News Briefs

October 01, 2002 1 min read

Dog Days

The American Civil Liberties Union is attempting to ban police dog drug searches at Wagner Community School in South Dakota following an incident in which a dog allegedly chased kindergartners around a classroom. In a lawsuit filed against local school and law- enforcement officials, the ACLU claims students were traumatized by the event. Ken Cotton, the lawyer for the Wagner school board, denies that any canine ran after kids.

Speaking Out

¿Qué pasa? That was the reaction of many Phoenix teachers in August when the Isaac Elementary School District asked them to speak only English with students and discourage kids from using Spanish on the playground or in the cafeteria. “The goal is to model good English for the kids,” superintendent Paul Hanley told the Arizona Republic. But after educators complained, arguing that the policy would disrupt school culture in the 95 percent Latino district, officials withdrew the plan.

Generation Tech

Why bother calling a technician to fix a crashed computer, when kids can do it? Apparently this is what lots of educators think. A recent National School Board study finds that more than half of the country’s districts rely on students to maintain their computer networks. At many schools, the kids perform major tasks, such as setting up equipment, troubleshooting problems, and conducting technical maintenance, NSB reports.

Cashing In

Given the current financial climate, officials at California schools that had won bonuses for recently raising test scores didn’t expect to see the cash. More than $140 million had been promised to 3,400 schools, but the money was held up last winter by the state legislature when it faced a budget crunch. Ultimately, Governor Gray Davis lobbied to release $67 million of the funds, which schools received in August, the San Jose Mercury News reports.