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Truby’s Trojan Tidbits; March Madness

Thanks to those who took part in and attended our education summit last month. It’s a great format we hope will continue in upcoming months. Local success stories Our presenters, Virginia Carter, James Butler and Ryran Traylor, all did a fantastic job. Students need to hear and be encouraged by local success stories. A Lamar County education can take you anywhere you want to go. If you, as an adult, would like to take classes to help you as a parent, we have a tremendous class available to you. It’s called Passport to Success. It has been a big help to attendees and graduates already. Please contact Amy Goggins at 770-358-5891 for information or to enroll. The winter sports season is over and spring sports are in full swing. We thank our athletes for the sacrifices and commitments they’ve made to their teams and schools. It isn’t as easy as it used to be to withstand the pressures of the world and the demands of the classroom. What a great bunch of young people we have. No wonder our job gets tougher every year. Here are a few news stories that got my attention. There are still about 20% of teens who smoke. The complication for quitting is most chemical helpers are for adults, making it harder on them to quit. Speaking of tobacco, there’s a new line of smokeless tobacco called Snus. This new dip is tucked away so there’s no chewing or spitting. It is almost undetectable ‘“  but it’s still tobacco. Kids love it, especially those who test the waters of rebelliousness in school. Students hate being fat, divorce How many children will be born in the U.S. this year? Four million. Gastric bypass may be the cure for overweight children with blood pressure and diabetes problems. There are great results from recent studies of these operations. A poll of young children under age 10 had a couple of surprises: They said the worst thing in the world was being fat; second was having their parents split up. When asked what they’d do if they ruled the world, the number one answer was ‘ban divorce.’ Every year over 9 million kids end up in the emergency room because of accidental injuries and over 12,000 die. According to the CDC, many might have survived if they’d worn a seat belt, if there’d been a fence around the pool, or a childproof cap had been on the medicine bottle. Some places are now requiring HIV testing for teens as part of routine physicals. Our schools are busy preparing for the upcoming May 1 Relay for Life. I hope the rest of Lamar County is as excited as we are about working together, having fun and making an impact. Get a team together, or join one of ours. We will field five teams again this year. SAT prep Did you know Georgia ranks in the Top Ten in the nation for the number of students who take the SAT? It’s easy to look great when you just let the best students take the exam, but in Georgia more students are encouraged to take it in anticipation of where they’ll be someday versus where they are now. If you’d like some help with SAT prep, there is free on-line support at www.gadoe.org/SATPrepClass. There is another substitute teacher training class ready to begin Friday, March 6, at Griffin RESA. Please call 770-229-3247, ext. 244 for more information. If you’re interested in becoming a certified teacher and you already have a four-year degree, RESA also offers a Pre-TAPP program just for you. Call the number above or go to www.griffinresa.net. Cut off tube, enjoy reading Research is showing kids are growing up in homes with little emphasis on reading, learning or culture. Nielsen Media Research reports Americans ages 2-17 spend an average of three hours a day watching TV, which is way too much for any good student. In a study of 4,508 middle school students published two years ago, researchers found weekday TV and video games were strongly correlated with poor school performance. I’m sure cell phone use could be part of it, too. As a friend of mine put it, ‘There are too many screens in our kids’ lives, but the right ones.’ I hope you’re taking advantage of the opportunity to keep current with grades and school information through edline.net and our school system web site lamar.k12.ga.us. You can review EOCT and other state tests at usatestprep.com. Hopefully the weather won’t be a problem for us as far as school is concerned. However, please keep numbers for the media handy just in case. We’ll try to inform them all if a closing is necessary. If you get a chance, you can catch the superintendent’s TV show on Cable Channel 10 in town. Find place or people of peace When the madness of life surrounds or overwhelms you, the solution is to find a place or people of peace. May I suggest the Prince of Peace? May God bless your Mad March and beyond. Editor’s Note: The preceding article was written by guest columnist, Dr. Bill Truby

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