State News Roundup
Under N.C. Ruling, Crime Does Pay--for Schools
Fines paid for criminal infractions of state laws should go to public schools, the North Carolina Supreme Court has ruled.
The court cited the state's constitutional provision that "proceeds of all penalties and forfeitures" go to maintain public schools in the district where the law was broken. Under the decision, the $922,000 paid to the state by a Craven County paper mill for violating state environmental standards will go to that county's 14,000-student district.
Lawyers for the state had argued that the payment was not a fine or a penalty, but a settlement.
About 150 Oregon teachers averted a strike last week by reaching an agreement on a contract with the state education department.
The teachers, who are employed by the state rather than by a school district, work at special schools for juvenile lawbreakers and deaf and blind children. They voted earlier this month to authorize a strike after contract talks broke down.
Negotiations with the education department resumed just after the teachers voted to strike, said Shari Thomas Forbes, a spokeswoman for the teachers.
The new contract, ratified unanimously by teachers last week, addresses disputed layoff and transfer policies and the security concerns of teachers at the correctional schools.
Report Cards on the Internet
The Arizona education department has published on the Internet "report cards" for 311 of the state's 1,200 public schools.
The report cards on the global computer network include statistics such as student scores on standardized achievement tests, enrollment, attendance, and promotion rates, as well as special programs and school resources. The remaining schools will be added as their information is processed.
The department will also mail the report cards to schools, where parents can receive a copy. The Internet address is http://ade.state.az.us/reportcards/.