The debate about the effectiveness of the SAT in the college admissions process rages on, most recently in a news story in Newsday that found that many Long Island universities are not requiring either the SAT or the ACT test because they believe other measures of student achievement are better predictors of college success.
That's unfortunate, because in my experience as a K-12 educator in districts with significant populations of high-needs students, I found that for many students the SAT did not close college doors but provided opportunities for those doors to open.
The most accurate controversy over the SAT began in 2021, when the University of California system rocked the academic world by announcing that after 60 years, it would no longer use the SAT as a tool in the admissions process. Lost in all the headlines about the SAT and the ACT, one fact remains: Many colleges and universities allow students to submit SAT/ACT scores, but do not require them.
The College Board continues to administer the SAT in fulfillment of its stated mission to expand college access by identifying students at less competitive high schools who merit consideration by our nation’s most prestigious institutions — an equalizer for students to demonstrate potential for rigorous academic pursuits.
As colleges and universities on Long Island — and elsewhere — move away from requiring the SAT, its future becomes murky. In response, momentous changes in the SAT lie on the horizon. In 2024, the test will go fully digital as a two-hour test that allows students to use calculators on all mathematics sections and contains shorter studying passages than the current ones, which test students’ attention spans as much as their studying skills.
The worst outcome would be for schools and students to abandon the SAT and ACT. Throughout five decades in education, I saw numerous instances where the SAT allowed students to attend — and demonstrate their worthiness for — our most prestigious colleges and universities, fulfilling the original mission of the assessment. These students experienced personal challenges that made it difficult for them to show their potential in classrooms, extracurricular activities, and other traditional measures of readiness. Like the students who needed to be home immediately after school to watch younger siblings and could not participate in sports, clubs, and other activities. How can students in such circumstances demonstrate their qualifications for admission to Ivy League and other high-level institutions and financial aid packages that enable them to attend these bastions of wealth and privilege?
Tests like the SAT and ACT provide an opportunity for such students to distinguish themselves. Do students gain admission solely based on a test score? Not in my experience. When they show promise on an SAT/ACT score, an admissions officer requests that they come for an interview and uses that to make the final determination on admission and financial support. If we stop administering these assessments, students like these will be the losers, as will the institutions that fail to diversify their student bodies.
Beyond that, if students stop taking these high-stakes assessments, what will happen when they wish to pursue postgraduate education and need to take the MCAT, GMAT, LSAT or GRE? We owe it to students to prepare them for life after high school and undergraduate school. The SAT and ACT continue to play an important role in that process.
This guest essay reflects the views of Michael Cohen, a retired superintendent of the Brentwood school district.
The MarketWatch News Department was not involved in the creation of this content.
Dec 13, 2022 (AB Digital via COMTEX) -- EOS Data Analytics uses its deep knowledge, expertise, and experience to provide agriculture and other sectors with valuable and accurate geospatial data analytics. The company will launch the EOS SAT satellite constellation to empower agribusiness participants worldwide and increase the industry's sustainability. These satellites will be the world's first constellation focused on the needs of agriculture launched by a company that already has its own software products that work based on satellite imagery analytics.
Seven optical satellites equipped with 13 agro-related bands will be put into low earth orbit to provide farmers and other industry stakeholders with valuable insights. In combination with information from agronomists, soil data, reliable weather forecasts, historical data on fields productivity, and accurate analysis of satellite imagery the end user will get comprehensive information about the state of agricultural land.
Seven Satellites For Productivity And Sustainability Improvement
According to, EOS Data Analytics these satellites will make a full-operation cycle of geospatial data analysis possible: from obtaining data from its own source to processing and transforming it into valuable insights. The project was developed in partnership with Dragonfly Aerospace and required thorough planning.
Farming land monitoring will become the constellation's primary task, enabling the EOS SAT to be a unique project among companies using remote sensing. The new satellite models will enable the company to Improve monitoring accuracy and raise the availability of reliable satellite data to the end user.
The founder of EOS Data Analytics, Max Polyakov, noted that the company aims to provide farmers and other agribusiness participants with comprehensive information that plays a vital role in further sustainable development and ensuring food security. It is crucial because food production requires sustainable methods in the face of climate change. This goal is only possible to achieve with reliable data and geospatial data analysis in agriculture.
EOS SAT Constellation Timeline
The project will unfold in different steps, each taking place at their own time:
Characteristics of EOS SAT Satellites
The satellites of this agricultural satellite constellation will move in a sun-synchronous orbit with an average power of 140 watts. Optical satellites with a design lifetime of 5-7 years will provide images in 1.4m panchromatic and 2.8m multispectral resolution.
The three days revisit time can help to Improve the awareness of changes in the fields. Revisit within 24 hours is also possible upon request. EOS SAT constellation equipped with 13 band channels and their unique settings will help cover the most critical needs of the agricultural industry.
Launching the satellite constellation will enable EOS Data Analytics to Improve the quality of data obtained from low Earth orbit and make them more accessible to farmers. Such updates will positively impact crop monitoring and classification, growth comparison, soil moisture measurement, weather forecast, and other data that EOSDA provides the agricultural industry.
New EOS Data Analytics opportunities include:
Satellites for Agribusiness Purposes
The benefits of satellite technology and near real-time geospatial data analysis for the industry include the ability for growers to make effective crop protection and resource management decisions based on accurate data. Thus, agriculture is being transformed into a more productive and sustainable industry.
Numerous options for practical applications of remote sensing technologies for agriculture include crop monitoring, forecasting, and natural disaster management. Furthermore, satellite technology enables the prediction of market trends and increases the transparency of supply chains.
