August 5, 1992

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Vol. 11, Issue 40
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The U.S. Supreme Court's decision barring official prayer at public-school graduation ceremonies disappointed many educators in districts where the tradition has been strong, and some school officials say they will try to work around the ban.
Pamela Dubos, the chairman of the English department at nearby Bethel Park High School, spent a day here this summer observing this district's new portfolio-assessment program.
California school officials, who have been caught for a month in the middle of the nation's most severe state fiscal crisis, could learn this week exactly how deep they must cut spending in the coming year.
One of the most closely watched grant competitions in American education came to a close last month when the New American Schools Development Corporation selected 11 design teams out of 686 competitors to pursue their visions of radically different and more productive schools.
Although Bill Clinton won the Democratic Presidential nomination with the enthusiastic backing of the two major teachers' unions, and has been accused by President Bush of being too close to the education establishment, his campaign platform includes a diverse mix of ideas that inspire both broad support and substantial misgivings within the education community.
A New York task force studying improvements in school-to-work efforts has recommended revamping the state's current high-school graduation requirements in favor of a program that would equip all students with some work experience and job skills.
Childhood mortality decreased significantly between 1977 and 1989, but the death rate for teenagers and young adults climbed, primarily as a result of an upturn in homicides among young black men, according to a report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Ask children, "What is yellow and white and cool in the summer?" and most will tell you, "A creamsicle."
Claremont High School for developmentally disabled students location
Sandra Lawrence, the principal of Robert Lucas Elementary School in Iowa City, Iowa, has been chosen president-elect of the National Association of Elementary School Principals.
A legal-aid organization has filed a class action against the Chicago Board of Education and the Illinois Department of Education, charging that thousands of Chicago-area homeless children are being denied their right to a free public education
illinois voters are set to decide in November whether the state guarantees students an adequate education. But, after lawmakers adjourned their legislative session this summer, the voters will have to make that decision without much guidance about what would be required to provide such schooling.
1be proportion of black children living with one parent bas climbed to nearly 58 percent, up from 32 percent in 1970, according to data released by the U.S. Census Bureau.
The Milwaukee school board has approved a plan to decentralize school administration, lower the city's property-tax rate, and freeze staff pay.
Navistar International Transportation Corporation, a major manufacturer of school-bus chassis, has announced it will recall between 24,000 and 185,000 school buses for fuel-system defects that could cause a fire in a collision.
The Duluth, Minn., school system has ended its business relationship with a for-profit school-management firm that sought to take over permanent management of the district.
Newly released data from the 1990 Census provide additional evidence that the high-school-graduation rate is rising, particularly among minorities.
At an executive-management course here, students learn to make savvy business decisions by mastering concepts like discounted cash flow, present net value, and diversification. They tackle problems of marketing and management using case studies, spread sheets, and performance-evaluation review charts, and hear lectures peppered with anecdotes from Nordstrom's, Nissan, Federal Express, and General Motors.
Thirty people from a range of fields this summer began a yearlong training program as the first participants in a new effort designed to develop a cadre of urban school superintendents.
David Olmstead, a member of the Detroit Board of Education, recently resigned from a six-figure position as a partner at Michigan's oldest law firm in order to devote more time to the school board and to the cause of reforming school finance in his state.
Eager to join the national effort to improve science teaching, the Goleta Union Elementary School District here is gearing up to revitalize its science program to reflect cutting-edge instructional strategies in an era of diminished resources.
Sylvia Yee remembers being perplexed, but intrigued, when she received a phone call from Ramon C. Cortines, the superintendent of the San Francisco Unified School District, one day nearly three years ago. Mr. Cortines invited her to join him on a visit to a local elementary school.
The La Crosse, Wis., schools will go ahead this fall with a plan to bus elementary pupils based on family income, despite a new school-board majority that opposes the idea.
The New Jersey Board of Education has the power to combine school districts if necessary to eliminate de facto racial segregation, a state appeals court has ruled.
