Clarification: In last week’s issue, columnist T. Lee Brown endorsed school board candidate Mandee Seeley. Her page 2 op-ed column quoted Courtney Snead, interim director of Sisters Park & Recreation District, Seeley’s employer, who described some of Seeley’s work. To clarify: Neither SPRD nor its director endorse any candidate for public office. The endorsement came from the columnist alone.

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To the Editor:

I want to give a shout-out to our SHS student drivers! They continually impress me in their consistency to use their blinkers. I drive to the HS at least once a day (sometimes 3x) and am surprised daily by their blinker use as they pull IN to the parking lot, drive OUT of the parking lot and all around town.

It’s true. Safety (physical AND emotional) is higher on the list for iGen (Internet Generation). Born in the late 1960s, I’m a GenX who is fascinated by the book called iGen (Thank you G. Greaney for the book recommendation!). Author, Jean M. Twenge, PhD., refers to those born 1995 to 2012 as iGen. Unlike Millennials, they don’t remember a time before the Internet (and this, specifically, changes this population). Twenge has done extensive data analysis from more than 11 million respondents over multiple decades (since 1976).

One thing she does point out is that fewer 16-year-olds are wanting to obtain a driver’s license — because “driving” might not be safe and risk-taking is at an all-time low with this generation. That alone is intriguing to me. My 16th birthday was defined by my trip to the DMV to get my license.

If you are raising an iGen, employing an iGen (or ever plan to leave the house), you need to check this book out (or download it if you ARE an iGen). You’ll be surprised at data graphs of the iGen’s unique qualities of how they spend their time and money, how they behave (physical interactions with others outside of their family, etc.) and their surprising attitudes toward religion, politics, employment, drug use, work ethic, mental-health issues, etc.

In the words of Twenge, “As this new group of young people grows into adulthood, we all need to understand them. Because where iGen goes, so goes our nation—and the world.”

Apologies if you have this book on hold...I’m racking up a generous donation to our fabulous Deschutes Public Library... I keep giving away my purchased copies.

Happy reading and keep on using your blinkers (iGen or not)~

Becky Aylor


To the Editor:

The continued success of the Sisters School District depends on fiscally responsible, committed leadership. That’s why David and I are voting for Don Hedrick for the Sisters School Board.

I had the opportunity to witness Don’s commitment and fiscal responsibility first-hand while serving as his vice chair on the School Board. Don was diligent about researching issues and building critical relationships while collaborating on the board agendas.

As chairman of the board for many years, Don ran a respectful and well-organized meeting. He expected his fellow board members to come prepared on all agenda items, particularly “action” items. Don is a listener and was always open to new ideas and innovations, as long as they were fiscally responsible.

Don enjoys knowing the students, parents, teachers and staff and still attends numerous SSD events. He continues to attend school board meetings even now so he is current on all board business. Don will hit the board running with his wealth of experience, expertise, and passion because education is his life work.

Thank you, Don Hedrick, for serving.

Kay and David Grady


To the Editor:

In 2011, my wife Sarah and I packed up our four children and made the trip over the mountains from the valley to call Sisters our home. The number-one driving force to move from Salem was the search for a school system that we could embrace for the long haul.

We have become loyal supporters of our schools. So, it seemed a perfectly reasonable evolution to throw my name in the hat eight years later for a school board position, especially after several people encouraged just such a thing. I dropped my application in about 30 minutes before the entry deadline and called the county clerk from the high school track meet that I was at in Prineville to give her my debit card number for the $10 fee.

Only after that did I really begin to delve into the nuts and bolts of what serving on a school board might entail and, specifically, what Position 3 on the Sisters School Board would mean.

That led me to call and then eventually sit down with Jeff Smith, the incumbent in that position. We met for lunch at the Open Door. I must say that a delicious meal and two hours later I found myself absolutely taken by Jeff’s vision and candor. His commitment to local public education is exemplary and his hopes for the future of our schools mirrors my own.

I came away from that meeting as well as several follow-up phone conversations convinced that he has been, and continues to be, the right person for the job. His experience in and around our schools as a coach, parent, grandparent, and school board member are without equal. In our short time together, I found his ability to listen to differing views and discuss controversial ideas impressive. I have reviewed some of his prior accomplishments working on challenging issues and find that to be equally impressive.

Because of the rules and regulations that surround elections, the timing of my application, and my subsequent discussions with Jeff, I remain listed on the ballot for this election. It is, however, without reservation that I offer my complete support for Jeff Smith in the upcoming local election for Position 3 of the Sisters School Board and recommend that others do the same. He has my vote as the most qualified candidate.

David Thorsett


To the Editor:

Mothers’ Day! The day that evokes every emotion from reverent gratitude to guilt, grudging obligation, grief and regret! When I researched the various origins and motives of promoters of this day, I was saddened by the current commercial profiteering via flowers, gifts, brunches and cards overshadowing its inception. It is not a matter of objecting to the honoring of mothers, but rather to the limited definitions framed by our card and gift selections!

When I think of mothers, I think of the idea of nurturing, guiding, supporting and loving in that title. But then I think of the teachers, nurses, caregivers, mentors and leaders of all genders who have mothered thousands of others, children and adults, as well as the scores of foster children of women incapable of fulfilling the definition, I ache for our narrow focus.

I weep for the women who have wanted children and could not have them for a number of reasons beyond their control, or the many women and men who have lost a baby or a child and must suffer through this yearly reminder.

What I really wish to do is change May 12 to a day for showing appreciation for all those we know, regardless of gender, who fit the nurturing definition and live it daily!

So to all of you who fit the category but are omitted from affirmation, I wish you a heartfelt Happy Mothering Day, my idea of a new definition! Please know that you deserve the universal hug and honoring and are appreciated by many of us!

Wendie Vermillion