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Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

(AP) - Opelousas police say a man whose body was found in a car on Interstate 49 apparently shot his windshield, then himself.Police had said Monday that they could not immediately determine the cause of death.

Chief Perry Gallow said Tuesday that an autopsy found that the 28-year-old man killed himself in a traffic lane. He says the black Hyundai apparently was later hit from behind by an unsuspecting driver.

The Daily World reported three bullet holes in the car's windshield. A photograph shows the message "SLOW DOWN!!" in large white letters across the car's rear window.

Police say the car was found after several motorists called, starting about 6:40 a.m. Monday. It was on a little-used ramp to a road that ends just east of the interstate.

(AP) - Louisiana's public schools are starting a three-year shift to more rigorous testing of public school students, using a set of uniform standards designed to better prepare students for college and careers.

The transition will change what items are included in the standardized tests given to students each spring, which will change how teachers instruct their students.

Louisiana is joining 47 other states in moving to the "Common Core" standards, which were developed by states seeking to have a set of uninform benchmarks for what students should learn by graduation.

Superintendent of Education John White says they will be fully phased into Louisiana's curriculum and testing by the 2014-15 school year.

The implications are widespread, since student performance on standardized tests is used to judge school performance and to evaluate teachers.

(AP) - More than 50 southwest Louisiana parade groups will usher in the Carnival season with a Jan. 6 parade led by last year's royal courts.

The American Press reports that the new Twelfth Night Parade will be inside the Lake Charles Civic Center. Admission is $5 to $6.

Katie Harrington, president of Mardi Gras of Southwest Louisiana, says the parade is the biggest change in the season, which begins on Twelfth Night - Jan. 6 - and ends on Fat Tuesday - Feb. 12.

Her group and the Lake Charles/Southwest Louisiana Convention and Visitor's Bureau held a news conference recently about the season.

As well as parades, area events include gumbo-cook-offs, a food festival, morning house-to-house rides for gumbo ingredients and a park parade of costumed dogs.


(AP) - Local lawyer Glenn Armentor has donated $10,000 to set up a scholarship fund at South Louisiana Community College.

The Advocate reports the donation will provide financial help to students interested in attending any of the college's campuses.

The community college merged with the regional technical college campuses, formerly known as the Acadiana Technical College, on July 1.

The donation established the SLCC Glenn Armentor Pay-It-Forward Scholarship of Excellence and has the potential to cover the tuition for four students, according to the college.

(AP) - Natalie Howell has been named undersecretary in the Louisiana Department of Revenue.

She will oversee the department's offices of management and finance, support services and internal audit.

Howell formerly was with the Louisiana Workers' Compensation Corp. in Baton Rouge, where she served as vice president of accounting.

She holds a master's degree from Louisiana State University and is a certified public accountant.

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