Issue 12.34 | Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2012
GwinnettForum.com is a twice-weekly online community commentary for exploring pragmatic and sensible social, political and economic approaches to improve life in Gwinnett County, Ga. USA.
LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga., Aug. 7, 2012 -- Accountability. We all have responsibilities, at home, at work, at school. And yet, if one Constitutional Amendment on the November 6 ballot is approved, it will bypass any accountability about our public schools.
The Ballot Question reads:
Sounds logical. But unless we all vote "No," here's the reality check:
The bottom line: Passage of this amendment will mean more budget cuts to our public schools, larger classes, shortened school years, teacher furloughs and layoffs.
facts before you vote:
bottom line: passage will result in an expanded state government, no accountability,
more budget cuts to our public schools, larger class sizes, shortened
school years, teacher furloughs and layoffs.
As the old adage goes, follow the money. Those who want to expand state government into our children's schools' lives, those who favor a lack of accountability and those who prefer a separate, unequal, dual school system will soon plow millions of dollars into Georgia for your "yes" vote. They call themselves Families for Better Schools or Parents for School Choice. Don't be deceived. Several out-of-Georgia political action committees are behind this push all over the country. Visit www.votesmartgeorgia.com to understand who's funding this push, who the real "families" are and the real issues.
I am proud to live and work in Gwinnett County and I am proud of our school system. I am a parent of a first grader and a Gwinnett public school graduate myself. Because of our schools, our businesses and our economy do well. Both are a great credit to this community I call home. Let's keep it that way. Vote no on November 6.
An old proverb says, "Tell me and I'll forget; show me and I may remember; involve me and I'll understand." Get involved and understand the issue before you vote on November 6.
AUG. 7, 2012 -- Students returning to the University of Georgia will find a new campus fully in operation next week -- yes, a new 56-acre campus. The former Navy Supply Corps School (NSCS) on Prince Avenue in Athens was returned to the University last year, and is now the UGA Health Sciences Campus. Earlier in its history, the campus was known as the "Normal" campus, where freshmen women once were taught and lived.
The University hosted a media day for the new campus last week. The prime components of this campus are the UGA College of Public Health, and the new medical partnership between UGA and the Georgia Health Sciences University. The opening of the new facilities now gives UGA its own facilities for a class of future doctors to be taught on the Athens campus. For years UGA was seeking a medical school, along with an engineering school. It gained both in the last few years.
The beautiful Health Science Campus comes at a good price. Valued at $90 million, the University picked up the land and all its buildings for a mere $10 million, which under the agreement with the U.S. Department of Education went toward establishment of an endowment for the homeless in the Athens area. Now the University has put in another $20 million to modernize and equip the new medical campus facilities.
Students will be in classes there next week.. The Naval School was eliminated as part of the military's Base Closure and Realignment (BRAC) program.
Altogether, this year there will be 560 Public Health students on the campus, plus 120 medical partnership students, along with the faculty members. By fall 2015, approximately 1,400 faculty, staff and students will be based at the Health Sciences Campus.
It's the med students that are getting the most attention on the new campus. While the medical school in Augusta has 190 students per class, initially there are only 40 medical students per class at the Athens campus, anticipated to grow to 60 students per year, perhaps by 2014.
However, while both Augusta and Athens will graduate full Medical Doctors, the approach is far different. Students in Augusta, with larger classes, are often in lecture halls, while the smaller size of the Athens class allows small group, hands-on instruction, with a lower teacher-student level, with students working in teams. Both are expected to learn the same basic medical information.
What medical school officials in Athens are working closely on now is arranging for local hospitals in Northeast Georgia to become aligned with the medical school for further training of the students. Gwinnett Medical Center is part of this program, as are significant hospitals in this area. It gives students first-hand training in a series of rotations, as they go about the rounds with doctors and work in outpatient offices, hospitals and other healthcare settings.
The majority of clinical practices that will educate medical students will be in the greater Athens area. Students will also be placed in outlying areas including Loganville, Elberton, Jefferson, Gainesville and Gwinnett County.
Dean of the College of Public Health is Dr. Phil Williams, while Dr. Barbara Schuster is dean of the medical partnership at UGA.
If you're interested in this new campus, UGA will host a public open house at the campus on August 22.
