"What difference at this point does it make?"
Oh, how those words echoed in the hearts and minds of all who heard then Secretary of State Hillary R. Clinton address the Congressional Committee on January 27, 2014. Americans watched in horror as our U.S. Ambassador Stevens, along with Sean Smith, Tyrone Woods, Glen Doherty were murdered in Benghazi.
At the very heart of the question above lies the answer to the Letter to the Editor in the April 26 paper by a new resident to the City of Weatherford who is running for office. While there is not an "R" or "D" by the name of any individual on the local election ballot, each of the candidates on the ballot has values and beliefs that are more closely aligned with one party or the other. They either agree with Republicans that our society needs less regulation, lower taxes, policy to promote strong family values, and local control of most issues with a strong dose of personal accountability, or they agree with Democrats that believe that government is the answer to most problems.
What difference at this point does it make? There is NO non-partisan issue that the city council or school board member is going to make as they represent us. It’s very important to know and understand how that person will make decisions for us as they lead our community and vote to spend our tax dollars. Their beliefs and values are at the core of every vote that affects our families and businesses. From the White House to our house, we encourage all of like mind to come join with the Republican Party as we register voters, work on local, state and national campaigns, volunteer at headquarters, and most of all, enjoy building lifelong friendships with other Parker County residents.
In Parker County, we vote 85 percent Republican, and "Conservative Values Matter" as we elect City Council and School Board Members. Election Day is Saturday. Don’t forget to vote because each and every one of us matters. Please give me a call at 817-594-5029 if you have questions or need a ride to the polls.
Parker County Republican Chairman,
In regard to Judy Beeman’s letter to the editor April 22, I would agree that we should all love our neighbor but we cannot adequately love others without the love of Christ. We can love the sinner but never the sin that so many willfully commit. Nowhere in scripture does God condone homosexuality. Maybe Ms. Beeman feels that her acceptance of homosexuality doesn’t affect her marriage but her attitude certainly disappoints God. The Bible says 1) that same sex couples are not equal because God made male and female to love and reproduce 2) Non-Christians are defined in any dictionary or thesaurus as “heathen” and do not believe in the God of the Bible 3) I know of no-one who thinks of people of color should be treated as lesser humans.
We should all abide by what God clearly says in His inherent word and not twist the scripture to personally suit us in today’s culture like so many choose to do. The scripture is very clear to what God has to say.
I deeply appreciate the hard work of the current WISD Board and the manner in which the Board, with participation of many citizens, is striving to meet the needs of WISD district and our treasured children. A “yes” vote is an investment in our children and our community, not a financial burden. The current Board represents business, parents and volunteers. What the board needs is a Trustee who has a business and farming background as well as experience as a teacher and administrator in WISD.
Ben Schoonover, a graduate of Weatherford High School, is an ideal candidate who knows all too well the needs and challenges that students, parents, faculty and staff face in these trying times. Ben Schoonover is seeking the opportunity to use his broad experience on behalf of the school district and the Weatherford community. A man of uncommon humility, Ben is not running a flashy or expensive campaign. He only seeks to serve, in appreciation for the blessing he has received is seeing the success of former students.
If you speak to former students and adults who know him, they will speak highly of Ben’s integrity and character. He will approach every issue brought to the Board methodically and in a responsible and ethical manner. Ben will honor his position and will perform his duties in accordance with school law and in a manner that reflects positive community values. Ben truly has the mind, heart and soul of a servant who strives to promote excellence in education. WISD is in need of Ben Schoonover as Trustee for WISD school Board.
Rachel R. Johnson
Concerned citizen and former WISD Trustee
Reference the letter from Judy B. Beeman concerning her approval and acceptance of the homosexual life style and same sex marriage. As a Christian, it is not up to me to approve or disapprove same sex marriage. God is the one who condemns these two lifestyles. It is true that God is a God of love, but He is also a God of judgment. Reference Genesis 19 which tells of God's destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah because of their homosexual lifestyle. In 1 Cor. 6:9-10 God condemns homosexuals and states that they will not inherit the kingdom of God. So, if an individual is upset because there are those of us who disapprove of the homosexual lifestyle and same sex marriage don't get angry with us, get angry with God because He is the one who condemns and judges.
Almost a decade ago, I chose to run for the Weatherford ISD Board of Trustees. Thankfully, the public trusted me at that time and has since elected me to three consecutive terms of service. The last two years, with great pride, I have served as your Board President. My wife, Courtney, and I have two children in the WISD and are extremely pleased with the quality of education our children are receiving.
