Two lessons that endure

Published 7:44 pm Friday, June 17, 2016


With Friday being the last day of classes for Suffolk Public Schools, a few thoughts immediately come to mind.

First, the always important plea to drivers this summer that they be extra alert to the presence of children. They’ll often be outdoors — one hopes — playing on the sidewalks or in the streets. Driving a little slower in residential areas, for example, could save everyone much grief. Likewise, parents would do well to caution their offspring to be aware of cars, trucks, motorcycles and even bicycles.

Second, just because schools are closed doesn’t mean learning has to stop. By the time children and teens return to school, they’ve likely forgotten some of what they picked up the previous 10 months. Since a year-round school calendar doesn’t seem likely, there are other options. When and where possible, register your children for summer reading programs at the local libraries.

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Depending on your religious beliefs, vacation Bible schools are also excellent ways for children to have fun and learn at the same time. Find out if there are camps or other programs that offer more than canoes and crafts, and instead feature STEM- or STEAM-based activities. Science, technology, engineering, art and math are always in season.

Speaking of learning that shouldn’t stop, the third point is to offer congratulations to you seniors who have graduated during the past couple of weekends.

Most, if not all, of them have put in the time and effort to acquire a foundation of knowledge on which they can start building lives for themselves. This can be done through higher education at a college or training from a vocational school.

Both are valid ways to learn skills that can lead fulfilling careers.

But continuing education isn’t just for 18-year-olds anymore. Adults can also pursue knowledge for a different job or personal enrichment, and Paul D. Camp Community College offers a variety of different classes and programs that can help.

Drive safely and never stop learning. Those are two lessons that people of all ages would do well to heed this summer and for all the seasons to come.