Education digest: Petition about Prince George’s schools plan; geography bee

maryland
Organizers hope to stop schools plan

Organizers of a petition drive to block Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker III’s plan to restructure the public school system from taking effect said during a news conference last week that they have a couple of hundred canvassers collecting signatures at megachurches, graduations and community gatherings as their deadline approaches.

Citizens for an Elected Board, a community activist group, must collect 8,000 signatures by May 31 to prevent the new structure, which gives Baker new powers, from taking effect June 1. They would then need 23,195 more signatures, or 10 percent of voters in the last gubernatorial election, by June 30 to place the issue on the November 2014 general election ballot.

The organizers said they did not know how many signatures they have collected so far. They are expecting the bulk of the petitions to be handed in this week.

Ovetta Wiggins

THE district
They know maps

Quick question: Name the peak in Ecuador with a summit that marks the point farthest from Earth’s center due to our planet’s bulge at the equator.

If you were Sathwik Karnik, 12, of Massachusetts, you’d know the answer is Chimborazo, and you’d have won the National Geographic Bee at Washington’s National Theatre. The victory came with a $25,000 college scholarship.

Sathwik , a seventh-grader at King Philip Regional Middle School in Norfolk, Mass., beat out 4 million fourth- through eighth-grade students nationwide with his exceptional knowledge of world geography. A local student, Akhil Rekulapelli, a 12-year-old seventh-grader at Stone Hill Middle School in Ashburn, came in fourth.

T. Rees Shapiro

Ovetta Wiggins covers Maryland state politics in Annapolis.
T. Rees Shapiro is an education reporter.

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