BC-NC-PROPOSED SOCIAL STUDIES STANDARDS
State’s proposed social studies standards prompt debate
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Efforts in North Carolina to make social studies standards more inclusive are drawing complaints as well as praise. The Raleigh News & Observer reported that reaction on Wednesday to the proposed standards was largely split along partisan lines. The State Board of Education reviewed proposed K-12 standards that include language such as having teachers discuss systemic discrimination and the perspectives of marginalized groups. Republican Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson said the new standards appear to be political in nature. Board member Jill Camnitz said the standards are not about blame and guilt. She said the standards seek to draw “on the richness of the American historical experience” so that children can “better appreciate their legacy.”
BC-NC-DEER KILLING-RESIDENTIAL AREA
Police: Killing of deer in residential area was ‘dangerous’
SOUTHERN SHORES, N.C. (AP) — Police in a town in North Carolina’s Outer Banks are investigating after someone shot and killed a deer with an arrow inside the town’s limits. The Town of Southern Shores police department said in a statement that the deer was found dead on Saturday morning. Police said the town code prohibits the shooting or discharging of arrows within the town’s corporate limits. Police said the killing of the deer with an arrow “is extremely dangerous in a residential community, especially in common areas where people recreate. It is not safe, and it is unacceptable.”
N. Carolina town seeks to revitalize its downtown area
APEX, N.C. (AP) — Officials in a North Carolina town have created a plan to revitalize the town’s downtown area by repurposing parking lots and beatifying a street in order to attract visitors and investments. The News & Observer reports Apex’s downtown area will be redesigned through the Downtown Master Plan. The plan calls for other things, including 100 new housing units and new parking lots. Town officials want to repurpose existing parking lots for outdoor dining and walking. A city official says about $3.75 million will be spent on portions of the project pending the approval of the town council in June. The changes are set to be completed by 2023.
Snow, ice expected in parts of South, with storms in others
ATLANTA (AP) — Forecasters say a storm system will bring snow to some parts of the South and potentially severe thunderstorms to others. The National Weather Service says the storms expected Thursday and Friday along the central Gulf Coast could include brief tornadoes. Snow and ice will be the main threats in the Appalachian Mountains. A winter storm warning that goes into effect Thursday night and continues into Friday covered much of the north Georgia mountains. Residents there are expecting up to 4 inches of snow and some ice that could make travel treacherous. Winter storm warnings also covered parts of Tennessee, North Carolina and Virginia.
VIRUS OUTBREAK-NORTH CAROLINA
NC keeps 10pm curfew; Those 75 or older begin vaccinations
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper has extended the statewide curfew but added no new restrictions on businesses or individuals. Several counties in the state have begun vaccinating adults 75 years or older. Public health officials are warning that demand is outpacing supply and will continue to be limited in the coming weeks. Hospital workers that have come into frequent contact with COVID-19 were prioritized first. The state hopes education will help boost vaccine participation among workers in long-term care settings, such as nursing homes.
VIRUS OUTBREAK-NORTH CAROLINA-COURTS
New NC chief justice seeks vaccine access for court system
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina’s new chief justice says he’s asked Gov. Roy Cooper to consider getting COVID-19 vaccines more quickly to local court officials to meet a requirement to keep open the courts. Chief Justice Paul Newby made the remark at Wednesday’s online installation ceremony for himself and two new justices. Court activities in all 100 counties have been dramatically scaled back since the pandemic began. Last month, outgoing Chief Justice Cheri Beasley delayed most court proceedings statewide for 30 days, citing a case surge. Associate Justices Phil Berger Jr. and Tamara Barringer also participated in Wednesday’s ceremony.
Tech firms planning offices despite work-from-home trend
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The coronavirus pandemic has forced many people to work from home, but there are signs that office life will continue in North Carolina’s Research Triangle. The Raleigh News & Observer reported Wednesday that some tech firms are planning new offices in the region despite the recent trend of working from home. For instance, Epic Games announced last week that it would buy Cary Towne Center for $95 million. The firm has promised to redevelop the dying mall into a world-class headquarters for potentially thousands of workers. Pendo and Bandwidth are also going full-speed ahead with their new headquarters. Leaders of those companies have called office-based work a big part of their culture.
MENTAL HEALTH FIRST AID
Community college to offer course in mental health first aid
ELIZABETH CITY, N.C. (AP) — College of the Albemarle in Elizabeth City says it will offer a course in first aid for mental health amid the surge of mental health challenges brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. The Virginian-Pilot reported Wednesday that the community college will conduct the eight-hour course this spring. It will be for students in the school’s human services technology program, which is for entry-level positions in mental health fields. The course will eventually be offered to professionals in such areas as law enforcement and education. Mental health first aid works much like first aid for physical injuries. It helps a person assist someone contemplating suicide, having a panic attack or another emergency.
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