Make teachers take basic English test

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion I have just read your biased editorial regarding the lower standards at charter schools. Have you forgotten an earlier article regarding New York State Regents eliminating the English test for teachers? What a high standard that teachers do not have to pass a basic test to teach because certain groups have only a 37 percent pass rate.How qualified are these teachers, thrust into our basic school system, when they themselves cannot pass a test that has been necessary for many years? Why do I feel that the hypocrisy of the teachers’ unions, who are themselves less than literate, are creating a false scenario?Also proven is how ineffectual schools are now, with terrible graduation results and an emphasize on not education but politics.Geraldine KrawitzSaratoga Springs More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusSchenectady, Saratoga casinos say reopening has gone well; revenue down 30%EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationlast_img read more

Dodgers outslug Reds, complete sweep

first_imgUtley raised the stakes by drawing another full count, then walking on Iglesias’ sixth pitch. Grandal jogged home from third base and the Dodgers trailed 7-5.“A lot of our guys, we can slug,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said, “but there is a time when you have an elite pitcher, you have to really continue to compete but make an adjustment and really bear down to have a two-strike approach. Kiké right there, he stayed within himself that entire at-bat, spoiled a lot of good pitches, competed, and 13 pitches later he’s at first base and giving Chase (Utley) an opportunity to extend the inning.”Seager did not wait long to finish the rally. He crushed the first pitch he saw to center field for a grand slam. He had never hit a grand slam in a major league game or collected the game-winning hit in his team’s final at-bat ever — at least that he could remember. In the span of less than 24 hours, Seager did both.Kenley Jansen quickly warmed up, then pitched a perfect ninth for his 200th career save.“We can slug as well as anybody,” Roberts said, “but in that inning right there, the ability to win pitches, win 90 feet … it was great team offense.”Four of the Dodgers’ 10 hits were home runs. In addition to Bellinger’s two home runs and Seager’s grand slam, Utley hit a pitch over the center-field fence and off the glove of Billy Hamilton for his fourth home run of the season. Utley also walked three times.The Reds hit four home runs as well. According to Stats LLC, it was the second game in Dodger Stadium history to feature at least four home runs by both teams.Dodgers starter Hyun-Jin Ryu allowed four runs in four innings. The left-hander allowed six hits, did not walk a batter, and struck out five. Neither he nor Reds starter Tim Adleman (five innings, three runs) factored into the decision.Ryu pitched a perfect first inning. The first pitch he threw in the second inning, an 89-mph fastball to Adam Duvall, landed over the fence for a home run. A single by Eugenio Suarez, followed by a home run by Scott Schebler, gave the Reds a sudden 3-0 lead.Schebler, the former Dodgers outfielder, briefly moved into the National League lead with 18 home runs.Bellinger answered in the bottom of the second inning with a two-run blast to right field. Joey Votto answered with a solo home run in the third inning, his 18th of the year, tying Schebler for the league lead.A two-run home run by Devin Mesoraco against Dodgers pitcher Ross Stripling gave the Reds a 7-3 lead in the sixth inning.The game ended when Eugenio Suarez flied out to center field against Jansen. The center fielder, Chris Taylor, accidentally flipped the ball into the stands — the final out of Jansen’s 200th save temporarily lost among the announced crowd of 42,674.“I really wanted the ball, but at the same time I don’t care,” Jansen said. “It was a little disappointing but … at the end of the day we won the ballgame.”The other casualty of this game was Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, who was forced to leave after six innings because of pain in his back. Gonzalez has been dealing with a herniated disk between his L4 and L5 vertebrae all season.Gonzalez said he might get an MRI on Monday. The Dodgers are scheduled to begin a trip in Cleveland on Tuesday, and Roberts hinted that Joc Pederson could be summoned from his minor league rehab assignment at Triple-A Oklahoma City in case Gonzalez needs to go on the disabled list.Gonzalez said the MRI would help “to see if it’s gotten any worse, see what options I have moving forward.”Removing Gonzalez paid immediate dividends for the Dodgers. Hernandez entered the game when Gonzalez left. One inning later, he delivered the 13-pitch walk against Iglesias. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error LOS ANGELES >> The Dodgers and Cincinnati Reds combined to hit eight home runs Sunday.The last one carried the day.Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager capped a brilliant weekend with a grand slam against Reds closer Raisel Iglesias in the eighth inning of a 9-7 victory at Dodger Stadium. That clinched the Dodgers’ three-game sweep of the Reds, their fourth straight win overall.A day earlier, Seager walked off the Reds by hitting a two-run double in the Dodgers’ final at-bat.center_img “It was a changeup,” Seager said of Iglesias’ pitch. “I was just trying to look for something out over the plate up, really not trying to do too much. Not trying to drive in everybody — just sac fly, base hit, score one, move-it-to-the-next-guy kind of mentality.”Seager failed in that regard. The next guy, Justin Turner, batted with the bases empty and struck out. But the move-it-to-the-next-guy approach served the Dodgers well in the eighth inning, when they scored six runs to turn a 7-3 deficit into a 9-7 advantage.The inning began with a solo home run by Cody Bellinger — his second of the day — against reliever Austin Brice. Brice allowed a single to Yasmani Grandal before Reds manager Bryan Price called upon Iglesias, his closer, to get a rare five-out save.Yasiel Puig was the first batter. He took four straight pitches out of the strike zone for a walk.Kiké Hernandez was next. He fouled off a total of eight pitches during a 13-pitch plate appearance. Iglesias’ final pitch was called a ball, loading the bases for Chase Utley.last_img read more

