Quick Takes: Appeals Court Revives Suit on Immigrant Tuition, SUNY's Search, California Budget Deal, Palin's Unorthodox Stance, House Approves Extension of Loan Availability Law, MBA With Ethics Focus, Lighting Up to Protest Smoking Ban

September 16, 2008
  • A California appeals court on Monday revived a lawsuit -- rejected by a lower court's judge -- challenging a state law giving in-state tuition rates to some high school graduates who cannot demonstrate a legal right to live in the state, The Contra Costa Times reported. The class action attacking the law says it is unfair to U.S. citizens who are from outside California and who pay high, out-of-state rates. The law on immigrant tuition applies to students who attended California high schools for at least three years, and who pledge to seek U.S. citizenship. The appeals court said that the law created an improper "surrogate residence requirement."
  • After a search of more than a year, finalists have been identified for the next chancellor of the State University of New York, The New York Times reported. During that year, the state's economy has deteriorated, and the Times reported that more than one promising candidate had withdrawn because of the financial and political uncertainty facing the system.
  • California lawmakers were poised Monday night to end an 11-week budget impasse, voting on a compromise that would likely not impose additional cuts to the state's three higher education systems. While budget officials from California State University had not seen details of the plan, a University of California system spokesman, Ricardo Vazquez, said that funding would remain essentially flat, meaning that the $98.5 million cut originally proposed at the beginning of the budget process would be restored, in line with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's revision unveiled in May. Meanwhile, the "general framework" for the California Community Colleges System, said a spokesman, Ron Owens, appeared to be an earlier compromise from last month that would support enrollment growth at 2 percent but otherwise keep funding at 2007-8 levels. Not all lawmakers were happy with the compromise, which wouldn't raise taxes -- seen as a key concession for the bill to pass -- and would, critics argue, shift tax burdens into the future.
  • Culture warriors of the right have found in Gov. Sarah Palin a heroine they can believe in. But it turns out that the Republican nominee for vice president has taken at least one unorthodox stance: She supports Title IX. USA Today noted that the former high school basketball star told Alaska Business Monthly after becoming governor that "I had a great upbringing under Title IX," adding that "I can't imagine where I'd be without the opportunities provided to me in sports. Sports taught me that gender isn't an issue.... In sports, you learn self-discipline, healthy competition, to be gracious in victory and defeat, and the importance of being part of a team and understanding what part you play on that team." Given that bashing Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 has found favor in conservative circles in recent years, you might expect such a statement to lead to more complaints about the vetting process used to select Palin. But National Review considered the issue and reassured its readers, writing that Palin wasn't "talking about what [Title IX] wrought -- the quotas, the killed opportunities for guys." The magazine explained that "Title IX had a good intention. It's what feminists have done with it that's bad."
  • The House of Representatives on Monday approved legislation that would extend for a year a law enacted last spring that has been credited with ensuring the continued availability of federal student loans. The new legislation, H.R. 8669, would extend the education secretary's authority to allow loan guarantee agencies to carry out the functions of the so-called lender of last resort program on a school-wide basis, and extend the secretary’s authority to purchase loans from lenders in the federal guaranteed loan program.
  • George Washington University plans today to unveil a new M.B.A. curriculum that infuses ethics issues throughout the program, rather than with one course or as a few lectures, The Washington Post reported.
  • About 50 students at Clarion University of Pennsylvania held a protest Monday against a new ban on smoking anywhere on state-owned college or university campuses. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported that many of those in the protest lit up. When university officials handed these students yellow cards warning them of possible fines, some students put tobacco on the cards, rolled them up, and smoked them, too.
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