Valley Breeze

The North Providence Breeze 09-11-2019

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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Page 10 of 67

NORTH PROVIDENCE EDITION | VALLEY BREEZE | SEPTEMBER 11-17, 2019 LETTERS TO THE EDITOR 11 Dear sports Mom and Dad: Cool it If you are the mother or father of a high school athlete here in Rhode Island, this message is primarily for you. When you attend an athletic event that involves your son or daughter, cheer to your heart's content, enjoy the camaraderie that high school sports offer and have fun. But when it comes to verbally criticizing game officials or coaches, cool it. Make no mistake about it. Your passion is admired, and your sup- port of the hometown team is needed. But so is your self-control. Yelling, screaming and berating the officials humiliates your child, annoys those sitting around you, embarrasses your child's school and is the primary reason Rhode Island has an alarming shortage of high school officials. It's true. According to a recent survey by the National Association of Sports Officials, more than 75 percent of all high school officials say "adult behavior" is the primary reason they quit. And 80 percent of all young officials hang up their stripes after just two years of whistle blowing. Why? They don't need your abuse. Plus, there's a ripple effect. There are more officials over 60 than under 30 in many areas. And as older, experienced officials retire, there aren't enough younger ones to replace them. If there are no offi- cials, there are no games. The short- age of licensed high school officials is severe enough in some areas that athletic events are being postponed or canceled – especially at the fresh- man and junior varsity levels. Research confirms that participa- tion in high school sports and activi- ties instills a sense of pride in school and community, teaches lifelong lessons like the value of teamwork and self-discipline and facilitates the physical and emotional development of those who participate. So, if the games go away because there aren't enough men and women to offici- ate them, the loss will be infinitely greater than just an "L" on the score- board. It will be putting a dent in your community's future. If you would like to be a part of the solution to the shortage of high school officials, you can sign up to become a licensed official at Otherwise, adult role models at high school ath- letic events here in Rhode Island are always welcome. KARISSA NIEHOFF Executive director of the National Federation of State High School Associations TOM MEZZANOTTE Executive director of the Rhode Island Interscholastic League Child Care, Development Block Grant funding make a huge difference in quality education I am chief education officer of The Children's Workshop head- quartered in Central Falls. We operate six schools and serve infant, toddler, preschool, pre-K, and school-age students across the state, largely from families who are eligible for child care subsidies. When Congress increased funds via the Child Care and Development Block Grant, the state of Rhode Island invested those funds into ensuring better quality for all our children. At The Children's Workshop, these increased rates were especially beneficial for our infants and toddlers. Our school in Warren felt the biggest impact. Because of the increase in funds, the school is able to accept more low-income families and provide high quality child care to many more children who may not have had equitable access to it otherwise. Research demonstrates that high quality early education is associated with better educational and health outcomes for children. These CCDBG increases were vital to early childhood education in the state of Rhode Island, and are an excellent starting point. However, we still have work to do. Currently, the House has allotted $2.4 billion for CCDBG. That is more than $5.4 million just for Rhode Island, which trans- lates to high quality care for about 530 more children. We need Sen. Reed to fight for this funding. Our children and our future are count- ing on it. JULIE BOUTWELL The Children's Workshop IN BRIEF Blood drive Sunday at St. Thomas Church PROVIDENCE – A blood drive, in memory of baby Francesca "Frankie" of North Providence, will be held on Sunday, Sept. 15, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., at St. Thomas Church, 65 Fruit Hill Ave. Those donating should bring their driver's license and another form of identification. Visit to make an appointment, sponsor code 0593. The drive is sponsored by the Knights of Columbus, Council 11684. Firefighters invited to farewell luncheon NORTH PROVIDENCE – Bob Lincoln is organizing a farewell lunch open to any firefighters who served during the 45-year history of the cur- rent fire headquarters, which was replaced last month with the new safe- ty complex up Mineral Spring Avenue. The Saturday, Sept. 14 event starts at 1 p.m. and will feature a catered lunch on the apparatus floor. "This is the last chance for firefight- ers, past and present, to see the old building before it is re-purposed," said Lincoln, who was inspired by the Fire Department in Hyannis, Mass., which held a similar event earlier this year. which coincided with the 30th anni- versary of the end of the last duty shift of call firefighters, and the start of the full-time career department in North Providence. Tickets are $15 per person. Email for reserva- tions as soon as possible. Here is an addition to our September Birthday Club: SEPT. 25 Ryan Elizabeth Sabbagh, Happy 3rd Birthday! Love, Papa, Nana, Auntie and Uncle THE BIRTHDAY CLUB Place your classified ad online at Letters to the Editor Letters to the Editor are welcome from readers. Please: • Limit to 500 words. Longer letters may appear online only. • Letters on local or state topics and issues will take precedence over those on national issues. • No more than one letter per person every 8 weeks, please. • All letters must be signed and include a hometown. Send by e-mail to:, or mail to The Valley Breeze, 6 Blackstone Valley Place, Suite 204, Lincoln, RI 02865. 9 Powder Hill Road (Off Rt. 123) Lincoln, RI 401-728-5903 Open Mon-Fri 8 a.m.-5 p.m., Sat 9 a.m.-4 p.m. VISIT OUR FACTORY OUTLET STORE! Making a Difference in the Lives of Others 610 Smithfield Road North Providence, RI 02904 (401) 353-6300 Sub-Acute Rehabilitation, Long-term Care, Secure Dementia Care and Hospice Services Physical, Occupational & Speech Therapy Private and Semi-Private Rehab Rooms Admissions 24 Hours ~ 7 Days per week We accept: Medicare, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, United Health, Neighborhood & Medicaid Hopkins Manor

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