Bees are dying at unprecedented rates!
Boa Vida Imports Recalls Pork And Beef Products Imported From An Ineligible Country Without Benefit Of Import Inspection Boa Vida Imports, a New Bedford, Mass., establishment, is recalling approximately 385 pounds of pork and beef products imported from Portugal because this country is not eligible to export meat products to the United States.
Principles To Guide The Reauthorization Of Federal Education Policy
In 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) into law to ensure all kids, no matter their family’s income level, zip code, or background, receive an education that gives them an opportunity for success. Since then the legislation has gone through changes, but at its core it maintained a federal role in education that focuses on promoting equity and ensuring that disadvantaged students receive the resources needed for a quality education.
The latest version of the ESEA, more commonly known as No Child Left Behind, has been long overdue for reauthorization, and it looks like this year Congress may actually take action. There is no question that NCLB is outdated and broken, but it must be changed in a way that puts students first. In that light, the Center for American Progress has joined with the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) to highlight key principles that should be included in the new version of the law.
Far from outlining a complete set of recommendations for the reauthorization of this critical legislation, these share principles are rather a statement of what good education policy should be in some of the core — and controversial — areas of debate. They are intended to encourage Congress to work together on a bipartisan basis to improve the legislation. And the hope is that, with these shared principles in mind, new federal policy will ensure that all students — and especially those who have traditionally been the most disadvantaged — are prepared to compete in a global economy.
Below is a summary of the shared principles that CAP and AFT have released, and click here to check out the full statement.
- Address funding inequities to improve teaching and learning;
- Give parents and communities useful information about whether students are working at grade level or are struggling, and allow teachers to diagnose and help their students. This means maintaining the federal requirement for annual statewide testing in grades 3 through 8 and once in high school;
- Disaggregate assessment results by subgroups, including race and income level, and use these assessment results to identify where learning gaps exist;
- Provide a system of multiple measures for accountability and relieve some of the unintended pressure of tests on students;
- Design accountability systems intended to identify and target interventions for schools with large achievement gaps or large numbers of low-performing disadvantaged kids;
- Raise the bar for entry to and through the teacher pipeline including at least doubling the investments for states and districts to elevate the teaching profession and support educators.
BOTTOM LINE: The goal of federal education policy should be to prepare future generations for success and ensure that disadvantaged students have access to the resources they need. With the reauthorization of No Child Left Behind under consideration, now is a critical time to make necessary changes to strengthen our education system. These shared principles should serve as a guide to doing so — our children deserve no less.
CREDIT: WNDU News Screenshot
A 33-year-old woman from Indiana faces decades in prison after she sought medical attention at a hospital as she was bleeding from a premature delivery. The case is just the latest example illustrating the real-world consequences of the harsh state laws that essentially criminalize pregnancy.
According to the charges being filed against her, Purvi Patel attempted to end her pregnancy last year by taking pills that she bought online from Hong Kong. The pills didn’t work, and Patel eventually delivered a premature baby at home. When she went to an emergency room to seek treatment after giving birth, the staff asked why she didn’t have an infant with her. She said her baby appeared to be dead, and she had wrapped it in a bag and placed it in a dumpster.
Now, Patel is being charged with both neglect and feticide, allegations that actually conflict with each other. She was initially charged with “neglect of a dependent” after prosecutors learned she left her baby in in a dumpster, a charge that won’t apply if the baby was already dead. But she’s now also being charged with “fetal murder of an unborn child” — a charge that an Indiana judge allowed to stand this week — for taking drugs that could have illegally ended her pregnancy.
As the Daily Beast’s Sally Kohn points out, the logic doesn’t exactly hold up. “The State of Indiana intends to convict and incarcerate Purvi Patel one way or another, whether the fetus she delivered was alive or not — never mind the fact that the facts necessary for filing the one charge (that the fetus have been alive) entirely contradict the facts necessary for filing the other (that the fetus have been dead) and vice versa,” Kohn writes.
On top of that, reproductive rights advocates and legal experts point out that Indiana’s “feticide” law was never intended to be applied to pregnant women themselves. It was originally written as a way to crack down on illegal abortion providers. Critics say Patel fits into a disturbing trend; similar “fetal homicide” laws are in place in at least 38 states, and they’re increasingly used to punish women who end up having miscarriages or stillbirths.
“Once again targeting a woman of color, prosecutors in Indiana are using this very sad situation to establish that intentional abortions as well as unintentional pregnancy losses should be punished as crimes,” Lynn Paltrow, the executive director of National Advocates for Pregnant Women, which tracks these cases closely, said in a recent statement about Patel’s case. “In the U.S., as a matter of constitutional law and human decency, no woman should be arrested for the outcome of her pregnancy.”
Patel is the second woman to be prosecuted under Indiana’s feticide law. The state also pressed charges against Bei Bei Shuai, a Chinese immigrant who attempted suicide while pregnant and ended up delivering a baby that didn’t survive. Shaui was imprisoned for more than a year before a plea deal was reached in April, and her case sparked international outrage. More than 100,000 people signed onto a petition demanding Shuai’s release and pointing out that “it is wrong to have a set of separate and unequal laws for pregnant women.”
The laws that allow states to arrest pregnant women for allegedly harming their fetuses actually end up undermining public health. Major medical groups like the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists oppose “feticide” laws because they ultimately deter women from seeking the medical attention they need.
Harsh restrictions on abortion, as well as unreasonably broad definitions of “fetal homicide,” have created a society in which all pregnant women are transformed into potential suspects in the eyes of the law. And since miscarriage and abortion are relatively common pregnancy experiences — and research has proven that women are going to end their pregnancies whether or not it’s legal — that means we’re also approaching a society in which desperate women may be too terrified to ask for health treatment. For instance, if Patel had known that she was at risk for being charged with fetal homicide, would she have thought twice about going to the emergency room? Would she have joined the millions of women around the world who die from botched abortions and risky childbirth?
“We cannot afford to deter a woman from seeking reproductive health care,” the Indiana Religious Coalition for Reproductive Justice pointed out in a statement released this week. “Those of us who are Christian know that when Jesus responded to the hemorrhaging woman there was no place for aggressive interrogation and punishment. It was all for healing.”
I was diagnosed with ALS last year, which means I have 2-5 years to live. But a new drug could save my life – please help me convince the FDA to allow ALS patients like me to have early access to this life-saving medication.