a new wave of free school applications, building on the 212,000 places created by free schools since 2010 £50 million funding to expand the number of places at existing good or outstanding selective schools alongside measures to give more disadvantaged pupils the opportunity to attend these schools new support for faith schools where there is demand for good school places fresh agreement with the independent schools sector to help improve outcomes for pupils of all backgrounds Parents and Teachers for Excellence Director Mark Lehain said: Today’s moves will build on the hard work of teachers and the success of the government’s reforms, creating 825,000 new school places since 2010 with 1.9 million more children now in good or outstanding schools.Education Secretary Damian Hinds said: We are very pleased that, like other good and outstanding schools, selective schools now have access to a fund to allow them to expand their premises. This is particularly important at a time when there are increasing numbers of pupils reaching secondary age and such high demand from parents for selective school places. We look forward to working with the Department for Education through the memorandum of understanding, to continue and further extend the work that member schools have undertaken in recent years, to increase access for disadvantaged pupils and to support other schools to raise standards for all children. Grammar School Heads’ Association Chief Executive Jim Skinner said: New good school places in areas where they are needed most will give more children from all backgrounds the world-class education they deserve, under plans announced today (11 May 2018) by Education Secretary Damian Hinds.The package of measures will create more school places, giving parents greater choice and raising education standards – including in disadvantaged areas. It will include: Today’s announcements follow the schools that work for everyone consultation, which set out the government’s ambition to ensure there is a good school place for every child, whatever their background. The measures will create more places across the diverse school system, giving families greater choice and raising standards for pupils.Wave 13 of free school applications to deliver further innovation and parent choiceThis latest applications round will target areas where there is a demand for places and a need to help raise school standards, giving more families access to a good school place. Nearly 400 free schools are open.More places at good grammar schools and support for disadvantaged pupilsThe government is launching the Selective Schools Expansion Fund, with £50 million available for 2018 to 2019 so that existing selective schools can expand their premises to create more places. This will give parents greater choice and give more children, from all backgrounds, access to a good school place. Schools will have to submit a fair access and partnership plan setting out what action they will take to increase admissions of disadvantaged pupils.Research shows pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds attain better results in selective schools and around 60% of these schools already prioritise these children in their admissions. For example, King Edward VI in Birmingham actively encourage more pupils from less privileged backgrounds to join their schools, including considering 11+ results for disadvantaged pupils separately to their non-disadvantaged counterparts. A memorandum of understanding with the Grammar School Heads’ Association has also been unveiled, outlining its commitment to widen access and work with local schools to raise standards for all children.Faith schools to help meet local demand for school placesThere are many good or outstanding faith schools and more want to open. The government will retain the 50% cap on faith admissions for free schools but will develop a scheme to help create new voluntary-aided (VA) schools for faith and other providers to meet local demand, supported by capital funding. The VA route already allows for schools to apply to open with up to 100% faith based admissions. The department will work with local authorities to create these schools where they are needed, subject to a 10% contribution from the provider to the capital costs.To support the measures to promote social cohesion announced in the integrated communities strategy, these schools – as all schools do – will continue to be expected to play an active role in their communities. This could include twinning with other schools and ensuring diversity on the governing board. Examples of schools already doing this include St Joseph’s Catholic Junior School in Leyton, which has a strong record of working with local Muslim, Jewish, Christian and non-faith schools.Universities and independent schools building partnerships with state schools to raise attainment and widen accessFollowing the schools that work for everyone consultation, we have established a dedicated unit that works with universities and independent schools to develop and strengthen partnerships with state schools to help raise attainment and aspiration for all pupils. A number of institutions have already come forward to do this including independent and state schools working together to support school improvement. The Department for Education has today published a joint understanding with the Independent Schools Council, setting out how it will work in partnership with state schools and, in particular, help pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds. The higher education sector is also supporting these objectives and, in February, the Office for Students set out what is expected of universities with regard to participation and access.This package of measures builds on the government’s support for the most disadvantaged children and the drive to raise academic standards in poorer areas of the country, including: Children only get one chance at an education and they deserve the best, wherever they live and whatever their background. Standards are rising in our schools and we’ve created hundreds of thousands of new places since 2010 but we want to make sure every family can access a good school. By creating new schools where they are needed most and helping all great schools to grow, we can give parents greater choice in looking at schools that are right for their family – and give children of all backgrounds access to a world-class education. a plan to improve social mobility, boosting opportunities for all young people the £72 million opportunity areas programme to raise standards and improve outcomes in twelve disadvantaged areas of the country steps to transform education for children with additional needs more than £45 million awarded to successful multi-academy trusts to help tackle underperformance and improve schools in areas that lack capacity, particularly in disadvantaged areas of the country The new wave of free schools announced today is fantastic news for communities across the country. Already hundreds of towns and tens of thousands of families have benefitted from the addition of great new schools to our system, and the next wave, targeted at areas that haven’t yet had this, will ensure the benefits are felt wider still.
