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Posted February 28, 2005

March NEWS & VIEWS

[Items relating to the situation of contemporary young people]


THREE STUDENTS ARRESTED FOR CYBER BULLYING
(January 2005) WAFB, a news station in Baton Rouge, LA, reported authorities arrested three Loranger High School students for cyber bullying. Kris Wartelle with the Attorney General's Office said, "We're lucky it didn't escalate to something even worse."
www.wafb.com/global/story.asp?s=2774728&ClientType=Printable

RELIGIOUS COLLEGES GROWING
(January 6, 2005) The Opinion Journal, from The Wall Street Journal, reported America's 700-plus religiously affiliated colleges and universities are enjoying an unprecedented surge of growth with soaring enrollments. The Council for Christian Colleges and Universities, an organization of four-year liberal-arts schools dedicated to promoting the Christian faith, said attendance rose 60 percent between 1990 and 2002. www.opinionjournal.com/la/?id=110006121

SINGLE SEX ED GAINING GROUND IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS
(January 8, 2005) The Washington Post reported that same-sex classes rose in 154 public US schools in the current school year, as compared to four public schools eight years ago. According to the National Association for Single Sex Public Education, a nonprofit group created by Montgomery County physician Leonard Sax, the number represents 35 public schools that are completely single sex and 119 that are coeducational but also offer single-sex educational opportunities. www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A57611-2005Jan7.html

FLORIDA SHERIFF ORDERS 1,800 TASERS FOR USE IN SCHOOLS
(January 8, 2005) The Florida Times Union, Jacksonville.com, reported Taser International Inc., an Arizona-based company, recently sold 1,800 stun guns to the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office, which plans to use them in public schools.

COLLEGE DEGREE STILL PAYS, BUT IT'S LEVELING OFF
(January 13, 2005) The New York Times reported that according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, college graduates earn nearly 45 percent more on average than those with only a high school diploma, but it has been stuck in that range since late the 1990's. http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?
res=F30E16FB3C5C0C708DDDA80894DD404482

MIDDLE SCHOOL BULLYING AND HARASSMENT THRIVING
(January 13, 2005) The Denver Post reported that metro area officials said, when young students cross the line between mischief and a criminal act, determining it as an act of bullying is not simple. Kenneth Trump, President of National School Safety and Security Services, a Cleveland-based school safety consulting firm said, balancing the rights of the accused with those of the victim is one of the many challenges schools face when managing intimidation and bullying. "Unfortunately, especially at the middle school level, sexual harassment and bullying is the most common form of school violence we hear about." Bill Woodward, a Director at the Colorado University Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence added that there is a failure to manage. "It seems like we are in denial about bullying."

HEROIN EPIDEMIC IN BOSTON SUBURBS
(January 14, 2005) The Boston Herald reported the street drug Heroin has moved into suburban high schools across Massachusetts. "You have multiple overdoses happening across the commonwealth that people don't know about,'' said State Rep. Robert Fennell (D-Lynn), who filed legislation to mandate overdose reporting. Some say Heroin is as easy to get as booze and is as cheap as $4 a bag these days.
http://news.bostonherald.com/localRegional/view.bg?articleid=63464
.

WASHINGTON JUVENILE JUSTICE USING MENTORS
(January 24, 2005) The Easterner, Eastern Washington University's Online Newspaper, reported that teens at the Juvenile Rehabilitation Administration are sentenced to a mentor commitment time ranging from 31 days to a couple of years. The program interviews juvenile justice teens who want to have a mentor and then interviews the mentor volunteers to match people with similar interests.
www.easterneronline.com/vnews/display.v/ART/2005/01/24/41f71f8c8a589

ONLY ONE IN SIX RECOGNIZES INTERNET ADVERTISING
(January 27, 2005) eSchool News reported the Pew Internet and American Life Project found that only one in six users of internet search engines can tell the difference between unbiased search results and paid advertisements. Nancy Messmer, director of library media technology for the Bellingham, WA school system, said that a major part of this is understanding the forms and features of online information. She said students need to scan the screen to understand the information and what the graphics and symbols stand for to figure out the difference between advertisements and the main information.
www.eschoolnews.com/news/showstoryts.cfm?Articleid=5471

