National News Roundup
Edward A. Knapp, a former official of the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, was nominated to be the director of the National Science Foundation by President Reagan last week.
Mr. Knapp, who has been serving as the science foundation's director of mathematics and physical sciences, will replace John B. Slaughter. Mr. Slaughter recently left the foundation to become chancellor of the University of Maryland at College Park.
The nomination of Mr. Knapp, who headed the Los Alamos accelerator-technology division, must be confirmed by the Senate.
While political pollsters and columnists made their predictions of which way the national election tide would turn, students and their parents from all 50 states conducted their own "mock election"--and the trends they projected were mirrored by the results of the real election.
The occasion was the National Student/Parent Mock Election, held the week before the national elections. Its sponsor was the Teachers Guides to Television Family Institute, a New York-based nonprofit education organization.
"The students were quite accurate," said Renee Silverman, a spokesman for the institute. "They predicted that the House would stay Democratic, and that the Republicans would keep the Senate." They also projected a sizable increase in the number of Democratic governors, she said.
The election was not intended as a scientific prediction, but rather as a tool for getting students and their families involved in civic matters. Schools and districts that participated tallied students' votes, then telephoned their totals into a state or national election headquarters.
The institute has no figures on the exact number of participants, but Ms. Silverman said staff members know that it was "thousands and thousands."
"A lot of people really got involved," she said. "The kids were very serious about this."
The institute sponsored its first mock election in 1980 and hopes to expand the program in 1984.
The College Board has recalcula-ted the scores of 24,000 students who took its biology achievement test in June because two of the test's 100 multiple-choice questions were found to have no wrong answers.
It was the first time the board has ever rescored one of its 14 subject-area achievement tests. It has admitted errors on its Scholastic Aptitude Test three times, most recently in May.
The flaw in one question was discovered by Alan Feld, a high-school senior from Clark, N.J. A team of biology experts, asked by the Educational Testing Service to review Mr. Feld's challenge, found a second error.
The scores of 63 percent of the students who took the biology test will remain unchanged, according to officials of The College Board. About 25 percent will have 10 points added to their scores. One percent, including many students who did not answer the flawed questions, had 20 points added to their new scores, which were mailed late last month. The remaining 11 percent lost 10 points.
Like the sat, the board's achievement tests are scored on a 200-to-800-point scale.
The Education Department eliminated $2.5-million-worth of publications and audio-visual materials this year as part of a government-wide effort to reduce federal publications deemed "unnecessary" or duplicative of those published by the private sector, a department spokesman said last week.
In response to a directive from the federal budget office, a committee of Administration officials in the department reviewed more than 200 publications and 27 audio-visual projects produced by the department, said Anne Graham, assistant secretary for legislation and public affairs.
Spending on such projects was reduced 20 percent by consolidating several publications, reducing the number of illustrations and the use of color photographs, and by eliminating several publications outright, she said.
Among those eliminated are several directories that were provided free of charge to schools and colleges. They include: Directory of Education Associations, Directory of Local Education Agencies, Directory of State Education Agencies, and Education Directory: Colleges and Universities.
Other publications, such as Congressionally mandated annual reports on federal education programs, will be compiled, but they will not be made available in published form to the public, she said.
The Corporation for Public Broadcasting is funding a major new children's television series scheduled for broadcast beginning in the fall of 1984.
The series, which has not been given a name, will consist initially of 26 weeks of dramatic programs intended for children between the ages of 7 and 12.
"The series is designed for post-Sesame Street-era children," said a spokesman for cpb
Five public-television stations headed by WQED-tv in Pittsburgh have formed The Children's and Family Consortium to produce the series.
cpb has budgeted $6 million for the series and is hoping to raise an additional $3 million from public-television stations and private sources.