District News Roundup

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Westmar University has offered to waive tuition for about 400 graduating high school seniors in Plymouth County, Iowa, if they attend the private, four-year college.

Glenn Balch Jr., the president of the college in Le Mars, the county seat, told reporters last month that the offer was made as a show of gratitude for a recent $1.6 million loan to the college from the local community.

The school, which has been facing declining enrollment, expects to have an enrollment of about 500 students this spring. Officials hope at least 35 of the 392 Plymouth County students who are academically eligible will take advantage of the offer.

Each scholarship would be worth about $10,000 a year.

On Again, Off Again

The embattled San Jose superintendent is hanging onto her job--for now.

The school board last week unanimously voiced its support for Superintendent Linda Murray. They agreed to draw up a plan of action that includes improving communication among members and the superintendent.

Board members had surprised Ms. Murray last month by telling her they wanted her out. But they did not provide Ms. Murray with the required written notice of cause for dismissal. Ms. Murray has said she will not resign.

Ill feeling toward her swelled again last month, a district spokeswoman said, when she fired her associate superintendent, Barry Schimmel.

Joy Ride Ends

A 13-year old boy led North Carolina state and local police on a 90-mile chase in a stolen school bus late last month.

The youth took the bus from the parking lot of South Columbus High School in Tabor City.

Authorities said last week that the boy's joy ride lasted 2 1/2 hours, ending when he pulled into the parking lot of a high school near Bolivia, N.C., and stepped off the bus.

No one was injured, and no charges have been filed, said Robert Wooster, the Tabor City police chief.

T-Shirt Settlement

A South Carolina school district has settled a lawsuit with seven students who were suspended last year for wearing T-shirts depicting a Confederate flag.

The students at Blackville Middle School charged in a federal suit that school officials violated their First Amendment free-expression rights by barring clothing with the Confederate flag.

The Barnwell school district settled the suit last month for $5,000, but it did not admit it violated the students' rights, a lawyer for the district said.

Vol. 15, Issue 20

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