include two with local ties -- Dominique Colbert, a Loyola University student, and Dawanne M. Eugene, a Nicholls State University student from New Orleans. Along with Natasha Bernhardt of Louisiana State University, the students were chosen for the prestigious annual scholarships that help deserving minority students pursue scientific degrees.
The Lafayette School Board ,
in a split decision, refused to apologize to Sharon Huff after a teacher punished Huff's 7-year-old son for telling a classmate that his mother is gay. The case gained international attention when the child brought home reports stating he was disciplined for explaining "what being gay means." School Board President David Thibodaux and two board members dissented from the opinion.
The Bossier Parish School Board
administered a punishment that far exceeded the crime recently when it suspended a 15-year-old girl for a year because she brought Advil (a non-prescription painkiller) to school without a required doctor's note. The school system says Amanda Stiles' suspension is in line with its zero-tolerance drug policy, but this severe discipline makes us wonder what type of punishment is reserved for serious offenses.
James Lala ,
the former Abita Springs police chief, admitted he sold police badges, knowing the illegal badge-holders were using them to avoid paying Causeway tolls and to buy weapons available only to law enforcement personnel. In a recent plea deal with prosecutors, Lala admitted to the crimes and agreed to testify against two police lieutenants accused of selling restricted weapons on the street.