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Power crisis cuts into school spending

Sacramento, calif. - California teachers may have to bear some of the financial burden caused by their state's energy crisis next year. In its effort to triple state reserves to $3 billion, the legislature is considering cutting a new program introduced by Gov. Gray Davis to reward teachers for the improved performance of their students. Governor Davis, who was elected in 1999 largely on a platform of reforming the state's ailing public schools, has been forced to accept a $570 million cut in proposed school funding in the 2001-2002 budget.

SUNY guarantees its graduating teachers

Albany, N.y. - In response to widespread concern over the quality of the nation's teachers and teacher-preparation programs, the trustees of the State University of New York have offered to pay for additional classes if any SUNY alum within two years of graduation doesn't measure up to expectations. The guarantee is part of a new program at SUNY, which graduates 6,000 prospective teachers in 16 teacher colleges each year.

UCLA enters venture-capital business

Los angeles - Anderson Business School at the University of California at Los Angeles has joined Stanford and Cornell universities in establishing a venture-capital fund that will invest in high-tech start-ups and donate profits to the school. Alumni have donated $500,000 so far, and investments will mirror bigger, for-profit investments made by the donors' own companies. Backers of the new practice say it is a safer alternative to exposing a university's own endowment to the marketplace.

Report cards going online

cupertino, calif. - Software systems allowing parents and teachers to access student grades, test scores, class schedules, homework assignments, discipline referrals, and attendance records over the Internet have increased dramatically over the past year. An official at Apple-owned PowerSchool estimates 2,700 school districts now use such programs. PowerSchool, which costs a school district about $14, 500, deals with security concerns by using encrypted passwords for access, similar to software for tracking stock portfolios.

(c) Copyright 2001. The Christian Science Monitor

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