Established in 2006, the Keystone State Education Coalition is a growing grass roots, non-partisan public education advocacy group of several hundred locally elected, volunteer school board members and administrators from school districts throughout Pennsylvania. Our mission is to evaluate, discuss and inform our boards, district constituents and legislators on legislative issues of common interest and to facilitate active engagement in public education advocacy.
Pennsylvania Education Policy Roundup for July 12, 2013: More than 2250 PA education policymakers now have the Keystone State Education Coalition Policy Roundup ready with their morning coffee.
Daily postings from the Keystone State Education
Coalition now reach more than 2250 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 regulatory agencies,
professional associations and education advocacy organizations via emails,
website, Facebook and Twitter.
More than 2250 PA education policymakers have the
Education Policy Roundup from the KeystoneState Education Coalition
ready with their morning coffee. If you
have colleagues or coworkers who would like to be added to our list please have
them send their name, title and affiliation.
KeystoneState Education Coalition:
Pennsylvania Education Policy
Roundup for July 12,
More than 2250 PA education policymakers now
have the KeystoneState Education Coalition
Policy Roundup ready with their morning coffee.
Special education funding panel holds inaugural
lawmakers are staring down a funding formula that some say is a recipe for a
budgeting disaster. It's the
commonwealth's way of paying for federally-required special education services,
and it's the subject of a special commission whose recommendations for legislative
fixes are due this fall.
In an op-ed
piece in the Inquirer on July 7, three Philadelphia
civic leaders argued that Philadelphia schools must get help, then went on
to support the financial package emerging from Harrisburg and City Hall to
address the District’s financial crisis. The largest component of this $273
million package is the “$133 million in projected savings from a new collective
bargaining agreement to be negotiated with the Philadelphia Federation of
might ask, are teachers expected to be the solution for a problem not of their
making? Somehow the notion has been put forth and reinforced that Philadelphia teachers are
excessively compensated and should make concessions to balance the District’s
renewed special interest attacks at the capitol in Harrisburg, the fight for eliminating the
unfair school property tax begun by 79 grassroots taxpayer groups across the
state is making some real progress. Across
the 11 counties we represent, the number one question we hear at our town hall
meetings is: When will the legislature eliminate school property taxes?
crowd filled BethlehemTown Hall today to lobby for the approval of a
new Lehigh Valley Charter High School for the
Arts building. Its efforts
weren't needed as the city planning commission gave its unanimous approval to
the new East Third Street
school after holding it up last month.
AASA Installs President and President-Elect for
Minichello ALEXANDRIA, Va.,
July 10, 2013 –
Amy F. Sichel, superintendent of the AbingtonSchool
and David Pennington, superintendent of the Ponca City Public Schools in Ponca City, Okla., were
installed as the AASA’s president and president-elect, respectively, for
2013-14. Sichel succeeds Benny Gooden, superintendent of the Fort Smith Public
Schools in Fort Smith, Ark., as the association’s president. Gooden
will remain on the executive committee as immediate past president. Sichel and Pennington were elected by the
AASA membership last year and were officially sworn in at an installation
ceremony and reception held in conjunction with AASA’s 2013 summer governance
meetings in Arlington, Va.
Va., July 10,
At a time when reauthorization of theElementary and
Secondary Education Act is moving forward, superintendents from across
the country are meeting with members of Congress today on Capitol Hill to
discuss pressing issues facing our nation’s schools. The Congressional visits are part of AASA’s Legislative Advocacy Conference,
taking place at the Crystal Gateway Marriott in Arlington, Va.
News Service By MARLENE KENNEDY July 11, 2013
ALBANY, N.Y. (CN) - A New York City charter
school operator claims the state has no right to audit it, and asked a judge to
stop the state comptroller from doing so.
Success Academy Charter Schools-NYC sued state Comptroller Thomas
DiNapoli and his office and New
in Albany County Supreme Court. SuccessAcademy
claims that a 2009 ruling by New York's
highest court found the Legislature overstepped its bounds by passing
legislation in 2005 that authorized the comptroller to audit charter schools. Despite fine-tuning in 2010 that resurrected
the audits, they're still unconstitutional, SuccessAcademy
Charter schools - public schools financed by taxpayer money but independent of
local school districts - have been permitted in New York since 1998. They're designed to
offer parents an alternative to local public schools.
Protests Planned Against Nation’s Largest
Charter Operator | Diane Ravitch’s blog
Briefs: by Sharon Higgins; posted by Diane Ravitch –11 Jul 2013
was written by Sharon Higgins, a parent activist and indefatigable blogger in Oakland, California.
