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The Commission on National and Community Service is set to hold its first meeting Sept. 25, Bush Administration officials have announced.

Members of the Congress from both parties had criticized the White House because it missed by weeks a statutory deadline for nominations to the panel.

President Bush announced his nomination of all but 1 of the commission's 21 members on duly 22. By the time of its August recess, the Senate had confirmed all but 4 of the 20 nominees.

The remaining 4 are also expected to win confirmation before this month's meeting, said J. Russell George, associate director of policy in the White House office of national service.

The panelists include Daniel J. Evans, the former Governor and U.S. Senator from Washington State, and Richard F. "Digger" Phelps, the head basketball coach of the University of Notre Dame from 1971 to 1990.

The commission is responsible for designing and administering new programs authorized under the National and Community Service Act of 1990.

About 430,000 high-school students were enrolled in cooperative-education programs in the 1989-90 school year, according to a General Accounting Office report released last month.

The report notes, however, that the programs, which link the classroom and workplace, are often overlooked by education policymakers, despite delivering encouraging results.

In its report, which was mandated by the 1990 Carl D. Perkins Vocational Education Act, the G.A.o. says that cooperative-education programs are among the most promising apprenticeship-type programs, but noted that the programs are often stigmatized as a "dumping ground" for weak students.

Despite local successes noted by schools and employers, the Education Department no longer tracks such programs. The G.A.O. recommends that the department begin to examine the efforts as a solution to gaps in the nation's school-to-work transition.

"Both students and employers can benefit from participating in high-quality cooperative education," the report notes. "Students attain work orientation, job skills, and, often, permanent employment."

"They are also more likely to stay in school and pursue additional education," it adds.

Single copies of the report, "Transition from School to Work: Linking Education and Worksite Training," document number HRD-91-105, are free from the G.A.O., P.O. Box 6015, Gaithersburg, Md. 20877.

The Interior Department may have to put an 11 l-acre tract that once housed the Phoenix Indian School up for bids following the collapse of negotiations with a Florida-based developer, which was to have acquired the land in a swap for 100,000 acres of wetlands. Spokesmen for the Barron Collier Company, of Naples, Fla., said that its five-year effort to negotiate the swap was at end, in part because the Phoenix city government was unwilling to permit a higher density of development on the site.

As a condition of the swap, the developer had proposed to establish a $35-million educational trust fund for Native Americans.

Mayor Paul Johnson of Phoenix appealed to Senator Dennis DeConcini, Democrat of Arizona, in late July to obtain an additional $20 million from the federal government to sweeten the deal, but Mr. DeConcini told local newspapers that the request came too late in the federal budget process.

Vol. 11, Issue 02, Page 1

Published in Print: September 11, 1991, as Capital Digest
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