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African-American unemployment dips to 5-year low

African-American unemployment dips to 5-year low

WASHINGTON – The African-American unemployment rate fell to 11.6 percent in April, the lowest mark since President Barack Obama took office in January 2009, according to the Labor Department's latest jobs report.

In January 2009, the African-American jobless rate was 12.7 percent. The last time the African-American unemployment rate dipped below 12 percent was in November 2008 when the rate was 11.5 percent.

The economy added 288,000 jobs and the national unemployment rate was 6.3 percent in April, down from 6.7 percent in March.

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In Tennessee, paradigm shift required for Common Core

In Tennessee, paradigm shift required for Common Core

Tennessee's implementation of the new Common Core State Standards was a focal point of controversy during this year's legislative session. Kimberly L. King-Jupiter, Ph.D., dean of the College of Education and professor at Tennessee State University, is a veteran educator with experience in international comparative education and higher education administration. She shared a few perspectives on Common Core with New America Media editor Khalil Abdullah.

As the Common Core is being rolled out in Tennessee and other states, are people misinformed about what it is and what it aims to do?

It is less that people are misinformed and more that the conversation has become enmeshed in or overshadowed by partisan politics. What needs to be remembered is that the goal of the Common Core State Standards is to create a generation of students who can literally problem solve. It is now less about rote memorization. I think if you understand the intent, it's not something people could be opposed to.

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Study: U.S. teachers Don’t reflect the diversity of students

Study: U.S. teachers Don’t reflect the diversity of students

A new study from the Center for American Progress and National Education Association has shown that U.S. teachers don't reflect the diversity of their students. According to the study, nearly half of the students who attend public schools are minorities and yet, less than 1 in five of their teachers are nonwhite, Associated Press reports.

The study hopes to call attention to this "diversity gap" at elementary and secondary schools in the United States and both groups believe more can be done to help create more diverse classrooms.

"It becomes easier for students to believe "when they can look and see someone who looks just like them, that they can relate to," Kevin Gilbert, coordinator of teacher leadership and special projects for the Clinton Public School District in Clinton, Mississippi told AP. "Nothing can help motivate our students more than to see success standing right in front of them."

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Obama mocks ‘Stellar 2013’ at White House Correspondents’ Dinner

Obama mocks ‘Stellar 2013’ at White House Correspondents’ Dinner

President Barack Obama hammered failed GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney for his infamous comment about poor Americans and the "47 percent" during the campaign trail. On Saturday, the president turned the remark against himself during his speech at the White House Correspondents' Dinner in Washington, D.C.

And so it went. No topic was sacred at the 100th anniversary celebration dinner at the Hilton in Washington, D.C., including the botched rollout of HealthCare.gov, the Republican Party and the media. Comedian and actor Joel McHale of NBC's Community served as host.

Obama, who spoke for 20 minutes, said HealthCare.gov "could've gone better," but said that it instead turned into one of the year's biggest movies, before switching to a title screen for the film Frozen.

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Lawmakers reconsider mandatory minimum prison terms

Lawmakers reconsider mandatory minimum prison terms

WASHINGTON – Ordered to prison on wire fraud charges, Andrea James embraced her 12-year-old daughter and five-month-old son before saying goodbye for two years.

A rude awakening and a harsh reality check awaited James, a disgraced lawyer, as prison officials escorted her to her new home: a small cell block where she'd bunk with other women of the same skin color.

"No one really told me about the injustices until I became incarcerated," said James, 49. "What I encountered as a black woman walking into prison was heartbreaking because all I saw were black women, many of whom had never even received a parking ticket before but ran into a little trouble because they made a decision, a tough decision, on how they were going to feed their babies."

 

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“Kid President” visits Capitol Hill

“Kid President” visits Capitol Hill

WASHINGTON – The office of U.S. Senator Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) on Friday welcomed Tennessean and YouTube sensation Kid President – also known as Robby Novak, 10 – to Capitol Hill. Following a tour of the U.S. Capitol, Novak toured Corker's office and spoke with the senator by phone.

"Our office was proud to welcome Robby, a fellow Tennessean, to Capitol Hill," said Corker.

"His focus on making the world a better place has inspired children and adults all across the country, and candidly, Washington could learn a thing or two from Robby about bringing people together. I thank him for the example he is setting and wish him all the best in the future."

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Los Angeles NAACP president resigns amid Sterling scandal

Los Angeles NAACP president resigns amid Sterling scandal

The president of the Los Angeles chapter of the NAACP, Leon Jenkins, resigned Thursday, amid continued fallout from a decision to award embattled LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling and a report posted on The Root chronicling a history of Jenkins' misdeeds since his days of being a judge in Detroit during the 1980s.

In a letter to the national leader of the NAACP, Jenkins wrote, "In order to separate the Los Angeles NAACP and the NAACP from the negative exposure I have caused the NAACP, I respectfully resign my position as president of the Los Angeles NAACP."

Jenkins came under intense scrutiny after it was announced that the LA chapter of the NAACP planned to present Sterling with a second "lifetime achievement award" later this month.

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