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Jasmine Garsd

It's election season at Canaan Elementary's second grade, in Patchogue, N.Y., and tensions are running high. Today is speech day, and right now it's Chris Palaez's turn.

The 8-year-old is the joker of the class. With a thick mohawk and a mischievous glimmer in his dark eyes, he seems like the kind of kid who would be unfazed by public speaking.

But he's nervous.

Updated June 4 at 11:30 a.m. ET

Nobody expects an internship to make one rich — but for many, the entire experience has become simply unattainable.

It's after hours at Rafael Hernandez, an elementary school in the Bronx, and Room 421 is in an uproar.

It's what you would expect from a sixth-grade sex education class learning how to put a condom on.

Sex education: The very concept makes a lot of people cringe, conjuring images of teenage giggles and discomfort. It's also a subject a lot of teachers would rather avoid.

But Bronx-based teacher Lena Solow is more than happy to talk about the birds, the bees ... and beyond.

Students applying for college supply all sorts of information — financial records, letters of recommendation, the personal essay — to name just a few.

One big question they face: Do you have a criminal record?

The question appears on the Common Application — the website that prospective students use to apply to more than 500 schools across the U.S. and abroad.

Most students don't even think about it. But for some applicants, it's a reason not to apply.

On a gusty Friday evening in Manhattan's Union Square Park, Francisco Ramirez is setting up his chairs and a big sign that yells, "FREE ADVICE."

The park is packed with street musicians, chain-smoking chess players and preachers yelling predictions

Ramirez just wants to talk.

For most college students May is a happy month: the senior class graduates and summer vacation beckons. But at Sweet Briar College, a women's college in western Virginia, there's little celebration this spring.

The board of directors says declining enrollment leaves them no choice: Classes ended this week for the year and forever.

Walking through Sweet Briar's campus feels a bit like stepping into a 19th century romance novel — lush green hills, chanting cicadas and colorful chirping birds. But this spring, an air of sadness sours the humid southern air.

In the 1920s, Aurora Orozco crossed over from Mexico to Texas — a child of African descent who spoke not a word of English. She was an uneasy transplant.

Many years later, in an essay published in 1999, she recalled attitudes towards students who were caught speaking Spanish in school: "My teacher, Mrs. White, would make me stay after class. With a red rubber band, she would hit my poor hands until they nearly bled."

Every child's ability to succeed in school is influenced by lots of external factors: teacher quality, parenting, poverty, geography, to name a few. But far less attention has been paid to the power of a child's bedroom walls. Or, rather, the paint that's on them and the lead that may be in that paint.

Laina Morris is the real person behind the Internet meme known as the "Overly Attached Girlfriend." She has deftly exploited her Internet fame, turning a spoof entry to a Justin Bieber contest into a full-time career of putting comic videos on YouTube.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Katie Morrow became a teacher, among other things, because of wanderlust.

"I'm going to be a teacher because I can go anywhere in the world," she thought.

She's originally from a small town in Nebraska called O'Neill, population 3,700. "In the middle of nowhere, literally," she says.

So where did she end up teaching? Right back in O'Neill. She fell in love with a hometown boy and ended up at O'Neill's only public school. It's K-12, with 750 students.

Morrow teaches middle-school English; she's also a technology integration specialist.

Sweet Briar College in Virginia will close its doors in May, after 114 years of teaching women at its scenic campus in western Virginia.

France is considering banning the use of anorexic models in the fashion industry.

Legislation debated Tuesday in France's Parliament would require modeling agencies to get medical certificates from models to prove that they have a body mass index of at least 18. And models would have to get routine checkups. Agencies that violate the law would be subject to fines of up to 75,000 euros ($80,968) and even prison time.

Websites and online forums that glorify anorexia and other eating disorders also would be banned.

Spanish investigators announced Tuesday that they believe they've found the remains of author Miguel de Cervantes.

Considered a pillar of Spanish literature, and one of the world's most important writers, Cervantes published Don Quixote in two parts, in 1605 and 1615. The novel narrates the adventures of a delusional man who has read so many stories about chivalry, he decides to become a knight himself. Don Quixote's idealistic and impractical ventures gave birth to the adjective "quixotic."

