U.S. News

NPR Ed
5:03 am
Tue March 17, 2015

Q&A: Raising Kids Who Want To Read

There's a big difference between teaching kids to read and teaching them to love reading.
LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Wed March 18, 2015 7:10 am

In his new book, Raising Kids Who Read, Daniel Willingham wants to be clear: There's a big difference between teaching kids to read and teaching them to love reading.

And Willingham, a parent himself, doesn't champion reading for the obvious reasons — not because research suggests that kids who read for pleasure do better in school and in life.

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Race
3:55 am
Tue March 17, 2015

A Chinese Immigrant Gets His California Law License, 125 Years Later

Originally published on Tue March 24, 2015 6:02 pm

The state Supreme Court in California has posthumously admitted a Chinese immigrant to the state bar, 125 years after his application was denied. The law license application was rejected back in 1890.

Hong Yen Chang was sent to United States from China in 1872 to be groomed as a diplomat, a bridge between East and West. His training took him through Andover, Yale and Columbia Law School.

"So he really was about as integrated as one can be in the establishment at the time," says Gabriel Chin, a professor at the University of California at Davis School of Law.

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National Security
1:22 am
Tue March 17, 2015

In Intense Desert Training, Marine Women Fight For Place On Front Lines

Female and male Marines prepare for a live-fire exercise at Twentynine Palms, a training camp in the Mojave Desert.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Wed March 25, 2015 3:03 pm

In the dry and craggy hills of California's Mojave Desert, Capt. Ray Kaster tries to shout over the din of a machine gun to be heard by Alpha Company, the unit of Marines he's working with during a month of rigorous instruction at Twentynine Palms training center.

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It's All Politics
5:03 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Obama, 2016 Contenders Deal With Changing Attitudes On Marijuana

Polls show changing American opinion on marijuana, and it's having an effect on politics.
Leon Neal AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 9:26 am

The divide between Republicans and Democrats on pot politics is narrowing, President Barack Obama said in an interview Monday.

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Shots - Health News
4:33 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Clues To Autism, Schizophrenia Emerge From Cerebellum Research

Jonathan Keleher talks with a colleague, Rafael Wainhaus, at work. Keleher was born without a cerebellum, but his brain has developed work-arounds for solving problems of balance and abstract thought.
Ellen Webber for NPR

Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 2:27 pm

A new understanding of the brain's cerebellum could lead to new treatments for people with problems caused by some strokes, autism and even schizophrenia.

That's because there's growing evidence that symptoms ranging from difficulty with abstract thinking to emotional instability to psychosis all have links to the cerebellum, says Jeremy Schmahmann, a professor of neurology at Harvard and Massachusetts General Hospital.

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U.S.
3:36 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

FEMA's Appeals Process Favored Insurance Companies Almost Every Time

Doug Quinn's ranch house in Toms River, N.J., was heavily damaged by flooding during Hurricane Sandy. His insurance company gave him half the value of his home and when he appealed, FEMA sided with the insurance company.
Hansi Lo Wang NPR

Originally published on Wed March 18, 2015 1:15 pm

FEMA has taken the unprecedented step of reopening all Superstorm Sandy flood claims because thousands of homeowners said insurance companies intentionally lowballed damage estimates.

Similar allegations surfaced in 2004 after Hurricane Isabel struck the Mid-Atlantic. To answer critics then, FEMA formalized an appeals process.

That appeals process has gone against Sandy victims almost every time, statistics show.

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U.S.
3:36 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

California Judges Must Cut Ties With The Boy Scouts

The California Supreme Court ban prohibits state judges from belonging to nonprofit youth organizations that practice discrimination. That includes Boy Scouts, which has restricted gay troop leaders.
David Manning Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Wed March 18, 2015 12:52 pm

California has banned state court judges from belonging to the Boy Scouts. The move extends an earlier ban on judges' belonging to groups that discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation that had an exemption for youth groups. Judges have one year to sever their ties with the Boy Scouts.

Judges are already banned from joining lots of groups that other people can belong to. For example, they can't be members of country clubs that don't admit Jews or women.

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Politics
3:36 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

New Hampshire Visit Offers Glimpse Into Possible Walker, Bush Rivalry

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 6:01 pm

The two likely Republican presidential front-runners, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, visited New Hampshire this weekend. Though neither has officially declared their candidacy, The Boston Globe's James Pindell says they're giving political reporters a lot to talk about.

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Law
3:36 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Officers Recall Night Of Battle With Boston Marathon Bombing Suspects

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 6:01 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

The Two-Way
3:30 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Gunfire, Bombs And An Arrest: Boston Police Detail Tsarnaev's Capture For Court

A still image from surveillance video that was entered as evidence shows Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev in 2013, in a handout photo provided by the U.S. Attorney's Office in Boston. Tsarnaev, 21, is accused of killing three people and injuring 264 with a pair of homemade bombs at the race's crowded finish, as well as fatally shooting a police officer three days later.
Handout Photo Reuters /Landov

Police officers testifying at the trial of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev described a gunbattle and powerful explosions Monday, recalling the death of Tsarnaev's older brother and the process that ended an intense manhunt for the pair.

