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also assessment; and high schools and colleges must communicate results to each other.  The potential pay-off is great.  Fewer students will need remediation, which simultaneously reduces the cost of educating those students and increases the likelihood those students will graduate.  Also, the plan should improve the average level of student achievement and result in a larger pool of well-prepared college applicants.  The article is available to Chronicle subscribers at http://chronicle.com/weekly/v53/i17/17b02001.htm.

December Issue of Mississippi Economic Review and Outlook Now Available

The December 2006 issue of the Mississippi Economic Review and Outlook, which is published biannually by the Center for Policy Research and Planning of the Institutions of Higher Learning, is now available online at http://www.ihl.state.ms.us/urc/economic/review/outlook_dec06.pdf.  According to Dr. Marianne Hill, senior economist and editor of the Outlook, the remarkable comeback of the casino industry on the Mississippi Gulf Coast was just one of the positive developments in the state’s economy in 2006. She forecasts that, following the slow pace of Coastal reconstruction this year, housing construction will pick up in 2007. The article “Rebuilding Housing along the Gulf Coast” summarizes policy recommendations of the recent RAND Institute study. Other articles of interest in the Outlook include “National Economic Outlook: A Pause that Refreshes,” “Mississippi Economic Outlook: A Count-down to Takeoff,” “Mississippi Wage Gap Persists,” and “Hispanic Population in Mississippi.”   The Economics Department of the Center for Policy Research and Planning also offers other economic and demographic information on their website, http://www.ihl.state.ms.us/urc/planning/econdept.htm.

IHL Board Executive Office Holiday Schedule

The IHL Board Executive office will close for the holiday season at 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, December 20, 2006, and will reopen on Tuesday, January 2, 2007, at 8:00 a.m.  The System Review will take a holiday publication break as well.  Expect to receive the next issue on Friday, January 12, 2007.

University News

MISSISSIPPI VALLEY STATE UNIVERSITY NEWS                                                                

MVSU Awarded $1.2 million National Science Foundation Grant Approximately 1,500 students and 25 teachers from 11 schools in a ten-county Delta area will be learning more about math, science, and technology, thanks to a $1.2 million grant awarded by the National Science Foundation to Mississippi Valley State University professors. The grant will be used to increase the state test scores in science of ninth grade students and ultimately increase the number of students entering the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines as desired careers. “Information Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers Using Catfish and Their Environment as a Model” was written by Dr. Abigail Newsome, Dr. Louis Hall, Dr. Mack Felton and Dr. Udai Kudikyala, all members of the MVSU Department of Natural Sciences and Environmental Health. Funding for the project will enhance the capabilities of MVSU in exploring greater research opportunities and building its capacity to compete for expanded funding opportunities while increasing opportunities for high school students and teachers in the region. Each participating school has been given a laptop computer, testing instruments to measure chemicals, and other supplies. Through the three-year program, schools will increase the use of information technology in science education as students increase their performance in science and mathematics. Scotland Fisheries of Itta Bena is participating in the project by allowing students to visit its ponds for science experiments.

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