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Sunday headlines

Apr 17, 2011 9:09 am
Viewshed Symposium shines light on valley
Paul Crossman reports in the Register-Star that about 200 people packed into Columbia-Greene Community College for the first annual "Framing the Viewshed: The Transformative Power of Art and Landscape in the Hudson Valley" symposium, hosted by CGCC and Olana on Saturday, April 16. The symposium featured a number of speakers discussing the importance of the aesthetic aspects of Columbia County and the Hudson Valley, the various changes that have occurred since artists first began to paint the region’s beautiful landscapes, and the importance of keeping this viewshed area pristine. The event itself focused on three different aspects of the viewsheds — artistic, environmental, and historical, and the various speakers addressed each point in different ways, using powerpoint presentations, example artwork, historical examples, question and answer sessions, and even a panel discussion. “We think that this event is the first of its kind,” said Olana Partnership President Sara Griffen. “The idea is to explore the subject of viewsheds in a serious, historical, and holistic way.”

Carlucci introduces legislation to promote local farms
Mid Hudson News Network notes that State Senator David Carlucci (D-Rockland-Orange counties) has proposed legislation to preserve, promote and grow New York’s local farms by suggesting that any restaurant that buys produce from within a 100 mile radius of their establishment would receive tax credits, he said. Under his legislation, restaurateurs would receive a $100 tax credit for every $1,000 worth of local produce purchased.

East Durham pair charged in check fraud
Colin DeVries writes in the Daily Mail that Shannon T. Higgins, 45, and William K. Marino, both of East Durham, were arrested April 15 in a scheme to cash a Columbia-Greene Community College check made out to Marino’s roommate. State police allege that Marino forged the name of the CGCC student on the back of the check worth more than $2,000 and deposited it into Higgins’ personal bank account. Both suspects were charged with fourth-degree grand larceny, a class E felony, and Marino was charged with second-degree forgery, a class D felony. Higgins was issued an appearance ticket returnable to Cairo Town Court. Marino was arraigned in Cairo Town Court and remanded to the Greene County Jail in lieu of $10,000 cash or $20,000 bond.

The importance of school food
Lynn Sloneker has a link on her Unmuffled education blog to a fabulous piece by Kim Marshall about the nation's need to pay more attention to school food. Amongst what's there: School food affects student achievement; Studies are increasingly showing a link between good nutrition and academic success. School food affects teaching; Many educators eat school food, so its nutritional value is important to their performance. Food affects school spending; The money earned from junk food sales benefits schools, which is why some administrators are unwilling to curtail such sales. Schools teach children about food; There’s a “hidden curriculum” in current practices, which can be counteracted by more explicit teaching (and actions) on nutrition. School food is a window into identity and culture. Furthermore, the piece notes how school food affects the environment because of the massive number of meals served in schools every day; making up a significant (and stable) part of the economy; and school food can be a wedge issue, politically. Read this.

ICC looks at district merge
John Mason reports in the Register-Star that talk of merging the Ichabod Crane and Schodack school districts inched forward recently with a joint meeting of districts' board members at Maple Hill Middle School. The two districts received a grant from the Department of State to study the possibility of consolidating services and potentially merging the districts. The study is scheduled to be completed Oct. 31.Questions discussed focused on whether the possible merger would take the form of a centralization or an annexation, with the assumption being centralization. That led to talk about school identity. Advisory committees for the process, which will each include 15 to 18 members, are still being appointed. According to a tentative timeline, their first meetings will be on or about May 3, and they will continue to meet until July 15.

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