National / International News

Zimbabwe expelled from 2018 World Cup

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 02:49
Zimbabwe are expelled from 2018 World Cup qualifying for failing to pay national team coach Jose Claudinei Georgini.

South Africa power chiefs suspended

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 02:43
South Africa's power utility Eskom tells four top officials to step aside while it investigates the problems at the firm, including recent power cuts.

Blurred Lines verdict to be appealed

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 02:27
Musicians Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke are to appeal the verdict which ruled that they copied a Marvin Gaye track to create their hit 2013 track Blurred Lines.

Iraqi forces 'push into Tikrit'

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 02:18
Iraqi government forces are pushing into Tikrit on several fronts, forcing Islamic State militants to fall back to the city centre, officials say.

BBC in school computer giveaway

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 02:15
The BBC has launched its Make it Digital initiative with new hardware for schools and a raft of coding-based content.

UK trade deficit narrows sharply

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 02:13
The UK trade deficit narrowed to £616m in January from a five-year high of £2.1bn in December, latest figures reveal, as imports shrink substantially.

Divorce win 'like old lottery ticket'

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 02:04
A woman seeking £1.9m more than 20 years after a divorce is being allowed to "cash in a very old lottery ticket", her millionaire ex-husband says.

The new digital classroom, brought to you by SXSW

Marketplace - American Public Media - Thu, 2015-03-12 02:04

Before the techies and music lovers descend on Austin for South by Southwest, or SXSW, there’s SXSWedu.

Senior reporter Adriene Hill, and the LearningCurve edtech team have been at the education conference all week. Adriene spoke with Marketplace host, Kai Ryssdal, about which new technologies were grabbing the attention of educators. 

Tom Leonard, superintendent of Eanes Independent School District in Austin, says introducing laptops and tablets into classrooms has been hard at times, and teachers took some time to get on board, but there's no going back. 

“Technology in schools right now is like the infancy of the automobile,” he says. “For a while when the automobile was just starting, the horse was more effective, it really was. But we knew we were going in the direction of the car, so we had to get there. And right now I think that’s what’s happening in classrooms. You are seeing teachers struggle with that, but good school districts know we need to get there.” 

And tech entrepreneurs want to get there right along with them. Billions of dollars are pouring into edtech as software makers, among others, vie for a place in the classroom.

One area that's getting a lot of attention is "making."  The “Playground” area of SXSWedu was full of products focused on kids building things, using 3D doodlers and Lego robots. 

There’s also a big focus on coding. “Coding is now pushing down into the lower grades, we’re talking kindergarten level,” says Claire Novy, a teacher from Miami. Get ready for second-graders to be showcasing their work in the app store. 

Along with all the tech talk, there has been a growing discussion about what's called social and emotional learning, or SEL. It focuses on kids' views of themselves as learners, and how their perceptions can help — or hinder — their ability to learn. Expect to hear more in the future about student emotional health.

Superintendent Leonard says he expects to see more entrepreneurial programs in schools, aimed at teaching kids how to create their own jobs in the future. 

Dallas Dance, superintendent of Baltimore County public schools, is looking forward to new organizational tools that will bring much of a school's data together.

"Usually school systems have about five different systems they operate from,” he says. “Your learning management system can be one, your grade book’s another, your student information system’s one, you may have a data dashboard or a warehouse somewhere else. We are creating [a database] which will be a one stop shop for everyone.”

That includes parents, who may have an easier time in the future keeping up with their childrens' educational lives.

S Africa reward over TV news mugging

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 02:01
South African police offer a reward of 100,000 rand (£5,500; $8,200) for the arrest of two men who mugged a well-known TV journalist on camera.

Sarah Payne memorial statue found

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 01:57
A bronze statue commemorating murdered schoolgirl Sarah Payne that was stolen from her primary school in Surrey is found.

VIDEO: Are Christians having to hide their religion?

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 01:56
The Equality and Human Rights Commission has published a report that highlights the widespread confusion and misunderstanding about the laws protecting freedom of religion or belief.

Still Alice film-maker dies aged 63

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 01:54
The co-author and director of Still Alice - for which Julianne Moore won an Oscar last month - has died following a four-year struggle with motor neurone disease.

Spanish bank in TSB takeover bid

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 01:52
TSB - the bank formerly owned by Lloyds - has confirmed it has received a preliminary £1.7bn takeover approach from Spanish bank Sabadell.

Fatal fire in Russian shopping centre

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 01:46
Five people have died and up to 25 people are feared trapped in rubble after a fire at a shopping centre in the Russian city of Kazan.

India refuses to lift rape film ban

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 01:43
A court in India refuses to lift a ban on screening a controversial BBC documentary about the 2012 Delhi gang rape.

IS 'using chlorine gas' in bombs

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 01:37
Iraqi officials show the BBC footage, which they say proves Islamic State militants are using chlorine gas in roadside bomb attacks.

Right policies with wrong figures?

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 01:19
Can politicians take the right decisions based on the wrong figures?

'I had Chelsea babies around me'

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 01:14
Chelsea's players acted like "babies" during Zlatan Ibrahimovic's sending off, the Paris St-Germain striker says.

South Africa ease into last eight

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 01:07
AB de Villiers makes 99 as South Africa comfortably defeat United Arab Emirates to reach the World Cup quarter-finals.

Council removing tree-top protesters

BBC - Thu, 2015-03-12 01:06
Enforcement action starts to remove a group of people perched in trees at an allotment for a month in protest over bus route plans.

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