Ruth Benson, pioneering leader of state’s Education Department, dies at 91

A lifelong educator with an insatiable sense of curiosity, Ruth Evelyn (Larsen Randall) Benson delighted in connecting with students.

Benson reached the pinnacle of her profession when she broke new ground as Minnesota’s first female commissioner of education from 1983 to 1990.

But along the way, it was the special connection between teacher and student that perhaps resonated the most, said her daughter, Diane Randall of Washington, D.C.

“She believed teaching is a noble profession, that teaching could make the world a better place,” her daughter said.

Benson, of Apple Valley, died Sept. 10 after a brief hospitalization. She was 91.

Born March 4, 1929, on a farm in Underwood, Iowa, she became an elementary school teacher in Iowa and Nebraska, rising to principal and administrator of Omaha Public Schools beginning in 1967.

Her daughter said she was drawn to teaching, “because she relished learning, the human interaction between teachers

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New York education leader convicted for child sex crime

GREEN BAY, Wis. — A high-ranking New York City education official and former Wisconsin principal accused of swapping explicit sexual images with a 15-year-old boy has been convicted in federal court.

David Hay, 40, pleaded guilty Tuesday to child enticement and possession of child pornography. Court documents show that Hay exchanged emails with the boy. During the course of these communications, the defendant received sexually explicit digital images and videos from the child. Hay also provided sexually explicit images of himself to the 15-year-old.

Hay, of Brooklyn, New York, faces up to 20 years in prison. Sentencing is set for Dec. 18 in Green Bay.

Hay served as principal at Tomah High School from 2011 to 2014. Prior to that he was an administrator at Kettle Moraine High School in southeastern Wisconsin. Most recently, Hay served as deputy chief of staff to the New York City Chancellor of Schools.

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Riiid Labs, Leader in AI Education Solutions, Names Jim Larimore to Executive Team

SAN RAMON, Calif., Sept. 01, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Riiid Labs, a leader in AI education solutions, today announced the appointment of Jim Larimore as Chief Officer for Equity in Learning. In this newly-created leadership role, Larimore will drive Riiid’s strategic initiatives in building global partnerships to close gaps in equity, opportunity and student success by creating and delivering new AI education solutions to help students achieve their full potential.

Larimore will also lead the creation of a diverse and global network of universities, non-profit organizations and companies to attract top AI talent to participate in the EdNet Challenge, and encourage more women and people of color from all nations to enter the AI field. Riiid recently made its EdNet dataset, containing over 100 million interactions data, publicly available for research purposes.

“Jim has distinguished himself as an education pioneer and catalytic innovator for more than 20 years at some

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