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ECSA: Indonesia’s New Shipping Law Raises Concerns

first_imgEuropean shipowners expressed their concern over the recently adopted decree on maritime transportation of certain goods in Indonesia.As promulgated on October 31, 2017, and entering into force 6 months from that day, the new law imposes that commodities, coal, crude palm oil, rice and goods for government procurement, can only be transported for import or export by national maritime transport companies.European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ECSA) said that the new law is “a clear measure of protectionism and will impact seriously European shipping companies that have longstanding access to this market.”European shipowners stressed that this decree goes against fundamental principles of free trade.“In a time when the EU and Indonesia are negotiating on a free trade agreement the adoption by the Indonesian authorities of such a law is unacceptable,” Martin Dorsman, ECSA’s Secretary General, said.ECSA therefore called upon the EU to approach the Indonesian authorities in order to have this law taken off the table, and to ensure inclusion of strong principles on maritime transport services in any future free trade agreement with Indonesia that will avoid any of such rules to re-emerge.“In view of this week’s bilateral trade talks we have passed our concerns on to the European Commission and hope they will see a chance to question their Indonesian counterparts on this matter,” Dorsman added.last_img read more

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Abbey ends on high note with Southern Challenge checkers

first_imgABILENE, Texas (Oct. 18) – After putting his Xtreme Motor Sports IMCA Modified in victory lane, Dean Abbey put $3,000 in the bank.Abbey took the lead from Josh McGaha after midway at Abilene Speedway’s Ryan Bard Memo­rial Southern Challenge and led to the end of the Sunday headliner.He’d started the 30-lapper from inside row two.“We knew we had a good car. I just tried to stay close to him (McGaha),” Abbey said. “He was good but he finally slid up just high enough and left me enough room to get by.”After a complete restart, the race saw just one caution. Abbey had one lapped car behind him and was coming up on another coming to the checkers.McGaha, a former race winner and now four-time track champion at Abilene, was the runner-up. Charles Brewer, Chris Elliott and Fred Wojtek completed the top five.“We wanted to end our Modified season on a high note,” said Abbey, who’d won the Southern SportMod feature at Abilene in 2011 and is already on the Fast Shafts All-Star Invitational ballot for next year. “This was a great way to do it.”Other winners at the 21st annual event were Steve Whiteaker in the Scoggin-Dickey Parts Center Southern SportMods, Matt Guillaume in the IMCA Sunoco Stock Cars and Andy Roller in the IMCA Sunoco Hobby Stocks.Making his first competitive visit to Abilene and the Southern Challenge, Whiteaker started from the pole and led every time around the track in the 30-lap Southern SportMod main.“You couldn’t get a better or luckier weekend that we had. Everything went just right for us,” he said following the $2,500 feature win.Piloting a Steve Hayes-owned ride, he’d won his Friday heat race from fourth starting, then drew the pole and topped the qualifying feature despite late contact with a lapped car.Cautions kept slower cars from becoming a factor in the main event. Whiteaker beat G.W. Egbert IV to the stripe by four car lengths in a green, white, checkered finish.Scored next were Justin Shaw, Dustin Robinson and Shane Priddy.Another driver enjoying late-season success, Guillaume had run second most of the way and was in the right place in the right time when leader Dillon Smith lost the handle on the final turnThe Southern Challenge runner-up each of the last two years, Guillaume was quick to capitalize and pocketed $2,000.David Phillips and Dennis Bissonnette also drove by. Smith ended in fourth and J.C. Howell was fifth.“It was kind of a lackluster weekend for us until the last 200 feet or so,” Guillaume said. “I felt bad for Dillon. We were just able to take advantage when it happened.”Roller recorded his career third and second straight Southern Challenge Hobby Stock victory. He passed Tommy Phillips for the lead on lap six and beat Michael Maraschick to the finish by a cou­ple car lengths following a late restart.“Winning the Southern Challenge never gets old. The first time (2011) was my first win in a big race so that was special,” he said. “The Southern Challenge is the hardest event to win in Texas.”Roller earned $1,000. Phillips, Kade Ogle and Eddie Ledbetter were third through fifth, respec­tively.Modifieds ­–­  1. Dean Abbey; 2. Josh McGaha; 3. Charles Brewer; 4. Chris Elliott; 5. Fred Wojtek; 6. Kelly Allen; 7. Vince Ogle; 8. Danny Hogue; 9. Pat McGuire; 10. Danny Patterson; 11. Robby Edwards; 12. Donald Banker; 13. Mike McCarthy; 14. John Gober; 15. Justin Cass; 16. Neal DeBord; 17. Eric Hughes; 18. Joe Spillman; 19. Jason Batt; 20. Tommy Fain. Southern SportMods –  1. Steve Whiteaker; 2. G.W. Egbert IV; 3. Justin Shaw; 4. Dustin Robin­son; 5. Shane Priddy; 6. Bradley Poor; 7. Robby Carter; 8. Douglas Gillespie; 9. Shane Hoefling; 10. Doug Easterling; 11. Robert Crabtree III; 12. Tyler Fain; 13. Kenneth Graves; 14. Robert Scrivner; 15. Kyle Wisdom; 16. Jeffrey Abbey; 17. Rodger Pierce; 18. Allen Montgomery; 19. Steve Hayes; 20. J.C. Howell.Stock Cars –  1. Matt Guillaume; 2. David Phillips; 3. Dennis Bissonnette; 4. Dillon Smith; 5. J.C. Howell; 6. Robert Barnett Sr.; 7. Travis Sutherlin; 8. Cary White; 9. Billy Wade; 10. Tyler Muir­head; 11. Allen Bradley; 12. Kirk Martin; 13. Brandon Hertel; 14. Michael Tennison; 15. Westin Abbey; 16. Mike Easterwood; 17. Joe Spillman; 18. Bud Ohliger; 19. Jason Batt; 20. Jordan Lath­ram. Hobby Stocks –  1. Andy Roller; 2. Michael Maraschick; 3. Tommy Phillips; 4. Kade Ogle; 5. Ed­die Ledbetter; 6. Gerald Spalding Sr.; 7. Gerald Spalding Jr.; 8. Ashton Hayes; 9. Donald Phillips; 10. Michaela Scott; 11. Jamie Herring; 12. Rodney Sparks; 13. Vavette MacCarthy; 14. Wayne Chadwell; 15. Jeremy Oliver.last_img read more

