News in Brief: Feb. 3

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February 3, 2009

12:17 AM

*ATO chapter officially receives charter*

The Virginia Kappa Kappa Chapter of the Alpha Tau Omega Fraternity at the College of William and Mary was officially given its charter this past Saturday. The ceremony was held at the Wren Chapel at 12 p.m. and was restricted to members of the former colony, alumni of ATO and officials from the national fraternity, including CEO Wynn Smiley. The ceremony was followed by a banquet at the Hospitality House.

Smiley presented the charter to the brothers. It was accepted by former president Will Bleser ’09 and current president Erik Siedow ’10. The fraternity consists of 38 men and has grown significantly since its colonization in 2006.

*McLaughlin appointed to state Board of Education*

The Dean of the College of William and Mary’s School of Education Virginia L. McLaughlin has been appointed to serve on the state Board of Education, according to the Daily Press. As a member of the board, McLaughlin will help set statewide curriculum standards, establish high school graduation requirements, and determine guidelines for teachers, principals and other school personnel.

She will also be responsible for establishing state testing and assessment programs, in addition to setting accreditation standards for schools, and implementing the No Child Left Behind Act.

*Higher education among top lobbying industries*

Educational institutions spent more than $102 million last year lobbying Congress and federal agencies, making education the seventh-highest lobbying “industry” on a list published by the Center for Responsive Politics, according to the Chronicle of Higher Education. The overwhelming majority of the spending came from higher education institutions.

The State University of New York was the highest spender in 2008, spending $1.6 million on lobbying. Corinthian Colleges spent $1.3 million while the University of Texas spent close to $1.2 million. These were the only three higher education institutions to spend more than $1 million last year.

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