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Panel reviews treatment of minorities

Local journalism figures took a critical look at the treatment of minorities in the media Wednesday during a panel discussion of the same name at 7:30 p.m. in MU's Conservation Hall.

Education funds move forward

JEFFERSON CITY — Higher and lower education were big winners in Missouri budget negotiations Wednesday, as both received increases over the current fiscal year.

Higher education funding received an increase of around $20 million over the current year. Public schools got a boost with a $106 million increase for the foundation formula. The formula distributes state aid to elementary and secondary schools across the state.

Bond funds move forward

JEFFERSON CITY — A multi-hundred million dollar bond, slated for higher education “life science” construction projects statewide, took a step forward Wednesday evening when the Senate gave the bill first-round approval.

Although the bill won preliminary approval, several provisions were added that could cause it to face strong opposition in the House, including:

Parent-teacher communication a high priority

For the Columbia Public School District, parents are the key to bridging student achievement gaps. Parents said Wednesday that better communication between educators and parents is the solution.

The district sponsored a parent forum Wednesday to hear what parents of struggling students thought were the reasons for differences in student success and what can be done to address them. The main disparity discussed at the meeting was the one between black and white students.

Kerry changes plans, sets up trip to Fulton

The battle to win Missouri in this year’s presidential election continues Friday in Fulton, where Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry will speak at 1 p.m. in the Westminster College gymnasium.

Kerry had planned to make a campaign stop in Springfield on Friday. But his plans changed Tuesday, a day after Vice President Dick Cheney attacked Kerry’s political record on the floor of the college’s gymnasium. After Cheney’s speech, Westminster College President Fletcher Lamkin invited Kerry to speak to students, staff, faculty and trustees.

Family Roots

Ruth Arbuckle has to hold the “Historical Edition Columbia Missouri Herald” so close that the weathered pages brush her nose. But she can still read the 1895 account of Boone County’s history — the tale of a community her ancestors helped to define.

“They are why Columbia has become what it is,” Deborah Thompson, director of the Boone County Historical Society, said of the Gordons and similar families.

Hook, line and finger

JEFFERSON CITY — It’s illegal, but it happens: People jump into rivers and lakes, blindly stick their hands into logs or dark holes and pull out big fish by their mouths.

The practice is called “noodling,” and the Missouri Senate gave initial approval Wednesday to a bill that would legalize it in a limited form by allowing hand fishing for catfish and carp during June and July.

Fetal alcohol syndrome clinic in works

It’s more prevalent than Down Syndrome, spina bifida or fragile X syndrome. It’s fetal alcohol syndrome, or FAS, and MU will soon be home to the state’s first clinic specializing in its diagnosis and intervention.

The clinic is scheduled to open in September. The project is funded by a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that was obtained through the Missouri Department of Health. Its focus will stay on FAS, the condition afflicting children whose mothers drank alcohol during pregnancy.

Disposal of meth cited as working

KANSAS CITY— Missouri’s new system of disposing of waste from methamphetamine labs has saved the state millions of dollars and reduced the chances of toxic chemicals from meth production causing environmental problems, Gov. Bob Holden said Wednesday.

The Clandestine Drug Lab Collection Station Program, set up by the Department of Public Safety, is available to any public agency in Missouri. Its 20 specially designed facilities, at locations around the state, are stocked with equipment and supplies ranging from chemical test kits to protective clothing.

Recycling redoubled

Finding an environmentally friendly way to dispose of bottles, cans, paper or even printer cartridges will soon be easier on the MU campus.

Campus Facilities is expanding campus recycling by adding 50 beverage recycling containers in academic and administration buildings. Each bin is estimated to cost about $125, for a total of $6,250. The student fee capital appropriation committee approved spending on these containers. Associate Director of Campus Facilities Phil Shocklee, who is also chairman of the Campus Recycling Committee, expects these to be in place this summer.

Check mates

Columbia has become a battleground for kings and queens. That is, a battleground for a thriving chess community.

