Monday, November 5, 2012

Get out and vote tomorrow........


Daily postings from the Keystone State Education Coalition now reach more than 1700 Pennsylvania education policymakers – school directors, administrators, legislators, legislative and congressional staffers, PTO/PTA officers, teacher leaders, members of the press and a broad array of P-16 education advocacy organizations via emails, website, Facebook and Twitter.

These daily emails are archived at http://keystonestateeducationcoalition.org
Follow us on Twitter at @lfeinberg

Education Voters Action PA bipartisan list of endorsements for Tuesday’s election.
If you want legislators who support public education then please support these candidates with your time, your money and your votes.

Education Voters Action of PA 2012 General Election Endorsements


Education Week’s Guide to the Presidential Candidates’ Positions on Education Issues
Before voting on Tuesday, check out the candidates’ positions on education issues. Education Week created an excellent guide - http://www.edweek.org/ew/collections/election2012/candidates-on-education.html

Mitt Romney Makes Education Pitch In Final Days Before Election

Huffington Post by Sabrina Siddiqui and Joy Resmovits Posted: 11/04/2012 5:52 pm EST
WASHINGTON -- For the last year, education advocates have been trying to get the subject of America's beleaguered public schools onto the agenda of the presidential election. Aside from a few mentions in the debates, the conversation has been pretty one-sided, with President Barack Obama consistently emphasizing the need to invest in education on the campaign trail -- and little mention of the subject from Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney in his own stump speech.
That appears to have changed in the final 72 hours leading up to the election, with Romney incorporating a few key lines on education into his "closing argument" speech in a last-minute bid to sway votes from women and Latinos -- voters who prioritize education but have favored Obama throughout the presidential race.

From presidential race to state initiatives, voters face policy choices

Education Week By Andrew Ujifusa and Alyson Klein October 30, 2012
Education policy and funding—from common standards and college access to the prospect of "doomsday" budget cuts—have been a steady theme in this year's presidential campaign, even as more specific K-12 debates lighted the political landscape in various states.
And with the strategic balance in Congress in play, along with the makeup of 44 state legislatures and the fate of numerous education-related ballot measures, the Nov. 6 elections could have a lasting impact on the direction of precollegiate policy.

The gang is all here: take a look at just some of the voucher, EITC & charter money influencing Tuesday’s election (and don’t forget to vote!):
For a Better PA Fund PAC Campaign Finance Report from 9/18/12 through 10/22/12
This PAC collected money from Fighting Chance PAC (See background here), Students First PAC (See background here) and Vahan Gureghian (See background here)

Fighting Chance PAC Campaign Finance Report from 5/15/12 through 9/17/12

PA Students First PAC Campaign Finance Report from 9/18/12 through 10/22/12

William Penn Foundation Fall 2012
Capitalizing Change: Our Strategic Vision and Priorities for the Next Decade
Since 1945, the William Penn Foundation has expressed Haas family values through its grantmaking. Our strategic plan, entitled Capitalizing Change, charts a vision and strategies consistent with the Foundation’s enduring values of respect, integrity, stewardship, collaboration, and accountability.
Capitalizing Change is designed to help Greater Philadelphia seize the opportunities of a rapidly changing world. Our grantmaking is driven by the passionate belief that Philadelphia can be one of America’s great cities.
We approach this work with urgency, pragmatism, transparency, and inclusivity. We leverage our philanthropic assets in highly focused ways for maximum impact in the Foundation’s three traditional areas of concern: children, creativity, and the environment.

Commentary: Parents deserve a better measure of school quality
by Helen Gym on Nov 02 2012 Posted in Blogger commentary
by Helen Gym
Every once in a while, it becomes apparent just how differently parents view high-quality education than do the reformers out there who are defining it purportedly for our own good. The GreatPhillySchools website (GPS) is just one example of this difference in viewpoints. 

Commentary: GreatPhillySchools is about empowering families
by thenotebook on Nov 02 2012 Posted in Blogger commentary
by Sharmain Matlock-Turner
For many years, I have witnessed how parents and caregivers in Philadelphia truly crave more information about our city’s schools. As evidence, in just two weeks, more than 10,000 Philadelphians have visited GreatPhillySchools, a new website for families to learn more about nearly all  of our city’s K-12 schools. As part of our longtime commitment to empowering families, the Urban Affairs Coalition is proud to be a partner in this citywide effort with the Philadelphia School Partnership and many others.