Last year, the Neal Casal-led group Circles Around The Sun made their debut by composing the psychedelic setbreak music at the Grateful Dead’s “Fare Thee Well” celebration. The music spawned something of a cult following, so much so that the band released their instruments as an album in 2015. Around that time, Casal said that the band would never perform live.As fans already know, that sentiment changed when Circles Around The Sun appeared on the Lockn’ Festival lineup. The band treated fans to an otherworldly performance, capturing their unique compositions with psychedelic overtones for the late night crowd. (Watch it here). Casal, along with bassist Dan Horne, drummer Mark Levy, and keyboardist Adam MacDougall, put on one of the best performances of the weekend.Fortunately for us, the band will soon be active again! Circles Around The Sun announced a new performance on November 23rd, hitting the Brooklyn Bowl for their first-ever venue performance and second-ever live performance ever! Tickets and more information can be found here.
Today, Mike Gordon announced that he would be selling off some of his gear that he’s used on the road and in the studio. On Thursday at 11 am (EST), the Phish bassist will replenish The Official Mike Gordon Reverb Shop—a virtual store of his in partnership with Reverb.com, an online music-gear marketplace—with road- and studio-proven guitars, bass guitars, and more going up for grabs.Mike Gordon Covers Tom Petty’s “Mary Jane’s Last Dance” In Michigan [Video]As Gordon noted in a press released, “I’m not a collector per sé, but I do like to find instruments and sounds that are unique and special — both old and new. So I’ve accumulated a smattering of interesting ones, especially for the sake of experimenting in the studio and, sometimes, to mix it up on stage. . . . I also really have a deep appreciation for builders that innovate and strive for aesthetic beauty and cool sounds.”Trey Anastasio Talks Languedoc Guitars On New Episode Of Tom Marshall’s PodcastOne item for sale that many Phish fans are sure to be excited about is a guitar built by Paul Languedoc, Phish’s longtime luthier, as the guitars already are rare (Reverb.com has only had one other Languedoc posted on its marketplace). Gordon will be selling his Paul Languedoc G2 6 String Hollowbody Electric Guitar, which is constructed with a spruce top for a more acoustic tone. As Gordon said of the guitar, “I’ve had it since 2001 and played it — or had people play it —on most of my solo albums and on albums with Leo Kottke, just in little moments. . . . I love how Paul makes his own tools even, then uses such an incredible craftsmanship to make guitars that are like art pieces. Plus there’s that undeniable tone.”As noted in the press release, other instruments of Gordon that will be going up for sale include:A Turner Renaissance Electric Hollowbody Bass that was used largely in the studio and served as Gordon’s only fretless for many years.A Lakland Hollowbody Deluxe Electric 4 String Bass used for many songs on Sixty Six Steps, the second studio album from Gordon and Leo Kottke. According to Gordon, the Lakland is “an amazing example of a retro sound with modern reliability.”A 1960’s Danelectro Silvertone 1448 that Gordon “needed to have” after playing a similar guitar in Marco Benevento’s living room.The Official Mike Gordon Reverb Shop will stock these instruments this Thursday at 11 am (EST). Good luck! Plus, check out these photos of what you can expect from the sale below. [Cover Photo: Steve Rose]
Fletcher Allen Releases Year-to-Date and Second Quarter Financial ResultsFletcher Allen has reported an operating income of $5.7 million for the first two quarters of the 2004 fiscal year. This includes an operating income of $1.8 million for the second quarter. The second quarter covers the period beginning January 1st and ending March 31, 2004. This marks nine consecutive months of operating incomes that tracked budgeted expectations.Second Quarter ResultsOperating income for the second quarter was $164,563 better than budget and $5.2 million better than the corresponding quarter in FY2003. Net operating revenues for the quarter were $144 million, $1 million above budgeted revenues. However, the organization’s operating expenses for the quarter were $142.2 million, $900,000 above budget, resulting in an operating income of $1.8 million and an operating margin of 1.2% for the second quarter. By comparison, the organization lost $3.5 million in the second quarter of FY 2003.Year-to-date ResultsFor the year to date, the $5.7 million net income from operations was well abovethe budgeted $536,717 for the period, and produced an operating margin of 2.0%. A yearago, the