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CNN Student News Summer 2009 Special Edition

  • Story Highlights
  • Check out some of the stories making global headlines this summer
  • Visit an inner-city school where every graduate goes on to college
  • Hear some upperclassmen's advice for incoming high school freshmen
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(CNN Student News) -- July 15, 2009

Quick Guide

World Headlines - Check out some of the stories making global headlines this summer.

Demanding Success - Visit an inner-city school where every graduate goes on to college.

Student Views: Advice for Freshmen - Hear some upperclassmen's advice for incoming high school freshmen.



CARL AZUZ, CNN STUDENT NEWS ANCHOR: You've found it: our special, midsummer edition of CNN Student News! This is great! We're glad to have you along. Broadcasting from the CNN Center, my name is Carl Azuz.

First Up: World Headlines

AZUZ: First up, world headlines. Here's some of what's been going on since the last time we talked to you. Unrest in Iran after a disputed presidential election led to widespread protests and violence. It all started when voters thought that the election would be close, or even that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had lost. But the Iranian government announced that Ahmadinejad had won in a landslide. Demonstrators hit the streets, demanding a full recount. The Iranian government says at least 20 people were killed in clashes with police and militia. The actual death toll may be higher. Iran says it did do a partial recount that confirmed the original election results. Ahmadinejad is scheduled to be sworn in for his second term at the end of July.

While you might travel for your summer break, President Barack Obama took a working trip in early July. First, the president met with his Russian counterpart, Dmitry Medvedev. The leaders are trying to reach an agreement to reduce nuclear weapons. After Russia, the president traveled west. You see him here meeting with the pope at the Vatican. The president also joined other world leaders at the G8 summit in Italy, where they talked about issues facing the world. Mister Obama ended his international trip in the African nation of Ghana. He cited the country's successful democracy as a model for the African continent.

Now, we're bringing you back to Washington. Sonia Sotomayor, President Obama's nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court, got grilled by the Senate Judiciary Committee this week. It's part of the advice and consent that the Senate gives when the president nominates someone to the Supreme Court. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell says he's concerned that Sotomayor may favor certain groups as a justice. But it's widely expected that Sotomayor will be confirmed by the full Senate, which would make her the first hispanic justice on the High Court. You can watch her confirmation hearings at

Michael Jackson Remembered

AZUZ: Now, another story that people around the world have been discussing for weeks. We've gotten some of your comments about Michael Jackson on our Facebook page. The 50-year-old entertainer died in a Los Angeles hospital on June 25 after suffering cardiac arrest; his heart stopped. The self-proclaimed "King of Pop" began his career with his brothers at age five. His solo album "Thriller" became the world's biggest selling album of all time. Jackson's legacy isn't without controversy, though. He battled legal and financial problems throughout his career. Still, the Guinness Book of World Records calls him "the most successful entertainer of all time."


Downloadable Maps

ERIK NIVISON, CNN STUDENT NEWS: Today's Shoutout goes out to all of our Facebook fans who've kept up with us this summer! About what percent of U.S. high school graduates go directly to college? If you think you know the answer, shout it out! Is it: A) Fewer than 15 percent, B) 30 percent, C) 45 percent or D) More than 60 percent? You've got three seconds -- GO! According to the National Center for Education Statistics, more than 60 percent of high school graduates have gone directly to college in recent years. That's your answer and that's your Shoutout!

Demanding Success

AZUZ: Check this out: There's one principal who says all of his graduates go on to a four-year college. The high school we're talking about is called Capital Prep. It is a public school, it is in an inner-city neighborhood, and it is a place where progress is being made. Soledad O'Brien takes us to class.


STEVE PERRY, CAPITAL PREPARATORY MAGNET SCHOOL PRINCIPAL: Good morning! Good morning! Good morning! Good morning! Where's your coat, man? Tough guy. Good morning!

SOLEDAD O'BRIEN, CNN SPECIAL INVESTIGATIONS UNIT CORRESPONDENT: Every morning at 7:30 a.m., you can find Steve Perry here. He's principal of Capital Preparatory Magnet School in Hartford, Connecticut.

PERRY: What's up, chief?

O'BRIEN: Each and every day, he and Vice Principal Rich Baganski greet each and every student as they walk through Capital's doors.

PERRY: How are you today?

O'BRIEN: For Perry, being a principal is all about the details.

PERRY: Whose gray is this? That's not ours.


PERRY: Mr. Carter, you've got to be kidding me. Is that the fastest you can move, son?

O'BRIEN: From uniform inspections...

PERRY: Where's your blazer, son?


PERRY: Ok. Having it is not enough, right? Put it on.

