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Local News

  • Lab-in-a-box fuels zeal for science

    I love science!

    That is the enthusiastic cry of one of the Rockwood Middle School sixth-grade students in Cassandra Dothard’s class.

    They are learning life science, thanks to hands on materials from what has been termed “lab-in-a-box,” a project of Rural Communities STEM Initiative, an Oak Ridge business and education partnership to help the school districts improve science, technology, engineering and math skills in the area K-12 students.

  • Roane funding of schools over Tenn. average

    Some have accused Roane County Executive Ron Woody of cutting funding for education.

    Data from the state, however, shows the percentage of local funds going to Roane County Schools has gone up since he’s been in office.

    “People say a lot of stuff,” Woody said. “It doesn’t mean they have the facts to support it. I think the evidence is in the reports.”

  • School board stymies transfer of Dunn land

    Is the Michael Dunn Center in the way of future retail development along Gallaher Road?

    Some county officials think so, according to President and CEO Mike McElhinney.

    “Members of the County Commission have said we don’t want to see Michael Dunn Center basically in our way if a venture, a Target or some other commercial development would begin along Gallaher Road,” McElhinney told the Roane County Board of Education last month.

  • Harriman looking at hiring facilities worker

    Harriman wants someone in place to maintain downtown hospital property when Covenant Health moves Roane Medical Center’s operations to Midtown.

    City Council approved creating the position of a facilities maintenance worker for those buildings and other city-owned structures, such as the Temperance Building.

    “There is no doubt there is going to be a tremendous need for the position,” said Councilman Lonnie Wright.

  • Starving boy’s dad makes court appearance

    Child starvation defendant Matthew Dotson made an appearance in Roane County Criminal Court on Friday.

    A Roane County grand jury indicted him and his wife, Amanda Dotson, for first-degree murder in June. They are accused of starving their 2-year-old son, Clifford, to death.

    Matthew Dotson was released from jail on a $100,000 bond on June 29. Amanda Dotson remains in custody on a $100,000 bond.

    Assistant District Attorney General Bill Reedy said pretrial motions are scheduled to be heard in the case in March.

  • Earthquake felt in Roane County

    At 12:08 Saturday afternoon, Roane County residents received quite a shock as a 4.3 magnitude earthquake centered eight miles west of Whitesburg, Ky was felt throughout East Tennessee. Whitesburg is located approximately 45 miles NNW of Kingsport.

    Social media lit up after the event with people all across Roane County saying they felt the effects of the tremor. The quake was reported to have been felt as far south as Atlanta and as far north as Cincinnati, although no immediate damage has been reported.

  • Bucking national trends, it’s Romney over Obama here

    Bucking the national trend, Roane County and the rest of the state went heavily for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney in Tuesday’s election.
    However, the solid local and state support wasn’t enough to help Romney achieve his goal of capturing the White House.
    The former Massachusetts governor conceded the presidential race to Barack Obama around midnight Wednesday.

  • Good news for schools in grad rates, math

    Improvements in math and graduation rate: Those were the two things Director of Schools Gary Aytes said he was most proud of about Roane County Schools 2012 state report card.
    In the academic growth category, Roane County received a C in math in 2011.
    In 2012 the county scored an A.
    The graduation rate went from 78.2 percent in 2011 to 88.8 percent in 2012. 
    “That’s tremendous,” Aytes said.
    Aytes said the disappointments were in reading/language, science and the ACT.

  • Pill-pushing defendant faces extra punishment

    Two prior drug convictions mean trouble for John Wesley Goss in his federal drug case.
    Goss, of Rockwood, was one of 23 people charged with oxycodone trafficking and money laundering conspiracies earlier this year.
    “Deaths are alleged to have resulted from the use of oxycodone in connection with the drug conspiracy,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.
    The FBI referred to Goss as the lead defendant in the case.
    According to court records, Goss was convicted twice in federal court in the 1990s on drug charges.

  • Holocaust survivor: ‘Look what hate does’

    Punishment for sassiness today might earn a child a slap on the bottom or a few minutes in timeout.
    For Jewish children who mouthed off to the Nazis or their collaborators, the consequences were much more severe.
    “A boy, maybe 10 or 12, talked to the guards and sassed them,” Arthur Pais recalled. “They shot him.”
    Pais is a survivor of the Kovno Ghetto and the Dachau Concentration Camp. The young boy being shot is among his most vivid memories from the Holocaust.