SC doesn’t invest in public education

How do you build a life well lived, a life that gives the individual a shot at living their best, achieving their full potential? It goes without saying that life’s basics (food, clothing, shelter, love and belonging) are essential. Beyond that, the vital building block is a robust, quality, public education for every child K-12.

The strongest foundation combines the ability to read and comprehend, calculate numbers, and communicate clearly through writing, with the skill of critical thinking. It is appalling that South Carolina is committed to providing only a “minimally adequate education” to our children, one that almost guarantees they are not going to succeed.

Education is the key that unlocks the door to dreaming, to reaching, to hoping, to achieving. It is the path to improving the mental and physical health of our population, protecting our environment, and attracting employers to our state. Public education is an investment in our state that pays off many times over.

So, why do South Carolina public school teachers have to fight for every penny for themselves and their students every single legislative session? We should ask our Governor, Henry McMaster, and our State Representative, Shannon Erickson. They seem determined to underfund our public education system, with one major outcome being South Carolina having reached unprecedented heights with school districts reporting nearly 1,063 vacant teaching positions in Sept./Oct. 2021.

Dreaming, reaching, and achieving will never be a reality for many of our children. Could it be because, as Nelson Mandela said, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world?”

– Barb Nash, Beaufort

Dandridge’s articles important to educating veterans

I would like to share my deep appreciation for the military articles written by Larry Dandridge. In particular, I am impressed by his coverage of the VA.

As we all know, there are many veterans that have not taken advantage of all the services they are not only entitled to, but deserve from VA care. As a 24-year employee of the VA and prior Mental Health Chief in Charleston, I can think of no better system that can provide wrap-around services for our national heroes.

Dandridge’s articles are an important component of educating our veterans of all the services offered and how to access those services. They are truly unique in that he can speak from his own experiences.

My hope is that these articles may lead to engagement in care with any struggling Veteran who needs our help. Thanks so much for endorsing these articles.

– Dr. Hugh Myrick is the Chief Mental Health Officer for the VA Southeast Network, VISN 7, and Professor of Psychiatry and Director, Military Sciences Division at the Medical University of South Carolina.

Dandridge’s articles make difference in veterans’ lives

Mike (McCombs) — as a retired military officer and a member of the Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) Charleston Chapter, I am confident you are making a difference in the lives of many veterans in the coverage area of (The Island News) by including the very informative articles that Larry Dandridge contributes to your newspaper.

(In our January 2022 newsletter) we included one of Larry’s articles for our members. Larry has a great deal of information in the articles and we have used them on both our chapter website as well as in our newsletters.

Our reach of our membership in Charleston, Berkeley and Dorchester counties is only around 260 members which have been commissioned officers in one of the branches of the military as well as surviving spouses – but your reach is much greater and certainly in an area of the state where you also have a strong concentration of active and retired military persons of all ranks.

His articles are a great contribution to your readers, and I thank you for publishing his work. As you know, Larry is a decorated Vietnam military veteran and is heavily involved with the RHJ VA Health Care System and a Fisher House Charleston volunteer Good Will Ambassador as well as an award-winning author.

– Brig. Gen. Ernest D. Brockman, Jr., U.S. Army (Ret.) is the President of the Charleston MOAA Chapter, and Col. Beverly R. Brockman, U.S. Army (Ret.) is the 2nd Vice President of Membership of the Charleston MOAA Chapter

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