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macon.com Midday Update: Clayton County schools face hiring freeze, other cutbacks; surrogate grandmother feels fine after triplets; Jekyll Island opens new tower for bird watching

Clayton County schools face hiring freeze, other cutbacks

Officials say the Clayton County school system is considering a hiring freeze, fewer school renovations and other budget cuts after 3,000 students withdraw.

Because of fewer students, the district is slated to lose $10 million to $15 million in federal funding. The district also faces state budget cuts and adecline in property tax.

The students apparently left for private schools and public schools in neighboring counties after the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools revoked the district's accreditation effective Sept. 1.

Superintendent John Thompson said, "We're not out of the woods. We're facing some serious cuts. To have lost 3,000 students, that's a school district. It's going to be devastating."

Associated Press

Surrogate grandmother feels fine after triplets

An Ohio woman who gave birth to her own triplet grandchildren says she is feeling fine one month later.

Fifty-six-year-old Jaci Dalenberg of Wooster had to be closely monitored because of her age.

Dalenberg said Tuesday on ABC's "Good Morning America" that she was happy to serve as a surrogate to help her daughter.

The girls were delivered by Caesarean section on Oct. 11. They were more than two months premature and each weighed less than three pounds.

Daughter Kim Coseno says the babies are doing well.

The Cleveland Clinic says Dalenberg offered herself as a surrogate when Kim Coseno and her husband, Joe, were waiting to adopt. The couple used in vitro fertilization, and embryos were implanted in Dalenberg's uterus.

Associated Press

Jekyll Island opens new tower for bird watching

A new bird-watching tower on Jekyll Island is giving nature lovers a better view.

The tower stands 25-feet-tall, allowing bird watchers to look out over the treetops and surrounding marsh. The Jekyll Island Authority built the tower over the past three months. It opened to the public Monday.

Jekyll Island Authority executive director Jones Hooks says he hopes the bird-watching tower will become a major attraction for naturalists visiting the state park.Associated Press

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