Tsarnaev's attorneys have admitted that he was involved in the deadly bombing and the events that followed. But they also insist he was led into the operation by his older brother, and they say he doesn't deserve the death penalty.

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It's All Politics
3:08 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

War Criminals Next Door: Immigration Division Brings Violators To Justice

Salvadoran Gen. Carlos Eugenio Vides Casanova, shown in an undated photo, is alleged to have presided over human rights violations in that country, including the murders of four Americans in 1980.
AP

Originally published on Wed March 18, 2015 3:48 pm

An appeals panel in Florida has upheld a deportation order against a former defense minister of El Salvador, who is alleged to have presided over human rights violations in that country, including the murders of four American churchwomen in 1980. Gen. Carlos Eugenio Vides Casanova was allowed to retire in the U.S. in 1989. Now, a little known unit of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement is trying to expel him as well as others charged with human rights abuses.

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It's All Politics
3:05 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

I'm Mike Huckabee, And I Approve This ... Infomercial?

In an infomercial for Barton Publishing's Diabetes Solution Kit Huckabee says he knows diabetes can be reversed "because I did it and today, you can too."
Getty Images

Mike Huckabee has always had the reputation as a candidate who does things outside the box.

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NPR News Investigations
2:58 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

California Auditing Insurance Company That Took Away Home Health Aide

Joel Ramirez climbs back into his wheelchair with the help of Francisco Guardado, a home health aide, at his home in Rialto, Calif.
Patrick T. Fallon for ProPublica

California's labor department says it will conduct an audit of how Travelers Insurance handled the case of paralyzed worker Joel Ramirez, who was left to fend for himself for months after the company withdrew his 24-hour home health care.

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NPR Ed
2:37 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Why Many Smart, Low-Income Students Don't Apply To Elite Schools

Kristen Hannah Perez, a low-income, high-achieving student from Celina, Texas, plans to attend Dartmouth€ College next fall.
Shereen Meraji/NPR

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 6:01 pm

Right now, high school seniors across the country are trying hard not to think about what is — or isn't — coming in the mail.

They're anxiously awaiting acceptance letters (or the opposite) from their top-choice colleges and universities. But this story isn't about them. It's about a big group of seniors who could get into great schools but don't apply: high-achieving students from low-income families who live outside of America's big cities.

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National Security
2:37 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Most Americans' Behavior Unchanged After Snowden Revelations, Study Finds

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 6:01 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR Ed
1:36 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Nancie Atwell Of Maine Wins $1 Million Global Teaching Prize

Nancie Atwell (center) poses with former U.S. President Bill Clinton (left) and Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, prime minister of the United Arab Emirates and ruler of Dubai, after she won the $1 million Global Teacher Prize in Dubai on Sunday.
Kamran Jebreili AP

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 3:06 pm

This weekend, Maine teacher Nancie Atwell was awarded the first Global Teacher Prize, a $1 million award intended to be the "Nobel Prize of teaching."

Growing up, Atwell, 63, never expected to become a teacher, or even to go to college. But from the moment she began teaching in 1973, Atwell says she felt right at home.

"I am so inspired by all my students, but especially the seventh- and eighth-graders," she says. "They are so uninhibited and if you ask them to do something they will just work their heads and hearts off."

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Shots - Health News
12:33 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Obamacare Cut The Ranks Of The Uninsured By A Third

A total of 16.4 million non-elderly adults have gained health insurance coverage since the Affordable Care Act became law five years ago this month. It's a reduction in the ranks of the uninsured the the Department of Health and Human Services called historic.

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U.S.
4:08 am
Mon March 16, 2015

Once Lost, Internment Camp In Hawaii Now A National Monument

Hawaii's Honouliuli Internment Camp held thousands of prisoners of war and hundreds of Japanese-American citizens during World War II
Courtesy of Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaii

Originally published on Wed March 18, 2015 12:39 pm

The Honouliuli internment camp, not far from Hawaii's Pearl Harbor, held as many as 4,000 prisoners during World War II, including hundreds of Japanese-Americans.

In February, President Obama named the location a national monument.

The camp became known by prisoners as "jigokudani," or "Hell's Valley," says Carole Hayashino, the president of the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaii.

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Around the Nation
3:21 am
Mon March 16, 2015

Suspect Arrested In Shooting Of Police In Ferguson

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 7:20 am

Copyright 2015 KWMU-FM. To see more, visit http://www.stlpublicradio.org.

Shots - Health News
1:08 am
Mon March 16, 2015

A Man's Incomplete Brain Reveals Cerebellum's Role In Thought And Emotion

Jonathan Keleher is one of a handful of people who have lived their entire lives without a cerebellum.
Ellen Webber for NPR

Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 2:27 pm

Since his birth 33 years ago, Jonathan Keleher has been living without a cerebellum, a structure that usually contains about half the brain's neurons.

This exceedingly rare condition has left Jonathan with a distinctive way of speaking and a walk that is slightly awkward. He also lacks the balance to ride a bicycle.

But all that hasn't kept him from living on his own, holding down an office job and charming pretty much every person he meets.