The launch of the EOS SAT project and the launch of the first satellite of the future constellation into orbit will occur in December 2022. The project will enable EOSDA to provide farming business participants with field monitoring data.
Thanks to EOS SAT, the accuracy of the analytics data provided by the company for various niches in the agricultural industry will increase. This project will help to consume and allocate natural resources rationally and sustainably. It is also intended to reduce the negative impact of agricultural production on the environment. EOSDA will assist producers in making their products healthier and ensure global food security.
The mission of EOS Data Analytics is to harness the power of space technology and innovation for the benefit of humanity. The EOS SAT project will help make agriculture a more sustainable industry through reliable data from low Earth orbit. The constellation of satellites will enable the company to provide the agro-industry with valuable plant health, soil conditions, potential threats information, and other data that will help maintain food security and sustainability.
The MarketWatch News Department was not involved in the creation of this content.
China is now looking to launch its first planetary defense test mission a year earlier than planned and on a larger rocket.
Like NASA did on its accurate Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) mission, China wants to test changing the orbit of a potentially hazardous asteroid with an impactor spacecraft and also accurately measure how much its orbit is altered.
DART partnered with a successor mission from the European Space Agency called Hera, which is due to launch in 2024 and will study the impact site in detail. China, however wants to attempt both the impact and close observation in one shot. The country first announced plans for the mission in April and later revealed that the test would target a space rock known as 2020 PN1, a "potentially hazardous" asteroid roughly 130 feet (40 meters) wide. The mission was to launch on a Long March 3B rocket around 2026.
Related: 8 ways to stop an asteroid: Nuclear weapons, paint and Bruce Willis
Wu Weiren, chief designer of China's lunar exploration program, told CCTV on Nov. 24 that the new plan will see the mission launch in 2025 atop the larger, more powerful Long March 5 rocket.
"We will launch two probes," he said. "The first one is for surveying. Having studied it [the asteroid] thoroughly after a period of survey, the other one, an impactor, will follow our orders to collide with the asteroid and hopefully divert it three or five centimeters [one or two inches] away from its course."
The spacecraft will launch together, but after separating from the rocket they will enter different trajectories to 2020 PN1. The surveyor will rendezvous with the asteroid first, allowing it to make observations both before and after the planned impact.
While small, the planned alteration in the orbit would be enough to significantly alter the asteroid's path over time.
"A deviation of three or five centimeters would change the trajectory by over 1,000 kilometers [620 miles] after around three months," Wu said. "The longer the time, the bigger the change of the trajectory."
Wu underlined the importance of being able to eliminate potential threats of collisions with Earth.
Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Facebook.
Grace Millane's mother Gillian has sat down with Newshub to talk about her mission to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in honour of her daughter and late husband David.
The murder of her daughter Grace sparked international news after the British tourist disappeared in December 2018 while in Auckland on her OE.
Her body was found in bush in the Waitākere Ranges a week after she was last seen at a central Auckland hotel. A 27-year-old man - who had been seen on CCTV footage entering an Auckland hotel with Millane - was found guilty in November 2019 and sentenced to life in prison with a minimum non-parole period of 17 years.
But the Millane family's struggles didn't end there with Grace's father David dying two years later of cancer.
Gillian told Newshub the decision to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in honour of her daughter and her husband is a deeply personal journey, saying it helps her get out of bed every day.
Watch Newshub's extended interview with Gillian above.
We are marking 10 years since the tragic Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre and taking a look at what has changed -- and what hasn't -- in the past decade.
Six educators and 20 students were killed. They were only 6 or 7 years old at the time.
Their families have been left with grief and pain -- but also a purpose to fight on their children's behalf to help prevent future mass shootings.
In this Eyewitness News special, we will talk to parents and lawmakers about their efforts to tighten gun laws, how schools across the country have changed and how Americans' views on guns are different now.
Watch the special here or wherever you stream ABC7 New York on Wednesday at 10 a.m., 1 p.m. and 8 p.m.
Jordan Gomes was in gym class when the shooting happened. She is in college now and told Kemberly Richardson all about the day that forever changed her life.
The Sandy Hook Promise was founded by the families of those killed and its mission is to prevent gun violence.
Josh Einiger has more on the nonprofit that is saving lives.
Ten years later, they've come so far and accomplished so much, yet parents Mark Barden and Nicole Hockley acknowledge they still have far to go and so much to do.
Joe Torres sat down with the pair who have vowed not to be deterred and pledged to turn their grief into activism.
Sen. Chris Murphy made an impassioned plea on the floor of the Senate immediately after the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas.
Murphy was a congressman 10 years ago during the Sandy Hook shooting and is now a senator. He has made fighting gun violence his life's work.
He spoke to Bill Ritter about the state of gun control in America.
The children who were killed 10 years ago would have been on the verge of starting adulthood today.
There were dozens of kids who survived and as they go through high school now, the memories of what happened are still vivid a decade later.
ABC News' Martha Raddatz sat down with four survivors who looked back while looking ahead to the future.
* Get Eyewitness News Delivered
* Follow us on YouTube
* More local news
* Send us a news tip
* Download the abc7NY app for breaking news alerts
HARLINGEN, Texas — Senior Enlisted Advisor Tony L. Whitehead, the senior enlisted advisor for the chief, National Guard Bureau, visited Texas National Guardsmen at the Texas-Mexico border over the Thanksgiving holiday.
