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Opinion

  • With recent columns and letters to the editor in The Sentinel-News regarding Shelby County Public Schools, I wanted to provide my perspective having not been directly involved with SCPS for the past eight years after serving as superintendent for 16 years from 1988 until 2004.

  • I did not speak to the issue before the Triple S Planning Commission on Oct. 16 for a number of reasons: I hadn’t prepared anything, I wasn’t sure what the format would be, and I wanted to hear the presentation. However, in listening to the presenters for the zoning change request by Trio Development for its outlet mall project in Simpsonville, it occurred to me that we were taking a lot on faith and that some of the premises for this change were illusory.

  • Distinguished, Proficient or Needing Improvement – these are the categories by which Kentucky schools will be labeled in just a couple of weeks. Schools above the 90th percentile will be Distinguished. Those falling between the 70th and the 89th percentile will be Proficient. Those below the 70th will be classified as Needing Improvement.

  • Did Susan King of Mount Eden murder her former boyfriend Kyle “Deanie” Breeden of Shelbyville in 1998?

    That question, which for years haunted investigators and Mr. Breeden’s family, was thought to be at rest in 2008, when Ms. King was sent to prison.

    But now we have our own new set of questions about this case, including not only how the investigation has been handled but also who has a responsibility to ensure that Ms. King in fact did commit this crime.

  • Let me tell you something about the newest critter on our farm.

    No, this isn’t the magnificent, golden-tailed hawk that comes to sit on the black wooden fences separating two of our paddocks, more or less watching the horses eat their fill.

    This isn’t about the smudge-sized black field mice I saw scurrying under the leaves of the decaying melon patch as I was turning over the garden for fall – one of whom, I must confess, met an untimely interface when he was unearthed by the blades of my tiller, God rest his little vermin soul.

  • Herbert T. Riddle from Shelbyville was known as “Herb,” and I want to share his story, which is a story of how fate extended his life. He is 85 years old, but for a twist of change, he might not have reached that age.

    Mr. Riddle joined the Navy and was stationed at Barbara Point Naval Base in Hawaii. He was a tail gunner in a naval fighter plane that was to fly over the oceans and beaches around the islands of Hawaii.

  • We have a suggestion for Carl Henry, the new czar of parking in Shelby County.

    Mr. Henry, whose title actually is the county’s road supervisor, was given by Shelby County Fiscal Court the right to set parking regulations on all streets and roads under the county’s jurisdiction.

  • We were pleased to learn recently that the number of registered voters in Shelby County has increased since we last elected a president.

    That’s always encouraging, and because as our populace grows, we need those of age to do their constitutional – and moral – duty by becoming involved in the electorate process.

    The number of adults in Shelby County who have filed their paperwork to vote in this election is nearly 28,000, which is a strong percentage of those who are eligible.

    That’s the good news, but it also is not enough.

  • Perhaps the scariest time of my life came during a few weeks when I didn’t know how scared I should be.

    I was a third-grader, and at a time when most boys my age were concerned with being liked by classmates, having to take a regular bath and making the starting lineup, what I didn’t quite grasp was that the security of my world was teetering on the brink of total annihilation.

  • I keep saying to myself, I don’t understand! I really don’t. I am a dairy farmer’s wife in Shelby County, and we produce a high quality, wholesome product that sells in the stores today for $2.49 a gallon. In 1997 this same gallon of milk sold for an average price of $2.36 in Louisville, according to a 2000 summary by the Federal Milk Market Administrator.

    Dairy farmers have no say in those prices either at the store or the farm. We take the price given to us for our milk. The people who set those prices must think inflation doesn’t affect us.

  • We are if nothing else consistent in our efforts to provide encouragement and guidance for the people who build and manage the roads in our county, and we’re not planning to stop.

    And we feel that when the state Transportation Cabinet isn’t asking, that’s when engineers and officials are in the greatest need of our advice. So here’s today’s suggestion: Forget about placing more traffic signals on the Shelbyville Bypass.

  • Two more Shelby Countians are being considered among the very best at what they do in the state, and we like that.

    Sloane Barnett and Jennifer Cox are two of the 24 men and women statewide being considered for the honor of the state’s Teacher of the Year and moving on to national competition.

    Ms. Barnett, who teaches at Simpsonville Elementary, will vie with seven others for the top honor among elementary teachers. Ms. Cox, who teachers language arts at East Middle School, faces the same field among middle school instructors.

  • Leon Mooneyhan has taken on the role of the “music man” in Shelby County, trumpeting his vision for a downtown performance and convention center and scoring his own little symphony out of the sometimes discordant notes he hears.

    When I first chatted with Mooneyhan about his concept of a “City Center” for Shelbyville, about three years ago on a Saturday morning in the historic home of a mutual friend, it was – mixing my metaphors here – as if he were preaching a sermon while I was right behind him, wearing a robe and singing bass.

  • Friend to all! That’s how I will always remember Robert (Bob) Dean Logan.

    Bob’s passing evokes many memories dating back to our pre-elementary school days. And they are all good.

    I never heard Bob speak an unkind word about anybody with the possible exception of

    UK football coaches through the years. He was an ardent fan of the “Big Blue” and never understood why UK football couldn’t rival UK basketball.

  • On Friday night at Collins High School’s newly reopened turf field, the Titans will play host to rival Shelby County High School for the second time in their three years of existence.

    The first two games between these two have not been close, but this one looks on paper like it might be a real battle, indicative of a balancing of the playing field and the emergence of a true – if not simply geographic – rivalry. This should be a spectacle and a lot of fun for everyone.

    Except for one thing:

  • The Shelby County School Board has taken lot of constructive criticism recently about its actions relative to the tax assessments for this fiscal year. Some residents are asking hard questions about the decisions and the processes related to those assessments, and we will be watching this commentary unfold as it relates to the elections for the seats in three districts –  two contested –  this November.

  • We deserve better.

    On Sept. 11 a forum was scheduled for our congressional candidates sponsored by the Shelby County Farm Bureau. This would be one of the few times Shelby Countians would see our District 4 congressional candidates, Bill Adkins and Thomas Massie, live discussing their visions for our district. So, months before, I requested off work and did my best to spread the word to all my friends and family to attend this forum on agricultural issues.

  • It really puzzles me how Linda Allewalt (“Catholics can’t have issue both ways,” Aug. 29) could ignore the basic issue that her article puts forth concerning this administration’s contraception mandate, in light of existing law. It is just not the Catholics that this president and his administration demean, insofar as values are concerned. Most Christians believe the state must never infringe on the conscience of the citizens where religious beliefs would be violated.

  • A cousin called from Mississippi on Saturday morning to say that my beloved alma mater and her favorite team, Southern Mississippi, should get a new football coach.

    “A new coach?.” I said via an intermediary. “The guy only has coached two games. How can you dislike a coach after two games?”

    Did I mention this cousin was of a mature age, a God-fearing, church-going woman who speaks in a quiet, honey-thick Southern drawl that Andy and Gomer surely would appreciate, that her mother was my Aunt Bea? Well, that’s a side point.

  • The heart-stopping sounds that raise us from deep sleeps and catapult us into an adrenaline-infused tidal wave of fear now have a new coconspirator.

    You know that remorse that automatically overwhelms you when you hear a telephone ringing in the middle of the night or a text message beeping on your cellular telephone while you are aslumber. Each of us to is ingrained to believe that no good news ever arrives during those hours. Our personal histories stand testament to that.