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Duncan urges experiments in education

first_imgU.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan would like to see reform of the nation’s public educational system, and he urged administrators, educators, politicians, and parents to work together to overcome the nation’s tough educational challenges.“It’s a stain on our nation that today one in four American students fails to finish high school on time or drops out … that is absolutely morally unacceptable and economically unsustainable,” Duncan told a crowd Monday at the Harvard Graduate School of Education’s Longfellow Hall.In an Askwith Forum talk titled “Fighting the Wrong Education Battles,” he said that too often “well-intentioned advocacy goes awry.” Frequently, decision-makers search for an ideal solution to educational reform instead of collaborating and compromising on “imperfect” but important initiatives that could bring lasting change.“We shouldn’t be asking, ‘Is this the perfect solution?’ We should be asking, ‘Is this a much better solution? Can it help us challenge the status quo and accelerate student achievement?’”Stakeholders must consider in- and out-of-school influences as part of that overall solution, said Duncan. While poverty greatly affects a child’s performance, great schools and teachers are the “most effective anti-poverty tool of all.” He suggested creating full-service community schools that can offer educational as well as health and social services to disadvantaged children, and pointed to the Obama administration’s Promise Neighborhoods, an initiative that funds organizations that develop similar, inclusive school models.Reform also involves developing rigorous assessments and college and career-ready academic standards like those created by the Massachusetts educational system, said Duncan. Boosting student achievement is not an “either/or solution,” he said. “Educators and the broader community should be attacking both in-school and out-of-school causes of low academic achievement.”For Duncan, the argument over whether teacher evaluations should include measures of student achievement is another “false choice.”Critics of standardized tests are right to complain that such tests are flawed can’t accurately gauge factors like “classroom management, teamwork, collaboration, and individualized instruction,” said Duncan. He acknowledged that teacher evaluations must never be based solely on test scores and should include principal observations, peer reviews, student work, and surveys.“Still, the shortcomings of today’s tests,” he said, “doesn’t mean we should simply abandon the use of standardized testing.”Another important part of education reform involves getting managers and labor leaders to work together to engage in “tough-minded collaboration and step outside of their comfort zones,” Duncan said.He suggested that No Child Left Behind, the 2001 act that includes educational reforms that critics say place too much emphasis on testing and standardized measures, is “fundamentally broken.” Duncan said that states, districts, neighborhoods, and schools need to be held to rigorous standards, but simultaneously be given room to find their own means of meeting high benchmarks.“In my mind, it’s tight on goals, being absolutely clear about goals, but give folks a lot more room to hit them.”last_img read more

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Chicago Teachers Union: City has stopped negotiating

first_imgCHICAGO (AP) — The Chicago Teachers Union says Mayor Lori Lightfoot and school district officials have walked away from negotiations about COVID-19 safety protocols. The Chicago Teachers Union news release Friday came hours after Lightfoot and Chicago Public Schools CEO Janice Jackson said they have made their “last, best and final offer.” The union’s statement says that offer is woefully inadequate. Lightfoot and Jackson went even further Friday evening saying in an emailed letter that pre-kindergarten and cluster teachers and staff without approved or pending accommodations “will be deemed absent without leave” if they fail to report to classrooms Monday.last_img read more

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Soggy Fields Soak Up Profits