WASHINGTON--Delegates to the National Education Association's 130th Representative Assembly have given mixed reception to a plan to restructure the organization. Although the plan to "streamline" the N.E.A. had the backing of the union's board of directors, delegates m ting here last month deleted or modified several important recommendations.
WASHINGTON--As one would expect during an election year, the National Education Association's Representative Assembly meeting here was peppered with fiery political rhetoric, much of it aimed at the Bush Administration.
Teach For America, the nonprofit national teacher corps that began in 1989 as the brainchild of a Princeton University undergraduate, is facing the prospect of ending its fiscal year in September with a budget deficit of more than $3 million.
The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards has formed a network of school districts and universities in 19 states that will field test both its assessments and the operation of its certification system.
A regional teaching credential initiated by seven Northeastern states in 1989 has removed some of the professional barriers educators face when they relocate to neighboring states, a new study of the project contends.
More than 100 college executives and high-school guidance counselors met here recently to discuss ways to ease the transition from secondary to higher education.
The nation's colleges and universities continue to suffer financially.
U.S. students, often ranked at the bottom on international assessments of geographical knowledge, scored only slightly below average on a small-scale geography test of 13-year-olds in nine nations.
Asserting that many states and districts are failing to provide limited-English-proficient students with needed services, the Council of Chief State School Officers has issued guidelines for assessing and monitoring language-minority children.
WASHINGTON--The National Research Council has questioned the validity of the two largest studies of I bilingual education issued by the Education Department in recent years.
The Greek-born mayor of Westfield, Mass., was among local residents who recently tried to ban teachers with accents from the district's elementary classrooms.
Boston school officials have agreed for the first time to allow outside consultants help devise a plan for overhauling the district's troubled special-education program.
WASHINGTON--Enrollment in special- education programs grew at its fastest rate in a decade during the 1990-91 school year, according to the Education Department's annual report on the field.
A 25-year veteran of the U.S. Education Department who administers the federal Star Schools program and was a major force in securing federal backing for "Sesame Street'' and other educational programming has been named to oversee the educational-technology efforts of the Council of Chief State School Officers.
The Public Broadcasting Service is moving forward with plans to develop a mathematics service--an educational-video channel that would be aimed primarily at teachers but could also serve students and parents.
The Public Broadcasting Service will add several new children's shows to its schedule next fall, including a literacy series for 7- to 10-year-olds from the producers of "Sesame Street" and an arts series hosted by the comedy and magic performers Penn and Teller.
Rhode Island has effectively ended its three-year-old ban on Whittle Communication's Channel One, but the controversial high-school news show faces possible banishment from public schools in New Jersey.
The Federal Communications Commission has voted to allow telephone companies to carry video programming over their lines, a development that could have a significant impact on the field of distance-learning.
The Texas State Board of Education voted last month to assess $860,000 in new fines against publishers for 147 uncorrected mistakes in textbooks purchased by the state.
Braille textbooks will be more readily available to blind and visually impaired students under an agreement reached this summer between the American Printing House for the Blind and D.C. Heath & Company.
A publisher of hand-held, electronic reference materials has signed an agreement with the textbook division of a New York publishing house to distribute classroom sets of its dictionaries, thesauri,and spellers free of charge with the publisher's books.
Two-thirds of the adult-youth partnerships established through a national mentoring program proved to be effective relationships that were satisfying to both parties, an independent study has found.
Educational institutions received about $12 billion in donations during the 1990-91 school year, the Council for Aid to Education reported this month.
The Sega Corporation, a Japanese-owned video-game manufacturer, has established a foundation aimed at young people.
A dozen major corporations have pledged to raise up to $30 million to expand both the availability and quality of child-care and elder-care services in areas where they have large concentrations of employees.
The number of children living in poverty in the United States reached 11.2 million in 1989, an increase of 11 percent since 1979 and 19 percent since 1969, according to a study issued last month by the Children's Defense Fund.
