Story of the day: Trouble at the Pittsburgh Public Schools. Watchdog group A+ Schools issues a bruising report that suggests the city schools are losing ground. Graduation rates are down, racial disparities are up, and there's even a slight downtick in the percentage of students eligible for Pittsburgh Promise college grants. School officials say teachers may have been too distracted by last year's threat of layoffs, which bodes ill considering the financial situation isn't likely to improve any time soon. The district is, however, planning a community meeting this Thursday night at CAPA. So I'm sure it's all in hand.
Here's one of those stories the Post-Gazette will disable comments on: Police actions are being investigated after a city officer shoots a 19-year-old East Liberty resident during a traffic stop. There are questions about whether Officer David Durbash should have reached inside the vehicle, putting himself at risk when driver Leon Ford tried to drive off. And today on KDKA Radio: 57 callers demand to know why the media doesn't question whether Leon Ford should have driven off!
After a weekend seminar on environmental activism, a group of protesters demonstrated against gas-drilling at a New Castle farm. (We first brought you the story of the Henry farm in September.) The protest, organized by the Shadbush Environmental Justice Collective, was peaceful, but attracted a couple dozen police and a helicopter. I guess they don't see much activism up Lawrence County way.
Does Kathleen Kane's victory in the state Attorney General race tell us anything meaningful about the improving political prospects for women? Well, maybe ... as long as those women aren't running for spots in, like, the sausage club that is the state Senate, which failed to improve on its 16 percent female participation rate this election.
Drummer and music-store owner Dave Whaley gets jumped by some knuckle-knob in a car, after an exchange of words on -- you guessed it! -- Carson Street on a Saturday night. You know, if this keeps up, South Side's reputation as a family-friendly entertainment district might be in jeopardy! Best wishes to Whaley during his recovery.