I’m writing to respond to Rebecca Gerhart’s response to the letter about WHS “fitness walks.” First of all, that this is a topic to be “insulted and outraged” about suggests a need for prioritization. My daughters have also participated in these approximately 2-1/2 mile walks. I don’t particularly have a problem with them, although they certainly don’t provide the aerobic activity that a well-run PE class would. My daughters found them fun, and since they got their actual physical activity from sports teams they’re on, I didn’t mind them taking a walk and eating some junk food with friends once a week instead of doing yoga or aerobics.
My younger daughter was in PE last year for both semesters, and did these walks once a week, weather permitting. I asked her if the walks were well supervised and she laughed. The details? Two PE classes would go together, and she said that meant roughly 60 students and two teachers. She told me no other adults ever accompanied them. They walked to Starbucks, where the teachers would stay and drink coffee.
The students were free to go where they chose as long as they came back to Starbucks at the appointed time. She said that normally meant they had 30 minutes to go where they chose, completely unsupervised, while the teachers stayed in Starbucks. A friend of mine works downtown and confirmed that these students are most definitely not supervised while they’re downtown.
As far as local merchants suffering if they don’t get students in their stores during school hours — seriously? While I’m sure they enjoy the extra sales, they shouldn’t be counting on them because after all, generally speaking, during school hours students should be ... in school.
As I said, I know my daughters enjoyed these walks and found them more fun and far less strenuous than doing the PE activity they’d signed up for, so I didn’t mind signing the permission forms.
But to suggest that the students are well supervised the whole time is unrealistic and untrue.
Lynn Kirkpatrick, Woodinville
Were I a resident of Woodinville, I would demand the city attorney file criminal charges of blackmail and/or extortion against Daniels, as his suit was filed solely “to inhance his pocketbook” as the extra $40,000 proved.
Jay Lyons, Bothell