Parents, now is your chance to "opt out" of schools releasing students' directory data to the military who may contact young people with repeated phone calls and mailings to entice them into the service through expert salesmanship—and empty promises.
Since the 2001 No Child Left Behind Act, our schools are required to release directory data to the military recruiters unless parents check the box at the end of the two-page enrollment form filled out when you originally enrolled your child in Bend-La Pine Schools.
If you do not want the district to provide names, addresses and phone numbers to recruiters, or if you are unsure if you checked "opt out," you may ask the office staff at any of your child's schools if you checked the box for "opt out" of giving directory information to military recruiters and if not, how to get that done now.
As a retired teacher, I am very concerned with the U.S. being involved in wars. One of my great concerns is what effect it will have on families in the future, because, we know, war can have devastating effects on those who serve, and their children to come. This is not to dishonor those who served but to let parents know two things: That 15-to-18-year-olds will encounter expert recruiters at their high school commons and that directory information of secondary students requested by recruiters will be given out unless you check the "opt out" box on the enrollment form.
Consider the reactions of the media, the police state and government to the tragedies in West Texas and Boston.
NPR coverage of the Boston attacks was virtually nonstop, with speculation fueling fear, prejudice and panic. There were racial remarks on CNN and references to foreign terrorists and Islamic extremists on NPR.
The West Texas fertilizer explosion merited no such extensive coverage by NPR. The explosion was an "unfortunate accident" that killed people and destroyed a community. A corporate calamity with collateral damage and a temporary decline in profits.
The police state in Boston was in full force mode with lockdowns, shutdown of transportation, unwarranted searches and requests for public help to locate and identify suspects.
The role of the police state in West Texas was problematic since the media provided very little information. No need for a manhunt to identify and prosecute corporate suspects responsible for the explosion through indifference, negligence or illegal practices: the tragedy was just an accident.
Government officials in Boston have begun implementing more surveillance and security measures, further eroding constitutional rights.
Politicians will continue to underfund regulatory agencies responsible for corporate accountability in health and safety issues exposed in the West Texas disaster. Not a chance corporations will be required to prove in advance that they will do no harm, adhere to regulations or accept responsibility after a disaster.