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EPL: Salah fires Liverpool 19 points clear

first_imgRelatedPosts Lampard: I still have confidence in Tomori Mane double eases Liverpool to win over 10-man Chelsea EPL: Chelsea, Liverpool in cagey duel Liverpool surged 19 points clear at the top of the Premier League after easing to a 2-0 win at West Ham courtesy of goals from Mohamed Salah and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. Jurgen Klopp’s side were serenaded with chants of “we’re gonna win the league” in the final minutes, an assessment it is virtually impossible to argue against as the Reds asserted their superiority in typically ruthless fashion to extend their lead over Manchester City. West Ham stuck at their task well enough but were outclassed and David Moyes will need to rally his troops quickly as they sit above the relegation zone on goal difference ahead of Saturday’s crucial battle with fellow-strugglers Brighton. Roberto Firmino and Salah combined to release Andrew Robertson for Liverpool’s first clear chance but the left-back could only lift a weak shot over Lukasz Fabianski which Diop mopped up as it drifted wide. He was just assured just after the half-hour mark. Trent Alexander-Arnold whipped a cross into Firmino, whose first touch was sublime. The Brazilian found Origi with a square ball in the box and as he wriggled to turn goalwards eight yards out, Diop chopped him down. Salah made no mistake from 12 yards, firing low to Fabianksi’s left as he dived the other way. West Ham missed an excellent chance to draw level less than five minutes into the second period as Robert Snodgrass fed Declan Rice, who crossed for Lanzini. The 26-year-old was unmarked in the middle of the penalty area but only managed a tame effort which barely reached Alisson. The Hammers then had a corner shortly afterwards as they attempted to generate momentum but instead they conceded a second goal. Virgil Van Dijk headed the ball away and as Mark Noble let the ball bounce, Masuaku wasn’t strong enough on Salah and suddenly the break was on as Henderson released the Egyptian. With the outside of his left foot, Salah bent a superb pass in behind the Hammers defence and Oxlade-Chamberlain showed strength to bounce off Lanzini before steering a shot past Fabianski. Snodgrass almost replied instantly with a snapshot after Georginio Wijnaldum gifted possession to Lanzini but the Scotland international’s effort was turned behind by Alisson, low to his right. Lanzini’s night ended in unedifying fashion as cheers from a sizeable number of home fans greeted his 69th-minute substitution and they almost had something more positive to shout about when Rice’s shot was beaten away by Alisson. Alexander-Arnold tried to react to the rebound but only succeeding in diverting the ball back past his goalkeeper and off his right-hand upright. Salah hit the post at the other end as Liverpool sought to add further gloss to the scoreline but instead they had to settle for a two-goal margin that only makes their first title win in 30 years all the more inevitable.Tags: Alex Oxlade-ChamberlainJurgen KloppLiverpoolMohamed SalahWest Hamlast_img read more

