Columns

The Whiteboard Jungle: Tuition is not main hurdle for most community college students

The Whiteboard Jungle: Tuition is not main hurdle for most community college students

What does $1,400 buy nowadays? One year of cellphone service with T-Mobile, one year of television with DirecTV, or one year’s tuition at a California community college — for 60% of students, that is. The other 40% pay no tuition.

A Word, Please: Speakers shall say whatever they will

A Word, Please: Speakers shall say whatever they will

History has never been my subject, a fact I attribute to my “cut to the chase” type of thinking. In history, the chase always goes: Dude One fights Dude Two for the right to control Thing A and, when a victor emerges, everyone has to live...

Verdugo Views: Community effort helped save Whiting Woods

Verdugo Views: Community effort helped save Whiting Woods

Back in 1979, a Whiting Woods homeowner went to a Glendale City Council meeting and handed over a check for $27,000.

Glendale High Cluster PTA: R.D. White among schools marking Founders Day

Founders Day is celebrated by PTAs across the country to recognize the legacy and commitment that PTA founders had toward bettering the lives of children through education, health and safety.

Start the Presses: Getting ready for election time

Start the Presses: Getting ready for election time

Remember when I said a few months ago that I wanted to shoot for at least a 25% turnout in our local municipal elections?...

A Word, Please: An editor's effort to correct a pet peeve

A Word, Please: An editor's effort to correct a pet peeve

Did you hear the one about the guy who went onto Wikipedia and deleted 47,000 instances of the phrase “comprised of”?

Learning Matters: Clark Magnet High students shine at Eco Challenge

Learning Matters: Clark Magnet High students shine at Eco Challenge

Motivation matters in education, so what we say about why students learn is important. What students think about why they study matters even more.

Intersections: Money made off suffering and desperation

Intersections: Money made off suffering and desperation

The news of three women who pleaded guilty to smuggling Armenian nationals to the United States from Mexico brought the...

Crescenta Valley PTA: Monte Vista Elementary to hold 'Father-Daughter Dance'

Monte Vista Elementary: The school's "Father-Daughter Dance" will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Friday in the auditorium. Contact the office for more information.

Read On: It's time for a heart to heart

Read On: It's time for a heart to heart

A quick check of the calendar tells us that it’s Valentine’s Day, the day commandeered by the retail floral, chocolate and lingerie industries and designed specifically to shame men into demonstrating their love for their mate by...

The Whiteboard Jungle: Appreciating the greatness of Nat King Cole

The Whiteboard Jungle: Appreciating the greatness of Nat King Cole

One of my journalism students wrote an opinion piece lamenting the poor quality of music today when compared to 30 years ago, an unusual yet perceptive observation from someone so young. She mentioned the increasing use of Auto-Tune, a computer...

A Word, Please: An eggcorn is also known as a mondegreen

A Word, Please: An eggcorn is also known as a mondegreen

When enough people use a word wrong, eventually it becomes right. That’s how every word in the language came to be. People started using a word differently than before (read: wrong) and it caught on and at one point started being right.

Verdugo Views: Reappearing books offer a view of PTA's history

Verdugo Views: Reappearing books offer a view of PTA's history

A stack of books detailing the beginnings of Richardson D. White PTA mysteriously reappeared at the school last fall, after having been missing for many years.

A Word, Please: Left dangling, a participle can lose its logic

A Word, Please: Left dangling, a participle can lose its logic

Danglers are an extremely important language concept. Not so much for writers as for jokesters. Danglers in writing and speech don’t necessarily hurt the reader. Often the message comes across just fine despite this dreaded error.

Learning Matters: Parent participation can lead to more student success

Learning Matters: Parent participation can lead to more student success

I think it peculiar that the federal Department of Education requires schools to establish meaningful parent engagement strategies as a condition of receiving federal funds, but the California Department of Education has called into question some...

Intersections: Traffic safety falls mostly on drivers

Intersections: Traffic safety falls mostly on drivers

When you leave Los Angeles, you need to relearn how to walk again. I mean that quite literally. After spending a lifetime in traffic, trying to survive our various commutes and relying on our vehicles to take us to the corner shop that’s just...

