News Briefs for Monday, Dec. 4

CFTL To Release Report on California's Teaching Workforce

The Center for the Future of Teaching and Learning (CFTL) will release its annual report on California's teaching workforce Wednesday. The report, "California’s Teaching Force 2006: Key Issues and Trends," will detail findings on challenges confronting the state's educators and policymakers. According to preliminary information released today, "While the report finds progress toward reducing the shortage of teachers, it raises concerns about low student achievement and the implications for the state's ability to meet the proficiency requirements of NCLB. The report also highlights the need for continued vigilance in efforts to reduce teacher shortages, particularly in special education, mathematics and science and in certain geographic regions." The report is scheduled to be released Wednesday morning and will be available on the organization's Web site.

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Virginia High School To Team with Orbital Sciences Corp. To Launch Satellite

The Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in Alexandria, Va., will team up with Orbital Sciences Corp. to launch the first-ever student-built satellite. The program is "designed to inspire high-achieving high school students with a hands-on experience that will introduce them to the challenges, excitement and wonder of space," according to a document released by both organizations. The two groups will hold a press conference Wednesday to provide more details on the program, and we'll bring you more details as they become available.

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BenQ Launches Fast 19-Inch LCD Display

BenQ has launched its new FP93G X+, a new 19-inch LCD display targeted toward high framerate applications. The new model offers a 2 ms response time (gray to gray), with performance similar to that of a CRT display. The new slim-bezel model (13 mm bezel thickness) also offers a brightness of 300 cd/m2 and a contrast ratio of 800:1, and it includes both DVI and D-sub (analog) ports. Pricing has not been announced, but BenQ says the new unit will begin shipping this month.

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Math Flash Goes Universal Binary

Fast Rabbit Software has released Math Flash 4.2. Math Flash s a shareware tool for elementary school students practicing math skills. Using a flashcard-style interface, the program offers addition and subtraction practice with single-, double- and triple-digit problems; options for the number of problems to be presented; an optional timer; and the ability to present problems either vertically or horizontally. The new version is a Universal Binary build, adding native support for Intel-based Mac systems.

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Gen YES Releases Guide to Student Leadership

Generation YES has released a new guide called "From Vision to Action: Including Student Leadership in Your Technology Plan." The guide is designed to provide education professionals with information on getting students involved in a district technology plan. It includes "research, sample language, practical suggestions, six models of student involvement and a planning worksheet," according to Gen YES.

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TetraData Wins Education Technology Award

TetraData has won an InnoVision Technology award for its DASH dashboard and data portal solution. The InnoVision awards recognize technologies and programs that impact education in the South Carolina Upstate region. DASH is a browser-based software tool that allows administrators to monitor attendance, student scores and graduation rates, and data can be sorted by various parameters, such as class and grade. The InnoVision award granted to TetraData was the 2006 Innovation in Education Award.

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About the author: Dave Nagel is the executive editor for 1105 Media's educational technology online publications and electronic newsletters. He can be reached at

Have any additional questions? Want to share your story? Want to pass along a news tip? Contact Dave Nagel, executive editor, at

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