaving. Teachers have no voice and the Citizen Poll thankfully provides a forum. The deeper you dig, the more done-dirt-cheap people you find getting the heck out of these schools, and yes, I am typing this from my classroom. Oh, mighty Sam-I-am, if you can tweet, I can type.”

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“Yeah so how is having a nearly 20-year veteran on the school board? Our high schools just averaged an F. So embarrassing.”

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“Now that we seem to have a good principal at Newton High maybe we won’t have another Roderick Sams or Eclan David, both of who left in the middle of the year, the first in 2010 the next in 2014. Sure is suspicious no one told us why either time. Don’t renew Fuhrey’s contract till she explains.”

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“How in the world did our Newton County commissioners get to the point of their current dysfunction? We have commissioners that think their primary function is to develop and fund recreation and social programs such as community centers and after-school programs. Does anyone in their right minds think George Washington, Thomas Jefferson or Ben Franklin founded our republic based government to promote recreation and social programs?”

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“Meadors warns his readers that PR machines are in full spin mode. I tip my hat to him, at least, for placing that disclaimer at the beginning of his column this week, as what follows it is just more of the same old ad nauseam bash-the-schools that-he’s-a-part-of-at-any-cost routine he’s seemed to make his life’s work. Luckily for him, there must not have been any lightning in the area when he was writing that one. What a sad, sad man.”

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“Last Friday, Newton County employees were forced by county commissioners to take an unpaid ‘holiday,’ also known as an unpaid furlough day. Over the past six years Newton County commissioners have balanced the recession budget on the backs of the little guy county employees by making him/her take 15 unpaid furlough days a year that they called ‘holidays.’ It does not matter how good of a job you do, how hard you work, how many hours you put in, you will get no more pay. The only thing you will get, year after year for the past six years, is reduced benefits and medical coverage. Would you want to work for an organization that continually cuts your pay and benefits? The answer is no. That is why experienced people are quitting faster than the county can hire new inexperienced replacements.”

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“Do you believe in the American Dream? If you are loyal to an employer, if you work hard and help the company prosper, if you do your best and serve the customers, the company will take care of you. Not if you work for Newton County. If you work hard every day, you get the same pay as those who slack every day. If you work hard every day, you get the same pay as sick time abusers. If you work hard every day, same pay as those that do little while on duty. If this goes on day after day, year after year for six years … what behavior are you rewarding?

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“Newton Citizen, you should be ashamed for giving voice to that joke of a school board member and community college flunky each week. You can use any data you like. Mr. Meadors is quite the self-styled spinmeister when it comes to cherry-picking what fits his agenda, no matter how misleading or out of context. By any measure, I’m a highly effective teacher. My school is a highly effective school. My students are highly successful after they graduate. We’re sick and tired of having a board member who makes it his mission to denigrate the work of myself, my colleagues, and most of all, our students. Is everything in NCSS perfect? No. The key question is this: are you a part of the solution or are you a part of the problem? In his one term that is mercifully drawing to a close, Mr. Meadors has left no doubt as to which camp in which he resides.”

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“As a concerned parent and taxpayer, I watched the online video (YouTube) of the BOE meeting where the SACS report was delivered by the committee that came in from other schools and states to review the school system. I was surprised to see and hear all the good things they had to say. When I looked up scores in other districts, I was shocked. Our scores were very high, including higher than Oconee County, which seems to be the gold standard, according to what I’ve read in your paper. I wondered what the one board member who has made a living telling quite a different story would have to say about this, but he couldn’t even find the time to attend the meeting, apparently. I thought that’s what he was elected to do and obligated to do. I guess it’s all just optional and you can just participate when it happens to fit your agenda. I think somebody owes the citizens of Newton County an explanation for his embarrassing attendance record.”

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“Enough. I’m a teacher in this county and PROUD to be so. I’m also PROUD to send my own children to Newton County schools. I work in a school that consistently outperforms schools all over the map, whether in our area, across the state, charter, or virtual. If Mr. Meadors is so infatuated with Morgan County, it’s an easy problem to fix. I have plenty of friends, co-workers, and otherwise constructive members of this community who will be happy to help him pack his bags. We probably don’t need Delta in this case, but U-Haul is ready when you are, Mr. Meadors.”

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“Does these actions by the Russian government in recreating the USSR by moving in on the areas that have large number of citizens claiming the need for Russian protection, remind one of an English Prime Minister that allowed the occupation of one country of another. That ended up pretty bad. Chamberlain tried to negotiate the problem away, but he was lied to. I feel our president is trying the same thing, without no success. It looks like we may be going into another 20-year cold war. I wish that I had an answer for this problem, but I am like all of the cable talking heads — long on complaining short on any real answers. May wisdom prevail and the past not happen again.”