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Need to Know

Candidates in the race for Rochester mayor are painting a picture of what city schools might look like under their administration. Now that we’ve heard some of their plans, we hear from the School Board President. On this edition of Need to Know, Van White weighs in on their proposals, the Superintendent and his vision for what’s next in city schools.

Also on the show, our relatively warm forecast this week doesn’t change the fact that Lake Ontario remains at record high levels. Great Lakes reporter/producer Veronica Volk shares the stories of those impacted, mounting fears and next steps.

And we’ll meet a Rochester high school student utilizing her own life experiences for the sake of racial tolerance and understanding. She’s the latest to join WXXI’s “Top of the Class” series on Need to Know.

Anti-Semitic incidents are up 86 percent in the U.S. compared to the same time last year. That’s according to the Anti-Defamation League, a civil rights organization. Some of those acts of hatred against American Jews took place right here in Rochester. A public discussion on these events and how to respond to them to create a more tolerant community is taking place with area leaders and residents. The effort is being led by the Holocaust, Genocide and Human Rights Project out of Monroe Community College. On this edition of Need to Know we discuss the causes of religious bigotry and local work to bring more acceptance to Rochester.

He says Rochester is experiencing “a legacy of failed progressive Democratic philosophies.” So how would Republican mayoral candidate Tony Micciche change that legacy if elected to Rochester’s top spot? His campaign is focused on Rochester City schools, what he calls “wasteful” and “redundant” business regulations and a public safety plan intended to reduce crime and improve police-community relations among other issues. The candidate in the race for Rochester mayor and Monroe County Legislator Tony Micciche joins this edition of Need to Know to make his case.

He’s the only Republican contender in the fight for Rochester’s next mayor. And he calls this election a “battle of philosophies.” Why Monroe County Legislator Tony Micciche believes he’s the only candidate who will bring real change to this city. He makes his case on this edition of Need to Know.

Also on the show, we look into what’s driving hate speech, religious bigotry, and racial violence. How can communities like Rochester respond? We’ll hear about a community effort to bring tolerance to our neighborhoods and our nation.

And we’ll meet one of the brilliant minds in our local medical community researching rare diseases to help find treatment and a cure.

From a “tiny homes” project for veterans to emergency centers within the four quadrants of the City of Rochester – the latest candidate to join the race for mayor is promising revitalization if elected. We’ll hear from retired teacher and education advocate Lori Thomas on her 6-step plan.

There’s some debate over America’s favorite pastimes, but dining out, is holding its own next to football and binge-watching TV shows. Helene Biandudi Hofer recently visited a restaurant in Rochester hoping to solve any debate over where to eat. As she learned this isn’t just any restaurant, but a place where dreams and a mean dish of jerk chicken are being made every day.

For some, traveling throughout Rochester using anything but a car is unthinkable. For others, it’s a necessity, a way of life or a hope. According to national surveys and studies, including one from the Brookings Institution, people want more walkable cities in the US. In addition, Brookings found more than half of millennials surveyed want to live places where they don’t need access to a car.

Examining transportation and mobility issues is the focus of a film series called Rochester Street Films. The first event in the series this year takes place on March 15 with a focus on: “Moving Beyond the Automobile.” On this edition of Need to Know, leaders from the non-profit Reconnect Rochester (producer of Rochester Street Films) and filmmakers involved in the educational movie series discuss their short films and the work needed to create a community connecting all people through a robust transportation network.

In the media world, journalists aim to cover the news, not become news. They work to gain trust and access to key sources and stories, not become barred and banned from voices the public needs to hear from. Restricting media outlets from access to politicians, law enforcement agents, education leaders and others is an ongoing problem for journalists, including those in the Rochester region. On this edition of Need to Know, Rochester journalists and news directors dig into the access issue beyond the headlines as of late.

On this edition of Need to Know, the college and career conversation is a big deal for young people leaving high school but for individuals with intellectual disabilities, there was a point in time when such conversations didn’t happen. However, gains are being made in part because of the Higher Education Opportunity Act and because of parents and advocacy groups fighting for better access to postsecondary education.

The race for Rochester’s next mayor kicks off as the first official contender enters the ring. On this edition of Need to Know we’ll learn what James Sheppard will bring to the table that he says Mayor Lovely Warren hasn’t.

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