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Egypt’s Salah to miss qualifiers, out for six weeks

first_imgEgypt and AS Roma winger Mohamed Salah will be out for roughly six weeks following an injury he sustained over the past weekend.According to a statement released by the club, the Pharaohs winger underwent medical tests on Monday after he was forced off in the 58th minute on Sunday night against Lazio.“The tests revealed that Salah has sustained Grade II ligament damage to his right ankle,” reads the statement from the club’s website.“It is expected that the Giallorossi No. 11, who has made 11 league appearances for Roma so far this season and is the club’s third-highest scorer with six goals in all competitions, will be out for between four and six weeks.”Salah was called up for Egypt’s coach Hector Cuper for their 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifier against Chad, however, he has since been replaced by Zamalek’s Mostafa Fathi. Roma had Salah carried off in the second half after Senad Lulic’s challenge caught his ankle. “We just hope there’s no break,” said Garcia. “Tackles like that don’t belong, not even in the derby. We need to protect the players and keep them safe.–Follow Joy Sports on Twitter: @Joy997FM. Our hashtag is #JoySportslast_img read more

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Intelligent Design Found in DNA

first_imgReaders of this headline may say it is not news to say that intelligent design has been found in DNA.  Others may be ready for a fight on that issue.  But in this case, the design has been verified beyond any shadow of doubt.  The designers are not who you may be suspecting.  They are researchers at Brigham Young University, who spelled out BYU using strands of DNA.  Readers can see for themselves in an article on Live Science.OK, maybe this was a setup, but it’s a teachable moment.  Let’s continue the line of reasoning to see “where the evidence leads.”  No question here – the letters were arranged to spell the university acronym because of a purposeful, intelligent plan.  We even know the names and identities of the designers.  OK so far?  Now, let us ask: did they intervene in nature?  Well, presumably so.  But did they use miracles?  No; they manipulated existing natural particles and forces to achieve the end they desired.    All right then, was it necessary to know the identities of the designers?  No; anyone could see at a glance the arrangement of letters matched an independent specifiable pattern (and that it was not just happenstance the letters were found on the campus of BYU).  But even in this simple case, the complexity of the result lies far below the universal probability bound.  Remember the guy that photographed all the letters of the English alphabet in butterfly wings? (see Daily Mail).  Somewhere, in some lab, a researcher might happen upon a random arrangement of DNA strands spelling out BYU.  Already, though, it would take more faith to believe that than to believe this case was a result of intelligent design – even if one did not have the backstory explaining how it was done.    With that in mind, let’s extend the logic further.  Say that instead of arranging DNA into the shapes of BYU, the researchers used the familiar nucleotide bases of DNA (A, C, T, G) and made up a code that could represent any letter of the alphabet (AAA might represent the letter A, AAC=B, AAT=C, AAG=D, or something like that).  Then they show their product as an ordinary-looking DNA strand that spells out BYU in code.  It might be harder to detect without being shown, but those of us with background knowledge still know it was done by design.  A scientist might crack the code without the background knowledge and discover the phrase “Brigham Young University” spelled out.  Even without knowing the designers, such a discovery would almost certainly be recognized as the result of intelligent causes, not chance (see PhysOrg for an actual case where a scientist stored information in the DNA code of living bacteria).    Next, imagine that the researchers designed something more subtle.  They built a gene by sequencing ordinary-looking DNA, that would be translated by the ordinary processes of gene transcription and translation, that would come out of the ribosome as a string of amino acids that spontaneously folds into the letters BYU.  Now we’re talking some pretty heavy-duty design.  It would probably astonish other biochemists.  Would it be any less praiseworthy if the researchers sequenced DNA to perform a function?  Just spelling out one’s alma mater is kid stuff; they would want to do something useful.  They design a gene to produce a cancer-fighting drug.  All this, we know in our developing story, is the work of intelligent design.    Now imagine a designer putting together a whole suit of enzymes into systems, such that it builds a cell that grows into a whole organism.  The organism grows, develops, walks upright, and joins with fellow organisms to build a university, whose scientists play with the building blocks of which they are comprised to spell out the acronym of their institution.  Oh – that can be explained by chance and natural selection.  Don’t give us any of that interventionist, religious stuff!  What are you trying to do, bring science to a stop?(Visited 12 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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MTN deal boosts online content

