Lawmakers OK bill to keep PSU fines in Pa. Corbett presses Kane on lottery Grad student sues over C-plus
HARRISBURG -- A bill designed to ensure that only Pennsylvania benefits from a $60 million fine that the NCAA levied against Penn State in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky child sexual abuse scandal was on its way Wednesday to Gov. Tom Corbett.
The House voted 194-2 to join the Senate in approving the measure, and Corbett's spokesman said the governor will sign it.
Sandusky, a former Penn State assistant football coach, is serving a 30- to 60-year prison sentence after his conviction on charges of sexually abusing 10 boys over several years, both on and off campus.
Penn State agreed to the fine last summer, as well as other sanctions, as part of a deal that averted a potential shutdown of its football program by college sports' governing body. Penn State has already paid the first of five $12 million installments.
The bill would require that fines of $10 million or more imposed on Pennsylvania institutions of higher learning be deposited into a state-administered account, and be spent on in-state programs that address the sexual abuse of children.
HARRISBURG -- Gov. Tom Corbett is pressing state Attorney General Kathleen Kane to say whether she'll approve a contract to hire a British firm to manage the $3.5 billion Pennsylvania Lottery.
Camelot Global Services' bid to take over lottery management from state employees expires Saturday. Kane has a little over three weeks to decide whether the 20- to 30-year contract is legal. In the meantime, the contract's legality is being challenged in court by Democratic lawmakers and the union that represents lottery employees.
Kane, a Democrat, isn't saying when she'll decide, but says it's disingenuous to suggest that the contract review is a simple, ministerial exercise.
EASTON -- Talk about grade inflation.
Graduate student Megan Thode wasn't happy about the C-plus she received for one class, saying the mediocre grade kept her from getting her desired degree and becoming a licensed therapist -- and, as a result, cost her $1.3 million in lost earnings.
Now Thode is suing her professor and Lehigh University in Bethlehem, claiming monetary damages and seeking a grade change. Thode took the class in fall of 2009.
Her instructor, Amanda Eckhardt, testified this week that she stood by the grade, saying Thode failed to behave professionally and thus earned zero out of 25 points in class participation, bumping her down a full letter grade. "I ... believed she received the grade she earned," Eckhardt said.
The C-plus prevented Thode, an otherwise A student, from going on to the next class and advancing in her professional therapist studies. She later received a master's degree in human development .
Her attorney, Richard Orloski, argued Eckhardt targeted Thode because she is an outspoken advocate for gay marriage. Eckhardt testified that while she believes marriage is between a man and woman, she would never allow her personal views to influence her treatment of students. She said Thode had outbursts in class, did not participate appropriately, was emotionally unstable and failed to heed a warning letter.