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Photo by Flickr user Karen Eliot.

Last week, Illinois State Police got the federal approval to use what they call “unmanned aircrafts” during police operations. By “unmanned aircrafts,” of course, they mean, “drones,” but they don’t want use that word because “it carries the perception of pre-programmed or automatic flight patterns and random, indiscriminate collection of images and information.”

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Edible Dictionary: Chicago, the City Named for Ramps

What the smell of spring has to do with a wild plant that inspired the name of the Midwest's largest city.

Chicago, n.
Pronunciation: ʃɪkɑgəʊ

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Rahm's Not a Resident, Says Illinois Appellate Court

Turns out, moving to Washington D.C. for over a year doesn't a Chicago resident make.


An Illinois appellate court ruled Monday that Chicago mayoral candidate and former White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel does not meet state municipal residency requirements for mayor. Emanuel, who served the Obama administration in Washington, D.C., from early 2009 until October (when Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley announced he would not run for yet another re-election) was ruled against for not having "resided in" Chicago during the year preceding the upcoming election February 22.

This decision overturns the Chicago Board of Elections' unanimous decision in December approving his candidacy. The Board of Elections quickly placed an order today for 2 million Emanuel-free ballots. Emanuel's campaign has requested a stay on the appellate court's ruling with the Illinois Supreme court and has further requested that his name remain on ballot. Should Emanuel, who was congressional representative for Chicago's northside for six years, be penalized for his time at the White House? Jury's still out, but for now, opponents of Emanuel (and his plan for Chicago's public education) are looking at a much friendlier ballot for the start of early voting, January 31.

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Results at Arne Duncan's First Chicago Turnaround School Raise Efficacy and Legal Questions

Arne Duncan believes in "turnaround" schools, but are they effective, and are they legal?

Does Secretary of Education Arne Duncan's "turnaround" school-reform model work? News from one of Duncan's first turnaround schools, William T. Sherman Elementary in Chicago, is mixed. Yes, test scores are up, and that's a good thing for the 591-student elementary in the city's violence-plagued Englewood neighborhood. The bad news? It took five years to see results, and the scores still aren't as high as the average Chicago public school.

Duncan ordered a turnaround plan for Sherman back in 2006 when he was still Chicago's superintendent of schools. Sherman was the first campus placed under the jurisdiction of what was at the time a new non-profit turnaround organization, the Academy for Urban School Leadership. As an AUSL turnaround school, Sherman gave students renovated facilities, a new curriculum, and an entirely new staff—new principals, new teachers, even new custodians.

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