organization saw a two-quarter loss of $8.4 million. Operating expenses for the first half of the fiscal year were below budget by $2.8 million year-to-date.Improved processes that were part of the budget recovery plan implemented in mid-FY 2003 were incorporated into the FY 2004 budget and the organization’s positive financial results are, to a large extent, the product of those changes. However, expenses began to increase above budget in the second quarter.Key volume measures year-to-date were mixed. Total inpatient discharges were above budget by 331 (3.0%). Combined Inpatient and Outpatient Days, a measure of the number of patients in the hospital each day, were 1.6% below budget, and physician office visits were 5.7% below budget, but substantially higher than last year for the same quarter. At the end of the quarter, Days Cash on Hand increased to 89.8 days, 2.9 days above the first quarter’s results.The institution began making its quarterly financials public with the release of the first quarter results for FY 2003 in February 2003. The audited financial statements for the years ended September 30, 2002 and 2003, as well as the quarterly results for FY 2003 and the first two quarters of FY 2004, are available on the Fletcher Allen Web site at www.fletcherallen.org(link is external).
By Claudia Sánchez-Bustamante/Diálogo March 13, 2017 From March 7-9, the Inter-American Defense College (IADC) and Chile’s National Academy of Political Science and Strategic Studies (ANEPE), hosted the 2017 seminar on “Peace and Security from a Gender Perspective: From Policy to Strategy” at Fort Lesley J. McNair, in Washington, D.C. The initiative, started in 2016, is an effort to promote United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325, on Women, Peace, and Security. This year’s event brought together participants from the defense, human rights, public security, and women’s issues arenas in partner nations including Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Dominican Republic, Mexico, Panama, Trinidad and Tobago, the United States, and Uruguay to discuss topics of gender integration in developing security, an international framework for the protection of human rights, and the application of a gendered human security perspective on emergencies and humanitarian assistance, among others. U.S. Navy Admiral Kurt Tidd, commander of U.S. Southern Command, kicked off the event highlighting the importance of gender integration in strategy and policy. “Now, more than ever, the issue of effective gender integration is connected to the present and future capabilities of our armed forces and national security institutions,” said Adm. Tidd, from his perspective as an operational combatant commander. “Right now, the men and women of our security forces are engaged in a wide spectrum of missions, across a wide range of conditions, all over the world,” he stated. “The operations they’re serving in are a far cry from the types of missions most of us in uniform served in –or even contemplated– at the beginning of our careers.” Adm. Tidd highlighted the ever-changing conditions of the armed forces today. “Even peacekeeping has changed,” he pointed out. “Today, two-thirds of all peacekeepers are serving in active conflict zones. Peacekeepers from our hemisphere are supporting UN missions on four different continents: they’re deployed to Kashmir, Cyprus, Lebanon, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Liberia, Cote D’Ivoire, the Sinai, Mali, and Haiti. At the same time, U.S troops are involved around the world in operations as diverse as counter terrorism missions in Afghanistan, supporting coalition operations in Syria and Iraq, and building partner capacity right here in our own hemisphere,” he reflected. “And no matter where our men and women are serving, the security environment they face is unlike any we’ve seen before,” he added. “It’s more unpredictable, far more dangerous, and extraordinarily complex.” The SOUTHCOM commander listed specific examples to illustrate today’s realities. “New technologies are fielded faster than ever before –by our forces, and by those who seek to do us harm. Technologies are used in ways that were unthinkable a few years ago. Violent state actors, non-state actors, non-state Islamist extremists like ISIS and criminal networks now operate across geographic boundaries and domains. The information landscape is more crowded and competitive than ever before. We’ve seen new social media platforms extend the reach, scale, and speech in which both real and fake news move… This new reality directly influences the operational environment and collapses the decision space of our civilian leaders. Tactics and techniques