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Elmwood parent unhappy with bullying response 

Elmwood Local Schools parent Brianne Perez is unhappy about the way her daughter is receiving support for mental health and bullying at school. Perez said her daughter has been bullied heavily, inflicts self harm and has spent 30 days in a residential unit. As a parent, she said she was supposed to be notified of any bullying with her daughter but that didn’t happen. According to the Sentinel-Tribune, Superintendent Tony Borton said incidents are not put on the record or sent to parents unless they are officially reported.

Wood County coach complaint

Zachary Gibson, an employee of Fastrak Performance, an independent contractor, was working as Bowling Green High School strength and conditioning coach, and faces allegations of inappropriate conduct with a student. The Wood County Sheriff’s Department is investigating the complaint and subpoenaed Gibson’s phone records. Gibson has previous offenses in which he was sentenced in Nov. 2010 for disseminating matter harmful to juveniles, but the terms expired in Nov. 2011. The company for whom Gibson worked does not conduct background checks and Bowling Green City School District did not know about Gibson’s offense before he arrived.

BG man arrested, now free

Steven Glock, a Bowling Green man, will be allowed to leave his home and go to work after being accused of rape, according to the Sentinel-Tribune. He has been indicted in Sept. 2021 on two counts, both in the first-degree, after he allegedly engaged in sexual conduct with a 9-year-old in 2019. He appeared last week before Wood County Common Pleas Judge Matt Reger, and has been allowed to return to work as long as his construction job site is not in the area of any juveniles or at homes with juveniles.

Slight surge in COVID-19 cases

As the semester comes to an end, Provost Joe Whitehead said he has noticed a slight surge in COVID-19 cases and hopes that once students leave for the summer, the surge will subside. “The clock is ticking, and the semester is winding down,” he said, adding he hopes this will deter “any potential spike.” According to BG Independent, there have been 20 new cases this week compared to the previous 11. Public health officials continue to monitor conditions and have been checking the water for the presence of the virus.

State

Changes suggested for substitute teacher requirements

Ohio schools have been finding it harder to get substitute teachers in K-12 schools. Proposed House Bill 583 would potentially allow schools to hire substitutes that do not have a college degree. Lawmakers had temporarily relaxed this requirement due to COVID-19 but this bill would make it a more permanent solution or extend the current regulations. According to the Ohio Capital Journal, Rep. Adam Bird said, “We’re just trying to give local school districts the flexibility to do what they think is in their best interest to keep learning going and keep kids in school.”

Disputes highlight Ohio Senate race

The primary elections are quickly approaching and Ohio Senate candidates are turning up the heat during debates. Others have attacked J.D. Vance for taking the stance of not caring what happens to Ukraine while former president, Donald Trump endorsed Vance April 15. According to Cleveland.com, one dispute between Mike Gibbons and Josh Mandel almost turned physical. These candidates have been spending their time creating campaign ads and mudslinging in all directions, making the race fluid with no clear winner. 

Ohio bridge funding more than doubles

Ohio is home to the second-most number of bridges in any state and earned a C+ on the American Society of Civil Engineers’ 2021 annual infrastructure report. Almost 80% of the bridges that were listed as, in poor condition, are owned by a local or county government. According to the Dayton Daily News, this year funding for these local bridges will more than double, rising from $45 million to $92.5 million. As part of the Ohio Department of Transportation’s Local Major Bridge Program, locally owned bridges will also be eligible for funding.

DeWine contracts COVID-19

Last week, Gov. Mike DeWine, tested positive for COVID-19 according to his personal physician. DeWine is fully vaccinated and his symptoms include body aches, runny nose and a headache. DeWine and his wife, Fran have quarantined at their home since testing positive. 

National

Easter shootings

Over Easter weekend the U.S. experienced three mass shootings, two in South Carolina and one in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The shooting in Pittsburgh left two dead and at least 31 wounded, taking place at a party with hundreds of people in a rental home in which many of the attendees were underage. The Allegheny County Medical Examiner’s Office has since identified the two victims, according to the Associated Press. One South Carolina shooting took place in a nightclub just north of the location where gunfire broke out in a busy mall.

Migrants from Mexico arrested

In March, U.S. border authorities arrested 210,000 migrants trying to cross the border. This is a 24% increase in border arrests from last year, leaving thousands of children unaccompanied in border patrol stations. According to Reuters.com, when President Biden took office in January 2021, he pledged to reverse the hardline immigration policies that were creating this high number of arrests, but there is no notable change yet. 

Death row inmate chooses firing squad

Richard Bernard Moore, a South Carolinian death row inmate, will be the first state prisoner scheduled to be executed in more than a decade. He chose to die by firing squad over the electric chair after spending 20 years on death row for killing a convenience store clerk in 1999. According to NPR, South Carolina is one of four states that allows a firing squad, and Moore is currently in a legal battle to determine if a firing squad or death by electrocution is cruel and unusual punishment.

Are Americans forgetting pandemic risks?

As COVID-19 numbers wax and wane, scientists are worried that Americans are forgetting the true risks of the pandemic. “I think that’s also why people are throwing their hands up in the air and saying, ‘screw it’,” Katelyn Jetelina, an epidemiologist at the University of Texas Health Center at Houston said. After the national mask mandate was lifted people might get the wrong idea that this pandemic is over and stop focusing on getting vaccinated. According to the New York Times, many testing sites and vaccine locations are closing.

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