Tuesday, March 01, 2005
‘BIG BROTHER’ GETS HIS SHINS KICKED IN CALIFORNIA SCHOOL
Go Big Ed reported Feb. 14 that “proximity cards” were being put in place at North Star High School in Lincoln and the district offices of Lincoln Public Schools. Among other things the system tracks who is in the building. Cost: 10 times the cost of a lock-and-key security system. Since then, a major flap erupted in Sutter, Calif., near Sacramento, over a tracking device students were required to carry on their persons to track their movements inside school. Parents went ballistic; it got on “The Today Show” and Fox News, and the ACLU got into the act. Bottom line: that hot potato was dropped in the trash. Wonder if they heard about it in Lincoln.
ED LEADER MACTIER’S HUSBAND PASSES AWAY
Longtime State Board of Education member Ann Mactier of Omaha has lost her husband to complications from diabetes. J. Allan Mactier, 82, was president of the Omaha-based company now known as ConAgra from 1954 to 1974. Mrs. Mactier, former board member of the Omaha Public Schools, has been a leader on the local, state and national levels for reading reform and a return to phonics.
MINNESOTAN ANNOUNCES FOR CONGRESS
It’s so rare to find politicians like Mrs. Mactier who really “get it” about what’s wrong with public education in this country. Speaking of great state education leaders, Cheri Yecke, former Commissioner of Education for the State of Minnesota, has announced for the U.S. Congress. She was instrumental in getting rid of the Profile of Learning in that state, the Bill Clinton-style, nonacademic, Goals 2000 standards similar to those with which Nebraska is saddled. Minnesota put knowledge-based standards in place, instead, along with an objective performance rating system that allows for school-to-school comparisons, in contrast to Nebraska’s meaningless and practically useless multiple assessments system. Mrs. Yecke, a wife and mother of two grown daughters, formerly was a member of the Virginia Board of Education, served as the Virginia Secretary of Education, and worked in the U.S. Department of Education.
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