J.B. Pritzker
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Pritzker’s Plan To Prevent Resurgence Of COVID-19, New Guidelines For IL School Districts

As coronavirus cases surge nationwide, Governor J.B. Pritzker introduced a new plan to address a resurgence in Illinois.

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Masks on statues of Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln in downtown Springfield
Mike Smith / NPR Illinois 91.9 FM

As Cases Tick Up In Central Illinois, Local Experts Urge Masks, Hand-Washing, Social Distancing

Before the coronavirus pandemic, Ryan Bandy would post photos on social media of patrons packing his bars in Springfield. “That was my proudest moments, when you see a lot of people in your business having a good time,” Bandy said. “Now, it's bad to do that. It's wrong to have a packed business. And rightfully so.”

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Speaker Madigan Calls For Douglas, Menard Statues At Capitol To Come Down

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More People Seeking Addiction Treatment, Rehab Centers In Illinois Say

Community Voices

A sign asks customers to wear face coverings, which is required by Gov. J.B. Pritzker's most recent stay-at-home order.
Sam Dunklau / NPR Illinois

COVID-19 Updates In Springfield And Central Illinois

This post is for news on the local response to the coronavirus in Springfield and Central Illinois. For last week's updates, go to this post . You can send tips, questions or announcements to engage@nprillinois.org .

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colonnade on UIS campus
University of Illinois Springfield

UIS Releases Fall Plan For Return Of Students And Faculty

The University of Illinois Springfield released its fall plan with details on how students and faculty would return to the campus and remain safe during the coronavirus pandemic.

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President Trump in a late evening Facebook post on Wednesday announced that campaign manager Brad Parscale has been replaced in that role by Bill Stepien, amid the president's slipping performance in polls and a recent embarrassment in failing to attract supporters to the president's comeback rally in Tulsa last month.

New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art will reopen its Fifth Avenue location five days a week beginning Aug. 29, with "comprehensive" new health and safety procedures in place.

The country's largest art museum closed on March 13 amid the coronavirus pandemic. In their announcement, Met officials said it had not been closed for longer than three days in more than a century before then.

Raphael Bostic, president and CEO of the Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank, says racism is a danger to the health of America's economy.

In a recent opinion piece, Bostic reflected on the recent protests against police brutality that he says are fueled, in part, by economic inequalities that stem from systemic racism.

A year after Congress approved emergency humanitarian funds meant to benefit asylum seekers apprehended along the border with Mexico, a government watchdog report released Wednesday finds that some of that money got spent instead on things from dirt bikes to dog food to security camera systems.

J.B. Pritzker
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

As coronavirus cases surge nationwide, Governor J.B. Pritzker introduced a new plan to address a resurgence in Illinois. 

Ireland is delaying its next phase of reopening, keeping bars closed and extending other restrictions in response to a recent rise in coronavirus cases.

The country was set to enter the fourth and final phase of its incremental reopening plan on July 20. Prime Minister Micheál Martin announced Wednesday that current restrictions will remain in place until Aug. 10.

Parents, teachers and students across the country are gearing up for the new school year. But what school will look like is still a mystery.

Updated 9:48 p.m. ET Wednesday

The Twitter accounts of some of the richest and most famous people on the social media platform, including Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, Bill Gates, former President Barack Obama, Joe Biden, Kanye West and others, were attacked in what appeared to be a large-scale and coordinated cryptocurrency hack.

Hundreds of accounts, including some of the most recognizable names in America, told millions of followers that in the spirit of generosity, they would double anyone's Bitcoin payment "for the next 30 minutes."

Over the last month more than 1,000 current and former staffers with the aid group Doctors Without Borders have signed a letter with an explosive accusation: The vaunted organization, they say, is built on a mindset of "white supremacy" that perpetuates "racism by our staff, in our policies, in our hiring practices, in our workplace culture, and through the imposition of dehumanising 'humanitarian' programmes by a privileged, white minority workforce."

There will be no Rose Parade on New Year's Day in 2021, marking the first cancellation of the annual spectacle since World War II.

Organizers of the colorful Pasadena, Calif., tradition announced on Wednesday that they would be unable to host the parade in accordance with the state's reopening timeline and "after thoughtful consideration of the restrictions and guidelines in place as a result of COVID-19."

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New Report Says Schools Should Try To Reopen In Person For Elementary Students

This fall, public school districts should prioritize full-time, in-person classes for grades K-5 and for students with special needs. That's the top-line recommendation of a new report by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. The report includes an updated review of the evidence from around the world and a set of recommendations on mitigation strategies for the coronavirus in school settings. It adds to a hefty reading list of back-to-school guidance that now includes...

