Costa ruled out of Maribor clash as injuries hit Chelsea

first_imgBy Martyn HermanChelsea will be without striker Diego Costa for their Champions League clash at home to Maribor on Wednesday.“He hasn’t trained because he’s not in condition to do so,” manager Jose Mourinho told a news conference on Monday.“It’s the same problem that he is having, it’s simple. Let’s see what happens for the next weekend.”Costa, who has made a stunning start to his Chelsea career with nine Premier League goals since joining from Atletico Madrid, has been struggling with a hamstring injury and did not play in the 2-1 defeat of Crystal Palace on Saturday.Chelsea are well-placed in Group G with four points from their opening two fixtures but have several players unavailable for the visit of the Slovenian outsiders to Stamford Bridge.Midfielders John Obi Mikel, Andre Schurrle and Ramires will all play no part while striker Didier Drogba is not fit enough to play for 90 minutes, according to Mourinho.“Mikel made a big effort to be available for the weekend. He came back from the national team with a foot problem. He can’t play tomorrow,” he said.“Didier is not in condition to play 90 minutes but he can play.”He confirmed that 17-year-old reserve team striker Dominic Solanke would start on the bench.last_img read more

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Striving to meet state goals

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREOregon Ducks football players get stuck on Disney ride during Rose Bowl eventAnd despite seemingly insurmountable challenges, some are making impressive gains. “It speaks to the level of work and commitment on the part of the staff to address standards,” said San Fernando High School Principal Jose L. Rodriguez. “It’s one thing to get off the (Program Improvement) list, but the most difficult thing is to stay off the list.” Even as a Public Policy Institute study released Thursday reveals that Californians are disenchanted with the public education system, struggling schools are overcoming challenges and demonstrating that with the right attention and focus, students can do better. More than one-fourth of LAUSD campuses are deemed Program Improvement because they repeatedly failed to meet No Child Left Behind standards. But 23 have come off PI status since the 2003-04 calendar year. San Fernando High was in the third year of Program Improvement when it reversed its performance and met the state-imposed benchmarks for two consecutive years. The school with a 98 percent Latino and 80 percent low-income population had an Academic Performance Index of 585 out of a possible 1,000 _ up from 474 five years ago. The state goal is 800. San Fernando officials hope to complete by the end of 2007 breaking up the school into academies. Program Improvement schools are also beginning to look at converting to charters – independent public schools exempt from certain state laws. As a charter, they would receive funding directly from the state as opposed to getting it filtered through the district. Robert Garcia, principal at Fulton, a PI school in Van Nuys, said they have increased the academic and vocational education options at school, including offering Valley College courses on campus after school. But one option available to them is becoming a charter, which would give them more flexibility in how they spend their money. “I think that any school, whether PI or not, that doesn’t look at all the options available to them is narrow-minded,” Garcia said. “If the school community goes in the direction of charters, that’s something that should be examined. Some parents have expressed interest, but it hasn’t been an overwhelming rush right now. I think they’re pleased with the direction we’ve been going in.” While none of the Program Improvement schools at LAUSD have converted to charters, the California Charter Schools Association has received dozens of calls from PI schools seeking information on how to convert, said Caprice Young, who heads up the association. “The biggest benefit to becoming charter is that they get to actually have control over what intervention plans they implement,” Young said. “Also, there’s more flexibility to engage community-based organizations and colleges and universities in improving your program.” Bob Collins, chief instructional officer of secondary instruction at LAUSD, cautioned not to look at PI schools as “failing,” since all subgroups – including special education and English learners – must also meet yearly progress goals. “Because you’re a PI school does not mean you are not making significant progress as a school,” Collins said. “I think we need to be wise enough that these schools are serving students and doing exceptional jobs, but they may not be meeting the target for particular subgroups.” naush.boghossian@dailynews.com (818) 713-3722160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! San Fernando High is breaking up its 4,600-student school into academies in an effort to personalize education for its students. Fulton College Preparatory School is offering more rigorous academic courses to encourage more students to go into higher education. Still other schools are offering intensive after-school and Saturday tutoring programs to help struggling students catch up. These are among the strategies being used by some 200 Los Angeles Unified School District campuses that have been designated by the state as “program improvement schools.” Unless they make significant academic improvements, they face being taken over by the state or even shut down. last_img read more

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WATCH: Guys head for night out to team that scores first – where did they go?