NBA free agency rumors: Amar’e Stoudemire taking comeback bid very seriously

first_img Willie Cauley-Stein explains decision to sign with Warriors “From that standpoint, I have a lot to offer. And also as a basketball player, I still have a lot of game left. I can help a team in any way they need.”Stoudemire, a six-time All-Star, spent 14 NBA seasons with the Suns, Knicks, Mavericks and Heat. He last played in the NBA in 2016 for Miami and retired as a Knick that offseason. Since then, he’s enjoyed stints in the Israeli Basketball Premier League and BIG3. Stoudemire’s career took a sharp downturn (largely due to injuries) after he signed a five-year, $100 million deal with the Knicks in 2010. He was an All-Star in his first season in a New York uniform as he averaged 25.3 points and 8.2 rebounds per game. But in his last full season with New York, those numbers dropped to 11.9 points and 4.9 rebounds.Now after three full seasons of rest and a conversion to Judaism, Stoudemire believes he’s ready to return to the league.“I was never really done,’’ Stoudemire said. “I took kind of a sabbatical leave and I went to go learn over in Israel for two and a half years or so. So I went there and when I was still learning, I was able to also play basketball and keep myself in shape. I always stayed in top shape. I didn’t really remove myself too far from being in basketball shape.” Celtics’ Brad Stevens addresses losing Kyrie Irving, Al Horford in free agency “For me I got down to 235 [pounds], which is my lowest weight I’ve ever played at. I got as strong as I could possibly be,” Stoudemire told MSG Network on Tuesday (via the New York Post). “My body feels amazing, so we’ll see if the opportunity becomes a reality.”“A lot of the teams have a lot of young players and a lot of players that can learn how to train, how to become professionals and how to become great basketball players. And leadership goes a long way with teams in order to get from a playoff team to a contending championship team. Related News The flurry of money thrown around to free agents this offseason has former All-Star Amar’e Stoudemire thirsting for a piece of the pie and a return to the court.At age 36, Stoudemire held a workout in Las Vegas on Monday in front of 15 NBA teams in serious hopes of earning a roster spot. Nets ‘humbled’ by Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving signingslast_img read more

