Re: San Marino Faces Hard Choices (Times, Sept. 20).
It is always presumptuous to give advice, but having lived in San Marino for 15 years (1960s, '70s and '80s), I can't contain myself.
Basically, the situation San Marino faces is one of cultural priorities. Whereas in the past volunteerism, especially with youth groups, was the norm, today education and economic success are foremost.
Ideally, cross-cultural social events might help, but would the various groups participate? Perhaps, a neighbor-to-neighbor approach or a church-oriented one would be a small step.
As for a Platinum Card for senior citizens to attend schools events--a nice idea, but for San Marino? The seniors I know in San Marino are mostly affluent. Perhaps these seniors might volunteer in the schools as tutors, as was suggested. This is a reward in itself, as well as a way to get to know teen-agers. Neighboring Pasadena's SERVE Program offers after-school tutoring to all ages of schoolchildren. It has been successful in recruiting many senior volunteers.
San Marino's educational problems are facing many other communities in varying forms. The United States is a nation of immigrants. There needs to be compromise on the part of the newcomers as well as the old-time residents.