Published Online: November 1, 2012

Philadelphia District Suspends School Rating System, Seeks Fix

Education Week By Benjamin Herold, for NewsWorks, a Notebook news partner
The Philadelphia School District revealed Wednesday that its system for rating schools is faulty.
The District has suspended use of its "School Performance Index," or SPI.
District leaders are now seeking outside help to fix the complicated formula that converts more than a dozen factors into a single score given to every public school in the city, including charters.
For the last two years, SPI scores have been used to help guide a wide range of major decisions, including which schools should be closed down or converted into charters. It has also been used to evaluate charters' bids for renewal or expansion.

Published Online: November 2, 2012

Scores Drop on Ky.'s Common Core-Aligned Tests

Education Week By Andrew Ujifusa
Results from new state tests in Kentucky—the first in the nation explicitly tied to the Common Core State Standards—show that the share of students scoring “proficient” or better in reading and math dropped by roughly a third or more in both elementary and middle school the first year the tests were given.

There's still time to register for the Pittsburgh school library briefing on November 15th!
Join the Education Law Center, the Health Sciences Library Consortium, and the PA School Librarians Association for the release of findings of the Pennsylvania school library impact study on student achievement, and learn about the investments in school library programs needed to prepare 21st-century learners:

Education Policy and Leadership Center

Register Now! 2012 Pennsylvania Education Finance Symposium November 16th

The registration fee is $25 if paid by November 12, and $30 if paid after November 12 or on-site. Click here to register for the symposium.
Wildwood Conference Center Harrisburg Area Community College
Friday, November 16, 2012

PENNSYLVANIA EDUCATION POLICY FORUM
Why Investing in Early Education Matters, Even in These Difficult Economic Times - "Erie Region Breakfast Series" Monday, November 19, 2012
Continental Breakfast - 8:00 a.m. Program - 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.  
 Ambassador Center (I-90 & Peach Streets in Erie, next to the Courtyard by Marriott)
Sponsored by the Pennsylvania Association for the Education of Young Children and The Education Policy and Leadership Center
SPEAKERS:
Ron Cowell, President, The Education Policy and Leadership Center
Diane Robbins, Principal, Early Childhood Learning Center, Titusville Area School District
Jill Simmons, Vice President, Early Care and School-Age Enrichment, Greater Erie YMCA
Dr. James Tracy, Superintendent, Girard School District
Darlene Kovacs, VP Administrative Services, Early Connections - Success by 6 Kindergarten Readiness Program
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *  
Share school district successes and challenges in supporting quality learning experiences. Hear from local school districts and early learning providers about how they have worked together to maintain early learning as an integral part of the school districts' overall goals. Learn how quality early learning can contribute positively to a community's economic success.
 * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
While there is no registration fee, seating is limited and an RSVP is required.
Building One Pennsylvania – Fundraiser November 29th
Join us at our first fundraiser and awards ceremony to celebrate our progress in promoting inclusive, sustainable and economically prosperous communities.
Austin Room at IBEW Electrical Union 654
3729 Chichester Avenue, Boothwyn PA 19061

Thursday, November 29th from 6:00 – 8:00 PM
$100 per person • $75 for Building One Pennsylvania Member
HONOREES:
U.S. Senator Robert P. Casey, Jr.
U.S. Congressman Patrick Meehan
Estelle Richman, Senior Advisor to the Secretary, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
Isaac Dotson, Yeadon Economic Development Corporation
Tom Gemmill, St. James Episcopal Church, Lancaster
Rev. Marlon Millner, Norristown Municipal Council and McKinley Memorial Baptist Church

PLEASE RSVP TO ATTEND


Education Law Center invites you to a special evening December 5th
Honoring Len Rieser
Welcoming Rhonda Brownstein
And celebrating public education champions
Mary Gay Scanlon, Harold Jordan, Arc of PA, The Bridges Collaborative and School Discipline Advocacy Services
Food, Drink and Silent Auction
December 5, 2012 , 5:30 PM
Crystal Tea Room The Wanamaker Building
100 Penn Square East, Philadelphia

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