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The Dallas Independent School District has been freed from oversight by a monitor appointed by the Texas Education Agency.

Commissioner of Education Lionel (Skip) Meno told the district last month that sufficient progress had been made in its operations that it need no longer be supervised by the state monitor.

In August 1991, the agency appointed Luvern Cunningham, a professor emeritus of educational administration at Ohio State University, to oversee the district's operations. Mr. Cunningham had performed similar duties in Chicago, St. Louis, and Philadelphia. (See Education Week, Sept. 4, 1991.)

The agency appointed Mr. Cunningham in lieu of suspending the district's accreditation because of concerns over a wide range of issues including governance, testing, and deficiencies in curriculum and instructional programs.

In releasing the district from supervision, Mr. Meno told its trustees that "declines in students performance overall appear to be arrested and actual improvement is in evidence in some areas.''

The New Hampshire state board of education has voted to modify a controversial plan to eliminate certain statewide minimum standards for public schools, after a legislative panel criticized the plan.

One of the key points of contention had been the board's intention to scrap pupil-staff ratios that guide the hiring of assistant principals, guidance counselors, and library employees, among others. (See Education Week, Nov. 25, 1992.)

In the revised version, the ratios were retained, but with some modifications. High schools, for example, would be required to hire one guidance counselor for every 300 pupils served instead of one for every 300 students enrolled.

Several days earlier, a legislative committee that oversees rulemaking by state boards and agencies recommended that the board substantially revise its plan because it was "inconsistent with the interests of the state and the public,'' according to Richard E. Nusbaum, a lawyer for the committee.

The rules committee is scheduled to review the board's new version at its next meeting on Dec. 18.

Vol. 12, Issue 13

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