Coming to a School Near You? Critical Race Theory Aims at America’s Foundations

An emphasis on defining America’s history in terms of “social justice,” and Critical Race Theory (CRT) in particular, is popping up in our local public schools. For instance, the capstone assignment in a current ninth-grade English course at Newbury Park High School is aimed squarely at “an in-depth exploration of a topic that has something to do with prejudice, intolerance, and injustice (just like the majority of the literature in this course).” The assignment, which requires a parent’s signature of approval, guides students to explore a variety of “wrongdoing, attitudes…

Citizens on Mission to Boost Military Morale

American soldiers serving remotely overseas combat more than just enemies to democracy, the elements, and rough terrain; they often fight isolation, anxiety, and sometimes boredom.  Vietnam War veteran Rick McHenry understands these challenges and wants to help by sending a bit of “home” to American military members.  McHenry recalled the importance of care packages during his service, saying, “When I was in the field, I used to get cookies and letters from my mom. I saw other guys getting care packages with gum, candy, and playing cards, and they were…

A Boy and His Boats — How Skip Toller Started ElectraCraft At His Hometown Lake

In 1970, Westlake Village was still a rural area with wide-open fields of roaming cattle and a man-made lake in the center. The city was young but families were taking root, and the appealing lake lifestyle attracted many. One of those families included a young boy named Alex, who, along with his parents John and Leatrice and his sister Teresa, had just moved to a house near the top of the lake. As the lake evolved, so too did Alex, who went on to leave his own mark on the…

Celebrating a Free Nation on Flag Day

Monday, June 14, 2021, is Flag Day, an annual holiday that celebrates the history and symbolism of our American flag.  The official American flag was adopted by the Continental Congress on June 14, 1777, in the midst of the Revolutionary War.  The Declaration of Independence required the adoption of an American flag because each colony or special interest had its own flag prior to that time.   The origins of the Stars and Stripes are part of American folklore.  Many believe that Betsy Ross was the actual designer and personally sewed…

The Little Known Ride of Jack Jouett

Thanks largely to an 1860 poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, most Americans have heard of the “midnight ride of Paul Revere.”  Although romanticized by Longfellow, Paul Revere is a figure in U.S. history who should rightfully be celebrated.  But was there a far more obscure ride that may have had a greater influence on American history than Revere’s? By 1781, six years into the American Revolution, the British had overrun much of Virginia, the largest American colony, in an attempt to severely damage the Colonial war effort.  On the night…

The Beaches of Normandy: As Seen From Above on June 6, 1944

In 1939, Leonard “Len” Zerlin was 17 years old when his high school history teacher showed the class a newspaper article about a Civil War soldier who was still alive. “Wouldn’t it be great if this Civil War soldier with a wooden leg came to our class to tell us his stories about the Battle of Shiloh and the Battle of Gettysburg?” the teacher asked the class. Unfortunately, the soldier died before Len’s class got to hear him speak, but Len was enthralled with the notion nonetheless. Today, Len is…

7th Grader to Represent Germany in Softball Tournament

This June, seventh-grader Aurelia Ehry will compete for team Germany, honoring her mother’s nationality in The Triple Crown International Challenge softball tournament. In this unique, three-day softball tournament to be held in Colorado, players on each team share a common national heritage. Players must either be born in, or have ancestry in, the country they represent. Some of the 23 teams include Israel, Mexico, Netherlands, South Korea and Polynesia. Various national team and college coaches use the event to recruit players. Ehry says each player’s uniform bears the name of…

Local Students Commit to Prestigious US Military Academies

An Experience Unlike Any Other: (Above) Ryan Collier’s Admissions Liaison Officer presents Collier with his appointment to the Air Force Academy. The Conejo Valley has the honor of sending two 2021 high school graduates to esteemed military academies. Ryan Collier, a Newbury Park High School 2021 graduate, will attend the Air Force Academy, and Joseph deMartino, a 2021 Westlake High School grad, will attend the United States Military Academy at West Point. Both are excited to set foot on their respective academies, one as a cadet and the other as…

Other Options for School

Parents bidding farewell to public schools have more options for their child’s learning than they may realize. The Conejo Guardian gathered information on public school alternatives to aid parents in transitioning out of public schools. Private Schools Private schools are a popular alternative to public schools. One local example is Hillcrest Christian School. Hillcrest Christian School is an accredited, private Christian school with 403 students from preschool to 12th grade. Tuition ranges from $10,900 to $14,275. While teachers instruct students, Hillcrest fosters a family environment and offers many opportunities for…

What Could Possibly Go Wrong With “Immunity Passports”

The so-called “immunity passport,” being proposed by some as a type of identification and documentation of immunity to a disease, presents numerous problems, both scientific and civic. The very idea violates long-treasured notions of privacy and freedom and is based on shaky scientific evidence. According to The Lancet, immunity to diseases such as COVID-19 could be “proven” through a laboratory test which shows that a person has developed an immune response through an “immunizing event,” meaning infection or vaccination. But, as The Lancet points out, there are important immunological problems…