first_imgMEDIA CONTACTS • Maphamola Lebelo MTN Group Communications +27 83 212 9918 • Eleanor Filgate or K Simon Babel PR +44 (0) 20 7434 5550RELATED ARTICLES • Naspers makes moves in Brazil • SA, US tighten trade relationshipBongani NkosiMTN, one of Africa’s leading cellular networks, has partnered with an Indian software and services provider to boost digital content for its 103-million users worldwide.The deal, that will see MTN enlisting the services of India-based firm IMImobile to manage the content for its clients’ cellphones, was announced on 2 October 2009.IMImobile was a favourable choice as it’s linked to 350 content providers globally.The two companies have teamed up to address the growing demand for content in emerging markets, according to MTN.The partnership will help MTN provide popular content – such as local and international music, sports, games, news and other entertainment – through enhanced technology.“We have found a partner in IMImobile that has the insight and expertise of the appropriate managed service business model and technology solution to continue to deliver premium content and services to our customers,” said Nozipho January-Bardill, MTN group corporate affairs executive.The deal will also enable MTN launch new income-generating voice and data services.Strategic partner of choiceIMImobile was selected from a group of major global telecom software and service providers because of its technology platforms and proven managed services business model, MTN said. The group is in direct competition to industry giants like Ericsson, Huawei and Nokia Siemens, which offer similar technology and services to operators.“To be chosen by MTN as their strategic partner ahead of a strong list of competitors is testament to our unique service which is based on industry-leading technology platforms, content management expertise, managed services … combined with 24/7 technical support …” IMImobile founder and CEO Vishwanath Alluri said.“IMImobile’s value proposition and technology solutions will enable MTN to reduce the time-to-market for new services, boost Average Revenue Per User and keep MTN at the forefront of innovative services,” January-Bardill said.MTN introduced a number of products and services during the Fifa Confederations Cup in June 2009. “This content is currently being archived to allow football fans to relive the moment long after the games,” the operator said.Content streaming of the 2010 Fifa World Cup is one of MTN’s largest projects, as it has exclusive global mobile content rights for Africa and the Middle East. The MTN-IMImobile partnership will be instrumental in delivering exclusive World Cup content on subscribers’ handsets, including soccer match news, fixtures, match results as well as team and group profiles, MTN said. Through the partnership IMImobile will use its Service Delivery Platform, which will include its DaVinci Content Management System (CMS), to tailor content for local consumer preferences. An example of this would be providing material in French or Arabic.IMImobile will deploy its full CMS across Botswana, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, South Africa, Swaziland, Uganda, Zambia, Benin, Guinea Bissau, Guinea Republic Conakry, Liberia, Afghanistan, Syria, Cyprus and Yemen.“This is a major commercial milestone for IMImobile as we continue to build our offering to support leading operators worldwide,” said Alluri. “We are excited by the opportunity and are looking forward to helping MTN achieve its objectives of creating substantial additional revenue streams.”MTN is a multinational group that was founded in South Africa in 1994. It is listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, Africa’s largest stock exchange, and operates in 21 countries across the world.IMImobile positions itself as a “leading provider of converged mobile and online technology platforms and content services to mobile operators and media companies around the world”. It lists leading operators and media companies such as Vodafone, Virgin Mobile, Google, Reuters, Airtel and Yahoo! as some of its customers. It has operations in 40 countries and offices in Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East.last_img read more

