State should rethink its new testing rules

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionI read with interest the Jan. 23 article about new accountability rules for New York’s schools. Having taught for over 30 years in this state, I’m used to seeing regulations come and go. Some ideas have clear and appropriate goals. Others seem to have been created on the fly.Particularly difficult for me to swallow in the new batch of rules is the directive about districts being held accountable for student participation in state tests. This strikes me as lacking any clear thought and being another case of the state passing the buck to districts, as it so often does.The opt-out movement is an example of democracy at its best. An important constituency (parents) realized that something was wrong and took action.There’s a complete lack of logic in holding districts accountable for increasing participation rates. How on Earth can they be expected to do this when there is a concerted effort to the contrary by parents? The state obviously has no answer, so it just kicked the can. Why would the state try to quash a well-organized and thoughtful act of resistance? We try to teach students to be active participants in our democracy. When we try to suppress actions, we are sending a contradictory message.The state Department of Education would do well to include all stakeholders in a comprehensive and inclusive discussion of what is really wrong with testing in the state. Forcing districts to be bullies is not the answer.Martha MeskutoveczGlenvilleMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homeslast_img read more

Forty specimens tested negative for Wuhan coronavirus: Ministry

first_imgThe Health Ministry revealed Wednesday that 40 specimens of individuals being monitored for the novel coronavirus have tested negative, while two others are still under observation.Anung Sugihantono, the ministry’s disease control and environmental health director general, said the ministry’s medical research and training agency had gathered data from across the country.The Health Ministry was collaborating with regional health agencies as well as private and public health service centers in monitoring the suspected cases, he said.”We are still monitoring public health conditions through a surveillance system,” Anung said on Wednesday.Read also: Chinese toddler becomes first suspected Wuhan coronavirus case in ManadoHe added that the general public was urged to remain calm and cautious regarding the spread of the coronavirus. Anung also reminded people to maintain their health through a healthy lifestyle.According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there were 24,554 confirmed cases of the 2019-nCoV acute respiratory disease around the globe as of Wednesday. Most of the confirmed cases were in China with 24,363 cases, while 191 cases were confirmed in 24 countries.The United Nations’ health agency also recorded that 491 people in China and one person in the Philippines had died from the disease. (dpk)Topics :last_img read more

Australian media face trial over Pell sex abuse case reporting

first_imgAfter the verdict some Australian media said an unnamed high-profile person had been convicted of a serious crime that could not be reported, while some overseas media named Pell and the charges.The second case was later dropped, and the suppression order was lifted in February 2019. Pell’s conviction was overturned by Australia’s High Court in April.Supreme Court of Victoria Justice John Dixon on Tuesday proposed beginning the trial on Nov. 9, although the prosecution and defense have yet to agree on all the issues at stake and whether to go through a single trial or several.The prosecution is seeking one trial, which would be held before a judge, but the lawyer representing the charged media organizations and reporters said there appeared to be 13 separate controversies. Dozens of Australian journalists and publishers are set to face trial in November over coverage of ex-Vatican treasurer George Pell’s child sex abuse conviction in 2018, facing charges that they breached an Australia-wide gag order in the case.Prosecutors in the state of Victoria said 19 journalists and 21 publications aided and abetted contempt of court by overseas media and breached suppression orders imposed by the trial judge.Pell was found guilty in December 2018 of sexually assaulting two choirboys, but reporting on the case was gagged so as not to prejudice another trial on separate charges. “The respondents are very anxious for these matters to be resolved, finally, that have been hanging over their heads for far too long, but we do think it’s a question of proceeding with some caution,” Matthew Collins, the lawyer for the media organizations, told the court.Those facing contempt charges include journalists from Nine Entertainment Co’s newspapers The Age and the Australian Financial Review and several News Corp publications.Breaches of suppression orders can be punished with jail for up to five years and fines of nearly A$100,000 ($66,000) for individuals and nearly A$500,000 for companies.The next hearing in the case is set for July. center_img Topics :last_img read more

