VALDOSTA — THUMBS UP: To all the CPIE volunteers who were recognized for their hard work and contributions this week by the Valdosta and Lowndes school systems. These area businesses adopt schools and help supply needs that are not met in other ways. They mentor students, sponsor reading programs, donate supplies and much more. The schools show their appreciation for volunteers each year through the CPIE awards banquet and the Times is happy to provide the space to thank them as well.
THUMBS UP: To Valdosta State University for recognizing the importance of the 50th anniversary of integration at the college. Although it took years before full integration became the norm, someone always has to be the first. The two students who took that first step in Sept. 1963 laid the groundwork for generations to follow. Today, the university has dozens of nationalities on staff and as students. Kudos to VSU for celebrating their diversity.
THUMBS UP: To vigilant neighbors and local law enforcement officers who are working to catch those breaking into cars and houses. Thieves look for easy targets. Keeping your valuables with you or in a safe place can help prevent becoming a target, but more importantly, keeping an eye on your neighborhood and reporting suspicious activity is essential in helping officers do their jobs to catch those committing these acts.
THUMBS DOWN: To the Hudson Falls Public Library in New York which fired a longtime library aide this week for defending a nine year old who won the summer reading contest five years in a row. A child who reads more than 60 books in a summer should be celebrated, not punished for “hogging” the contest. The head librarian wants to change the contest rules for next year, but shouldn’t have punished the library aide for following them this year. The embarrassment this has caused the nine-year old and the message this sends to other children by denigrating the importance of excelling in education is harmful and shameful.