first_img“We’re hoping farmers can get 250,000 to 280,000 acres planted this year,”said Dewey Lee, an extension agronomist withthe UGA College of Agricultural and EnvironmentalSciences. “That’s just about two-thirds of last year’s 400,000 acre crop.”Not since the 1979 crop of only 210,000 acres have wheat farmers planted such a smallcrop. Although Georgia farmers never raise enough wheat to significantly affect the wholesaleprice of wheat and flour on international markets, a half crop will affect the farmers. “There will certainly be a loss of farm income,” Lee said.George Shumaker, a CAES economist,estimates Georgia wheat farmers will lose about $18 million in total income from thisshort crop. “If it’s not planted, they can’t harvest it,” he said. Shumaker based the loss estimate on how much farmers would earn if they had been ableto plant and harvest a full crop. That loss doesn’t include the loss of wages to farmworkers and extra help at millers, either.Wet weather from late September through December has farmers still trying to harvestcotton and soybean fields. Until they can get those crops out of the fields, wheat andother small grains can’t be planted.And even in harvested fields, Lee said the saturated, soggy soil won’t support theweight of planting equipment.”We’re at the point now, that I’m telling farmers that if they can’t get wheatplanted before the third week of December, to not even try to get in there,” Leesaid. After that point, the cost to grow and manage the crop well is greater than thepotential income, and farmers could actually lose money.He explains that in the seven to 14 days after the ideal planting window for wheat, theyield potential drops by 15 to 20 percent. From 15 to 21 days after the planting window,the potential yield drops by almost half.”That’s true no matter what variety you plant,” he said. With less than half of Georgia’s typical crop to buy and use next spring, flour millersacross the Southeast will have to buy wheat from other areas. Lee said Georgia farmersplant mostly soft, red winter wheat. This wheat is milled into flour used in soft bakedgoods like doughnuts, cookies and cakes. “A lot of Georgia’s wheat ends up on Georgia families’ tables,” said Lee.”But, this year, that won’t be the case.” The Georgia shortage will forcemillers to bring more wheat in from other areas, Lee said. He said the farmer’s andmiller’s problems will have little to no effect on the price of baked goods for consumers.But reduced acreage is just one problem wheat farmers face. Soggy fields make growingwheat and other small grains more difficult.”Continued wet weather will really tax farmers’ management,” Lee said.”They’ll have to carefully time nutrient applications and manage to increasetillers.” Rain can wash away pesticides, nitrogen or other nutrients, too. Wet soil also limits wheat growth. Soggy soil keeps oxygen away from roots, preventinggood root system development. Without good roots, the plant can’t absorb nutrients andproduce enough heads for high yields.”It’s already started out as a tough year for small grains producers inGeorgia,” Lee said. “All we can do now is hope the weather cooperates so thewheat that is planted can produce a good crop.” Unusually wet fall weather has Georgia wheat farmers planting their smallest crops inalmost 20 years, said a University of Georgia agronomist.last_img read more

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first_imgBy Bob WesterfieldUniversity of GeorgiaThe muggy heat makes working in the landscape less appealing thanit was in the spring. But insect, disease and other plantproblems need attending to.To keep your landscape looking its best, be a Sherlock Holmes inyour yard. Frequent visits to keep an eye on things is often allyou need to detect problems before they get too big.A trowel, a white index card and perhaps a hand pruner will helpyou with your landscape detective work.First, visit your annuals or herbaceous perennials. These plantsusually need the most immediate attention. Are they healthy,green and strong or spindly, yellow and weak? Perhaps they need alittle fertilizer. Annuals, in particular, benefit from light,frequent applications.Look closelyBe careful, though. Look closely. Yellowing of these plants canalso mean too much water, and recent rains have kept the soilfairly wet.Dig down a little to see how wet the soil is and how well it’sdraining. Heavy, wet soils can play havoc on many landscapeplants and may be hard to remedy without renovating the bed.Look at the blooms of these plants. Deadheading, or removingspent flowers, will help keep them blooming all summer. Check theblooms, too, for signs of insects or disease.Look carefully at the foliage on all plants. Are the leavesspotted or riddled with holes? Are they speckled, bronze-coloredor different from the way you remembered?Leaf spotsLeaf spots can be caused by insects or disease. Usually, if it’sdisease, a yellow or purple halo will be around the dark spot.You may need to use a fungicide. Sometimes, improving the aircirculation by lightly pruning will improve a plant’s health, too.Insect damage may appear as solid, blackish-brown spots, chewedareas or speckled leaves. Be sure to look at the undersides ofthe leaves. Many insects will feed and hide there.Properly identifying the insect is the key in selecting thecorrect control. Remember, there are far more beneficial insectsout there than bad guys. Beneficials do an outstanding job ofkeeping damaging insects at bay on their own.Buy a good insect-ID book and learn how to tell the good bugsfrom the bad. Treat plants only when pests are causing moredamage than you can live with.Hard to seeSome insects are so tiny they’re hard to see. This is where yourwhite index card can help. If you see speckled or off-coloredfoliage and suspect insects but can’t see any, shake the leavesbriskly over the index card. You may see tiny red specks calledspider mites.Spider mites can build up heavy infestations quickly ifconditions are right. To control these pests, use a productlabeled for mite control.Check azaleas for off-colored foliage, too. A common summerproblem is lace bugs, which feed on the undersides of the leavesof azaleas, cotoneasters and other plants. They have manygenerations of offspring, so keep a watch and control this oneall summer.Chewing damageChewing damage on leaves often indicates another type of insectdamage. This can be caused by many insects, including Japanesebeetles, leaf beetles, snails and slugs.Once you know which culprit is munching on your plants, selectthe appropriate control. Insects are usually easier to kill whenthey’re young than when they’re mature.The University of Georgia Extension Service office in your countycan help you figure out what caused your landscape problem andthe best control measure.County agents have special diagnostic tools and resources to helpthem solve almost any landscape problem. Be sure to describe thedamage accurately.Better yet, bring in a fresh sample. While you’re at the countyagent’s office, pick up a few of their many brochures on insectand disease control in the landscape.(Bob Westerfield is an extension consumer horticulturist withthe University of Georgia College of Agricultural andEnvironmental Sciences.)last_img read more

