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Colin Jeffery

Colin Jeffery

Consultant to release Missouri school proposal

Sunday, 12 January 2014 09:29 Published in Local News

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A private education reform group is preparing to release its recommendations for turning around Missouri's unaccredited school systems, even as debate continues over whether the consultant was appropriately awarded the contract.

The Cities for Education Entrepreneurship Trust, or CEE-Trust, has been hired to come up with ideas that could be implemented in the Kansas City school district and potentially also in Normandy, Riverview Gardens or any other districts that become unaccredited. The Indianapolis firm will release its draft recommendations Monday to the State Board of Education.

Missouri Education Commissioner Chris Nicastro has been criticized by some teachers' unions and Democratic lawmakers for the way the consulting contract was awarded. One of the main complaints is that CEE-Trust's bid was nearly three times higher than the closest competitor.

Bill seeks limits on acting department directors

Sunday, 12 January 2014 09:28 Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Openings for the top job at Missouri state agencies no longer could mean an extended reign by a temporary leader under legislation proposed in the state Senate.

Missouri department directors chosen by the governor require Senate confirmation, but acting leaders do not. Two state agencies currently are led by acting chiefs, and Governor Jay Nixon this past week announced he was elevating two other acting directors to permanent positions.

Under the Senate legislation, state department directors would file a designation with the governor and the Legislature naming a deputy director who has the authority to exercise the director's powers during a vacancy. Acting directors could serve for 120 days.

JERUSALEM (AP) — The son of former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon says his father "went when he decided to go." The 85-year-old Sharon died today after spending the last eight years of his life in a coma following a stroke.

The hospital that had been treating him says Sharon had had "ups and downs" during his years in a condition defined as "minimal consciousness."

The hospital said last week that Sharon's health was declining as he began to suffer failure of vital organs including his kidneys.

The hard-charging Sharon was one of Israel's most iconic figures.

After a distinguished, and controversial, military career, he went into politics and held a number of Cabinet posts.

He was elected prime minister in 2001, and despite his hardline views, led Israel's historic withdrawal from the Gaza Strip in 2005.

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