Ascot hosts race day for horse and house

first_img Brisbane kitchen scoops top award The property is being taken to auction by Place Ascot.Built in 2005, this five-bedroom house dominates a 617sq m block around the corner from the historic Eagle Farm Racecourse.A water feature frames the entrance, and visitors are then led into the living and dining area where the ceiling void opens the house to both levels. The open-plan living areas look up to the second storey.Patrick McKinnon of Place Ascot says locals have dominated public interest in the property with 40 groups inspecting the house.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus12 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market12 hours ago“It’s been strong in the last two weeks post-election,” he said.“This is a stunning property on one of the most prestigious streets, one of the big 10 in Ascot.” The roomy kitchen with designer stainless steel appliances.Upstairs, a frameless glass balustrade from the central living zone allows an uninterrupted view of the lower level open-plan living area. Five houses sold on Yabba St last year, ranging in price from $1.45 million to $1.95 million. The street record is held by 157 Yabba St which sold for $3.78 million in 2016.The current owners of 42 Yabba St are the second to look after the property.“They’ve restored it back to where it was,” Mr McKinnon said.“They’ve fully painted, restored all the wiring, redone the pool and the pond that flows around the house, and the landscaping.” Two-storey city penthouse just $730k This property at 42 Yabba St, Ascot, is going to auction on Saturday at 2pm.THERE’S a big day of racing planned for Ascot on Saturday, one for a horse and one for a house.The horse that wins Queensland’s prestigious Stradbroke handicap will collect $1.5 million in prizemoney. MORE REAL ESTATE STORIES >>>FOLLOW THE COURIER-MAIL REAL ESTATE TEAM ON FACEBOOK<<< Jockey Ben Melham rides Santa Ana Lane (left) to victory in last year’s Ubet Stradbroke Handicap in Brisbane. The race returns to the Eagle Farm Racecourse this year. Picture: AAP/Albert Perez.The bidder who wins the race to secure 42 Yabba St at auction will most probably need more than that, but they’ll be buying an entertainer of distinction in the heart of blue chip Ascot. The view from the glass balustrade.At least three bidders are expected at Saturday’s auction which starts at 2pm.Stradbroke Day at the Eagle Farm racecourse starts at 9am with the TAB Stradbroke Cup starting at 3.35pm. The upstairs master bedroom.The kitchen has mirrored splashbacks, a stone island bench and breakfast bar. Outside areas include a wraparound patio and inground pool with shimmering waterfall.Two bedrooms have study nooks, the parent’s retreat has two-way access, a walk-in wardrobe, and an ensuite with separate bath, shower, twin vanities and marble benchtops.last_img read more

U.S., Trinidad cargoes booked at UK’s Dragon LNG terminal

first_imgIllustration purposes only (Image courtesy of Dragon LNG)The UK’s Dragon LNG terminal is scheduled to receive a pair of liquefied natural gas cargoes later this week. First of the two cargoes has been loaded at Cheniere’s Sabine Pass export facility in Louisiana. The 155,000-cbm TFDE LNG carrier GasLog Shanghai is scheduled to dock at the Dragon LNG facility on March 5.The second cargo, being transported onboard the 137,814-cbm LNG carrier Hispania Spirit is scheduled to dock at the facility also on March 5. The cargo has been loaded at the Atlantic LNG facility in Point Fortin, Trinidad and Tobago.The terminal at Waterston, Milford Haven in Pembrokeshire, is owned by Shell (50 percent) and the London-based independent infrastructure investment manager, Ancala Partners that acquired a 50 percent stake in the facility from Petronas.The facility has a maximum gas send-out rate to the NTS of 7.6 billion cubic meters of gas per annum. The terminal can supply up to 10 percent of the UK’s energy needs. LNG World News Stafflast_img read more

‘Trigger-happy’ man arrested

first_imgThe 21-year-old John Mark Calcetasindiscriminately fired an improvised 12-gauge shotgun around 10 p.m. onFeb. 3, a police report showed. Officers from the Leon municipal policestation responded to the village after receiving a report. Detained in the lockup facility of thetown’s police station, the suspect faces charges for violation of Republic Act10591, or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act./PN They confiscated the gun after Calcetas failedto present a license. ILOILO City – Police arrested a“trigger-happy” man in Barangay Camando, Leon, Iloilo.last_img