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‘Gardening’ tricks

first_imgUniversity of GeorgiaShow host Walter Reeves examines a seed packet, compares rotarytillers, prepares a lawn for drought and deadheads rhododendronson “Gardening in Georgia” May 28 on Georgia Public Broadcasting.”Gardening in Georgia” is produced by GPB and the University ofGeorgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. Itairs each Saturday at 12:30 and 7 p.m.Reeves will explore the wealth of helpful gardening informationon the back of a tiny seed packet. He shows how to understand therecommended hardiness zones, planting dates, days to maturity andother information.He demonstrates how to use self-propelled, front-tine and handytwo-cycle tillers. Then he describes how a few simple tools canhelp you measure the water your sprinkler applies. He tells howto mow your lawn at just the right height, too, and how tocalibrate your fertilizer spreader.Finally, Hank Bruno of Callaway Gardens shows Reeves how to twistthe faded blooms from the branch tips of rhododendrons. Thissimple trick can multiply your plants’ blooms next spring.last_img read more

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2019 Flavor of Georgia

first_imgSnack Foods:Bodacious Food Company, Mama Geraldine’s Pimento Cheese Straws, JasperHardy’s Peanuts Inc., Delicious Dill Pickle Party Peanuts, HawkinsvilleThe Religious Nuts Company, Cin-Amen, Atlanta Jams & Jellies:Elusive Jams LLC, Fig Bourbon Jam, WhiteFairywood Thicket Farm, Phenomenal Cosmic Strawberry Jam, FairburnSavy Confections, Black Cherry Pecan Jam, Fairburn Dairy Products:Pine Street Market, Pimento Cheese, Avondale EstatesSmith Family Dairy Farm, Silly Goat Cheese, Norman ParkSuga’s Enterprises LLC, Smoked Gouda Pimento Cheese, Powder Springs Condiments & Salsas:Abby J’s Gourmet, Blackhawk Smokin’ Hot Pickled Okra, ClarkesvilleBuilt By Bees, Tupelo Balsamic Vinegar, AtlantaPine Street Market, Bacon Jam, Avondale Estates  Honey & Related Products:Built By Bees, Blueberry Whipped Honey, AtlantaClassic City Bee Company, Smoked Honey, AthensH. L. Franklin’s Healthy Honey, Creamed Honey with Chocolate, Statesboro Sauces & Seasonings:Bacon’s Heir, Pork Panko, ChambleeBeautiful Briny Sea, Gun Powder Finishing Salt, AtlantaKay’s Cookery, Habeeb’s Honey Braised Sauce, Lawrenceville Judges selected 33 products to compete in the final round of the University of Georgia’s 2019 Flavor of Georgia Food Product Contest set for March 19 in Atlanta.The contest is the state’s premier proving ground for small, upstart food companies as well as time-honored products. This year’s finalists represent all corners of the state and the best of Georgia’s diverse culinary heritage.The finalists passed the first round of judging and were selected from a field of 138 products in 11 categories.Finalists will bring their products to Atlanta for the final round of judging, which will be held in conjunction with the Georgia Department of Agriculture’s Agriculture Awareness Week celebration, set for March 18-22. Georgia Commissioner of Agriculture Gary Black has designated March 19 as Flavor of Georgia Day.“Once again, the level of innovation and talent represented in our contest has left us amazed and excited for things to come,” said Sharon P. Kane, contest coordinator and economist with the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences’ (CAES) Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development.“Georgia is home to some of the most creative minds in the food business, and the Flavor of Georgia contest is our yearly reminder of how lucky we are to live in a state that values entrepreneurship and good food.”A food business development specialist, Kane and her center colleagues have organized the annual contest since 2007.Judges for the final round of the contest will include food brokers, grocery buyers and other food-industry experts. Judges evaluate entries by category based on their Georgia theme, commercial appeal, taste, innovation and market potential. Contestants will provide samples to judges and pitch their products in a “Shark Tank”-style presentation. Finalists will be named in each category, and a grand prize winner and People’s Choice Award winner will be named.This year’s finalists are listed by company, product name and city. All entries are from Georgia-based businesses.Barbecue Sauces:Aubs Company LLC, AubSauce, DecaturByne Blueberry Farms Inc., Blueberry Barbecue Sauce, WaynesboroChinese Southern Belle, Wild Wild East Asian BBQ Teriyaki Pineapple, Smyrnacenter_img Miscellaneous:Georgia Grinders, Pecan-Peanut Butter, AtlantaHunter Cattle, Farm Boy’s Cane Syrup, BrookletOlive Orchards of Georgia, Olive Oil, Quitman Meats & Seafood:Epting Events, Beef Short Ribs, AthensJensen Reserve, Coppa Roast, LoganvillePouch Pies, Chicken, Butternut, Leek & Thyme Pie, Norcross Confections:A Cacao Affair, Macarons, MariettaFarmHouse PoundCakes LLC, Luscious Lemon, CorneliaPie Provisions, Georgia Blueberry Pie Filling, Kennesaw  Beverages:FreshKiss Tea, Hibiscus Kombucha, PalmettoMontane Sparkling Spring Water, Grapefruit Peach, AtlantaNectar Foods Two Inc., Nectar Ready To Blend Smoothies, Decatur The Flavor of Georgia Food Product Contest is organized by the UGA CAES Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development with support from the Office of the Georgia Governor, Georgia Department of Agriculture, Georgia Grown, Gourmet Foods International, the Georgia Agribusiness Council, Nadine’s Classic Cuisine and Georgia CEO.More information about the contest is available at and by following the contest on Twitter @FlavorofGA or on Instagram at read more

