November 3, 2013

Letters to the editor: Maine moms push for chemical safety

(Continued from page 1)

There is unfortunately – at a dear cost to our national security, mission and budget – no one in DHS or the administration holding such unscrupulous, devoid-of-integrity CBP management to account other than Chapter 141!

Alan D. Mulherin

president, NTEU Chapter 141


Alert grammar cop finds last line of story arresting

“License and registration please. Hmm. Mr. Ingrammaticus, you’re a copy editor for the Portland Press Herald? Thought so. We’ve been looking for you. Here’s a copy of today’s paper; please read the last line of this story.

“Notice anything wrong? No? Let me read it to you: ‘A Sparks, Nev., middle school teacher was allegedly shot by a 12-year-old student on Monday.’ Still nothing?

“OK, let me spell it out for you. The teacher was not ‘allegedly’ shot. That he was shot is a fact. An allegation is an unproven statement, and the medical examiner proved that the teacher was shot by examining the body. The only allegation is the possibility that the 12-year-old student is the one who shot him. You can say something like ‘On Monday, a Nevada middle school teacher was shot; a 12-year-old student is the alleged shooter.’ That’s not great, but it’s better than what you wrote.

“Oh, you didn’t write it? You pulled it off the wire service? How many times have I heard that excuse? It’s your paper, and you’re responsible for what’s printed in it, right?

“What kind of cop am I? Take a look at the badge. Yeah, you don’t see many of us any more. We’re having trouble finding new recruits; the schools just don’t train them like they used to. But we’re here. Keep your eyes on the rear view mirror.

“OK, you’re free to go, with a warning. Write carefully.”

Gustin Kiffney


Students will see benefits of new science standards

We strongly support the Next Generation Science Standards and would like to share with the public our perspective on how the standards will benefit our students, schools and communities.

The standards are a blueprint to bring science education into the 21st century, based on vetted research of how students learn. They are different than the current standards in that they emphasize practices in science and engineering that teach students to use evidence and reasoning to make sense of the 21st-century world around them.

The Next Generation Science Standards are not federal standards but the work of experts from 26 states, including Maine, working together. Accomplished K-16 educators and researchers wrote the standards. Citizens across our state and country, including us, provided feedback and leadership for every draft released the last two years.

Working as a broad coalition of states, Maine teachers will have access to free, quality resources that previously didn’t exist and assessments that will save the state money. (For more information, please visit

Our midcoast school districts, Community School District 19 and School Administrative District 28, have begun studying and implementing the standards.

We are uniformly excited about the positive effect these standards will have. The science standards allow teachers and districts significant local control and creativity while offering them guidance on the scope and sequence of topics that should be taught in K-12 science classrooms.

Though this letter outlines our views on the Next Generation Science Standards, we feel similarly excited about the Common Core. We hope that our legislators will join other states in adopting the Next Generation Science Standards and the Common Core.

These standards will help guide our school programs to prepare students with complex skills and knowledge that will allow them to engage in a future full of possibility.

Lisa Damian-Marvin

physics teacher, Camden Hills Regional High School

Margo Murphy

global science teacher, Camden Hills Regional High School


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