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Los Angeles teachers' strikes continue; a North Korean official goes to Washington.

Day Four of the Los Angeles Teachers' Strike

Ronen Tivony / NurPhoto via Getty Images

  • Negotiations resumed Thursday between the Los Angeles Teachers Union and district chiefs. Hundreds of teachers from the unified school district of Los Angeles have been on strike since Monday after talks with officials about contract changes were blocked last week.[[[[LA Times / Howard Blume]
  • The teachers' union has fairly clear demands: 6.5% increase, increase in class size, reduction of standardized tests and increase of support staff, such as full-time nurses. Officials agree with teachers that the system must change, but reject such an increase in spending.[[[[Vox / Amanda Sakuma]
  • The union and the school district have been negotiating these terms for two years and this is becoming increasingly personal on both sides. Teachers have directly accused the school system of having the money, but spending it. Meanwhile, the district tried unsuccessfully to ensure that federal courts prevent teachers from going on strike.[[[[Vox / Amanda Sakuma]
  • Schools are open, but with no teachers in the class, the number of student absences is increasing every day. This is a problem for schools because state funding depends on the number of assistants. Until now, schools are losing between 10 and 15 million dollars a day.[[[[LA Times / Howard Blume]
  • A strike occurred in Los Angeles 30 years ago for similar reasons. A significant difference is the 287% increase in the number of charter schools competing with traditional public schools for students, teachers and resources.[[[[Al Jazeera]
  • This movement is not alone. Teachers at the Chicago International Charter School today announced their intention to strike at the beginning of February if the demands of their contract are not met.[[[[Chicago Tribune / Juan Perez Jr.]
  • The strike has even attracted the attention of celebrities. The musician Steven Van Zandt was seen picketing yesterday. The school district relies heavily on charitable donations such as those provided by Van Zandt's TeachRock program.[[[[Rolling Stone / David Browne]

A visit from a North Korean official

  • North Korean representative Kim Yong Chol will travel to Washington to meet with President Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo tomorrow. The meeting comes a day after Vice President Mike Pence said that North Korea has taken no action to dismantle its nuclear weapons program.[[[[NYT / David E. Sanger]
  • Chol reportedly sent a letter from Kim Jong Un to Trump. Presidential spokesmen have not yet officially confirmed the exchange, but Pompeo has unexpectedly shortened his visit to Kuwait and is back in Washington today.[[[[Washington Post / Josh Rogin]
  • Trump will meet with North Korean officials on Thursday and will probably convene another summit with Kim Jong Un. The president said his dialogue with North Korea last year in Singapore had been productive, but no visible resolution did not demonstrate it.[[[[Washington Post / Anne Gearan and John Hudson]
  • The denuclearization talks come shortly after today's announcement by Trump of its intention to renew the Missile Defense Review, a program of the Cold War era. Its purpose is to deter enemy states like Iran from using their own arsenals.[[[[NYT / William J. Broad and Annie Karni]
  • Chinese President Xi Jinping welcomed Kim Jong Un last week. The two countries have probably coordinated a strategy to strengthen North Korea's economic priorities. Kim's denuclearization agenda eliminates the threat of using his nuclear weapons, not eliminating their presence completely. The United States wants Kim to completely dismantle the nuclear weapons of his country.[[[[BBC News]
  • Kim could demand that the United States lift the sanctions against his country in order to negotiate a nuclear deal. North Korea has not yet specified the number of weapons it has, but Kim could use this information to obtain Trump's concessions.[[[[Washington Post / Josh Rogin]


  • Facebook's 10-year Challenge may not be a harmless meme. Giving photos of yourself in 2009 and 2019 could actually help the platform's facial recognition software.[[[[Wired / Katie O'Neill]
  • One would think that all athletes are in perfect shape, but the NFL's obesity rate is surprisingly high.[[[[NYT / Ken Belson]
  • Technology companies are often responsible for soaring costs of living. Now, Microsoft has pledged $ 500 million for affordable housing in Seattle.[[[[NYT / Karen Weise]
  • Three Chicago police officers were charged with concealing the 2014 shooting of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald. After years of controversy, a judge acquitted the agents unexpectedly today.[[[[Chicago Tribune / Megan Crépeau, Christy Gutowski, Jason Meisner and Stacy St. Clair]
  • On Monday we talked about a vote of confidence in Greece: the president has survived but the future of his country is not clear.[[[[WSJ / Nektaria Stamouli]


"I think we have to act. I do not know what kind of action, because it's not what I do, but bitch, I'm scared. It's crazy. And I really feel bad for those people who have to go to work so they do not get screwed. [[[[Rapper Cardi B in a viral publication on Instagram addressing the partial closure of the government]

Look at this: The video game: this is not a good way to please the government

What happened when Illinois legalized machines known as "cocaine crack game"?[[[[YouTube / Ranjani Chakraborty]

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