State funding shortchanges city schools
New York - Students in New York City are cheated out of hundreds of millions of dollars a year, and hence, a sound education, according to a civil ruling in the State Supreme Court. The plaintiffs, a coalition of parent, teacher, and civic groups, pointed to collapsing buildings, bathrooms long out of commission, and illiteracy among high school students as evidence of the disparity in funding between city and nonurban schools. The state argued that social backgrounds, not money, were behind achievement gaps. A state judge set a Sept. 15 deadline for the Legislature to reform funding.
Progress made following fatal dorm fire
Trenton, N.J. - One year after the fatal fire at Seton Hall University, New Jersey schools have taken significant steps to install dorm-room sprinklers. All 43 colleges and boarding schools affected by new legislation requiring sprinklers have submitted plans, and seven have completed the work, according to the Division of Fire Safety. In some cases, students will partially absorb the costs, estimated at more than $80 million.
Lawyer is new president of Bowdoin
Brunswick, Maine - Barry Mills, the newly appointed president of Bowdoin College, will leave a law career to pursue the cause of liberal arts. Currently deputy presiding partner at Debevoise & Plimpton in New York, Mills will don his new hat July 1. He graduated from the selective liberal arts school in 1972 and holds a doctorate in biology as well as a law degree.
Errors found in science textbooks
Raleigh, N.C. - Twelve of the most popular science textbooks used at middle schools nationwide are riddled with errors, according to researchers at North Carolina State University. The errors ranged from maps depicting the equator passing through the southern United States to a photo of singer Linda Ronstadt labeled as a silicon crystal.
Researchers said publishers for the most part either dismissed the panel's findings or promised corrections in subsequent editions.
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