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Student TCAP scores across Tennessee grew this year but at a slower pace

TCAP Scores
The number of students in Tennessee who are meeting academic standards rose for the third year in a row, although at a slightly slower rate, according to the new state-wide data released by the Tennessee Department of Education today (July 1st). Students who took the state’s Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program (TCAP) tests showed small improvements on most tests, which continued the state’s upward trajectory of the past few years.
 
Some of the biggest gains highlighted were in math, where 19 percent more students scored proficient in Algebra II than in 2011 when the test was first administered. More students in grades 3 to 8 scored proficient than last year, but the pace of that growth has slowed.  Around 100,000 more students across all grade levels are proficient in math in Tennessee than in 2010.

Student is the first African-American valedictorian in her school’s history

Validictorian
A high school student in Queens, N.Y. now has the distinction of being her school’s first African-American valedictorian. The story is making national news, even though there are many trailblazers of a similar sort around the nation. But without regard to the context within which the story is being released, her achievement is nothing short of remarkable.
 
According to reporter Mona Rivera, Shanelle Davis is a senior at Benjamin Cardozo High School in the Bayside area.
 
“It’s an incredible honor. It’s still surreal to me,” she said.

‘Is that a misquote on the memorial tomb of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.?’

Dr King Misquote
“The inscription on the memorial tomb of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., is not what he said in his world famous speech, ‘I Have A Dream,’” said James D. Sewell, publisher of a new website, www.MLK-Tomb-Misquote.com, which is dedicated to correcting what Sewell calls an insult to Dr. King.
 
“I recently logged onto the U.S. Park Service website to research a tribute poem I was writing about Dr. King, when I discovered what looked like a misquote on Dr. King’s memorial tomb,” said Sewell.
 
“When I first saw it, I wasn’t really sure what to think,” said Sewell. “I could not believe that a man of Dr. King’s stature would be misquoted on his memorial tomb, and especially in his most famous speech.”

Justin Robinson: On his latest album ‘Alana’s Fantasy’

JRFantasy 600
 
Justin Robinson is a jazz saxophonist and flutist. Robinson established himself as a child prodigy when, while still a teenager, he began running after-hours jam sessions at the renowned Blue Note Jazz Club in New York City in the late 1980’s. He released his debut album “Justin Time” in 1991, which featured saxophone legends such as Bobby Watson and Gary Bartz. Robinson has shared the stage with greats like Diana Ross, Abbey Lincoln, the Dizzy Gillespie All-Star Big Band, and currently tours with trumpeter Roy Hargrove. His newest album, ‘Alana’s Fantasy,’ comes out today (July 1) under the Criss Cross Jazz label.
 
What was the artistic vision for “Alana’s Fantasy?”

Climate change can change one’s well-being

climate change
 
WASHINGTON – For most of the nearly 30 years since Dr. Nicole Brodie’s asthma diagnosis, the athlete and Army veteran has been able to maintain an uninterrupted life, continuing to teach elementary school, coach a children’s team, and remain active. She was partly able to do this by moving her family from New York State to Atlanta for the warmer climate.
 
“When I arrived in Atlanta, my asthma was controlled with just [an] albuterol [inhaler] as needed,” she said at a panel event last week. “But in the last 10 to 15 years, I have had to be on oral steroids…I’ve increased to daily Allegra [allergy pill] and nasal sprays. And I keep a Benadryl on me at all times. I have to take four-to-five pills a day to manage my symptoms.”
 
And three weeks ago, she found herself in the hospital for an emergency intervention. The heat index had risen too quickly, causing her lungs to fall to 75 percent capacity.