Justice Dept. joins suit accusing Oracle of overcharging U.S.

The Justice Department has joined a whistle-blower in accusing business software giant Oracle Inc. of defrauding the federal government by overcharging for software, reports the New York Times. In a civil suit filed in federal court on July 29, the Justice Department said that Oracle had failed to give the government the same discounts on software that it provided to commercial customers. A contract in place with Oracle from 1998 to 2006 required that Oracle notify the government of fluctuations in the price of its products and to match discounts made to commercial clients, according to the complaint. The software in question was valued at hundreds of millions of dollars, the Justice Department said. Oracle declined to comment. Paul Frascella, a former Oracle employee, acted as a whistle-blower in May 2007 by lodging his own complaint against Oracle on similar grounds. In April, the government provided notice that it would look into the matter. Now it has joined Frascella’s complaint. According to the complaint, Oracle sold $1.08 billion of software under the contract in question to a wide range of government agencies, including the Defense, Education, and Justice Departments and the military…

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Free online curriculum expanding to middle grades

SAS Curriculum Pathways offers inquiry-based activities in English, math, science, social studies, and Spanish.
SAS Curriculum Pathways offers inquiry-based activities in English, math, science, social studies, and Spanish.

An online instructional resource for students in grades 8-12 that has been available to schools free of charge since December 2008 soon will include content for sixth and seventh graders as well.

SAS Curriculum Pathways, from North Carolina-based SAS Institute, a leading maker of business analytics software, provides web-based lessons and activities in the core subjects of English, math, social studies, science, and Spanish.

Lessons take an inquiry-based approach that is intended to develop students’ higher-order thinking skills. The educational software has won a CODiE Award from the Software and Information Industry Association for best K-12 instructional solution overall in 2008 and best instructional solution for English in 2009, and it’s a CODiE Award finalist this year in math.…Read More