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Ruth Wright Hayre, who 32 years ago became the first black high-school principal in Philadelphia, wants to ignite the same pioneering spirit in some of the youngest Philadelphians.

Ms. Hayre has offered to pay for the college education of 119 elementary students from two schools in low-income neighborhoods of the city. She announced the creation of her scholarship fund to a delighted audience of potential recipients and their parents attending 6th-grade graduation ceremonies at the Richard R. Wright and Kenderton elementary schools in north Philadelphia.

Temple University will manage the program, entitled "Tell Them We Are Rising.'' The title comes from the response of Ms. Hayre's grandfather, Richard R. Wright, to a question about the condition of former slaves in the post-Civil War era.

Ms. Hayre was named principal of William Penn High School in 1956.

Pittsburgh school officials have tapped Bennie J. Swans Jr., the Philadelphia expert on youth gangs, to help them stop gangs from taking root in their schools.

Mr. Swans, who founded an organization called Crisis Intervention Network Inc. to fight violence among Philadelphia gang members, presented a day of workshops last month to school and community leaders.

The purpose of the workshops, school officials said, is to teach local leaders how to keep gangs from flourishing in Pittsburgh as they have in recent years in other major cities.

Gene Arline, the Florida teacher with tuberculosis whose fight to regain her job resulted in a landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling, has been ordered reinstated with full back pay by a federal district judge.

U.S. District Judge John Moore ruled in July that the Nassau County school board must restore Ms. Arline to her job as a 3rd-grade teacher and give her approximately $100,000 in back pay. The board fired her in 1979 after she suffered a relapse of the contagious disease, on the grounds that she posed a health risk to students.

In 1987, the Supreme Court ruled that Ms. Arline's disease was a disability, and that she was protected against discrimination on the basis of handicap by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

Lower federal courts have extended the Court's ruling to apply to victims of acquired immune deficiency syndrome.

Eugene M. Lang, the New York philanthropist, businessman, and founder of the "I Have a Dream'' program, has been awarded the James L. Fisher Distinguished Service to Education Award by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education.

Mr. Lang, president of the REFAC Technology Development Corporation, created the "I Have a Dream'' concept in 1986 with a promise he made to 6th-grade students at New York City's P.S. 121. During a graduation speech at the school he had attended as a boy, Mr. Lang offered to cover the college costs of every member of the class who finished high school.

Mr. Lang also has served as chairman of the board of Swarthmore College, his alma mater, and as a trustee of the New School of Social Research.

A California developer's plans to open a school run by the nationally known educator Marva Collins have fallen through. But the principles she developed at her Westside Preparatory School in Chicago will nevertheless be put into practice in Los Angeles this fall.

The developer, who had hoped to build a school for Ms. Collins in Compton, Calif., said in July that he had failed to get sufficient financial support in the community for the idea.

Instead, a separate group in Los Angeles is planning a new school that will seek to duplicate Westside, according to Wanda D. Clemmons, the group's leader. The school also will bear Ms. Collins's name.

Gov. Ray Mabus of Mississippi has been elected chairman of the 15-state Southern Regional Education Board.

Governor Mabus, at 39 the nation's youngest governor, has established a reputation as an education leader during his first months in office. Earlier this year, he won the legislature's approval for a substantial pay raise for teachers.

Gerald Hoeltzel has been appointed state superintendent of Oklahoma schools by Gov. Henry Bellmon. Mr. Hoeltzel, 54, has been superintendent of the Watonga Public Schools since 1982.

Mr. Hoeltzel will fill the two years remaining in the term of John M. Folks, who resigned July 1 to become superintendent of the Midwest City-Del City school district. Mr. Hoeltzel plans to seek election to a full four-year term in 1990.

Mr. Bellmon also appointed Sandra Garrett, an administrator in the state education department, to serve in his Cabinet as secretary of education. Ms. Garrett replaces Smith Holt, who is returning to Oklahoma State University as dean of the college of arts and sciences.

The Maryland State Board of Education has chosen Joseph L. Shilling, 50, to succeed David W. Hornbeck as state school superintendent.

Mr. Shilling, who has spent his entire career working in Maryland schools, was the unanimous choice of the board from among 12 candidates. In fact, none of the other candidates was even interviewed for the job--an omission that angered Gov. William D. Schaefer. The Governor said through a spokesman that the procedure was "humiliating'' for him because he had encouraged others to apply.

Mr. Shilling was deputy superintendent under Mr. Hornbeck for eight years before leaving in 1985 to head a consortium seeking to improve education on the state's rural Eastern Shore.

Mr. Hornbeck left the superintendency after 12 years to join a Washington law firm. He also will teach at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore.

Richard C. Hunter, former superintendent of schools in Dayton, Ohio, and Richmond, Va., will become superintendent of Baltimore Public Schools this month.

Since resigning the Dayton post in 1985, Mr. Hunter has been a professor of education at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. His three-year contract in Baltimore provides a $125,000 annual salary.

Robert J. Ferrera has been chosen as superintendent of the Minneapolis school system. The post had been vacated by Richard R. Green, who was named chancellor of the New York City public schools earlier this year.

Mr. Ferrera has been superintendent of the Grand Rapids, Mich., public schools for the past four years. Prior to that, he held a similar post in Lawndale, Calif. His new three-year contract, which began Aug. 1, carries an $89,500 annual salary.

Vol. 07, Issue 39 Extra Edition

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