Deal will save Iowa City house, expand UI writing program space

first_imgIOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Iowa City and the University of Iowa have worked out a deal that will preserve a 177-year-old house and provide space for the university’s Nonfiction Writing Program. The new location would be part of a “writing neighborhood” near two other historic buildings that house the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and Iowa’s International Writing Program. The city is offering the $1 million piece of property, which is currently a parking lot, at no cost to the university. But a city assessment put the cost of moving and renovating the Sanxay-Gilmore House at over $1.23 million. University officials say the school plans to cover those costs with a “substantial gift.” Officials declined to give details on the donation.last_img

RBR Student Remembered with Vigil

first_imgBy John BurtonRED BANK – With the sudden death of an 18-year-old Red Bank Regional High School senior, the leader of a local community organization felt it was appropriate to honor the girl’s memory by way of a public vigil.Linda Clark, who founded the Count The Children Move­ment in the borough, organized the candlelight vigil for Sept. 14, in response to the death of Riyadhna Farrow.“We looked at it as something where we could come out and support the family and to let her friends share their love,” Clark said.According to Clark, the vigil brought about 200 people to Montgomery Terrace, where the student lived with her family.Capt. Darren McConnell, a Red Bank police spokesman, said Farrow’s death “appears to have been from natural causes,” but additional tests have been conducted. “I can tell you we ruled out any kind of foul play,” he said.“She deserved to be remembered for who she was,” said Clark, a lifelong resident.Among the roughly 200 who gathered at the Ever­green Public Housing development were fellow students, high school administration representatives, local clergy, Mayor Pasquale Menna and the six borough council members, according to Clark.Councilwoman Sharon Lee noted that similar events in the recent past have been set into motion by violent acts or to make a political statement, such as one held in the aftermath of the Trayvon Martin shooting in Florida.The gathering for Farrow wasn’t for a political reason and was attended by many fellow students. “It was grief,” she said. “It was sorrow over the loss of one of their peers.”Farrow, Lee said, was a good student, excelling in math and science, working part time at Foodtown, Broad Street.“She had focus and direction and a lot of young people don’t have that today,” Lee said. “She was a role model.”What also struck Lee was how the young people depended on each other for support. “They needed to come together and hug each other,” she said. “That’s one of the things I noticed, the prolonged hugs.“It was very comforting to the family to see so many young people come to her home and express their concern,” Lee said.The gathering provided a chance for an impromptu fundraising effort, to assist the family with funeral costs, collecting $1,150, Clark said.Farrow’s funeral service was held Tuesday evening, Sept. 18, at Pilgrim Baptist Church, 172 Shrewsbury Ave. She is survived by her parents, six brothers and four sisters.last_img read more

Shane Byrne and Ronnie Whelan to host charity golf tournament in Donegal

first_imgShane Byrne and Ronnie Whelan are bringing their Celebrity Charity Golf Classic back to Donegal this October. On October 3rd an A-List of celebrities will be joined by local golfers and businessmen and women at the stunning links course on the Sheephaven Bay Peninsula, The Rosapenna Hotel and Golf Resort in Downings.You just never know who you will play alongside. Its a great boost for the area and also for those teams who get to take part in a fun day of golf and celebrate afterwards with a Buffet dinner and entertainment for guests.It is expected that a list of well-known celebrities will join this duo on October 3rd 2019.This year’s chosen charity is Fighting Blindness Ireland, a patient-led charity with a vision to cure blindness, supporting people living with sight loss and empowering patients.They are the only Irish charity funding research into treatments for sight loss. To date, they have invested over €18 million in more than 100 research and clinical projects. They provide professional counselling and therapeutic services for individuals and families living with vision impairment and blindness.They advocate for equity of access to timely and appropriate diagnosis, healthcare, therapies and support services and, through education and information provision, they work to empower the 247,000 children and adults in Ireland who are blind or visually impaired.Irwin Expert Electrical has been sponsoring this event for a number of years along with Flo Gas and Boc Pix. Declan Irwin is calling out to anyone who would like to take part to either enter a team or sponsor a tee. The craic not to mention the prizes for the winners are amazing.Irwin Expert Electrical are in business for over 40 years, with a showroom based in Letterkenny and another in Buncrana.They are the No. 1 Electrical Retail outlet in the North West and are delighted to be associated with this charity. If you are interested in putting in a team, you can call Gary Keating from GK Events and PR who is the main organiser of this event by calling +353872287541 or emailing [email protected] Byrne and Ronnie Whelan to host charity golf tournament in Donegal was last modified: September 19th, 2019 by Staff WriterShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Rural women inspire HIV researchers

