FROM Maria Ferguson
Is Public Education Too Soft on American Students? " Common Core " is the new public school standards initiative requiring analytical skills with tough math problems and in-depth essays. It was devised by a committee appointed by the National Governors Association, and since 2010 it's been adopted by 45 states and the District of Columbia. Full implementation is planned for next year, but in many places it's already under way, with full implementation planned for next year. But an angry backlash has been developing from both Tea Partiers and progressives. Abysmally low scores on rigorous new tests have shocked teachers, parents and their children from New York to Kentucky. Some states want to abandon ship. What's the role of the Obama Administration? What about Bill Gates and other wealthy advocates of education reform?
Mixed Messages from US diplomats on the new hard line on Syria Since President Trump's surprise retaliation against Syria's use of chemical weapons, Bashar al-Assad has used the same airport to launch conventional attacks on his own people. It's not clear what the US, its allies — or Vladimir Putin's Russia -- plan to do now.
In Janesville, WI, Middle America meets the new American dream Janesville, Wisconsin is the hometown of Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan. But he couldn't prevent the closing of the General Motors factory after 100 years. We hear what's happened to what once was a model of American middle-class unity.
Will the march for science politicize objective research? Protesters are gathering all over the country for tomorrow's Earth Day March for Science. Since President Trump has proposed massive cuts in basic scientific research, will the movement be perceived as partisan politics — whether scientists themselves like it or not?