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Relieved to catch up with each other on the other side, they both faced the steep climb up the very exposed Goutier Ridge. At 11am both men were sitting on top of the world, embracing each-others experiences while trying to soak in the views and emotions of their achievements. To summit Mount Blanc at any time of year is an achievement, however to do with no alpine mountaineering experience is really tough, and at 68 is both very physically and mentally demanding. To live to 95? The plan is to Live Meath native. Would an 11 year old taking part in High Point Ireland's 10,m Challenge to fundraise for Barretstown be "an unusual and exciting or daring experience"?

In Dillon went on to triple the 10,m total while completing over 70 unique highpoints around Ireland, often completing more than one per adventure and even completing 6 on one outing. Kieron Gribbon's websites highpointireland. Initiatives other than the 10,m challenge that keep Dillon interested are, Ireland High Points Week and the many lists and sub lists on Kieron's websites.

Dillon will be signing up again for and plans are been made already for another great year. On top of this Dillon writes about all the adventures on his own Blog while he sells advertising space on the blog to aid with the fundraising. Dillon also completed the 10,m Challenge in in aid of Mountain Rescue Ireland while the previous year Dillon became the youngest person to climb to the highest point of the 32 Counties of Ireland.

A family that hikes together stays together and this family have really put a new spin on less than three soon to be four there should never be. An inspiration to anyone and proof that there are no better people to share the wilds of the Ireland with than those you love most. The 32 peak challenge sees participants take on the highest peak in each county and to date Gina and her entourage have completed 29 of these. The first 24 was completed with a party of 3, however the last 5 of the she collected an extra hitch hiker and with baby no. Coordinating yourself can be an adventure at the best of times, coordinating a multi activity expedition from Galway to Greenland is another world of coordination.

To gather a group of like minded individuals to kayak, climb and explore Northern Greenland inside the arctic circle takes a set of unique leadership skills. The kayakers did an unsupported km 14 day kayak down the coast, dodging icebergs and camping on the edge of the land. The climbers put up a couple of first ascents on some unclimbed rock walls. Inspired to take on the unknown and a simple desire to visit a wild place before it was gone, the crew essentially did it all for the love of adventuring for adventurers sake.

Prior to the 3 month trip itself there were 9 months of methodical planning and preparation to ensure nothing was left to chance. Although there were low points like on-deck morale, spicy sailing weather in both directions and small confined ship spaces, the high over-shadowed them. Jamie Young is one such man, the Killary Adventure Centre creator took his vision to the seas on a 3 month Expedition which passed off without serious incident.

An example of how expeditions should be run from 12 months of planning and preparation and 3 months of execution it was a worthy endeavour. Spending 2 months in 24 hour day and everything that came with it nothing can be boiled down to one moment, although watching breaching humpback whales amongst icebergs and kayaking through icebergs the size of Westport one would presume are pretty special moments. After near death experience from drowning when she was younger, Fiona had a fear of the sea which meant she had rarely ever been paddling on it, in fact this meant she only paddled on the sea 3 times before she left.

Her journey started off form the west coast of Cornwall, then over to Lundy Island, followed by Pembrokeshire before paddling across the Irish Sea to Rosslare and up the Irish east coast. In all the expedition took 81 days and couldn't have been done without an amazing crew of people supporting her along the way all of whom were found through Facebook! Why walk when you can run? First person to run the full length of the Irish coast to coast hiking trail. His passion to complete the run was not a selfish one, inspired by his loving bitch Mary his dog who he met at the dog pound and witnessing the lasting effects animal cruelty on her, his hope was to raise funding and awareness for the ISPCA.

With limited budget his support crew was his wife and rescue dog Mary who followed him in their van where he also slept at night. It was an amazing intro into both trail and ultra-running and he reckons he have definitely caught the bug for it now.

Physical Habitat

Over the course of the km he covered the elevation of one and a half times the height of Everest, not too shabby for man who only took up nine month prior to hitting the road. His main passion is cycling, however after investing in a pair of Salomon Speedcross 4 runners he figured he put them to good use and not just a fashion statement. A month after he got married, the honeymoon was well and truly over for Alan Judge as this passionate kayaker underwent his second open heart surgery.