first_imgThe department further noted that the research opened new avenues in the fight against HIV/Aids in South Africa. However, the Treatment Action Campaign had some reservations about the findings of the study. Sixteen- and 17-year-old girls were not involved in the study because of safety reasons, but according to Abdool-Karim there was adequate safety data available, and there was no reason why young women should not be involved, as they were more at risk for the disease. Confirmatory studies needed Caprisa 004 gel trial “In 2004, we looked at the added value that we could contribute to the microbicides trial that were taking place at that time,” Quarraisha said. “We recognised the urgent need for methods for women. We went back to the drawing board and found that there was a gap in terms of the candidate microbicides that were available and being tested. The placebo was a gel with no active ingredient. Their journey towards finding effective and safe treatment for women began 20 years ago. Today, the husband-and-wife duo have made a ground-breaking discovery that could alter the course of HIV/Aids treatment for many years to come. “There’s concern that it’s creating false expectations. It’s still early days, and we would advise caution when interpreting the findings,” he said. Abdool-Karim said South African scientists were keen in doing the confirmatory studies in terms of the dosing regiments and also looking at bridging populations. The scientists recently announced the results of a ground-breaking safety and effectiveness study of an antiretroviral microbicide gel. The tenofovir gel trial, known as the Caprisa 004, involved 889 women at high risk in the Aids-ravaged Vulindlela district near Howick. Should other studies of tenofovir gel confirm these results, widespread use of the gel, at this level of protection, could prevent over half-a-million new HIV infections in South Africa alone over the next decade. Tenofovir works by preventing the HIV from growing inside human cells. Speaking to BuaNews, Quarraisha Abdool-Karim said that the use of antiretroviral (ARV) drugs for prevention was novel, adding that tenofovir gel could fill an important HIV-prevention gap by empowering women who are unable to successfully negotiate mutual faithfulness or condom use with their male partners. “We can’t afford to wait 10 years to do this, or assume that it will happen. If we set a milestone date, it will happen.” “We know that ARVs work for treatment of HIV and are effective in infants not getting infected, and we saw a gap in terms of trials of gel formulation,” Quarraisha said. “The pharmaceutical industry is not investing in preventive methods including methods for women, so we hope that the type of result we’ve shown may increase industry interest for developing further preventive methods for women.” “We need to sit down with the Medicines Control Council with all the data we have to date and figure out what more is needed and plan and implement those studies needed to get a safe and efficacious microbicide to women,” she said. In rural Vulindlela, a town 90 kilometres outside Durban, one in 10 girls is HIV-positive by the age of 16; by 24, more than half are infected. For two KwaZulu-Natal scientists, Dr Quarraisha Abdool-Karim and Professor Salim Abdool-Karim, finding effective treatment for a disease that affects mostly women was an urgent priority. Source: BuaNews National Association of People Living with HIV and Aids’ KwaZulu-Natal coordinator, Slungile Mntambo, said that while they supported the attempts of the researchers to find a method of protection that would benefit women, they would encourage further trials that would increase the effectiveness of the gel. Speaking at the 18th International Aids Conference held in Vienna recently, Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi said he was encouraged by the promising results, adding that this might be the beginning of the answer to the questions that the country had been asking for ages. Preparations for the study began in 2004 due to not only the very high prevalence of HIV infection in the Vulindlela district, but the rate of new infections in women continuing to rise. In Sub-Saharan Africa, women account for 59% of all infected adults. Young women are especially vulnerable. Researcher Marcus Low said that while the research was encouraging, he advised caution when interpreting the results. “It’s good research and it’s encouraging that this kind of research was done in South Africa and by African researchers. Empowering women 11 August 2010 Promising results, further trials needed Overall, 98 women out of the 889 became HIV-positive during the 30 month long trial – with 38 in the tenofovir gel group and 60 in the placebo gel group. Out of the 434 women who tested negative for herpes at the start of the trial, 29 became infected in the tenofovir group and 58 became infected in the placebo group. The study revealed that when the gel was used as clinically specified within 12 hours before and 12 hours after sex, the success rate improved. The microbicide, containing one percent tenofovir – an antiretroviral drug widely used in the treatment of HIV – was found to be 39% effective in reducing a woman’s risk of becoming infected with HIV during sex, and 51% effective in preventing genital herpes infections.last_img read more

