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State Lawmakers Begin The Work Of School Finance Reform

House public education leaders are digging into a legislative effort deemed a priority by House Speaker Joe Straus this session, public school finance reform. Ahead of the start of the session, Speaker Straus, a San Antonio Republican made it clear, reforming how the state funds public schools is at the top of his legislative agenda. One of Straus’ ideas for reforming school finance is ending the state’s Robin Hood system. That’s where the state redistributes tax money from property wealthy...

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When Ali Cobby Eckermann received the email announcing she'd won one of the world's richest literary prizes, the unemployed Aboriginal poet says she had no idea what to think — though two thoughts weren't long in coming.

A survivor of abuse has resigned from Pope Francis' panel on clerical sex abuse, citing "shameful" resistance within the Vatican to the group's efforts to protect children.

White House adviser Kellyanne Conway acted "inadvertently" when she urged shoppers to buy Ivanka Trump's products on Fox and Friends last month and won't make the same mistake again, the Trump administration says.

"It is noted that Ms. Conway made the statement in question in a light, off-hand manner while attempting to stand up for a person she believed had been unfairly treated and did so without nefarious motive or intent to benefit personally," wrote Stefan C. Passantino, deputy counsel to the president, compliance and ethics.

President Trump's address to Congress Tuesday night was either, in Vice President Pence's view, an example of Trump's "broad shoulders, big heart, reaching out" vision — or — in the eyes of House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi, a "bait and switch" speech.

When James Harris rushed his wife, Salome Karwah, to a hospital at the edge of Monrovia on the night of February 19, he expected that she'd be treated as a priority case. Salome was a prominent Ebola survivor and ex-Doctors Without Borders employee who'd graced the cover of Time magazine in 2014 as one of the "Ebola Fighters" named persons of the year.

President Trump is receiving plaudits for his first joint address to Congress.

The White House certainly thinks it went well — so much so, it was reported that the White House is holding its revised travel ban, in part, to bask in the glow of the positive reviews.

Snap polls after the speech showed that people who watched it largely liked it.

A Canadian investigative consumer program ordered DNA analysis of several fast-food chicken sandwiches and concluded that Subway chicken was only half meat — with the other half soy.

The sandwich chain strongly rebuts the allegations, with a spokesman calling them "absolutely false" and calling for a retraction.

A month ago, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte hit the pause button on his controversial war on drugs. That war has left more than 7,500 people dead since Duterte took office last June, promising a "dirty" and "bloody" fight against drugs.

"Do your duty, and if in the process, you kill 1,000 persons, I will protect you," Duterte, nicknamed "The Punisher," told police days after his election.

And he did — standing by them fiercely in the months that followed, despite allegations of of extrajudicial killings that prompted international outrage.

In his speech last night, President Trump asked Congress to pass a broad school choice initiative.

"I am calling upon members of both parties to pass an education bill that funds school choice for disadvantaged youth, including millions of African-American and Latino children. ...

"These families should be free to choose the public, private, charter, magnet, religious or home school that is right for them."

Updated at 2:30 p.m. ET

A former officer for the Central Intelligence Agency, Sabrina De Sousa, was released from custody today after Italy's president granted her partial clemency over a 2003 kidnapping that was part of the agency's extraordinary rendition program.

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