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State Releases Info on Race to the Top Allocations

ATLANTA -- The state of Georgia has released numbers for how the Race to the Top stimulus money will be allocated. Metro Atlanta has four of the 29 school districts from across the state receiving money over the next four years.

Atlanta City Schools will get $39.3 million, Clayton County will get $15.3 million, Dekalb will see $30 million and Gwinnett gets about $20.8 million.

In order to keep these funds schools must submit a budget and must be in line with four assurances. These include teacher and leader effectiveness and money for turn-around schools -- which are the lowest performing schools in each district.

For a full look at all the schools from across the state getting money, take a look at the table below.

 

Doraville Educators to Volunteer at Food Bank

DORAVILLE, GA -- On Monday, Oct. 11, faculty and staff of Northwoods Montessori School in Doraville will take a day off to give back to the city, help those in need -- and have a little fun in the process.

The educators will work in the community garden of the Atlanta Community Food Bank (732 Joseph E. Lowery Boulevard NW, Atlanta, 30318). This day of service will help both the needy and the teachers, who hope to gain knowledge from the experience to bring to their personal fall classroom gardens. Students at Northwoods Montessori have already been hard at work at the food bank, packing food for Atlantans who need support.

Classes will resume on Tuesday, Oct. 12; Northwoods teachers plan to bring back newfound expertise and enthusiasm for giving to share with their students.

N.C. Wreck Claims 4 Members of a Gwinnett Family

Washington County, N.C. - - The North Carolina Highway Patrol confirms four members of a family from Gwinnett County, including two young children, died after an SUV lost control in a weather-related accident Thursday afternoon.

The wreck, on U.S. 64, west of Creswell, happened around 12:20 p.m.

The dead are identified as 27-year-old Daniel Alvarez, who was the driver, 29-year-old Natalie Owens, one-year-old Ariela Alvarez and three-year-old Zacharia Alvarez. Ezeikel Alvarez, Zacharia's twin, survived and is being treated at a hospital.

Witnesses told the Highway Patrol that the Jeep hydroplaned on the highway, and went off the right side of the road. The vehicle then ran down a small hill, hit an embankment and flipped over into a canal.

Troopers say those killed appeared to have drowned.

Early Retirement Saves Money, Creates Budget Crunch at Dekalb Jail

DEKALB, Co.-- An effort to save money in Dekalb County has put the Sheriff in a budget and manpower challenge at the jail.

Sheriff Thomas Brown lost 89 employees when early retirement was offered by Dekalb County as a cost saving measure. Most of those employees worked at the Dekalb County jail. The sheriff says as he has struggles to find qualified entry-level replacements, he's working his remaining detention officers overtime to maintain order at the jail.

"We have to have enough people at the jail to operate it safely," said Sheriff Brown. "We been having regularly work people overtime, and that's pushed against a depressed budget I have."

Sheriff Brown said he's already spent a million dollars beyond his overtime budget. He's been using money from other areas of his budget to keep the jail fully staffed.

Is Texting-While-Driving Ban Making an Impact?

ATLANTA -- Early data from Georgia, and the most recent national study, suggest texting bans aren't as effective as most wish they were.

The numbers show a very heated law off to a very slow start.

READ: Highway Loss Data Institute Findings

In Georgia, Governor Sonny Perdue signed a texting-while-driving ban into law earlier this year; it went into effect in July and started getting enforced in August.

"Since then, we have issued 30 citations," said Trooper 1st Class Carlos Searcy of the Georgia State Patrol.

That's less than one per day.

Thousands to Participate in Hands On Atlanta Day

ATLANTA -- More than 10,000 people, including Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, will join together on Saturday, Oct. 2 for the 20th anniversary of Hands On Atlanta Day, one of the largest days of service in the country.

The volunteers will participate in more than 100 different service projects around the city, including cleaning up neighborhood parks, collecting trash in local communities, planting flowers at area schools, organizing food bank pantries, various painting projects and more.

"We are humbled by Atlanta's unwavering commitment to volunteer service and financial contributions from our supporters over the past 20 years," said Gina Simpson, president of Hands On Atlanta. "Hands On Atlanta honors these volunteers and reminds the community that, while we have done great work, there is much left to do."

Hands On Atlanta Day 2010 will start with an 8:30 a.m.

Lani Wong to Replace William Flippin

DeKalb County Chief Executive Officer Burrell Ellis announced his appointment of Lani Wong to a two-year term on the board of the Development Authority of DeKalb County following confirmation by the Board of Commissioners.  Ms. Wong will finish William Flippin’s term. Flippin resigned earlier this year.