Quick Takes: FCC Statement Could Be Great News for Colleges, Phoenix Falters, Reading Problems for High School Grads, County-by-County Education Stats, Washington State Alters Education Requirements, Berry to Receive Settlement in Suit

March 1, 2006
  • A brief filed by the Federal Communications Commission this week could suggest that colleges will not need to spend billions of dollars to comply with a federal electronic-security regulation. The brief comes in response to a legal appeal by college groups for a narrower interpretation of an FCC regulation -- which has greatly alarmed college groups -- that could be read to require colleges to reconfigure their entire computer networks. The FCC brief, however, states that the agency only wants the portion of college networks that connect to broader networks to be covered by the rules.
  • The University of Phoenix saw its stock price fall Tuesday after it told investors it would miss earning targets this quarter, amid stalled enrollment and advertising efforts, the Associated Press reported. Following the reports, the stocks of several other for-profit companies also experienced drops.
  • Just half of high school graduates are prepared to do the sort of reading of complex texts that is typically required in the first year of college or upon entering the work force, ACT says in a new report. The testing service found that only 51 percent of the 1.2 million students who took the ACT in 2005 met its "college readiness" standard, and that students seem actually to be going backwards: More students are on track to do college-level reading in the 8th and 10 grades than are actually ready to do so by graduation time.
  • The Lumina Foundation has introduced the Education Needs Index, which provides county-by-county data on educational attainment, demographics, and economic conditions.
  • Washington State University has altered requirements for its education students such that they are no longer required to demonstrate their suitability for teaching careers in ways that critics said punished conservative students. The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, which has led criticism of the old policy, is praising the university for its new approach.
  • Berry College, in Georgia, has reached an agreement with two alleged co-conspirators of a former employee in which the two will pay the college $2.35 million. Berry had sued, charging them with illegal real estate transactions and the sale of timber from Berry land. Lawyers for the accused could not be reached for comment.
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