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Back in Session: Video

first_img Director and Producer of “Back Session” Jessica Wiegandt “Back in Session” screening at BANFF My goal was to capture the community of students at Brevard College and their unique relationship and proximity to wilderness. The project allowed me to work with the Outing Club at the college as well as students who have spent countless hours exploring the woods of Pisgah, DuPont, and the surrounding Western North Carolina area. This place is special to many and continues to be home to adventurous souls. I am thankful for a college that supports its students in connecting with the natural world. The film screened at BANFF, it was extremely well received. center_img Jess Wiegandt is a senior at Brevard College, double majoring in Wilderness Leadership and Experiential Education (WLEE) and Journalism. She is originally from Daleville, VA and has spent time in college studying and working internationally in media and outdoor education. The majority of Wiegandt’s video education came from studying at the Kalu Yala Institute in Panamá during spring 2018. This fall, she will begin pursuing a masters in Film and Media Production at American University in Washington, D.C. “Back in Session” was completed as her senior project at Brevard and totaled 115 documented hours as she was the director, videographer, and editor for the film. “Back in Session” has been an ongoing project of mine at Brevard College. When I was a sophomore, a couple of faculty members asked if I’d want to make a BANFF film about the school. My degrees at Brevard College are Wilderness Leadership and Experiential Education (WLEE) and Journalism, and I was able to combine them to create this film. About the Writer / Filmmakerlast_img read more

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The power of admitting a mistake

first_imgConfucius said, “If you make a mistake and do not correct it, this is called a mistake.” Yet, many times when a mistake is made, people try to pretend that it did not happen. They attempt to justify the wrong position or try to cover it up, which leads to additional mistakes. This situation reminds me of another quote — “When you find yourself in a hole, stop digging.”Quite often, more damage is done to credibility, relationships, trust and integrity by the actions taken after the original mistake. This is true in personal relationships and especially true when a leader makes a mistake. How many times have we seen high-profile people get prosecuted, not for the original crime, but for the attempt to cover it up by lying?Of course there is another choice when a mistake is made—admit it, learn from it, correct it and apologize to those that were adversely affected. There is power in properly admitting a mistake.“Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” -Albert Einstein continue reading » 33SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

