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Federal File: Lone wolf; New assignments

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Earlier this month, Lamar Alexander and William J. Bennett, both of whom served as Secretary of Education under Republican Presidents, held a news conference calling for less federal involvement in education.

In a recent publication, however, the Secretary who served between the Bennett and Alexander eras calls for more federal involvement in teacher training.

"The federal government needs to target teacher education directly in stand-alone legislation," former Secretary Lauro F. Cavazos wrote in On Common Ground, a quarterly publication of the Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute.

"The federal government should make it clear that teacher preparation is a priority and that teachers are a national resource," he wrote. "Then funding needs to be provided for innovative teacher education, for programs that target minority-teacher recruitment, and for increased collaboration between universities and schools in the preparation of teachers."

Mr. Cavazos was appointed in 1988 by President Reagan after Mr. Bennett resigned. He stayed on under President Bush until he was dismissed in 1990, when the job was handed to Mr. Alexander.

Mr. Cavazos, who is now an adjunct professor in the department of community health at the Tufts University School of Medicine, also called on the federal government to "initiate programs that support colleges of education."

Billy Webster, the former chief of staff to Secretary of Education Richard W. Riley, has left the Education Department for the White House, where he will serve as deputy assistant to the President and director of scheduling and advance.

Mr. Webster is the former owner of a chain of fast-food restaurants in South Carolina.

Debra DeLee, the former director of government relations for the National Education Association, has been chosen to run the 1996 Democratic National Convention in Chicago.

Ms. DeLee left the N.E.A. in 1993 for the Democratic National Committee, where she served as the executive director. In that capacity, she managed the day-to-day operations of the D.N.C. and helped direct its approach to the upcoming midterm elections.

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