INHALANT ABUSE ON THE RISE AMONG CHILDREN
(January 28, 2005) The Washington Post reported the most reliable annual survey on drug abuse showed the one group where abuse is on the rise is with children using inhalants. The concern is that new brain imaging research shows that the chemicals can produce lasting changes in the brain, as well as heart, kidney and liver damage.
www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn/A30968-2005Jan23?language=printer

SOCIALLY ISOLATED TEEN HACKER JAILED
(January 29, 2005) The Seattle Times reported US District Judge Marsha Pechman gave Jeffrey Lee Parson the minimum sentence of 18 months in prison for releasing a version of the Blaster computer worm into the Internet in 2003. The judge gave a more lenient sentence because of Parson's history of mental-health problems and his terrible home life. Parson was a high school senior in 2003 when he downloaded a copy of the Blaster Internet worm. He modified the worm by adding a program that gave him secret online access to other computers that were infected. Parson infected 48,000 computers and caused $1.2 million in damage, according to prosecutors.

DC GANGS RECRUITING YOUNGER CHILDREN
(January 30, 2005) The Washington Post reported that investigators said ethnic gangs lured hundreds of local children as young as nine over the past few years. This has given them the leverage to spread fear and extend their reach into the most affluent suburbs with parents struggling to keep their children safe. Officials now fight the gang violence on suburban streets, after-school clubs and the middle and elementary schools. Authorities reported at least 12 suspected gang-related slayings in Northern Virginia in the past four years. www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A47558-2005Jan29.html

BRAIN IMMATURITY COULD EXPLAIN RISKY TEEN DRIVING
(February 1, 2005) The Washington Post reported car crashes kill more teenagers than any other cause. A National Institutes of Health study suggests that the region of the brain that inhibits risky behavior does not fully form until age 25, a finding with implications for a host of policies, including the nation's driving laws. www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A52687-2005Jan31.html?referrer

CANADA CONCERNED OVER UNEXPLAINED DEATHS IN CHILDREN TAKING ADDERALL
(February 9, 2005) The FDA reported that Health Canada suspended marketing of Adderall XR (extended release) from the Canadian market due to concern about reports of sudden unexplained death (SUD) in children taking Adderall and Adderall XR. SUD is associated with amphetamine abuse and reported in children with underlying cardiac abnormalities taking recommended doses of amphetamines. Children taking Adderall without structural cardiac abnormalities appear to be a very small number of the SUD cases. At this time, the FDA cannot conclude that recommended doses of Adderall causes SUD, but is carefully evaluating the data. www.fda.gov/cder/drug/InfoSheets/HCP/adderalHCP.htm

SCHOOL USES RADIO ID ON STUDENTS
(February 9, 2005) ABC news reported a story by the Associated Press that a grade school in Sutter, CA requires all students to wear radio frequency identification badges that track their every move. The school imposed the system without parental input as a way to simplify attendance taking and potentially reduce vandalism while improving student safety. In addition to the privacy concerns, parents worry that the badge information might wind up in the wrong hands and endanger their children. They also worry that radio frequency technology may carry health risks. http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/wireStory?id=486057&page=3

FLORIDA TROUBLED TEEN HOME TO CLOSE
(February 11, 2005) The Sun Sentinel reported a troubled teen facility for delinquent girls in Lantana, FL, run by Psychotherapeutic Services, will close by March 1. The State refused to renew the company's license after reported fights and allegations of child abuse plagued the halfway house. Since Psychotherapeutic Services took over in September 2003, the facility experienced a high turnover of staff and administrators.

