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first_imgSouth African students writing thenational matric exams in 2010 managedto score a 67.8% pass rate – a 7.2%improvement on the previous year’s result. (Image: Bongani Nkosi) Shouts of joy echoed through many of South Africa’s poorer communities on the morning of 6 January 2011 as the previous year’s national matric results were released. Several matriculants in these areas – with little or no family income, scant classroom resources and lack of transport – managed to rise above the odds and pass the exams convincingly, significantly boosting the profiles of the schools they attended.Countrywide, there have been pass rate increases of between 10% and 50%, making matriculants’ families, schools and communities extremely proud.Eddie Sebaya, principal at Raphela Secondary School in Johannesburg’s Orange Farm township, was chuffed after receiving his school’s results. “It’s really a dream come true for us to achieve these results. From the first term of the year we started working to ensure we improved our pass rate,” he said.Despite Orange Farm being hit hard by poverty and HIV/Aids, the school managed to up its pass rate from 45% in 2009 to 89% in 2010.Education the key to a better life“Education is the only way we can fight poverty and improve lives in our community,” said Raphela school matriculant Noluthando Khumalo.“With a good matric pass, we can study further or get a good job and improve our families, and then our community. It was not easy, but we did it. We hope our results inspire those who follow us to do even better.”Sebaya said his pupils had overcome many obstacles to achieve such good academic results. “This is a very poor community and our school has very few resources to work with.”Key to the school’s success was making a few changes to help pupils study and grasp the subject matter.“We asked the students to start coming to school earlier in the first term. This was to give them a chance to read and go through their work before classes started. They would then ask questions on anything they did not understand before starting on the new work of that day. The students committed to this and it clearly proved successful,” Sebaya said.But this is only the beginning, the principal added. “The real hard work starts now, we have to maintain this kind of result, we cannot drop below 90% now. The community will expect us to keep up this kind of result and increase from here.”Parent involvement vitalLethukuthula Secondary School in Katlehong, east of Johannesburg, grew its pass rate from 61% in 2009 to 97% in 2010. “Im really proud of the students’ achievement this year,” said principal Doctor Ngobese.“We were determined from the beginning of the year to achieve this kind of pass rate. With the help of our governing body, who are the parents of the students, we realised our goal.”Langeberg High School in Robertson – a farming area in the Western Cape – increased its pass rate by 35%, achieving an 87% average in 2010. Principal Dr Adriaan Landman said hard work helped bring about the good results.“The learners worked hard throughout the year. They were very motivated. Parent involvement played an important role in ensuring the learners did well,” he said.‘Worth every step’Thandi Hlogwane from Lugaju High School in Impendle, rural KwaZulu-Natal, said she had to walk vast distances to get to school, but it was worth every step. “I walked very far every day to get to school. There are no high schools near my house, so I had to walk for about two hours to get to school. I would leave home early to ensure I was at school by at least 6am, so I could start studying and going over my school work.”Hlogwane got a distinction in mathematics and physics, and hopes to study medicine at the University of KwaZulu-Natal this year.“Waking up early every morning and studying over the weekends while my peers hung out was all worth it. My dream is to be a doctor and I’ve achieved the academic results to realise that dream. Now my next step is to secure a bursary.”last_img read more

