Local & Regional News

Arkansas local and regional news

Six researchers are laying out details of how they plan to study the causes of childhood obesity. The Center for Childhood Obesity Prevention at the Arkansas Children’s Research Institute announced its first round of projects Wednesday.

Created last year through a $9.4 million grant from the National Institutes of Health, the Center for Childhood Obesity Prevention seeks to address all levels of the issues surrounding overweight kids.

Jack Greene
Arkansas Department of Correction

Groups of lawyers and mental health professionals want Arkansas' governor to stop the scheduled execution of Jack Greene, saying the inmate is mentally ill.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson said he is reviewing Greene's case.

The inmate is scheduled to die Nov. 9 for the 1991 death of Sidney Burnett. Prosecutors say Greene beat Burnett with a can of hominy before slitting his throat and shooting him.

Marissa Marisa Pavan Birth Certificate certificates same-sex marrriage
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

A judge says he plans to order Arkansas to mediate its differences with three same-sex couples over the state's birth certificate law, which the U.S. Supreme Court found to illegally favor heterosexual parents.

Pulaski County Circuit Judge Tim Fox entered the initial order on Monday. On Tuesday, he set it aside because a state Supreme Court order sending the issue back to his court hasn't taken effect. Fox says he'll order mediation once that happens.

Victims of Hurricane Maria are weighing the possibility of a fresh start in Arkansas this winter.

The University of Arkansas at Fayetteville is among a handful of schools on the United States’ mainland offering tuition help to Puerto Rican students whose universities were damaged and closed after the storm.

Some universities on the U.S. mainland are offering assistance to students in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean affected by Hurricane Maria. Several schools have gone as far as waiving tuition, others have offered reduced tuition by granting in-state status.

Eighteen-year-old Mariela Serrano arrived in Miami to attend Florida International University a month before Hurricane Maria devastated her home in Puerto Rico. Then, FIU announced it would give students from Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands in-state tuition, extending the offer to current students like Serrano.

Image via Creative Commons

A criminal record can often prevent people from obtaining employment, secure housing, or qualifying for loans. But a clinic hosted by the Center for Arkansas Legal Services hopes to change that by helping low-income people seal criminal records for minor offenses. The clinic will take place Friday at Shorter College in North Little Rock.

Children of immigrant families fare worse in Arkansas than those in most other states, according to a report released Tuesday.

The “Race for Results: Building a Path to Opportunity for All Children” report says 69 percent of Arkansas’s children who are either immigrants themselves or have at least one parent born outside of the country are growing up in low-income families. Rich Huddleston, Executive Director of Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families said he hopes this data will inspire policy changes.

A high school student participates in early college
www.uaptc.edu

A national study by the Community College Research Center at Columbia University reports that programs in Arkansas that let high school students take college-level classes through their local community college appear to be doing a good job of benefiting people of all incomes.

An official with the Arkansas Department of Higher Education told lawmakers Thursday the department is moving ahead with forming procedures to try to address sexual assault on college campuses.

The Department is approaching a November 3 deadline to create a plan for preventing sexual assault and for providing more comprehensive education on how sexual assault is legally defined.

In 2004, a Harvard graduate, Michelle Kuo, arrived in the Mississippi Delta town of Helena-West Helena as a volunteer teacher. While spending two years teaching at an alternative school for students with disciplinary issues, Kuo struck up a friendship with Patrick Browning, a quiet student who did well in her class. A few years later, Kuo returned to Helena to read with Patrick again: this time in the visitation room of the county jail, where Patrick was being held on a charge of murder.

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