first_imgThe return of the football season has excited fans up and down the land but for one group of friends they added a little extra spice to their day.The group decided that it would be a great idea to head for a night out to whichever team scored first during Saturday’s 3pm kick-offs.Naturally the guys were hoping for places like Cardiff or Bristol – two places that are renowned for having a great night life.So who scored first? Well that would be Scunthorpe…Check out the video above to see how the guys got on.last_img read more

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DARPA awards 40 million to restore memories

Some researchers, however, are skeptical that the efforts will make major headway on such a complicated problem.Both the UCLA team, led by neurosurgeon Itzhak Fried, and the UPenn team, led by neuroscientist Michael Kahana, will start out by studying neuronal activity in people with epilepsy, who are often recruited for brain stimulation studies because they were already treated through open-brain surgery. Fried will build on his earlier work in epileptic patients, which has shown that stimulating the entorhinal cortex improves performance on a computer game that requires players to quickly learn and remember where to drop off taxi passengers in a virtual city. Next, he will use data from those studies to build computational models of how the entorhinal cortex and hippocampus work together to convert daily experiences into lasting memories.Kahana also aims to develop a computational model of memory formation, but using a different approach. By searching the brains of epileptic patients for electrical “biomarkers” of memory retrieval and storage, he hopes to build a program that can detect when memory goes awry and instruct a device to help repair it.The U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California and the device manufacturer Medtronic will also contribute to the efforts, aiming to build neurostimulators at least 10 times smaller than previous devices. Contractual agreements about rights to the technologies are still under way, according to DARPA officials.If successful, the researchers ultimately hope to conduct the first clinical trials of deep brain stimulation in people with traumatic brain injury. That’s a “very achievable and realizable” goal because the teams are building on solid existing research in people and animals, says James Giordano, a neuroscientist at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., who serves as a neuroethics adviser to DARPA’s BRAIN-related efforts.The viability of the DARPA effort will depend greatly on what kind of memory loss people with traumatic brain injury actually have, says Roger Redondo, a neuroscientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge. Memory loss can result from problems with either storage or retrieval, he notes. In the case of a storage problem, the connections that form a memory were either never formed to begin with, or were destroyed, he says. In such cases, “no implantable device is going to help.”On the other hand, if a traumatic injury produces a retrieval problem, in which most of a memory is there, but simply difficult to access, stimulation could potentially be useful, he says. “It is going to be extremely hard,” however, to determine which cells contain the memory and precisely tune electrical stimulation to drive its retrieval, he says. “The complexity of the brain, and the hippocampus, is such that any change in voltage that a microelectrode or chip can apply, even in a tiny area, will affect multitudes of neurons in uncontrolled ways,” he says.Relying too heavily on epilepsy as a model for traumatic brain injury could also be problematic, says neuropsychologist James Sumowski of the Kessler Foundation in West Orange, New Jersey. Although some people with such injuries go on to develop epilepsy, most don’t show the same patterns of abnormal electrical activity or areas of atrophy that epileptic patients do, he says. “They are very different disorders.”On the bright side, such challenges define the kind of “blue-sky, high-risk” project that DARPA is uniquely positioned to take on, Redondo says. Given the 270,000 veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars who have been diagnosed with traumatic brain injury, nothing less than a major scientific leap is required, says Justin Sanchez, program manager for DARPA’s memory restoration program. As things stand, the options for injured service members “are very few.”*Correction, 11 July, 12:10 p.m.: A previous version of this story attributed the final quote by Justin Sanchez to Geoffrey Ling. The story has been corrected. Click to view the privacy policy. 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Country Email Last fall, Geoffrey Ling, a top biotechnology research official at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), challenged neuroscientists to do something extraordinary: Develop an implantable device that can restore memory loss in vets with traumatic brain injuries. Offering up to $40 million in short-term, high-stakes funding, Ling said, “Here’s the golden ring—who’s brave enough to step up and actually grab it?”Today, DARPA announced two academic teams that will spend the next 4 years attempting to meet that challenge as part of President Barack Obama’s roughly $110 million Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative. Researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), will receive up to $15 million to develop a memory-restoring prosthesis that focuses on the entorhinal cortex and hippocampus—brain regions key to memory formation. A second team at the University of Pennsylvania (UPenn) will receive up to $22.5 million to develop a device that can monitor and modulate many different brain regions involved in memory formation and storage. read more

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