green is the new black

A friend of mine has introduced into my list of radar topics (things I track for PR, personal or fun) the current greening trend. “Just watch the business news,” she tells me. “It’s everywhere.”

I don’t know that I believed her, until I started tracking. I hate it when I’m so wrong.

Here are some news & headlines you may find interesting, if green is your color:

education news & links

Houston parents are concerned that “the Houston Independent School District’s move to combine its selective Vanguard programs with its standard gifted-and-talented offerings — could lead to a watered down curriculum for their children.” They are worried that this means the classes will lose their “academic edge.” I don’t know enough about the program to decide one way or another, but a side effect cited in the Houston Chronicle article includes pulling students from HISD schools into private schools.

Mamie Louis Payte, a former teacher whjo passed away recently (I think) left Alvin Community College half a million dollars. At least that’s what the Houston Chronicle reports. Wow!

Congratulations to the 10 seniors from six HISD schools earn Gates Millennium Scholarships. They are part of the 1,000 students selected nationwide from 11,000 applicants.

Houston-area eight-grader Anna DeSanctis won $10,000 for being one of the “top 10 youth volunteers for 2007.” The Houston Chronicle reports that she is a student at Holy Spirit Episcopal School.

The only way to tell this is to quote the School Zone blog: “If I told you that only 626 residents in the region’s third-largest school district voted in favor of a $365 million bond proposal today, you’d probably assume the measure failed miserably. And you’d be wrong. Those 626 votes were enough to pass the Aldine bond proposal by a comfortable 71 percent majority. In fact, 255 votes would have done the trick. Seeing as how I’m a proud Aldine ISD grad with solid math skills (Nimitz Cougars rule!), I can confidently tell you that those 626 ‘yes’ votes are worth $583,067 in bond money apiece.”

A local teacher is reportedly too scared to go back to work after one of her students assaulted her in class — landing 7 or 8 blows, some to her face, before other students were able to intervene. Teaching is a very dangerous profession these days… and not just because of this.

A correction in the published rankings for Pasadena Independent School District resulted in an increase in the rankings themselves. According to the Houston Chronicle, “Out of 97 schools overall, Pasadena’s South Houston High jumped from No. 92 to No. 73. Pasadena High moved from 85 to 60, Dobie soared from 71 to 43 and Rayburn moved from 68 to 33.”

Galena Park ISD school board recently approved to renovate Woodland Acres Middle School.

Channelview ISD voters turned down a $125 million bond that would have funded a new elementary school and a junior high.

Hillary Clinton says that all 4-year-olds should go to pre-K. This would be a $10 billion federal program. I wonder why she waited until she was campaigning to mention this idea?


library news & links

From the International Herald Tribune: “More than 1,700 people have complained to Hong Kong regulators that the Bible is overly sexual and violent, apparently to mock a recent ruling condemning a sex survey in a student newspaper.” I do get the irony and applaud the sentiment. However, personally, I always have trouble using the Bible to make a point.

Thanks for LibTalk for pointing to this: “Post a video that describes what you love about your library and how it serves your community and you could win the $10,000.00 grand prize in Thompson Gale’s ‘I Love My Library” video contest to split with the library you designate.” There are lots of local libraries that could benefit from this.


Public Relations, Marketing & Communications news & links

Scott Karp thinks that Every Newspaper Journalist Should Start A Blog. Why? Well, he has a lot of reasons. The one I liked: “Putting your career on a growth track by not defining yourself as a print journalist.” Good advice.

Barbara Ehrenreich at The Huffington Post has an incredible article about the fact that is recruiting reporters in India to write about Pasadena… California, I think. A must-read. (Special thanks to The Copywriter Underground for pointing me to this.)


Houston news & links

Are you ready for hurricane season? The ABC 13 Consumer Blog gives us Tips to get ready for a hurricane with your cell phone, which they got from AT&T. The tips cover ways your cell phone can help or play the focal point in your hurricane plan.

Houston-area eight-grader Anna DeSanctis won $10,000 for being one of the “top 10 youth volunteers for 2007.” The Houston Chronicle reports that she is a student at Holy Spirit Episcopal School.

M.D. Anderson just receive its largest gift ever from the T. Boone Pickens Foundation. As reported by the Houston Business Journal, “The charitable organization, formed late last year by the oil and gas industry leader and philanthropist T. Boone Pickens, has donated $50 million each to The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and the UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas.”