December 16, 1998

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Vol. 18, Issue 16
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In 20 states, sex between a student and an adult employee is perfectly legal, as long as the young person is at least 16. And if the student is 17, add three more states to the list.


This series is the result of a six-month project by Education Week Associate Editor Caroline Hendrie and Deputy Managing Editor Steven Drummond.

A small, well-trained army of research assistants fanned out into the nation's kindergarten classes this fall as part of a massive new federal effort to track children's learning and development from the start of school to the end of 5th grade.

When students at the Alice Carlson Applied Learning Center organize school events, run the annual PTA membership drive, and write city zoning officials in support of an outdoor-learning center, they aren't missing out on their curriculum.


Michael Baca

Math teacher

Santa Fe, N.M.

Theodore S. Sergi
Theodore S. Sergi has been reappointed Connecticut's commissioner of education by the state school board. Mr. Sergi, 49, has worked with the Connecticut education department for 20 years. In his position, which he has held since 1995, he works with officials from the state's 166 districts, which serve more than half a million students. Mr. Sergi's new four-year term begins next month.

With a plea and a promise, an idea-sharing network to support teachers in the use of technology was launched last week for the third time in less than three years.

Teachers in Cincinnati last week rejected a proposed contract change that would have allowed the district to redesign low-performing schools from the ground up.

Okla. Districts To Get Millions
From Company's Back Taxes

The United States is progressing slowly toward the ambitious national education goals set almost nine years ago, but is unlikely to meet them by the 2000 target date, according to the panel charged with monitoring the process.

Carolivia Herron hoped the book she wrote about her hair--"the kinkiest, the nappiest, the fuzziest, the most screwed up, squeezed up, knotted up, tangled up, twisted up, nappiest" hair you ever saw--would promote self-esteem and pride among black children.

On a crisp fall Saturday in this city's affluent Upper East Side, 13-year-old Chris Forde glimpsed a world of new educational opportunities.

Heroin use among high school students has jumped sharply in the past five years, as the narcotic has become easier to acquire and as more teenagers sniff it in the false belief that that method is safer than injection, a study released last week concludes.
Many states are threatening to get tough by adopting policies that reward success and punish failure in education. But, so far, there may be more bluster than action, according to Quality Counts '99: Rewarding Results, Punishing Failure.
School principals often feel they need to be education's answer to the Colonial minuteman—ready at a moment's notice to handle just about anything.
During a quarter-century career in the Los Angeles County schools, Jeffrey Warschaw has worked with inner-city gang members, taught children with severe emotional problems, and seen students charged with murder.
Few people go to college with the intention of falling in love with a professor.
The New York state affiliate of the American Civil Liberties Union has filed a federal lawsuit claiming that educational opportunities for the state's minority students are so inferior that they amount to discrimination.
Gov.-elect Gray Davis of California appears poised to reshape what many see as the state's piecemeal and inefficient system of developing policies to govern its 8,000 K-12 public schools.
Texas students, already among the most tested in the country, would take more exams in more subjects under a new proposal by state Commissioner of Education Mike Moses.

Mo. Makes Final K.C. Desegregation Payment

Missouri has made its final payment in the settlement of the 21-year-old Kansas City desegregation lawsuit--nearly seven months ahead of schedule.

The California board of education unanimously approved new state frameworks in mathematics and language arts last week in a move that will likely influence instruction and textbook selection in the state and around the nation for years to come.

Tom G. Tancredo of Colorado plans to hit the ground running in the upcoming 106th Congress. And the former federal education official has found the perfect launch pad: the House Committee on Education and the Workforce.

Here are some sources for additional information on sexual abuse of students by school employees:

A little-noticed provision in the new vocational education law that would put more high school students on community college campuses has some federal and state officials scratching their heads.


Ford Calls for Education Session

Rep. Harold E. Ford Jr. wants Congress to allot the first two weeks of its session next year exclusively to debating education legislation.

Schools don't need to force students to volunteer in their communities, new national data from the U.S. Department of Education suggest. The key to kindling a spirit of community service in a school may be simply to make those kinds of opportunities available.
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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