Nearly three dozen educators from all regions of the Commonwealth convened in Richmond today for a meeting of a new state “Teacher Cabinet.” The panel was established by Governor McDonnell to strategize and make recommendations for education reforms. The Governor plans to incorporate their ideas into an agenda for the next General Assembly session.
The teachers represent a wide spectrum of grades and specialties and were eager to advise the Governor about a real-world perspective. McDonnell called them excellent, experienced educators.
Virginia’s school boards would have until 2017 to plan for complete student access to electronic textbooks IF they decide to use them … under a bill recommended by a General Assembly advisory panel. The measure aims to close a digital divide that’s already opened up among some students who don’t have access to e-textbooks at home. While the solution is more complex than it seems, panel members say fixing the problem can’t wait.
Former UVa climate scientist Michael Mann’s work at the university is again the subject of a court battle and Virginia is working on a database that’s making some privacy advocates uncomfortable. Those stories have been among the most clicked over the past week at the Virginia Public Access Project’s VaNews link on vpap.org.
While Virginia has made significant strides to confront human trafficking, it’s still a growing problem—so much so that Governor McDonnell hosted the first-ever state Human Trafficking Summit. What those in attendance learned is that while Virginia-especially Northern Virginia—is still one of the largest hubs for traffickers, law enforcement is quickly gaining ground.
When the Virginia General Assembly approved new transportation funding this year, it also allocated 2-and-a-half billion dollars more than VDOT's previous six-year transportation improvement plan. That is allowing the agency to focus aggressively on some badly needed construction projects statewide to relieve congestion, make repairs, and build new lanes. But it will also mean some headaches for motorists traveling on some of the busiest stretches of Virginia.