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Matt ReeseFirst, let me say that this blog is 100% guaranteed to NOT help commodity prices or the overall farm economy. It also should be noted that I am NOT a: preacher, doctor, researcher, PhD, or anything other than your friendly farm writer.With these important disclaimers out of the way, please read on. As I continue to hear about more farms being sold, mounting economic stress for farms and very bad things occasionally happening within the agricultural community when things go wrong, I feel compelled to share some thoughts on how to handle the inevitable challenges of life, including these tough agricultural times.First, when tough times come about on the farm, it is important to understand that the only thing you can actually control is what you do. You can influence/manipulate/orchestrate many things, but you can only truly control your actions.So what shapes your actions? I believe that everything we do is driven by our guiding set of principles or priorities. Tough times offer great opportunities assess the personal priority list guiding your actions and decisions. If you haven’t done this, there is no time like the present. Start at the top with the most important thing, then work your way down the list. Note that each item on the list has influence over every item below it on the list. Also, be sure to include “self” on the list (I promise you that it will be on there somewhere even if you don’t include it).Now, here is the interesting part. Review some recent decisions you have made (both important and mundane) and compare them to the priority list you crafted. If a decision you made for one item on the list hurts or detracts from an item above it on the list of ideal priorities, you need to move that item below the item that drove the decision. For example, if you list “family” as your No. 3 priority, but miss an important family event to work on the “farm” that is your No. 4 priority, the “farm” is a least a No. 3 priority for that particular decision and “family” is at best a No. 4. If you have a pattern of behavior that regularly creates this situation, your decision-making is out of whack with your priorities. You need to either re-assess your priorities or your decision-making.So, what is your No. 1? Everyone has one. It is the one last thing you would give up if you lost everything. It is your reason for existing and the biggest part of how you value yourself as a person. And, whether you acknowledge it or not, protecting your No. 1 thing is your top priority in life. It can either protect or destroy everything else on your priority list. What is it? It could be many things that are very positive including: spouse, children, family, home, status, achievement, career, business, God/religion, or relationships. It could also be negative problems including: addictions, excess, or material items.Deep down, if you really think about it, you can look through your life’s pattern of decisions and figure out your No. 1, but be warned: it may not be what you want it to be.A person’s No. 1 thing has a powerful impact on their decision-making and, if threatened, the No. 1 can lead to irrational and harmful choices. Certainly for many farmers, (right or wrong) there is a great incentive to make the farm their No. 1 thing. It is so easy to do. The farm, for so many, can be a legacy, business, career, family, religion, and self all wrapped into one giant No. 1.During tough economic times such as these, there can be devastating consequences with this. In recent years, hundreds of Ohio dairy farms have gone out of business due (at least in part) to the grim economic situation. That is a tough situation no matter how you look at it, but if milking cows is your No. 1 reason for existing and you lose the farm, then what?Aside from figuring out the top priority, the second most important thing to consider is the ACTUAL placement of “self” on the list based upon decisions that have been made. This is very tricky to determine.If you list your farm as No. 1 and YOU protect “farm” at the continual expense of everything else on YOUR list because YOU have determined it is the most important thing to protect, which item is really at the top of your list? I would argue that, if we really scrutinize most of our lists, sneaky “self” almost universally works it’s way to the top.My apologies for being a bit preachy and grim, but times for agriculture are tough and, with the holiday season just around the corner, I fear stress, anxiety and suffering could all be on the rise for many in the Ohio agricultural community I love. More farms will be lost. More lives will be changed. That is inevitable and, in some cases, beyond control. In our control, however, are the actions we take based on the priorities we set.What’s your No. 1?For further reading, see Mark 9:35 and Exodus 20:3.last_img read more

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Anthony GrederDTN Managing EditorOMAHA (DTN) — U.S. winter wheat is starting off the 2019 growing season in the best condition in three years, according to USDA’s first weekly Crop Progress report released Monday.For the week ended March 31, 2019, winter wheat was rated 56% in good-to-excellent condition, well above 32% at the same time last year and the highest initial good-to-excellent rating in three years. Nine percent of the crop was rated poor to very poor, well below 30% last year.Top winter-wheat-producing state Kansas reported 55% of its crop in good-to-excellent condition, far better than 10% at the same time last year. More problems with the crop are being seen in Ohio and Michigan so far.For the other crops USDA included in its report this week, planting was progressing at a near- to above-average pace. Sorghum was 13% planted, compared to 8% last year and a 9% five-year average. Cotton planting was 4% complete, compared to 6% last year and a 3% average. Rice was 12% planted, compared to 15% last year and a 12% average.Oats were 25% planted as of March 31, compared to 22% last year and a 25% average. Emergence was at 25%, compared to 21% last year and a 23% average.Nationwide, soil moisture was considerably higher this year than last year at the same time. Based on reports from 48 states, topsoil moisture nationally was rated 8% very short to short compared to 24% last year and 92% adequate to surplus compared to 76% last year. Subsoil moisture was rated 8% short to very short compared to 28% last year and 92% adequate to surplus compared to 72% last year.National Crop Progress SummaryThisLastLast5-YearWeekWeekYearAvg.Cotton Planted4NA63Sorghum Planted13NA89Oats Planted25NA2225Oats Emerged25NA2123Rice Planted12NA1512Rice Emerged2NA53**National Crop Condition Summary(VP=Very Poor; P=Poor; F=Fair; G=Good; E=Excellent)This WeekLast WeekLast YearVPPFGEVPPFGEVPPFGEWinter Wheat27354511NANANANANA111938284Anthony Greder can be reached at anthony.greder@dtn.comFollow him on Twitter @AGrederDTN(AG)© Copyright 2019 DTN/The Progressive Farmer. All rights reserved.last_img read more