It was a storm he and his wife Christina would weather together. Not long after surgery and still very much in recovery mode, Alan's biggest question was - "When can I get back into my kayak? After a long year on the road to recovery Alan was able to manage paddling for 30 minutes but would need a whole day to recover afterwards and he persevered to keep pushing himself through the pain. Three years after open-heart surgery Alan was working as a support kayak guide in Nepal. Opportunities like these come only a few times in a lifetime and Alan lives every day with kayaking on his mind and plans for more adventures.

Alan is now on blood thinners warfarin for life because he is fitted with a mechanical heart valve. The warfarin prevents blood clots on the valve potentially causing a stroke, however this means any big bangs, wallops cuts make him susceptible to bleeding out or the risk of a clot travelling to the brain. Also he needs to know how to manage diet, medication and be able to self test like a diabetic.

To see that a young person can keep having these amazing adventures and create these levels of fitness regardless for themselves. He is truly grateful for donors, surgery teams, family and most importantly loved ones. He has been on a tough journey one both personally and physically. Fast forward 3 years after he went under the knife and after a long painful and exhausting recovery, Alan is invited to be a support guide for a commercial trip to Nepal for three weeks. On the 4th anniversary of his surgery he would fly from Dublin to Dubai and on to Kathmandu.

Along his journey he saw children breaking rocks for construction, funeral piars lit along the river banks as bodies were returned to the sacred waters. He stayed with Nepali families and paddled on multi day self support trips and those experiences are hard to put into words as I wasn't there. The journey required a lot of preparation and training before being able to commit to it.

Working with the local communities rather than the guided trips they were able to have a unique adventure on a shoestring. After losing two close friends in separate incidents in tragic circumstances while they were abroad and dealing with his own mental health demons from his youth - Michael Quinn set off on to challenge himself on the hike of a lifetime.

Starting at Beara Way in Co. The km Ireland Way was his call to adventure, it was so far out of his comfort zone it truly was the challenge he needed. Having never walked more than 2 days in a row, Michael walked 1,km from the Beara Peninsula to the Giants Causeway. He faced challenges such as having never done a multi-day hike before, never fundraised before physical exertion on the body blisters, blisters and more blisters.

After starting in the Beara Peninsula he had to get over 3 mountains in 4 days with a 16kg pack and by day 5 his biggest lesson had been learned and he got the pack down to 13kg. His ambition to keep his supports always up to date with his progress meant learning on the job vlogging where filming and hiking were one on a hell of a balancing act and baptism of fire while also making room in my pack all his camera equipment. There are many fields, mountains, and woods on the Ireland Way but also roads Every day was started a battle with his mental fatigue and at certain stages every step he took a lot of self-convincing.

This forced him to both ask and accept help with was a massive thing for his personal mental development. Having always liked hiking but having never done it two days in a row never mind km the challenge was set. However, this wasn't just a challenge, due to his past this became massively symbolic as he saw it as his initiation into both adulthood and manhood.

Over the 50 days it took to complete the hike, Michael found both anguish and enlightenment with ever step he took. His journey took through an ever changing environment and scenery of the beautiful Irish landscape while encountering the amazing people who inhabit it were just some of the highs. His lows were battling with the anguish of his inner daemons, the reality of maybe not finishing a tribute to his beloved friends while trying to finish his own personal journey of transitioning from adolescence into adulthood. Then the physical pain of blisters was the not so gentle reminder of his mammoth task was ahead which began to kick in on only day 5.

John Kenny is not your average preacher, this man in black is an avid outdoor enthusiast and petrol head all rolled into one. His unique style in cars coupled with his love for the outdoors is one where you will rarely see his Mini-Cooper Adventure without a SUP strapped to the roof roaring its way to the beach.

Trendy as he was baptised during his early years working in the west coast, has been on many adventure both on land and on water. His work ethic knows no bounds and his heart is as big if not bigger than his adventures. The Adventurous Preacher. His recent adventure took on the shape of cycling to Croagh Patrick, climbing the holy mountain and then doing what he loves most paddling in Clew Bay, all followed by a party Not satisfied to party on his own, so he brought everyone else along for the journey and made the event in aid of Pieta House.

