05 24 2016
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  • On Tuesday, a judge ordered the 78-year-old Cosby to stand trial on sexual assault charges 
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  • The judge concluded Officer Edward Nero played little role in the arrest and wasn't responsible for the failure by police to buckle Gray in  
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  • Bill Cosby faces a preliminary hearing Tuesday to determine if his criminal sex-assault case in suburban Philadelphia goes to trial.Prosecutors had declined to charge the comedian-actor over the 2005 complaint, but arrested him in December after his explosive deposition in the woman's lawsuit became public. In the testimony given in that deposition, Cosby is grilled about giving drugs and alcohol to women before sex; making secret payments to ex-lovers; and hosting Andrea Constand at his home. They knew each other through Temple University, where he was a trustee and she managed the women's basketball team. Bill Cosby's wife refused to answer dozens of questions during a combative deposition in a defamation lawsuit filed by seven women who say the comedian branded them liars after they accused him of sexually assaulting them, according to a transcript released Friday. Camille Cosby was subjected to intense questioning by the women's lawyer, who repeatedly pressed her to say whether she believes her husband "acted with a lack of integrity" during their 52-year marriage. The lawyer also asked if her husband used his position and power "to manipulate young women." Camille Cosby didn't answer those questions and many others after her lawyer cited marital privilege, the legal protection given to communications between spouses. She repeatedly said she had "no opinion" when pressed on whether she viewed her husband's behavior as dishonest and a violation of their marriage vows. About 50 women have publicly accused Bill Cosby of forcing unwanted sexual contact on them decades ago. Cosby has denied the allegations. He faces a criminal case in Pennsylvania, where prosecutors have charged him with sexually violating a former Temple University employee, Andrea Constand. He has pleaded not guilty. Camille Cosby answered questions in the deposition Feb. 22 and again April 19 after her lawyers argued unsuccessfully to stop it. A judge ruled she would have to give a deposition but said she could refuse to answer questions about private communications between her and her husband. Camille Cosby's lawyer, Monique Pressley, repeatedly cited that privilege and advised her not to answer many questions asked by the women's lawyer, Joseph Cammarata. The exchanges between Cammarata and Cosby became testy at times, and she admonished him: "Don't lecture me. Just keep going with the questions." Using a transcript of a deposition Bill Cosby gave in a civil lawsuit filed by Constand in 2005 and a transcript of an interview she gave to Oprah Winfrey in 2000, Cammarata asked Camille Cosby about extramarital affairs her husband had. "Were you aware of your husband setting up trusts for the benefit of women that he had a sexual relationship with?" Cammarata asked. She didn't answer after her lawyer cited marital privilege. Cammarata asked her about Shawn Thompson, a woman who said Bill Cosby fathered her daughter, Autumn Jackson, in the 1970s. Jackson was convicted in 1997 of attempting to extort money from Bill Cosby to prevent her from telling a tabloid she's his daughter. He acknowledged he had an affair with her mother and had given her money. "Was it a big deal when this came up in the 1970s that your husband had — big deal to you that your husband had an extramarital affair and potentially had a daughter from that extramarital affair?" Cammarata asked. "It was a big deal then, yes," Camille Cosby replied. She said she had "no opinion" on whether her husband's admission he obtained quaaludes to give to women with whom he wanted to have sex violated their marriage vows. Her lawyer objected and instructed her not to answer when Cammarata asked her if she ever suspected she had been given any type of drug to alter her state of consciousness when she had sex with her husband. A spokesman for the Cosbys declined to comment on her deposition. The Cosbys have a home in Shelburne Falls, an hour's drive from Springfield, where the lawsuit, seeking unspecified damages, was filed. An attorney handling a separate lawsuit against Bill Cosby revealed Friday that Playboy magazine founder Hugh Hefner provided sworn testimony Wednesday. In the sexual battery lawsuit filed in Los Angeles, Judy Huth says Cosby forced her to perform a sex act on him at the Playboy Mansion around 1974, when she was 15. Bill Cosby's former lawyers have accused Huth of attempting to extort him before filing the case and have tried unsuccessfully to have it dismissed. Huth's attorney, Gloria Allred, said Hefner's testimony will remain under seal for now. Hefner also was named as a defendant in a case filed Monday by former model Chloe Goins, who accuses Bill Cosby of drugging and sexually abusing her at the Playboy Mansion in 2008.   The Associated Press generally doesn't identify people who say they're victims of sexual abuse, but the women accusing Cosby have come forward to tell their stories.___AP Entertainment Writer Anthony McCartney contributed to this report from Los Angeles.
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US MathNEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Just because we spend a lot of time in school doesn't mean we're smart.

American adult proficiency in literacy, numeracy and problem solving ranks as some of the lowest among developed countries, despite a relatively high level of education, according to a recent survey.

In literacy, the United States came in 9th out of 13 industrialized countries surveyed, according to a report from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

In problem solving America ranked 8th, right below average. And Americans are particularly bad at math, coming in third from last in the numeracy rankings.

"It's distressing to see we are not performing well," said Mary Alice McCarthy, a senior policy analyst at the New America Foundation. "Young people are moving into adulthood and they do not have the necessary skills."

This comes despite the fact that the number of years Americans are expected to spend in school -- 17.1 -- is just below the OECD average of 17.5 years, and above the 16.6 years expected in the U.K. and the 16.2 years in Japan.

McCarthy said one thing that was particularly problematic is that young people in the United States are not showing a much higher level of skill than older people, despite the fact that the jobs of tomorrow will require a greater degree of knowledge.

The report attempted to measure the reading, math and problem solving skills in real world situations of over 5,000 Americans between the ages of 16 and 65.

It noted that a lack of these skills translated into real life hardships, and they were especially pronounced in America. In the United States, the odds of being in poor health are four times greater for low-skilled adults than for those with the highest proficiency -- double the average of other countries in the study.

One of the reasons America may not have scored so high is immigration, said William Thorn, a senior analyst in the education division at OECD. Immigrants tend to have fewer skills, and can bring down the average.

As with income inequality, the skills disparity was also high in the United States, said Thorn, with a big discrepancy between the good and poor performers.

Yet having a high skill set doesn't necessarily translate into a more productive economy or greater economic output. After all, Japan topped the list in both reading and math yet hardly has a red hot economy.

"The skills of a population are not entirely summarized by literacy, numbers and problem solving," said Thorn.

Still, if we want to right the situation, grades K-12 seem to be the place to start -- American college students tended to have skills more on par with their international peers.

There are no shortage of ideas on how to make America's schools better. Sandra Stotsky, a retired education professor at the University of Arkansas' Department of Education Reform, thinks students need to be held more accountable. There needs to be less testing throughout the year, but more high-stakes testing at crucial times. If students don't pass the test, they don't move on to the next grade.

Stotsky also thinks students need more options to go into the trades in high school instead of a relentless focus on sending kids to college, especially when they are not prepared.

Finally, a greater cultural emphasis reading would do wonders, Stotsky said.

"Our students spend an enormous amount of time watching TV and playing video games," she said. "How can we expect high levels of literacy from people who don't read?"

Other ways to boost the U.S. skill set include greater access to early childhood education and more adult education programs targeting low-skilled workers, said New America's McCarthy.

 

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