first_imgaudrey watters Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Tags:#news#web A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img Related Posts 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market As the FTC eyes consumer privacy issues and investigates an online “Do Not Track” option, it seems as though web browsers are responding in kind, offering their own solutions to better protect Internet users’ data. For its part, IE9 says it will offer “Tracking Protection” via the browser. And now Mozilla has released its contribution: a set of privacy icons meant to inform people about how their data may be used by the websites they visit.Mozilla lead designer Aza Raskin posted the alpha version of the privacy icons on his blog, along with an explanation of their meaning and a recognition of the challenges to adoption they might face. Privacy Icons Noting the complexity of privacy policies and Terms of Service agreements, Raskin says a “catch-all boilerplate” icon is impossible. Instead of replacing privacy policies, the new icons are meant to “bolt on” to existing policies, but give Web visitors an “iron clad guarantee” about how a company treats user data.The icons break down into five categories: Is your data only for “intended use”? Is your data bought or sold? Is your data given to advertisers? How long is your data kept? Does the site require the government follow the legal process before handing over data? “Data” here, I should add, means “data that is either personally identifiable (including name, ip address, or email address) or associated with some personally identifiable aspect of your identity (such as correlated with your IP address name, or email address).”Nice Icons, But… They’re nice icons, don’t get me wrong. But the question, of course, will anyone use them? According to Raskin, “Sites already try to differentiate base on privacy concerns, and these icons simply codify what they are already doing. Second, if Privacy Icons become widely adopted (and I think Mozilla is in a unique position to help make that happen) then the correlation of good companies using the icons and bad companies not using the icons becomes rather strong. The absence of Privacy Icons becomes a warning flag for when you go to sign up for new service.”He also adds that there’s a possibility that Mozilla could make the privacy icons machine readable, meaning that if Firefox encounters a privacy policy doesn’t have the icons, the browser could automatically display the icon with the poorest guarantees – certainly incentive for websites to comply.But for now, these privacy icons – machine readable or otherwise – are a long way from reality. Indeed, as Raskin announced last week that he was leaving Mozilla to co-found a healthcare startup, the future of this icon project isn’t clear.last_img read more

first_imgAllen preached the value of practice to the team in his five-minute impromptu speech, instilling to the young Pirates that the pain comes before the pleasure while encouraging them to continue working hard as they prepare for the bigger wars ahead.“It’s hard when you’re at the top, right? Because you have to work extra hard,” said Allen. “One of the things that I’ve always prided myself on, in my whole career, is execution. Now you have to work harder because you can’t sneak up on anybody anymore.”“Now, the teams you’re supposed to beat are going to play you extra tough, like you’re the world champions. Now, you have to not get tired of the process. You don’t win a championship the day they give you the trophy. You win a championship every morning you wake up at six. That’s where the reward comes.”Perez said he was honored to meet someone like Allen, who has won two titles in the NBA with the Boston Celtics and the Miami Heat.“We’re all starstruck and we’re very happy because he told us what we need to do, which is to continue preparing hard because we’re the number one team and the other teams are already going after us,” he said.ADVERTISEMENT LOOK: UFC fighters Ronda Rousey, Travis Browne share photos from their wedding Celebrity chef Gary Rhodes dies at 59 with wife by his side Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next NATO’s aging eye in the sky to get a last overhaul Biggest Pogo service provider padlocked for tax evasion Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ The Pirates, who are undefeated this NCAA Season 93 men’s basketball tournament after nine games in the first round, got a surprise of a lifetime as NBA veteran Ray Allen dropped by their team dinner on Tuesday.Lyceum’s top gun CJ Perez shared that the whole team was shocked to meet the legendary sharpshooter, who is in the country for a couple of days.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games opening“We’re surprised to see someone like Ray Allen go to our school. It’s a rare thing to happen for us,” he said.In the video posted by Lyceum’s official page, the two-time NBA champion was seen shaking everyone’s hands before asking, “I heard you guys were in first place?” LATEST STORIES For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity. MOST READ Lyceum gets all the good things these days.ADVERTISEMENT Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong protesters View commentslast_img read more

