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Sunday Morning News Memo for March 13, 2011

Image via Media Tools, courtesy Google, DigitalGlobe, GeoEye


Japan Death Toll Soars

Japan is facing mounting threats in the wake of Friday's devastating earthquake and tsunami. A police official in one town now says the death toll just in his area is likely more than 10,000. Search and rescue teams from around the world are headed to Japan, to help look for the missing. This series of photosillustrates the extent of the damage in some of the worst-hit places.

The country's prime minister calls it the worst challenge for Japan since World War II. 

In the meantime, danger is also growing from nuclear power plants there, after two reactors went into partial meltdown, and cooling problems surfaced at several others. KUT's Ben Philpott filed this story on how the nuclear problems in Japan could affect the debate over nuclear power here in Texas.


Thousands Rally Against School Cuts

Organizers say more than 10,000 people showed up at the Texas Capitol yesterday to protest proposed state budget cuts to public education. As KUT's Erika Aguilar reports, the Save Texas Schools organizers... 

...say they want legislators to use the state’s “Rainy Day Fund” to shore up education cuts and move forward with securing $830 million in federal funding that was offered to the state last year to prevent teacher job cuts.  The coalition is also calling for legislators to “fix school funding laws to be fair to all districts and student populations.”

The Statesman reports: 

  Current state budget proposals would leave public education more than $9 billion short of the funding required under current law. Under the proposals, about 100,000 public school employees could be laid off, according to the Center for Public Policy Priorities.


SXSW Gets Down to Business

South by Southwest has barely begun, but the red carpets are rolled out are and the panels are on. KUT's Nathan Bernier is blogging from SXSWi, check out his reports here.

Matt Largey is the Projects Editor at KUT. That means doing a little bit of everything: editing reporters, producing podcasts, reporting, training, producing live events and always being on the lookout for things that make his ears perk up. Got a tip? Email him at Follow him on Twitter @mattlargey.
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