continue changing in ways that pose enormous ethical and cultural challenges, from the use of female and child suicide bombers, to entire families traveling to Syria and Iraq to join ISIS. The battle field is literally moving under our feet.” Adm. Tidd posed important questions on how to tackle this change. “Keeping pace with this change involves asking ourselves how our forces need to adapt, and how our cultures and institutions need to change to support our forces,” he said. “This means evolving the way we unleash the full talent, initiative, and potential of our men and women. This means evolving how we cultivate capable, adaptable, and creative leaders who can thrive in this challenging world of change and complexity,” he continued. “This is why effective gender integration, and the integration of gender perspectives into military operations, is an absolute imperative for each of our armed forces and security institutions. If we are to successfully adapt to meet the demands of the 21st century security environment.” The SOUTHCOM commander stressed the importance of adapting quickly in order to achieving operational effectiveness. “It’s how we attain and maintain our respective competitive advantages,” he said. “Integrating women and gender perspectives into military operations is part of that adaptation.” For example, Adm. Tidd listed UN studies that have shown that female peacekeepers improve the understanding of the operational environment, especially as it relates to the issues affecting women and children in conflict and post-conflict societies. “As we’ve seen in Bosnia, Cambodia, El Salvador, Namibia, and South Africa, the presence of female peacekeepers in our formations increases access to and support for local women affected by conflict, improving the likelihood of attaining a lasting peace,” he said. “In our own military, we saw how the integration of female cultural support teams (CST) into U.S. Special Operations Forces units made for a fundamentally stronger, more capable, and flexible fighting force.” According to Adm. Tidd, “after action reports revealed those CST were highly effective at de-escalating tense situations. They were uniquely placed to protect women and children when raids turned deadly, enhancing the legitimacy of U.S. and coalition forces. Any by interacting with a portion of the population that was previously off limits to U.S. troops, they were able to gather critical information and intelligence about weapons caches and insurgent hiding places, improving force protection of U.S. and coalition troops and the situational awareness of our commanders in the field.” Adm. Tidd urged the conferees to look beyond the simple question of how to integrate women into military operations. In order to begin the conversation of gender integration, the Admiral remarked the importance of remembering the fundamental difference between the mere inclusion of women as participants in the nations’ militaries, and the recognition of women as equals. “The first is window dressing, meeting a quota, and advancing an agenda,” he said. “The second is transformative for our forces and our institutions.” He was poignant in that it is not about looking for the right number of women, but rather looking for the “best teammates –those men and women with the irresistible drive to contribute to mission success, who have the right team ethos and who possess a diverse way of looking at problems and coming up with unexpected, creative solutions” to join in the conversation, the decision making process, and the ranks of the militaries and security structures working toward regional peace and stability. Effective gender integration, he said, is really part of a larger question: How do we attract, develop, and retain the best people, with the right skillsets, to meet the ever accelerating demands of military operations in the 21st century? To answer that, Adm. Tidd asked the audience to think about the real-world impact of the strategies they develop, and what those mean for training and human capital development pipelines. “I can only speak from my U.S. perspective, but the issue of standards tends to dominate any discussion of gender integration,” he said. “In the U.S., we’ve had a lot of talk about whether women can meet the physical standards required for combat. In my opinion, there should be no compromises in the name of equality and opportunity,” he stated. “It undermines what we’re trying to do, and reinforces the stereotypes we’re fighting against.” Adm. Tidd assured the audience that all the women he has worked with in the course of his career reject the idea of double standards. “They want to receive the same treatment, and have the same opportunities