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Kansas Schools Reopening | How Masks Protect Us | Language & Space Travel

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Andrew McKenzie, a linguistics professor at KU, says he anticipates language will evolve during generations-long, interstellar space travel in the future.

How Kansas is navigating the impending reopening of its public schools, when and why face masks protect us from coronavirus infection, and how language might evolve during interstellar space travel.

Segment 1, beginning at 4:09: How Kansas is preparing to reopen its public schools.

The Kansas State Board of Education put out a nearly 1,100-page guide to reopening schools for the 2020 academic school year. Meanwhile, Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly is expected to issue an executive order pushing the first day of school back until after Labor Day.

Segment 2, beginning at 25:03: The science behind face masks.

Four months into the pandemic, people are still debating the effectiveness of masks. But health experts say wearing a mask over your mouth and nose is essential to stopping the virus' spread.

Segment 3, beginning at 45:30: Will language evolve during deep space travel?

A University of Kansas professor recently co-wrote a paper about his expectations for language to change during interstellar space travel trips that take generations to complete. The conundrum could make it difficult for a ship's crew to communicate with humans back on Earth.

When I host Up To Date each morning at 9 a.m., my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. My email is steve@kcur.org.
The Kansas City region has long been a place where different ways of life collide. I tell the stories of people living and working where race, culture and ethnicity intersect. I examine racial equity and disparity, highlight the area's ethnic groups and communities of color, and invite all of Kansas City to explore meaningful ways to bond with and embrace cultures different from their own. Email me at luke@kcur.org.
Whether it’s something happening right now or something that happened 100 years ago, some stories don’t fit in the short few minutes of a newscast. As a podcast producer at KCUR, I help investigate questions and local curiosities in a way that brings listeners along for adventures with plot twists and thought-provoking ideas. Sometimes there isn’t an easy answer in the end – but my hope is that we all leave with a greater understanding of the city we live in. Reach me at mackenzie@kcur.org or find me on Twitter @_macmartin.