Players engage in chess combat with one another in order to increase their ratings, win tournaments, earn money and have fun. This is the story of five Columbia chess players.

Kerry gets turn in Fulton

Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry will speak at Westminster College on Friday just four days after being sharply criticized by Vice President Dick Cheney in his campaign speech in Fulton.

On Tuesday, Kerry accepted Westminster College President Fletcher Lamkin’s invitation to speak after Cheney thrashed Kerry’s political record as part of a campaign address originally billed as “a major foreign-policy announcement.”

Morels not multiplying this spring

Don Snedeker is a collector of taste, obsessing over a delicacy of nature that usually appears for only three weeks each spring.

He’s been going after the brainy-looking fungi known as morels for more than three decades, and this year has been his worst — he had collected two dozen as of Tuesday. “The conditions just were not right,” Snedeker said.

MU dean to resign in 2005

Richard Andrews, dean of MU’s College of Education, decided he will step down in May 2005 after more than a decade on the job. The announcement was made Monday by Provost Brady Deaton in a letter to MU’s Council of Deans and faculty in the education department.

“His investment in creating an exciting learning environment is deeply appreciated by the entire campus community,” Deaton said in the letter.

A nuclear revival?

It seems the only time Callaway County residents have cause to think about Missouri’s only commercial nuclear power plant is during refuelings.

Every 18 months or so, the plant, which is about 14 miles south of Fulton, is shut down for six to eight weeks while workers change out about 139,000 pounds of uranium fuel. They replace steam condenser tubes — giant pipes that carry about 585,000 gallons of water per minute. They also repair the turbines that power the plant’s generators and tune up countless valves, pumps and pipes.

Tiniest travelers feel Mighty Mo.’s wrath

Sailing down the Missouri River near Brunswick, a towboat captain came across a scattered graveyard of canoes. Eleven of them hung helpless on a rock dike extending into the river.

About 30 miles south, near Glasgow, seven more canoes got trapped on a sandbar. There are still 106 missing, lost in the temperamental waters.

This is what a movement looks like

Even now, you can hear the excitement in their voices as they begin to talk about the day they joined more than 500,000 other voices to let the nation’s leaders know that women’s reproductive health is a civil liberty they won’t give up. They say it’s their turn to keep feminist values alive.

More than 120 women joined the throng Sunday at the National Mall in Washington. They sang. They shouted. They told their stories.

“There was this girl that I worked with … and she has been pregnant twice,” said Columbia resident and MU student Katie Blair. “One time she threw herself off the roof of her garage, and the other time she threw herself down the stairs to her basement. Because I was so friendly and outgoing and talked about my beliefs at work ... she felt comfortable enough to tell me about that. It’s, like, wow.”

Principal, parents, faculty talk over plans for school

The first question that Vickie Robb, West Boulevard Elementary School’s new principal, fielded Tuesday night was a simple one, but one that’s been asked plenty by parents of children in Columbia’s new “model school” plan: “Why here?”

To which she replied: “This is a big thing — and I like that.”

Residents view plan for Broadway

Columbia residents took advantage of a small but critical window of opportunity Tuesday to track the progress of and raise concerns about a group working to improve bicycle and pedestrian safety along Broadway.

The Broadway Corridor Steering Committee held an open house Tuesday night to display photos and graphics illustrating trouble spots along the roadway, along with a “conceptual plan” aimed at resolving them.

Cheney scolds and is scolded

FULTON — In a speech originally touted as a “major foreign-policy announcement,” Vice President Dick Cheney blistered Democratic presidential candidate Sen. John Kerry on Monday in the same place where Winston Churchill warned of communism’s “Iron Curtain” nearly 60 years ago.

Westminster College President Fletcher Lamkin said he enjoyed the first half of Cheney’s address, calling it an “excellent educational review of U.S. foreign policy.” But he said he was surprised and disappointed by Cheney’s decision to attack Kerry in the last 15 minutes of his speech.

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