Whitehead serves as the chief’s principal military adviser on all enlisted matters affecting training, utilization, the health of the force and enlisted professional development. As the highest enlisted level of National Guard leadership, he provides direction for the enlisted force and represents their interests.
“The purpose of the visit was to check on our soldiers and airmen working on Operation Lone Star,” Whitehead said. “They’re Guardsmen, and I wanted to make sure that we had an opportunity to speak to them about their thoughts and ideas about the mission, how they were doing, how they felt about how the mission was going and any ideas that I needed to take back to the chief of the National Guard Bureau.”
Operation Lone Star is a state-led mission to respond to increased illegal immigration on the Texas-Mexico border. In May 2021, Texas issued a disaster declaration covering 48 counties, primarily along or near the border. Approximately 6,000 service members are currently deployed to support Operation Lone Star.
During his visit Nov. 22-24, SEA Whitehead met with different units and components to get a full picture of the various mission sets of the state active-duty members. That included riding on a Texas State Guard center console boat used by Task Force East, known as the ‘river unit,’ for the border mission.
“Task Force East is responsible for four zones in the McAllen sector of the border. Our unit is specifically responsible for the river,” said Texas Army National Guard Capt. Mike Jones, commander of the TF East team. “Today, we were showcasing some of the highlights of both the Mexico and U.S. side, such as landmarks, key areas the cartel uses and Border Patrol use, you know, in the whole cat and mouse game of border security.”
Soldiers assigned to the river unit received recognition coins from Whitehead for their work on the border and talked about their experiences on the mission with him.
“The Southwest border mission is a unique mission to the United States,” Whitehead said. “For our soldiers and airmen doing the mission, this has been talked about a lot, and I think sometimes we forget that we’ve got people down there 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”
As part of his priority to seek opportunities for innovation and advancement within the ranks, Whitehead asked service members to provide feedback to take back to the Pentagon.
“The visit was so great for my soldiers,” Jones said. “These guys (and gals) are all highly motivated to begin with, but having leadership from NGB come down and see what they do on a day-to-day basis is a big deal.”
Unit leaders also briefed Whitehead on the morale of the Texas Guardsmen, noting an 86% volunteer rate for troops wishing to stay on the mission. These extension requests, leaders said, can be attributed to the pay incentives, time off to spend with family and the unique border mission. The Guard members can work in different units alongside partners like the Border Patrol and Department of Public Safety.
Whitehead said he was impressed with the service members’ work and commitment to the greater good.
“One of the best things I liked about what I heard was that they have been here long enough to see the difference they have made in what they’ve been doing,” he said. “So, despite some of the things they’ve heard regarding the negative social media or negative press, they know that there’s been a positive difference in what they have been doing since they’ve been here.”
Asked why he visited during Thanksgiving, Whitehead said he wanted to ensure the soldiers and airmen know military leaders in Washington are mindful of their 24/7 commitment.
“When the holidays come around, I don’t know if people have the impression that things are halted because of it or that they are just comforted that we have military members down there on the Texas-Mexico border,“ he said. “Some of our Guardsmen have families that they’re separated from, that’s not just those deployed overseas but those deployed right here in the U.S.
“So, it’s important for the chief of the National Guard Bureau, myself, and the rest of the leadership team to go down and tell them thank you for what they’re doing. We appreciate what they’re doing, and we must let them know they’re standing in a gap that’s extremely important to our nation’s security.”
SANDY HOOK, Conn. (WTNH) – Ten years ago, the unthinkable happened. A small Connecticut town devastated on December 14, 2012.
Twenty students, six educators. Twenty-six families shattered.
We are remembering the victims of the Sandy Hook Massacre and highlighting what their families have done for their communities in the wake of their deaths.
“Jessica was our beautiful little girl who brought so much happiness to our lives. She was an independent, smart, and creative little girl who was always eager to learn new things. She spent hours “researching” Orca whales and just wanted to be “friends with an Orca.” She also spent her time watching movies about horses, and she had fallen in love with the idea of becoming a cowgirl. She took horseback riding lessons every week, and she loved going on trail rides through the woods.
Jessica made us laugh until we cried with her one-liners and funny responses. She as a natural leader, and we called her our little CEO. She was always planning, asking questions, and figuring out the details. Jess adored her little brothers and loved being with them. Weeks before she died, her horseback riding instructor asked Jess who her best friend was and she replied, “My brother, Travis.”
In the wake of Jessica’s death, her family created the Jessica Rekos Foundation. While the foundation is closing, her family asks that anyone who would like to make a donation, donate here.
“Olivia’s zest for life began early. With help from her adoring parents, she quickly developed an affinity for all things fun. On any given afternoon, one could just as easily find Olivia twirling in a pink tutu in dance class, developing her swing on the tennis court, kicking the winning soccer goal, drawing, painting and gluing things in art class, or honing her inner songstress in her community musical theater class. The budding swimmer also loved to join her dad or grandpa on their boats, so she could explore the world from the water.
As Olivia continued to grow, she developed a love and affinity for math and reading, arts and crafts, and her parish. Participating in her church’s CCD program and leading the family’s Grace each evening were sources of great pride for Olivia, as was being a big sister. Ever patient, Olivia took joy in helping her three-year-old brother Brayden explore the world she’d grown to love. This smart, bubbly NY Yankee fan and Daisy Girl Scout would instantly light up a room with her humor, charm, and wit. She was a sweet and appreciative six-year-old with a lot to live for. Her physical loss will deeply be felt every day by those who loved her most, but her sparkly spirit will live on forever.”