Moores Hill man gets the maximum in scary domestic incident

first_imgVersailles, In. — A Moores Hill man received the maximum sentence in a recent alarming domestic violence case. Ripley County prosecutor Ric Hertel asked Superior Court Judge Jeffery Sharp for the maximum, 2 ½ years for attempted arson, following a guilty plea by Shane Wilson, 42.Additionally, the judge made a domestic violence determination. The ruling results in a permanent forfeiture of Wilson’s right to possess a firearm.Court documents say Wilson’s significant other had gone to bed after midnight following an argument. While the victim slept, Wilson disconnected the car battery, hid telephones and retrieved a gas can. While holding a lighter, Wilson poured gas on the bed while victim slept and threatened to ignite the bed. Finally, the victim was able to notify police before the incident escalated further.Wilson was originally charged with attempted arson and intimidation after telling police, “he only wanted to work things out.”Hertel recognized the efforts of deputy prosecutor Ashlee Satterfield in coordinating expert testimony from Safe Passage, Inc, and her time with the victim.last_img read more

Ferguson in three and in challenge

first_imgSir Alex Ferguson has challenged Manchester United’s Premier League title winners to make it a hat-trick in the next two seasons. Ferguson thanked the fans for the reception they gave him during the 2-1 win over Swansea, his final game at Old Trafford. “Yesterday was a day I will never forget,” he said. “I thank you for that.” Ferguson also urged supporters to turn up for Tuesday’s Under-21 encounter with Liverpool at Old Trafford. “We play that mob across the road,” he said. “I hope some of you cheer the young lads on.” Sir Matt Busby Way had to be closed as it reached its 20,000 capacity as the awful rain that belted down in the hours prior to the parade eased off. Indeed, blue sky appeared for the send off, with Rio Ferdinand and Ashley Young leading the singing, including a tribute for Robin van Persie. “It feels amazing,” said the Dutchman, who is also virtually certain to win the Premier League Golden Boot. “It has been an unbelievable experience. It has been worth the wait. I have loved every single bit.” Wayne Rooney was also on the bus. However, he was not asked by MUTV to do any interviews and he endured a mixed reception from the fans. Press Associationcenter_img Ferguson retires after Sunday’s trip to West Brom but he was very much in charge for the trophy parade from Old Trafford into the centre of Manchester. The 71-year-old spoke to the thousands who gathered to watch the bus leave, setting his players a challenge they last achieved between 2007 and 2009. “We have a young squad, with a lot of good young players, who are going to get better,” he said. “The big test is to win it three times in a row. I hope the boys can do it.” last_img read more

Admire the way Virat Kohli chases in white-ball cricket: Steve Smith

first_imgNEW DELHI: Australia cricketer Steve Smith spoke about his admiration for India skipper Virat Kohli and stated that his white-ball numbers are simply incredible. Speaking during a live video session on Facebook, Smith also spoke about the much-anticipated Border-Gavaskar Trophy, scheduled to be played Down Under later this year. Smith and Kohli currently hold the top two positions respectively in ICC Test rankings and have been consistent across formats for a while now. Smith feels Kohli’s willingness to improve as a cricketer and his passion for the game has changed Indian cricket for the good.”I admire Virat (Kohli) a lot, he is an amazing player. You look at his record now… simply incredible. He has done so much for India in cricket. You know the way they play the game now and the sheer passion he has got for Indian cricket,” Smith said during a live interaction on Sony Ten Pit Stop show on their Facebook page. “His willingness to improve and get better. His body seems to have transformed over time and he looks so fit and powerful. “The one thing I admire about him is the way he chases in white-ball cricket. You look at his average in winning chases in ODIs and it is simply phenomenal,” he added. The two stalwarts of modern-day cricket will collide once again when India touchdown in Australia later this year. The four Tests of the series will be played at Gabba, Adelaide Oval, MCG and the SCG respectively starting December 3. Smith feels that India are well equipped in all departments and will pose a big threat for them in the series. The last time India toured the country, they won their first-ever Test series in Australia, who were without the services of Smith and David Warner at the time. “Plenty of challenges I think because India are an incredible team. Their batting line-up is so strong. They have got batters everywhere,” Smith said. IANSlast_img read more

