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Remedial course doesn't make the grade

I'd like to present another viewpoint regarding the remedial classes at St. Petersburg Junior College.

My daughter was one of the 66 percent that failed a portion of the math placement test. She graduated in 1996 from Dixie Hollins, where she was an honor student in advanced placement and honors classes. She had successfully completed algebra in her junior year.

We were not told of the high failure rate of these college placement tests, and we also didn't know that failure would result in the requirement to take non-credit remedial courses at the same per-credit-hour rate as a credit class.

When I pushed the issue, they conceded that a retest was an option, but they already knew the usual result.

The retest was designed for failure, and she ended up taking the remedial class at my expense and she aced it.

Attendance was optional and the content wasn't nearly as difficult as the pre-admission test would lead one to believe.

I feel that passing a high school algebra course should be admission criteria and if the students fail algebra at SPJC, so be it. It seems to me that these remedial courses are just another way for the college to gouge for money in an era where funding is being scrutinized.

Vicki Glow, St. Petersburg

Osborne should listen

to prayer, not ban it

Re: Dunedin Commissioner Tom Osborne's request to ban prayer at commission meetings.

Whether he is called Lord, Jehovah or Allah, the majority of Americans believe in God. Our founding fathers refer to us as being endowed by our creator in the Declaration of Independence. As a country, we were formed with God in mind and this perspective has served us well for more than 200 years. Look on any bill in your wallet and you will see "In God We Trust." Say the Pledge of Allegiance and you will say "one nation under God"

The division of church and state is a weak excuse to ban prayer from public meetings, since freedom of expression and religion are guaranteed to us in the Constitution.

History has shown time and time again that when God is taken out of the equation, nations fail.

Our country's social fabric has been in a decline since spirituality has become politically incorrect. Our governing officials need to do all they can to reclaim that perspective upon which we were founded.

Listening to prayers for their "legalistic content," as you state you do, is an absurd exercise.

For a change, start to listen to prayer for the empowering guidance you will receive, and you will find that the rich source of the governing genius of our forefathers is available today to help you in your role as a commissioner.

Pat Jennings, Dunedin

Thanks for the votes,

and a wish for the best

To the 605 people who voted for me in the Safety Harbor election, I say thank you and God bless. To the people who didn't vote for me, I say, it's your loss.

To the majority of the people who didn't take advantage of their wonderful privilege to vote, I say, I feel sorry for you.

Until you realize what a privilege you squandered, I suggest you lock yourselves in your homes and don't voice your opinions of our government until you decide your vote is the only valuable thing in life in America that is given to you "free."

When I decided to seek the commission seat, it had only been three months that I lost the dearest person in my life _ my Great Lady, wife and best friend for 32 years, "Sissie," whom you all knew and admired.

During the campaign I felt another loss would be devastating. I find now I was wrong. The only devastating thing in my life is not having Sissie to come home to every day. My values have changed considerably.

My many years of continued care and dedication to Safety Harbor were worth the experience, but obviously not appreciated.

I will now take my well-deserved hiatus from that involvement and watch from the sidelines.

I will close the book on my life as a caring, concerned, dedicated resident of Safety Harbor by wishing you "few voters" the best for our city in the years to come.

God bless your elected officials and the handful of "concerned voters."

Jerry Bierman, Safety Harbor

Thanks for support

and endorsements

I want to congratulate Largo Mayor Thom Feaster and all three commissioners, Pat Burke, Jim Miles and Jean Halvorsen on their elections. I do hope they all have a great new term in office.

I wish to thank the police, firefighters and city workers and their unions for the endorsements and support during my campaign for the office of city commissioner.

Most of all I wish to say thanks to the almost 2,000 friends, neighbors and fellow Largo residents who voted for me. I had the most votes of anybody not elected.

My understanding is that somehow in the mobile home community, it was said that I was part of an anti-mobile home organization that called mobile home owners "trailer trash."

I want it made very clear, I did not, am not and would not ever belong to an organization like that.

Once again I must say congratulations to the winner and thank you to the supporters.

Phil Jones, Largo

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