June 2, 1999

This Issue
Vol. 18, Issue 38
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Without impact-aid funding from the federal government, Chuck Squier says, his district would simply shut down.

School administrators reacted with surprising acceptance to the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling last week that districts may be sued for damages if they fail to respond to student sexual harassment of other students.

The Ohio Supreme Court ruled last week that the Cleveland voucher program passes muster under the religion clauses of the federal and state constitutions, but that it had to be invalidated because of the way it was enacted.

At Humphreys Avenue Elementary School in East Los Angeles, bilingual kindergarten teacher Rosa helps 5-year-old Yoni count seashells on a felt board. Yoni's lips move, counting silently in Spanish as he touches each shell.

Tom Vander Ark, the superintendent of the Federal Way, Wash., schools, has been named the executive director of education initiatives with the Gates Education Initiative, a new segment of the Gates Learning Foundation in Redmond, Wash. Beginning July 1, Mr. Vander Ark, 39, will lead K-12 education projects for the foundation, which was created by Bill Gates, the chairman of Microsoft Corp.
As national leaders and state lawmakers continue to push for ways to help children stay out of trouble when they're out of school, a new study shows how hard it can be to improve the supply and quality of after-school programs.
California is going high-tech in its effort meet a growing demand for credentialed teachers.

A "Lessons of a Century" article about the history of the curriculum that appeared in the May 19 issue did not specify when J. Myron Atkin served as the dean of the education school at Stanford University. He held that post from 1979 to 1986.

Chicago Won't Hold Pupils Back
For a Third Time

The biggest factor in determining whether young people earn a bachelor's degree is their participation in a strong academic curriculum in high school, according to a federal study scheduled to be released this week.
Teacher-licensing tests fall far short of measuring the knowledge that teachers need to bring students to high levels of achievement, a report released last week concludes.

Charity Begins in the Classroom
For Computer Teacher:
A computer teacher in Rochester, N.Y., is personally trying to ensure that all the students in his school have computers of their own.
Academically gifted students who live in rural areas are often overlooked because their schools have inadequate resources and are isolated from cultural opportunities, a report concludes.

More teachers and students say school violence has decreased compared with 1993, even while they report their personal experiences with such violence have either increased or remained the same, a national survey released last week shows.

A federal judge has found that the Bedford Central school system in New York violated the First Amendment rights of several Roman Catholic students by sponsoring certain activities with religious overtones, such as selling "worry dolls" and directing students to make construction-paper cutouts of a Hindu god.

Some of the nation's top education researchers--including scholars long thought to be in opposing camps in the so-called reading wars--have come together to create new guidelines for K-3 literacy programs.

Almost immediately after California voters approved a ballot initiative last June to severely curtail bilingual education in their public schools, pundits and policy analysts wondered whether similar measures would crop up in other states.

The implementation of Proposition 227 can be likened to a tornado, according to many of the researchers and state policy experts who gathered here recently to talk about the 1-year-old California law.

Fewer than half of New York state's 4th graders made the grade on a new literacy test administered in January, state officials announced last week.
While thousands of Massachusetts students sweated through two weeks' worth of tough state assessments this spring, scattered groups of protesters decided that rather than take the tests, they'd test the system.

S.C. Lawmakers Pass
$1.1 Billion Bond Bill

A $1.1 billion bond bill for school and college building projects has squeaked through the South Carolina House in what some observers are calling the most contentious vote since last November's elections.

Outstanding public schools in Minnesota will have the opportunity to train teachers as they see fit under new legislation.

The following is a summary of the fiscal 2000 budgets for schools. The totals for K-12 education include money for state education administration, but do not include federal, flow-through dollars.

The Federal Communications Commission voted last week to fully fund the federal E-rate program in its second year, despite continued opposition to the initiative from key members of Congress.


Debate on how to revamp President Clinton's class-size-reduction plan has already begun, with two contrasting proposals taking form even before the first checks are mailed to districts this summer.

Congressional Republicans say they want the National Center for Education Statistics to be free from the day-to-day political influence of future presidential administrations.

LeMay Elementary School boasts top-notch education programs and an immaculate, recently renovated facility for the children of the military personnel stationed here at Offutt Air Force Base.


Following are excerpts from the U.S. Supreme Court's majority and dissenting opinions in Davis v. Monroe County Board of Education.
Two weeks ago, President Clinton went to Colorado to commemorate the one-month anniversary of the Columbine High School shootings. Occurring on the day that a copycat gunman had shot six of his classmates in a Conyers, Ga., high school, the May 20 visit was a natural forum for decrying violence in movies, profanity on the Internet, and the surfeit of firearms throughout our society.
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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