State Sen. Michael Rubio, D--Shafter, is inviting high school and college students in the Bakersfield and Fresno areas to apply for fall internship opportunities at his district offices.

Students selected as interns will conduct policy and legislative research, assist with constituent issues, attend community meetings and events and assist with general administrative duties.

Interns are not paid, but school credit can be arranged.

Download 16th State Senate District intern applications at or contact Ruth Leon () in the Bakersfield office or Daniel Cisneros () in the Fresno office.

The fall internship application deadline is Sept. 28.

A University of Chicago study has come up with a novel way to measure the impact of teacher incentives on student test scores, and the results are interesting.

A team of economists studied students in Chicago Heights, a school district in a south suburb of Chicago where nearly all children qualify for free or reduced-price lunch and only 64 percent met minimum state achievement standards.

Researchers divided 150 teachers into three groups: one got no incentive, a second group was promised a $4,000 bonus later if their students did well in math, and a third group was given a $4,000 bonus up front that they were contractually bound to repay partially or completely if their students didn't demonstrate basic math proficiency.

The study found the test scores of students of teachers offered no bonus or a bonus after testing were about the same, but the students of teachers paid up front scored as much as three times higher than their peers in the other groups.

The study's authors attributed the gain to "loss aversion" on the part of teachers, which they said was a powerful motivator.

Read more about the study at:

-- Courtenay Edelhart, Californian staff writer

For more education news, go to The Californian's education blog, The Grade, at or follow The Grade's Twitter at