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DonorsChoose gets it done

DonorsChoose.org is a U.S.-based nonprofit organization that allows individuals to donate directly to public school classroom projects. It was founded in 2000 by former public school teacher Charles Best of a Bronx high school. DonorsChoose’s mission is to make it easy for anyone to help a classroom in need, moving us closer to a nation where students in every community have the tools and experiences they need for a great education. Their team has vetted and fulfilled over 1.3 million classroom project requests.

My project at Elloree Elementary School is titled, “Will the Real Chopin Please Play.” I currently have 25 keyboards in my keyboard/piano lab. All of the keyboards are used daily.

Several of my promising students had asked if they could take a keyboard home so that they could get in more practice. This was a great idea but I did not have any extra keyboards. Students would have to come during breakfast or lunch to get in extra practice.

I turned to DonorsChoose to get extra keyboards. My project was fully funded and we gained four extra keyboards to be used as loaners.

DonorsChoose sends out your project request to donors, your friends and family. When a project is fully funded, they purchase all of the requested items and have them shipped directly to your school. Every donor gets a thank you letter from the teacher, photos from the classroom and a report of how each dollar was spent. It’s fantastic!

To view my project you may go online to www.donorschoose.org.

Beverly Parler-Rice

Music teacher

Elloree Elementary School

'Make our street safer'

I live on Heyward Drive, which is a residential neighborhood in Orangeburg. The people on our street like to walk up and down our street for exercise.

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However, it is dangerous to walk on Heyward Drive due to the excessive speeding of the vehicles that use it as a cut-through to Highway 178. The speed limit on the street is 35 mph, but the vehicles that use it travel as fast as 75 or 80 mph at times.

They drive dangerously close to pedestrians when they could clearly move to the center of the street to avoid them when there are no cars coming from the other side. We need law enforcement with radar on this street to slow down traffic.

I could see someone driving 40 or 45 mph as driving safely, but 60, 70 or 80 mph is extremely fast and dangerous. Someone walking or backing out of their driveway is going to get hurt or killed by one of these vehicles if they are not slowed down.

Speed bumps would also be a very effective way to slow down these speeders. I am appealing to Orangeburg County to take measures to make our street safer.

Wyman Oxner, Orangeburg

Not a beautiful day

What happened to Orangeburg and South Carolina? I left in 1962 for college and came back in 2014 to roads and ditches matted with roadside "snow drifts" of plastic bags, bottles and cans, broken glass in ditches, plastic lying in farm fields, used diapers.

On Shillings Bridge Road and Lake Edisto Road, there is a slew of garage. Have our roads and ditches become the new landfill?

Can we spend money to attract industries for better jobs in the midst of such blight? Have we sunk so low we defecate and urinate trash on our roads?

No one can say it's a beautiful day in South Carolina. Schools, churches, agencies, local and state legislators and citizens are needed to heal the chaos others have heaped upon everyone.

Arnold Bates, Orangeburg

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