Ups and Downs gives a quick take on news of the week.
UP: Science students. Montana posted some of the very highest science scores in the nation on the National Assessment of Educational Progress administered in 2009 to fourth- and eighth-graders. According to results released last week, Montana's eighth-graders averaged 162 compared to a national average of 149. "These scores demonstrate that our schools are preparing students for the jobs of today and tomorrow," said Denise Juneau, state superintendent of public instruction.
UP: Community connection. Nearly 50 agencies and 200 volunteers assisted several hundred needy people during the Fifth Annual Project Homeless Connect. The one-stop, one-day event aims to bring a wide array of services together to get homeless people the services they need to get housing, jobs and a better life.
UP: Flying hay. When word went out that hundreds of horses were near starving on the range southeast of Billings, Montanans responded quickly and generously. Within days, equipment, helicopter service and more than 100 tons of hay had been donated in a humane response coordinated by the Northern International Livestock Exposition and the Yellowstone County Sheriff's Office. Those wanting to help may send checks to NILE Foundation, P.O. Box 1981, Billings MT 59103 or call 406-256-2495 for more information.