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Market players see coronavirus triggering further risk-off moves

first_imgA raft of new coronavirus cases in numerous countries outside China over the weekend has redoubled concern about the ability of the illness to spread, and potential economic impact.South Korea’s Kospi dropped as much as 3.2 percent after the country’s count of cases rose quickly to 763, and the government raised its infectious-disease alert to the highest level. Italy’s government imposed a lockdown on an area of 50,000 people near Milan and took other measures as infections reached 140. Iran reported an eighth death with 43 cases.That’s all on top of the impact on hardest-hit China, where millions of firms face potential collapse if banks don’t act, though China’s top leaders said in a statement after a meeting on Friday that they will exercise more flexibility in monetary and fiscal policy. “With cases of COVID-19 still rising, it is hard to tell when manufacturing will bottom, potentially setting the stage for prolonged weakness,” said Vishnu Varathan, head of economics and strategy at Mizuho Bank Ltd. in Singapore. “This means that we’re going to see the juxtaposition of more safe-haven demand.” He added, “this is a safe-haven trade — you’re getting rid of risk in your portfolio.”Moving to neutral“The virus spreading to Italy and Iran is finally spooking some investors on what has mostly been a mostly Asian situation,” said Rick Bensignor, president of Bensignor Investment Strategies. “With the SPX having reversed lower right from its weekly risk level at 3,394 — and a daily negative divergence now in place — I lower our tactical levered long position down to pure neutral. We’re also exiting our long Nikkei trade with a small loss.”Risk aversion“Risk aversion is likely to intensify over the near term given the sharp rise in cases in Korea, Italy and elsewhere,” said Mitul Kotecha, senior emerging markets strategist at TD Securities in Singapore. “Markets are becoming increasingly focused on the risk of more prolonged economic damage than had been previously expected. Supply chains are becoming increasingly exposed, while services and tourism are suffering across many countries.”China weakness“Policymakers are trying to get the economy going again but we think weakness is likely to persist well into the fourth quarter,” said Win Thin, global head of currency strategy at at Brown Brothers Harriman, of China. “Stimulus is in the pipeline but it won’t be enough to totally offset the growing impact of the virus.”Need to see moreWe still need “to see the numbers that can provide a little bit more direction as to where things are going,” Jingyi Pan, market strategist at IG Group, told Bloomberg TV in Singapore. “Some of these high-frequency indicators are perhaps indicating that economic activity hasn’t much resumed yet, so these are the things we have to see coming back online.”Headline risk“We view this as headline risk. Our base case view is that coronavirus continues to represent demand delayed and not demand destroyed,” said Steve Chiavarone, a portfolio manager with Federated Investors.Gold rally“U.S. real rates have plummeted during the virus scare, with 10y TIPS yields — already quite low at just 6.5 basis points above zero on January 17 — are today more than 15 basis points below zero,” and John Velis, FX and macro strategist at BNY Mellon. “Since gold tends to trade inversely to real rates, the rally in gold will probably persist as long as the latter stay under pressure.”Topics : Here’s what strategists and investors are saying about the developments.Normal by July?“More near term panic will weigh on risk, but panic is necessary to increase containment odds. Credit markets appear to recognize that,” said Dennis DeBusschere of Evercore ISI. “EISI’s Survey team asked investors about the impact of the outbreak and the vast majority of respondents see both the risks as understated and expect US Treasury yields were likely to decline by 25 basis points (to about 1.3 percent). 80 percent of investors expect supply chains to return to near-normal by July though.” The survey was published on Feb. 17.Hard to pick bottomlast_img read more

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New Zealand PM unruffled as quake hits mid-interview

first_imgNew Zealand lies on the Pacific Basin “Ring of Fire”, where tectonic plates collide generating more than 15,000 earthquakes a year, although only 100–150 are strong enough to be felt.A shallow 6.3 quake in the South Island city of Christchurch killed 185 people in 2011, while a 7.8 shake slightly further north in 2016 was the second strongest ever recorded in the country.Ardern canvassed the prospect of a major quake as New Zealand entered a seven-week COVID-19 lockdown in late March, saying it was always a possibility.”In my mind constantly, as the prime minister of the ‘Shaky Isles’, is — no matter what’s going on in our lives — we must always be prepared for that,” she told reporters.The country’s official GeoNet seismic monitoring service put the strength of Monday’s quake at 5.8 and said there were around 40 aftershocks.”Felt as a long, strong shake in Wellington. That was not very much fun,” one Twitter user wrote.Another person reported “quite the shake in Wairarapa”, east of Palmerston North.”I hope everyone else is OK,” he said on Twitter.Topics : But there was sustained shaking in Wellington, where Ardern was being interviewed on breakfast television from parliament’s Beehive building, which is designed to absorb seismic forces by swaying slightly on its foundations.Why am I not surprised that Jacinda Ardern casually takes an earthquake interrupting her interview in her— 🇳🇿 • eloise • 🇫🇷 (@reyloise) May 24, 2020″We’re just having a bit of an earthquake here, Ryan,” Ardern told Auckland-based AM Show presenter Ryan Bridge, briefly looking concerned as she scanned the room around her.”Quite a decent shake here, if you see things moving behind me,” she said, smiling, as she quickly regained her poise and continued the interview.”It’s just stopped,” she said. “We’re fine, I’m not under any hanging lights, I look like I’m in a structurally sound place.” A moderate 5.6-magnitude earthquake rattled New Zealand’s North Island early Monday but failed to crack Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s trademark composure as she conducted a live television interview.The quake struck just off the coast before 8:00 am local time (2000 Sunday GMT) at a depth of about 52 kilometres (32 miles) near Levin, about 90 kilometres north of Wellington, the US Geological Survey said.St John Ambulance and New Zealand Police both said there were no initial reports of injuries or damage. There was no tsunami warning.last_img read more

