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The Jackson, Miss., high school principal who was dismissed for allowing prayers to be read over the school intercom has been ordered reinstated at the end of the school year.

The Jackson school board on Dec. 15 overruled Superintendent Benjamin Canada's dismissal of Bishop Knox, the principal of Wingfield High School. The five-member board agreed that Mr. Knox had shown a lack of professional judgment in allowing the student-led prayers, but concluded that he had not been insubordinate. (See Education Week, Dec. 15, 1993.)

The board voted to suspend Mr. Knox without pay for the rest of the school year. School officials said the principal had ignored legal advice in allowing students to read prayers over the intercom on three mornings in November.

Border Students Expelled: California's Mountain Empire School District has excluded about 50 secondary school students since October, when a state assemblyman alleged that as many as 350 students from Mexico were attending schools at the district's expense. (See Education Week, Nov. 10, 1993.)

Figures were not available for the number of elementary school students expelled.

Most of the excluded students are able to cross the border at Tecate, Calif., because they are U.S. citizens who live in Mexico. But because they are not California residents, they are not legally eligible to matriculate in the district.

Resuscitation Vote Reversed: The Lewiston, Me., school board last month voted not to honor a mother's "do not resuscitate'' order for her severely disabled 12-year-old daughter, reversing an earlier decision to make an exception for the girl. The vote was the board's second reversal in the case.

Under the new rule, trained staff members may give life-saving aid, such as suctioning to clear the girl's airway or a gentle massage, but will not be allowed to use chest compression or mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.

The policy requires teams of people--which could include teachers, parents, class aides, doctors, students, and school administrators--to devise in-class plans to keep children alive at least long enough to be transported to outside emergency services.

The school board's vote came after word that the U.S. Education Department's office for civil rights intended to sue for the denial of the D.N.R. order, saying that it violated the girl's right to access to education.

Such orders, which are relatively common in hospitals, have become an increasing source of controversy in schools. (See Education Week, Nov. 10, 1993.)

Merger Plan Overruled: A federal appeals court has tossed out a plan to abolish the separate governing board of Louisiana's historically black public universities.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit last month ruled that U.S. District Court Judge Charles Schwartz overstepped his authority in ordering the state to implement a desegregation plan that included merging the governing boards of its historically black schools and three other university systems.

The appeals court said the lower-court judge acted incorrectly in ordering features of the current system to be changed without determining that they fostered segregation. (See Education Week, Feb. 3, 1993.)

Vol. 13, Issue 16

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