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Boston told to release ratings of teachers

The secretary of state’s office has ruled that the Boston public schools wrongfully withheld overall ratings of teacher performance at individual schools.

Boston police officers wary of GPS for cruisers

The pending use of GPS tracking devices has many officers worried that commanders will monitor their every move.

Tom Clark of the Polly Hill Arboretum in West Tisbury inspected a branch. Hundreds of thousands of black oaks in Southeastern Massachusetts have shown signs of infestation by tiny gall wasps this year.


Wasps infesting, imperiling area’s black oaks

Hundreds of thousands of black oaks over more than 1,500 acres in Southeastern Mass. have shown signs of infestation this year by gall wasps. The origin, life cycle, and sudden surge in numbers remain a troubling mystery.

Typhoon survivors in an isolated village north of Tacloban rushed for water supplies delivered by a US military helicopter on Sunday.


Filipinos’ plight improving slowly, aid groups say

TACLOBAN, Philippines — International aid groups said Sunday that conditions in the typhoon disaster zone were gradually improving, as more international aid flowed into the country and Philippine community groups expanded their role in the relief effort.

Cut in food stamps brings wide worry

WASHINGTON — Unemployment remains stubbornly high, paychecks are stagnant, especially for minimum-wage workers. Yet even while the economic recovery proceeds slowly, hundreds of thousands of needy families in Massachusetts are getting bad news this month: They are losing a portion of their federal food stamp benefits. State officials, community food banks, and advocates for the poor are bracing for the full impact of a $95 million cut in nutrition assistance for the Bay State — part of a $5 billion, nationwide reduction caused by the scheduled end of a 2009 boost included in President Obama’s economic stimulus.

Land in Aquinnah on the western end of Martha’s Vineyard would host a year-round casino under a plan proposed by the Wampanoag tribe.

In casino, some see risks for Vineyarders

Mental health advocates fear a casino could increase the use of drugs and alcohol that year-round residents often turn to in the offseason.