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Egypt’s Facebook Police Target Protesters Facebook Page

first_imgIn an earlier post, our French editor, Fabrice Epelboin, detailed his discovery that the crew that had harassed our French edition‘s Facebook page, was in fact a squad of Tunisian Internet cops. These days, official groups and allied militia, frequently attack dissidents. It has now happened in Egypt. The most important Facebook page for the protests is being flooded with abusive comments and criticism. In September, we wrote about the creation and activity of the Egyptian government’s Facebook cops. They were created because Egypt’s young people have frequently used Facebook as an organizing and informational tool. The 6th of April Youth Movement grew on Facebook and the current uprising was organized in part by the We Are Khaled Said Facebook page. As Evgeny Morozov points out in his new book The Net Delusion (review upcoming) tyrannical regimes – well any regime actually – have come to utilize social media as a tool of oppression as much as the oppressed use it as a tool for liberty. Egypt is no exception to this rule. In fact, one wonders if the Egyptian government turned the Internet back on specifically to allow its online security forces to operate. The “Facebook cops” have targeted the We Are Khaled Said page – one of the best resources for information on the protests. It has both an Arabic and an English version, giving it tremendous reach inside and outside the country. Most of the trolling has happened on the Arabic version. It is, I admit, surmise that this special security department is behind the flooding of the page with filth, violent comments and faux hand-wringing. But it seems pretty likely. No doubt the online version of the “militia” types that Tahrir Square has seen beating protesters and journalists are among the commenters. Wired listed these as some of the comments, a lot of which come from accounts with virtually no personal information. “God forgive (the administrator, probably) he spread fitna [division] and wants to burn the country, God is my refuge. We are all against him. Send it to each other so we can rid ourselves of him and his poisons.”“This motherfucking group wants to ruin the country.”“You ruined Egypt you dogs and enemies of Egypt. All your lives you have felt inadequate when compared to us… Egypt is above you all and that is God’s promise. Long live Pharaonic Egypt.”Facebook Should Stand with the Protesters and Against the Facebook CopsDespite the fact that dissidents and concerned citizens in general in a host of countries, many in North Africa, have used Facebook as a way to register their hopes, fears, hurt and anger at their leaders, Facebook itself has remained unmoved. In another life, I suggested that Facebook has a responsibility to its users, those who put that “cool” billion dollars in their pockets, to stand with them. By this I do not mean that Facebook, a private company, should take partisan political stances or that it should even take sides in a conflict like that which happened in Tunisia or is currently working itself out in Egypt. If I owned such a company I would do no such thing. But taking a stand on behalf of its users to say that they should be free to speak to each other, to speak their conscience, to speak their loves and sorrows, without winding up on the wrong end of a hose or a lead pipe or broken broom handle or even just a locked door is not a “political” stance, it is a human one, just as free speech itself is not a cultural or political right, but a human one. Facebook has a tremendously loud voice. It could make a world of difference. Let Mr. Zuckerberg stand up and say, “We stand with our users. We insist that the marketplace of ideas be allowed to work with as little interference as the financial marketplace in which Facebook makes its money.” What would such a stance cost Facebook? Money? I think not. As intelligent as Mr. Zuckerberg is, he is young. When a cadre of severe attorneys who look like your mom and dad tell you to quiet down or you’ll ruin everything, perhaps your knees bend from sheer sense-memory. But Mr. Zuckerberg is a grown-up now; a very wealthy, very influential grown up. Should he get up off his knees it could give a second wind to those who seek merely to speak without paying the ultimate price. Tags:#international#politics#web Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img Related Posts curt hopkins 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

