http://www.gadcotimes.com/todaysnews/rss.xml en GEMS reading scores among state’s highest http://www.gadcotimes.com/content/gems-reading-scores-among-state%E2%80%99s-highest <img src="http://www.gadcotimes.com/sites/www.gadcotimes.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/0526_gems.jpg" alt="Dena Brockman, far right, poses with her class of Gadsden Elementary Magnet School third-graders, in which 92 percent of her students scored at least a three out of five on the state’s reading exam." title="Dena Brockman, far right, poses with her class of Gadsden Elementary Magnet School third-graders, in which 92 percent of her students scored at least a three out of five on the state’s reading exam." align="left" hspace="6" /><p> Third-graders at Gadsden Elementary Magnet School and Stewart Street Elementary passed the state&rsquo;s reading test at a rate far above the state&rsquo;s 54 percent.<br /> However, the rest of the county&rsquo;s third-graders came in below the state average.<br /> East Gadsden High School Class of 2016 graduates to surrounded by family, friends http://www.gadcotimes.com/content/east-gadsden-high-school-class-2016-graduates-surrounded-family-friends <img src="http://www.gadcotimes.com/sites/www.gadcotimes.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/0526_eghs_graduation_002.jpg" alt="Gadsden County Superintendent of Schools Reginald James, pictured at right, standing, speaks Saturday, May 20, during the graduation ceremony for East Gadsden High School’s Class of 2016. Find more coverage of local high-school graduations inside this edition. " title="Gadsden County Superintendent of Schools Reginald James, pictured at right, standing, speaks Saturday, May 20, during the graduation ceremony for East Gadsden High School’s Class of 2016. Find more coverage of local high-school graduations inside this edition. " align="left" hspace="6" /> West Gadsden High School grads urged to find their greatness http://www.gadcotimes.com/content/west-gadsden-high-school-grads-urged-find-their-greatness <img src="http://www.gadcotimes.com/sites/www.gadcotimes.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/0526_wghs_graduation_002.jpg" alt="West Gadsden High School’s Class of 2016 celebrate during the graduation ceremony Friday, May 20, in the school’s gym. " title="West Gadsden High School’s Class of 2016 celebrate during the graduation ceremony Friday, May 20, in the school’s gym. " align="left" hspace="6" /><p> West Gadsden High School graduates of the Class of 2016 celebrated the ending of their high-school careers in the school&rsquo;s packed gym Friday evening surrounded by family and friends.<br /> In addition to thanking their parents and teachers for assisting them through their matriculation, valedictorian Allison Avelar and salutatorian Evelin Tomas encouraged their fellow graduates to continue striving for success and happiness, or as Tomas said, &ldquo;keep on swimming.&rdquo;<br /> Thronging to Quincyfest http://www.gadcotimes.com/content/thronging-quincyfest <img src="http://www.gadcotimes.com/sites/www.gadcotimes.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/0512_qf_segwayc.jpg" alt="Much of Courthouse Square in downtown Quincy became a pedestrian zone Saturday for Quincyfest. This year the event, presented by Quincy Main Street, brough out young and old to enjoy the live music and dance, vendor merchandise and tempting treats. A children’s activity area, including a drumming circle, drew the younger set to play. Pictured here, many Quincyfest visitors took the opportunity to ride Segways through the streets of Downtown Quincy. " title="Much of Courthouse Square in downtown Quincy became a pedestrian zone Saturday for Quincyfest. This year the event, presented by Quincy Main Street, brough out young and old to enjoy the live music and dance, vendor merchandise and tempting treats. A children’s activity area, including a drumming circle, drew the younger set to play. Pictured here, many Quincyfest visitors took the opportunity to ride Segways through the streets of Downtown Quincy. " align="left" hspace="6" width="128" height="85" /> A/C in the way OK in Quincy http://www.gadcotimes.com/content/ac-way-ok-quincy <p> Quincy commissioners saved the Men of Action a $5,000 headache when they granted the nonprofit a license agreement authorizing the organization to keep their air conditioners situated on a piece of city property near the organization&rsquo;s<br /> headquarters.<br /> Men of Action&rsquo;s backing financial institution had notified the nonprofit that the equipment encroachment into city property created a risk that could require the city to ask the nonprofit to move the air conditioner any time.<br /> Midway leaders mull party problems http://www.gadcotimes.com/content/midway-leaders-mull-party-problems <img src="http://www.gadcotimes.com/sites/www.gadcotimes.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/_0512_midwayk.jpg" alt="Midway City Council members meet Thursday, May 5. " title="Midway City Council members meet Thursday, May 5. " align="left" hspace="6" width="127" height="85" /><p> Although they didn&rsquo;t make any decisions at their May meeting this past Thursday, Midway council members entertained the most recent city news and citizen opinion on a Sunday park party causing controversy in the city.<br /> City Manager Auburn Ford announced the city had been one of only five in the state to apply for housing applications through Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) and all the applicants had been selected. He said the city may receive up to $750,000 to help residents with housing problems and will begin finding residents for the program in June.<br /> Former state hospital resident gets 10 years for role in beating death http://www.gadcotimes.com/content/former-state-hospital-resident-gets-10-years-role-beating-death <img src="http://www.gadcotimes.com/sites/www.gadcotimes.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/0512_french_sentencec.jpg" alt="Deontra French stands before Judge Barbara K. Hobbs during his sentencing on Thursday, May 5. " title="Deontra French stands before Judge Barbara K. Hobbs during his sentencing on Thursday, May 5. " align="left" hspace="6" width="128" height="85" /><p> Former State Hospital resident Deontra French was sentenced to 10 years in prison Thursday afternoon, May 5, for his role in the beating death of another resident last February.<br /> After his time in prison, which will be commuted by 414 days for time served, French will be on probation for five years, ruled 2nd Judicial Circuit Court Judge Barbara K. Hobbs.<br /> Community group continues effort to improve life in Gadsden County http://www.gadcotimes.com/content/community-group-continues-effort-improve-life-gadsden-county <img src="http://www.gadcotimes.com/sites/www.gadcotimes.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/0512_step_up_gadsden.jpg" alt="Community members came together for the latest Step Up for Gadsden meeting to discuss how to improve local education, health, economic development, community safety and quality of life." title="Community members came together for the latest Step Up for Gadsden meeting to discuss how to improve local education, health, economic development, community safety and quality of life." align="left" hspace="6" width="128" height="85" /><p> More representatives from community agencies and concerned citizens connected Thursday evening as Step Up for Gadsden had its most recent meeting.<br /> The areas for improvement discussed were education, economic development, community safety, community-wide health and quality of life, with a room designated for the discussion of each. Attendees could attend two meetings and then the larger group reconvened to discuss the suggestions made for making achievement gaps in each topic.<br />