States News Roundup
Urge Ban on Jobs
During School Hours
Delegates to the 52nd annual Wyoming Education Assembly have unanimously approved a resolution asking the state to prohibit public-school students from holding jobs that require them to work during the school day, except in the context of the school curriculum.
"A student's performance in school must take precedence over a job outside school," the 163 teachers who constitute the assembly agreed.
The delegate's reform package, entitled "Time To Teach--Time To Learn," included nine other recommendations. Among them were: the convening of a statewide conference on absenteeism and truancy; the enactment of a Wyoming collective-bargaining law; further equalization of school funding by the legislature; and the use of flexible teacher scheduling, according to Deborah K. Lee, communications officer for the Wyoming Education Association.
The teachers also asked that the state fund "educational excellence grants" that would allow up to 5 percent of teachers annually to take sabbaticals, study leaves, or have time off to work on curriculum development, Ms. Lee said.
They also approved the idea of legislation that would allow teachers to receive a summer contract once every five years to go back to school for further education, to pursue research, or to work on curriculum development.
Liberty Baptist College, founded by the television evangelist Jerry Falwell, is being scrutinized this month by Virginia Board of Education officials, who must decide by June 30 whether or not to renew the conditional accreditation they granted the school's biology-education program two years ago.
The school's biology program has been controversial because it had required prospective biology teachers to take a course on creationism theory, according to Harry L. Smith, a spokesman for the board.
In order to qualify for state accreditation, a biology program must provide a "scientific" approach to biology. Graduates of any unaccredited program are not permitted to teach in Virginia public schools.
In granting the conditional accreditation in 1982, board members asked the college to make the "History of Life" class an elective and to remove some religious language from the school's written objectives, Mr. Smith said, adding that school officials have told the board that they have complied with the requests.
But recently the creationism issue came up again when board officials learned that the college has been endorsed by the Transnational Association of Christian Schools, which Mr. Smith characterized as "an accrediting association for schools and colleges that are committed to the doctrine of creationism."
According to A. Pierre Guillermin, president of Liberty Baptist College, although the school has been "recognized" by the Transnational Association of Christian Schools, it is not a member or associated in any way.
"The Liberty Baptist College governing board has never authorized application or requested tracs recognition or membership," Mr. Guillermin wrote last month in response to questions raised by the state board.
An investigation team will visit the college this month, Mr. Smith said. The board is expected to make a final decision regarding accreditation of the program at either its April or its May meeting.
Ohio Panel Asked
To Outline Changes
The Ohio State Board of Education has directed the state's Teacher Education and Certification Advisory Commission to develop recommendations for revised teacher education and certification standards.
Meeting last week, the board also directed the commission to develop standards for postgraduate education programs in colleges and universities.
The teacher-education standards were last revised in 1970 and became effective in January 1972. The current standards on colleges and universities were adopted in 1974.
In its resolution, the board said, "the broadest possible base of lay and professional thinking [should] be brought to bear on the key issues surrounding teacher education and certification prior to formulating recommendations.
Vol. 03, Issue 29