PATT MORRISON SCHEDULE
Wednesday, May 30, 2012
CALL-IN @ 866-893-5722, 866-893-KPCC; OR JOIN THE CONVERSATION ONLINE ON THE PATT MORRISON BLOG AT KPCC-DOT-ORG
1:06 -1:30 OPEN
1:30 - 1:40
High school freshman creates breakthrough test for pancreatic cancer
Pancreatic cancer is one of the most difficult cancers to diagnose and often goes undetected until it reaches the most advanced stages. However, because of advances in medical science established by 15-year-old Maryland high school student Jack Andraka, the disease can now be found before it spreads. Andraka earned the grand prize at the 2012 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair for creating a test that can detect early-stage pancreatic cancer with 90 percent accuracy and at a faster and cheaper rate than other tests. Andraka won $75,000 in prize money, which he plans to put toward college. Listen in as Patt discusses this award-winning creation with Jack Andraka himself.
Jack Andraka, 15-year-old cancer researcher; freshman at North County High School in Glen Burnie, Maryland; winner, Gordon E. Moore Award of $75,000 at 2012 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair
1:40 - 2:00
Deciding who has the right to vote in Florida
Elections are decided vote by vote, and in the aftermath of Barack Obama's win in the 2008 election, Republicans in hotly contested states like Florida have been waging a campaign to remove voters from the voting rolls. Florida's legislature enacted a new voting law in 2011 that makes it harder for organizations like the League of Women Voters and Rock the Vote to register new voters. After all, the groups these kinds of organizations tend to lean left or independent and conservatives have figured out that the best way to get more votes is to prevent voters on the other side from being able to vote at all. Florida's Republican governor, Rick Scott, has also been working with Secretary of State Ken Detzner to purge Florida's voting rolls of suspected noncitizens. In Miami-Dade County alone 1,638 people were flagged by the state as 'noncitizens,' and would be removed from voting rolls if they did not present proof of citizenship within 30 days. With the presidential race tightening up - and Florida's history of election controversy - every vote may count in November. Are these tactics just or effective? How will they have an effect on this year's election?
2:06 - 3:00
There is the ongoing contentious debate brewing in education over linking teachers' job security to their students' academic performance. Many teachers complain that the emphasis on measuring their performance based on student performance, as well as the general stress on test scores, creates a temptation to forego creative, challenging lesson plans and instead "teach to the test." Some are struggling against the trend, arguing that it can inflict long-term damage if students graduate without learning comprehensive reading and critical thinking skills. During this special hour, we check-in on a program called Humanitas at Grant High School in the San Fernando Valley that is employing an innovative approach to teaching - one that seems to be successful, though not without its challenges. As the Humanitas program tries to go beyond "teaching to the test," its teachers confront a host of challenges: How do they reach kids who have made it to high school without ever reading a book and have limited study skills? How do they assign compelling and contemporary reading material when there aren't enough textbooks and the school's copy machines don't work? How do they make kids feel valued when they don't have enough desks or even janitors to sweep the floors? How do they get parents, many of whom are immigrants and either unfamiliar with the school system or too busy working long hours, to participate in their kids' education? How do they get the resources and support they need to implement the program to its fullest potential?
Brock Cohen, teacher, Humanitas program, Grant High School
Katie Cohen, former teacher, Hunatias program, Grant High School