September 23, 1998

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Vol. 18, Issue 03
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In Bob Jacobs' government class at Fauquier High School, the introductory lesson on political jargon and other pertinent technical terms that he opens with each fall has held uncommon intrigue for this year's seniors. The ordinary lexicon of the class--which includes terms like impeachment, high crimes and misdemeanors, and censure--has perked up the ears of many students and roused them from their slouched positions.
Reading was on the agenda for both national teachers' unions this summer, but their approaches couldn't have been more different.
Republicans and Democrats alike are giving top billing to class-size reduction and school safety and making vouchers and tax credits for private education defining issues in this year's crowded state election season.
Venture capitalists, the spark plugs in the growth of emerging high-tech industries and in the booming national economy, are setting their sights on the business of education.
When Barbara and Roger Rossier decided to make what is possibly the largest single donations ever to a school of education, they hoped it would be part of a new philanthropic trend.
A suburban Cincinnati district's decision to close school for two Jewish holidays this month has angered a group of parents who say the accommodation gives preference to one religion over another.

Court Bars Drug Testing
Of Students Who Fight

The $18 million that the Schools and Libraries Corp. is spending on outside contractors, noted in the profile of former CEO Ira A. Fishman in the Sept. 9 issue, is the corporation's estimate for the full 1998 calendar year.

Charlie G. Williams, a former state superintendent of education for South Carolina, died Sept. 7. He was 70.
Charlie G. Williams
The Horace Mann Life Insurance Co. has gone national with a product whose time, it maintains, has come: assault insurance for educators.
The New York City school board unanimously approved a controversial arrangement last week to put the city's police force in charge of hiring, firing, and training school security officers. The vote ended three years of often heated negotiations between Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani, who proposed the plan, and school leaders.

Weary of what they describe as unfounded attacks and increasing criticism leveled at the nation's public schools, the leaders of several national groups convened a conference of administrators, teachers, and other education experts here this month to launch a counterattack.

Testing experts are building a case against giving teachers and principals wide discretion over what accommodations to offer test-takers with disabilities or limited proficiency in English.

Independent Counsel Kenneth W. Starr's report is making life difficult not only for President Clinton, but also for thousands of educators who have to decide whether their students should have access to it on the Internet.
As school systems face the challenge of record-high enrollments along with concerns about current or predicted teacher shortages, education policy leaders are urging states not to lose sight of the need to improve instruction.
The Superior Court in Middletown, Conn., this month has provided the latest forum for a familiar argument over whether the state has done enough to ease educational inequities.
Changes to West Virginia's welfare program have spurred a new initiative to help poor parents provide clothing for their children.

Beasley Proposes
S.C. Teacher-Bonus Plan

South Carolina teachers who volunteer to take a standardized competency test and do well on it would receive an annual $6,000 bonus, under a nine-point proposal released by Gov. David Beasley this month.

Most Head Start classroom teachers would be required to earn an associate's or a bachelor's degree by 2003 under a bill that extends the program for five years.

With a crackdown on one state, the Department of Education appears to be keeping its promise to toughen oversight of the state role in enforcing federal special education law.

Secretary of Education Richard W. Riley reiterated his strong support for President Clinton last week and dismissed speculation that the administration's school agenda will be hurt by the scandal involving the chief executive.

Indian School Getting Funds
For Fire Upgrades

The federal Bureau of Indian Affairs will spend $800,000 to upgrade fire protection at the Santa Fe Indian School. The help comes at the urging of New Mexico's congressional delegation and after state fire inspectors found serious safety deficiencies at the school, which is owned by the state's 19 Pueblo communities and serves Native American students in grades 7 through 12.

A civil rights watchdog group says a politically timid Clinton administration is failing to enforce a federal law designed to ensure that impoverished students receive the same challenging curriculum as their wealthier peers.

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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