District plans school closings

Citing its enormous budget woes, the Philadelphia School District acknowledged yesterday that it plans to close 13 schools for 1,800 high-school students who have either dropped out of school or are on the verge of doing so, the Inquirer reported.

The district has had contract with independent operators who ran the so-called "accelerated" programs for at-risk students.

A district spokeswoman told the Inquirer that programs would instead be offered to the struggling students at district high schools.

Slain teen was from Olney W.

An 18-year-old student who was shot and killed just after 9 p.m. Thursday on York Street near 5th in North Philadelphia was an Olney West High School senior, who was supposed to attend his prom last night.

Justin Reeves, of Sydenham Street near Hunting Park Avenue in Nicetown, was shot in the head and chest and pronounced dead by medics shortly afterward.

Police yesterday were still searching for his killer. Initial police reports said a person leaving the area was wearing red clothing and was last seen running east on York.

Police Chief Inspector Scott Small has said that in a preliminary investigation, detectives learned that the victim was known to frequent the area where he was gunned down, and it appears that the shooting might have been drug-related.

Killer of W. Philly man sought

Police yesterday were searching for a gunman who killed a 23-year-old man on Yewdall Street near Cedar Avenue in West Philadelphia about 1 a.m. yesterday.

The victim was identified as Calvin Edmonds, of Forrest Avenue near Cliveden Street, in Cedarbrook. He was pronounced dead at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania half an hour later. Police did not have a suspect or know of a motive for the shooting.

Post-election cleanup effort

Democratic sheriff nominee Jewell Williams and Councilman Bill Green are joining forces to rid the city of campaign literature from Tuesday's citywide primary election.

Williams is urging all candidates - even those who didn't win - join his 4-day Keepin' It Clean Posse to bring out their campaign workers and others to help in the effort.

"Candidates' campaign signage is all over the city," said Williams, who currently serves in the state House. Green added, "Now it's time for us to respect our constituents and neighborhoods by working just as hard to pick up after ourselves by cleaning up campaign literature."

Juniata fire delays traffic

Firefighters responded to a blaze on M Street near Luzerne at about 7 p.m., which temporarily shut down traffic on M Street between Luzerne and Lycoming in Juniata.

There were no reported injuries in the house fire, officials said, and neighbors said it was quickly brought under control.