Tri-City Herald: Thumbs up to our hard-working teachers

Leading out

To Sharon Brown’s appointment on state Senate committees.

Senator Brown will chair the Trade & Economic Development Committee. She also will serve on the Energy, Environment and Telecommunications Committee, the Health Care Committee and the Ways and Means Committee.

All of these committees are bipartisan.

Of the committee she chairs Brown says, “We must work together — in a bipartisan manner — to create an environment that encourages job and economic growth, allows new and small businesses to thrive, and sends a signal to the rest of the world that Washington is open for business.”

It’s a good message. We’re looking forward to seeing that play out over the coming year.

National certification

To the 39 teachers in the Mid-Columbia who are newly certified by the national board.

There are many excellent teachers in our school districts. Some of those teachers recently earned the nation’s highest certification. Kudos to them for making that extra effort.

It takes years to qualify for this recognition.

Some of the districts make it financially appealing for teachers to put themselves through extra scrutiny, learning processes and cost to become certified. School officials say the improved student performance that comes from nationally board certified teachers is worth the cost of the effort.

In the end, it still is a lot of work. They deserve to be recognized.

Teachers champion our students and reward them for working hard and doing well. It’s time to turn the tables and give them a pat on the back.

Santa’s helpers

Many in the Mid-Columbia have donated their time and money to bring cheer to someone else. Employees at the Hanford vitrification plant pooled their efforts and donated $35,000 plus thousands of toys for the Toys for Tots program.

We’re sure that people who donate don’t need our recognition to feel good about their gifts. That satisfaction is reward enough. But let us say that we do appreciate the community’s generosity.

Blurred lines

To feds for defending their decision to impersonate the media.

Just because you can, that doesn’t mean you should. And there’s real doubt in our mind that the FBI was within their rights when they posed as the Associated Press to trick a suspect into loading location-revealing software onto his computers.

Last month AP demanded that the FBI strike the tactic from its playbook. Bureau Director James Comey earlier this month stood his ground — cautious but firm.

Comey said a ruse such as this ought to be rare and “done carefully with significant supervision, if it’s going to be done.”

We disagree. There are other ways to get information.

There is a clear line between the media and the government. The feds have stepped over that line. It is especially shameful that given the opportunity to cease the practice, the director dodged, instead.