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EDUCATION with Student News

Quick Guide & Transcript: SAT scoring error, Week in Review

(CNN Student News) -- March 10, 2006

Quick Guide

S.A.T. SNAFU - Find out what it's like to receive an incorrect score on the SAT.

Storm Over Ports - Learn about developments that could diminish a storm of controversy over U.S. ports.

Week in Review - Review the stories that topped our newscasts during the week.



VERONICA DE LA CRUZ, CNN STUDENT NEWS ANCHOR: You've made it to Friday. Thanks for checking out CNN Student News! I'm Veronica De La Cruz at the CNN Center. A test of nerves: Some students who took the SAT last fall, find out a mistake was made in their test scores! A testy topic: A middle eastern-based company casts off plans to take control of six U.S. seaports. And a test of teddy bear talent: See the kind of stuff it takes, to score big in the doll-lympics!

First Up: S.A.T. SNAFU

DE LA CRUZ: Some of you may think the SAT is like eating your vegetables. You can probably find better ways to spend your Saturday. But getting a high score is good for you, if you're trying to get into college. Well, the college board, which makes the SAT, says a fraction of the students who took the test last October, might have received a lower score than they deserved. Kelly Wallace asked one victim, what that feels like.


KELLY WALLACE, CNN REPORTER: 18-year-old Robert Smith of Brentwood, New York, an honors and ROTC high school senior says he was shocked to learn his SAT scores were incorrect.

ROBERT SMITH, STUDENT: This was in October, and I am finding out in March, it's like 5 months later, it's already half a year, I've already done college and stuff like that.

WALLACE: Robert learned his overall score was actually 80 points higher... on the 2400 point exam. While writing was unchanged, there was a 30 point jump in reading and a 50 point jump in math; scores that might make him more competitive for Boston University -- his top college pick which rejected him.

SMITH: Like right here, I was at the bottom of Boston University and my math went to the top.

WALLACE: Robert is one of about 4,000 students who received a letter from the College Board, which administers the SAT, telling them due to a technical processing matter, They did not receive credit for some correct answers. 95 percent of the students' scores went up by 100 points or less.

KAREN SMITH, ROMERT'S MOTHER: I want to know why this happened, how this happened and why did it take so long to notify us.

WALLACE: The College Board first learned of the problem in December, after some students requested a review of their scores.

JIM MONTOYA, VICE PRESIDENT THE COLLEGE BOARD: Acting in a responsible way often takes more time than anyone would like, we needed to understand the scope of the problem and which students were in fact impacted.

WALLACE: The College Board has notified colleges and universities about the snafu, which comes at the height of the college admission season, with SAT scores often playing a critical role. Jacquelyn Nealon, Dean of Admissions at the New York Institute of Technology, says she's seen anywhere from 25 to 50 applicants who have been impacted, and has been reviewing those applications since she learned of the problem Tuesday.

JACQUELYN NEALON, NY INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY: It's easy to be a Monday morning quarterback. I would have loved to receive this information a couple of months ago, but we dealt with it when we received it.

WALLACE: As for Robert, he plans to re-apply to Boston University and to a few other schools he thought he had no chance of getting into. Kelly Wallace, CNN, Brentwood, New York.


Women's History Month

RACHEL RICHARDSON, CNN STUDENT NEWS REPORTER: As chairman and CEO of Xerox, Anne Mulcahy knows about far more than just making copies. Born in Rockville Center, New York in 1952, Mulcahy earned a bachelor's degree in English and journalism from Marymount College. She has spent most of her 30-year career at Xerox; starting off as a field sales representative and gradually moving up the ranks to hold senior management and executive positions. In 2002, she pulled Xerox out of a near-fatal slump, helping the company to stand out in the printing and copying business, despite a slew of competitors. In addition to heading up Xerox, Mulcahy also serves on the boards of directors at Catalyst, Citigroup and Target. Celebrating the achievements of Anne Mulcahy, this is Women's History Month.


DE LA CRUZ: At our web site, we've posted a new activity in honor of Women's History Month! It's all about the "E.R.A." And if you think that's just a baseball statistic, don't miss this chance to step into a whole new ballpark with!

Storm Over Ports

DE LA CRUZ: A storm of controversy looks like it's blowing over in Washington. A company based in the Middle East was in line to manage six U.S. seaports. But Congressional Democrats and many Republicans were afraid the deal would threaten U.S. security. President Bush said he'd veto any move to stop it. Congressional leaders said they had the two-thirds majority in both houses, to override a veto. Brianna Keilar explains why a political fight, may not be necessary after all now.


BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN REPORTER: After days of intense political maneuvering, the Dubai ports deal appears dead. Dubai Ports World, the company in the United Arab Emirates that was supposed to take over operational control of six U.S. ports, said Thursday it is transferring its interests in U.S. ports to an American company.

SEN. JOHN WARNER, (R) VIRGINIA: Because of the strong relationship between the United Arab Emirates and the United States and to preserve that relationship, DP World has decided to transfer fully the U.S. operation of P & O Ports North America to a United States entity.

KEILAR: The announcement came after Republican lawmakers told President Bush they had veto-proof majorities in both the Senate and House. The voluntary action by Dubai Ports World allows the White House to avoid a showdown with lawmakers. Still, questions remain about what this port deal means for future security; a concern that Democrats addressed even before the Dubai deal tanked.

REP. NANCY PELOSI, (D) CALIFORNIA: Democrats instead proposed that every port operation agreement be subjected to a 45 day review and that there be an up or down vote in both houses of the Congress before the agreement.

KEILAR: In Washington, I'm Brianna Keilar for CNN Student News.


Word to the Wise

AZUZ: A Word to the Wise...

proponent (noun) someone who argues in favor of something; an advocate

Source: www.m-w.comexternal link

Week in Review

DE LA CRUZ: Graduation season is just around the corner. But in California, high school seniors have one less reason to party. That story tops our week in review with Deanna Morawski.


DEANNA MORAWSKI, CNN STUDENT NEWS REPORTER: California is requiring high school seniors to pass a new "exit exam" in order to graduate. The test involves mostly 8th grade level math and 10th grade level English. Proponents say it's important to make sure graduates have the skills they need for the real world. But many students say it's just added stress.

T VINCENT ALDERSON, STUDENT: I'm really nervous about taking the test. This is my last year here so I got to pass this.

MORAWSKI: An estimated 15 percent of the state's seniors still have not passed the test. They'll have one more chance to take it before graduation.

Dana Reeve, the widow of the late actor Christopher Reeve, died Monday from lung cancer. She was a lifelong non-smoker and had announced last August that she was suffering from the disease. Reeve also headed the Christopher Reeve foundation, which funds research into treatment and cures for spinal cord injuries. She was 44.

In Virginia, the trial of Zacarias Moussaoui entered the penalty phase. Moussaoui is the only person charged in the U.S. in the September 11th terrorist attacks. Last April, Moussaoui pleaded guilty to conspiring with al Qaeda to hijack aircraft and join in other crimes. Jurors must now decide whether to sentence him to life in prison or the death penalty.

Authorities made three arrests in a recent string of Alabama church fires. The suspects are college students - ages 19 to 20. They're now charged in connection with nine fires in rural counties southwest of Birmingham. If convicted, the consequences will be steep.

ALICE MARTIN, U.S. ATTORNEY: They face the possibility of a minimum mandatory five years per church, if each church was charged. And five years under conspiracy.

MORAWSKI: As for motive, court papers say the crimes were a simply a joke that got out of hand. And that's your Week in Review. For CNN Student News, I'm Deanna Morawski.


Off the Beaten Path

DE LA CRUZ: Before we go... Penguins are flightless, but they sure weren't "unflappable" when seeing their very own movie! It's a story you'll find "Off the Beaten Path" with Carl Azuz.

CARL AZUZ, CNN STUDENT NEWS REPORTER: Don't call them bird-brains: Emperor penguins recently won an Oscar. But some folks at San Diego's Sea World wondered, would penguins watch a documentary about themselves? Well, the bird-ict is in...and it's...loud. Some seemed to like the penguin version of the "Miracle of Life"...though we suspect others were just checking out the chicks!

Now maybe you preferred the flick "A History of Violence." And after this event in Portland, these folks had one! Their weapon of dread is where you lay your head. But the group that once called itself the "Pillow Fight Club"...can breathe a lot easier than these Grecian flour flingers! That's flour like you bake, not like you pick. But the Carnival tradition that harnesses true flour power, draws far fewer people when it comes to the clean-up.

Well, there's no shortage of people who think teddy bears can fly.And at this event in Germany, gravity once again proved flying's for the birds.

NORBERT SCHABEL, TEDDY OLYMPICS ORGANIZER: There are several judging criteria for the synchronized ski jump. One is obviously the distance, but the other is the charm value.

AZUZ: After all, what's more charming than sending a stuffed sidekick to an untimely injury? That stuffs up another report from Off the Beaten Path! I'm Carl Azuz.


DE LA CRUZ: And that's a wrap for our week's last show! For CNN Student news, I'm Veronica de la Cruz.

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