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VENTURA COUNTY NEWSWATCH

March 10, 1994|Adrianne Goodman

CENSORSHIP CENSURE: Gov. Pete Wilson has admonished state education officials for deleting excerpts of the works of Pulitzer Prize-winning authors Alice Walker and Annie Dillard from a new state test (A3). . . . Wilson criticized the decision in a letter to the State Board of Education. Some Ventura County educators support Wilson's move. . . . "These writers are very high-quality literary figures," said Susanna Arce, assistant principal and curriculum director at Ojai's Nordhoff High. "It's amazing what people find fault with."

NO BEER HERE: Simi Valley schools have received $4,000 from the Washington-based Beer Institute to expand anti-drug programs. . . . The money, from the institute's community assistance fund, will be used to teach elementary schoolchildren "lessons about healthy lifestyles, respect for their bodies and some refusal skills," district official Rebecca Wetzel said. . . . Funding requests from schools are up, institute spokesman Jeff Becker said. "They, like everybody else, are having money problems," he said.

SADDLING UP: What price glory? . . . That question may cross the minds of Ventura County's handful of custom saddle makers, who face an array of painful hazards to produce their high-quality work (Ventura County Life, Page 24). . . . The craftsmen go to great lengths to build custom seats. Accidents--hands cut by knives or even tough sewing thread--are common. . . . One saddle maker has an unusual first-aid tool: Super Glue. "I glue the cuts together," Steve Gonzalez said.

PLAYING TO WIN: Michael Tate and the No. 1-ranked Ventura College Pirates will play Cosumnes River tonight as competition begins for the state championship (C10). . . . Known for his intensity on the court, the sophomore center epitomizes the team's motto: "We Play Hard." . . . Tate helped lead the Pirates to last week's victory over Imperial Valley. . . . "I think we have a real good chance of winning the whole thing if everyone stays focused," he said.

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