Tumwater School Board sets a standard for excellence

The OlympianNovember 25, 2013 

YAY: TUMWATER SCHOOL BOARD

The Washington State School Directors’ Association named the Tumwater School Board as one of 15 “Boards of Distinction.” The board was honored for its effective use of the Washington School Board Standards, which promote research-based governance practices. The WSSDA believes the standards lead to high levels of student achievement. The Tumwater board comprises Jay Wood, Bob Barclift, Rita Luce, Kim Reykdal and Janine Ward. Good job!

YAY: YEAR-ROUND MARKET

Good news for fans of the Olympia Farmers Market and the vendors who sell their goods there: It will stay open on Saturdays throughout the previously closed period of January through mid-April. The one-day weekly opening means extra income for the local vendors. About 25 have already signed up.

BOO: TAKING A SELFIE

If you don’t understand that headline — the word “selfie” in particular — then you’ll be happy to know help is on the way. The hip cats over at the Oxford Dictionary have voted “selfie” as the 2013 Word of the Year. You can find its definition in the Oxford Dictionary Online — an informal noun defined this way: “A photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and uploaded to a social media website.”

Just don’t expect it to show up in the Oxford English Dictionary any time soon. Those squares aren’t hip yet.

YAY: NO TWERKING

The word “selfie” beat out the word “twerking” for word of the year. And if you want to know what twerking means, you’ll have to look it up yourself. This is a family newspaper.

YAY: SEWER CONVERSIONS

What’s not to like about a municipal sewer project that comes in on time and under budget? The Thurston County Public Works department finished a two-year project in Woodland Creek and Henderson Inlet recently, converting 128 homes from failing septic systems to city sewers. The county project went so well, the department found enough savings to pay the $6,500 hookup fees for all the homeowners.

BOO: SECRET POSTAL DEALS

The U.S. Postal Service is understandably trying to mitigate its multimillion-dollar annual losses, but making secret deals with select businesses is not OK. Last year, the USPS made a sweet arrangement with junk mailer Valassis Communiciations — that company competes with newspapers for advertising fliers, so we’re a little touchy about it.

Recently, the Postal Service worked out another arrangement to deliver Amazon’s orders on Sundays in the Los Angeles and New York markets. Neither deal received serious oversight from the Postal Regulatory Commission.

As a result, the USPS is again competing with private enterprise without any transparency. Who know if these are good deals for American taxpayers?

YAY: A SHOT ON ALEX

From the Wish-I-Had-Said-That-Department comes this gem from Charleston, W.Va., meteorologist Jim Barach, of WCHS-TV … noting that Alex Rodriguez canceled his drug-suspension meeting with Major League Baseball because the star had the flu, the weatherman said, “Wouldn’t you know — that’s the one shot he didn’t get.”

YAY: THANKSGIVING JOKES

Everybody needs some lame jokes to tell at the Thanksgiving dinner table. Here are some suggestions:

Knock-knock. Who’s there? Norma Lee. Norma Lee who? Norma Lee I don’t eat this much.

Knock-knock. Who’s there? Odette. Odette who? Odette’s a big turkey.

Knock-knock. Who’s there? Gladys. Gladys who? Gladys Thanksgiving, aren’t you?

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