Author: Staff Report

School grants made to attack violence

Pennsylvania Senate Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi (R-9) said $219,259 in competitive grants have been awarded to schools in Chester and Delaware counties to help prevent and reduce violence. The grants, released under the state’s new Safe Schools Targeted Grant program, are intended to help schools: reduce unnecessary student disciplinary actions; promote an environment of greater productivity, safety and learning; provide professional development to staff using research-based violence prevention and classroom management programs; and enhance anti-violence efforts with parents, local governments, law enforcement and community organizations. “Reducing violence in schools is critical to establishing a good learning environment,” said Pileggi. The grant award recipients are: Avon Grove School District, $25,000; Chester Community Charter School, $25,000; Chester Upland School District, $23,600; Delaware County Intermediate Unit, $24,998; Great Valley School District, $25,000; Ridley School District, $23,661; Southeast Delco School District, $22,000; Upper Darby School District, $25,000; and William Penn School District, $25,000. Schools were eligible to receive up to $25,000 for programs and initiatives including: conflict resolution or dispute management; school-wide positive behavior support; school-based diversion programs; classroom management; research-based violence prevention programs that address risk factors to reduce incidents of problem behaviors among students; training for student assistance program team members; staff training in the use of positive behavior supports; and de-escalation techniques and appropriate responses to student behavior that may require immediate...

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Union makes significant trade

The Philadelphia Union filled a significant hole in their defense on Monday with a trade for the Chicago Fire’s center back Austin Berry. The Union shook up their defense in January, trading center back Jeff Parke to D.C. United in exchange for Ethan White while also swapping allocation spots. White wasn’t seen as an immediate replacement for Parke, however, and team manager John Hackworth repeatedly said the team was still looking for another defender to fill out the line. The 6-2 Berry, acquired for an undisclosed amount of allocation money, can be that replacement. The 25 year-old has appeared in 62 games for the Fire and was named MLS Rookie of the Year in 2012. “Austin is a talented central defender that will add quality to our back line,” Hackworth said. “He already has a lot of MLS experience and we think he is the right fit to help strengthen our central defense. We’re happy to have a player of his caliber and look forward to him joining the team.” Berry will join the team in Deltona, FL for preseason training. The Union’s season kicks off March 8th  on the road against the Portland...

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Dedicated to the written word

Nasty weather did not prevent avid readers from attending their Book Club meeting at Friendship Circle Senior Center last week. Led by former teacher Diane Tinucci of Glenolden, this month’s discussion was on Erik Larson’s novel, In the Garden of Beasts, a true story set in Nazi Germany. The group meets on the second Tuesday of every month at 10:30 A.M. at Friendship Circle, 1515 Lansdowne Ave. in Darby. The reading for March is Wish You Well by David...

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Influential health leader retires; successor named

One of America’s most influential leaders in the national health care industry has announced his retirement as president and chief executive officer of AmeriHealth Caritas after nearly 20 years with the company and four years at its helm. Michael A. Rashid will be succeeded by Paul A. Tufano, Independence Blue Cross (IBC) executive vice president and AmeriHealth Caritas board chairman. Tufano will now serve as chairman and CEO, effective March 31st. Rashid will serve as special advisor to IBC President and CEO Daniel J. Hilferty through year end. During his tenure, Rashid positioned the company as a national leader...

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Marriage equality effort launches nationwide

Thousands of people across the country will take to bended knee to pop the question this Valentine’s Day, but in a majority of states, it is still illegal for same-sex couples to tie the knot. To get the message out that marriage equality should be the law in the U.S. (and throughout the world), a new campaign is being launched to stamp out discrimination –through messaging on money. “We hope to start a grassroots effort that has supporters stamping the message of ‘Marriage Equality Now’ on dollar bills across the country,” said Joe Palan, president of EqualityStamp.com. “As more and more people get involved, those stamped bills will end up in the hands of politicians, judges, longtime couples seen under the law as nothing more than friends, or small town teens worried about coming out.” The average life-span of a dollar bill is between two and five years and it changes hands often over that time. So each person taking part and each single dollar stamped will reach thousands upon thousands of people across the U.S. The idea comes from a similar campaign with another goal. “There’s a nationwide effort to get money out of politics and overturn Citizens United,” Palan said. “It’s called StampStampede and is the brainchild of Ben Cohen, co-founder of Ben and Jerry’s.” An analysis done by an attorney on behalf of StampStampede concluded that...

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