Tim W. Robinson, 56, of Greensburg, Indiana passed away on May 21, 2020. He was born on June 30, 1963 in New Castle, Indiana the son of D. Jewell Robinson Cupp. Tim worked for 20 years at STI and Hitachi in Greensburg.Survivors include: Wife, Christy Robinson; Daughter, Candice Robinson of Greensburg; Grandchildren, Jada and Braxtan Phillips; Step Father, Phil Webster of New Castle; and Step Sister, Barb Webster of New Castle, and Several Aunts, Uncles, and Cousins. He was preceded in death by Mother and his beloved schnauzer, Buddy.A Memorial Visitation for family and friends will be held on Friday June 12, 2020 from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm at Gilliland-Howe Funeral Home. Memorial contributions can be made to the Celebration Place, 2002 Moscow Road, Greensburg, Indiana 47240. Online condolences can be made to the family at www.gilliland-howe.com
Education Minister George Werner, at an Education conference in Monrovia last week, made the alarming revelation that he was about to “out-source” Liberian education to so-called “public-private partnerships”. The out-sourcing will begin with nursery and primary schools. For those who may think this a joke, think again: Among the “education stakeholders” who participated in the conference was the President of Liberia, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. Several very serious questions immediately arise. First, which “education stakeholders” attended the meeting? Most certainly the President, our national leader, who in February 2013 described Liberian education as being “in a mess.” But who else was there besides the international partners—the European Union, the educational NGO “More Than Me,” UNESCO, UNICEF, USAID and the World Bank? We understand that most or all of the universities were represented, though only few by their presidents. How many former Education Ministers besides Etmonia Tarpeh were there? Surely they could have been invited to give their reflections on the problems and the new proposal. Former Education Minister Dr. Evelyn Kandakai was invited, perhaps more so as Interim President of Cuttington University, but she was represented since she is currently on mission in Ghana. But no one saw former Education Ministers Othello Gongar andDr. Joseph Korto. Was Moses Blokanjay Jackson there? Trained in Math and Science education at three of America’s top 10 universities, he is considered an expert in that field. Was Liberia’s most accomplished and most prominent primary education entrepreneur there? Early in this administration she played a dynamic role in education reform as Chair of the Montserrado County School System (MCSS) and later also served as a Deputy at Education and once again currently chairs MCSS. But more important, she is the founder of several nursery, primary and middle schools in the greater Monrovia area. These include the Mary Laurene School of Excellence, a leading middle school near 15th Street, Sinkor. This educational entrepreneur, who is also a textbook writer and novelist, is a highly talented Liberian woman named Hesta Williams Katakaw. We think it was most unfortunate that she was not invited to the education stakeholders meeting, for she has a wealth of educational experience, especially where it really matters—nursery and primary—the foundation of education.But maybe the Education Minister did not need people like Hesta Kakataw, because the conference was probably not in search of new ideas on to how to fix Liberian education. The decision to “out-source” our schools had already been made; and the “stakeholders” invited were those who may have already been sold on the idea.Who might these ‘private partners’ be? What experience do they have with our educational system?What kind of textbooks would they introduce? Foreign, or local ones? The Ministry seems to have over the decades had very serious difficulty mobilizing and putting to work a committed and competent team of textbook writers. But surely this should not be that difficult. And what are the subjects for which we could create textbooks? They include English and Literature, Geography, History, Math, Science and Social Studies. The MOE has perennially had three main problems with textbook preparation, writing and production: first, the lack of a real and serious commitment to get the job done; second, the lack of a determination to recruit and seriously engage a committed crew of writers; and third, a persistent unwillingness to find the money and put it on the table to make it happen.Has MOE ever developed a program to train textbook writers?The Daily Observer has since the 1980s been urging MOE to bring back Civics into our schools to enable our young ones to learn a little more about their country, government, culture and languages. Do the stakeholders know anything about Liberian civics?We think it would be a grave mistake to outsource our education. Nothing would bring more confusion to the system than that. Who will be the teachers and what would they bring to the table? A lot of foreign stuff, written in foreign textbooks that are unrelated to the Liberian reality. Until our Education Ministry shakes off this inertia (apathy, lethargy) and gets down on the work it has to do, surrendering our education system to foreigners or so-called ‘public-private partners’ would, we are afraid, do us, our children and future generations far more harm than good. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
An unidentified big-box retailer could soon become part of the waterfront view staring back at Vancouver from the south shores of the Columbia River near Interstate five. Proposed as a $10.5 million substitute for the scorched remains of the Thunderbird on the River Hotel, the 125,000-square-foot retail store would be a single-story building with parking, according to an application submitted this month to the city of Portland. The proposal, entered by Portland-based architectural firm Baysinger Partners, did not include the name of the retail tenant planned for the tract. Stores that are out of the running so far include mega retailers Kirkland-based Costco, which said Friday it wasn’t looking at the site; and Bentonville, Ark.-based Wal-Mart, which just started building a new store off the next freeway exit south at Hayden Meadows. The proposed store also isn’t an expansion of Portland-based Fred Meyer or Minneapolis-based Target Corp., which recently opened a brand-new store at the Jantzen Beach mall across the street from the Thunderbird site.What about outdoor catalog-turned-superstore-chain Cabela’s? The company did not return calls, contributing to the mystery of the un-named project. Some say any development will be an improvement over the old Thunderbird, even if the vacant, 352-room hotel had not been burnt to a crisp in September. Over the last two months, backhoes have gingerly dismantled the structure and stacked the debris into piles at the site at 1401 N. Hayden Island Drive.The old hotel had been shuttered in 2005, unable to compete with an abundance of nearby accommodations. However, area retailers at the Jantzen Beach mall continue to favor the site as one that’s convenient to North Portland and Northeast Portland residents, and a huge attraction to Washington residents who aim to avoid the state sales tax, paid at a rate of 8.4 cents on the dollar in Vancouver.