as their male team members. They want to be held to one standard, a mission standard, not a gender standard,” he said. “We all recognize that the readiness of our forces and the security of our nations depend on the maintenance of tough standards that reflect the mission, not the gender,” he added. “Female military professionals, exactly like their male counterparts, want to be judged on the basis of their grit, their determination, and tenacity–the things that matter most. The things we prize in all our team members.” Adm. Tidd brought to light that the U.S. Marine Corps has examined the performance gap between men and women on combat fitness tests. The results showed that the primary obstacle for the majority of women was upper body strength. However, he also cited previous studies which documented that women and men who are strength trained can increase their performance on combat-related tasks. “The fact that some female marines could complete the most challenging upper body strength tests suggests those barriers are neither inherent nor biological,” he highlighted. “So when it comes to standards, we must think in terms of gender-blind standards… focus on specific out comes, not on specific genders,” he added. “Our U.S. military is still working through this,” he added. “We haven’t figured it all out yet either.” But he was clear on that “whatever it involves, it needs to include opportunities for all our men and women to train for the jobs they aspire towards.” In addition to discussing the importance of training men and women physically, Adm. Tidd appended that it is also paramount to consider their mental and emotional training as well. “Excelling in the complex 21st century security environment is not simply a matter of physical strength. It’s about the ideas we generate, the creativity we cultivate, and the problems we solve,” he underscored. “Ultimately, it’s about the effective teams we build.” Adm. Tidd was clear on that “we need more comprehensive measurements of intellectual, professional, and character attributes,” he said. “We need to develop women and men who excel in complexity, anticipate change, recognize opportunity, and adapt to meet new challenges. The complex environments our forces face demand critical thinking, flexibility, and creativity. Our mission success depends on it,” he highlighted. “Ultimately, gender integration has nothing to do with leveling the playing field. It’s about making sure we put our nest possible team on that playing field,” he remarked. But the Admiral also called on “strategic patience” to continue to develop and achieve more and better gender integration. “The small numbers of women in some of our ranks–especially in the combat arms–doesn’t mean this isn’t worth pursuing. Developing the force we need takes time. It’s not going to happen overnight …Today’s dialogue, and others like it, will help us develop the necessary strategies and policies, adapt our doctrines, revise our training guidance, and retool our learning curriculums.” Adm. Tidd ended his speech with three poignant examples to illustrate gender integration and remind the audience that these are “much harder to see, or measure, or quantify, but are nevertheless incredibly important to the ultimate success of effective gender integration”: “Imagine what a young Haitian girl thought when she saw female peacekeepers from Uruguay, Peru, and Brazil patrolling the streets of Port-au-Prince, providing security, and delivering medical care to Haitian citizens and helping the country recover from the devastating earthquake. Imagine what a young Afghan girl thought when she saw our cultural support teams taking fire and saving lives, not just American soldiers, but Afghan civilians. Imagine what a young American school girl thought when she heard that three women graduated from the U.S. Army’s notoriously tough ranger school–achieving a level of leadership training that few men will ever accomplish. Or what she thought when she heard that for the first time, a fully qualified woman has been selected to serve in our ranger regiment, an elite unit that conducts some of the most challenging and precise offensive operations undertaken by the U.S. military.” “The women serving in our forces today are incredibly powerful sources of inspiration for the future,” he stated. “Because those young Haitian, Afghan, and American girls can see it, they know that if they prepare effectively, they can be it. Like the men they serve beside, the women serving in our forces today are pioneers of a new generation of military professionals – the women serving in our forces today aren’t a milestone. They’re a motivation–an inspiration–for all of us,” he concluded.
