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Special education policies in Mass. reviewed

Contrary to popular belief, low-income school districts are most likely to place students in special-education programs for sometimes questionable disabilities, according to a new study.

Aram Boghosian for The Boston Globe

Deluge temporarily brings relief to a parched Mass.

The gush of rain ends the months-long dearth of precipitation that has left the state’s rivers at record lows.

Essdras M Suarez/Globe Staff

Bicycle deliveries are on the rise in Boston

Steak dinners and sofas are just a few of the items being schlepped around the city on two wheels, and sometimes three, as more local companies use bicycles and cargo trikes to deliver goods. Reasons range from the environmental to the efficient to the economical; it’s also an eye-catching advertising opportunity, with pedal-powered delivery vehicles turning heads that wouldn’t have budged for an ordinary delivery van.

Obesity rates dropping among Mass. infants, toddlers

After a three-decade tripling in childhood obesity rates, the trend has leveled off and, for the first time, appears to be on a substantial decline - at least among Massachusetts infants and preschoolers. That’s according to a study published Monday in the journal Pediatrics, which found that the percentage of obese girls under age 6 dropped from 9 percent to slightly more than 6 percent from 2004 to 2008; the percentage of obese boys under age 6 fell from nearly 11 percent to just under 9 percent during the same time period.