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Falling Profits at Post Co.: After a brutal third quarter last year, the Washington Post Company—which owns the Post—posted a 22 percent decline in profits in the fourth quarter of last year, reports the, uh, Post. Why so bad? The stricter rules regulating for-profit college recruitment, plus the bad press the Post Co.’s Kaplan for-profit was getting, led to a decline in enrollment by more than 20,000 students last year. Other areas of the company—like test prep—are holding steady, but advertising and circulation are down a bit for the Post itself. In light of all of this, the recent buyouts aren’t exactly a surprise. -3
Other Victims of HTJ’s Steal-From-The Children Scheme: More children, apparently. The D.C. Children and Youth Trust Corp.—the organization Harry Thomas, Jr. used to funnel hundreds of thousands of dollars back to himself—argues for its own continued existence with a $6,000 report detailing how funds for kids’ programs are declining. “It finds that funding for these ‘out-of-school time’ programs has dropped precipitously in the past four years. Certainly that’s not surprising given the budgetary pressures the city has faced, but the 44 percent drop since fiscal 2009 stands in stark contrast to the modest rise in the city’s local spending (from $5.5 billion to $5.6 billion) over that period, to say nothing of the 6.8 percent growth in the overall budget including federal funds.” Still, we must say that even if the Trust didn’t know what was going on with HTJ, it’s hard to, well, trust that they know how what’s best for kids. -3
NOROVIRUS WATCH 2012: Looks like some illness is hitting area schools. Intern Maya has the info: 85 confirmed cases at George Washington University and 40 unconfirmed cases of sickness at Howard University. She also notes: “Four years ago, more than 200 Georgetown University students were sickened by the virus, causing the cancellation of basketball games and the closure of dorms and dining halls.” So things aren’t as bad as they could be! +3
Capital City Chili Bowl: Apparently there could be new life in the recently shuttered Capital City Diner. Anthony Ulysses Holoman, the man who jumped ship from Ben’s Chili Bowl and plans to start his own chili and half-smoke enterprise, says he’s reached out to Cap City’s Matt Ashburn to see about taking over the space. Two great tastes that taste great together? +2
Yesterday’s Needle rating: 51 Today’s score: -1 Friday Bonus: +2 Today’s Needle rating: 52