Glendale PTA: Schools closed twice this month

Roosevelt Middle School's monthly Coffee with the Principal will be held from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. on Feb. 18 in the school library. Parents can stay in touch with their children's activities and studies over a cup of morning coffee.

The Whiteboard Jungle: Measles outbreak is a sign of selfishness

The Whiteboard Jungle: Measles outbreak is a sign of selfishness

What began as a curious story of a small measles outbreak in, of all places, the so-called Happiest Place on Earth, Disneyland, has stretched to nearly 100 cases across eight states and into Mexico.

Verdugo Views: Union soldier shared war stories in his 90s

Verdugo Views: Union soldier shared war stories in his 90s

These days, stories about 90-plus-year-olds living an active lifestyle are quite common. But this 90-plus-year-old was active back in the 1920s, when life expectancy wasn’t as great as nowadays.

Start the Presses: Doing our part following the money

Start the Presses: Doing our part following the money

There are three clichés in journalism. Well, main ones. The first is: “If your mother says she loves you, check it out.”

A Word, Please: Ten common usages mistaken for mistakes

A Word, Please: Ten common usages mistaken for mistakes

Some people just love to correct others’ grammar and usage. They know it rubs people the wrong way. But they justify it like this: “I’m doing the poor ignoramuses a favor. I’ll endure their resentment for their own good. I&...

Intersections: Coverage of the Paris carnage lacked context

Intersections: Coverage of the Paris carnage lacked context

I was in Morocco when the Paris attacks took place, prematurely tarnishing the optimism I had for 2015. Amid the sights and smells of Marrakesh — perhaps the most colorful city in the world, where you share the crowded streets with motor...

Crescenta Valley PTA: 'Walk and Talk' event to be presented weekly

A “Walk and Talk” event will be held every Wednesday from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. at Crescenta Valley Park, 3901 Dunsmore Ave., La Crescenta.

Read On: Oscar acting nods show lack of diversity

Read On: Oscar acting nods show lack of diversity

I’m feeling a lot of the outrage here in Hollywood/Burbank/Glendale since Thursday’s announcement of Academy Award nominations — namely, that all 20 lead and supporting nominees in the acting categories are white for only the second...

The Whiteboard Jungle: Student's tenacity results in gig at Clippers game

The Whiteboard Jungle: Student's tenacity results in gig at Clippers game

I often encourage my student journalists not to feel fearful or intimidated when selling advertisements or speaking to adults for articles. However, it remains challenging for many of these young people to assert themselves. A small minority do...

A Word, Please: Grammar lists often forget to check the facts

A Word, Please: Grammar lists often forget to check the facts

If you search the Internet for the term “grammar mistakes,” you’ll get a lot of hits, many of them published lists that school you on the linguistic atrocities people supposedly commit every day.

Verdugo Views: The importance of the Armenian-American float

Verdugo Views: The importance of the Armenian-American float

One of my favorite ways to celebrate New Year’s Eve is by walking the streets of Pasadena. For several years now, my husband Glenn and I have made our way to Paseo Colorado for a late-afternoon movie and dinner and then a walk along the...

Glendale PTA: R.D. White Elementary celebrating 100 years

Glendale High PTSA President Megan Schowengerdt would like parents of college-bound seniors to know that school counselors are hosting a “Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) Fill Out Night” on Jan. 28.

Start the Presses: Getting ready for the area's 2015 elections

Start the Presses: Getting ready for the area's 2015 elections

This coming week, the Burbank Leader will unveil its much anticipated — or perhaps feared — election website. A companion site on the Glendale News-Press will launch shortly after the nomination period closes later this month for the...

A Word, Please: 'Graduate' is a grammatical free-for-all

A Word, Please: 'Graduate' is a grammatical free-for-all

National Public Radio recently asked listeners to submit their top grammar peeves.

Learning Matters: Life and politics can turn on a penny

Learning Matters: Life and politics can turn on a penny

When I was about 7, my older cousin took me on a penny hike. It was really a suburban walk rather than a hike, but the penny guided us. At each corner, we’d flip the coin. Heads we’d go right, tails left.

