Young and Homeless

"Children of God" moved readers.

Young and Homeless

Online readers comment on "Children of God," by Margaret Downing, December 22:

The power of teachers: This story brought tears to my eyes. I went to ten different schools and had a single mother who worked three jobs to take care of me and my siblings. I honestly feel like I would not have graduated had it not been for my teachers caring more than they are required to. To have someone believe in you, more than you believe in yourself, is a powerful thing. Kudos to Grissom and their staff; they are angels on Earth.

Grateful

Do something: At least these people care and are willing to do something about it. Sometimes the children are not so lucky; someone will just call CPS and turn the family in. Then the kids get taken away (or threatened with it, anyway) and put in foster care, causing a whole other set of problems.

Momazilla

Perspective: This is real, this is what matters.

Guest

How to help? This was a well-written and touching story. I commend the faculty and staff at Grissom for doing so much, especially considering they are doing it on teachers' salaries. I would like to know if there is an avenue for the public to send support to Grissom.

Wendy

Editor’s note: Offers of assistance for the children at Grissom Elementary should be directed to Principal Cynthia Smith at 713-434-5662.
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The Texans Question

Online readers respond to "Houston Texans — My Question to Bob McNair," Hair Balls blog, by Sean Pendergast, December 21:

Something different, please: The undermining of the Texans began with the belief that they could field a largely inexperienced secondary and still win, thus making Dunta Robinson expendable and allowing him to escape Houston via free agency. To make matters worse, all it took was the Cowboys game to show the rest of the league that the Texans could be bullied, that they would not meet physicality with a heavy dose of their own.

I don't know anything about Kubiak's demeanor in practice; he may be a butt-kicker. But I also know from experience that any organization takes on the character of its leader. So, the odds are that "Kubs" is too soft-spoken and not given to in-your-face confrontations with slackers, which is too bad, because the Texans need someone/something very different.

Marty

Hindsight 20/20: Everybody thought Dunta was an overpaid, egotistical, maybe-above-average cornerback that didn't deserve top five NFL money. Now our secondary is terrible, and everyone says we shouldn't have let Dunta go. Armchair GMs everywhere.

Armchair GM

Good news: Bob doesn't appear to be a meddling owner, like Jerry Jones.

Bad news: He is cheaper than Dr. John McMullen, which will be cemented if he doesn't buy out Kubiak at the end of the year.

Worse news: His apparent complete lack of competitive desire.

Bob's off-season and regular-season moves made Drayton look like George Steinbrenner, from Dante to Schobel, to the tailgate-charging money scheme. Yet Bob is just now being called out for it. Where was the rage to start the year?

Oh well, dimwit Bob appears to have used up his endless supply of goodwill in the span of four weeks. Good. Maybe it will light a fire under his ass to make some changes to his bland, uninspiring, banal, nondescript piece-of-crap franchise.

Hill

Seats will empty: He's blinded by his adherence to personal relationships — he wants in his heart for Kubiak and his co-workers to succeed and doesn't want the hurt of firing any of them. I respect that to a degree, but McNair just hasn't learned how quickly seats can become empty. He's in a profitable buffer zone right now that allows him to be overly patient, but once it's gone, he'll chop a couple years off his timeline for success.

TK
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Outed by a Teacher

Online readers respond to "Lesbian Teen Sues Kilgore School District for Outing, Harassing Her," Hair Balls blog, by Paul Knight, December 22:

No common sense: As a teacher, I know that questioning a student about their private relationships is wrong. I do not have the credentials that Newell has, although I am certified to teach in the state of Texas. My question is, with all those credentials, where is this woman's common sense? If these accusations are true, then I hope that Newell is reprimanded and sanctioned accordingly. Our jobs as teachers are to make sure that our students feel safe and secure in school and don't fear being singled out for any reason.

Becky

Fire her: Becky, I would agree with you except for your statement that Newell should be "reprimanded and sanctioned," unless by that you mean fired and never allowed to teach in Texas or any other state again. She sounds like a bully of the first degree and a vengeful person.

Charlesp

Another point: What people are failing to catch on to here is that if all this young girl alleges is true, not only is her girlfriend a statutory rapist, so is (potentially) the coach. This alleged relationship between the coach and the other girl should be investigated to see if she broke any laws. It doesn't matter what positions or credentials she holds; if she's a statutory rapist, what makes her any better than Jennifer Lea Burton or any other woman in Texas who had sex with a child? Burton is in prison for the next ten years, and if Newell had sex with the girl before she was 18, so should she also be.

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Rdcarrick
Rdcarrick

My name is R.D. Carrick. At one time, back when Rod Paige was first being moved into the office of secretary of education- the Houston Press's Margaret Downing brought a photographer to my home and thought about doing a story on the reverse discrimination that my daughter was enduring.

In the year 2000 my daughter who is white was zoned to Booker T. Washigton High School. She was beaten, sexually assaulted, constantly harrassed and fortunately (we thought) was moved to S. P. Waltrip Senior High School, much to the chagrin of principal Wesley. He tried to block her transfer because he refused to acknowledge the danger that my daughter was in while she was in attendance at his school.

Very soon after being moved to Waltrip- she was "busted" for "paraphernalia" while attempting to fit into her new school and finding new friends. She was taken to jail and thrown out of the school system even though she was never positive for drugs, and neither was the "paraphernalia" that was tested for drugs. All clean. But- still the difficulties.

The Press backed out of the article, probably for political reasons- and because the Press refused to help, my daughter had a very difficult time finishing high school. She has had a ridiculously hard time finishing high school, and a difficult time in college when she was at HCC. Which is HISD.

 
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