Recently, the Board of Trustees unanimously voted to propose three separate bond propositions for voter consideration. This decision was not made lightly. It came after 18 months of extensive feedback from our community, from face-to-face visits and surveys, to multiple hours volunteered by our fellow citizens studying the challenges that face our district. All of the items included in the bond propositions were originally generated by a committee that consisted of citizens, teachers, business owners and students. I am proud and humbled by their service to our kids and to our taxpayers.
The last time our community supported a bond package was 15 years ago. If you look at our neighboring communities, all of their school districts have passed one or more school bond elections since we have in Weatherford. These districts have updated, modern, safe facilities that have been a product of successful bond programs in their communities.
Whether you have a child or grandchild in the WISD or not, it still matters. Quality schools drive local economies, drive up property values and are a factor when new families or businesses consider moving to a new area. Communities that don’t invest in their schools force homeowners and business owners to leave, investing their dollars elsewhere.
But, more importantly than that, I believe every child in this community is "our" child. They depend on us, and it is imperative that we stand up and do what is right for them. They are the future of Our Weatherford.
Please join Courtney and I in voting FOR all three propositions. These are our kids. This is our community. This is our time.
I have seen letters and an ad claiming the cost to build a new Shirley Hall Middle School is $372 a square foot. That information is simply not accurate. I was a member of the FACTS committee and here is the correct information.
The budget for the New Hall Middle School uses the cost of $210/square foot.
The total bond project amount also includes the cost to demolish and abate the existing Hall Middle School as well as provide a new track, field and bleachers. There is also escalation to account for rise in construction costs between now and when the project bids. There are soft costs such as fees, permits, surveying costs and material testing. It also budgets for all the items that go in to new schools such as desks, chairs, shelving and cafeteria tables. The budget accounts for technology infrastructure and items like servers, telephones, intercom systems, security systems and cameras. Then there is contingency – additional budget dollars to be used in case of unforeseen occurrences or costs.
This proposed amount for Hall Middle School is not a bid and is not "set in stone." It is a conservative, turn-key budget to get the school up and running and ensures that the district is able to deliver what it has promised its voters. Once the bond election is successful, the planning and design phase will occur, and all projects will be competitively bid to get the best price available at that time.
To compare the total turn-key bond budget amount of the proposed Hall Middle School to the raw construction costs of other schools is not a fair, apples-to-apples comparison. When schools report the cost per square foot for new buildings, they report what it cost for construction, not everything else that is spent to actually get the school completed and functioning.
I am writing this letter in support of all three propositions of the WISD Bond Election. As a long time educator and business owner, I know firsthand the importance of quality schools in a community. For 39 years I have paid property taxes for the fine entities that are in Parker County. I have always considered these taxes as an investment in the future of my community.
As the owner of The Pizza Place, I make decisions based on a cost-benefit analysis. In this election the benefits far outweigh the cost. The basic premise in a democracy is an educated citizen.
We are blessed to have the best teachers in Texas and for them to prepare our students for future success they must have the necessary technology and facilities to do so. Our students are 21st century learners and we must prepare them to live in a technology driven 21st century world. What students are learning today is very different from what I learned during school. Matter of fact, it is even different than what our students were learning five years ago. A shift towards a digital learning environment is occurring and it is our responsibility as citizens of Weatherford to embrace these changes and provide our students with 21st century facilities that adequately support technology in the learning process.
As a proud Vietnam veteran, I have learned to appreciate what I had taken for granted in this country. We need to remember that a little sacrifice for something that serves a greater good is what made Weatherford and the United States a great place to raise a family.
I ask you to join me in supporting this great community by voting YES to all three propositions of the WISD Bond!
I am writing to endorse Amy Bonnett for Weatherford ISD Board of Trustees Place 1. I had the pleasure of serving with Amy on the Weatherford ISD Facility Advisory of Citizens, Teachers and Students (FACTS) Committee. We spent countless hours educating ourselves on the existing needs of our district.
Because of Amy’s role on the FACTS Committee, her commitment to this community, her volunteer work in our district as well as her involvement in the WISD schools as both a parent and a mentor, I believe she is the best candidate for Place 1. Amy is knowledgeable of the needs in our district and supports all three propositions of the upcoming WISD bond election. She values what is best for our children and our community and understands the urgency of this bond. I admire her dedication to the children of our community and her servant heart. She is exactly who we need on our school board making crucial decisions for our school district that in turn impacts our community.
Amy is running because she truly wants to do her part in making WISD “the world class district of choice.” I ask that you join me in voting for Amy Bonnett.