Common Core — the new set of national education standards in math and English language arts — will take effect in most states next year. This move toward a single set of standards has been embraced by a bipartisan crowd of politicians and educators largely because of what the Common Core standards are replacing: a mess.
In years past, the education landscape was a discord of state standards. A fourth grader in Arkansas could have appeared proficient in reading by his state's standards — but, by the standards of another state, say Massachusetts, not even close.
Duncan's summer is filled with awkward — and often adult-initiated — situations involving the girl next door (Annasophia Robb).
Credit Claire Folger / Fox Searchlight
Husband Kip (Rob Corddry, left) and wife Joan (Amanda Peet) join Duncan (Liam James), his mom (Toni Collette) and her smarmy new boyfriend (Steve Carell) on a seaside vacation in <em>The Way, Way Back</em>.
The coming-of-age story is a summer-movie staple — as writers Nat Faxon and Jim Rash, who struck Oscar gold with The Descendants in 2011, can attest.
Their latest film, The Way, Way Back, is another entry in the canon; it's the tale of an awkward teenager, Duncan, who's floundering through a seaside vacation when he's taken under the wing of Owen, the sweetly demented manager of a summer water park. Comedy ensues — and in passing, Duncan learns some important lessons about adulthood.
In local television news, one of the most basic ways to appeal to viewers is the constant promise of breaking news. As NPR media correspondent David Folkenflik reports, one station in Louisville, Kentucky is taking a different approach and it's beginning to win attention for it.
DAVID FOLKENFLIK, BYLINE: The spot is for WDRB television in Louisville.
Former girlfriend Chrissie Shrimpton, who dated Jagger before he was a superstar, sold the hair. It went for about $6,000, which is more than four times what someone once paid for Rolling Stone bandmate Keith Richard's hair.
The Bay Area Rapid Transit agency and its two largest unions have reached an agreement — sort of. The unions are ending the five-day strike that halted commuter-rail service throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. BART and the unions agreed to extend their contracts for a month while negotiations continue.
National Security Agency headquarters at Fort Meade, Md.
Credit Saul Loeb / AFP/Getty Images
Dozens of senators have <a href="http://www.wyden.senate.gov/news/press-releases/bipartisan-group-of-26-senators-seek-answers-from-dni-clapper-on-bulk-data-collection-program">written</a> to Director of National Intelligence James Clapper asking him "to publicly provide information about the duration and scope" of the data-collection program.
It would not be an exaggeration to call the recently completed Supreme Court term a lollapalooza. Day-by-day on the last week of the court term, the justices handed down one legal thunderbolt after another: same-sex marriage, voting rights, affirmative action. The end-of-term crush of opinions made so many headlines that other important decisions got little public notice.
For at least a millennium, the heart of Britain's commercial and financial industries has been the City of London.
The City is not the large metropolis we know as London. It's much older and smaller. Many call it the Square Mile, though it's not square and a bit bigger than a mile. It's the home to big banks, medieval alleyways and St. Paul's Cathedral. And, for all those centuries, the area has had the same local government with an unusual name: The City of London Corporation.
Buster Sussman, 86, shown with his art instructor, Randall Williams, is a former real estate reporter who only recently started painting. His paintings were on display at the Burbank Senior Artists Colony.
Some famous writers, painters and musicians have done some of their best work in their later years — impressionist Claude Monet, for one. But at the North Hollywood Senior Arts Colony, older people are proving that you don't have to be famous — or even a professional artist — to live a creatively fulfilling life in old age.
With a fully equipped theater and painting and sculpture studios, there seems to be rehearsals or exhibitions of some sort going on here all the time.
The Bizzaro brothers — James, 81 (left) and Paul, 82 — spent their childhoods living in a house right behind the Statue of Liberty.
The island that serves as home to the Statue of Liberty — shown here in 1952 — was called Bedloe's Island until 1956, when its name was changed to Liberty Island. It recently reopened after suffering damage from Superstorm Sandy.
Brothers Paul and James Bizzaro, both in their 80s, spent their childhoods living in a house right behind the Statue of Liberty. Their family moved to the same small island in New York Harbor as Lady Liberty 75 years ago this summer, not long after their father, also James, became a guard at the statue.
When the Bizzaros moved to what's now called Liberty Island in 1937, Paul was 8 and James was 6.
"Half of the island was for the visitors. The half that we lived in, we had that whole half to us," says James.
Why does anyone buy Bayer aspirin — or Tylenol, or Advil — when, almost always, there's a bottle of cheaper generic pills, with the same active ingredient, sitting right next to the brand-name pills?
Matthew Gentzkow, an economist at the University of Chicago's Booth school, recently tried to answer this question. Along with a few colleagues, Gentzkow set out to test a hypothesis: Maybe people buy the brand-name pills because they just don't know that the generic version is basically the same thing.
World-class snowboarder Kevin Pearce suffered a severe brain injury in a brutal 2009 crash captured by cameras he and his teammates were wearing. His road to recovery — and to a new sense of self — is the central narrative thread of the documentary <em>The Crash Reel.</em>
Credit HBO Pictures
High-energy footage evokes the thrills viewers crave from watching extreme sports — and suggests the audience's complicity in the crashes and injuries that are the inevitable cost.
"You need to be prepared for the Kevin who comes back not to be the same Kevin."
That's what a doctor told the parents of snowboarder Kevin Pearce following the brain injury he suffered in late 2009, while training for the Vancouver Olympics.
Those words, simple but painful for a parent to hear, are essentially what Lucy Walker's moving documentary, The Crash Reel, is about: the way traumatic brain injuries — wounds that, after recovery, can seemingly be invisible — leave their victims no choice but to be different people.
If you're watching fireworks tonight, here's how you can tell you're looking at a top-shelf display and not some cut-rate carnival sideshow. Look for the blue fireworks. Are they true blue, not pale or purple or mauve?
The color blue has been the Holy Grail for pyrotechnics experts since fireworks were invented more than a millennium ago. It's by far the hardest color to produce. But why? For that, we turn to John Conkling. He's technical director of the American Pyrotechnics Association. John Conkling, welcome.
Congress is in recess this 4th of July week and, for a change, it's a real recess. Lawmakers haven't bothered with the kind of going through the motions sessions, a relatively recent political strategy that have marked some past legislative breaks. That suggests at least a temporary truce between the Senate and the White House over the contentious issue of presidential appointments.