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Posts Tagged ‘Manassas City Council’

G_Manassas_states_2368

 

Manassas wins 8u and 9u state titles in Baseball.

Girls 8u Softball team repeats as state champs.

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As Director of Manassas’ Parks & Recreation what do you consider the system’s most obvious shortcoming?

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Field of Dreams with Parking

Fields of Dreams with Parking

Hundreds of kids playing baseball and softball on city ball fields in a city ball park from early spring to late fall, could there be a better entrance, gateway to an American city? Or is Manassas simply destined to be a city located in a strip mall, where developers stuff dollar bills into politicians’ garters?

Did you get your parks and recreation survey in the mail? If not, Manassas citizens can also go to the city’s survey and tell the politicians what they can’t seem to figure out, i.e., kids need more than just tablets and recess denied, they need places to play and learn outside the overbearing reach of  a school board and a central office preoccupied with their self image.

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Big Scissors Everywhere in Manassas. Ballparks, Parks?

Big Scissors Everywhere in Manassas. Ballparks, Parks? Kids Playing Ball?

Here’s a hypothetical situation and question, I think it may have been presented at a recent Harvard JFK School of Government training course:

A community has 1,000 local kids who want to play baseball and softball on weeknights and weekends. You have thousands of local citizens family and friends of those kids who voluntarily supervise and monitor the kids as they play and learn the valuable life lessons which sports has to teach children. Suddenly the fields the kids are about to step foot on to play are hit by a tornado, and shortly thereafter, cosmically speaking, pummeled by a blizzard.

What’s a local leader to do?

A. Hold a ribbon cutting ceremony in Old Town?

B. Invite a 1000 kids from elsewhere and build them a new school and playground?

C. Hold a ribbon cutting ceremony in Old Town?

D. Sponsor an historical reenactment of the Civil War with an alternative outcome where you have one lone African-American symbolically tending the fields?

E. Hold a ribbon cutting ceremony in Old Town?

F. Fix the Frig’in Fields?

 

The above hypothetical question submitted to the Harvard JFK School of Government with no copyright strings attached is solely the product of one disgruntled volunteer parent who if he sees one more photo of a local leader cutting a ribbon without first addressing THIS hypothetical question will lead a hypothetical uprising of aforementioned hypothetical kids and adult volunteers surround the city hall while council is in session and wrap the building in toilet paper and silly string and force the local leaders to cut their way out of the building with what appears to be their endless supply of big, big, scissors.

 

 

 

 

 

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It’s not Manassas, but as Manassas reconsiders its parks and recreation programs perhaps it can learn from the best.

http://www.bestdesignedcity.com/

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At the beginning of the school year I was more than happy to give credit to MCPS for putting up a health warning on their web site about the virus that is spreading across the country and appears to be hitting kids especially hard. Three weeks into the school year I’m not feeling so great about the depth and effectiveness of the MCPS’ response to what is becoming one of major issues facing our schools and schools around the country in their mission to educate and safeguard our kids during the school day.

For a school system which has the resources to be handing out free IPads like candy and which has a compulsive obsession with issuing feel good public affairs announcements, one would think someone in authority either on the school board or in the central office would realize that a web warning with a list of symptoms and guidelines was only one step that needed to taken. Another even more obvious step would have been to devote some resources to increasing the health care staffing and support to meet the obviously predictable rush to the school clinics. This was not hard to see coming. I can tell you from first hand observation right now the Osbourn and Mayfield nurse offices need help and additional space, I suspect the other schools in the MCPS are in similar need.

What to do? I know what the School Board and Central Office first response will be: “WE WANT MORE MONEY!” Well, here’s an alternative for the people who wanted to run our schools: You go down to the school nurses’ office and YOU take time out of your work days and your family times and you volunteer and help respond to the health threat which YOU saw coming but which you thought could simply be treated with a public health warning. You dumped this on the nurses and the schools, you deal with it in the real world just like the staff, students and parents are being forced to deal with it.

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“The record flood of Central American children crossing the U.S. border is stretching funds and setting off improvisation at public schools.

While politicians spend the summer fighting over how to turn back the tide, school leaders across the country are struggling to absorb a new student population the size of Newark, New Jersey. More than 40,000 children, many of them fresh from violent, harrowing journeys, have been released since October to stateside relatives as courts process their cases.

“These kids were homesick and heartbroken,” said Robin Hamby, a family specialist for Fairfax County Public Schools in suburban Washington, which began feeling the surge almost as soon as it began three years ago.

Her Virginia district employs more teachers who work with non-English speakers than ever, and wrote a curriculum to reunite children and parents, many of whom haven’t seen one another in years. Houston is increasing training and translation. Los Angeles nurses are working overtime to screen for emotional trauma created on the journey north.”

 

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/chi-us-classrooms-prepare-for-flood-as-migrants-become-pupils-20140712%2c0%2c4201836.story

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