Bill Honig, the former California state schools chief, went to a state appeals court last week in an attempt clear his name and overturn his 1993 felony convictions.
Mr. Honig was forced to relinquish his elected post when he was convicted of four charges of violating the state conflict of interest law.
The convictions stemmed from $300,000 in state contracts that he awarded to four schools that were working with the Quality Education Program, a nonprofit parental-involvement venture operated by his wife.
Mr. Honig was sentenced to four years of probation, 1,000 hours of community service, and was ordered to pay a total of $274,754 in restitution to the state.
The May 28 appeal was meant to do two things, said Mr. Honig's lawyer, Quin Denvir. The first goal was to reverse the four felony convictions; the second was to reduce or eliminate the amount of restitution Mr. Honig has been ordered to pay. He has already completed the community-service portion of his sentence.
A three-judge panel of the Third Appellate District Court heard oral arguments from Mr. Denvir and Robert Anderson, a senior assistant state attorney general.
The judges will have 90 days to rule on the appeal.
Mr. Honig, 59, who was schools chief for 11 years, now works with a statewide school-reform program at San Francisco State University. (See Education Week, Oct. 13, 1993.)
He has also done volunteer work in California public school classrooms and has contributed to national projects that have sought to improve academic standards for teaching math and science.
The American Council on Education, a higher education research and lobbying organization based in Washington, has named Stanley O. Ikenberry as its new president.
He will succeed Robert H. Atwell, who has headed the organization since 1984.
Mr. Ikenberry is the chairman of the board of directors of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching in Princeton, N.J. He is expected to take up his new position this fall.
Mr. Atwell has said he has no plans to retire but would like to be free to pursue other opportunities.
--Adrienne D. Coles