Friday, August 31, 2012

Disgusting school administration:  Tell 3-year-old deaf student named Hunter to use a new hand sign for his name as it looks like a gun

Harassing a little kid!  And a handicapped one at that

A school district has demanded a three-year-old deaf student named Hunter use a different hand sign for his name as the current gesture resembles a gun, his parents have claimed.

The Grand Island, Nebraska district reportedly has a policy forbidding children from bringing 'any instrument that looks like a weapon' to school.

School administrators claim Hunter Spanjer's name sign, which he makes by crossing his index finger and middle finger and then shaking his hands, violates that policy, his parents said.

While it is perhaps unsurprising that the sign for the name Hunter resembles a gun, supporters of the family have argued that it is not something the little boy will be aware of.

'Anybody that I have talked to thinks this is absolutely ridiculous. This is not threatening in any way,' the boy's grandmother, Janet Logue, told KOLN.

'His name sign, they say, is a violation of their weapons policy,' his father, Brian Spanjer, added. 'It's a registered sign through S.E.E.' - which stands for Signing Exact English, a sign language system.

The boy has slightly modified the S.E.E. sign by crossing his fingers, which his family claims makes it personal to the youngster.

Grand Island resident Fredda Bartenbach added: 'I find it very difficult to believe that the sign language that shows his name resembles a gun in any way would even enter a child's mind.'

Speaking to KOLN, the school district was not forthcoming with details into the incident. 'We are working with the parents to come to the best solution we can for the child,' Jack Sheard, Grand Island Public Schools spokesperson, said.

Yet he later claimed the issue was a 'misunderstanding' which had nothing to do with weapons.  It was 'not an appropriate thing to do in school' but Hunter was being asked to spell his name out by letters rather than using the sign, Sheard told the New York Daily News. 

Hunter's parents have set up a Facebook group for support and said that lawyers from the National Association of the Deaf could become involved to make sure their son can keep his name.  Howard Rosenblum, CEO of the association, told the Huffington Post it would be help the Spanjers with legal action if necessary.  'A name sign is the equivalent of a person's name, and to prohibit a name sign is to prohibit a person's name,' he said.

Hundreds of people have flocked to the family's Facebook group to voice their support and lambast the school district for its decision.

'We started this cause page to raise awareness of Grand Island Public Schools singling out of this little boy and attempts to try to change his name,' the family wrote on the page.

'I never realised that there were people who could be so ignorant about sign language and to treat a young child like that is unspeakable,' one commenter, Tracie Speed Setzer, responded.


Need $75,000 for a Sex-Change Operation? Enroll at UC Berkeley‏

Under the student health care plan at the University of California (UC) – Berkeley, students can receive coverage of up to $75,000 for sex-change operations and other related therapy, documents obtained on Monday by Campus Reform reportedly indicate.

According to the “2012-13 UC Berkeley Student Health Insurance Plan Benefits Booklet,”the publicly funded university will provide up to 90 percent of the controversial procedure, which comes out to about $75,000.

Also covered under UC Berkeley’s health care plan are students who would like to have “hormone therapy” and “gender confirmation (reassignment) surgery.” Better yet, the university will also pay for some “certain travel costs” associated with a sex-change operation because there are only a “limited number of providers” near the school.

The Leadership Institute’s Campus Reform has more details:

 *   The costs for a sex change operation alone, without additional travel costs, can exceed $50,000. Many private health care providers do not pay for these operations due to their cost and questionable health benefits.

*    The documents also reveal that the university health plan will cover up to 90-percent of costs [for] abortions.

*   Despite multiple inquiries the UC’s administration did not reveal the number of sex-change operations or abortions provided under the plan or when the plan was amended to include these controversial operations.

When students are accepted into the university, they are automatically enrolled in its student health care plan and must apply for a “waiver” to be exempt from buying into it.
UC Berkeley’s website describes its student health care plan as “a comprehensive major medical insurance plan, providing medical, counseling, prescription, vision and dental services.”
Funny, it doesn’t mention sex-change operations.


Thousands of British  students being 'hoodwinked' into taking courses for jobs they will never get

Armies of students are graduating from courses with qualifications for jobs that aren’t there.

Many are being trained in fields such as video games design, media, hair and beauty, forensic science and PR.

However, their numbers far outstrip the positions in the employment market. For example, colleges trained 94,000 students in hair and beauty in 2011, to fill only 18,000 new jobs.

Critics claimed young people were being ‘hoodwinked’ into spending thousands on college courses and university degrees that promise a dream career but in reality offer few prospects.

In contrast, there are dire shortages of trained staff in fields such as engineering and physics.

Research for a book on consumer society shows that 52 universities offer degrees in film studies, 37 run courses in cultural studies and 66 offer television studies.

In addition, 130 video games degrees are available but only eight are accredited by the industry body.

While 5,664 students were taking forensic science degrees in 2009, only 5,000 in total worked in the UK forensic science industry.

Figures also show that nearly 83,000 college students finished media courses last year at ‘level three’ – roughly equivalent to A-level standard – but only 65,000 vacancies were available.

In hospitality, leisure, travel and tourism, nearly 98,000 completed courses with only 43,000 jobs advertised.

In contrast, fewer than 40,000 students completed courses in building-related engineering – even though 72,000 jobs were available.

Steve McKevitt, a marketing expert who draws on the figures for his new book Everything Now, said young people were being failed by an education system which ignored the needs of employers.

‘The decision to supply the labour market with more graduates was taken without really considering what the needs of the labour market actually were,’ he said.

‘I do think it is a scandal that so many young people are being hoodwinked into studying for expensive degrees under the auspices that these qualifications are the key that will open the door to a dream career.’

Mr McKevitt argued that Britons increasingly measure success by their careers and how ‘interesting’ their lives are. Jobs in the creative industries are therefore attractive.  ‘The irony is that while it is very difficult to get a job in the creative sector, it is usually very easy to gain a place on one of the supposedly related courses,’ he said.

‘The key point is not that studying for these degrees is a waste of time. There is nothing necessarily wrong with undertaking a degree in PR, media studies, video games or any of the others…Nor does it mean that if you study one of these then you won’t be able to get a job in your chosen field.

‘The fundamental issue here is that these degrees do not necessarily lead to a job in the sector so if that is your only reason for studying them, then you are probably better off studying something else.’

The warning follows research by the Local Government Association earlier this year, which found that Britain is ‘teaching too many young people the wrong skills’.

The Department of Business said: ‘Graduates continue to do better than non graduates and we must ensure they enter the labour market equipped to succeed.’


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