I am very concerned with the recent threats that have been made in the county schools. It is my personal opinion that the code of conduct needs to be changed to state that anyone making a threat will be immediately suspended for 10 days and automatically recommended for expulsion — no exceptions.

Furthermore, I know you cannot give names due to threats being made by juveniles, but I feel it would be wise to make a public announcement after each incident stating that an automatic suspension has taken place and is pending further action by the school board.

I am also very upset to see the personnel report in a recent newspaper article. The school board made the decision to return one employee to 12 months who had been cut to 10 months. This is unfair to the remaining employees who have been cut as well.

Why is one employee being shown favoritism over many other employees who did not deserve to be cut? This certainly is not helping with staff morale, is it?

I saw in an earlier article that the finance director made a statement about closing the Cluster Springs Early Learning Center. I want to know why you all cannot leave the early learning centers alone; they are the perfect place for 4 year olds to begin their school careers.

They are in a building with their own age groups and have the opportunity to grow and learn vital skills to be in regular schools.

Cluster Springs Early Learning Center and South Boston/Halifax Early Learning Center are wonderful assets to our community. They both have very friendly and caring staff who give new parents a great sense of peace and comfort as children begin their first year of public schools.

Large schools are no place for 4 year olds. The large schools have bullying issues that are never fully eradicated or resolved. This does not occur in a setting such as the early learning centers and our 4 year olds deserve to start their school years in a positive environment.

You also should note that the school system owns the Cluster Springs facility and not the

South Boston facility so if in the future one needed to be closed it would make more sense to close the one you do not own. Save the one you do own as this building is in much better shape than the new buildings that have been built.

Parents, the school system is now taking applications for pre-kindergarten for the coming year. I urge you all to call now and schedule an appointment and fill both centers to capacity. You will not regret your decision. They will have a wonderful head start to academics.

I furthermore want it known that if you can waste in excess of $1.3 million on an energy program to only save $385,000 over 15 years why you certainly cannot leave the early learning centers alone and make a decision now to keep the early learning centers open for future generations.

Do we not have a maintenance department hired to take care of HCPS. We have wasted far too much money on efficiency studies, etc. in this school system. Our children and the employees have suffered drastically due to this excessive wasteful spending.

We have now wasted even more money on a facility study; and some of the suggestions being made are ridiculous.

I would like to remind the school board that we are not living on Rodeo Drive in California with thousands of millionaires. The poor people in the county cannot continue to have taxes raised.

You all are looking at the wrong areas to cut money. If funding is an issue, the cuts should start at the top with all upper level administrators.

I would like to encourage all residents to contact your local school board members and demand that they continue to keep the early learning centers open for years to come for the sake of our children and grandchildren.

Don’t let this issue come up in a secret closed session.

I also would like you to contact them and let them know some of the suggestions on repairs and additions to buildings are ridiculous. One in particular would be expensive renovations to the football stadium.

Remember this is not an academic necessity.

Dotti Womack is a Virgilina resident.