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Editor, the Forum:
In Gwinnett County, whenever you sit down at a fine restaurant at the Mall of Georgia, attend a concert at the Gwinnett Arena, are in a hotel banquet room for the Governor's Environmental address or attend a trade show or high school graduation at the Gwinnett Civic Center, you should lift a toast to John Schwab. Who do you say? John Schwab.
John was the driving force in the creation and development of Gwinnett's business of fine dining, hospitality, conventions and hotels. He created and later chaired the Gwinnett Convention and Visitors Bureau for the five year period of 1991-96. He envisioned what is now the Gwinnett Civic Center and Arena and single-handily fashioned the amendment to the Georgia Hotel/Motel Tax law to enable use of the tax for payment for the Civic Center and Performing Arts Center. He was chairman of the board of the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce in 1988.
A native of Kansas, John came to Gwinnett in the early 70s as the manager of Lamar Hunt's Peachtree World of Tennis (PWT). He oversaw championship professional tennis come to Gwinnett in the person of Bobby Riggs, Billy Jean King, Pete Sampras, John McEnroe, Jennifer Caprietti and a host of other big-time stars of Wimbleton and the world stage of tennis.
He championed youth tennis and fostered the formation of ALTA. He ultimately shepherded the donation of PWT to the Southern Tennis Foundation in 1994.While at PWT, he help found the Peachtree Corners Rotary Club. He continued to live near PWT until the time of his death in late July. John was 81.
Twice divorced, John was named Gwinnett's Most Eligible Bachelor in 1986. He wondered aloud how that could be, since he had been thrown back at least twice.
He was trained as an opera tenor and knew the great tenors of the day. He could call Pavarotti or Placido Domingo and chat for hours. Brilliant and gifted, John was more often the smartest guy in the room. He loved his dogs, plus Johnny Walker Black Scotch and a cigarette.
John William Schwab, 1931-2012: may you rest in peace.
Frustrated independent citizens find no group for association
Editor, the Forum:
What does the Republican or Democratic Party stand for? Neither stands for justice with corporate America, as both are on the corporate payroll.
U.S. Rep. Rob Woodall (7th District) would like us to believe he can legislate more jobs without increasing the size of the Federal Government. More lies. The only way the federal government can create jobs is by hiring federal employees. I think we all agree there are plenty of those.
your representatives how they can create legislation that forces corporations,
many of which are sitting on records piles of cash today, to actually
hire people. Tax code adjustments whether with the "Fair Tax"
proposed by Republicans, or extending the Bush corporate tax cuts, does
not guarantee more jobs. Corporate hiring does. The federal government
does not have the authority to force corporate hiring. Tax breaks for
large corporations do not help small businesses which currently have to
file four times a year and guess what their taxes will be, coupled with
steep penalties for mistakes when guesses are wrong.
Job creation as a presidentially-controlled item is a myth that is peddled every four election years. Its sole purpose is to leverage false promises by any candidate who says they can impact that. I would publicly ask those corporations who are sitting on piles of cash why they aren't hiring more people. Apple Computers seems to get it. As an example they are one of those corporations sitting on piles of cash and have recently increased retail employee salaries by 25 percent. As sales increase, they hire more people. That is how more jobs are created in the private sector.
Recalling her first day at kindergarten, guy with two necks
Editor, the Forum:
Being the youngest of four children by at least nine years has its advantages. For one thing, I had Mother's undivided attention every weekday from September to June. On the negative side, I had Mother's undivided attention every weekday from September to June.
We lived a rather isolated existence in a houseboat on the Delaware River, especially isolated during the winter months. With my oldest brother in the Navy, the next two older children at school all day and Father at work, it was a lonely life for a little girl. I looked forward to escaping. We did not have "pre-school" in 1943 but we did have the option of attending kindergarten at the age of five. I could hardly wait.
Mother insisted on accompanying me right to the door of the classroom that first day. As she stood there tearfully telling me not to be afraid and that she would stay there as long as I wanted, I caught my first glimpse of the world of academia. My eyes beheld about 20 assorted five-year-olds cavorting in a room furnished with child-sized tables and chairs as well as a sandbox, a sliding board and a playhouse. The lone adult in the room was a pretty young woman with long brown hair and a gentle smile. With a gurgle of glee and nary a backward glance I plunged into the fray.
I later heard Mother recounting the episode over the telephone to my Aunt Mary. "That little imp never looked back once she entered that room," she sniffled. "I was devastated but she was having the time of her life." And it was true. I loved school from the very first moment.