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Governor Wolf Appoints Obra Kernodle to Gaming Control Board

first_imgGovernor Wolf Appoints Obra Kernodle to Gaming Control Board November 27, 2017 Press Release Harrisburg, PA – Governor Wolf announced today that Obra Kernodle has been appointed to the Gaming Control Board. Obra most recently served as Deputy Chief of Staff in the Governor’s Office.“Obra has been an important voice in my administration for improving the lives of all Pennsylvanians and I know he will bring the same dedication and commitment to the Gaming Control Board,” Governor Wolf said.Most recently, before his appointment as a member of Governor Wolf’s senior staff, Obra was a senior advisor for Governor-elect Tom Wolf’s transition team.Prior to joining the Wolf for Governor Campaign, Obra worked in Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter’s Administration as Deputy of Legislative Affairs, helping to coordinate the city’s Actual Value Initiative. In 2012, Obra was part of President Obama’s reelection effort as the Pennsylvania Southeast Political Director. Obra currently sits on the boards of Visit Philly and Welcome America.Born and raised in Philadelphia, Kernodle is a graduate of Roman Catholic High School. He obtained his Bachelor of Arts in Education from Florida A&M University in 2002.center_img SHARE Email Facebook Twitterlast_img read more

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Two paths to cannabis reform

first_imgNewsRoom 31 January 2018Family First Comment: This article highlights why we oppose the Greens bill…“’Would you grow your own aspirin?’ Indeed, cannabis contains over 400 distinct compounds, including 100 different phyto-cannabinoid compounds. “We need to be sure what they’re getting. I cannot see how you would grow your own for a medicine. If I prescribe aspirin, I know what I’m prescribing. By allowing people to grow their own cannabis, doctors would effectively be telling patients to “go out, find some willow bark and make [their] own aspirin.”Exactly! nation’s politicians are about to debate two different types of cannabis reform. Thomas Coughlan explains where they both sit on the reform spectrum and details their pros and cons.After 10 years of waiting, politicians wanting cannabis reform suddenly have two options in front of them in one week.The Government’s bill, introduced by Health Minister David Clark, would amend the Misuse of Drugs Act to allow the use of cannabis-based products and provide a defence for terminally ill patients charged with using them. It was introduced last year and debated for the first time on Tuesday.An alternative bill, introduced last year by the Greens’ Julie Anne Genter and picked up by Chloe Swarbrick after the election would also seek to amend the Misuse of Drugs Act. It would allow anyone with a prescription from a doctor to use cannabinoids, including those they grow themselves — a detail that has caused controversy from the bill’s detractors. It is set to be debated on Wednesday.While the Government’s bill, with the support of all three governing parties and National, is expected to go to select committee, the fate of Swarbrick’s bill is less certain. The Green party will support the bill and Labour and New Zealand First have signalled they will allow MPs a conscience vote. Key figures in the Government, including Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, have indicated they would support it, at least to committee stage. However, Swarbrick will have to rely on some National votes for the bill to pass its first reading.Another distinction is that Swarbrick’s bill will allow patients (or an immediate relative or person nominated by the patient), with a doctor’s permission, to grow cannabis to treat themselves. This has lead the bill to be derided by detractors like Family First as a “grow-your-own-dope bill”.‘Would you grow your own aspirin?’Indeed, cannabis contains over 400 distinct compounds, including 100 different phyto-cannabinoid compounds.“We need to be sure what they’re getting. I cannot see how you would grow your own for a medicine,” he said.“If I prescribe aspirin, I know what I’m prescribing.” By allowing people to grow their own cannabis, doctors would effectively be telling patients to “go out, find some willow bark and make [their] own aspirin.”That said, there is the prospect of new strains of medical-grade cannabis becoming available in the future.“It is highly likely a whole dried cannabis plant will reach a sufficient level of consistency to gain Medsafe approval,” Dr Giles Newton-Howes, a senior lecturer of the University of Otagosaid.READ MORE: read more