The Equal Opportunities Law Section has come up with a plan to increase its membership and bring it into conformance with Bar rules.Program Evaluation Committee Chair Richard Tanner told the Bar Board of Governors in May the section has had difficulty meeting membership requirements. Bar policies require sections to have a membership of at least 1 percent of Bar membership. PEC has been examining the Bar’s newest section under a policy that has new sections reviewed after their first three years.“The problem is this group has not been able to meet the membership requirements we set several years ago,” Tanner said, noting the board had granted the section an extension to address the problem. “I can report happily they are working very, very hard to come up with a solution to be in compliance with the rule.“I think they have a core group that justifies our considered extension for time for them to address this.”Another option would be for the group to lose its section status and become a Bar committee.According to information presented to the board, the section is implementing a personal solicitation campaign and working through minority and specialty bar associations to recruit new members. It is also planning a one-day retreat this summer to focus on membership recruitment and has revised its mission statement to broaden the section’s appeal.The section has among its goals the education and support of young minority lawyers and law students, including helping them network with law firms and corporations, and educating the Florida legal community about the benefits of diversity.“We’ve been duly impressed with the efforts they’ve put into rectifying their problems,” Tanner said. For more information about the section, contact Yvonne Sherron at (850) 561-5620. Equal Opportunities Law Section seeks more members July 1, 2003 Regular News Equal Opportunities Law Section seeks more members
Spring Break is right around the corner, and if you have kids – or you’re a kid at heart – you might be making plans to visit a theme park. But a day riding roller coasters and eating funnel cakes can be very expensive. Here are some tips to save on your next theme park trip.Go Two Days or MoreMost theme park price-per-day rates drop significantly when you buy two days or more. For example, according to an article earlier this year in The New York Times, it costs $89.99 to go to Busch Gardens once, but only $10 more to buy an annual pass that lets you visit unlimited times.Buy tickets onlineMost parks offer a discount if you purchase tickets ahead of time on their website instead of showing up to buy tickets at the gate. At Six Flags Magic Mountain, a daily ticket costs $84.99 at the gate. But if you buy it online and pick your date, rates start at just $59.99.Be flexible about your datesSure, everybody wants to visit Disneyland on Christmas Day, but most parks hike up the price of tickets on their most popular days to avoid overcrowding. If you are willing to visit early in the season when school is still in session – especially on a weekday – you can save quite a bit. At Sesame Place theme park in Pennsylvania, between April 28 and May 25, daily tickets are only $45, much less than the regular $75 price.Ask your credit unionMost sites that claim to offer discount codes usually don’t work, but if you’re a credit union member, you might qualify for a good deal. And, if you use a credit card that offers cash back on all purchases or rewards, you can save even more.Use social mediaFollow your favorite theme park on social media and you may be lucky enough to snag tickets during flash sales. At the very least, you’ll be notified of special promotions and discounts.Spring for Fast PassesAny deal that keeps you from waiting in line means you’ll spend more time enjoying the rides and less time standing in line. As much as theme park tickets cost these days, that’s important. Usually, the cost to upgrade is well worth the extra fun you get in return. 38SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Heather Anderson Heather Anderson covers consumer financial news for CUInsight.com, offering readers tips on budgeting, setting and achieving financial goals, and developing a healthy relationship with money. She is co-founder of … Web: www.financialfeed.com Details