In honor of Olivia, her family asks that donations be made to the Newtown Park and Bark.
“Avielle Rose Richman was born in San Diego, California on October 17th, 2006 into a family of story tellers. With a spitfire personality, and a love of laughter, Avielle was rarely without a giant grin, and was often barefoot. Like her parents, she loved stories and demanded them as she was falling asleep, taking a bath, riding in the car, and on every walk she took. She already understood that her life — her growing up — was going to be a series of stories.”
The Avielle Initiative was created in her honor. To learn more, click here.
“Jesse McCord Lewis was a remarkable child, full of light and love that radiated in his presence. He brought joy to the world with his infectious and ever ready smile and was wise beyond his years. Jesse used his last few minutes on earth yelling to his friends to run, saving many lives. His bravery has inspired many all over the world. His actions were consistent with the way he lived his life; passionately embracing everything, a perfect combination of courage and faith, like a little soldier, his favorite toy. The true love his family shared was abundant and all encompassing.
If you met Jesse once, he would leave an indelible mark on your heart. The picture that remains etched in our souls is one of him in his boots, no socks, ripped jeans and a t-shirt, an army helmet strapped to his head, a smudge of dirt on his cheek, tromping through the pasture on his way from one adventure to another.
Jesse Lewis Choose Love Movement™ is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization started by Jesse’s mom, Scarlett Lewis, with a mission to create safer and more loving communities through no cost Character Social Emotional Development programs (CSED) that are suited for all stages of life. Choose Love Movement offers programs tailored for any age from toddlers through adulthood. At the core of it all is a simple formula (COURAGE + GRATITUDE + FORGIVENESS + COMPASSION-IN-ACTION = Choosing Love) that anyone can learn and practice to nourish and strengthen the body, mind, and emotions to cultivate happy, healthy, meaningful lives and to thoughtfully respond to all we meet and Improve the world around us.
The Choose Love programs have been accessed in all 50 states and in more than 120 countries, reaching 3 million children.”
To learn more about the Choose Love Movement, click here.
“Grace was beautiful, kind and loving. She was full of life, imagination and sparkle. She loved her family, and her big brother Jack was her best friend. They were inseparable, and she took great pride in keeping up with him as they shared adventures big and small.
Grace was an artist. She saw beauty in everything and was fortunate to have found her passion early in life. Grace dreamed of living on Martha’s Vineyard and painting. She took art classes since the age of three and was truly gifted. The Grace McDonnell Art Fund continues to honor her life and dreams by supporting young artists and youth art programs through scholarships and grants.”
To donate to the Grace McDonnell Art Fund, click here.
“Noah was energy in motion. His zest for life was contagious. He was endlessly inquisitive, always wanting to know the why and how of things. He loved intricate, imaginative play with his Legos and superhero figurines. He loved playgrounds and the outdoors. Most of all, he loved his family and shared an unbreakable and unbroken bond with his twin sister, Arielle. He loved a good joke and was an enthusiastic story teller. We miss the music of his full-bellied laughter, the warmth of his hugs and the twinkle in his beautiful eyes with an indescribable, timeless sorrow.”
In honor of Noah, his father Lenny, started the HONR Network, which focuses on protecting people from online abuse.
“Ana Grace was widely known for her enthusiastic love of God, people, music, food and fun. She instituted the house rule of “seconds”. Her favorite seconds included second breakfast, second dessert and second hugs… And she could out-groove just about anyone. A budding little musician, Ana wanted to be a teacher, dancer or pop star when she grew up.
Sweet Caramel Princess, your family misses you desperately despite the comfort that comes from knowing you are wrapped safely in the arms of Jesus. We grieve your loss every minute of every day, along with the legion of friends and family in the US, Canada and Puerto Rico whose lives you have touched. We will fill our hearts with praise until reunited with you again.
Daddy, Mami and Isaiah”
The Ana Grace Project was born in response to Ana’s death. It’s dedicated to promoting love, community and connection for every child and family through three lead initiatives: partner schools, professional development, and music & arts.
“As Emilie’s parents, we are striving to honor our daughter by continuing to support the things that she loved. Emilie was an exceptional artist, and we enjoyed watching her as she expressed her creativity, love, excitement and her true self through art. We want to celebrate Emilie’s passion by supporting the arts with funding for programs in the community and schools.”
In honor of Emilie, the Emilie Parker Art Connection was started.
“To love Charlotte is a blessing. She was unique and left a lasting impression on all. Charlotte was a true free spirit and independent thinker. She made us laugh daily with her crazy antics and cleverness. She was in a perpetual state of movement; running, jumping, skipping, and dancing. Her curiosity often led to mischief and mishaps that still have us in stitches today. Charlotte’s energy and enthusiasm for almost everything was infectious. We hear loving stories from friends and family and the words they use are smart, funny, curious, messy, in-intimidated, and adventurous to describe her. We like to use the word BOLD, and it is this trait that we emulate as we honor Charlotte.
Charlotte had many loves. She loved having her hair tied in “piggies” with ribbons, pink frilly dresses, animals – big and small, her large collection of stuffed dogs, and eating shrimp and Big Y fried chicken. At home, she loved playing and caring for the family pets, “helping” her mom garden by picking flowers before their time, being tickled by her daddy, and trying to imitate and annoy her big brother. Charlotte joyfully loved her family, and our love for Charlotte is eternal.
We strive to honor Charlotte, her beautiful life, and her dreams by establishing and supporting programs and scholarships around the things she loved most.
Her joy will live in our hearts forever.”
