Friday Morning: Charter Schools, Transgender Rights

Published February 18, 2011

Good morning! Do you have plans for the long weekend?

The state schools chief endorsed 17 new charter schools, including 10 in Boston.

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston may sell seven former churches — churches that parishioners are still not willing to give up. The archdiocese is hearing public comment.

Gov. Deval Patrick signed an executive order banning discrimination against transgender people in state government.

Reactions are mixed to Patrick’s ambitious plan to make health care more affordable in Mass.

Tufts Medical Center CEO Ellen Zane is stepping down after seven years. She is credited with pulling the hospital back from the brink. Another CEO who thwarted the collapse of another Boston hospital, Paul Levy of Beth Israel Deaconess, resigned last month.

The Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks hate groups, says anti-government “Patriot” groups are on the rise, especially here in New England.

New Hampshire is the latest New England state in which the legality of gay marriage is in question. Conservative lawmakers there want to repeal it.

Support is pouring in for a statue of Celtics legend Bill Russell, two days after President Obama called on Boston to build one. Mayor Tom Menino says it’s not a matter of if, but where.

The hugely popular Boston Marathon is making it six minutes harder to qualify next year.