first_imgCardi B to play a stripper in HustlersInstagramCardi B turns into a sexy stripper for Hustlers and we are left stunned with her avatar! The rapper, who will make her silver screen debut in Hustlers, showcased what she would look like in the film. Needless to say, it is quite raunchy!Going by the name Diamond, the former real-life pole dancer and reality star will play the role of a stripper in the upcoming film. As she took a mirror selfie of herself and posted it on Instagram, she captioned the look as, “Y’all ready for DIAMOND to come to a theatre near you this fall? HUSTLER MOVIE !” In the picture, you can see Cardi rocking a minuscule piece of strappy pink and blue thong bodysuit with strappy silver heels that wire around the length of her legs right up to her thighs. Clearly, she’s game for all the Hustlers madness. Check out her picture. Cardi B as Diamond for HustlersInstagramThe film also stars Jennifer Lopez, Lili Reinhart, Constance Wu and Julia Stiles in pivotal roles. In fact, on the day of JLo starting her shoot for the film, her beau, Alex Rodriguez took to Instagram to share his good wishes for the actress/singer. He wrote, “This beautiful woman starts shooting her movie tomorrow, “Hustlers.” I won’t play spoiler, but I can’t wait until you all see how she transforms herself into a completely different character!! She’s been working so hard lately. I’m glad we were able to enjoy a quick little break before she dives into this new project. Love you baby and continue to shine, fly high and inspire all of us. @jlo #hustlers” Alex Rodriguez’s post for Jennifer LopezInstagramHustlers is inspired from the 2015 New York Magazine article about a group of former strip club employees coming together to entice and trick their Wall Street clients, a story which went super viral. Makers of the film, STX, announced that they will be producing Hustlers back in March, this year. Apart from Lili and the others, the movie also stars Keke Palmer. They all play vengeful strippers in the film.last_img read more

DPR 2015 Summer Camp Information Fair

first_imgThe DC Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) will host a summer camp reduced rate information fair on Jan. 24 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Hillcrest Recreation Center, located at 3100 Denver St., S.E. The fair is being hosted to assist D.C. residents with completing theirreduced rate application. DPR offers a reduced rate for qualified, District residents to ensure that summer camps are available to everyone, regardless of one’s income level.For more information, visit: http://dpr.dc.gov/.last_img read more

Count on the contemporary

first_imgAll the art lovers across the Capital can head on for this art exhibition cum sale of curated fine arts, decors and jewelry being organised by Artanddecors.com. The main aim of this show that is on till 17 August  is to appreciate the value of art and create awareness about the Indian contemporary paintings. The collection from Arrested By Art, a contemporary art boutique is a visually rich representation of our beautiful cultural heritage comprising of world famous iconography like peacocks, Maharajas and Maharanis.This collection has been designed to suit the requirements of today’s contemporary audiences starting at Rs 4,500. All art works are accompanied by Certificate of Authenticity mentioning the title and date of the artwork along with an acknowledgment of the artist. The collection includes not only Indian contemporary artworks but also abstract and modern contemporary artworks too.last_img read more