Intersections: Float celebrated the diverse Armenian story

Intersections: Float celebrated the diverse Armenian story

In 1915, a man named Moses (M.S.) Pashgian became the grand marshal of the Pasadena Rose Parade.

Read On: Things often not what they seem

Read On: Things often not what they seem

Well ladies and gentlemen, it’s a new year, when our thoughts turn to hope for a better world, optimism for a great 12 months ahead, resolutions to personally improve each of our lives, all of that stuff.

The Whiteboard Jungle: Exploring the life of Mantle during winter break

The Whiteboard Jungle: Exploring the life of Mantle during winter break

Writing a column right between the end of one year and the start of another is tricky. Typically, writers come up with “the list of the [fill in the blank] of 2014.” I thought about selecting the top education stories of the year, but got...

A Word, Please: Meaning can get lost at a certain level

A Word, Please: Meaning can get lost at a certain level

In September, the “Chronicle of Higher Education” published an article by linguist and Harvard professor Steven Pinker titled “Why Academics Stink at...

A Word, Please: A guide on how to write names of holidays

A Word, Please: A guide on how to write names of holidays

The new year, that is, New Year’s, is upon us. Soon after will come Presidents Day, also known as Presidents’ Day, then Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, Veterans Day, Xmas and a bunch of other holidays no one knows how to write.

Start the Presses: Wishes for the New Year

Start the Presses: Wishes for the New Year

For the better part of a decade, my friends and I have spent New Year’s Day the same way. We drive down to Dockweiler Beach around sunset to “Burn the Man,” a ritual that grew from being a silly tradition to a sacred one.

Learning Matters: Hearing advice at Sunday Lunch Program

Learning Matters: Hearing advice at Sunday Lunch Program

“Don’t drop out of school. Get all the education you can,” advised Johnny, when I asked him recently what advice he’d give a young person today. Johnny is a regular participant at the Sunday Lunch Program, hosted each week...

Intersections: Interaction with readers makes it all worth it

Intersections: Interaction with readers makes it all worth it

A few weeks ago, I spent a Saturday in La Crescenta on a local research trip for a future story. My day involved touring facilities with a group of about 20 people. Given my large digital recorder that I kept waving around as the tour took place,...

Glendale PTA: 'High School 101' slated for Jan. 12 at Glendale High

Students in the Glendale Unified School District are on winter break through Jan. 6, with classes resuming on Jan. 7.

Read On: Yanking 'The Interview' was inevitable

Read On: Yanking 'The Interview' was inevitable

Well, what a year, huh? Crazy stuff in politics, in sports, in entertainment. Really crazy in entertainment.

The Whiteboard Jungle: Students trade their front teeth for Mariah

The Whiteboard Jungle: Students trade their front teeth for Mariah

Nearly 70 years ago, a music teacher filling in for his wife’s second-grade class asked the children what they wanted for Christmas.

A Word, Please: A mistake is not quite the same as an error

A Word, Please: A mistake is not quite the same as an error

Not long ago in this space, I wrote about exceptions to a grammar rule. I added, “But none of those exceptions apply in modern publishing.”

Start the Presses: Can our communities spare a quarter?

Start the Presses: Can our communities spare a quarter?

As 2014 winds down, the lights go up, and the decorations sparkle. The children shriek with delight at the latest "Frozen" gear, and adults drink too much while giving one another silly gifts.

A Word, Please: Don't beat yourself up over reflexive pronouns

A Word, Please: Don't beat yourself up over reflexive pronouns

Dave in Elkland, Pa., wrote to me recently about pronouns ending in “self” — myself, yourself, and so on — and how annoying they can be at times. “‘Myself,’ in particular, drives me near distraction,”...

Learning Matters: Pageants can teach lessons outside of school

Learning Matters: Pageants can teach lessons outside of school

Last Saturday, I was at church for the opening rehearsal of the annual children’s Christmas pageant. I’ve spent the majority of my December Saturday mornings in this activity since our daughter’s first pageant appearance in the late...

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