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Education Reporter

Education Briefs 
Phyllis Schlafly, noted conservative activist and founder of Eagle Forum, received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from Washington University in St. Louis. The award aroused protest among some faculty members, and especially in the women's studies department. The Board of Trustees unanimously agreed to defend its decision to honor Mrs. Schlafly. "Alumna Phyllis Schlafly's articulation of her perspectives has been a significant part of American life . . . serving as a lightning rod for vigorous debate on difficult issues where differences of opinion are profound and passionate, wrote the board. Eagle Forum Executive Director Jessica Echard responded, "Eagle Forum applauds Washington University for upholding the ideal that real diversity includes everyone, even conservatives!" (PRNewswire, 5-16-08)

The mayor of Hammond, IN accused schools in Gary of "giving [students] a day off and telling them to vote for Obama." Gary school administrators bused about 200 high school students 16 miles to the election office for early in-person voting in advance of the May 6 Indiana primary. Hammond Mayor Thomas McDermott Jr., a Clinton supporter, called it "completely unethical." "These kids come from the worst performing schools in the state of Indiana and we are giving them a day off to go vote for Obama. They can vote on election day like everybody else," he said. (Northwest Indiana Times, 4-24-08)

Boston public schools have begun recruiting bilingual teachers in Puerto Rico. Massachusetts eliminated bilingual education in 2002, but recruiters hope that Spanish-speaking teachers in math, science, and special education classes can give extra help to students with limited English skills. 40% of Boston public school students are learning English as a second language, and the majority of those students speak Spanish. (Boston Globe, 3-18-08)

72% of teens between the ages of 13 and 17 now have cell phones, a recent survey showed. Phones enable parents to stay in touch with their teens through phone calls and text messages, but can also make it more difficult for parents to supervise young teens' internet use and access as more and more cell phones are linked to the web. (Wall Street Journal, 4-23-08)

More employers are turning to "mommy SWAT teams" to fill temporary positions and handle crash projects. The mother who coined the "SWAT team" label says it stands for "smart women with available time" — moms who stay home with their children but enjoy going out to work on an occasional, per-project basis. Several firms, such as MomCorps in Atlanta, now help employers to draw on the skills of stay-at-home moms with experience in the corporate world or in other fields. (Wall Street Journal, 4-30-08)

June 2008 Education Reporter
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Education Reporter is published monthly by Eagle Forum Education & Legal Defense Fund with editorial offices at 7800 Bonhomme Ave., St. Louis, MO 63105, (314) 721-1213. The views expressed in this newsletter are those of the persons quoted and should not be attributed to Eagle Forum Education & Legal Defense Fund. Annual subscription $25. Back issues available at $2.
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