The school superintendent in East St. Louis says some teachers used "inappropriate strategies and techniques" to inflate students scores on standardized achievement tests.
District 189 Superintendent Arthur Culver told the Belleville News-Democrat's editorial board on Wednesday that elementary test scores will likely drop this year. Culver didn't call the teachers' actions cheating and he didn't cite any schools by name. He also didn't describe or give examples of the questionable methods the teachers allegedly used.
A litter of three swift foxes, two females and one male, has been born at the Endangered Wolf Center in Eureka – the first in a dozen years. The four-week-old foxes will get their first round of vaccinations today.
The kits are being raised by a trio of adult foxes – the breeding female’s sister is helping the parents care for their young.
Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn has signed nearly $1.6 billion worth of cuts to Medicaid into law.
His signature means that nearly 25,000 working parents will lose state-funded health care on July 1. Regular dental care is being eliminated for adults. Those who need eyeglasses will be able to get a new pair once every two years. And patients who take more than four prescription drugs will have to get prior approval from the state.
Quinn this morning also signed a dollar-a-pack increase in the state’s cigarette tax.
Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon will be in St. Louis today to sign legislation that allows people to add cellphones to the state’s Do Not Call list.
Nixon created the list when he was attorney general. Cellphone numbers added to the list would be off limits to most solicitations, including text messages.
Attorney General Chris Koster, whose office maintains the list, is expected to join Nixon. Koster says his office gets nearly 200 complaints a week from cellphone users about unwanted telemarketing calls.
The scam is known as "smishing," and it involves text messages telling recipients that they’ve won prizes or gift cards from big-name retailers such as Wal-Mart or Costco and instructs them to claim them by clicking on a link. Attorney General Chris Koster (D) says clicking the link will infect phones with malware that gives identity thieves access to personal information.
Whether Mo. House member Jamilah Nasheed will qualify to be on the Democratic primary ballot against incumbent Sen. Robin Wright-Jones in the 5th Senate District is now up to the Missouri Supreme Court.
The Missouri Court of Appeal's Eastern District said in a ruling Wednesday that Nasheed does not appear to meet the residency requirement for running in the 5th District. But the court transferred the case to the state Supreme Court because of the importance and general interest of the issue.
The associate director of Washington University in St. Louis' Genome Institute, George Weinstock, was one of this project's lead researchers. He says we have about ten times more microbial cells in our body than we have human cells.
He told our reporter Véronique LaCapra today:
“...there’s probably a hundred times or more microbial genes in our body than there are genes in our human genome,” Weinstock said. “So the microbes, they’re not just a small little part of us, they’re really a very, very large, perhaps almost dominant part of our body.”
The human body contains about 100 trillion cells, but only maybe one in 10 of those cells is actually human. The rest are from bacteria, viruses and other microorganisms. Now, scientists have unveiled the first survey the "human microbiome," which includes 10,000 species and more than 8 million genes.