Preparing a crop insurance plan for 2018 – Part 2

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Farm Credit recommends farmers take a close look at their crop insurance plan this winter. The Ohio Ag Net’s Ty Higgins has more with Jason Alexander, Senior Vice President of Insurance Services with Farm Credit Mid-America.FCMA Jason Alexander 11.20.17For more financial tips, insights and perspectives from Farm Credit Mid-America, visit

Upstage: A New App for Sharing iOS Mockups

first_imgUpstage is a new mobile application for developers and designers which allows you to easily share iOS app mockups with other team members and external clients. The app has was originally developed as an internal collaboration tool by the folks over at Boxcar, the push notification provider for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch whose own mobile app is a perennial favorite here at ReadWriteWeb.With Upstage, now in public beta, any mobile developer or designer working on iOS applications has access to this tool for free.Why Upstage?According to Boxcar’s CEO Jonathan George, Upstage was built out of a real need iOS designers and developers have today. These team members are continually trying to keep track of ideas, screens and approved designs all in one place, and they need to make those easy to access from wherever they are. They also need to clearly and quickly communicate which designs have been approved for development and which are still in progress. Upstage makes all this possible.Previously, the team at Boxcar was using general purpose tools like Google Apps and 37Signals’ Basecamp product to communicate with each other. While both of those can be used as project management tools, it’s easy to lose important messages about design approvals in various message threads, said George. Something simpler was needed – a single-purpose app designed to address just this specific need. Tags:#apps#How To#mobile Related Posts Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology sarah perez At Boxcar, the company believes in the “design before development” philosophy, so Upstage fits right in. The app makes it easy to communicate between teams, as the designers will sign-off on screens before the developers begin to implement the changes.It has also been used to present designs to its board for major upcoming product changes, says George.How to Use UpstageUsing the app is simple, too. To begin, you just create a project, name it, upload an image (like the logo) and select the project type (iPhone or iPad). After the project is set up, you can use the included file uploader to select an image from your computer and upload it as your first screen. The company has even gone so far as to provide a helpful list of design and development resources on its website, including an online cheat sheet of Apple interface sizes.For now, there is no charge for developers and designers interested in using this product, although the company may choose to charge for it in the future. In the meantime, says Scott Taylor, who created the app along with Jeff Boulet, they’re already working on several new, and much larger, features planned for a future release. No word on what those may be just yet.If you’re interested in trying Upstage yourself, just head over to the website and sign up for an account here.last_img read more

