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posted: 11/14/2011 5:00 AM

Thank you, D214, for thinking ahead

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Thank you for the article by Melissa Silverberg highlighting District 214's plan to equip each student with an iPad. With two kids in District 214 schools, we strongly support that initiative.

In a globally competitive society, it's this type of forward thinking that will help our kids in college and beyond -- where technologies like the iPad are gaining a strong foothold. This decision strongly affirms our decision to buy a home in the district, and is testimony to the Board of Education and teachers in the district that attracts and keeps families here.

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Regrettably, as with any expense, the narrow-minded naysayers among us will slither out of the woodwork calling this a waste of taxpayer money, a boondoggle or worse. They couldn't be more wrong, shortsighted, selfish or irresponsible. The world changes and moves forward. We can't be isolated from that. We are now competing with not only China and India, but also Brazil, Mexico, and a whole host of other countries that generations ago we never even viewed as competing for our jobs.

In some ways, those countries are already ahead of us making the investment in their kids and technology; an investment will pay off generations from now, long after the whiners on programs like this are gone. Their kids and grandchildren will be left to pay the price for their willful ignorance and ineptitude.

Just as those who came before us did, we owe it to those will succeed us to leave the district, and our country, equipped with outstanding teachers and tools that will facilitate a strong vibrant country. In short, we must pay it forward and properly equip them with not only the knowledge but also the tools to effectively compete in a global society, so that America continues to be a global superpower.

Gilbert Riley

Arlington Heights

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