– Advertisement – The court’s six conservatives seemed sympathetic to arguments made by Kyle Hawkins, the Texas Solicitor General, and acting Justice Department Solicitor General Jeffrey Wall that the individual mandate became unconstitutional when it was stripped of an accompanying penalty.But Roberts and Kavanaugh suggested that would not doom the rest of the law.“I think it’s hard for you to argue that Congress intended the entire act to fall if the mandate was struck down,” Roberts told Hawkins. Roberts was appointed by President George W. Bush.Roberts acknowledged that some Republican lawmakers may have wanted the Supreme Court to strike down the law, “but that’s not our job.”Kavanaugh told Donald Verrilli, who was solicitor general under former President Barack Obama, that “I tend to agree with you that this is a very straightforward case” and that under the court’s precedents “we would excise the mandate and leave the rest of the act in place.”Later, Kavanaugh told Hawkins that it “sure seems” like Congress in 2017 wanted to lower the individual mandate penalty without getting rid of the Affordable Care Act’s other provisions, such as its protections for those with preexisting conditions.The court’s three liberals, Justice Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan are expected to side with California and a coalition of other Democratic-led states that are defending Obamacare. It takes five votes to gain a majority on the nine-judge panel.Two lower courts sided with Texas, including the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals court, that the individual mandate was unlawful. The appeals court did not say whether the rest of the Affordable Care Act would also have to be struck down.Arguments, which were scheduled to last for 80 minutes, began at 10 a.m. ET and were continuing around 12 p.m. ET.A decision is expected toward the end of June.The case is known as California v. Texas, No. 19-840.This is breaking news. Check back for updates. – Advertisement – A demonstrator holds a sign in front of the US Supreme Court in Washington, DC, on November 10, 2020, as the high court opened arguments in the long-brewing case over the constitutionality of the 2010 Affordable Care Act, under which then-president Barack Obama’s government sought to extend health insurance to people who could not afford it.Nicholas Kamm | AFP | Getty Images The Affordable Care Act seems likely to withstand its third challenge at the Supreme Court.Several of the court’s conservatives on Tuesday expressed an unwillingness to strike down the landmark legislation during oral arguments in a case brought by red states seeking to eliminate the law.Chief Justice John Roberts, who cast the key vote in 2012 upholding Obamacare, and Justice Brett Kavanaugh, an appointee of President Donald Trump, both suggested that the court may cast aside a challenged provision of the law, known as the individual mandate, while leaving the rest of it standing.- Advertisement – The individual mandate provision, as enacted in 2010, requires most Americans to obtain health insurance or pay a penalty. The GOP-controlled Congress reduced the penalty to $0 in 2017.The Supreme Court upheld the mandate in 2012 under Congress’s taxing power, but Texas and other Republican-led states argued that the reduction of the penalty made that justification no longer workable, and as a result the whole Affordable Care Act must be struck down. The Trump administration, via the Department of Justice, argued in favor of the red states’ challenge.Health-care activists warned that if the Supreme Court struck down the Affordable Care Act, more than 20 million people could lose their insurance. The dispute, which was argued in the shadow of last week’s presidential election, was a central focus of Democrats during the confirmation hearings for Justice Amy Coney Barrett last month.- Advertisement –
Meanwhile, Vice Mayor El Cid Familiaran, head of the City Inter-Agency Task Force COVID-19 appealed to the Deped to consider online learning in case they want to open the classes. BACOLOD City – Citing safety and health concerns of students and school personnel amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak, local officials in this capital city and in Negros Occidental seek to postpone the opening of the school year slated in August. Yesterday, the city council passed a resolution urging the Department of Education (DepEd) through its chief Secretary Leonor Briones to defer the opening of classes of schools under its jurisdiction beyond the scheduled date. He further added everyone should always practice caution and play it safe in order to avoid contracting the virus. Councilor Renecito Novero, author of the resolution, said DepEd should avoid classes which practice face-to-face scheme of instruction until the threat of COVID-19 considerably subsides. The proposal also included the end of the school year on April 30, 2021, along with the cancellation of the Palarong Pambansa and Schools Press Conference./PN Based on the DepEd’s proposal, school year 2020-2021 was supposed to begin on Aug. 24. Classes may be conducted both physically and virtually depending on the situation of the COVID-19 pandemic. In a press conference on Wednesday morning, Lacson said he would prefer that the opening of classes be postponed for at least a year until a vaccine or cure against the coronavirus disease or Covid-19 is widely available. BY MAE SINGUAY and DOMINIQUE GABRIEL BAÑAGA “Better be safe than sorry,” Familiaran stressed. “For me, one year of rest is not so bad. At least, it is safer by then, hopefully there is already a vaccine and cure,” Lacson said. For his part, Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson, said he is against DepEd’s move to resume classes in August this year.
