Dear Readers: Today’s Sound Off is about America’s educational system.

“Dear Heloise: As schoolchildren go back to their desks and books, I’m reminded of how difficult it is to teach a curriculum today. In other countries, children are taught to respect their teachers. I don’t see it here in the United States. We’ve taken away all authority from our teachers, blamed them if a student fails in class and made teaching an unattractive profession.

“Currently, we are facing a teacher shortage in some areas of the country, especially in poor districts. Some of the worst shortages are in subjects such as special ed, math and computer science.

“What can districts do to attract better teachers? They can improve pay and benefits, offer additional autonomy, and provide support and mentoring in their school districts. Perhaps the most important part, however, is parental support. They need to get behind the teacher and adopt a ‘zero tolerance for bad grades and bad behavior’ from their children, and that starts in kindergarten.”

Karen in Wisconsin

Dear Readers: Getting married soon? Make sure to consider these financial issues:

● Discuss and agree on how many children to have, where to live, how finances will be handled and career choices.

● Have your wills done.

● Make sure your future spouse is on all banking and investment documents.

Dear Heloise: There is a new scam involving an email that goes to someone and says:

"This is to inform you that your request on: 09/06/2019 2:07:11 p.m. to remove your account from (name of your Internet carrier) server has been approved and will initiate in one hour from the exact time you open this message. Regards.

"ignore this message to continue with email removal or

"If this deactivation was not requested by you

"Please reply us."

You can tell by the way it's written that it's bogus. This is a way for a scammer to get you to click on a site that will enable them to access your computer to gain information on you. Go ahead and ignore it, but DON'T click on the address you are given.

Norah Y., Providence, R.I.

Dear Readers: Have you ever wondered why most electrical plugs have one blade that is wider than the other? This is called a polarized plug, and it’s a safety feature to lower the chance of electrical shock.

The plug will go into an outlet only one way. Don’t force it to fit another way.

Heloise’s column appears six days a week at Send a hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000, or email it to

2019, King Features Syndicate