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Off the News


Let’s not test whether school furloughs are OK

Kudos to all the public school teachers who deserve a slice of good news, and to the thousands of their students who, judging by last week’s improving test scores, have been better at learning their lessons.

Now, let’s see if the rest of us have learned ours.

The right takeaway from this result, of course, is not that we can put public schools on furlough with impunity. Keep in mind, the schools have been laboring away at No Child Left Behind for many years, so it’s a relief but not illogical that a single year of furloughs would not siphon it all away.

Just how long it would take to negate this progress is unknown, but let’s not continue down the furlough path to find out. Some things we simply shouldn’t test.


A sign of modern times: Rising parking costs

Well, it had to happen. One of the last great bargains in Waikiki — the 25-cents-an-hour parking at the Honolulu Zoo — has succumbed to the inevitable march of progress.

New pay stations at the parking lot must be fed $1 per hour. Yes, you can use a credit card or smart cards as well as old-fashioned coins. You can even replenish them through your cellphone. Extracting more of your money has never been so convenient.

Of course, some would argue that $1 an hour is still pretty cheap, especially for such a premium location. This is true. It’s no big thing. It’s just a little one.


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