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Honor for a Teacher From Land of the Bard

November 02, 2002

Re "L.A. Teacher Awarded British Honor," Oct. 29: Rafe Esquith's kids are as wonderful as he says. Last August we were in Ashland for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival the same time Esquith was there with about 40 youngsters. The children, responsible for their schedules, tickets, spending money and behavior, are organized in groups of four. When one such group saw a festival employee accidentally tip over a container while transferring trash, they ran across the street to pick up the mess.

Anecdotes such as this mean more to Esquith than most of the awards. Too bad his own school district fails to recognize him. Esquith works from 6:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., during which time students -- even those not in his own class -- are welcome to come into his room for tutoring, to learn a musical instrument or to work on Shakespeare. He lives his motto: Work hard. Be nice. There are no shortcuts.

Jerry and Bonnie Just



So! Esquith is an Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire. What empire? Gibraltar, the Falkland Islands and Northern Ireland, where almost 50% of the population wants the British out of there. Americans should not debase themselves, and their country -- a republic -- by accepting these ridiculous "honors."

Joseph McEvoy

San Clemente

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