The American Association for Higher Education is bringing postsecondary- and precollegiate-education leaders together to identify and resolve problems affecting both sectors.
Mathematics and science reforms at the state level over the past five years have focused on curricula and alternative assessments, a national survey by the Council of Chief State School Officers has found.
The Pew Charitable Trusts this fall will select five states to participate in the initial stage of an 11-year, $56-million effort to overhaul their social, educational, and health services for children into a unified system.
In a ruling that could break new legal ground, a Florida judge ruled last month that an 11-year-old boy has the right to seek to end his relationship with his parents.
Responding to allegations of widespread cheating on tests and coursework, a top Pittsburgh high school has produced "academic integrity" guidelines aimed at stemming future incidents.
A task force of the National Governors' Association was expected to issue a report this week recommending interim "benchmarks'' that states can use to measure their progress toward ensuring that all children start school ready to learn.
State governments, which are already struggling to meet growing demands for services, have little to look forward to but strained budgets and political conflict during the fiscal year that just got under way, a preliminary report by the National Conference of State Legislatures suggests.
Texas lawmakers are gearing up for a new assault on their seemingly insurmountable school-finance problems, and a flurry of warnings this summer from key players on the issue suggests it will be hard going indeed.
New Jersey lawmakers have sidetracked three controversial constitutional amendments that had the potential to dramatically affect the funding and structure of public schools in the state.
Brushing aside Gov. William F. Weld' argument that new education money should await passage of a reform bill, Massachusetts lawmakers last week easily overrode vetoes of a total of 185 million in additional state aid to schools.
States should set in motion strategic plans to ensure that all children enter school ready to learn, while also giving communities more flexibility and authority to match resources to family needs, a report from the Southern Regional Education Board recommends.
In a significant reverse for the choice movement nationwide, a school-voucher initiative in California has failed to win a spot on the November ballot.
In an apparent effort to pre-empt political pressures for changes and cutbacks, the New York State education department has initiated a reorganization plan aimed at transforming the way in which it serves school districts.
After months of debate and compromise and amid some lingering doubts, Maryland last week became the first state to require community service by students as a condition of high-school graduation.
The following are summaries of final actions by legislatures on education-related matters.
Pennsylvania public-school teachers will have some restrictions placed on their right to strike, under a measure signed into law by Gov. Robert P. Casey.
illinois voters are set to decide in November whether the state guarantees students an adequate education. But, after lawmakers adjourned their legislative session this summer, the voters will have to make that decision without much guidance about what would be required to provide such schooling.
Despite an intensive campaign by state officials to garner public support for expanding the state's tax base, the Florida legislature has passed a bud· get for fiscal 1993 without substantially altering the tax system.
Funding for precollegiate education in Pennsylvania will be frozen during fiscal 1993, under a budget signed into law hours before the new fiscal year began July 1.
WASHINGTON--President Bush has served notice that he will try to make school choice an issue in the Presidential campaign.
The Bush Administration apparently has a lot to learn about the Puerto Rican community. Shortly after President Bush appointed a 17-member Advisory Commission on Hispanic Education, Puerto Rican activists complained about lack of representation, as only one member claimed Puerto Rican heritage.
Thirty people from a range of fields this summer began a yearlong training program as the first participants in a new effort designed to develop a cadre of urban school superintendents.
Federal officials have awarded more than $855,000 in grants for efforts to set national standards for student achievement in geography and civics.
WASHINGTON--Without waiting for final Congressional approval, the National Education Goals Panel is moving ahead with creation of a council to oversee the development of national standards and a system of assessments tied to the standards.
WASHINGTON--Bush Administration officials have asked Senate Republicans to attempt to block final Congressional approval of an education-reform bill drafted by Democrats as an alternative to the Administration's America 2000 plan, according to aides from both parties.
While Bill Clinton, the Democratic Presidential nominee, is known nationally for his work on education issues, he chose a running mate with virtually no education record.