In her memory, the Charlotte Bacon Foundation was started and helps support programs for animals.
“Six-year-old Catherine was kind. A lover of all animals, she always made it a point to show them extraordinary compassion. Whether she was gently cradling an insect in her palm, or squeezing a furry friend in a full-bodied hug, Catherine wanted them to know that they could trust her and that she would keep them safe from harm. She said that when she grew up, she was going to take care of the animals, even creating her own business cards for “Catherine’s Animal Shelter,” with the self-appointed title of “Care Taker.”
To honor Catherine’s memory and continue her crusade of compassion, the Catherine Violet Hubbard Animal Sanctuary has been created in Newtown, CT – a place of peace and inspiration where all creatures will know they are safe and cared for people who are kind, just as Catherine would have wanted.”
Following her death, the Catherine Violet Hubbard Animal Sanctuary was born and honors the bond between animals, humans and the environment.
“Born in Maryland, Joey was the youngest of three girls in our family. She enjoyed many things in this life, but her favorite was being with her older sisters and playing games with them. She liked to snuggle on the couch and watch movies with us. Her favorites were The Chipmunks, Lemonade Mouth, and all of the Barbie movies. She loved to swim and went to the pool each weekend and throughout the summer. She liked art and playing outside on her playset – and all of our neighbors’. Her favorite books were the Fancy Nancy stories, and she never tired of having them read to her each night at bedtime.
Joey was loved by her family, friends, and teachers. She had a way with people, a way without words. She spoke with her eyes, her gentle hugs, her sweet spirit, and her little hands. She was a happy, affectionate, little girl who overcame many challenges in life. She laughed loudly and gave love freely and genuinely. Her smile lit up a room and captured everyone around her. Joey radiated God’s love and goodness and during our time with her she taught us how to be better people.
We will love her forever and always keep her in our hearts.”
To honor Josephine, you are asked to donate to Safe and Sound Schools or the Doug Flutie Jr. Foundation for Autism.
For Daniel, kindness knew no boundaries. Daniel was a child who would hold the door open for strangers, scoop up his tiny ant friends to reunite them with their families, and befriend the classmate who always sat alone. Through his constant show of empathy towards all living things and his effortless joy for life, Daniel taught us so much in his short stay with us. Wherever Daniel was, he served as an inspiration to others – the stories are endless.
Daniel’s father, Mark, is one of the founders of Sandy Hook Promise. Click here to learn more.
“James was six. He was all boy. He wrestled his Dad on the floor, jumped off tall objects, cuddled with his Mom and grew faster than we could believe. ‘J’ loved to be a part of whatever his sister was doing; he learned so much from her and they had an amazing relationship. He loved school, his friends and being outside. James was an avid swimmer and had a hurry interest in Math. He had boundless energy, love, happiness and curiosity. James is greatly missed by everyone whose life he touched. We were blessed to have him in our lives.
James R. Mattioli Memorial Fund C/O Newtown Savings Bank; 39 Main Street Newtown, CT 06470
To honor the memory of our son, we will support programs which brought him joy and enriched his life.”
The James Mattiolo 5K was started in his honor. To learn more, click here.
The Caroline Previdi Foundation was created in memory of Caroline. The foundation supports children who lack the financial resources to be involved in extracurricular activities. To learn more about the foundation, click here.
“Allison was a kind-hearted little girl who had a lot of love to give, and she formed special bonds with most people who spent any amount of time with her. She loved her family and teachers especially, but would often surprise us with random acts of kindness – once even offering her Goldfish crackers to a complete stranger on a cross-country flight.
Allison loved drawing and wanted to be an artist, often turning parts of our house into an “art studio” with rows of pictures taped to the walls. She often drew pictures for her teachers, her school bus driver, school friends, relatives and anyone else she adored. We found a final picture that Allie had drawn for her first grade teacher, Miss Soto, complete with “I love you, Love Allie”.”
“We remember his smile. His laugh. His love of bouncing on trampolines and eating chocolate. His beautiful eyes and mischievous grin. His deep empathy in reacting to the feelings of others. His favorite books. The giant purple dots he made almost every day at school. His sensitivity to loud noises and his love of routine. His computer games and his most loved movies. The way he would lie in the warm sand at the beach, or take joy in finding the moon in the sky. How he called lightning “beautiful”, even while he was scared by the thunder. How he would ride a rollercoaster time after time and still not want to get off. The way other children were drawn to him, and how he wanted to play with them so much, even though he didn’t always know how. The way he loved to cuddle, have his back stroked, be tickled, or use other people as pillows when he snuggled against them.”
Dylan’s mother, Nicole, is a founding member of the Sandy Hook Promise. Click here to learn more.
“To our beautiful, joyful daughter, a petite princess with a big personality: We remember how life for you was a dance and a race. You loved to run ahead to the next big adventure. Always running…never walking but sometimes dancing, skipping and hopping to whatever you were going to do next. A music lover you loved to sing along with the radio and play the piano. Everything you did, you did with enthusiasm and determination, riding your bike without training wheels the day they were taken off, jumping waves at the beach, swimming at the pool. Once you set your mind to do something it was as good as done. So energetic, you ran, played and strived at 100% from the time you awoke until you fell asleep exhausted at night, only resting quietly to read books about fairies, princesses and Pinkalicious. You were an amazing little girl.”
