Letters to the Editor week of 12-22-11



To the Editor:

This is a time for accountability for all levels of education. The following items address the accountability, dedication, and commitment of Rhonda Pennington, Principal of Jeff Craig Elementary. Her leadership is shown by her implementations, and her partnership with the administrative team in the following areas and programs.

– She was building principal for two construction remodeling projects.

– She implemented Project Base Learning, math matters, for fifth, middle school, and high school students. (Attending with teachers a five day workshop). This is a corporation initiative for the next two years.

– Last school year, 2010-2011, 125 sixth graders were transferred to her building. ISTEP scores improved to 80 percent in math, and above 75 percent performance in Language Arts. Student attendance has increased two percent.

– Rhonda initiated I Pads for sixth and seventh graders. She has been recognized by Yancey Unger from the Department of Education. He will be returning to her building bringing other DOE representatives to observe and appreciate this technology.

– She has written and applied for an Innovation Grant for $1 million. This grant includes advanced manufacturing, robotics, project leads and I Pads.

– Teacher workshops include RTI, (Response To Learning), Accelerated Reading and Math, Zoo Phonics.

– During Jeff Craig Open House, she challenged students with a program called Read To Succeed. This program is for first through sixth grade students. Students read a book and pass a test on comprehension. To date, students have read 4,338 books.

– She is responsible for implementing new DOE guidelines which include RTI, I Read, online ISTEP testing, and transitioning to common core standards.

Candi Risk


Thanks, angels

To the Editor:

Switzerland County is so blessed to have given hearts for others during the bleak economy and loss of jobs. What happened last Saturday with the Angel Tree and food baskets was more than rewarding – it was simply a blessing.

The Angel Tree contained approximately 350 names of children this year. This community stepped up and took the angels off the trees and gave these children a wonderful Christmas. Donations were given by entities and individuals to help purchase items. Wrapping paper w as donated so that all presents could be wrapped. There is a relatively small group who makes this happen. They do this program out of love and expect nothing in return.

The Food Baskets served 200 families t his year. Thanks to Indiana Kentucky Utilities, 200 cases of canned goods were divided between the 200 baskets. Thanks to Belterra Casino Resort and Spa, each food basket had a 12 pound turkey. Thanks to the generous donation from Plum Creek Baptist Church, a gallon of milk and a package of dinner rolls were in the baskets. The Switzerland County Lions Club once again donated 200 packages of sausage. Vevay Super Valu picked up the turkeys and milk and delivered it to the fire department for distribution. Los Bandidos Restaurant did a promotion, and several boxes of donated food was also added to the baskets. The Switzerland County FFA donated fruit for each basket.

The money value of both the Angel Tree and Food Baskets was in excess of $45,000. What can be accomplished when we work together is amazing. Last, but not least, thank you to the individuals who make this all happen. There is no need to name them, because they do not do it for recognition – they do it to help their community in time of need. They are angels who will definitely receive more than they give for what they do.

Rita Sullivan