The route involved a 20km leisurely cycle from Westport to Croagh Patrick and back again Pedal , a 3 hour hike up and down Croagh Patrick Pilgrimage , followed by an afternoon trying kayaking, canoeing and Stand Up Paddle Boarding on the sea at Murrisk Abbey Paddle before finally cycling back to Westport we regrouped for some dancing and socializing Party.

The event was not a race! It was non-competitive and the participants could take part in some or all of the activities. Starting the day at 8am cycling to Murrisk for breakfast in a hay shed behind Campbell's Pub. Participants join John to climbed The Reek for Mass on the summit. Then it was time to head out on to the sea at full tide, paddling around the inlet at Murrisk Abbey. Finally John leads the way by cycling back to Westport where everyone gets together again for a party at 9.

His on-going work sees this man of the cloth always out and about mingling with anyone and everyone. Keep your eyes out on all media outlets and on the roads of Ireland and if you spot a Mini-Cooper with a 11foot SUP on it be sure to give him a wave. Damian Browne is one such Salty-Dog who did just that. A nonswimmer - who rowed the Atlantic! To further test his metal and add turmoil, he endures a blow-back of 1. And this is what it was like by Day2!!!

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Was this going to keep happening? If so how many extra miles would he had to endure? And by the end of the journey the adversities were really stacking up. Wake up calls consisted of sweet alarms going beep beep to being flung out of his slumber head first into the walls of the cabin, resulting in facial lacerations and bruising. A bitter sweet reminder of injuries from his rugby past one can only imagine. Recalling the moment he feared would come to past, the white cap a massive wave breaking onto the boat caught Damian eye a he glanced over his shoulder.

He knew this is it, his biggest fear had become a reality as the boat spun degrees.

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Once the boat had righted itself, the feeling of relief must have been surreal. Only six hours in to his km journey his limits were on the verge of breaking after being hit with seasickness, calicoes on his hands and feet as well as diarrhoea. It was at this point Damian struggled with something far worse than a physical attack on his body, the demons of his mind; does he lie-down and rest and lose vital hours and nautical miles or does he suck it up and persevere on. Moments like this defined his race.

In the words of Eric Thomas…. From sea sickness, calicoes hands and feet, capsizing drills near death drills to sores the size of tennis ball on his butt from 12hours a day rowing, Damian made it to the other side of the Atlantic.

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After 64 long hard fought days at seas his believes to be always in the present, control what you can control and never give up. The Force was strong with young Jedi so he and his brother packed up the sea-kayaks and headed for the coast of Kerry, to paddle to Skellig Michael. Two adventureous sea-kayaking novices brave the sea's around the iconic Skelligs in search of adventure.

Their lowest point was waking up at 2 am and loading the sea area forecast, a small craft warning and gale working was not the ideal conditions the had hoped before the journey had even begun. The night before setting off their tent was complacently blown over and Paul was sure they would have to abandon the mission.

Rode to Recovery

They started the paddle anyway and about 10 meters in our Hans Solo lived up to his name say Paul, capsizing and falling out of his kayak. Scared but not deterred the pair continued on once he got back in his boat. These spectacular islands attract thousands of visitors from around the world every year, made even more famous by the visit of Luke Skywalker and the Star-Wars franchise.

After training all summer by doing shorter trips to places like the Aran Islands, Insishmurray and under the Cliffs of Moher; Paul and his brother Hans Solo, set off in their aptly named kayaks the Millennium Falcon and the Death Star in search of adventure. Then as they were passing little Skellig the water got very choppy once again Hans, not one to disappoint turbulent waters, capsized again but thank god he rolled.

The duo had an easier trip home, with the wind on their back and sun in their hair. Staying overnight on the Island the highlight was watching the sun set over Kerry from the skelligs, it something they will never forget. The worlds most remote open water swim?

Off Cape Horn. Cape Horn is the southernmost headland of the Tierra del Fuego archipelago of southern Chile, and is located on the small Hornos Island. The reality of the remote location, the emotion of the water was so dark and changed so much and we were 24 hrs from the nearest anything -the lighthouse keeper and his family even get their appendix out before coming down so they don't have to taken out!!!