“Chase was an amazing son, brother, and grandson whose heart was only filled with love for all the people he touched. He was a fun-loving, energetic boy who had a true love of life. He completed his first triathlon at the age of six and ran in many community road races. Chase had a deep love for the game of baseball and enjoyed practicing with his father and teammates. Joining the Cub Scouts was just one of his many interests. He could often be found in the yard playing ball, riding his bike or quad. Chase’s love will continue to live on and touch many more lives through the work of our foundation in his memory.”
In his honor, the CMAK Foundation was created, which holds the Race 4 Chase annually. The organization focuses on family and children-focused initiatives and programs.
“Jack was a happy, inquisitive and energetic boy. He loved being with his friends, going to school, playing sports and most of all he loved being with his big brother. He was a son, brother, grandson, nephew, cousin and friend. He was the heart of our family.
We miss his huge smile, his giggles, and the excitement he brought to our life each and every day. We miss the mischievous grin on his face when he was caught eating snacks before dinner and the laughter in his voice while having a football pass in the driveway. We miss him more than words can say.
Jack lived a full and joyful life and his light shines bright in the hearts of those who knew and loved him.
We are celebrating Jack’s life by providing support to organizations that assist children and families. We have made a donation in Jack’s honor to “Every Kid Sports”, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing underprivileged children with the resources they need to play team sports.”
To learn more about Every Kid Sports, click here.
“Ben woke up with a smile on his face and carried it everywhere he went. The constant sparkle in his eye showed his delight with all the world and his slightly mischievous plans for it. And he was figuring it all out. We loved his inquisitive mind and his desire to have every question answered, with the utmost urgency. We loved his thirst for experience and that little bit of shyness that came out from time to time. We still hear the echo of his insistent voice, clamoring for the attention he knew he deserved and the world would give him. We followed every direction he gave as we scratched his back at bedtime, played every Beatles song he requested, and knew that if we skipped a page in that night’s book we would certainly hear about it. His gap-toothed grin and his concern that he hadn’t yet lost a tooth. Benny, we think about you every second of every minute of every hour of every day and now you are our lighthouse. Forever.”
Ben’s Lighthouse was started in his honor due to his love of lighthouses. The organization’s mission is to help kids and teens develop empathy, self-awareness and social connection.
“Vicki was the loving daughter of Donna and Carlos Soto, who at 27 years of age was living her dream teaching first grade at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Vicki lived at home with her sisters Jillian, Carlee and her brother Carlos Mathew along with her favorite dog Roxie. Her family including her cousins were as important to her as her career as a teacher.
Her zest for life was evident to all who knew her, she was serious if she needed to be and silly more often than people would expect. She was beautiful with sparkling blue eyes. Vicki was the perfect daughter, loyal and loving cousin and friend as well as, the best person you would ever meet. Vicki’s mantra was to live each day as it was your last and to always: Live, Laugh, Love
Our family has set up a foundation to provide scholarships to students going into the field of education. We also collect and donate new books to schools in need.”
The Vicki Soto Memorial Fund was started in her honor. To learn more, click here.
“Lauren was a sensitive and focused young woman. As a child she played school and always kept her desire to become a professional educator as she grew. She recently worked three jobs to cover her expenses, including the most accurate at SHES as a building substitute. She was so happy to finally get a position in educating young children. Memories of her love of family, friends, customers at Starbucks and her cat Layla will always keep her alive. Two scholarships have been set up in her name to help defray expenses for students desiring to become elementary school teachers. The first is The Lauren Rousseau Memorial Scholarship / Danbury High School Scholarship Fund / 43 Clapboard Ridge Rd / Danbury, CT 06811 and the Lauren Rousseau Memorial Scholarship / University of Bridgeport Graduate School of Education / 126 Park Ave / Bridgeport, CT 06604. Contributions to these causes would make Lauren extremely proud.”
“Dawn was strong, confident, inspiring and compassionate. She was always willing to fight for what she believed in and to help in any way she could. She was a dedicated educator who inspired her students to reach their fullest potential by instilling in them the importance of life-long learning. Dawn spent many summers sailing Long Island Sound with her husband George. They also enjoyed kayaking, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing, or just talking in front of the fire with a glass of wine (and, of course, a box of chocolate). She loved her dog, a black standard poodle named Bella. She carried Bella on her hip like a baby and shared her own meals with Bella (often with her own fork).
Dawn had two daughters at a young age and raised them mostly by herself, but she never wavered in her ambition. She balanced her own education with her responsibilities as a mother. She never missed her daughters’ softball games–she may have been in the bleachers doing homework, but she was always there. Her career advanced and her schedule grew hectic, but she never failed to be there for her daughters. They would often call during her workday and get her voicemail, but always got a text right back that said, “I’m in a meeting. Are you OK?”
Dawn also loved spending time with her grandchildren. She took them on sailing expeditions, trips to the Adirondacks and visits to museums and science centers. Ever the educator, she bought books as their gifts–always inscribed with a special note of how proud she was of them. She went to their sporting events and advocated for them at their schools. She often joked that she was their “mean grandma” because she wasn’t afraid to tell them ‘no.’ She could say this in good spirit because she knew that she was also their favorite grandma.
Dawn died as she lived: always in control, handling whatever came her way. There is nothing that could have stopped her from trying to protect the people she loved.”
In her honor, the Dawn Lafferty Hochsprung Memorial Foundation was created. Click here to learn more.
“Mary’s Fund was established in 2013 following the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Named after Mary Sherlach, the school psychologist at Sandy Hook, Mary was one of the first educators killed that morning. Established by her family and friends, Mary’s Fund is dedicated to continuing her work of providing mental health services to children and teens.
