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Huckleberries: A cage match to decide schools’ direction?

Huckleberries knows how to settle the fight over the radical online education plan forced on Idaho’s schoolchildren by Superintendent of Schools Tom Luna and legislative accomplices last year – and subject to a November referendum. Stage a winner-take-all cage match between Luna and Post Falls instructor Ann Rosenbaum. In one corner, we’d have Luna, a former school board member who got his college degree online. In the other corner, Rosenbaum, a former Marine military police officer who escaped a car bomb in Iraq. New York Times reporter Matt Richtel featured Rosenbaum and two other teachers in an article about the controversy Tuesday. Rosenbaum told the Times: “This technology is being thrown on us. It’s being thrown on parents and thrown on kids.” In letters to see-hear-no-evil Luna and Gov. Butch Otter, Rosenbaum noted that she’s a Republican and a Marine, because, she says, it has become fashionable around the country to dismiss complaining teachers as union-happy liberals. “I fought for my country,” she said. “Now I’m fighting for my kids.” Put your money on Rosenbaum.

Crash survivors

There’s a back story involving those bloody eyeglasses found along Prairie Avenue and Wayne Drive in Hayden Wednesday. HucksOnline learned of the tale after reporting the discovery on the blog’s Scanner Traffic. Seems the glasses flew off instructor Chris Pickens’ face during a bike crash en route to Canfield Middle School Tuesday. According to sister-in-law Stacy Perry, Pickens was knocked unconscious and suffered a broken nose and other facial injuries in the crash. Perry figured the found glasses belonged to her brother-in-law when she read about them on Scanner Traffic. Later, a deputy delivered the spectacles to Canfield Middle School. As badly as Pickens was hurt, Perry tells Huckleberries, he was more concerned about the lost glasses.


Huckleberries is still wondering about that guy in the San Diego Chargers jacket on the corner of Highway 95 & Appleway in Coeur d’Alene Christmas Eve day – you know, the one holding a handwritten sign near Bank of America that said: “Bank of America robbed me. The bank stole my Christmas” … Yes, Bridgette Helstrom Lowry, that was your Coeur d’Alene neighbor mowing his lawn Thursday – on the fifth day of the new year. You’re correct in thinking “This is so not right” … Kindergarten teacher Jen Rude enjoyed the sunshine Thursday, too – even during playground duty. She blogs: “The kids were running and chasing and playing soccer. I walked around the playground five times and enjoyed the activity of it. It was lovely – well, as lovely as a walk in the sunshine can be while supervising 45 children … Quotable Quote: “Mitt’s winning percentage: .013%. My percentage .079%. He’s a piker compared to my titanic margin” – Coeur d’Alene Council President Mike Kennedy, who was re-elected to his council seat in 2009 by three votes after a court battle.

Parting shot

Coeur d’Alene City Administrator Wendy Gabriel admitted a billing mistake caused some utility bills mailed Dec. 30 to double and phones to ring off the hook at City Hall on Tuesday. Tongue firmly cheeked, Wendy said: “We apologize for the energy created and can confirm that the City’s phone system works very well.” Read: Yeah, she can hear you now.

Top stories in Idaho

Federal agency approves Idaho field burning rules

UPDATED: 12:41 p.m.

Federal officials have approved Idaho’s request to loosen field burning rules that backers say offer more flexibility to disperse smoke away from people but that health advocates say will lead to breathing problems for some area residents.