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March 14, 2001 PROBE

March 14, 2001

QUESTION: KKSE, the Valley's all-sports radio station, has changed its call letters and its format to become an all-country music station. This is the station owner's right but I think the owners owe the Valley's sports fans a full explanation. — Sports Fan, Imperial County

How about one word — "economics"? Is that explanation not full enough for you?

OK, not enough people bought ads to support the format, said General Manager Dennis Goodman.

Goodman also is chief executive operating officer of Commonwealth Communications and owns a piece of that company, which owns KKSE.

He said not enough people were listening. The Imperial Valley does not have enough people to support an all-sports broadcasting niche.

That's why Commonwealth dropped its all-sports call letters, KKSE, to revert to the more familiar KROP and country music. The change came late Friday night or early Saturday morning.

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There was a "big hole" for a classic country music station in the Valley, said Goodman.

Classic country is the old stuff with artists like Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton and Hank Williams Sr. That's exactly the niche profitably occupied by KROP for decades.

KROP will continue to broadcast Dodgers baseball, NFL football and local high school games, Goodman said.

QUESTION: My granddaughter attends Frank Wright Middle School in Imperial. She got the results of her proficiency tests the other day.

She had 90 percent on every test but mathematics. She didn't take the math test because it was not offered. Nevertheless, her score showed a zero for the test. That brought her average down to 66 percent.

Since 60 percent is passing, why is this a big deal? Many students didn't do as well as my granddaughter and they also received a zero. For many their average could be below passing.

The school could easily have made the proficiency letter reflect the actual average. It could have explained the math test still had to be taken and passed with 60 percent. — Grandad, Imperial

Imperial Unified School District Superintendent. Barbara Layaye said one middle school teacher did not require the more able students to take the math test.

"Since they were doing fine in math, he decided he didn't need the test," said Layaye.

The teacher didn't know the computer would read the absence of a test result as a zero. The test averages will be corrected, she said.

It doesn't matter, said Layaye. The tests were given to provide parents with an idea how their kids were doing in the first quarter. That's all it does. Your granddaughter's grades will be based on her daily work, not the test, Layaye said.

ON CANDID CAMERA — Please put in PROBE that the next thief who comes after my potted plants had better smile. My landlord just installed a surveillance camera in front of my door.

I plant flowers in pots and they look really nice until thieves steal them, pots and all. The last time they stole three pots. — Pot Gardener, El Centro

OK, we did it. We didn't give your address because anybody who would steal a pot of flowers would steal a camera.

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