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Public policy group says
too many charters are one
race and have experienced
FROM STAFF REPORT
A new report by a well-known public policy
agency urges the General Assembly to put the
brakes on the formation of new charter schools
until several issues can be examined further.
The N.G. Center for Public Policy Research
(NCCPPR) released a report this week that
examines the effectiveness of charter schools in
The state had 97 charter schools during the
2(X)I-2(X)2 school year. The schools are nonprof
are run by
free to pur
are similar to public schools. For instance, any
student is eligible to attend and tuition is not
Charter schools have become popular
throughout the country as parents seek schools
that can offer new. innovative educational tech
niques. In the year 2001. 38 states allowed char
ter schools, w ith a total of 2,317 charter schools
North Carolina's General Assembly passed
legislation in 1996 that cleared the way for the
formation of charter schools in the state. Legisla
tors allowed for only 100 charter schools. The
state is near its maximum. The NCCPPR report
comes as the State Board of Education is pushing
the General Assembly to raise the charter school
limit to 110. Other legislators want the limit to be
pushed up to as high as 135 charter schools.
See Charters on AS I
A new report says that too
many charter schools are one
race and are adding to the
problem of resegregation in
Photo hy Fctetia P McMillan. Ph.D
Michael Kimbrough, Betty Terry, Beverly Funches
Williams, Evelyn Funches and James Funches sat togeth
er at a family table during the reunion.
Photos by Kevin Walker
Clockwise from left: John Miller, Ben Smith, Ryan Lineberry and Davaun Hickman practice a
sword fight scene before Friday's performance at Mineral Springs Middle School.
acting ropes during
special arts camp
BY T. KEVIN WALKER
THE CHRONICLE ?
The Children's Theater of
Winston-Salem entered the
crowded summer camp arena last
year, offering artistically-inclined
young folks a crash course in act
ing and a chance to shine during a
The summer camp concept
proved so successful that the the
ater held another camp this sum
mer. The camp wrapped up Friday
with a unique performance featur
ing the work of Shakespeare.
"We were bombarded with
phone calls from folks wanting to
know what is there to do in the
summertime," Children's Theater
Executive Director Les Epstein
said, explaining how Ihe camp
came about. "It is a way to show
kids the discipline that goes into
developing roles, and it is a great
alternative to soccer camp."
Seventeen young people from
ages 4 to 14 and of all acting lev
els took part in the most recent
two-week camp, working for sev
eral hours a day to nail down the
production, a 30-minute stage
presentation featuring a smatter
ing of work by the famous bard.
The highlight of production was a
15-minUte version of the classic
"Romeo and Juliet."
The camp was spearheaded by
Si , Play - A10
The young actors show off the drama masks they created.
WFMY News 2's
Hughes marks 30
years on television
BY T KEVIN WALKER
Sandra Hughes doesn't con
sider herself a trailblazer.
Although she created paths
in her field where none existed
before. Hughes says when she
thinks of trailblazers, names
such as Rosa Parks and Martin
Luther King Jr. spring to mind.
"I don't think of myself as
such," Hughes said Monday.
There are many who dis
agree. Hughes has been a player
on the WFMY News 2 team for
three decades. Her face, smile
and inviting personality have
become familiar to most Pied
mont residents as Hughes has
secured her position as the
matriarch of Triad television
WFMY. a Greensboro-based
station, is in the middle of an
ongoing celebration in honor of
Hughes, a celebration that will
culminate Wednesday when the
station will air a special program
in honor of the popular anchor.
Hughes said the hoopla
Sir Hughes on A4
Photo courtesy of WFMN
Happy Hill Reunion
brings thousands home
BY FE1.ECIA P MC MILLAN. PH I)
Founders of the Happy Hill Reunion.
Benjamin Piggott and William "Rock" Bit
ting. were pleased with this year's turnout for
the annual affair. More than 2.(XX) residents,
former residents and friends of the Happy
Hill Garden community supported the ninth
annual Happy Hill Reunion.
Happy Hill is the oldest African-Ameri
can community in the city. The area has
many historic ties to nearby Old Salem, the
city's first settlement.
The gathering was held last weekend at
the William C. Sims Recreation Center, in
the heart of the historic community. This
event continues to attract larger and larger
crowds for various reasons.
During the opening ceremony on Satur
day. the founders held a balloon release in
honor of the ancestors from Happy Hill and
from Liberia, West Africa, the source of the
enslaved persons who lived across the creek
from Salem. James Y. Hunder Sr..
founder/former president of the Liberian
Organization of the Piedmont (LOP): Frank
J. Konah. vice president: and Jacob M. Craw
ford. LOP chairman of planning, participated
in the ritual. Hunder spoke in one of the
dialects df the ancestors to offer a special
"We are glad to be in your midst because
we are all one. On behalf of the Liberian
.Si Happy Hill "//A9
use of PVC
Plants that make the carcinogenic
component are located mainly in
one such area his been dubbed
cancer alley by environmentalists
BY COURTNEY GA1LLARD
Concerned consumers and local environmental
ists protested at the Kmart on Lewisville-Clemmons
Road last week, telling patrons that "Martha (Stew
art) Ain't No Environmental Steward." The protest
in Clemmons was just one of several happening at
Kmart stores around the country.
Protesters were referring to the toxic plastic
material PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride), otherwise
known as vinyl, which is used in the manufacturing
and packaging of many items in Stewart's Everyday
line, which is sold exclusively at Kmart. Items such
as Martha Stewart Everyday table covers, place
mats, shower curtains and beverage dispensers are
just a few
her line that
comes in the
ing of PVC.
to send to
wno is aireauy unuer lire Because 01 alleged insider
trading, to replace the vinyl with a safer material.
"Consumers are saying that they want compa
nies to be more environmentally sound. I think if
anything, it's a great message for them to express
that companies need to he environmentally respon
sible." said Meredith McLeod. a concerned con
sumer who joined in the protest.
The high chlorine content in PVC contaminates
the recycling of other plastics and PVC is the single
largest source of a cancer-causing chemical called
dioxin. When PVC is burned in waste incinerators,
it creates a toxic brew of pollution that can cause
serious health problems - immune system damage,
altered sexual development, diabetes and reproduc
tive problems - to anyone from vinyl fabricators to
residents who live near vinyl manufacturers. The
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) esti
mates that one in 1.000 Americans will develop can
cer due to dioxin exposure.
"PVC. or vinyl as it's called more readily, is dan
gerous from its production to its disposal, so the
people who live near the factories are in grave dan
ger. In fact, people are very sick who live near these
factories in Louisiana and Texas." said Lisa Finaldi.
U.S. toxics coordinator w ith Greenpeace in Raleigh.
Several low-income African-American commu
nities in East New Orleans. Baton Rouge and Lake
Charles. La., are learning firsthand just how danger
ous the manufacturing of PVC is. One community
in Louisiana has been dubbed "Cancer Alley"
because of the high rate of the disease in the area.
Residents in communities where PVC is manu
factured have charged that air. water and food sup
plies are being contaminated from the toxic chemi
cal releases and wastes from vinyl plants, many of
which are located along the Mississippi River.
In one case, it has been determined that a schrxrl
and neighborhood were built directly on top of an
old city dump in a portion of East New Orleans.
Set Stewart on A4
Environmentalists are hoping to
get Martha Stewart out of the
kitchen and to a bargaining
table to discuss her use of PVC
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