SCHOOL SECURITY COMES AT A PRICE
(February 14, 2005) The Burlington County Times in Pennsylvania reported that funding for school security has its limits. Ted Campbell, owner of Fortress Security, a Cherry Hill firm that specializes in securing schools, said expenses for providing students and staff with identification cards or training staff to recognize suspicious activity is relatively small. While other measures, such as video cameras, electronic access controls and metal detectors, range greatly in price. Acting New Jersey Gov. Richard Codey, instructed state police to conduct a risk assessment of each public school in the state by the end of the year and develop a checklist for schools to follow for assessing security funding with $100,000 from the Federal Homeland Security Department.
www.phillyburbs.com/pb-dyn/news/112-02142005-449824.html

ONLY 32 PERCENT OF NEW YORK'S '02 GRADUATES READY FOR COLLEGE
(February 14, 2005) NYnewsday.com posted a story by the Associated Press that reported on a study that showed only 32 percent of New York's class of 2002 left high school qualified to apply to college. In comparison, the study by the conservative Manhattan Institute said the national graduation rate was 71 percent and 34 percent of all students who graduated, qualified for college. www.nynewsday.com/news/local/manhattan/ny-stgrad0215,0,5917958.story? coll=nyc-moreny-headlines

CANADIAN PROBLEMS WITH FIVE-YEAR-OLD SPECIAL NEEDS STUDENT
(February 18, 2005) The Toronto Star reported that seven daycares have thrown out a five-year-old Canadian boy who struggles with Oppositional Defiant Disorder. He has two suspensions from Junior Kindergarten and nearly six weeks of absences from school. The boy requires an educational assistant before he can return, but there are none available right now. This little boy's case illustrates one of the biggest challenges facing Canadian school boards who are trying to ensure they do not disrupt the learning of other children while dealing with increasing numbers of high-needs students.
www.thestar.com/NASApp/cs/ContentServer?pagename=thestar/Layout/
Article_Type1&c=Article&cid=1108680613153&call_pageid=968332188492
& col=9687939721


MORE QUESTIONS ON ANTIDEPRESSANTS
(February 18, 2005) The Washington Post reported that an analysis by Oxford University showed how adults taking popular antidepressants such as Prozac, Paxil and Zoloft are more than twice as likely to attempt suicide as patients given sugar pills. This study of 702 controlled clinical trials involving 87,650 patients is the most comprehensive look at the subject because it counted suicide attempts and included patients treated for a variety of conditions, including sexual dysfunction, bulimia, panic disorder and depression. A professor of epidemiological psychiatry at Oxford University, John Geddes, wrote in a commentary that accompanied the studies that adults with severe depression should consider drug treatment, but milder symptoms should not receive medication.
www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A33389-2005Feb17.html

AFFORDABLE HOUSING PROPOSAL AIDS THOSE LEAVING FOSTER CARE
(February 19, 2005) The Palm Beach Post reported that a program designed to help abused and abandoned kids when they leave foster care, the Turtle Nest Village program, plans' to raise $3 million to provide struggling teens a home. Executive Director Elizabeth Brown said she wants to make sure these young people coming out of foster care have the availability of apartments in Palm Beach County. The Turtle Nest Village provides financial advice, a savings plan and guidance when the teens' leave the State's foster care system. National statistics show that 45 percent of those leaving state care experience homelessness within a year. www.palmbeachpost.com/localnews/content/local_news/
epaper/2005/02/19/s1b_housing_0219.html

SURVEY-CHILDREN NEED ADULT INTERACTION
(February 19, 2005) The Mercury News reported a survey of some 15,000 Silicon Valley children showed how the lack of seemingly minor adult interaction can influence a youth's attitude. Only 18 percent of middle and high schoolers believe the community values children and youth, 25 percent said parents and other adults' model positive, responsible behavior and 25 percent said their schools provide a caring, encouraging environment.
www.mercurynews.com/mld/mercurynews/living/education/10932309.htm?1c

THIRD GRADERS CUFFED BY POLICE
(February 19, 2005) The Philadelphia Daily News reported that authorities arrested three elementary school-girls for violating the school district's ban on weapons. The trio injured three other girls while playing with mace during recess. Although state law and the school district's code of student conduct bans all types of weapons, the students may not have realized they had a weapon and may be allowed to remain in school. www.philly.com/mld/dailynews/news/local/10943356.htm

Copyright © 2005, Woodbury Reports, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
(This article may not be reproduced without written approval of the publisher.)


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