Tuesday, January 15, 2013

PA House Appoints Committee Members


Daily postings from the Keystone State Education Coalition now reach more than 1800 Pennsylvania education policymakers – school directors, administrators, legislators, legislative and congressional staffers, PTO/PTA officers, parent advocates, teacher leaders, education professors, 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


“School Choice Week”, a marketing/media campaign for privatization of a public good, is coming around again at the end of January.  Here are 2 pieces that provide some context for it….
Selling Schools Out
The Nation by Lee Fang, November 2011
Under the banner of high-tech progress, corporate lobbyists have rammed through legislation privatizing K-12 education across the country.
Education reform as a business
Washington Post Answer Sheet Blog by Valerie Strauss on January 9, 2013
Did you know that the education sector now represents nearly 9 percent of the country’s gross domestic product? That for-profit education is valued at $1.3 trillion, and is one of the largest U.S. investment markets?


PA House Appoints Committee Members
PA Environmental Digest Daily Blog, January 14, 2012
The House adopted House Resolution 19 (Micozzie-R-Delaware) appointing members to each of the standing committees.  Some key committee assignments include:
( * indicates new members)
Appropriations
Republicans: Adolph-Chair, *Aument, Boback, Christiana, Day, Denlinger, Ellis, *Everett, Gingrich, Grell, *Grove, Killion, Millard, *Milne, Mustio, *Oberlander, O’Neill, Peifer, Petri, Pyle, Sonney
Democrats: Markosek-Chair, *Boyle, Bradford, Brownlee, *Carroll, Conklin, *Dean, Kula, Mahoney, O’Brien,M, *Parker, Sabatina, *Santarsiero, *Wheatley
Education
Republicans: Clymer-Chair, *Aument, Christiana, Emrick, *English, Fleck, Gillen, *Grove, O’Neill,B, Rapp, Reese, Rock, Simmons, Tallman, *Truitt
Democrats: Roebuck-Chair, Carroll, *Clay, Conklin, Harkins, Longietti, *Molchany, O’Brien,M, Santarsiero, Wheatley

PA Senate Education Committee
Senate website
Officers: Folmer, Mike , Chair, Smucker, Lloyd K., Vice Chair, Dinniman, Andrew E. , Minority Chair, Scarnati, Joseph B., III, ex-officio
Majority: Browne, Patrick M., Corman, Jake, Greenleaf, Stewart J., Tomlinson, Robert M.
Minority: Leach, Daylin, Teplitz, Rob, Williams, Anthony H.

PA Senate Appropriations Committee
Senate website

PA Department of Education website
Timeline for Events Related to 2013-2014 PA Budget Process
Special Session Act 1 of 2006
2013-2014 Timeline (PDF):  Fiscal Year SDs | Calendar Year SDs 

Pain for gain in school plan

Philadelphia inquirer opinion Tuesday, January 15, 2013, 3:01 AM
By Natalye Paquin, Helen Cunningham, and John K. Binswanger
Natalye Paquin is the CEO of Girl Scouts of Eastern Pennsylvania. Helen Cunningham is the executive director of the Samuel S. Fels Fund. John K. Binswanger is the chairman of Binswanger. Paquin and Cunningham are also members of the board of the Philadelphia School Partnership.
After hearing from students, parents, teachers, and community leaders during an extensive listening tour, Superintendent William R. Hite Jr. released a detailed plan for the future of Philadelphia's schools last week. The plan sets out the goal of improving academic results for all students while emphasizing that making the district financially stable is a necessary step on the path to accomplishing that goal.

Harrisburg School District Chief Recovery Officer Gene Veno to hold first advisory committee meeting
By Eric Veronikis | everonikis@patriot-news.com  on January 14, 2013 at 3:52 PM
Gene Veno, Harrisburg School District's state-appointed chief recovery officer, will hold his first advisory committee meeting at the district's administration building, 2101 North Front St., Building #2, at 6 p.m. on Wednesday.  The committee, comprised of school board members, Superintendent Sybil Knight-Burney, a district principal, district business manager, residents, a superintendent from a neighboring district and employee union representatives, will help Veno develop and implement a financial recovery plan for Harrisburg

PSBA launches task force on career and technical education
PSBA website 1/14/2013 Steve Robinson, Dir. of Publications and PR
The Pennsylvania School Boards Association (PSBA) Board of Directors recently created a new Career and Technical Education Task Force to help direct and focus the association's efforts to advance this critical component of public education and workforce development in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.  The task force will develop recommendations regarding programming and services that can strengthen workforce development strategies and enhance collaboration and interaction among career and technical schools, participating school districts, the business community and other stakeholders.

