March 11th, 2010
09:18 AM ET

On the Radar: Missouri schools, tornadoes, Iraq vote

The Kansas City, Missouri, school board has voted to close 28 of the district's 61 schools.

Here’s a look at some of the stories reporters are working on Thursday:

Missouri school closings - Superintendent John Covington called for the closing or consolidation of almost half of Kansas City, Missouri's public schools as part of his "Right Size" plan. A divided Kansas City Board of Education voted Wednesday night to approve the downsizing as parents pleaded and children cried.

A Thursday morning news conference is set to discuss the decision. We follow the story and the latest from CNN affiliate KSHB-TV and look at what implications the decision may have and whether other states will follow Missouri's path. This development and a Rhode Island high school's recent firing of all its teachers raise these questions: How can the failing schools be saved, and what is the best way to do it?

Extreme weather - A vigorous storm system blasted eastern Arkansas and northern Louisiana on Wednesday night and shifted into southeastern Missouri, southern Illinois, western Kentucky, western Tennessee, Mississippi and Alabama overnight.

Early Thursday a tornado watch was lifted for Arkansas after a series of powerful tornadoes ripped through dozens of homes, critically injuring two people. We follow the system's development Thursday and how it may affect travel.

Iraq elections - Iraq’s Independent High Electoral Commission is expected to announce partial results of last week’s vote Thursday after postponing a press conference the day before. Election officials said earlier they were taking their time for accuracy.

Even if some announcement comes, it may be some time before a clear picture emerges on who will lead Iraq and if Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki will stay in power. Final results are expected to be certified at the end of the month.

Obama export initiative - President Obama on Thursday will announce new details of his free trade agenda intended to bring economic growth at the Export-Import Bank's annual conference at 11:15 a.m. Thursday, a White House official said.

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Filed under: Economy • Iraq • Jobs • On the Radar • World
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