Dave DeWitt

Managing Editor

Dave DeWitt is WUNC's Managing Editor. As an editor, reporter, and producer he's covered politics, environment, education, sports, and a wide range of other topics.

He has filed storites for NPR’s news magazines as well as Marketplace and Only A Game. He formerly worked in college athletics, college admissions, and with the Tar Heel Sports Network. In 2001, he wrote the non-fiction book "True Blue".

 

Ways to Connect

UNC BOG Supports Thorp

Aug 12, 2011

UNC system leaders today expressed public support for UNC-Chapel Hill chancellor Holden Thorp. Thorp has been under fire from some alumni for firing football coach Butch Davis last month.

UNC system president Tom Ross and Board of Governors chair Hannah Gage released a statement this morning, reiterating their support for Thorp and his leadership of UNC-Chapel Hill.

Earlier this week, an alumni group threatened a lawsuit. They said they were misled into helping pay for a stadium expansion and were led to believe Davis would continue as coach.

Eagles Soar Into D1

Aug 12, 2011

The five-year wait is now over, and North Carolina Central is officially a member of the NCAA’s Division I.
 

The NC Central Board of Trustees voted back in 2005 to move from division 2 to division one. The move was somewhat controversial, as it meant the Eagles would no longer play in the popular CIAA basketball tournament.

The Eagles then played as an independent with no conference affiliation. Last year, NC Central was a provisional member of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference.

Perdue Pushes Pre-K

Aug 11, 2011

The state legislature may be out of session until September, but that hasn’t stopped Governor Bev Perdue from firing the latest shot in the fight over pre-k programs.

On Wednesday, Perdue issued an executive order that directs the Department of Health and Human Services to offer pre-K education to all eligible 4-year olds in the state.

She says that will put North Carolina in compliance with a ruling last month by superior court judge Howard Manning. Last year, about 32,000 4-year olds were enrolled in More At Four. About double that many qualified.

Personal information on 1,800 school children was accidentally posted online by NC State researchers.

The security failure affected elementary students who attended Wilson and Richmond County schools from 2003 to 2006. The personal information posted online included names, dates of birth, and social security numbers.

A parent was the first to notice the error. NC State removed the data when it became aware of the situation late last month and has begun the process of trying to contact affected families.

North Carolina will be one of the states seeking a waiver from the Department of Education, exempting it from parts of No Child Left Behind. U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced this week that he will allow some states to opt out of the controversial education law.

State Superintendent June Atkinson says educators have become increasingly unhappy with No Child Left Behind's all-or-nothing system of judging schools.

Test Results Mixed

Aug 4, 2011

Another round of statewide test results came out on Thursday. More high school students are graduating, but more schools across North Carolina are falling further behind more challenging goals.

Withers Makes History

Jul 29, 2011
Everett Withers
TarHeelBlue.com

Everett Withers is the new interim head football coach at North Carolina. Withers, Chancellor Holden Thorp and athletic director Dick Baddour addressed the media earlier today.

Withers replaces Butch Davis, who was fired on Wednesday. Withers is the first African-American head football coach in school history - and just the second black head coach in any sport.

UNC-Chapel Hill has named Everett Withers as its new interim head football coach. Withers is a long-serving assistant and takes over for Butch Davis, who was fired by the university late Wednesday. Also this week, UNC's athletic director Dick Baddour announced he will be stepping down early.  education reporter Dave DeWitt sits down with David Brower to talk about the changes at Carolina.

Dick Baddour
TarHeelBlue.com

UNC-Chapel Hill chancellor Holden Thorp and athletic director Dick Baddour addressed the media on Thursday – less than 24 hours after firing football coach Butch Davis.

At the press conference, Baddour also announced that he would be stepping down in the coming months.
Baddour and Davis are the latest casualties in a year-long scandal that has moved beyond athletics and caused serious harm to the University’s reputation.

Davis Out At UNC

Jul 27, 2011
Butch Davis
UNC Athletics

Butch Davis has been fired as the head football coach at North Carolina. Chancellor Holden Thorp made the announcement Wednesday after meeting with the Board of Trustees.

The decision comes just one week before the Tar Heels are scheduled to start fall practice – and two days after Davis met with reporters at the ACC’s annual media day.

Duke, Wake Tech Honored

Jul 27, 2011
Wake Tech Community College
Wake Tech

Wake Tech and Duke University are two of the best higher education institutions at which to work. The national survey was conducted by the Chronicle of Higher Education.

Both schools are no strangers to being recognized as great places to work. Duke is making its fourth straight appearance on the annual list; Wake Tech is making its third.

Florida State has been picked to win the A-C football title this year. Media members made the Seminoles the favorite to win the championship over Virginia Tech.

The conference’s coaches are in Pinehurst today as part of the league’s media day. North Carolina’s Butch Davis spoke again about the scandal involving his program. He says the suspension of 14 players for all or part of last season brought the rest of the team together.

Local election season officially gets underway today. Candidates are able to file for election in both Wake and Durham.

