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Julie Underwood named Hicks Executive-in-Residence

ATHENS, Ohio (April 14, 2004) -- Julie Underwood, general counsel and associate executive director of the National School Boards Association, has been named the Ohio University College of Education's 2003 Samuel I. Hicks Executive-in-Residence. Underwood will be in Athens at the end of April to share her insights and experiences in school funding issues and education reform with students, faculty and staff of Ohio University, as well as public school officials from throughout Southeast Ohio.

undefinedOn Thursday, April 29, Underwood will deliver a keynote address titled "Funding Public Schools So All Children Can Succeed" at a luncheon meeting of the Coalition of Rural and Appalachian Schools, a partnership of the College of Education that comprises 133 school districts and other educational institutions in the 29-county region of Ohio designated as Appalachia. Also scheduled to speak at the meeting is Judge Linton D. Lewis, who presided over the school-funding trial DeRolph vs. State of Ohio.

On Friday, April 30, Underwood will meet with students, faculty and staff in the College of Education to talk more about school funding issues and democracy in education. One issue in particular that Underwood says she plans to explore is the No Child Left Behind policy, which she says is a "good concept gone bad."

"You can't argue against standards-based reform, but you can fault No Child Left Behind's implementation in terms of setting public schools up for failure through faulty identification and evaluation methods," Underwood says.

The Samuel I. Hicks Executive-in-Residence program was established in 1976 to honor Dr. Samuel I. Hicks, professor emeritus of educational administration at Ohio University, and is designed to recognize outstanding national leadership in education. Hicks, who died in 1999, dedicated more than 75 years to teaching, research and educational administration. His extraordinary devotion, achievement and service on behalf of higher education are the spirit in which the Hicks Executive-in-Residence award is presented.

Underwood, who says education is in her blood, has been a university professor, a university administrator, an employee at a state department of education and an attorney representing school districts. Both of her grandfathers were school board members; her father was a superintendent; and her mother, a special education director.

"Some people inherit shoe stores as family businesses; I got public education," Underwood says.

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Media Contact: Joy Rodgers, (740) 597-1947 or rodgerj1@ohio.edu

Media Note: Julie Underwood will be available for interviews from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, April 30. Contact Joy Rodgers at 597-1947 or rodgerj1@ohio.edu if you would like to schedule a time to talk with Underwood.

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