Weekly news wrap-up

Online Co-News Editor Audrey Parish discusses the school protest, the infrastructure bill, vaccine mandates and other top stories you might have missed this week


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Hi everyone! Welcome back to another week of the West Side Story Weekly News Wrap-Up! My name is Audrey Parrish and I will be giving you the highlights of what happened this week in five categories: what’s happening at West, Iowa, the US, the world, and something wacky to top it all off. Let’s get started!

West: Most of you probably know about the protest that happened on Monday, starting during third period and lasting until after lunch. This protest was in response to a racist video posted and re-posted on social media. This protest followed a meeting hosted by Mr. Gross, who wanted to address the post. Afterward, students gathered to voice their frustrations, chanting as they walked through the school. An email from Mr. Gross was sent to the student body the evening of the protest saying that there would be resources available for students to process the events of the day, but no further action has been taken by the administration. 


Iowa: Last week, the ‘bipartisan’ infrastructure bill was narrowly approved by Congress, after receiving 215 votes of the 221 Democrats and 13 of the 213 Republicans. Of the 1 trillion dollars to be spent in this bill, five billion (0.5%) will be coming back to Iowa, to improve highways, bridges, public transportation, and expanded internet coverage.


After being reported missing last Wednesday, Fairfield Spanish teacher Nohema Graber was found dead in a park. Two 16-year-old students have been arrested for her murder, and they will be tried as adults. While the details of the investigation have not been reported yet, investigators are certain it was not racially motivated.


And, for our final piece of Iowa news, health officials report that about 7,000 kids have gotten the covid vaccine now that it is available for 5-11-year-olds. 


US: The Biden administration is planning to impose a vaccine mandate that will force companies with 100 or more employees to either ensure that all employees are vaccinated or provide weekly testing for unvaccinated employees. However, federal courts have halted the regulation. It is unknown if and when this mandate will go into effect. Supporters of this regulation argue that it could slow the spread of COVID and create a safer work environment. However, some wonder who will pay for the tests for unvaccinated workers; as these tests can be expensive or time-consuming in some areas. There is also some concern that employees who choose not to get vaccinated will look for jobs working for companies with less than 100 employees, who won’t have to adhere to the regulations.


World: The company Meta, which used to be known as Facebook, will limit advertisers’ ability to target ads based on certain sensitive categories. This was in response to criticisms of highly specific ad targeting that could, for example, target racist ads to users. This change will go into effect next year. 


Weird: The crew of astronauts aboard the SpaceX Crew Dragon Endeavor- a crew that was in space for upwards of 200 days- returned to earth in diapers because of a toilet malfunction. That must’ve sucked. 


And that’s all I have for you this week! Tune in next week for the next episode of the West Side Story weekly news wrap-up.