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Success: Your Scoreboard Always Tells You the Full Truth

first_imgThe score you see written on the scoreboard is always accurate. It will never protect your feelings, nor does it have the power to change the score it presents to you. Your scoreboard only tells you the full truth.About Your Theories and BeliefsYou might believe with all your heart that you should be able to generate a result in a certain. The theory you have about what is necessary to create the result seems perfectly reasonable to you. But the results are not forthcoming. Instead, you languish without the desired effect, stubbornly clinging to your theories and your beliefs.It is early in the morning, and you are facing West, watching for the Sun to rise.The scoreboard will tell you that your beliefs and your theories are incorrect. If you want to change the score, you have to change your beliefs and assumptions that don’t produce the result you want. If you don’t change your expectations and your theories about how things work, you are not growing. Growing is necessary for you to improve your score.About Your EffortYour theories and beliefs are accurate. You are still not producing the result you want, as indicated by the scoreboard. The scoreboard may be telling you that you are not putting forth enough effort to improve your outcomes. Your work ethic is one of the variables of success that is wholly within your control.You want the better result, but you also want to sleep for twenty-seven more minutes, and so you hit the snooze button three times. You want to focus on your priorities, but instead of doing the work, you stare blankly at your computer screen.Your scoreboard is of no help to you. It doesn’t recognize your good intentions as being worthy of an increase to the score. The scoreboard is detached, impartial, and clinical, only reflecting your actual results—or your lack thereof. Should you want a better result, it will require effort, and likely more than you think.About Your StrategiesThe way you go about something, your strategy, maybe wildly different than someone else’s. But one of you might produce a much more significant result while the other produces no result at all. Whether the strategy works or not is of no concern to the scoreboard.Your strategy is to rely solely on inbound marketing to reach your goals, no cold outreach. Your plan for making more money is to get rich on the internet, executed by your buying get rich on the internet programs from people who only got rich by selling get rich quick schemes on the internet.Your scoreboard doesn’t judge you (or the people who sell picks and shovels outside the gold mine). It’s a completely neutral party. While I am rooting for you (and so is your Mom), the scoreboard isn’t. If it doesn’t see results, it refuses to change. If you want the score to improve, you may have to change your strategy.About Your ExecutionSo your beliefs and theories are excellent and correct. You are putting forth the effort. And your strategy is a proven recipe that countless people before you have used to find success and run up the score. The scoreboard, however, has not changed. You believe it isn’t giving you the score you deserve. To put up points, you have to execute.You are mostly doing what other people to produce the result you want, but your execution is poor. It could be that you need more time to improve your competency, or it could be that you are trying to cheat by taking shortcuts, avoiding the difficult but necessary components of execution. The recipe is well-known, but you are not using the ingredients as prescribed.The scoreboard knows excellent execution when it sees it. When everything is done right and produces a result, it changes the score. When it is done poorly and fails to provide the result, it refuses to change. If you want the scoreboard to reflect a better rating, you have to execute well enough to produce the result.About the Fact That You Need to ChangeThe scoreboard will tell you that you need to change. It will tell you that your score isn’t what you want it to be, and it will also provide you with an indication as to how others are doing as a comparison. It is the most neutral of all parties, never blaming you or criticizing you. It merely reflects the score.By providing you with your score, it gives an objective view of how you are doing. Maybe you are happy with your score. But if you are not pleased by the score it provides, you are getting feedback that what you’re doing isn’t working and that you need to change. The game doesn’t change for you because it doesn’t change for anybody.If you want the scoreboard to change, you have to go first. It will not change unless and until you change. This is true when what got you to this point is inadequate for the improved score you want now. The higher the score, the more you are going to have to do to produce the result. The result is the only thing the scoreboard measures.The Truth About Your FutureThe scoreboard tells the truth about your future. It shows you where you are now, and it provides a glimpse of your trajectory. You can see your direction and your velocity.Your score is not immutable; you have the power to change the score, change your trajectory, and change your velocity. You are capable of pulling results forward in time, but you can just easily push them into the future, a future that is moving towards you faster than you might imagine.It is within your power to change the score. But your scoreboard is only capable of telling the truth. If you want it to show a better result, you have to provide it with the better result you want it to reflect. Essential Reading! Get my first book: The Only Sale Guide You’ll Ever Need “The USA Today bestseller by the star sales speaker and author of The Sales Blog that reveals how all salespeople can attain huge sales success through strategies backed by extensive research and experience.” Buy Nowlast_img read more

