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Take Note: Parents see red; Get off of my stage

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Parents See Red

U.S. Secretary of Education Richard W. Riley has been preaching the gospel of family involvement, but his words apparently have fallen on deaf ears at one New York City school.

At Public School 69 in Jackson Heights, officials have angered some parents by painting a red line on the sidewalk outside the elementary school. Parents are not allowed to cross the line to pick up their children after school.

"It's not really a welcoming sight," said Felicita Morales, the mother of 6- and 7-year-old students at the school.

But Principal Tina Cacomanolis said the line was needed to maintain safety and order because the school has no yard. "The line is for parents to stand behind, to leave room for children to walk on the sidewalk instead of being mobbed," she said.

Phyllis Mayer, the parent of a 2nd grader and the treasurer of the school's P.T.A., also defended the practice. "Whenever the children came out, the parents would push forward," she said. When asked to wait, she said, some parents "would look at me as if I had two heads. They would not pay attention to anything we would say."

Ms. Morales said she understood the need for safety but suggested that officials go back to the drawing board and look for another solution.

Get Off of My Stage

Forget it if you thought the Rolling Stones were going to hook an entire generation of new fans with their nationwide tour this fall.

There are at least a few dissatisfied young music-lovers out West.

The aging rockers recently reshuffled their show at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City and forced the cancellation of a high school marching-band competition that regularly draws about 3,000 participants from many Western states.

"It's the biggest high school competition in Utah," said Steven R. Hendricks, the leader of the band at Davis High School in Kaysville, Utah.

Worse, the Stones do not even perform at the university until Oct. 23, two days after the scheduled date of the band competition. It reportedly takes two days to build the "Voodoo Lounge" set.

--Meg Sommerfeld & Drew Lindsay

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