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A new report from the National Institute of Early Education Research (NIEER) concludes that Georgia does a good job educating the state’s four-year-olds, but there’s room for improvement.

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"The Lemon Jell-O Syndrome" cover courtesy Unbridled Books; photo credit Mattie Bell

Tuesday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Joseph Guay

Five of Atlanta’s most recognizable and prolific dancers have started their own dance company, the Terminus Modern Ballet Theatre.

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Until recently, those dancers–John Welker, Tara Lee, Christian Clark, Rachel van Buskirk and Heath Kill–owed their recognition to their tenures at the Atlanta Ballet. All either retired or resigned from, or were let go by, the ballet.

Kirsty Wigglesworth / Associated Press

Tuesday on "Closer Look with Rose Scott and Jim Burress:"

Alison Guillory / WABE

Some of the rain that falls in downtown Atlanta eventually forms Proctor Creek, which flows through the west side of the city and into the Chattahoochee River. Like the rest of Atlanta's creeks, Proctor Creek is polluted. But it still has wildlife living in it. Scientists are learning more about the health of the creek and its critters by studying crayfish.  

  A longer version of this story was published and aired last fall. 

Pablo Martinez Monsivais / Associated Press

Former CIA Director John Brennan said Tuesday he personally warned Russia last summer against interfering in the U.S. presidential campaign, telling the Russians that continued meddling would backfire and prevent and warming of relations after the election.


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Now-Education Secretary Betsy DeVos testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017, at her confirmation hearing before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.
Carolyn Kaster / Associated Press file

The Trump administration is proposing "the most ambitious expansion" of school choice in American history, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos announced Monday while giving few details on how the program would work.


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Metro Atlanta received about two inches of rain within the last week.
Kay Gaensler / Kay Gaensler Photography - Creative Commons

The threat of flooding continues across several Southern states as heavy rain soaked the area and prompted new flood watches in the Carolinas while a massive storm system swept eastward.


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The National Weather Service said flash flood watches early Tuesday extended from southeast Louisiana across Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, the Carolinas and a sliver of southern Virginia.


In South Georgia, the weather service says there is a threat of tornadoes Tuesday.

Mike Stewart / Associated Press

Amid Georgia’s opioid problem, a new drug has entered the market. “Gray death,” a cocktail of several opioids, was reported to have claimed its first death in Georgia last week.

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Despite efforts to curtail the spread of opioids in the Southeast, drugs are getting even stronger and more deadly, according to Georgia Bureau of Investigation public affairs director Nelly Miles.

The Supreme Court is seen in the morning in Washington, Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2017.
Jose Luis Magana / Associated Press

Georgia may feel the effects of the U.S. Supreme Court decision overruling voting districts in North Carolina.

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State lawmakers there claimed they drew the districts for political advantage. But the high court decided they used race as a main factor, and that was unconstitutional.

Michael Kang, a law professor at Emory University, said the decision could have a big impact in Southern states, like Georgia, where party preference tends to fall along racial lines.

A TSA explosives detection dog sniffs passengers as they go through a security checkpoint at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.
David Goldman / Associated Press

The FBI will nearly double its staffing at Atlanta's airport and expand its office space.


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The Atlanta-Journal Constitution reports the Atlanta City Council has approved a plan for the federal agency to lease the additional space at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.


FBI spokesman Stephen Emmett says the increase to about a dozen agents and task force officers means a significant increase in readiness at the world's busiest airport.


Voter Registration Numbers Surge In 6th District

May 22, 2017
David Goldman / Associated Press

More than 5,000 people have registered to vote in Georgia's 6th Congressional District in the last 19 days.

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Earlier this month, on May 4, a federal judge order the state to reopen voter registration for the runoff between Republican candidate Karen Handel and Democratic candidate Jon Ossoff. It has become one of the most closely watched congressional races in the country. Registration for the June 20 runoff closed Sunday, May 21. 

Alison Guillory / WABE

Proctor Creek flows out of downtown Atlanta through the west side of the city. There have long been problems with the health of the creek, especially flooding and pollution. 

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That can lead to health problems for the people who live near the creek, which flows through 35 Atlanta neighborhoods on its way to the Chattahoochee River.

Kate Brumback, File / Associated Press

Monday on "Closer Look with Rose Scott and Jim Burress:"

Coolray Field, formerly Gwinnett Stadium, has been home to the Gwinnett Braves since 2009.
Karl Moore

The Triple-A Gwinnett Braves are asking fans to assist in choosing a new team name for the 2018 season. The hope is the change will reduce confusion with the Atlanta Braves, and fill seats at the minor league franchise's games.

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Just this weekend, Gwinnett Braves Manager North Johnson says the team had a promotional table set up at a lacrosse game.

Frank Franklin II / Associated Press

For 20 years, Chuck Klosterman has written about sports, rock-and-roll, ethics, movies, TV — pretty much everything we consider popular culture, or for that matter, culture.

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His work has appeared in the The New York Times, Spin, GQ, Esquire, Grantland and other publications. His 10th book, "X," (pronounced "10") is out now and features a wide range of his published work from the past decade.

Courtesy of New Puppet Order

Monday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

  • 1:45: Lois Reitzes speaks with author Chuck Klosterman about his new book “X.”
  • 42:01: Gabbie Watts speaks with two production companies in Atlanta that make films with puppets. 