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Bus Service for Students to be Expanded

first_imgThe Ministry of Education, Youth and Information has committed $380 million for the roll-out of the Expanded Pilot Rural Transportation Project for the 2018/19 academic year.The Ministry committed $200 million for implementation of the first year of the programme in 2017.Now in its second year, the programme is being implemented in the rural sections of 12 parishes, excluding Kingston and St. Andrew.Speaking with JIS News during the first in a series of islandwide Parent Sensitisation Sessions organised by the Ministry, Coordinator at the Ministry of Education’s Safety and Security in Schools Unit with responsibility for the Project, Richard Troupe, said approximately 7,500 children on the Programme of Advancement through Health and Education (PATH) are to benefit from the programme.“For this year, we will be impacting 260 schools across 12 parishes. In our first year, our effort was 92 schools. This year, we are also focusing, in a big way, on primary schools, especially in the parishes of St. Mary and St. Ann,” the Minister said.These are students who have demonstrated strong interest in school and experienced difficulty getting to school due to high transportation costs.The programme is also open to schools identifying children with special needs for consideration. These children do not have to be on PATH.At the high school level, allocation for children is $300 per day, while primary school students are allocated $200 per day.Mr. Troupe said participating primary and secondary schools are now in the process of selecting children for the programme.“In some cases, it covers the full cost for the child’s transportation from home to school. In other cases, it provides a subsidy. At the high school level, it suggests that it is providing support of $57,000 for the year for the child, because it is for the entire school year (38 weeks) that we will provide this support,” he said.Mr. Troupe said where the cost of transportation is greater than the commitment made by the Ministry, parents will be required to pay the balance of the cost.Additionally, this year, the Ministry through select schools will be partnering with registered route taxis and bus operators to provide transport services for children living in these rural areas who experience difficulties accessing public transportation.This strategy, he said, will introduce diverse and increased transportation options for students within the sector.“One of the challenges we faced last year was the difficulty sometimes of finding a 15 or 13 (seat) bus to go into a remote district, so there were some children who would have been disadvantaged, because we could not find the capacity vehicle to go there. For the 2018/19 academic year, the Minister has agreed to have route taxis as part of the menu of service providers. So this year, we will have route taxis and bus operators that we have contracted,” he said.Mr. Troupe explained that schools are tasked with identifying route operators within the locale of the school that are of good repute.Service providers must meet several strict standards, including vehicles that are in good working order and are registered as public passenger vehicles.“The fact that we have been able to include in the fleet of transportation options now, route taxis, will make it possible for deep rural schools to come fully on board, because they do not have to rely on the bigger vehicles to be part of this initiative,” Mr. Troupe said.He said the Ministry maintains its partnership with the Jamaica Urban Transit Company (JUTC) to deliver its school bus service to three major corridors in sections of Clarendon as well as with Montego Bay Metro Company Limited at the western end of the island.“The Ministry’s role is to standardise the programme to ensure that, even though there might be unique peculiarities in some parishes caused by issues like terrain, we are not compromising the quality and standard of the programme. It is rooted in the Safety and Security Unit, because this particular programme, in addition to providing access for children on PATH to education, it is about ensuring access to education and reducing the vulnerability and risk to children as they travel to school and back,” he said.The objectives of the programme include the provision of a safe mode of transportation, scheduled transportation for targeted schools, affordable transportation for students and improving the attendance of students in rural areas.last_img read more

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