In 1616, Hernando Arias de Saavedra, the governor of the Spanish province that included Buenos Aires, banned the population from drinking a green herbal drink called yerba mate.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Northern Chile is home to some 7,000-year-old mummies, some of the oldest mummies in the world. But scientists say the mummies are in danger. NPR's Jasmine Garsd has this story about mummies, strange oozing substances and a mysterious fog.

Univision host Rodner Figueroa has been let go for offensive remarks about first lady Michelle Obama.

Star Wars is getting its first official LGBT character. Her name is Moff Delian Mors, and she's a character in Paul S. Kemp's upcoming Star Wars: Lords of the Sith novel. Penguin Random House describes Mors as

There's a problem with the mummies at the University of Tarapacá's archaeological museum in northern Chile.

They're turning into a black oozy substance.

Harvard University's School of Engineering and Applied Sciences says scientists have found that Chile's famous 7,000-year-old Chinchorro mummies are being eaten by bacteria — and that climate change could be the culprit.

FIFA president Sepp Blatter says he's concerned about the findings of a recent study regarding racism in Russia, which will host the 2018 World Cup.

"Scumbag Steve," "Overly Attached Girlfriend," "Bad Luck Brian." All these Internet celebrities have one thing in common: They didn't intend to become famous. Their pictures just happened to go viral.

Is nothing off-limits? That's something Kyra Pringle has been asking herself in the past couple of days. The South Carolina resident recently found out her 2-year-old daughter Mariah's birthday pictures were being shared online by thousands.

Updated at 12:15 p.m. ET.

Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., who has served in the Senate and in Congress longer than any other woman, says she will not seek a sixth term in 2016.

Mikulski, 78, announced her decision Monday in Baltimore.

" 'Do I spend my time raising money, or do I spend my time raising hell?' " she said she asked herself, according to The Associated Press.

Mexican authorities say they have detained Servando Gomez, the leader of the Knights Templar drug cartel and one of Mexico's most-wanted men.

NPR's Carrie Kahn filed this report for our Newscast unit:

"He's known as 'La Tuta' and has evaded capture for years. Authorities say he was taken down in [Morelia,] the state capital of Michoacan, during an early morning raid Friday without a single shot fired.

Extramarital sex is no longer a crime in South Korea, giving shares of contraceptive companies a boost.

On Thursday, South Korea's Constitutional Court struck down a decades-old law that made adultery a crime punishable by up to two years in prison.

NPR's Anthony Kuhn tell our Newscast unit that "roughly 100,000 people have been convicted of adultery since the law was passed in 1953, but conviction rates have recently fallen to below 1 percent."

Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez has given West Coast dockworkers and the Pacific Maritime Association an ultimatum. If they don't resolve their ongoing labor dispute, he'll move neogotiations from the west coast to Washington, D.C.

The labor dispute started nine months ago, between the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) of shipping lines and terminals and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU), which represents 20,000 dockworkers.

Popular Mexican actress Lorena Rojas has died of cancer at age 44.

Rojas was born Seydi Lorena Rojas González in Mexico City and got her big break in the 1990s with the telenovela Alcanzar Una Estrella. She later starred in Azul Tequila, El Cuerpo del Deseo and Pecados Ajenos. Her most recent telenovela was Rosario.

I was 9 years old and living in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in the summer of 1992 when my mother announced that we were heading downtown to run errands.

It was an opportunity to escape the house, my grandmother's nagging and my little brother's jokes. Also, trips downtown almost always meant ice cream. I remember putting on a pink dress with a pink cloth flower over my chest.

In an hour, we were downtown. We reached the front patio of a bookstore when a thunderous explosion went off just down the block. The power was overwhelming.

"I can't be the first person to notice that Brian Williams and Jon Stewart both seem available in about 6 months," NPR's Scott Simon recently tweeted.

It's hard not to compare the two.

A Chinese company building a canal across Nicaragua has handed over more than 15,000 pre-Columbian relics to the Nicaraguan government. The relics, mostly pieces of pottery and obsidian, date from around 500 B.C. to the 1500s A.D.

The Associated Press reports, "The pieces were collected over six weeks by a team of 29 archaeologists and other specialists along the canal's 173-mile route."

Óscar Arnulfo Romero, the archbishop of San Salvador in El Salvador, was an outspoken voice for justice during the civil war that tore that country apart between 1980 and 1992. In the end, he paid with his life: On March 24, 1980, he was shot while giving mass.

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