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Jerry bares accomplishments in first 100 days in office

first_imgArundown of his programs and projects carried out or started in his first 100days in office was published in the 15-page Kauswagan,the official publication of the Iloilo City government. WELFARE * setup digital information kiosk at the ground floor of city hall to give publiceasier time looking for departments and offices as well as other fees neededfor every transactions Mayor Jerry Treñas. IAN PAUL CORRDEO/PN *Regional Gawad Kalasag Award from the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction andManagement Council – awarded to Iloilo City Disaster Risk Reduction andManagement Council *P38-million command center for disaster risk reduction and traffic – site inMandurriao district identified; construction begins this year *P36-million Regional Evacuation Center – site in Jaro district identified; tobe funded by the Office of Civil Defense “Letus try to do our best to make the lives of Ilonggos better. We should worktogether to achieve our dreams for our city,” said Treñas./PN *tree planting program *Iloilo City Police Office – cited s outstanding in Police Community Relations *Charter Day Job Fair ILOILOCity – So how did Mayor Jerry Treñas fare in his first 100 days in office? *5,564 job hunters hired from July to September through the Public EmploymentService Office *Metro Manila Development Authority helping craft Iloilo City traffic plan *streetlight repairs *free flu vaccine HEALTH AND SANITATION *cash to individuals in crisis situations; free haircut for pupils; and socialservices, especially the Office of Senior Citizens Affair transferred to cityhall ground floor for the convenient of senior citizens Thecity’s chief executive gauged his performance against his election promisessummed up in the acronym WHEELS, which stands for Welfare, Health andSanitation, Education, Environmental Management, Livelihood, andSustainability. * IloiloCity ranked 8th safest city in Southeast Asia EDUCATION *leadership trainings for youth *inauguration of new phase of esplanade LIVELIHOOD ENVIRONMENT MANAGEMENT *construction of new warehouse for city government documents, supplies andequipment *16,466 kilos trash collected during coastal and river cleanup *establishment of MICE Center *multimillion grant from Alliance Global Inc. for initiatives to make themetropolis resilient *city government department heads, members of the City Council, academe, andprivate sector underwent “Strategic Refresh” to revisit its objective andinitiatives and ensure that they remain relevant and responsive to the needs ofthe institution and its stakeholders. *7,000 trees planted along floodway * RedCross cited Iloilo City government for voluntary blood services program *establishment of dengue hydration unit and conduct of blood donation drive inresponse to rising dengue cases SUSTAINABILITY *reclassification of coastal road to industrial zone *Technical Institute of Iloilo City-Molo offering new course *provision of 11 bike patrols for Iloilo Esplanadelast_img read more

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SPILL CLEANUP ON THE RIGHT TRACK: AC Energy doing a good job –…

