WQCH and Georgia 93.7 Local News Headlines 10-20-23

Rainfall in Walker County was 2.8 inches below normal.  2023 was the 7th driest September on record over the past 129 years.  Walker County is in a severe drought.  The drought is expected to continue through October.  With a drought comes brush fires.  None reported in Walker County but Whitfield County has been battling a blaze this week and fire crews in Dade County have been able to contain a brush fire on Back Valley Road.  No structures were involved in the fire.  
Georgia Labor Commissioner Bruce Thompson announced today that Georgia’s September unemployment rate increased to 3.4 percent, up one-tenth from a revised 3.3 percent in August. The unemployment rate was four-tenths lower than the national average.
Three school years after classrooms shut their doors in March 2020 following the initial outbreak of COVID-19, Georgia students remain behind in phonics compared to children in other states, according to education company Curriculum Associates.  The percentage of students on grade level dropped nationwide among all levels of median income after the pandemic, but the effect was more pronounced in districts with lower median incomes.  State education leaders have already announced plans aimed at further closing learning gaps, including new tutoring resources through AmeriCorps and Georgia Virtual Learning, as well as the formation of a 30-member Georgia Council on Literacy.
The LaFayette Volleyball team picked up a four set victory over Lumpkin County in the opening round of the state playoffs.  LaFayette will host the Sweet 16 on Saturday.  High School Football last night LaFayette scored a win over LFO 34-21.