The biggest challenge was the emotional side-trust, stress, anxiety, nutrition, breathing in the cold air and waves height, the lighthouse keeper gives the final go ahead on location because of the dangers of the waters-a few minutes before the swim he radioed and said that her zodiac could not come into the water with her and her rescue crew. If Nuala wanted to swim this far south of Cape Horn she would have to go alone with her command vessel following off her and as you can imagine this was not part of her plan!!! Swimming south of Cape Horn was in her head since but life's pressures took over and priorities changed.

For most this would mean survival but for Nuala, it Excitement and Adventure. After 6 years competing in the Ice —it was time for a new challenge….

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Cape Horn Swim. Trusting in the process of months if not years of hard work and dedication was the emotional strength Nuala knew she had what it takes to let go and take on this swim. The knowledge that her family, a proud fishing one would be so proud of her to have the strength mentally and physically to take on these conditions.

She was finally being able to release all the emotions once she heard the engines of the command boat coming towards her, this compounded the fact that the planning and sacrifices she had made had finally paid off. Duane Phillips is the lone Wolf who did just that. Travelled the Wild Atlantic Way - by push scooter.

The real challenge above everything was training for such an epic journey, for the actual trip he was going to have to cover a minimum of 80 km per day. The furthest Duane ever kicked over consecutive days prior to this adventure was km over a weekend other than that he was averaging about 50 km two nights a week on an unladen footbike. When he hit the road from Kinsale he still doubted whether he could make it past three or four days.

Of 40 days of pushing, only 3 were dry and the wind was always the wrong direction. Not wearing rain gear wasn't too much of an issue at the beginning of the trip as the air temperature was fairly high and as long as he kept moving and maintained a good body temperature. This complacency nearly took it's toll and approaching Sligo Duane ended on the edge of hypothermia. After 40 days and 40 nights on the road, it was a journey of biblical proportions, a bit of a midlife crisis, the Irish Wolfer was hoping for some kind of epiphany! A road to Damascus moment that would give him an indication of where to go next with his life, instead it rained every day and he got Noah's flood!

The highs far outweighed the lows and after day four the realisation that he had the strength and sheer bloody mindedness to complete the journey set this Wolf on a massive high. The trip gave him a great faith in the kindness of strangers and a realisation that the road would always provide for him.

The icing on the cake for the whole trip was his father riding 14 hours on his motorbike from Manchester and battling his way through some pretty adverse weather conditions to see me cross the finish line in Muff where they were downed pint or two…. Vanessa swapped paint brushes for swim goggles to take on and become the first person to swim the length of Lough Mask Co.

First person to swim the length of Lough Mask Co. Supported by her former colleagues from Petersbourgh Outdoor Education Centre Clonbur Vanessa was able to call in the cavalry to paddle alongside as her safety crew. Vanessa is better known for her artwork on water than her adventures gliding through it, however now she has put this to bed in her build up to swim the English Channel. Team GFY is a 4-person team who have now completed 3 of their four challenges by climbing the highest county tops of each province in 24hours.

While some states have made progress in addressing disparities within states, unequal access still exists within states. At the same time, inequities are greatest across states lines, as per-pupil spending across states varies dramatically. Although school finance advocates and policymakers often compare spending between the poorest and wealthiest districts within a state, the differences in district-level spending across states are far starker.

These extreme spending inequities have an impact, and a large body of research suggests that money does matter in education. When school districts spend money wisely, they have better outcomes, including higher test scores, increased graduation rates, and other improved indicators of student achievement. This has clear implications for the public school system, as students who do not get their fair share of dollars do not get an equal chance to compete with their more advantaged peers.

For instance, according to a recent National Bureau of Economic Research NBER study, state fiscal reforms have had a positive impact on student outcomes—particularly among low-income students. In fact, the study found that spending increases improved high school graduation rates among low-income students and increased their adulthood earnings by 10 percent.

Note that, when it comes to policy approaches, foundation plans are most similar to an adequacy framework—a point explored in greater detail below. Another recent NBER study confirmed this idea that fiscal reforms in adequacy cases have led to more progressive funding systems and increased student outcomes. These reforms also contributed to student gains in reading and mathematics, with the largest increases among low-income students.

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Relatedly, beginning in , a decline in public spending on education has negatively affected student outcomes. During the Great Recession, state and district funding for public education declined dramatically. Kirabo Jackson, a professor of human development and social policy at Northwestern University, asserts that the decline in National Assessment of Educational Progress NAEP scores in and is tied to the decline in education spending following the Great Recession.

