United Nations agencies call for increased investment in education

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Oct. 5 (UPI) — Now is the time to reimagine education around the world to make it more equitable for everyone, several United Nations agencies and their partners said in a joint statement Monday celebrating World Teachers’ Day.

While the coronavirus pandemic has exacerbated inequities, the statement said teachers have led the way in innovation and creativity to serve students despite the limitations.

“In this crisis, teachers have shown, as they have done so often, great leadership and innovation in ensuring that #LearningNeverStops, that no learner is left behind,” said the statement from Audrey Azoulay of UNESCO, Guy Ryder of the International Labor Organization, Henrietta H. Fore of UNICEF and David Edwards of Education International.

The statement said teachers have “individually and collectively” worked to find solutions and create environments where students could learn safely during the pandemic.

“Their role advising on school reopening plans and supporting students with the return to school is just as important,” the statement said.

The United Nations said the pandemic forced the school closures for more than 90% of the student population globally. It said it has had “devastating consequences” for those living on the margins around the world.

“We now need to think beyond COVID-19 and work to build greater resilience in our education systems, so we can respond quickly and effectively to these and other such crises,” the joint statement said. “Without urgent action and increased investment, a learning crisis could turn into a learning catastrophe.”

The partners called on increased investments into education around the world, upgrading educational education opportunities globally and protecting the safety and wellbeing of educators.

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United Launch Alliance postpones spy satellite launch again

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ORLANDO, Fla., Sept. 28 (UPI) — United Launch Alliance postponed launch of a spy satellite for the U.S. Department of Defense on Monday due to lightning and stormy weather in the area near Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

The company’s powerful Delta IV Heavy rocket had been scheduled to carry the satellite aloft at 12:02 a.m. EDT Tuesday.

ULA set a new new launch time for 11:58 p.m. EDT Tuesday. A significant risk exists, however, that storms could postpone liftoff again, according to U.S. Space Force meteorologists.

The launch has been delayed by various woes besides Mother Nature.

On Aug. 29, controllers halted a launch three seconds before liftoff. The company blamed a faulty helium pressure regulator for that abort. The mission was further delayed due to a problem with a retractable support arm at the launch site, according to ULA.

The mission is to utilize a Delta Heavy rocket, which is a triple-core launcher that produces a collective 2.2 million pounds of thrust. That compares to SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy, the most powerful of today’s rockets, with 3.4 million pounds of thrust at liftoff.

The flight, called NROL-44, is to be the 12th launch of a Delta IV Heavy, which first was used in 2004, the company said.

The National Reconnaissance Office, the agency that oversees the launch, is part of the Defense Department. According to its mission statement, it is responsible for developing, launching and operating America’s reconnaissance satellites, along with data-processing facilities.

That data is used by the National Security Agency and National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency to produce photos, maps, reports and other tools for the president, Congress, national policymakers, warfighters and others.

The Delta IV Heavy, the fourth version of the workhorse Delta rocket, was developed to launch for the reconnaissance office, U.S. Space Force and