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Our Readers Write: District should keep drug-sniffing dogs

November 25, 2010

Thank you for your Nov. 18 article titled "Board to review, revise, search policies." The drug-sniffing dog program is used in many other schools and was overwhelmingly supported by parents last year in an effort to help keep drugs off our La Cañada High School campus.

I recently traveled by plane and felt helpless anxiety as I watched my purse containing all my credit cards, money, personal documents, and other belongings disappear on the conveyor belt to be X-rayed and examined by strangers and, yes, maybe even sniffed by dogs. I was separated from my belongings without any reasonable suspicion — yet I had to comply, for the safety of all. These measures are not extreme, they are necessary.

Most of us work very hard for our schools. We contribute our time and money to maintain our high educational standards. I am saddened that our cash-strapped school district has to spend money to defend itself from accusations such as these.

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The dog program does not target or discriminate against anyone. It benefits every one of our students by serving as a deterrent. It is for the safety of all. I do not want drugs or drug dealers on our school campus. I want the dog program to continue and most parents I know feel the same way.

Mayra del Valle

La Cañada

Kids should not be extreme adventurers

I would like to lend my voice to the dialogue around the Valley Sun article, 'In Theory: Should kids break records?" (Nov 18). This year has seen several instances of children doing extreme adventure or extreme sport and raises some interesting questions about the role their parents play in it.

Two months ago, Jordan Romero, 13, of Big Bear, became the youngest person to climb 8848 m Mt. Everest. He became a cause célèbre while also earning the enmity of some who believe the risks of climbing such a peak are too great for a child to take on.

It is a statistical fact that 8 climbers die for every 100 who summit Mt. Everest. Those celebrating Jordan's conquest of the mountain would likely be whistling a different tune if he had died in an avalanche, in a fall, of exposure, or a high altitude-related illness.

The next media darling was 16-year-old Abby Sunderland who was adrift for 20 hours in the southern Indian Ocean while attempting a solo sail around the world. Waves as tall as a three story building disabled her boat leaving it with a broken mast and sail dragging in the ocean.

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