Reforming the SOLs
8:02 am
Fri January 16, 2015

Education Reforms and Proposals

Virginia's school superintendents are applauding the General Assembly’s recent efforts to reduce the number of standardized SOL tests administered to students from 34 to 27.  But they also say that more reforms are needed moving forward—and they’ve outlined them in a new Blueprint for the Future of Education. 

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Part 3 of 3
7:48 am
Fri January 16, 2015

Guantanamo Bay: Conclusions from the Gulag of Our Time

The National Guard Flickr
Credit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Of nearly 780 detainees brought to a military prison at Guantanamo Bay, most have been sent back to their countries without charges being filed.  Nine died in detention.  After 5 Yemeni prisoners were released to Estonia and Oman yesterday, 122 now remain, and more than half could be released if the Obama administration finds a country that will take them.  Sandy Hausman spoke with Michael Lehnert, a retired Marine General who served for many years in Virginia before building the prison at GTMO.

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Author Interview
2:36 pm
Thu January 15, 2015

Fictionalized Politics Close to Home

A Blacksburg writer is out with a new novel of political intrigue set very close to home. Like many of his previous books, Michael Abraham’s latest gets its title from an actual town. This one is called “Orange,  Virginia.” 

Michael Abraham writes fiction, non-fiction and political essays.  This time the Blacksburg native has done a combination of all three.

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Menhaden are Back
8:30 am
Thu January 15, 2015

More Menhaden

Atlantic Menhaden. Photo by Flickr user Brian Gratwicke.
Credit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Atlantic Menhaden, the tiny fish that, two years ago, created big trouble between Chesapeake Bay environmentalists and commercial fishermen, is surfacing once more. Scientists have found new data that may prove there's more of the fish than once thought. 

Menhaden is eaten by fish and birds; used as bait by watermen and anglers, and rendered to make fish oil supplements. They travel up and down the coast, in and out of bays making it difficult for biologists to ensure they're not being overfished.

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General Assembly
8:21 am
Thu January 15, 2015

Lawmakers Debate How to Handle Joe Morrissey's Re-election

The 2015 General Assembly convened on Wednesday with an undercurrent of drama.  Ostracized by his former party leaders and denounced by others, newly re-elected Democrat-turned-Independent Delegate Joe Morrissey left his jail cell and returned to his legislative office.  Morrissey acknowledges that many colleagues don't want him there after his misdemeanor conviction.  But the embattled delegate says his constituents DO want him there -and he's preparing to fight for that. 

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Handcuffed 4-Year-Old
7:54 am
Thu January 15, 2015

Handcuffed Preschooler Reinstated in Greene

After some public uproar and contact from a civil liberties group, the four-year-old who was cuffed and shackled by a Greene County school resource officer will be invited back to school with his record wiped clean. The fight, however, goes on.

The Charlottesville-based Rutherford Institute is claiming a victory of sorts on behalf  of the misbehaving pre-schooler who was hauled out of class, handcuffed, placed in a squad car, and then-- back at the sheriff's office-- locked in leg irons.

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Patricia Murphy is an award-winning reporter at KUOW Public Radio in Seattle focusing on military affairs, veterans' issues and criminal justice. She began her career at WBUR Boston in 1994 and has worked at KUOW since 2000.

Part 2 of 3
4:00 am
Thu January 15, 2015

Guantanamo Bay: Candid Conversation on Conflict & Command

Major General Michael Lehnert
Credit University of Richmond

Major General Michael Lehnert spent  years commanding U.S. Marines in Virginia – but he also spent a hundred days at Guantanamo Bay – building and running a prison for alleged terrorists captured in Afghanistan.  

Legal experts told the Bush administration that GTMO  was not American soil, so our legal protections would not apply there.

Lehnert told an audience at the University of Richmond that he often disagreed with the White House.

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Lindsey Moon joined Wisconsin Public Radio in Madison as the Lee Ester News Fellow in August 2012. She comes to WPR from Iowa Public Radio where she was a reporter/producer working on both investigative reporting projects and the network's two locally produced daily talk programs. She is a contributor to the Iowa Center for Public Affairs Journalism and is interested in health issues, sustainability, as well as arts and culture.

Lindsey has won awards from both the Northwest Broadcast News Association and Public Radio News Directors Incorporated for investigative and general reporting. She is a 2012 graduate of the University of Iowa with degrees in journalism and anthropology.

IT at VT
9:25 am
Wed January 14, 2015

Keeping Hackers Out

Flickr user Onlin Branding
Credit https://www.flickr.com/help/general/#147

Recent hacking incidents have put Cyber Security on the agenda.  The President will talk about it in his State of the Union Address next week.  So what can you do to promote cyber safety? 

Be unique.  Be secure.  Change your password.  Those and other warnings are plastered on the walls at the Information Technology Office at Virginia Tech. Experts say the biggest challenge is that things change so quickly in cyber space.  But one thing is clear, words like safety and ‘security’ now apply to the virtual world as much as, the physical world.

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