WASHINGTON--President Bush has signed legislation that authorizes more spending for college student aid, makes more students eligible for grants and loans, and creates financial-aid, teacher-training, and early-intervention programs.
WASHINGTON--The House last week approved a fiscal 1993 socialservice spending bill under which education programs would approximately keep pace with inflation.
Following are key statements on education and related issues contained in the Democratic Party's 1992 platform:
WASHINGTON--The House has approved a tax bill that would create urban and rural "enterprise zones" eligible for extra education, job-training, and child-nutrition aid, and the Senate is poised to follow suit.
Capital Update tracks the movement of legislation, the introduction of notable bills, and routine regulatory announcements.
Refonns in Chapter 1 regulations mandated by the Congress in 1988 have not done enough to improve the compensatory-education program's services for children, an interim report from a national assessment of the program concludes.
WASHINGTON--The U.S. Supreme Court's ruling that Mississippi bas not proved it bas rid its higher-education system of the effects of state-mandated racial segregation could have long-lasting ramifications, legal analysts believe.
JUSTICE KENNEDY delivered the opinion of the Court:
That government must remain neutral in matters of religion does not foreclose it from ever taking religion into account. The state may "accommodate'' the free exercise of religion by relieving people from generally applicable rules that interfere with their religious callings. Contrary to the views of some, such accommodation does not necessarily signify an official endorsement of religious observance over disbelief.
NEW YORK--One afternoon during the Democratic convention here last month, the convention floor was nearly empty. But the broadcast facilities that had been carved from the upper reaches of Madison Square Garden buzzed with activity.
For the nearly 500 teachers'-union members attending the Democratic convention as delegates here last month, the nomination for President of a Governor known nationally for his work in education and the adoption of a platform echoing the candidate's detailed education agenda were causes for jubilation.
Following are key statements on education and related issues contained in the Democratic Party's 1992 platform:
Many design teams that failed to win funding from the New American Schools Development Corporation last month have pledged to continue their work.
From its outset, the New American Schools Development Corporation asserted that its purpose was to create "highly effective schools, not the development of new knowledge."
In July, the New American Schools Development Corporation selected 11 design teams that will spend the next year developing and refining their "blueprints" for a new generation of American schools.
To figure out Chris Whittle, the educational entrepreneur, look beyond the headlines, at the numbers. Mr. Whittle made headlines in late May when he hired Benno Schmidt, the president of Yale University, to lead what Mr. Whittle calls, rather grandly, "The Edison Project.'' It will, he says, create 1,000 new, profit-making private schools for 2 million students by the year 2010. These will be schools for all children, "ages 0 to 18,'' Mr. Whittle said when he announced the project. The tuition, he says, will not exceed the national per-pupil expenditure (about $5,000), and he promises to give scholarships to many children whose parents can't afford the tuition.
I was pleased to see your recent article, "School-Finance Suits Look Beyond Money to Issues of Quality,"
1-6 Student councils: National Leadership Camp, sponsored by the National Association of Secondary School Principals Division of Student Activities, to be held at Outlaw Ranch in Mount Rushmore, S.D. Contact: Jolene Roitman, NASSP, Division of Student Activities, 1904 Association Dr., Reston, Va. 22091; (703) 860-0200, ext. 258.
Appointments in schools, districts, states, associations & other areas
The apparent failure in the United States of both liberal-left and neoconservative policies and programs has given rise to what has been variously called the "radical middle,'' the "extreme center,'' the "snarling mainstream.''
FOUNDATION SUPPORT: Coverage of specific topics in Education Week is supported in part by grants from the Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the CME Group Foundation, the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, the Joyce Foundation, the NoVo Foundation, the Noyce Foundation, the Raikes Foundation, the Wallace Foundation, and the Walton Family Foundation. The newspaper retains sole editorial control over the content of the articles that are underwritten by the foundations. Additional grants in support of Editorial Projects in Education’s data journalism and video capacity come from the Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust and the Schott Foundation for Public Education. (Updated 1/1/2017)

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