West Indies Women Vs England Women… Taylor sparks WI Women to victory in 4th ODI

first_img…level series 2-2 with 42-run victorySkipper Stafanie Taylor produced a magnificent all-round performance and led the West Indies Women team to a heart-warming and fighting 42-run victory over their English counterparts,in the Fourth ODI contested at Sabina Park, Jamaica,yesterday.Taylor led by example and batted with great patience and skilful execution as she led West Indies to the highest score of the series- 223 for 6 in 50 overs.And despite a troubled left leg when she suffered cramps while batting, Taylor rose to the challenge and registered probably the greatest all-round performance ever seen in Women’s ODIs. She topscored with 84, then grabbed three wickets (3 for 22) and took two catches off her own bowling.Additionally, Taylor featured in two of the five run outs when England were restricted to 181 all out in 44.2 overs and allowed the West Indian team to celebrate an impressive victory over their much-highly rated rivals.Taylor deservedly was voted “Player of the Match” for her sterling contributions with both bat and ball.With the victory, West Indies levelled the series 2-2,and collected two important points which pushed them back into second spot in the ICC Championship title race and closer to one of the three other qualifying berths for the ICC’s World Cup next year in England.West Indies moved to 22 points, and is second to Australia, reigning 50-Overs World champions; who have already clinched one of the qualifying spots with 30 points. England is now in third with 21 while New Zealand is fourth on 20.Taylor topscored for West Indies with a match-winning 84,which was embellished with two sixes and six fours off 128 deliveries. Her batting brilliance also inspired her partners,especially opener Shaquana Quintyne, who contributed 41 (1×6 and 2x4s off 72 balls); and Merissa Aguilleira, who slammed a quickfire 32 that was studded with four fours off 33 balls.Together,they carried the attack to the English bowlers and posted decent partnerships that allowed the homesters to grab the initiative. Taylor shared a 69-run second wicket partnership with Quintyne and then added 36 for the third with Deandra Dottin who made 18 (2x4s off 18 balls).Quintyne departed at 81 for 2 in 23.2 overs while Dottin exited at 117 for three in 30.1 overs.The 25-year-old talented Taylor chalked up her 25th Career ODI fifty and with Aguilleira,carried West Indies to 162 for 4 in 39.5 overs.The WI captain added a further 31-run for the fifth wicket with Britney Cooper who made nine.She missed getting her sixth ODI career century when she offered a catch to Heather Knight.However,West Indies were well-placed at 209 for six in 47.6 overs.Shemaine Campbelle (9 not out) and StacyAnn King (9 not out) pushed the total to 223 to complete the 50-overs innings.In reply, openers Lauren Winfield and Tammy Beaumont laid the platform for England to have a great chance to win the match and seal the five-match series win with one match still to be played on Wednesday at the same venue. Together,they attacked all the West India bowlers and posted an enterprising 95-run first wicket partnership in 19.1 overs.And it took the effort of Taylor to check the English momentum when she accepted a stinging return catch offered by the aggressive Beaumont who made 57. Winfield was joined by her captain Heather Knight and they posted 38 for the third wicket when Winfield was the first of five run-outs in the England’s innings which went into decline after being ahead of the required run rate.Winfield was run out by Afy Fletcher for 51 while Knight contributed 36,as the remaining batters wilted under pressure and attempted suicidal singles only to find the West Indian fielders as deadly accurate as they can be and effected four more run outs.England lost all ten wickets for an addition of 84 runs and their innings closed at 181 all out in 44.2 overs, with 34 deliveries to spare.It was an exciting victory for the West Indians who fought bravely and never doubted themselves that they can beat the English women again as they did in the second ODI at Trelawny Stadium, Florence Hall last week.The fifth and final match on Wednesday will be the decider. West Indies should be the more buoyant outfit following their impressive showing yesterday.last_img read more