Freedom to Stand

first_imgEver imagined getting a call of nature and having nowhere to go? That would be awkward. Well not in India, at least not for men. While women have no choice but to suppress the call of nature, men would ease themselves in some corner or wall in full public view. You might give it a second thought on attending to nature’s call, on seeing the condition of public toilets in India. At any given point of time, a woman who wants to pee desperately has definitely thought of this one thing, ‘we wish we could pee while standing.’ Well, why should boys have all the fun? What if women had the freedom to stand and pee! Yes, now that’s possible.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’“Ladies – You can now pee while standing,” says Pee-Buddy website. Launched by Delhi based startup First Step Digital in December last year, Pee-Buddy claims to provide women the freedom to stand and pee anywhere such as public toilets in malls, airports, hospitals, highways, railway stations or even those in the metro stations. Pee-Buddy is the first of its kind use-and-throw product that allows women to pee while standing. It is a waterproof paper funnel that can be kept in bags at all times and used in toilets to pee without causing any spills or leaks. It’s a funnel-shaped female urination device (FUD), probably the first of its kind in India.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with Netflix“With Pee Buddy, women just need to place it between the flow area (no insertion is required) and urinate. This way they can stay away from infections. On a different note, it is also useful because many times, due to dirty toilets, women hold the urge to urinate for a long time, which is a major reason for kidney stones,” said Deep Bajaj, Pee Buddy, founder as per an agency report.It’s not always the thinking seat that pops up a brilliant idea but at times a road trip does that too. “The inspiration for Pee Buddy came from a trip in 2013,” shares Deep. “We were on a road trip on the Delhi-Jaipur highway.  While the men drank beer and water casually, the women did not. Why? While men could pee anywhere and everywhere, womenfolk, on the other hand, needed clean toilets to ease themselves. The idea of a funnel using which women should be able to stand and pee like men was suggested by a friend’s wife. That thought stayed with me and the idea started taking shape thereafter,” he added. “We wanted to keep the name as direct as possible. It’s not an issue which is to be kept under wraps, common toilets are an issue and it was time that it got highlighted with same urgency,” he comments.    Public toilets are the hub for infectious water borne and air borne diseases causing UTI and other diseases. Women often end up using toilets in places like KFC, McDonald’s and CCD, but at the cost of buying something, which is not always possible. Pee-Buddy is highly beneficial for pregnant women and arthritis patients who are advised by their doctors to restrict their body movements. The device is more reliable as it is discharged after one use, preventing any chance of bacteria accumulation if used a second time.  “I had experienced this issue for women in my life. One with my life partner, during pregnancy, when ladies are a lot more prone to UTI and hence don’t travel much, and second in the case of my mother who had arthritis,” says Deep. Pee-Buddy is available online and in market stores all over India in packs of 5, 10, 20 and 40 for Rs 120, 200, 375, 720 respectively.last_img read more

first_img Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global No one expected Apple to stand on the smartwatch sidelines and now that they have decided to jump in the game, they are coming out swinging.The company is reportedly planning several different designs for its upcoming smartwatch, one that will feature more than 10 sensors to track health, fitness and medical information. The wellness components should come as no surprise. Last month Apple launched Health, an app that gathers user’s fitness and health information, along with its HealthKit platform, an application focused on tracking. The company has also applied for patents pertaining to health and fitness.The device will be able to perform many functions independently as well as messaging, voice calling and video calling when paired with an iPhone and other iOS devices, Reuters reports.Related: Meet Ringly, Where Wearble Tech Meets High-Fashion BlingThe smartwatch could become available as soon as October, as production will most likely begin in July at Taiwan’s Quanta Computer Inc 2382, the longtime supplier of Apple’s computers, media outlets state. Estimations vary with some speculating that Apple will produce between 10 and 15 million units by the end of year and others stating 50 million units will ship within the first year.   The new device is aimed at beating competitors in terms of usefulness and functionality. The wearable tech that’s currently on the market from Google and Samsung has been criticized for not being meaningfully different from smartphones, an obstacle that Apple hopes to overcome as the company prepares to make good on Tim Cook’s promise to break into new product categories before year’s end.Several other companies including Sony, Motorola, LG and Samsung have released smart watches that analysts have dubbed mostly as failures, but Apple thinks it has the answer.Related: This Company Wants You to Wear Your SIM Card 2 min read June 20, 2014 Register Now » Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.last_img read more