Inequities go beyond money. Core services, which make a huge difference in instructional quality and student performance, are systematically unavailable to students in low-income schools relative to students in higher-income schools. Put simply, school funding debates must go beyond the raw numbers and evaluate whether students have equitable access to the resources needed for success, including early childhood education, quality teachers, and exposure to challenging curriculum.

Early childhood education is a critical tool to level the playing field for students in poverty who generally start school academically behind their more affluent peers. For example, some studies suggest that, compared with their higher-income peers, low-income students start school with a smaller vocabulary. Yet students in poverty are less likely to attend preschool programs. The effectiveness and experience of teachers also have a pronounced impact on instructional quality. No other in-school factor has as significant an impact on student achievement as the teacher at the front of the room.

In Washington, D. Higher-poverty schools also have fewer experienced teachers and greater teacher turnover. Rigorous curriculum can significantly increase academic outcomes and prepare students for college and the workforce. Fifty-three percent of low-income students graduate high school without college or career preparatory coursework, compared with 44 percent of their affluent peers.

In some states, such as New York, the issue is particularly pressing.

e-book Rode to Recovery – (Meta) Physical Meanderings

Studies by the federal government demonstrate that the unequal access to rigorous courses is a national problem. Data from the school year show that high schools with higher percentages of black and Latino students offer math and science courses at a lower rate relative to all high schools. The difference is greatest in terms of access to advanced mathematics, calculus, and physics.

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A study conducted in New York City examined the performance of students who previously struggled academically but were incorrectly placed on an instructional track intended for students with greater mathematical ability, finding that they performed well when placed in a rigorous instructional setting that held them to higher expectations. However, when placed on a high-achieving track, that same student had a 91 percent chance of completing two such classes.

Furthermore, an analysis of the cost of different interventions found that transitioning to higher-quality curriculum provides a higher return on investment than many other reforms—for example, almost 40 times the return of class-size reduction. Litigation has heightened awareness of the importance of fiscal equity in education and spurred necessary change in states across the country.

The U. Rodriguez by arguing that education was not a guaranteed federal right. Some litigants continue to attempt to overturn Rodriguez in order to establish a federal right to education, but until then, many advocates turn to the states. Numerous state courts have reinforced meaningful provisions in state constitutions and required legislative action to improve educational opportunities for all students. Advocates in various states have taken different approaches to advance equity—some with success and some with unintended outcomes.

The following section describes the decision in Rodriguez and examines examples of the different approaches that advocates have used to advance school finance reform within states. The authors highlight some of the unintended outcomes, as well as the most positive aspects of the remedies, in order to inform a new framework for a potential federal right moving forward. In Rodriguez, the plaintiffs argued that education was a fundamental interest under the U. Constitution because of its vital importance to both the right to vote and freedom of expression.

In other words, the plaintiffs contended that education was a constitutional right because a certain level of education is necessary for the proper exercise of these rights. Yet the Supreme Court decided that public education was not guaranteed by the federal Constitution. Instead, it found that education was an important but voluntary service provided by the government, arguing that while the Constitution does guarantee its citizens the right to vote, it does not guarantee that individuals should be able to exercise this right to the best of their abilities or at their highest potential.

The Supreme Court also found that the Texas approach was constitutional because it provided the bare minimum necessary. Brennan Jr. Marshall argued that the burden of proof fell on the state to show that funding disparities did not grossly affect the quality of education that students received. The debate around the federal right to education is ongoing. In recent years, litigants in multiple states have filed suits to overturn Rodriguez.

Similarly, in , a group of parents and students filed a federal lawsuit in Connecticut arguing that state laws systematically prevent some students from receiving minimally acceptable education. Two of the earliest and best-known instances of state equity cases occurred during the mids. Both cases resulted in victories: one in California Serrano v. Priest and the other in New Jersey Robinson v. Following these successes, equity cases were brought in virtually every state. As a result, resource differences among districts in some states have declined. However, in other states, equity cases have had a negative impact on total spending due to the narrow focus on ensuring parity among districts within a state.

In California, the Serrano cases provide the most notorious example. The frame of equalized funding pitted high- and low-wealth districts against each other.