Common Core Standards: arguments against — and for
Washington Post  Answer Sheet Blog by Valerie Strauss on January 15, 2013 at 4:00 am
In a recent post, Yong Zhao, presidential chair and associate dean for global education at the University of Oregon’s College of Education, asked five key questions about the Common Core State Standards, which are coming to 46 states and the District of Columbia. He concluded: “The efforts to develop common curricula nationally and internationally are simply working to perfect an outdated paradigm. The outcomes are precisely the opposite of the talents we need for the new era.” Here is a response to that post from Marc Tucker, president of the non-profit National Center on Education and the Economy and an internationally known expert on reform, explains why this approach is actually harming rather than helping schools.

Sec. Duncan Issues Letter to School Supts, 'New Year, Second Term' Letter

AASA Website January 14, 2012
Earlier today, Secretary Duncan issued a letter to local school system leaders, talking about his first term as Education Secretary, looking to his second term, briefly mentioning the Sandy Hook tragedy.

Seattle superintendent urges all teachers to give MAP tests
Seattle Times Posted by Linda Shaw January 14, 2013 at 11:29 AM
Seattle School Superintendent José Banda sent a message Monday to teachers, principals and other staff in response to Garfield High teachers’ boycott of the Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) exams.  While a district review of all its tests is underway, Banda said, he still expects all teachers to give the exam, and asks they do so by February 22, when the testing window ends.
Still no word about what might happen to teachers who refuse.

Pushback on Standardized Testing

 Walt Gardner  
After years of warning about the downside of standardized tests to no avail, critics are finally seeing signs that the tide may be turning. Three recent developments stand out in this regard.

When Teachers Refuse to Give a High Stakes Test

 Peter DeWitt  
19 teachers at Garfield High School in Seattle, Washington refused to administer the district required Measure of Academic Progress (MAP) to ninth grade students on January 9th. After many years of out of control high stakes testing in the U.S. it was bound to happen sooner or later. It was another example of some strong teachers who are putting the needs of their students first.

FairTest Urges Nation to Join Seattle in Testing Boycott
Schools Matter Blog January 14, 2013
The country's leading testing reform organization today announced its support for the boycott of Seattle Public Schools' Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) exam launched by teachers at Garfield High School. National Center for Fair & Open Testing (FairTest) Executive Director Dr. Monty Neill said, "Children across the U.S. suffer from far too much standardized testing that is misused to judge students, teachers and schools. We applaud Garfield High educators who refused to administer these useless exams and urge others to join in."


Committee of Seventy
PA 2013 Election Calendar
IMPORTANT PENNSYLVANIA ELECTION DATES 2013

Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center
SAVE THE DATE: 2013 Pennsylvania Budget Summit Feb. 21st
Many Pennsylvanians have sent a clear message to Harrisburg in recent months: The state budget cuts of the past two years were too deep. It is time to once again invest in classrooms and communities.  Next month, Governor Tom Corbett will unveil his 2013-14 budget proposal. Join the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center for an in-depth look at the Governor's proposal and an update on the federal budget -- and what they mean for communities and families across Pennsylvania.

2013 Pennsylvania Budget Summit
Thursday, February 21, 2013, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Hilton Harrisburg, 1 North Second Street, Harrisburg, PA
Registration is free and lunch is included.
REGISTER TO ATTEND

EPLC 2013 REGIONAL WORKSHOPS FOR SCHOOL BOARD CANDIDATES

The Education Policy and Leadership Center, with the Cooperation of the Pennsylvania School Boards Association (PSBA) and Pennsylvania Association of School Business Officials (PASBO), will conduct A Series of Regional Full-Day Workshops for 2013 Pennsylvania School Board Candidates.  Registration is $45 and includes coffee/donuts, lunch, and materials.  
Philadelphia Region Saturday, February 2, 2013 – 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Montgomery County Intermediate Unit, 1605 W. Main Street, Norristown, PA 19403
Harrisburg Region Saturday, February 9, 2013– 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Pennsylvania School Boards Association Headquarters, 400 Bent Creek Boulevard, Mechanicsburg, PA 17050
Pittsburgh Region Saturday, February 23, 2013 – 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Doubletree Hotel Pittsburgh/Monroeville, 101 Mall Blvd., Monroeville, PA 15146
To register, please click here.

2013 PSBA Leadership Symposium on Advocacy and Issues
April 6, 2013 The Penn Stater Convention Center Hotel; State College, PA
Strategic leadership, school budgeting and advocacy are key issues facing today's school district leaders. For your school district to truly thrive, leaders must maintain a solid understanding of these three functions. Attend the 2013 PSBA Leadership Symposium on Advocacy and Issues to ensure you have the skills you need to take your district to the next level.

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