The most crowded race is expected to be for Mayor of Raleigh. Incumbent Charles Meeker has announced he will not seek re-election. That has opened up the field to a number of candidates.

One of Raleigh's oldest colleges is making some major changes. Peace College will change its name to William Peace University and admit men for the first time.

The changes are being made to strengthen a college that has taken its lumps of late. Earlier this year, Peace eliminated its music department and laid off a number of faculty members.

The decision to admit men is the latest and most significant change in the school's recent history. In the 1970s the school became a junior college and in the 1990s it awarded its first four-year degree.

School districts released preliminary results on Adequate Yearly Progress today. And the results, as usual, are mixed.

It’s been a difficult off-season for fans of NC State’s men’s basketball team. Alumnus Sidney Lowe was forced to resign as head coach in March. And last month, another former star, Lorenzo Charles, died in a bus accident.

On the court, the Wolfpack is trying to find its way under a new head coach. Mark Gottfried says he’s taking the team’s rebuilding effort one step at a time.

A ruling by a State Superior court judge has revived the battle over the state budget.

Food truck operators who hope to sell their creations in downtown Raleigh will soon know their fate. The City Council is set to vote today on a set of restrictions that will let them operate in the capital city. The public rift between food truck operators and bricks and mortar restaurant owners has been going on for more than a year. Some restaurant owners see food trucks as unfair competition. They say they pay high rents and property taxes, and fear that food trucks will set up outside their doors and siphon off customers.  Mike Stenke owns the Klausie's Pizza truck.

A federal prosecutor has charged a former administrator at UNC-Charlotte with falsifying visa records so that international students could stay in the country illegally.

A successful teaching recruitment program is ending after 25 years. The North Carolina Teaching Fellows program provided scholarships to the best and brightest prospective teachers.

UNC-Chapel Hill is taking the largest budget cut in the university system. Chapel Hill will receive 18 percent less funding from the state this year.

Map Draws Ire, Praise

Jul 8, 2011

Every ten years, a state legislative committee draws up new maps for Congressional districts, as well as for state senate and representative.
And every ten years, those who draw up the maps call them fair, while their political opponents cry gerrymandering. It seems to happen here more than anywhere. Many analysts and political watchers call North Carolina the most gerrymandered state in the country.

People across the state will have a chance to speak out on the latest Congressional redistricting map. Public hearings are being held today in 7 locations.

Since it was released late Friday, the map has generated more than a little partisan political bickering. Republicans are calling it fair; Democrats say it’s gerrymandering at its worst. State Senator Bob Rucho is the chair of the legislative committee that drew the map. He says this redistricting process has been much more open than in years past.

Burke County High Schools in western North Carolina will continue to be on probation. The decision by AdvancEd means the district avoids losing accreditation.

Player Sues UNC

Jul 5, 2011
Michael McAdoo
TarHeelBlue.com

A UNC Chapel Hill football player is suing the university in an attempt to be reinstated to the team.

A year ago, Michael McAdoo was a promising defensive end for the Tar Heels football team. But like 13 other teammates, he was swept up in a scandal involving benefits from an agent and academic misconduct. Seven players, including McAdoo, were suspended for the season. Earlier today, McAdoo’s attorneys filed a suit in Durham County Superior Court against UNC-Chapel Hill, saying he was improperly and unjustly suspended. McAdoo was found guilty by the university’s student honor court of one infraction of receiving improper academic benefits from a tutor. He was suspended from the school for one semester, but allowed to return this summer. The lawsuit seeks reinstatement to the team and also to prevent the NCAA from interfering. A hearing on that request will be heard on July 15th.

Atlantis
NASA

Area scientists are in Florida this week readying experiments that will go on the final shuttle launch.

Ted Bateman first worked on space experiments as an undergraduate student 20 years ago. Now, he’s an associate professor in rehabilitation engineering in the joint department of biomedical engineering at UNC-Chapel Hill and NC State.

Major crimes, like homicides and robberies, are way down in Raleigh. The number of homicides fell from 35 two years ago to 14 in 2010.

City officials are crediting efforts in “community policing” in 2009 for the decrease. It involves increased foot patrols, juvenile programs, and specially-trained officers.

Another part of the community policing strategy is to increase enforcement of lesser crimes, like prostitution and drug offenses, before they lead to major crimes. Prostitution arrests rose from 64 in 2008 to 239 last year.

The driver of the tractor-trailer involved in yesterday's multi-vehicle crash on I-40 has been arrested on multiple charges. Three people died in the accident.

Governor Bev Perdue has now made decisions on all the bills on her desk. Perdue vetoed four bills before last night's midnight deadline.

If you're keeping score, that's 15 vetoes for the Governor this legislative session. The latest group includes a bill that would have allowed more exploration of offshore oil drilling. It also would have allowed hydraulic fracking, a controversial method of natural gas extraction.

A state audit has revealed further details of financial mismanagement at NC Central University. The report shows that the director of the Historically Minority Colleges and Universities Consortium diverted more than a million dollars to a secret fund only she controlled.

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