* Winner: He enjoyed school so much he decided to become an educator. And because of Darrell White, Utah's students and teachers, particularly those in Davis County, are better off. White was recently named Utah Superintendent of the Year.

"I had such a rich and fun and rewarding experience as a student in public education it seemed the natural thing to do," he said of his career path that began as a teacher and then continued to administrator, college professor and now superintendent of the Davis School District over a space of 39 years. He now will join superintendents from throughout the nation to address educational issues in Washington, D.C.* Winner: Car buyers are benefiting from a price war. Automakers are luring customers into showrooms by giving rebates of up to $5,000, having lower sticker prices and providing financing rates below 1 percent.

The competition is so intense that some '99 models are cheaper than their '98 counterparts. Ford Motor Co., for example, is offering its flagship Taurus LX sedan at $1,000 less than the sticker price for a comparably equipped '98.

Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines.

Loser: Millions of students are being taught in facilities that are run down. According to the General Accounting Office, 14 million children - about a quarter off all schoolchildren nationwide - attend class in buildings that need significant repairs. Unfortunately, the GAO estimates the cost to build new schools and modernize old ones to be at least $112 billion.

Some states, including Virginia, Florida, California, Kentucky and Illinois, have allocated more money to repair schools. For others it will be a test trying to provide adequate facilities.

* Winner: India looks like it's going to follow Pakistan's lead and sign the nuclear test ban treaty. Both countries created considerable concern throughout the world when they conducted nuclear tests in May, sparking fears of a nuclear arms race in South Asia.

Wednesday Pakistani Prime Minister Nawz Sharif said his country was ready to adhere to the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, and on Thursday India's prime minister, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, said his country was prepared to conclude discussions on the treaty.

That's a nice twist to what had been one of the most disturbing indications of nuclear proliferation in years.