Associated Press

“Sgt. Pepper" was only the beginning. Half a century after the Beatles' psychedelic landmark, it stands as one of many musical astonishments of 1967 that shaped what we listen to now.

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It was a year of technical, lyrical and rhythmic innovation, of the highest craftsmanship and most inspired anti-craftsmanship.


Alison Guillory / WABE

There’s a polluted waterway that runs from downtown Atlanta to the Chattahoochee River. It’s called Proctor Creek.

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For decades, it’s caused problems for people who live near it.  Now, there’s a lot more attention on the future of the creek, and neighborhoods on the Westside.

This is part of a continuing series about Proctor Creek that airs on "Morning Edition" with WABE host Denis O'Hayer.

In Rome, Old Attitudes Still Cast Shadow Over HIV Fight

May 22, 2017
Victoria Knight / Georgia Health News

“The ‘H’ stands for human, not homosexual,” said Frank Tant, as he perched on the edge of a worn brown couch in the main room at the AIDS Resource Council in Rome.

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He’s talking about the “H” in human immunodeficiency virus, identified more than 30 years ago as the cause of AIDS. The disease itself had been recognized only a few years before.

The Georgia Ports Authority said more than 3.4 million container units moved through the ports of Savannah and Brunswick in 2016.
Stephen B. Morton / Associated Press

Georgia's seaports in Savannah and Brunswick are on track to show record growth for the 2017 fiscal year that wraps up at the end of June, the chief executive of the Georgia Ports Authority said Monday.


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Total cargo moving through the two ports is expected to top the nearly 32 million tons (29 million metric tons) of imports and exports Georgia saw in fiscal 2015, the ports' busiest year ever, said Griff Lynch, the authority's executive director.

Student's Cannabis Oil Legal In Georgia; Schools Say Otherwise

May 22, 2017
State Rep. Allen Peake, R-Macon, speaks before Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal, rear, signs an executive order requiring state agencies to start preparations now for the enactment of the state's medical marijuana bill Friday, March 27, 2015, in Atlanta.
David Goldman / Associated Press

Each day about lunchtime at Warner Robins High School, 17-year-old CJ Harris must leave campus to take his medicine.

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His dad, Curtis Harris, drives to school, gets CJ out of class, and the two ride around the block or sometimes head home. CJ draws some cannabis oil in a syringe, squirts it under his tongue and waits for it to dissolve.


He's been taking the medicine every six hours for the past four months for epilepsy.


MARTA Ridership Takes A Hit After I-85 Overpass Reopens

May 22, 2017
Alison Guillory / WABE

When the Interstate 85 overpass collapsed in late March, many metro-Atlanta commuters depended on MARTA to get to and from work. MARTA's daily usage numbers surged 11.5 to 12 percent. 

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But now that the overpass has re-opened, how many people are still using public transit? 

Will Heath / NBC via AP

A teen Instagram dancing sensation has gone from online to on-air after Katy Perry invited him to show off his moves during her "Saturday Night Live" performance this weekend.

Fifteen-year-old Russell Horning took the "SNL" stage during Perry's performance of her new single "Swish Swish." He wore his trademark backpack and did his signature move of quickly swaying his hands around his waist.

Global Warming: Summer In The Winter? Sounds Awesome, Right? Not So Much

May 22, 2017
via Pixabay

Do you remember that episode of “Phineas and Ferb” where they made it snow during the summer? They called it S’Winter, and all of the kids slid down huge heaps of snow, built snowmen and had crazy snowball fights in June!

When we were younger, the concept sounded pretty cool. I mean, snow during the hottest time of the year? That sounded amazing to the 12-year-old me! But what if, instead of making it snow during the summer, they made it hot during the winter? That would’ve been even better, right? Well, sure, from an animation standpoint. In real life? Not so much.

Kathleen Foody / Associated Press

Georgia schools are continuing efforts to win over picky eaters, using taste tests, chef visits and school gardens to encourage kids to pick up healthier items even as the state's former governor hit the pause button on some stricter nutrition standards for school meals as a top member of the Trump administration.


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Ric Feld / associated press file

Flash flood watches extended across a half-dozen states as torrential rains were expected in many areas of the South.


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The National Weather Service said flash flood watches Monday morning extended from the Texas Gulf coast through large parts of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Georgia.


A small part of the Florida panhandle was also under a flash flood watch early Monday.


Chris Carlson / Associated Press

For Atlanta Dream co-owner Mary Brock, there is practically a straight line between the basketball court and the board room, and she has data to back it up.

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“There have been so many studies and surveys done about successful women,” Brock said to In Conversation host Valerie Jackson. “If you look at women who are successful in business and you survey them and find out if they participated in sports at any time in their lives, over 80 percent participated in sports.”

2015 had the highest reported youth suicides in the past five years.
Martha Dalton / WABE

Eighteen children in Georgia have killed themselves this year. And state officials are working to stop and prevent those suicides.

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The Georgia Bureau of Investigation’s Child Fatality Review Program teamed up with state education and health officials to create a new training program for school personnel.

The program focuses on teaching educators warning signs in students and figuring out way to get the issue of suicide out in the open at their schools.

campus carry
Jaime Henry-White, File / Associated Press

Georgia's public colleges and technical schools will soon have to let students with permits carry concealed guns some places on campus. The new law bans guns in certain areas, including spaces where high school students take classes. However, that part of the bill could cause confusion.  

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