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National Security
5:31 pm
Sun March 15, 2015

An 'Upstream' Battle As Wikimedia Challenges NSA Surveillance

The lawsuit by Wikimedia and other plaintiffs challenges the National Security Agency's use of upstream surveillance, which collects the content of communications, instead of just the metadata.
Patrick Semansky AP

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 5:52 am

Earlier this week, Wikimedia, the parent company of Wikipedia, filed a lawsuit against the National Security Agency, saying that the NSA's use of "upstream" mass surveillance violates the First and Fourth Amendments.

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Around the Nation
3:23 pm
Sun March 15, 2015

Police Dog On Payroll: 'Indiana Bones' Is Woman's Best Friend

Indiana "Indy" Bones reports for duty on a field investigation, in which the dog sniffs to detect human remains for a reopened cold case.
Gloria Hillard NPR

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 9:48 am

From bomb and drug-sniffing duties to neighborhood patrol, dogs are widely used in law enforcement. Many agencies rely on volunteer canine teams to assist them with search and rescue operations and criminal investigations.

But the county of Los Angeles has a full-time four-legged detective on its payroll: Indiana Bones, or "Indy."

Karina Peck, an investigator and canine handler with the Los Angeles County coroner's office, is in a truck, rolling over uneven, hard-packed earth that dead-ends in a shallow canyon.

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Health
3:17 pm
Sun March 15, 2015

Amid Rising Concern About Addiction, Universities Focus On Recovery

Students in recovery from substance abuse are finding support on a growing number of college and university campuses, including the University of Texas at Austin.
Ronald Martinez Getty Images

Originally published on Sun March 15, 2015 4:22 pm

In murder mystery novels, when the hero, a private detective or homicide cop, drops by a late-night Alcoholics Anonymous meeting to stave off a sudden craving for a beer or two or 20, it's usually in some dingy church basement or dilapidated storefront on the seedier side of town. There's a pot of burnt coffee and a few stale doughnuts on a back table.

The Center for Students in Recovery at the University of Texas could not be more different.

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U.S.
3:17 pm
Sun March 15, 2015

Arrest Made In Ferguson Police Shooting

Originally published on Sun March 15, 2015 4:22 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

After a three-day manhunt, police in Ferguson, Mo., have arrested a suspect in the shooting that wounded two police officers early on Thursday morning.

(SOUNDBITE OF SPEECH)

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The Two-Way
12:42 pm
Sun March 15, 2015

Kerry To Resume Talks Over Iran's Nuclear Program

Secretary of State John Kerry is in Switzerland today for more talks with Iran's foreign minister on the Islamic republic's nuclear program. The meeting comes a week after Senate Republicans signed an open letter to Iran suggesting any deal reached would lapse the day President Obama leaves office.

NPR's Peter Kenyon, who is reporting on the talks for our Newscast unit, says:

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The Two-Way
11:56 am
Sun March 15, 2015

Arrest Made In Shooting Of Two Officers In Ferguson, Police Say

Jeffrey Williams, 20, is charged with two counts of first-degree assault in connection with the shooting of two police officers in Ferguson on March 12.
St. Louis County Police Department AP

Originally published on Sun March 15, 2015 6:44 pm

Updated at 3:45 p.m.

The St. Louis County Police Department says an arrest has been made in connection with the shooting of two officers during a protest in Ferguson, Mo., last week.

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The Two-Way
9:54 am
Sun March 15, 2015

Robert Durst, Subject Of HBO's 'The Jinx,' Arrested In New Orleans

This booking photo provided by the Orleans Parish Sheriff's Office shows Robert Durst, after his arrest Saturday in New Orleans on an extradition warrant to Los Angeles.
AP

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 9:23 am

Updated at 8:00 p.m. ET

At the conclusion of the HBO documentary The Jinx, the filmmakers presented audio of Robert Durst whispering to himself, "What the hell did I do? Killed them all, of course" — an apparent reference to the alleged crimes that have clouded his life in suspicion.

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Around the Nation
8:25 am
Sun March 15, 2015

Instead Of Tickets, N.H. Police Hand Out Good-Deed Coupons

Originally published on Sun March 15, 2015 9:03 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Police in Farmington, N.H., are issuing tickets all over town. But these are tickets you might not mind getting.

CHIEF JOHN DRURY: They're for a slice of pizza or a small French fry.

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Code Switch
7:03 am
Sun March 15, 2015

Univision Race Gaffe Shows Culture Gap

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 6:33 am

It happened again. The Spanish-language, Miami-based Univision — the fifth-largest television network in the U.S. — has another racial insensitivity mess to clean up.

On Wednesday, Univision talk show host and fashion commentator Rodner Figueroa said that first lady Michelle Obama looks like an apocalyptic ape.

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NPR Ed
7:03 am
Sun March 15, 2015

Six Things We Learned At South By Southwest EDU

SXSW Edu Logo

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 4:58 am

The NPR Ed team is back from Austin, where we connected with hundreds of educators and people excited about education at the annual South By Southwest Edu Conference. As with many conferences, there's just as much to be gained from conversations in the hallways and chance encounters as from the official sessions. Here's what we learned from both.

1) For many teachers, the most important tech tools are free.

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