A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

Our schools, an anchor of support

Written March 15th, 2020 by Hasso Hering

COVID hysteria led to empty shelves, but schools are helping with food.

In response to the coronavirus outbreak, Oregon schools had no choice but to close. But now they are proving themselves to be the essential community resources they are. And this is especially true of the Greater Albany Public Schools.

Take a look at the way the superintendent, Melissa Goff, addressed the community on the district’s website on Saturday. You can read her complete message here. The main message is that the school administration clearly understands the effect on families of schools being closed through the end the month.

There is, first, the matter of pupils relying on meals at school. The district is solving that problem, as far as it can, by having set up a program of handing out, at 12 schools, free sack lunches at specific times around mid-day each weekday. The kids have to show up in person — little ones presumably with a parent or sitter — and this makes sense.

Children of any age up through 18 can get these lunches. They don’t have to be enrolled in GAPS. That’s an intelligent way not to let bureaucracy get in the way of helping kids.

What about their families? Well, the superintended says in her message, the district is working with Fish of Albany to provide nonperishable food. Families facing food emergencies can go to Fish, that great charity on Hill Street, and get help. “Let them know the District sent you,” the superintendent says. “They will provide you support.”

Some parts of the great Oregon Public have been acting like idiots in the grip of COVID hysteria by stripping the grocery stores of essentials for basic meals, not to mention hygiene. Where food is concerned, it is good to know that our school system and its leaders have kept their heads and are quickly and calmly taking steps to do what they can to help. (hh)

15 responses to “Our schools, an anchor of support”

  1. Gordon L. Shadle says:

    Acting like idiots? Or, is the hoarding behavior a practical response to uncertainty and fear?

    We are constantly bombarded by various levels of government to stay home, avoid people, and wash our hands for 20 seconds. No vaccine in sight.

    And in the time it took to wash our hands for the first time the fear mongering devolved into ugly political finger pointing.

    When the panic button is constantly pushed, no one should apologize for their survivalist reaction. Know your brain (amygdala). It’s natural.

    Fear causes me to protect myself and those I care most about first. Some are even idiots.

    For the rest of you, you’re on your own until the threat goes away.

    • Ray Kopczynski says:

      “Acting like idiots? Or, is the hoarding behavior a practical response to uncertainty and fear?”

      Nope! HH is correct, they’re idiots, pure & simple… Tell me, if you catch the virus, what good is a closet-full of TP going to do you?

    • Jennifer Stuart says:

      Mr. Shadle, while hoarding toilet paper may be an example of a natural response to fear and uncertainty, it ends up contributing to the panic. Your attitude is toxic. Your last sentence says it all.

  2. Bill says:

    For toilet paper dial 911
    (kidding of course!)

  3. hj.anony1 says:

    Amazing how they have stepped up …GAPS that is.
    Feed our kids.

    Now! 45 is a LIAR. He is. I DARE you to argue. Period

    How do we grow and heal past this?


  4. Gordon L. Shadle says:

    “45 is a LIAR.”

    Wow, a politician lies to us? Shocking! Next you’ll be claiming that you don’t lie.

    Society has been defining deviancy down for quite a while now. What was abnormal by an earlier standard is now normal. For example, consider veracity.

    Politicians lie because their tribe has a high tolerance for liars. My politician may be a liar, but he’s my liar. The shackles of morality are easy to shed when a member of my tribe is involved.

    We tolerate lying because we’re convinced our particular tribe is the protector of the common good. Our tribe is the only one concerned with growing and healing.

    Which badges of identity are you defending? Be honest.

  5. CHEZZ says:

    How do we grow and heal past this?
    One step at a time.
    Take care of yourself so you can assist others.
    Call the elders, those that are immune suppressive, or fragile.
    Read the news on internet twice a day.
    Go outside and watch the natural wonders, even in your yard.
    Get some sun.
    Listen to music without a news program.
    Tell a joke, share a fun memory.
    Read a book that takes you far and away.
    Work on projects.
    Love those you love.
    Be glad! You made it through another day worth living!

    • Ray Kopczynski says:

      And regardless of the final outcome of this event, the sun will still come up in the morning. :-)

  6. Dick Olsen says:

    Thank you Hasso for this good news. We are indeed fortunate to have such a caring GAPS staff and particularly Melissa Goff to step up at this time of worry and doubt.


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