News In Brief

May 01, 2001 1 min read

Mama Bear

The Des Moines, Iowa, school district has taken a parent to court, claiming that for the past two years, she has harassed and intimidated school officials regarding her children’s education. Among other complaints, officials allege that Robin Moon telephoned the high school 46 times in less than an hour one day. Moon, who is African American, contends that the aggrieved officials are racists. “They are adamant about black parents and black children staying in their place and not questioning anyone,” she told the Des Moines Register in March.

Mob Mentality

The New York City Board of Education has canceled a one-year, $8.9 million contract with Liberty Food Group to supply public schools with frozen foods following a tip that the company may have ties to the Gambino crime family. The Brooklyn-based supplier told the New York Times it has no such connections.

Book Ban

After reviewing the Newbery Honor-winning novel The Watsons Go To Birmingham- 1963, the Nebo School District in Utah has decided to ban the book from its middle school classes. Two parents complained that there was excessive violence and swearing in the book after teacher Wanda Jones assigned it to her 7th grade English class this past fall. Jones, who spent $160 of her own money to buy 40 copies for her students, has donated the books to another school.

Paid To Study

In a program designed to improve academic performance among students at Buffalo, New York’s Burgard Vocational High School, incoming freshmen will be paid $5 an hour to attend summer school this year, the Buffalo News reports. The program is the first of its kind in western New York. Nearly 80 percent of Burgard’s students live below the poverty line, and many are forced to choose jobs over summer school to make ends meet.