The mission of Mary’s Fund is to provide access to mental health services for children and teens, throughout Fairfield County, Connecticut, who might otherwise find such services un-accessible. The goal of Mary’s Fund is to continue Mary’s work, in perpetuity, providing the highest quality of care that Mary sought to deliver each day at Sandy Hook.”
Mary’s Fund was created in her honor and supports the mental health of vulnerable youth. Click here to learn more.
“Rachel Marie D’Avino had an unrelenting determination and a clear focus on helping adults and children with Autism. She attended University of Hartford, Post University and University of St. Joseph. On 12/12/12 she had just completed her final requirements to become a Board Certified Behavioral Analyst.
On that night Rachel wrote “It is my dream that you know my name as a leader in Behavioral Analysis for children and adults with Autism; however I will be thrilled if I make a few people have an easier more enjoyable life”. Friends and family members are carrying on “Rachel’s dream”. Team Rachel and “Rachel’s Dream” Team are walking and collecting for Autism Speaks.
At a Celebration of Rachel’s Life at the University of Hartford, Russ Ken, Director of New England Autism Speaks, compared Rachel to “The Giving Tree” a book by Shell Silverstein. He also said that their mission statement could be summed up in three words, “Be Like Rachel”. Rachel’s other passions in life were karate, photography, cooking and baking. She was working with her Nona to create recipes for an Italian family cookbook. Over the years Rachel had quite a menagerie of animals. She was drawn to dogs, bunnies, birds– anything with fur, scales, or feathers.
Rachel was a daughter to Mary (Carmody) D’Avino of Bethlehem and Ralph D’Avino of Waterbury. Rachel was an adoring big sister to Sarah and Hannah. She lived at home with her mom, sisters, and stepdad, Peter Paradis. Rachel’s best friend and soon-to be-fiance Tony Cerritelli were to be engaged on Christmas Eve. He had just asked her parents’ permission to marry her. We all miss her so much and will continue to keep her memory alive.”
To honor Rachel, her family asks for donations to the Autism Speaks walk.
The family of Anne Marie Murphy has asked for their privacy.
The quotes under the victims’ names have been provided by My Sandy Hook Family.
In 1974, an act consolidating Missouri’s departments moved the Missouri National Guard from being its own agency to one within the Department of Public Safety.
Now, almost 50 years later, the Missouri National Guard will once again be its own Cabinet-level department of state government. The organizational change is to take effect this month. It will increase the number of state departments to 16.
The reorganization is due to a constitutional amendment that voters passed in the November election. Around 60% of voters approved of the amendment that established the department.
Rep. Bill Hardwick, R-Waynesville, was one of the lawmakers who worked on the resolution that brought the question to voters. He said this was something the Guard has wanted to accomplish for years.
“We sort of became more integrated with the active component with overseas forces. It seemed like something that made a whole lot more sense,” Hardwick said.
He said there were always lines of communication between the adjutant general of the Missouri National Guard and the governor, but this change further streamlines the process.
According to the language in the amendment, the guard is required to “uphold the Constitution of the United States, uphold the Constitution of Missouri, protect the constitutional rights and civil liberties of Missourians and provide other defense and security mechanisms as may be required.”
The resolution ended up sailing through the legislature, passing with no opposition in the Missouri Senate and only two “no” votes in the House. The language, in particular the portion on the protection of constitutional rights, is the reason Rep. Peter Merideth, D-St. Louis, was one of the "no" votes.
“It was hard for me to come out against the Guard on this knowing that a lot of the Guard members and leadership supported it,” Merideth said. “But I really did struggle with finding a good explanation of why it would make any positive difference for them. I still question that, honestly.”
Merideth is concerned that the language of the amendment could create situations in which the state government is at odds on an issue and the National Guard is used to push back against the federal government.
He cited the passage of the state’s Second Amendment Preservation Act, which prohibits the enforcement of federal gun regulations as an example of such a conflict.
“I realize that sounds pretty alarmist, and hyperbolic, but in the current political climate, it also doesn't seem that unrealistic after a bill like SAPA was passed,” Merideth said.
When asked about the transition from the Department of Public Safety to its own department, Mike O’Connell, communications director for the safety department, said the Guard’s mission will remain the same. A spokesman for the Guard declined to comment.
The language within the constitutional change is different from the state mission listed on the Missouri National Guard’s website, which is to “provide trained and disciplined forces for domestic emergencies or as otherwise required by state law under the authority of the governor.”
The National Guard has been activated to respond to emergencies like floods and winter storms as well as the COVID-19 pandemic.
In addition to its state mission, the guard’s federal mission is to “maintain properly trained and equipped units for prompt mobilization for war, national emergency, or as otherwise directed by the president.”
Hardwick says he does not envision a scenario where the Guard is pulled in two different directions.
“I think that guards are used to vacillating between the authorities they are operating under whether you're working for the president or the governor, and then being bound by the laws that are pertinent there,” Hardwick said.
A unique ring that a prime suspect behind the murder of a Greek national wore on the day of the incident has placed him at the scene.
The 33-year-old suspect wore the same ring when he was arrested at the weekend in a police operation.
He has been linked to the shooting of Alex Marcopaulo, at the Menellik /Ngong road junction on October 15.
He and his accomplice took away a rucksack that the deceased was carrying.
Then, the suspect wore a maroon polo t-shirt and had the ring on his left middle finger.
The t-shirt is also among the exhibits recovered in the police operation, police said.
CCTV footage showed the suspect shooting at the deceased and walking casually onto a motorbike before they drove off.
When he was arrested, he had the same ring on his left middle finger. It is now part of the items under scrutiny.
Police want to know where he bought it and how much amid suspicion it is stolen property.
Detectives handling the case said the suspect is believed to be the head of a gang behind the daylight armed robberies reported in Kilimani and its environs.
He was arrested on December 10 at Makongeni in Nairobi’s east lands suburbs almost 15 kilometres away from the scene of the murder.
His arrest followed a 48-hour well-calculated operation conducted by the Kilimani-based sleuths, who used bait to trap the serial killer who has previously served six years behind bars for a similar offence.
Detectives posed as a woman he had seduced online and agreed to a meeting before arresting him at a joint.
He had been on the run for two months during which he “met” a woman on social media and started to engage her for a meeting.
It was until Saturday that they agreed to meet at a bar when he was busted.
Detectives pounced on him as he sat waiting to meet his new catch to watch football before deciding the way forward, officials said.
Police had also used informers and technology to trail his movements.
The suspect who was released recently from prison took detectives to his house where crucial exhibits related to the robbery incidents were recovered and documented.
The exhibits include the t-shirt, shoes and trousers he wore on the day of the murder.
In the October incident, the jailbird and two accomplices on a numberless motorbike accosted Marcopaulo and shot him in a confrontation.
One of them then whipped out a pistol and shot Marcopaulo once on the right side of the chest, before taking off on a motorbike.
Efforts by doctors to save the victim’s life were fruitless as he later succumbed to the gunshot injury.
In a separate incident on September 29, according to police, the armed thugs had accosted four Dutch tourists outside Silver Harbour apartment along Kindaruma road.
They robbed them of their mobile phones, cash and jewellery before escaping towards Ngong road on a motorbike, whose plate numbers were concealed.
As they made their escape, the thugs fired two shots in the air to scare off members of the public who had responded to the distress call by the tourists.
The Dutch tourists were waiting to board a tour van to Nairobi National Park when the thugs struck in the 8 am incident.
Since then, detectives have been burning the midnight candle to unmask the identity of the gang and bring all of them to book.
Earlier, the Kilimani-based detectives had arrested one of the suspect's accomplices whose case is pending before the Chief Magistrate’s court in Kibera.
An operation to arrest the remaining suspects is currently ongoing, as the detectives follow crucial leads on their whereabouts.
The suspects were expected in court Tuesday where police plan to ask for more days under miscellaneous application to investigate more incidents.
Nairobi police boss Adamson Bungei said they are looking for more suspects behind incidents in the area.
“We have crucial leads and we hope to get them soon,” he said.
“Ab ki baar, kisan sarkar” (this time, it will be a farmers’ government), said Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao on Friday while formally renaming his Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) into Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS).
KCR, as the chief minister is popularly called, announced his mission to play a larger role in the national politics during a meeting at Telangana Bhavan in Hyderabad.
The CM said that transformation of TRS — formed 21 years ago with an objective of achieving separate statehood for Telangana — into BRS was a historic necessity.
The CM said that he will make all efforts to bring about a qualitative change in the national politics. “Ab ki baar, kisan sarkar will be the main agenda of the BRS in national politics”, he said, adding, that “the party will focus on uplifting the farming community of the country”, besides the welfare of the downtrodden and working class.
The BRS president announced that the new party will contest the ensuing assembly elections in neighbouring Karnataka in alliance with the Janata Dal (Secular). “We will extend full support to the JD (S) and strive to make its leader H D Kumaraswamy as chief minister. We will share the schemes being implemented in Telangana with the people during the Karnataka elections and win their confidence,” he said.
KCR said the national head office of the BRS will be inaugurated in Delhi on December 14 and from there, the party will commence its national political action plan. “In the next couple of months, we will intensify our party’s national activities,” he said.
The BRS president called for revamping several policies in the country by introducing new agriculture policy, new water policy, new power policy, economic policy,environmental policy, weaker sections’ upliftment policy and women empowerment policy – for the optimum utilisation of natural and human resources.“We are also holding discussions with former judges, prominent economists, sociologists and other intellectuals regarding formation of such policies,” he said.
“If the people of India give us a chance, the BRS can provide round-the-clock power supply even to the remotest villages of the country and financial assistance to 25 lakh Dalit families per year under the Dalit Bandhu scheme,” he said.
Stating that the BRS will hoist the pink flag in New Delhi in the next elections, KCR said that “the BRS was going to play a vital role in national politics,” and added that “the Telangana model will be replicated across the country through optimum utilisation of available natural resources”.
Brushing aside criticism from the Opposition parties over the BRS foraying into national politics, he advised party leaders to ignore them.“The party had surpassed similar criticism and went on to achieve Telangana apart from developing the young state into a role model for others,” he said.
Earlier, KCR performed special prayers to Goddess Gowri at Telangana Bhavan and unfurled the new pink flag of the BRS with an Indian map replacing the Telangana map present in the TRS flag earlier. He signed the official documents pertaining to the change of name from TRS to BRS.
Former Karnataka chief minister H D Kumaraswamy, popular actor-political activist Prakash Raj and others were also present at the meeting.
Telangana BJP spokesperson N V Subhash said the formation of BRS was nothing but an attempt by KCR to transfer power to his son K T Rama Rao in the state.
“Moreover, mere change of name from TRS to BRS does not make it a national party. The party has to go a long way to meet guidelines of the election commission to get national party recognition,” he said.
Subhash further said the BRS would be a home of rehabilitation for some politicians who were abandoned or sidelined by their respective parties in various states.