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Although it looked like Ariana Grande might literally want her fans to just watch the clock — the countdown clock, that is, that showed up on her website last Sunday — she got more specific on Thursday about the most immediate thing being counted down to. 'Positions,' the first single from her upcoming sixth studio album, will debut as the clock strikes 12 this Thursday morning. But Grande has two clocks ticking on her site, with the second one counting the seconds until a full album drops one week later, as the calendar clicks over to October 29.
SEATTLE (AP) — Football star Russell Wilson and his wife Ciara, the Grammy-winning performer, are the latest wealthy philanthropists to back a charter school — though the celebrity couple say they’re not focused on the politically charged school choice issue and undeterred by challenges that have plagued Washington state’s charter sector.
Through their Why Not You Foundation, Wilson and Ciara are contributing about $1.75 million to rebrand an existing charter program known as Cascade Midway Academy, just south of Seattle. It’s where the couple have their home base because Wilson plays quarterback for the Seattle Seahawks football team.
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The Cascade high school program was set to debut this year before the pandemic forced founders Garth Reeves and Scott Canfield to delay opening.
In need of cash, they reached out to Wilson's foundation recently and landed the partnership. Canfield said the superstar couple’s generosity will be honored with the school’s name change to Why Not You Academy but that Wilson and Ciara won’t be involved in the school's day-to-day operations.
In an interview with The Associated Press, Wilson and Ciara said they jumped at the opportunity to help launch the school. It focuses on academics, personalized student plans and internships and mentorships for underserved Black and brown students. The couple said they hope this will be the first of many Why Not You Academy sites across the country.
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Benjamin Hovland, the chairman of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, said recent arson attacks on ballot drop boxes shouldn't have an impact on voters' confidence in the election process. © Amanda Edwards/Getty Images A woman wearing protective gloves posts her election ballot in an official ballot drop box on October 20, 2020 in Marina del Rey, California Boston Police on Monday announced they had made an arrest after a ballot drop box outside the Boston Public Library in Copley Square was set alight in the early hours of Sunday morning, damaging dozens of ballots.
“I’m really confident...about the team that we have here and how we’re building things out,” Ciara said. “We’re passionate about everything. We’re all in on this.”
The Why Not You Academy is expected to open in fall 2021, just as the deadline to authorize new charter schools is set to expire in the state.
Washington currently has 12 charter schools open with 3,639 students, according to records from the state education department.
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Four others are authorized but not operating — either shut down because of COVID or are still building their programs for future enrollment. Washington’s charter law allows for up to 40 publicly funded, privately run charter schools to set up by 2021.
Besides the difficulties the pandemic created for schools, the charter school environment in Washington state has been destabilized for years by a barrage of legal, financial and enrollment uncertainties.
While the total number of schools and students have steadily increased each year, nearly a third of charter programs with students have shut down since the state's first charter school opened in 2014.
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“We can’t speak for other schools but great progress does come with setbacks,” Canfield said. “Our focus is on what we can do and what we can control.”
Washington was among the last U.S. states to adopt a charter school law allowing privately run schools to operate on contracts, or charters, and receive taxpayer money.
The state's hard-fought and long-troubled path here to permitting charter schools included three failed ballot measures before a fourth try was narrowly approved in 2012. Then there were two major lawsuits challenging the law before the Supreme Court ruled in support of charter schools, settling the matter in 2018.
Charter schools are not subject to the same rules or standards governing traditional public schools, so those who embrace them promote them as hubs of innovation and alternatives for students struggling in typical school systems, particularly children in poor, urban areas. Studies on the schools' academic success are mixed.
UK judge accepts paper's claims that Johnny Depp is a 'wife beater'
UK judge accepts paper's claims that Johnny Depp is a 'wife beater'LONDON (Reuters) - Hollywood star Johnny Depp on Monday lost his libel battle with a British tabloid that labelled him a "wife beater", after a London High Court judge ruled that the paper's allegations were "substantially true".
Critics, particularly teacher unions, say charter schools lack accountability and transparency expected of public institutions and drain much-need taxpayer money away from the neighborhood public schools that educate the vast majority of all U.S. students.
While Democrats and Republicans have supported charter schools in the past, the issue of school choice has become immensely polarizing politically.
Democrats are now largely unified against President Donald Trump’s administration and Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos’ priorities on charters and private school vouchers.
DeVos has been villainized as a crusader bent on privatizing the U.S. education system. The wealthy Republican heiress has long slammed the public school status quo as the ultimate roadblock to equity for the nation's most vulnerable students.
Wilson, joining a long line of, said the couple's charter school financing is not a political statement.
He instead pointed to their foundation’s education philanthropy work that spans the globe.
Among the youth-focused programs Wilson and Ciara have supported are the Seattle-based Rainier Scholars program that helps low-income students of color prepare for college and the Rwanda Girls Initiative, which runs a science and technology-focused boarding school for girls in Africa.
“We’ve been so committed over the past four years to education,” Wilson said. “This isn’t anything political for us.”
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Crazy Rich Asians' Henry Golding and wife Liv Lo expecting first child .
The 33-year-old SAG Award nominee received congratulations from actresses Freida Pinto, Samara Weaving, Ali Wong, and Olivia Munn, as well as filmmakers Paul Feig and Jon M. Chu .The Malaysian-born Englishman and the Taiwanese presenter originally met on New Year's Day 2011 years before he ever found fame.And Liv hasn't slowed down as she was hard at work Thursday filming a mystery project for her fitness company, Fitsphere. © Provided by Daily Mail The pregnant 35-year-old gushed: 'Such immense joy this little one has brought us already.