O'BRIEN: To morning meetings...

PERRY: I know there are quite a few who've not done curriculum mapping.

O'BRIEN: He does it all.

PERRY: I wake up at 4:45 in the morning and I drive kids to school.

O'BRIEN: You take kids to school.

PERRY: I do.

O'BRIEN: In your car?

PERRY: I have to.

O'BRIEN: You pick them up?

PERRY: Every day.

O'BRIEN: Why? You're the principal!

PERRY: I know. I'm the bus driver in the morning, though. You do what you gotta do to get it done.

O'BRIEN: And getting it done is priority number one for Perry and his staff.

PERRY: We have a school that is designed to send children to college. If we do not send children to college, we are not doing our job.

O'BRIEN: How many of your kids go to college?

PERRY: 100% of our graduates go on to college.

O'BRIEN: 100%?

PERRY: 100%.

O'BRIEN: Every child who graduates?

PERRY: Every child that graduates from Capital Prep goes on to a four-year college. Period.

O'BRIEN: Children like 18-year-old Glorious Menafee.

GLORIOUS MENAFEE, CAPITAL PREPARATORY MAGNET SCHOOL SENIOR: I honestly believe that if I hadn't gone to Capital Prep, I think I wouldn't have finished high school.

O'BRIEN: In spite of a tough childhood, she's smart, hardworking, a natural leader. And she's thrived, she says, because she's surrounded by other motivated students.

MENAFEE: Everyone has a certain goal, and that goal is to go to college. So when you hear it, it kind of spreads like wildfire. I'm going to college! I'm going to college! I'm going to college!

O'BRIEN: How does Capital send all of its graduates on to college?

PERRY: What we do right is we designed a school that's year round. There is no reason why children should be home during the summer. What we do right is we have a longer school day. What we do right is we go to school on Saturdays. What we do right is work hard to get children to a place where they need to be.


Black in America Two Promo

AZUZ: For stories of other black leaders making a difference in their communities, watch Black In America 2! It premieres on July 22 and 23 at 8 p.m. Eastern. We have a free curriculum guide with discussion questions and a Learning Activity that you can use with the program. You can access it all at

Student Views: Advice for Freshmen

AZUZ: Another program that tries to develop tomorrow's leaders descends on Atlanta every summer. Leadership Unplugged brings together about a hundred high school sophomores and juniors from across the state of Georgia. They move into the dorms at Georgia Tech and learn directly from the leaders of CNN! We asked these future leaders what advice they would give to the incoming class of 2013.


CHELSEA WOODY, LEADERSHIP UNPLUGGED PARTICIPANT: My advice would be every day is a challenge, and you just have to attack it with your best


DEVEN JOHNSON, LEADERSHIP UNPLUGGED PARTICIPANT: High school is a long, tired, tedious process. They're going to have their ups and downs. I would just tell them to stick with it.

TYLER JACOBS, LEADERSHIP UNPLUGGED PARTICIPANT: Try new things. Just don't be afraid to branch out.

NATHAN RICH, LEADERSHIP UNPLUGGED PARTICIPANT: Clubs, clubs, clubs. That's where you're going to meet the most people, teachers, network, make a lot of good friends.

EMIRAMI PEPE, LEADERSHIP UNPLUGGED PARTICIPANT: Don't just hang out with one group of people. Make sure you meet other people and be more social and be more diverse.

BRENAE WRIGHT, LEADERSHIP UNPLUGGED PARTICIPANT: Keep a balance between their social and academic life.

BIANCA STEWART, LEADERSHIP UNPLUGGED PARTICIPANT: Don't get lazy with your school work, because it will follow you all the way through your high school career.

DOWLING PAYNE, LEADERSHIP UNPLUGGED PARTICIPANT: Just be yourself and learn as much as you can, because you're really going to use what you learn in high school in the rest of your life.


Before We Go

AZUZ: Before we go, this ain't your daddy's NASCAR, it's your great granddaddy's! These antique Ford Model Ts raced from New York to Seattle, Washington at 35 miles per hour! A tough trek for the cars and for the drivers, too. Think about it: 4,000 miles, a whole month on the road, no air conditioning, no cruise control, and no radio! You can bet the owners of these classic cars weren't drifting, except maybe off to sleep.



AZUZ: Luckily, none of the Model Ts got T-boned. What would a summer show be without a pun? Now, we're not saying goodbye. Our Facebook page is always open. We've been putting up new videos all summer showing a different side of us than you see on the show. You can check them out at And we'll be back with our daily shows starting on Monday, August 17th. Thanks for watching! I'm Carl Azuz.

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