I-295 N closed due to tractor-trailer accident; Game between UVA and VA Tech called off; The Henrico Schools deal with dropout rates

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) – Here’s a look at our top headlines for Tuesday!

I-295 North closed near Creighton Road

Due to an accident with a trailer truck on I-295 in Hanover, all northbound lanes are closed.

The accident happened near the Creighton Road exit, mile marker 33.

All northbound lanes are closed and drivers should expect delays. Traffic will be diverted from I-295 North to Exit 31A, the Highland Springs/Cold Harbor/Richmond International Airport exit.

Vigil for the Chesterfield family

On Friday morning, JoAnna Cottle and her three children – 13-year-old Kaelyn and 4-year-old twins Kinsey and Jayson – were shot dead at their home.

Loved ones gathered outside Salem Church Middle School last night to honor the lives that have been cut short.

JoAnna’s family members organized the vigil, including her cousin Stephen Bradshaw, who said he’s still trying to describe how this tragic loss feels.

“There are…there are no words,” Bradshaw said.

A funeral service for the family will be held at 12 noon next Tuesday at Destination Church in Prince George. The family says everyone is welcome to attend.

UVA vs. VA Tech game cancelled

This Saturday’s UVA soccer game against Virginia Tech is now cancelled.

This decision was made following a discussion between the ACC and the athletic departments of both schools.

It comes after the tragic deaths of Lavel Davis Jr., Devin Chandler and D’Sean Perry. They were shot while returning to campus from a field trip just over a week ago.

UVA previously canceled its game against Coastal Carolina.

Health Equity Group Makes Claims on Richmond Community Hospital

The group is calling on Richmond Community Hospital owners to take their profits from the 340b program and spend them on health equity in the city.

Richmond Community Hospital is accused of monetizing patients, according to a New York Times article.

Now the Richmond Coalition for Health Equity is demanding answers and accountability.

The group presented a list of seven demands.

One of them — for the hospital owners to take profits from the $340 billion program and spend them on health justice in the east city. This program addresses drug pricing to help hospitals in poor communities.

The group claims Bon Secours Mercy Health made big profits from it and the money goes to wealthier communities.

They say the hospital has actually scaled back its services, including closing its intensive care unit.

The hospital has denied the allegations and has not responded to the latest demands.

The group has another meeting for December 15 to hear from Bon Secours.

Henrico Schools are seeing an increase in dropout rates

Henrico Schools dropout rates are above the national average.

According to data shown at a school board meeting last month, the dropout rate rose to 7.5 percent in 2022. That’s an increase from 5.3 in 2018.

The director of high school education says English learners are being hit the hardest — many of whom are Hispanic.

“We have found that there are some language and engagement barriers among our multilingual learners. Additionally, many of these students face the challenge of being economically disadvantaged,” said Thomas Ferrell Jr.

Ferrell says they are working to implement strategies to reduce the numbers — including a program recently set up at Tucker High School.

It is designed to help lagging students acclimatize by assigning them a school counselor for social and emotional support – as well as instruction.

What’s the weather like?

Temperatures will drop to near normal November temperatures for the remainder of the week.

Today will be sunny and milder with highs in the mid to high 50’s.

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