State lawmakers poised to loosen rules for virtual charter schools

In the space of one day last week, North Carolina’s virtual charter schools saw their controversial plans for overhauling attendance requirements axed, and then, mostly, restored. Such is the often rapid-fire speed of amendments lobbed in state House and Senate committees as North Carolina lawmakers wrangle over their budget plan this month. But as House leaders approved their spending plan last week and Senate budget chiefs prepared to unveil their proposals this week, one thing is clear, according to the state’s public school advocates: The virtual charters, besieged by high dropout rates and nationwide concerns about poor academic performance, are bound for relaxed regulations in North Carolina anyway.

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Run or retain – Justices to decide how they keep their seats

Six justices of the state Supreme Court will hear argument this morning in a case that just might determine their own judicial destinies, considering in Faires v. State Board of Elections whether a new law subjecting them to an up-or-down approval vote at the end of their eight-year terms – as opposed to a contested election against a challenger – satisfies the constitutional mandate that justices in North Carolina be “elected.”

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Feds to issue new rules on “payday” and “car title” lending; Here’s why North Carolinians should be paying very close attention

North Carolinians can be forgiven if they haven’t thought a lot about the predatory “payday lending” business in recent years. Indeed, it was one of the great accomplishments of our state government in the early part of the last decade when it officially ended North Carolina’s four-year experiment with the business and made these inherently predatory loans illegal. The last of the payday shops was chased out of the state in 2006. Since that time, there have been periodic efforts to bring the practice back into North Carolina, but consumer advocates have repeatedly succeeded in beating them back.

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The UNC system endures a tumultuous year

The past year was a whirlwind for the state’s acclaimed public university system, beginning with the surprise ouster of its much-respected president and ending with the selection of a successor whose career has been deeply steeped in national Republican politics. ...

State lawmakers poised to loosen rules for virtual charter schools

In the space of one day last week, North Carolina’s virtual charter schools saw their controversial plans for overhauling attendance requirements axed, and then, mostly, restored. Such is the often rapid-fire speed of amendments lobbed in state House and Senate committees as North Carolina lawmakers wrangle over their budget plan this month. But as House leaders approved their spending plan last week and Senate budget chiefs prepared to unveil their proposals this week, one thing is clear, according to the state’s public school advocates: The virtual charters, besieged by high dropout rates and nationwide concerns about poor academic performance, are bound for relaxed regulations in North Carolina anyway.

...

Feds to issue new rules on “payday” and “car title” lending; Here’s why North Carolinians should be paying very close attention

North Carolinians can be forgiven if they haven’t thought a lot about the predatory “payday lending” business in recent years. Indeed, it was one of the great accomplishments of our state government in the early part of the last decade when it officially ended North Carolina’s four-year experiment with the business and made these inherently predatory loans illegal. The last of the payday shops was chased out of the state in 2006. Since that time, there have been periodic efforts to bring the practice back into North Carolina, but consumer advocates have repeatedly succeeded in beating them back.

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