A.M. Costa Rica
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in up to 90 countries.
|San José, Costa Rica, Friday, May 24, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 102|
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|Maps and data about public
be released next week
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff
The Programa Estado de la Nación has generated maps and data that provide a picture of public education in Costa Rica.
The agency and the Programa de Investigación en Desarrollo Humano Sostenible de la Universidad de Costa Rica will present what is being called an educational atlas Wednesday.
Also participating are the Ministerio de Educación Pública and the economics faculty at the university.
The atlas is being characterized as a tool. A broad summary of the state of the nation study contained no surprises.
|For example, one finding is
large- and medium-sized
communities have bigger schools than the small ones
located in the
rural Nicoya peninsula, the central Pacific and the Brunca
The atlas will provide statistics on many variables, including student dropouts, repeating students and schools in areas of geological risk, said a summary.
The report noted that the big increase in student numbers was in the decades of the 1960s and 1970s.
After the presentation next week, the data and the maps will be on the agency's Web site.
|U.S. hurricane prediction
points to a
more active season
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff
and wire service reports
The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is predicting an Atlantic hurricane season more active than earlier estimates.
The agency said the Atlantic season this year may see as many as six major storms.
The agency said Thursday there is a 70 percent chance that 13 to 20 named storms will form in the Atlantic Ocean this season. It says as many as 11 of them could strengthen into hurricanes, storms with winds of 119 kph or higher.
The forecasters say they cannot predict if any of those storms will strike land.
The agency known as NOAA says warmer than average waters in the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic along with other atmospheric conditions make it ripe for an active hurricane season. The agency says it is committed to providing life-saving forecasts.
The Atlantic hurricane season begins June 1.
Colorado State University forecasting team said that there
eight named storms, nine of which will be
Of the hurricanes they said they see two major ones.
The higher activity than the 1981 to 2010 average is due to warmer ocean surface temperatures and the lack of an El Niño condition, said the forecast.
Last season was similar and saw two major hurricanes, 19 named storms and 10 hurricanes. Many dissipated in the open Atlantic.
The forecast is important to Costa Rica, because the country feels the backlash of strong storms even if the actual hurricane does not enter the country.
The Colorado researchers are Philip J. Klotzbach and William M. Gray. Gray has been making fairly accurate predictions for 29 years.
The Pacific hurricane season began May 15. Both seasons end Nov. 30. However, it is not unusual for a storm to ignore the calendar.
|Some answers to questions
raised by A.M.
Costa Rica readers
|Jo Stuart is
from Hospital México after a bout of illness. We
column to resume next week. In the meantime, we take this
to give some newspaper trade insights.
A reader wondered in an email why the news articles in A.M. Costa Rica were not more objective. He seemed to be most worried about wire service stories out of Washington, D.C., that were critical of the Barack Obama administration.
We had to tell him that news gathering is a very subjective activity. First a reporter or editor must determine if something is newsworthy. Here at A.M. Costa Rica that is a bit tricky because our readership is much different than that of the Spanish-language newspapers. What is important at La Nación may not be important here.
We have been writing for years about various types of crimes affecting expats, including home invasions, property thefts and credit card frauds. We also stress development, business operations, taxes and relationships with government agencies. These are all of high interest to expats here, but not something that is reported heavily in the Spanish-language newspapers.
An example is the type of news story that Garland Baker has written for years. Most are of little interest to the casual tourists but of upmost urgency for those trying to carve out a life in Costa Rica.
We also try to maintain U.S. publishing standards. Costa Rican police and prosecutors seem to treat everyone who is arrested as a convicted criminal. We prefer to call them suspects until the facts show otherwise.
A case in point is the Colombian who was involved in the use of a private plane by Laura Chinchilla. A reader wondered why we did not say in the initial news stories that he was being investigated for links to narcotraffickers in his
homeland. Well, we did not say so because we did not know that for a fact. The Spanish press said that because they relied on claims printed in some Colombian newspapers years ago. That is not good enough for us.
Frequently, too, a reader will email a link to an article in another publication and suggest that we reprint it. Although we appreciate the gesture, we do not have the legal right to reprint anything without permission. That distinction is lost on some Internet writers who basically steal material from online sources. We created Costa Rica Report to prepare legally acceptable brief paragraphs of Spanish language news stories and provide a link to the original site. La Nación hires reporters just like we do. The newspaper pays for their efforts. To steal the product of their labors and publish it elsewhere without permission is morally and legally lacking whether the result is in English or Spanish. And that is true even if the writer says where the information originated.
Publishing itself is fraught with perils. Most expats know how inconsistent the legal process is here. What they may not know is that defamation is a felony. At any moment, police may come to our office door to carry off editors and reporters to San Sebastián because some lawyer has filed an allegation of defamation. There doesn't have to be a conviction, only success in convincing some judge that the alleged crime warrants pre-trial detention.
So if a news story stops in mid-sentence some day, readers will know why.
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