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Analysis & commentary on the events that made news this past week in Illinois state government & politics.

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Arts & Life

Joanna Cole, whose Magic School Bus series made science both dazzling and goofily fun for generations of children, died on July 12 at age 75. Her death was announced by her publisher, Scholastic. The cause of death was not given.

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Education Desk

Immigration and Customs Enforcement had announced that international students must take some of their classes online. If not, they could be deported from the United States. The Trump Administration just rescinded that decision. But many international students continue to face uncertainty during COVID-19. 

When he first saw the news from ICE, Sina Tayebati thought he might be getting deported back to Iran. He’s a graduate student studying mechanical engineering at Northern Illinois University.

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Equity & Justice

Dusty Rhodes / NPR Illinois

This coming school year, districts will be expected to provide information on LGBTQ figures in history before students graduate eighth grade.

State representative Anna Moeller, an Elgin Democrat, said she believes the addition is positive for all students.

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Illinois Economy

Restaurants Eagerly Await Reopening This Week

Jun 22, 2020
State of Illinois

The State of Illinois will enter Phase Four of its pandemic recovery plan this Friday June 26, Governor J.B. Pritzker announced.  The move comes as all areas of the state are meeting metrics for overall levels of COVID-19 and available health services for those seriously ill with the virus.

Read More Illinois Economy Coverage

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J.B. Pritzker
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

As coronavirus cases surge nationwide, Governor J.B. Pritzker introduced a new plan to address a resurgence in Illinois. 

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Politics

In an extended conversation with NPR on Wednesday, Mary Trump said her grandfather and family patriarch Fred Trump rewarded ruthlessness and dismissed any interests outside of the family real estate business, contributing to what she now views as an unfitness on President Trump's part to hold the office of the White House.

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

Systemic racism is a yoke that drags on the American economy. Those are the words written by, perhaps, an unexpected author, a central banker. Raphael Bostic leads the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. And he recently wrote an op-ed in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution detailing the, quote, "moral and economic imperative to end racism." Well, how does a central banker do just that? Raphael Bostic is with us now from his office in Atlanta.

Welcome.

RAPHAEL BOSTIC: Thank you, Ailsa. It's very good to be here.

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

Systemic racism is a yoke that drags on the American economy. Those are the words written by, perhaps, an unexpected author, a central banker. Raphael Bostic leads the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. And he recently wrote an op-ed in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution detailing the, quote, "moral and economic imperative to end racism." Well, how does a central banker do just that? Raphael Bostic is with us now from his office in Atlanta.

Welcome.

RAPHAEL BOSTIC: Thank you, Ailsa. It's very good to be here.

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

Systemic racism is a yoke that drags on the American economy. Those are the words written by, perhaps, an unexpected author, a central banker. Raphael Bostic leads the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. And he recently wrote an op-ed in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution detailing the, quote, "moral and economic imperative to end racism." Well, how does a central banker do just that? Raphael Bostic is with us now from his office in Atlanta.

Welcome.

RAPHAEL BOSTIC: Thank you, Ailsa. It's very good to be here.

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

Systemic racism is a yoke that drags on the American economy. Those are the words written by, perhaps, an unexpected author, a central banker. Raphael Bostic leads the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. And he recently wrote an op-ed in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution detailing the, quote, "moral and economic imperative to end racism." Well, how does a central banker do just that? Raphael Bostic is with us now from his office in Atlanta.

Welcome.

RAPHAEL BOSTIC: Thank you, Ailsa. It's very good to be here.

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The X from NPR Illinois - LISTEN ON 91.9-3 HD OR STREAM

Jonathan Wilson Goes Back To His Roots For 'Dixie Blur'

Even if you're not familiar with Jonathan Wilson's music, you may have heard his work before. He's an established producer who's partly credited with revitalizing the Laurel Canyon music scene over the last couple of decades thanks to his work with artists like Dawes and Father John Misty in his California studio. But in a bit of a surprising move, considering he's got everything he needs in LA, Jonathan decided to pick up and head to Nashville to record his latest album, Dixie Blur . In this...

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NPR Illinois Classic - LISTEN ON 91.9-2 HD OR STREAM

Broadway To Remain Closed For The Rest Of The Year

Broadway shows will remain closed until at least Jan. 3, 2021 according to an announcement from the Broadway League, an organization representing theater producers and owners, which said that ticket holders will be able to get refunds or exchanges for a future date. Broadway's theaters have been shut down since March 12 due to the coronavirus pandemic. In April, an ad campaign to raise funds for Broadway Cares and other charities, called the closure " only intermission ," but as the pandemic...

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