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Education Reporter

Education Briefs 
A Rhode Island elementary school plans to track children electronically through computer chips inserted in or on their backpacks. Officials from Aquidneck School defended the program on the grounds of safety and efficiency, since the chips will enable the school and parents to track when students get on and off of the school bus. The American Civil Liberties Union of Rhode Island protested the use of computer chips to track children, calling the program "a solution in search of a problem." "The only rationale offered . . . for this significant intrusion is to allow school officials to know whether students boarded the right bus. We would certainly hope that this is a goal that school district procedures already address without the need to tag and track students like cattle," wrote the ACLU in a letter to the school. (Associated Press, 1-7-08)

Due to fears for children's safety, publishers of children's books are editing out anything that looks "risky," such as a picture of a boy standing on a ladder. Author and illustrator Lindsey Gardiner complains that her publishers have also told her to remove from her books scenes depicting sharp objects and children walking alone. In her most recent book, Who Wants a Dragon?, one scene showed a dragon toasting marshmallows on the flames from his nostrils. The publisher demanded that Gardiner change the scene, saying "it looks dangerous and goes against health and safety." (Telegraph, 11-19-07)

Two former students of Touro College in New York pleaded guilty to paying a college official to change their grades on transcripts. Their guilty pleas allowed them to avoid the possibility of jail time; instead, the court sentenced them to community service and $1,000 each in fines. The cases against the school officials, who altered transcripts for at least 50 people since January 2007, are still pending. The officials changed grades and in some cases added false degrees to transcripts, for fees of between $3,000 and $25,000. (Associated Press, 12-13-07)

February 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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