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News at Noon: No Child Left Behind gets a revamp; Farmer Dave's indoor garden; Hillary Clinton in Florida; 'Kinky Boots' review

Under LED lights farmer Dave Smiles of Uriah's Urban Farms checks on his plants in the farm's nursery room in their new building in Tampa. Smiles or "Farmer Dave" has spent his career building up: He is one of the country's experts on urban vertical farming.  On July 27 he moved into  larger building. Already one of the country's top four producing farms per square foot, this new venture (with sales to restaurants, wholesalers and now directly to customers via subscription) is a window into the changing face of American agriculture.  The LED's produce very little heat and use a fraction of the electricity that traditional light that are used to grow plants. [SKIP O'ROURKE | Times]

Under LED lights farmer Dave Smiles of Uriah's Urban Farms checks on his plants in the farm's nursery room in their new building in Tampa. Smiles or "Farmer Dave" has spent his career building up: He is one of the country's experts on urban vertical farming. On July 27 he moved into larger building. Already one of the country's top four producing farms per square foot, this new venture (with sales to restaurants, wholesalers and now directly to customers via subscription) is a window into the changing face of American agriculture. The LED's produce very little heat and use a fraction of the electricity that traditional light that are used to grow plants. [SKIP O'ROURKE | Times]

The House was ready to vote Wednesday on a long-sought rewrite of the 2002 No Child Left Behind education law that would roll back the federal government's authority to push academic standards and tell schools how to improve. Read how it will affect students on different grade levels.

Farmer Dave Smiles, 38, has spent his whole life planting, growing, making decisions based on his green thumb. Now, those decisions don't have to include whether his crops grow horizontally or vertically, outside or inside. Learn about Dave and "the future of food."

After engineers discovered a 90-foot-deep sinkhole near Lutz, the entirety of Lake Park off Dale Mabry Highway has been closed.

Hillary Clinton winds up a two-day fundraising swing through Florida today with a rare public Florida campaign event in Orlando. The "Hillary for Orlando Grassroots Event" is scheduled for 1 p.m., but the voter outreach effort is clearly a secondary priority to raising campaign dough from Floridians.

After three-and-a-half years of intense personal combat, Republican Sen. Joe Negron of Stuart will be designated as the next president of the Florida Senate this afternoon in Tallahassee. A West Palm Beach native, Negron was elected to the House in 2000 and to the Senate in 2009. He has focused his leadership on the budget and civil liberties issues at the Capitol.

Is Tampa Bay doing a good job of supporting entrepreneurship and innovative business start-ups? A new effort may shed some critical light on how the regional "entrepreneurial ecosystem" works and whether there are some key gaps that need attention.

Kinky Boots, the Straz's new musical, may be more about shoes and sparkle than plot. The show is a mostly lighthearted effort to extend gender fluidity to everyone, embodied in song lyrics to "just be."

Read our review of Room — a startling movie experience, peculiar in setting and profoundly simple. It's a story of love born out of unseen horror, of nurture conquering nature. Room must be felt to be believed.

Last month, we asked readers if they had any memories to share about the now demolished St. Petersburg Pier. We could never have expected the subsequent outpouring of responses, from big moments like engagements and weddings to intimate moments like family picnics.

New York electro-pop duo MS MR are coming to St. Petersburg to film a travel series and give a free concert downtown. Learn more about this group and their local appearances this week.

News at Noon is a weekday feature from tampabay.com. Check in Monday through Friday for updates and information on the biggest stories of the day.

News at Noon: No Child Left Behind gets a revamp; Farmer Dave's indoor garden; Hillary Clinton in Florida; 'Kinky Boots' review 12/02/15 [Last modified: Wednesday, December 2, 2015 12:38pm]
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