Pittsburgh’s Tyler Boyd answers a question during a news conference at the Atlantic Coast Conference Football kickoff in Greensboro, N.C., Sunday, July 20, 2014. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton)GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) – It’s been a while since the Atlantic Coast Conference entered a season with this much buzz.The realigned league has the defending national champion, a Heisman Trophy winner and a national coach of the year.The ACC stumbled through much of the BCS era, but enters the first year of the four-team college football playoff with a secure future among the power-five conferences and boasts a favorite to contend for another title in Florida State.“I think we’ve got as good a shot as anybody to be in the top four the first year,” commissioner John Swofford said Sunday, the first of the league’s two-day preseason kickoff event.“We will have teams in the mix to be in the four-team playoff every year, and any time we don’t have one, we’ll be disappointed.”At least on paper, that sure looks like the Seminoles.The defending BCS champions are trying to keep themselves at a high level. The rest of the league is hoping to piggyback off Florida State’s success, hopeful that the Seminoles’ rising tide will lift the league’s other 13 boats.“Anybody can shock this ACC … and that’s what impresses me,” North Carolina quarterback Marquise Williams said. “Everybody’s going to come to compete this year – everybody feels like they have a lot of energy and a lot of confidence since Florida State won the national championship. That builds a lot of conference teams’ hype and getting more swag.”The ACC won a total of two BCS games from 1998-2011 before combining to win three in the past two years.Two of them belong to the Seminoles, who captured the final BCS championship back in January when Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston led a touchdown drive in the final seconds to beat Auburn.Boston College defensive back Dominique Williams called it “a good look for the ACC” and Winston began his hour-long sit-down session with reporters by asking them to clap.“How does it feel to have an ACC team come in here with a national championship?” Winston asked. “Can we get us, the ACC, a round of applause? Finally. We took it away from the SEC, man. It’s a blessing.”That wasn’t all. Duke’s David Cutcliffe earned a handful of national coach of the year awards after guiding the Blue Devils to a school-record 10 wins and a most unlikely Coastal Division title.And the ACC boasted more than a few individual award winners: Walter Camp and Davey O’Brien (Winston), Doak Walker (Boston College’s Andre Williams), Outland and Lombardi (Pittsburgh’s Aaron Donald) and Lou Groza (Roberto Aguayo, Florida State).But that’s in the past. Now it’s almost time to find out who can get it done this year.Will it be league newcomer Louisville, the 2013 national champion in men’s basketball and replacement for Maryland that has won 23 football games in its final two years in the old Big East and American Athletic conferences?“You do good in one sport, the next sport, it’s like, ‘OK, since our school does this in one sport, we’re going to go ahead and show that we can do it too,” Cardinals defensive end Lorenzo Mauldin said. “Basketball does good, that means football season is right around the corner. Football season has a follow-up with basketball. … It’s just an ongoing change but we all want to be great at the University of Louisville.”Will it be Miami and Duke Johnson, who’s coming back from a broken ankle yet still looks like the league’s top offensive player not named Winston? Johnson rushed for 920 yards and six touchdowns before breaking his ankle in the Florida State loss.“In my heart, I feel like we have the potential to be” the Coastal’s best team, Johnson said. “But having potential and going out and doing it are two different things.”Will it be North Carolina, a perennial sleeping giant which returns 17 starters and is settling into third-year coach Larry Fedora’s up-tempo offense?Or will it be a surprise – just like Duke last year?“It’s all wide open,” Williams said of the league’s Coastal Division – the one without Florida State.If nothing else, the Seminoles have given the rest of the league something to shoot for – and, for the ones that have them on the conference’s eight-game schedule, a chance at a season-making victory.“You may say this is being too optimistic, but if and when we beat them this year, that’s really going to have a lot of positive attention on us,” Wake Forest fullback Jordan Garside said.___Follow Joedy McCreary on Twitter at http://twitter.com/joedyap