Boom, Crackle, Pop! 10 Impressive Fire VFX Breakdown Videos

first_imgBad BloodArguably the biggest music video success of 2015, Taylor Swift’s Bad Blood is an overload of VFX. Effects supervisor Grant Miller stated that out of 150 shots in the final video, only 2 did not include VFX… incredible. The Foundry, along with VFX house Ingenuity Studios, put together the following video so we could get a glimpse behind the scenes. There aren’t a lot of specifics online about the VFX tools used (besides The Foundry products: MODO 901, HIERO, MARI, NUKE and NUKE). However, this breakdown video sheds some light onto the process, showing a crazy combination of practical and digital effects. Jump to around 2:00 to see the fire VFX.Got any favorite examples fire VFX that we didn’t mention? Let us know in the comments below! Kung Fury80’s pastiche film Kung Fury nearly ‘broke the Internet’ when it was released earlier this year, racking up over 20 million YouTube views-to-date. With an intentionally over-the-top plotline, the film is dominated by inventive intentionally ‘cheesy’ CG shots, that are surprisingly well produced. After raising money on Kickstarter, director David Sandberg created the short film with a budget of $600,000… mostly from his grandmother’s garage (true story). Here’s a wholly composited explosion breakdown that Swedish animation studio Fido created for the film. Fire and Smoke PSAVFX Supervisor Josh Johnson took a minimal approach to fire effects with this PSA for volunteering. Some of the fire effects were created in post (Cinema 4D and TurbulenceFD) and then combined with live-action fire shot on set. The result is realistic and effective. Fire ReelJesse Pitela is a California-based motion designer who’s making a name for himself with his impressive VFX work. Although the following video is not technically a ‘breakdown,’ Jessie shows off some of his fire work… and it’s worth the watch. What I love most about his fire visual effects is A) they’re done completely in post — 3ds Max, Particle Flow, FumeFX, After Effects — and B) how incredibly organic they look. Nice work, Jesse. Fighter BreakdownHere’s an interesting spin on fire VFX – broadcast graphics for an MMA/boxing event. The effect is a bit cheesy (it’s supposed to be) but it really works in this case – and it was created entirely in post. Spot created by Danish motion designer Arash Shadeh. The CrossingBottleship VFX was employed to tackle the fire VFX sequences in John Woo’s epic period project The Crossing. In the following VFX breakdown, a battlefield is set aflame. There’s not a lot of information online about the tools used to create this scene, but with layer upon layer of smoke and fire, it’s certainly impressive. Actual fire can prove a safety nightmare on set and simulated fire is difficult to create. In this post, we’ve rounded up a few examples of films and videos that got it right in post, complete with impressive VFX fire breakdowns showing how they pulled it off.Over the last few years, post-production tools have become increasingly more sophisticated in the creation of realistic fire VFX. Third-party plugins for After Effects (including Trapcode Particular, GenArts’s Monsters GT and Phenomena from DigiEffects) make it accessible for motion designers and video editors to incorporate photo-realistic fire effects into video projects. Advanced users are going even deeper with simulators and render engines like FumeFX in 3DsMax and Maya, TurbulenceFD in Cinema4D, and Cycles in Blender to model physics-based smoke, explosions and fire VFX with advanced refinement.The following impressive VFX fire breakdown videos demonstrate what’s possible when these tools end up in the capable hands of pro motion designers and VFX artists.Project S.E.R.A.Two angles of an exploding building for sci-fi web series Project S.E.R.A. A host of post-production tools were utilized to create this fire and explosion effect in two weeks: 3ds Max, Thinking Particles, FumeFX, Vray and Nuke. Ghost RiderNo fire VFX roundup would be complete without a mention of the ‘infamous’ Ghost Rider franchise. Although the plot and acting leave something to be desired, some of the effects in the films were impressive, especially in 2007 when the first film was released. Here are a few fire VFX breakdowns from the sequel, Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance. Hell on WheelsHoly compositing! For the opener of AMC’s Hell on Wheels, fire elements were shot in camera (Canon 7D), then composited and layered in post using After Effects and Cinema 4D. Additional smoke and ember elements were created with Red Giant’s Trapcode Particular. Insert the actor shot on green screen and you’ve got a memorable title sequence.last_img read more