That evening over dinner I prattled on and on about how wonderful it was to have all those children to play with, the nice lady who was our teacher and my new best friend, Barbara. No one else could get a word in edgewise until Father finally asked, "But did you LEARN anything today?"
That stopped me for all of about two seconds and then I blurted out, "Yes, Mr. Lippincott has two necks." Stunned silence greeted this disclosure until my older sister started to giggle. She alone understood the reference. She finally contained herself enough to enlighten the others.
were the only children living on the island, the school board provided
a driver with a station wagon to come transport us to school. The ancient
driver was Mr. Lippincott. My brother, Ted, sat in the front seat next
to him while Diana and I were relegated to the back seat. I wasn't big
enough to see out of the windows so my view was restricted to the back
of the driver's head. As with many very skinny old men, Mr. Lippincott's
scrawny neck consisted of two perpendicular muscles, one on either side
of his spinal cord with a deep crevasse in the middle, thereby creating
the illusion of "two necks."
Thus ended my first day of school, leaving precious memories of my very first "best friend" and the man with two necks.
The Hudgens Center for the Arts announces an upcoming juried Member's Exhibit. Open to all members of the Hudgens, 18 years of age and older, this exhibit will be featured September 11 through December 22 in the Georgia Gallery at the Hudgens Center for the Arts in Duluth. Memberships can be purchased at the time of entry, and start at the $20 Student level or $30 Individual.
Entries will be accepted between August 25 and September 1, and the cost for entries is $10 for one or $20 for two pieces of artwork. Prizes include a "Best in Show" award of $100 and three "Honorable Mention" awards of $50 each, to be selected by juror Jerry Cullum. Media accepted for the Members Exhibit are: Drawing, Painting, Printmaking, Mixed Media, Ceramics, Glass, Photography, Fiber Art, and Sculpture.
Cullum has served as an art critic for the Atlanta Journal and Constitution, a contributor to ARTnews and Art in America, and writes reviews for both Burnaway.org and Artscriticatl.com. He has also taught at Emory University and the Atlanta College of Art and has curated exhibitions for the Telfair Museum of Arts, the Marietta-Cobb Museum of Art and Whitespace Gallery, and co-curated an upcoming exhibit at the Atlanta Preservation Center that opens in October. He also served in various editorial positions at Art Papers from 1984 to 2011.
Angela Nichols, director of programming and education at the Hudgens, states: "It is a wonderful way to celebrate our members who are artists by showing off their talent, as well as support the arts in our own community."
City of Duluth accepting applications for L.E.A.D. program
Do you want to learn more about the City of Duluth operations and the city itself? L.E.A.D. is a program that offers an avenue for citizens to become knowledgeable about city operations, services, and the overall essential functions of city government. It offers an interactive learning experience, which includes information about City services, programs and responsibilities.
Additionally, citizens casually interact with elected officials and city staff. Class participants are afforded the opportunity to ask questions and gain a better understanding of Duluth government and their role in local government.
The Academy is a six-week program, beginning September 25th and continuing each Tuesday through October 30, from 6 to 9 p.m. Applications are available online at www.duluthga.net and at City Hall. The deadline for applications is Friday, August 31. For more information, contact Alisa Williams at 678-475-3506.
Fall art classes to begin Aug. 20 at Hudgens Center for the Arts
will begin the week of August 20 at the Hudgens Center for the Arts. Classes
are available for both day and evening times, and typically meet one day
a week for eight weeks, though some meet only six weeks, such as the parent/child
pottery class. There are daytime pottery classes offered specifically
The Hudgens also has great one-day workshops, including making your own tools from fired clay, children's Saturday creative drawing, making enameled jewelry, sgraffito (carving on clay), soap making and making hand lotions & toiletries.
