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By Erica L. Green, The Baltimore Sun | March 19, 2014
Maryland has faced several challenges in fulfilling its $250 million promise to overhaul the way it educates students and evaluates educators, the U.S. Department of Education reported Wednesday. In a report on the state's progress in reaching goals in the third year of the federal Race to the Top program, the department identified the greatest obstacles: implementing the Common Core standards, creating new teacher and principal evaluations, and building new data systems. The department assessed progress in 11 states and the District of Columbia that were among the first to sign on to Race to the Top, a $4.35 billion program created by President Barack Obama to encourage school reforms.
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NEWS
By Bill Satterfield | March 14, 2014
In a commentary published March 6 in The Baltimore Sun, Why is O'Malley giving poultry polluters a free ride?, the authors, both of the Food & Water Watch organization, claim that the chicken companies operating on Maryland's Eastern Shore are the "bay's biggest polluters" and that they are getting a free ride on the backs of the taxpayers. Also, they claim that chicken manure, a heavily regulated and locally produced organic fertilizer, is the cause of "massive pollution" of the Chesapeake Bay. The facts speak otherwise.
NEWS
By John Fritze and The Baltimore Sun | March 12, 2014
WASHINGTON -- Rep. C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger, the top-ranking Democrat on intelligence issues in the House, is proposing to end the bulk collection of telephone data by the National Security Agency -- scaling back a program at the center of the controversy over the reach of government spying. The proposal, which Ruppersberger described as a set of principles, would discontinue the government's collection of the phone data. Instead, intelligence agencies would have to obtain a court order to access similar data already retained by telephone providers, Ruppersberger said in an interview.
NEWS
February 28, 2014
I am writing in outrage over this constant revelation of security breaches involving our most private of data ( "UM forms task force to identify any further data vulnerabilities," Feb. 25). I demand that they pass a law limiting any data collection to the bare minimum needed to complete the current business transaction and that all such data be deleted upon final payment or termination of the business activity. The law should go further in that businesses or institutions must notify the person they are collecting data on exactly what it is they are digitizing and obtain written permission to do so. This week it's the University of Maryland, last week it was Yahoo (who, by the way, never notified me about anything)
NEWS
February 25, 2014
One of the main reasons so many people may be financially harmed by the database theft at the University of Maryland ("UM technology chief says stolen database was not encrypted," Feb. 21) is because the university felt the need to acquire so much personal information from people. I see no reason a college would need the Social Security number of anyone, besides an employee. It seems to me that only the Social Security Administration and organizations that deal directly with it need our Social Security information.
NEWS
By Carrie Wells, The Baltimore Sun | February 25, 2014
A week after the University of Maryland learned it was the target of a sophisticated data breach, President Wallace D. Loh said Tuesday that the university would extend free credit protection services to the 309,000 students, alumni and employees affected from the one year it had previously announced to five years. The university discovered last week that the Social Security numbers, birth dates and names of all students, faculty and staff issued a university ID card at College Park and at the Universities at Shady Grove in Rockville since 1998 had been stolen.
NEWS
By Sean Welsh, The Baltimore Sun | February 25, 2014
Annapolis Police Chief Michael Pristoop issued an apology Tuesday for inaccurate statements he made about deaths related to the legalization of marijuana in Colorado. Pristoop, in testimony regarding legalization of marijuana, stated that overdoses on marijuana led to more than 30 deaths on the first day the drug was legalized in Colorado. That data was based upon a hoax story that ran on satirical and comedy websites. "I apologize for the information I provided concerning the deaths.
NEWS
February 24, 2014
As one who has been working on pesticide legislation for a while as a beekeeper and as president of the Central Maryland Beekeepers Association, I'd say you hit the mark in your recent editorial on the subject ( "Understanding pesticide risks," Feb. 19). The bill that is coming up does only one thing: provide for a $10 per registration surcharge to support data collection. Yet to be defined are what data is collected, who gets to see it and how granular the data will be. Our concern is that the way the data is collected and used will be so diluted as to be useless.
NEWS
February 24, 2014
Hackers who stole confidential information on more than 309,000 current and former students and faculty from computers at the University of Maryland College Park last week had to penetrate multiple layers of security to get at the data, and school officials still don't know exactly how they did it or who they were. The sophisticated attack, which compromised Social Security numbers, birth dates, university ID numbers and other personal information, was a stark reminder of how vulnerable the nation's institutions are. School officials moved quickly to respond to the breach, which apparently took place sometime between 4 a.m. and 5 a.m. Tuesday and was discovered by staffers a few hours later.
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