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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 29, 2014 | By Hannah Fry and Joe Mozingo
Over the years, Corona del Mar High School has earned a reputation as one of the state's top public schools. Living in a seaside enclave of quaint old homes and cliff-top mansions, the school's students benefit from private tutors and their parents expect them to go on to elite universities. But in recent weeks the school's sterling record has been shaken by an ugly cheating scandal. And, on Wednesday, 11 students were expelled. School officials say that a tutor who worked with some of the students masterminded a scheme in which students obtained the passwords and log-on information of teachers and hacked into the district computer system to change grades and access exams.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 29, 2014 | By Hannah Fry
The mother of a Corona del Mar High School student expelled in a grade-hacking scandal warned district officials of a widespread "culture of cheating" at the high-performing school.  Newport-Mesa Unified School District trustees announced early Wednesday they had voted to expel 11 students after they allegedly hacked into  the district's computer system to change grades and access exams. Some parents warned that as many as 150 students could be implicated in the cheating, but haven't been investigated.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 29, 2014 | By Hannah Fry
Eleven students at Corona del Mar High School were expelled Tuesday in connection with a cheating scandal that has rocked the high-performing Orange County campus.  School officials allege that the students hacked into the district's computer system to change grades and access exams. Newport-Mesa Unified School District trustees reached the decision early Wednesday after lengthy closed-door discussions. In a statement, board President Karen Yelsey said the decision to expel the students from the school  -- the most severe penalty being considered -- follows the recommendations made by the school principal and district administration.
SCIENCE
January 23, 2014 | By Amina Khan
Old rovers can indeed learn new tricks. Rolling into its 10th anniversary on the Red Planet, Opportunity has discovered clay minerals showing that life-friendly water flowed on Mars in the earliest epoch of its history. The findings indicate that Curiosity's groundbreaking discovery last year of clays capable of hosting microbes like those on Earth was no fluke, experts said. “We've basically found strong evidence for clays on both sides of the planet,” said Cornell University planetary scientist Steve Squyres, lead scientist for NASA's Mars Exploration Rover program and coauthor of a report published in Friday's edition of the journal Science.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 21, 2014 | By Matt Stevens
Lane closures along a 1.9-mile stretch of Mar Vista and Sawtelle began Tuesday and are expected to continue for months as the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power constructs an underground high-voltage power line. Lane closures are expected on sections of Bundy Drive and Centinela Avenue south of the 10 Freeway and north of Venice Boulevard. The closures will take place between 9 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. on weekdays, LADWP officials said in a news release said. The department said the excavation work would involve installing trenches, underground maintenance vaults and infrastructure improvements.
SCIENCE
January 15, 2014 | By Amina Khan
Congressional negotiators released a $1.1-trillion omnibus spending bill for the 2014 fiscal year that's more generous to NASA's scientific endeavors than the White House's proposal, but it may be too soon to celebrate, officials said this week. The massive federal spending bill would give NASA's planetary science division $1.345 billion -- $127 million more than the White House budget request, reflecting a commitment in Congress to space exploration, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank)
ENTERTAINMENT
January 15, 2014 | By Gerrick D. Kennedy
After bringing his shimmering brand of old-school pizazz to the Super Bowl, Bruno Mars will head back out on the road. The performer will launch the next leg of his current Moonshine Jungle tour with a 40-date trek across North America. Pharrell , who coolly ruled 2013 and has a slot at Coachella this year, is s et to support Mars on a handful of dates. Aloe Blacc , whose star power go t a jolt of lightning courtesy of Avicii's “Wake Me Up,” will largely support Mars on the road.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 15, 2014 | By Jessica Gelt
The "Veronica Mars" resurgence shows no signs of slowing down. The CW President Mark Pedowitz announced on Wednesday that a digital spinoff series is in the works for the network's online-only platform, CW Seed. "Veronica Mars" creator Rob Thomas' hugely successful Kickstarter campaign to make a "Veronica Mars" movie certainly got the network's attention, Pedowitz acknowledged during a session at the Television Critics Assn. press tour in Pasadena.  "Rob and I spoke last night," Pedowitz said.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 9, 2014 | By Gina McIntyre
Jon Favreau's restaurant comedy “Chef,” Rob Thomas' crowd-funded “Veronica Mars” movie and a documentary about zombies in film and popular culture will premiere at the 21st edition of the South by Southwest Film Conference and Festival in Austin, Texas, organizers announced Thursday. The festival, which runs March 7-15, also will host an event with prominent physicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, who will discuss his new Fox series “Cosmos,” as well as an hourlong conversation with surrealist filmmaker Alejandro Jodorowsky.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 8, 2014 | By Robin Abcarian, This post has been updated, as indicated below.
That sound you're hearing is the air going out of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's 2016 Republican presidential aspirations, thanks to the scandal known as Bridgegate. We've always known that Christie, a former federal prosecutor, has a temper. He can be nasty and combative -- particularly when it comes to entrenched liberal interests like labor unions -- and, frankly, that's what a whole lot of Republicans like about him. (His temper is also beloved by Democrats who believe his explosive tendencies are their best secret weapon against him.)
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