From RH Jones, May 10, 2007
Amanda Litvinov, Editor, This Active Life
1201 16th St., N.W., Suite 10
Washington, DC 20036
Dear Editor Litvinov:
Re: More False Idols.
In the May 2007 NEA Retired Magazine: This Active Life “Talk to Us,” Richard Birch wrote in part: “TAL is holding her up as some sort of example or hero. Something is wrong here.” I would like to add that: Something is wrong once again! A full page 19 was given to two retired Akron, Ohio administrators, Dan Hayes and Carl Dimengo who must be laughing at This Active Life magazine. In TAL, reporter Rina Rapuano’s article: A Home Run, They may have hit A Home Run physically but the two struck out mentally. They both play for the White Hat Management (WHM) Company. David Brennan, CEO. WHM is the foremost charter school company in the whole of Ohio. In the article, the logo is clearly shown in the photo on Dan Hayes’ baseball uniform shirt. By their playing baseball for WHM, I wonder if Hayes and Dimengo realize that they have unwittingly advertised WHM. And that by doing so, they have helped “short change” their Ohio STRS of which they are both retired members. Most certainly, they can find another team to play for.
WHM has caused untold damage to Ohio’s State Teacher’s Retirement System (STRS) by siphoning off millions of tax dollars to run several for-profit private schools. We presently have fewer public school teachers paying into our retirement system so there now are fewer employee/employer contributions to our STRS. This is at a time when there has been Enron, WorldCom, etc. and huge cuts in funding for retiree health care and other retiree benefits.
As a consequence of WHM, active teachers have been hurt as well. Since charter schools, public school districts have been “short changed” as funds are diverted into entrepreneurs' pockets.
The NEA and NEA-R has been consistent in its fight against charter schools, vouchers, etc. It seems that the TAL editor and reporter should be more careful as to whom they report as idols. You have my permission to quote me in full or in part. Please print the heavy black typed sentences in the “Talk to Us” of the next Active Life issue.
Robert Hudson Jones,
NEA-R Life Member & retired Akron, Ohio teacher