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Indiana teachers in wealthy districts paid $2,400 bonuses. Those in poor districts got $42.

Fri., Dec. 23, 2016, 11:30 a.m.

FILE – Indiana Gov. and Vice President-elect Mike Pence rests his hand on the shoulder of Brian Felts at Wheeler Mission Ministries in Indianapolis on Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2016. A merit pay system instituted by Pence rewards teachers in wealthy school district significantly more than those in poor districts. (Mykal McEldowne / AP)
In 2013, then-Indiana Gov. – and now Vice president-elect – Mike Pence proposed a state budget item that would award public school districts and their educators annual bonuses based on academic performance and individual teacher success. The concept, known as merit pay, was both popular and controversial at the time, and Pence, whose wife is a schoolteacher, had made education reform a top priority.

Malta plane hijacking ends peacefully; 2 Libyans surrender

Fri., Dec. 23, 2016, 7:46 a.m.

An Afriqiyah Airways plane from Libya stands on the tarmac at Malta's Luqa International airport, Friday, Dec. 23, 2016. Two hijackers diverted a Libyan commercial plane to Malta on Friday and threatened to blow it up with hand grenades, Maltese authorities and state media said. (Jonathan Borg / AP)
Two Libyan hijackers diverted a domestic flight to the Mediterranean island of Malta on Friday to demand asylum in Europe and create a new political party in honor of the late dictator Moammar Gadhafi, officials said. After hours of negotiations, the standoff ended peacefully with the hijackers freeing all 117 people on board and walking off the plane to surrender.

Berlin attack suspect slain in shootout with Italian police

Fri., Dec. 23, 2016, 7:36 a.m.

Italian Police cordon off an area after a shootout between police and a man near a train station in Milan’s Sesto San Giovanni neighborhood, Italy, early Friday, Dec. 23, 2016. Italy’s interior minister Marco Minniti says the man killed in an early-hours shootout in Milan is “without a shadow of doubt” the Berlin Christmas market attacker Anis Amri. (Daniele Bennati / AP)
A routine request for ID papers outside a deserted train station in a Milan suburb at 3 a.m. Friday led to a police shootout that killed the Tunisian fugitive wanted in the deadly Christmas market attack in Berlin.

White nationalists raise millions with tax-exempt charities

Thu., Dec. 22, 2016, 9:49 p.m.

The federal government has allowed four groups at the forefront of the white nationalist movement to register as charities and raise more than $7.8 million in tax-deductible donations over the past decade, according to an Associated Press review.

Texas officer on restricted duty after videotaped arrests

Thu., Dec. 22, 2016, 8:13 p.m.

A white Texas police officer was placed on restricted duty Thursday while an internal investigation looks into a video showing the officer wrestling a black woman to the ground before arresting her and her two teenage daughters.

Russia mourns slain ambassador to Turkey with Moscow ceremony

Thu., Dec. 22, 2016, 3:32 p.m.

Russia mourned Ambassador Andrey Karlov with a ceremony at the Foreign Ministry in Moscow attended by the country’s leadership, three days after the career diplomat was gunned down in an art gallery in Ankara.

Happy birthday to Colo: Oldest gorilla in U.S. turns 60

Thu., Dec. 22, 2016, 3:10 p.m.

Colo, the nation’s oldest living gorilla, eats cake inside her enclosure during her 60th birthday party at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, Thursday in Columbus, Ohio. (Ty Wright / Associated Press)
She is a mother of three, grandmother of 16, great-grandmother of 12 and great-great-grandmother of three. She recently had surgery to remove a malignant tumor, but doctors say she’s doing well.

Trump wants to ‘greatly strengthen and expand’ U.S. nuclear capability

Thu., Dec. 22, 2016, 2:53 p.m.

President-elect Donald Trump speaks to members of the media at Mar-a-Lago, in Palm Beach, Fla., Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2016. (Andrew Harnik / Associated Press)
President-elect Donald Trump on Thursday called for the United States to expand its nuclear arsenal, after Russian President Vladimir Putin said his country’s nuclear potential needs fortifying, in what would reverse decades of efforts to reduce the number and size of the two countries’ nuclear weapons.

Analysis: Trump team sought informatin on women’s issues programs from State Department

Thu., Dec. 22, 2016, 1:32 p.m.

The Donald Trump transition team instructed the State Department to turn over all information Wednesday about “gender-related staffing, programming, and funding,” setting off alarm bells among those who fear that the new administration is going to purge programs that promote women’s equality along with the people who work on them.

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