Friday, May 24 2013 4:18 PM EDT2013-05-24 20:18:56 GMT
RICHMOND, VA—Candy made out of marijuana has made its way to Virginia. "It looks just like a tootsie roll or a piece of fudge, and if it's out of the wrapper, there would be no way to know," said WayneMore >>
Candy made out of marijuana has made its way to Virginia.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 4:13 PM EDT2013-05-24 20:13:37 GMT
RICHMOND, VA—Neighbors in the Forrest View area say their backroads are turning into speedways. Residents took their concerns to the City's See—Click—Fix website, but are still waiting for answers, soMore >>
Neighbors in the Forrest View area say their backroads are turning into speedways.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 4:10 PM EDT2013-05-24 20:10:23 GMT
RICHMOND, VA—Work is underway to relocate the Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia. The center will soon be expanding to nearly three times its current size. It's all part of the museum'sMore >>
Work is underway to relocate the Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia.More >>
Chicago, IL--The Chicago Teachers Union said Thursday that the city's public schools
will stay closed for at least one more day, but the union president said
she was hopeful that both sides were close to completing a settlement
to end the nearly weeklong strike.
"We are optimistic, but we are still hammering things out," Karen Lewis said.
The union called a special delegates meeting for Friday afternoon, when
the bargaining team is scheduled to give an update on contract talks.
"We've made progress in some areas, but still we have a way to go,"
Lewis added. "Teachers, paraprofessionals and clinicians remain hopeful
Negotiations resumed Thursday with an air of optimism. Lewis said
students could be back in class by Monday, a week after teachers walked
Roughly 25,000 teachers have been on the picket line in the nation's
third-largest school district. The most contentious issues on the table
have included teacher evaluations that incorporate students'
standardized test scores and job security.
After contract talks went late into the night Wednesday, Lewis said the
sides had definitely come closer together. School board President David
Vitale was also more positive.
The optimism was evident on the picket lines, too.
"I know that we will have a good resolution to this, and I do believe it
will be soon," said Michelle Gunderson, an elementary school teacher
picketing on the city's North Side. The negotiators "do not mean to have
us be embroiled in this for longer than we have to."
The school board's latest proposal scaled back penalties to teachers
after the two sides argued over what percent of student performance
should be weighed and how that should be used to judge job performance.
Under an old proposal, the union estimated that 6,000 teachers could lose their jobs within two years.
The latest offer included provisions for evaluations of tenured teachers
that would not result in dismissal in the first year. It also altered
categories that teachers can be rated on and an appeals process.
School districts nationwide have grappled with teacher assessments. The
Obama administration has given states incentives to use student
performance as a component of evaluations, though the issue has been
most contentious in Chicago.
Teachers have said it's unfair to use test scores to evaluate them,
especially with other factors affecting student learning that they can't
control: poverty, hunger and the inability to speak fluent English, to
name just a few.
Chicago's walkout canceled class for approximately 350,000 students and
has left parents scrambling to make other arrangements for young
children. The district has kept some schools open on a limited basis,
mostly to provide meals and supervision. More than 80 percent of Chicago
Public Schools students qualify for free or reduced-price lunches.
The walkout is the first Chicago teachers strike in 25 years. A 1987 walkout lasted 19 days.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has called the strike unnecessary and urged the union to continue negotiating with students in class.
Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved.