Community / International / National / News / February 12, 2014

News Briefs: Cooke Elementary shuts down

Cooke Elementary School to close 

GALESBURG – The Board of Education of District 205 voted unanimously on Monday to close Cooke Elementary School after the end of the current school year. Shutting the school will eliminate 18 jobs and save the district $930,000 annually. The closure is part of a larger package of measures designed to deal with the $4.4 million deficit that the district is currently facing, largely caused by declines in funding from the state of Illinois. The state failed to meet 11 percent of its funding obligations to the district this year and is generally expected to meet even fewer this year. Many of the parents who attended the meeting were critical of the decision to shut down Cooke, saying it was made far too hastily. (Source: The Galesburg Register-Mail)


White House welcomes French President

WASHINGTON – There were 350 guests present at a state dinner in the White House to welcome French President Francois Hollande to Washington. Hollande is the first foreign leader to be honored with a state dinner since the re-election of President Barack Obama and the first French leader to be so honored since 1996. The visit was a sign of new strength in Franco-American relations after years of difficulties caused by the Iraq War, which France strongly opposed. Obama proclaimed in a toast that the ties between the two nations, which dates back over two centuries, has never been stronger. (Source: Reuters)


 Switzerland puts limits on immigration

GENEVA – Citizens of Switzerland approved a controversial new measure this week to limit immigration into the country, causing widespread concerns about how this will affect the country’s relationship with the European Union. The measure introduces quotas on the number of foreign workers allowed into the country and mandates that companies give Swiss nationals preferential treatment in hiring. Switzerland is not an EU member state, although it has signed agreements with the bloc to allow for free movements of goods and investments, as well as workers between the two, agreements that may now be in jeopardy. The law was approved by a slim majority of Swiss citizens, with support heaviest in the German- and Italian-speaking regions of the country. (Source: The BBC)

Matt Barry
Matt Barry is a senior majoring in international relations and double minoring in economics and German. This is his third year working for TKS, having served previously as discourse editor. He has worked for such organizations as the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, Premier Tourism Marketing and the Council on American Islamic Relations-Chicago, where his work appeared in such publications as Leisure Group Travel, Ski & Ride Club Guide and The Chicago Monitor. Matt has written his political opinion column, "The Voice of Reason," weekly for three years, which finished in first place at the 2012 Illinois College Press Association conference and was also recognized at the 2013 conference.

Tags:  cooke elementary school francois hollande immigration obama switzerland

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