first_imgPascua said the recovered debris from the oil spill incident is now scheduled for transport to Region 3 which they have identified as area of disposal. ILOILO City – AC Energy Philippines, owner of the power barge which spilled bunker fuel into the coast of Iloilo City and Guimaras following an explosion on July 3, is doing okay in its cleanup activity, said the regional chief of the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) here. The key areas cover the following: “They still have more than two weeks to finish it and with the rate it is going I believe it is doable,” he said. Of the 268,948.61 liters of bunker oil spilled into the coast of Iloilo City as verified by the Philippine Coast Guard, some 95 percent have already been recovered by the cleanup team organized by AC Energy. * continued monitoring of air quality and ensuring that air quality is safe before affected families are allowed to return to their homes Benzene, on the other hand, which is also present in bunker fuel is classified as a carcinogen. It increases the risk of cancer and other illnesses. * completion of oil spill cleanup and ensuring that water quality is restored to safe levels * rehabilitation plan for the affected mangrove areas and fisheries The EMP, which was submitted by AC Energy, discussed the detailed plans of the company and the relevant timeline for the implementation of such plans in relation to the key areas which the DENR-EMB stressed and highlighted during a technical conference shortly after the oil spill incident. BIG IMPROVEMENT. These drone shots show the progress of the oil spill cleanup in Iloilo City. Note the dramatic difference between these before-and-after photos (taken on July 4 and 5) of the waters surrounding the power barge that spilled bunker fuel into the city’s waters on July 3 following an explosion. Of the 268,948.61 liters of bunker oil spilled, some 95 percent have already been recovered. PHOTO FROM AC ENERGY Petroleum fuel oils such as bunker fuel oil can contain hydrogen sulfide. Exposure to concentrations of hydrogen sulfide may cause irritation to the eyes, nose or throat. It may also cause difficulty in breathing for some asthmatics. The remaining five percent, accordingly, refers to floaters which naturally evaporate or either stick to sea walls, or carried away by tidal movements. Atty. Raman Neil Pascua, EMB regional director of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), said, “In fact, we may soon recommend that affected families return to their homes. The current sampling on the toxicity level of the affected areas is giving a good sign.” * proper collection and disposal of oil contaminated materials and wastes “As of now, we got zero on the presence of hydrogen sulfide and there’s a very safe level of benzene,” Pascua added. Pascua also said that with the pace AC Energy is conducting its cleanup efforts of the oil spill, the company may be able to finish it by Aug. 3 as stated in their timeline. In a separate interview with radio station RMN-DyRI Iloilo, Pascua said AC Energy is religiously following the environment management plan (EMP) that aims to address the environmental impact of the oil spill. “As soon as the debris has been put in a sealed container van or drums, we will immediately transport it to the designated disposal in Region 3,” he said./PNlast_img read more

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Bikers banned in boundary brgy of Bacolod, neighboring areas

first_imgYulo advised them to observe minimum public health standards such as physical distancing and wearing of face mask, and bring at all times proper proof of identification as residents of Bago. In a notice, Alangilan village chief Degie Tanista Sr. said they have prohibited the entry of bikers as stated in Barangay Resolution 159, series of 2020. Murcia, the municipality next to Bacolod in the east, has also banned bikers from entering the town proper starting Wednesday. Since early this week, Barangay Alangilan here, Murcia town and Bago City have banned the entry of bikers in their respective jurisdictions. He also discouraged local bikers from engaging in leisure biking outside of Bago until further notice. Last week, Talisay City Mayor Neil Lizares III also issued Executive Order 28, series of 2020, discouraging biking, hiking, basketball, and other recreational activities in the city for 14 days to prevent the further spread of COVID-19. (With a report from PNA/PN) “I’m very sorry that we are still preventing them from interacting with the people in the poblacion,” said Major Roberto Dejucos, chief of the Murcia municipal police station. “They can pass along the national road but they cannot enter the town proper.” “Bikers from outside Bago are not allowed to enter the city for exploration, sightseeing, recreation, fitness, exercise, or sport,” the mayor’s order said. Alangilan – rural village in the northeastern part of Bacolod – is a common gateway for bikers and other travelers going to Talisay. Yulo directed the Bago City police station to establish roadblocks on identified control and entry points in the city. BACOLOD City – Biking enthusiasts have been restricted from a boundary village in this city and in two neighboring localities as well after several bikers from adjacent Talisay City have tested positive for coronavirus disease (COVID-19). “For public health safety during the COVID-19 pandemic, bikers are banned from entering the territorial jurisdiction of Barangay Alangilan effective July 20 until further notice,” Tanista said. In Bago, the city next to Bacolod in the south, Mayor Nicholas Yulo issued Executive Order 46 temporarily suspending the entry of bicycle tourists and leisure bikers starting Wednesday.last_img read more

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Baggies close in on Lescott

first_img He worked previously with Lescott during his time on the coaching staff at Everton. Irvine was the Toffees’ assistant manager when the centre-back joined them in 2006 from Wolves – the club Lescott began his career at and West Brom’s derby rivals. Lescott has been linked with other Barclays Premier League sides, including Hull and Stoke, but it seems being reunited with Irvine is what lies ahead for the Birmingham-born player. He made only 10 top-flight appearances for City in their title-winning campaign last term. New Albion head coach Alan Irvine confirmed on Wednesday the midlands outfit were in negotiations over signing Lescott, who is out of contract this summer after five years with Manchester City, and it appears the deal is now moving closer. The 31-year-old looks set to become Irvine’s first recruit since the Scot’s appointment as Baggies boss at the weekend. Former England defender Joleon Lescott is undergoing a medical ahead of a proposed move to West Brom, Press Association Sport understands.center_img Press Associationlast_img read more

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