EDITORIAL: Thumbs up, thumbs down

FresnoMarch 21, 2014 

Thumbs down to the State Center Community College District Board of Trustees. While hiring highly respected Bill Stewart as the future interim chancellor is a good move, the board has yet to tell the public why it forced former Chancellor Deborah Blue to retire. Nor has the board explained to taxpayers why Blue will receive her $225,000 annual salary and benefits until summer 2015. Blue had been the face of the district and its top executive. The public deserves to know the board's thinking for ousting her from the position.

Thumbs up to the Fresno Deputy Sheriff's Association for sponsoring Josef Martin's Honor Flight to Washington, D.C. Martin is a 92-year-old World War II veteran who was pistol-whipped, beaten and shoved into a closet during a home-invasion robbery last October in southeast Fresno. Martin served in the Army for nine years as a corporal and tank driver, and was decorated for fighting in several major battles, including the invasion of Normandy and the Battle of the Bulge.

Thumbs up to fifth-grader William Heng from John S. Wash Elementary School (Sanger Unified) and seventh-grader Leah Whitehouse of Computech Middle School (Fresno Unified). They were the winners of Fresno County spelling bees on Wednesday. Heng advances to the state Elementary School competition on April 28 in Stockton, and Whitehouse will compete in the state Junior High championships May 3 in San Rafael. Heng correctly spelled "premiere"to take the top spot. Whitehouse's winning word was "doggerel."

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