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    PNS Daily News - May 22, 20150 

    Featured on our Friday rundown: new charges in Baltimore against a half dozen police officers in the Freddy Gray case; high school graduation rates are up in Ohio, but disparities persist; a professor says he was punished for raising questions about GMO crops; and tips on safety and avoiding road rage as the summer travel season kicks into gear.

Public News Service - Northeast

PHOTO: New York is going about average according to a new report when it comes to placing children in child welfare with family members. The report says more than 20,000 children in New York still love in group homes.

NEW YORK - A new report says family connections make all the difference and it ranks New York in the middle of the pack for finding stable family settings for children in the child welfare system. One sign of progress in the new report is the way New York is helping to preserve family connections. ...Read More

PHOTO: A new report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation finds that about one in five kids in the Pennsylvania child-welfare system doesn't live with a family, but in a group or institutional setting. It says more should be done to change that. Photo courtesy Pennsylvania Partnerships for Children.

HARRISBURG, Pa. - Pennsylvania needs to do more to find families for children in the child-welfare system, according to a new report by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. About 14,000 kids are in state foster care. The report found that one in five - well above the national average - doesn't live with ...Read More

PHOTO: A new report says too many times kids in the child welfare system end up in group homes or in institutions. In Maryland, about 600 kids go to bed each night without the comfort and care of a family, and instead are in group homes or institutions.

BALTIMORE - Give a kid a family and the odds go up the child will thrive in adulthood, The Annie E. Casey Foundation released a report Tuesday that makes that case, and tracks where children end up when they have to be removed from their familial homes. In Maryland, about 600 kids go to bed withou ...Read More

PHOTO: Summer vacation adventures on public lands could change dramatically if the push to turn federal lands over to state control succeeds, and there have been moves to do that in both the U.S. House and Senate. Photo of beach-goers at Assateague Island courtesy of the National Park Service.

AUGUSTA, Maine – Summer vacation adventures on public lands could change dramatically if the push to turn federal lands over to state control succeeds. Jamie Williams, president of The Wilderness Society, warns allowing state control would lock up lands for private development, and other parc ...Read More

PHOTO: A federal lawsuit alleges the latest federal safety standards proposed for oil tank cars are too weak to adequately protect public safety, especially in light of the large amount of crude oil now traveling by rail. Photo credit: Chris Jordan-Bloch.

NEW YORK - Environmental groups are taking the Obama administration to court over what they call "weak" safety rules for oil shipped by rail. It's a timely issue given last week's fatal Amtrak derailment. Sean Dixon, an attorney with Hudson Riverkeeper, says the rules issued this month don't cont ...Read More

PHOTO: Students who wish to opt out of standardized testing in the Commonwealth now have the backing of the state's largest teachers union. Photo credit: Wikimedia -

BOSTON - While the school year is nearing the end, many students still face a round of standardized testing - and now students who decide to opt out have the state's largest teachers union behind them. Massachusetts Teachers Association president Barbara Madeloni said the union supports students op ...Read More

PHOTO: A new report bolsters New York towns such as Dryden that won the right to zone out fracking because of health and safety concerns. Photo credit: Chris Jordan-Bloch Earthjustice.

ALBANY, N.Y. - A new report backs up Gov. Andrew Cuomo's decision to ban fracking and details a wide range of environmental dangers. Earthjustice managing attorney Deborah Goldberg said the Department of Environmental Conservation report spells out a long list of potential dangers from fracking ope ...Read More

PHOTO: A state Senate plan to shift to privatized public employee pensions would be a bad deal for retirees and would ultimately would leave Pennsylvania taxpayers on the hook, analysts say. Picture courtesy of the state of Pennsylvania.

HARRISBURG, Pa. - Privatized pensions - such as those pressed by state Senate leaders - actually have higher fees and lower returns, analysts say. The Republican lawmakers say they won't approve a state budget until Gov. Tom Wolf accepts their plan for dealing with Pennsylvania's $50 billion pensio ...Read More

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