Class lists with full descriptions and online registration are available on the website at www.thehudgens.org. Registrations can also be made by phone at 770-623-6002, through the mail using the printable registration form from the Web site, or in person.
of Transportation District Engineer Bayne Smith announces that Scott Zehngraff
is now DOT's District Traffic Engineer for the 21 counties in Northeast
"Now that we've moved past "the Eagle has landed" to successfully placing the Rover on Mars, there is no better time to think about what it will require for NASA to actually send people to Mars. Mary Roach's Packing for Mars tackles just this query, though the fair reader should be warned, this book, like her others (Stiff, Bonk and Spook) is not for the faint of heart. In her thorough (and thoroughly entertaining) contemplation of the subject, Ms. Roach takes a deep dive into the details of designing a successful Mars mission. How do you eat? How do you sleep? How do you excrete? What is the effect of weightlessness on bone density? What are the psychological effects of 2 ½ years of space travel (note - it is estimated it would take astronauts six months to reach Mars, and then they would conduct experiments and excursions for 18 months, with a six month return time). With her witty asides and constant use of informative footnotes, Ms. Roach takes a subject that many of us take for granted - space travel - and boils it down to its most basic, and most human, elements. If you are a potential space tourist, or wondered why NASA is a key line item in the federal budget, or are just a nerd who often asks "how" and "why", then this book is a must-read."
In 1936 archaeologist Arthur R. Kelly located the remains of a fortified trading establishment in the midst of a Creek Indian archaeological site on the Ocmulgee National Monument.
Although historical documentation is lacking, it appeared to be an English trading house established while the Creek Indians were living in the area of present-day Macon during the period 1690-1718. The post is believed to have been burned in the Yamasee War of 1715. Excavations have turned up all sorts of artifacts, including axes, clay pipes, beads, knives, swords, bullets, flints, pistols, and muskets.
The remains of the trading post consisted of two buildings surrounded by a five-sided stockade with posts set in a narrow ditch (the stockade wall of the trading post is now outlined by concrete bumpers) and further enclosed on four sides by a larger moatlike ditch. The stockade enclosed an area of approximately one-quarter acre. A depressed roadway, believed to be part of the old Creek trading path, leads up to the compound ruins.
Excavations of the trading house also have revealed a number of Native American graves, with European trade goods primarily from English sources. Archaeological evidence indicates that the trading house was not present continuously throughout the Creek period. Archaeologist Gregory Waselkov suggests that the fortified settlement probably dates to the period after 1702, when English-backed Creeks from this area attacked Spanish missions in present Florida. Expecting reprisals, they built fortifications but probably did not need them after the Creeks destroyed the Apalachee missions in and around present Tallahassee, Florida, in 1704.
Archaeologist Carol Mason argues that the remains are from the Hitchiti town of Ocmulgee, the residence of English trader James Lucas. Based on his interpretation of the Herbert Map of 1725, archaeologist Marvin Smith suggests that the complex may be the town of Kasihta. While the exact identification of the town and trading establishment is controversial, it may well be the origin point for English-backed Creek raiders who destroyed the Spanish missions in present Florida in 1702 and again in 1704.
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© 2012, Gwinnett Forum.com. Gwinnett Forum is an online community commentary for exploring pragmatic and sensible social, political and economic approaches to improve life in Gwinnett County, Ga. USA.
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"A compromise is the art of dividing a cake in such a way that everyone believes that he has got the biggest piece."
MORE COPIES AVAILABLE
Previously out of print, Elliott Brack's 850-page history, "Gwinnett: A Little Above Atlanta," is now available again. Since its original publication, the book was declared the winner of the 2010 Award of Excellence for documenting Georgia history by the Georgia Historical Records Advisory Board. It is also the winner of the Gwinnett Historical Society's Whitworth-Flanigan Award for 2011 for preserving the history of Gwinnett County.The book includes 143 demographic and historic tables, with more than 4,000 names in the index, and 10,000 names in the appendix.Two versions of the book are available. The hardback edition is priced at $75, while a softback edition is $40. Books are available at:
You can also order
books through the Internet. To do that, go to www.elliottbrack.com
to place your order. For mail orders, there is a $5 shipping and handling
fee. Purchases are also subject to the 6 percent Georgia sales tax.
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IN THE COMING WEEK
(NEW) Snellville Citizen Survey Results for 2012 will be the subject of the meeting of the Snellville Commerce Club August 7 (today) at noon at the Snellville City Hall. Speaker will be Councilman Tom Witts, telling how perceptions of the city have changed since the 2010 survey.
(NEW) Safety Scavenger Hunt: 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., Aug. 7 at Lighting Up Lilburn's Night, Lilburn City Park Pavilion. Over 50 door prizes will be awarded. Demonstrations on safety and security are on the program.
MORE EEB PERSPECTIVE
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© 2001-2012, Gwinnett Forum.com is Gwinnett County's online community forum for commentary that explores pragmatic and sensible social, political and economic approaches to improve life in Gwinnett County, Ga. USA.