Her blogs include “Charterschoolscandals,” wherein she tracks the amazing
variety of graft, theft, corruption, scandals, and other predictable
consequences of deregulation of public money with little or no oversight (I.e.,
privatization). She has written on many occasions about the proliferation of
Gulen-inspired charters, which are now the largest chain in the nation.
weekend, hundreds of people from all over the country, mostly Turkish
Americans, are traveling to Saylorsburg,
Pennsylvania, to protest
Fethullah Gulen at his remote compound in the Poconos. Among other activities,
Gulen’s followers (a.k.a. the “Gulen Movement”) operate a global network of
schools, including the largest charter school network.
Louisiana teachers unions sue state for $200 million in aid
diverted to private schools under voucher law recently ruled unconstitutional
Clips July 11,
to The Times-Picayune, the Louisiana Association of Educators
(LAE) and several local teachers associations have filed a class-action
suit charging that the state owes local school boards $199 million as a result
of the Louisiana Supreme Court decision striking down a portion of the state’s
private school voucher law. The Louisiana School Boards Association
(LSBA) is also considering filing suit for about $65 million.
Education Week By Alyson Klein Published Online: July 8, 2013
article access courtesy of Edweek.org.
waivers from provisions of the No Child Left Behind Act are almost evenly
divided on whether they will take U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan up on
his offer of extra time to begin using new teacher-evaluation systems to decide
which educators to hire, fire, or promote.
Department of Education has decided to allow states that received waivers by
the summer of 2012 to push back the deadline for using their new evaluation
systems. Initially, schools were supposed to have those systems fully in place
Petrilli don’t seem to have the same accountability concerns when it comes to
charter schools and vouchers……LAF
Education reform a test
CHESTER E. FINN
JR. and MICHAEL J. PETRILLI | 7/10/13
education to a long list of vexing policy issues for today’s fractured
Republican Party. It’s not that complicated at the state level, where dozens of
GOP governors have, over the years, proven their mettle by promoting higher
standards, greater accountability and wider parental choice. But in Washington, Republican
presidents and members of Congress have struggled mightily to find an approach
that both embraces reform and respects a limited federal role.
right needle for Republicans to thread. Though Democrats never admit it, Washington is clumsy at best, and wildly incompetent at
worst, when it comes to improving schools from the shores of the Potomac. That should surprise no one — at least three
levels of bureaucracy separate the secretary of education from actual
classrooms. Federal carrots and sticks, no matter how carefully engineered,
can’t overcome this fundamental challenge.
Yinzers - Save the Date: Diane
Ravitch will be speaking in Pittsburgh
on September 16that . Location and details to
Save the Date: Diane Ravitch will be
speaking in Philly at the Main Branch of the Philadelphia Free Library onSeptember 17 at . Details to come.
Know Your Child’s Rights! 2013-2014 Special Education
of PhiladelphiaJuly 9, 2013
year-long Know Your Child’s Rights! seminar series on special
education law continues in 2013-2014 with day and evening trainings
focused on securing special education rights and services. These seminars are intended for parents,
special education advocates, educators, attorneys, and others who are in a
position to help children with disabilities receive an appropriate education.
Every session focuses on a different legal topic, service or disability and is co-led
by a LawCenter staff attorney and a guest
topics include Tips for Going Back to School; Psychological Testing, IEEs and
Evaluations; School Records; Children with Autism; Transition Services;
Children with Emotional Needs; Discipline and Bullying; Charter Schools;
Children with Dyslexia; Extended School Year; Assistive Technology;
Discrimination and Compensatory Education; and, Settlements. See below for
descriptions and schedules of each session.
PSBA members will elect
officers electronically for the first time in 2013
in 2013, PSBA members will follow a completely new election process which will
be done electronically during the month of September. The changes will have
several benefits, including greater membership engagement and no more absentee
Below is a
quick Q&A related to the voting process this year, with more details to
come in future issues of School Leader News and at
www.psba.org. More information on the overall governance changes can be found
in the February 2013 issue of the PSBA Bulletin:
PASA-PSBASchool Leadership Conference
October 15-18, 2013 | Hershey Lodge
& Convention Center
Important change this year: Delegate Assembly (replaces the
Legislative Policy Council) will be Tuesday Oct. 15 from 1 – 4:30 p.m.
PASA-PSBA School Leadership Conference is the largest gathering of elected
officials in Pennsylvania
and offers an impressive collection of professional development opportunities
for school board members and other education leaders.
The Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel, State College, PA
conference is PAESSP’s premier professional development event for principals,
assistant principals and other educational leaders. Attending will enable you
to connect with fellow educators while learning from speakers and presenters
who are respected experts in educational leadership.
Keynote Speakers: Charlotte Danielson, Dr. Todd Whitaker, Will Richardson &
David Andrews, Esq. (Legal Update).
With more than 350 graduates in its first
fourteen years, this Program is a premier professional development opportunity
for educators, state and local policymakers, advocates, and community
leaders. State Board of Accountancy (SBA) credits are available to
certified public accountants.
Past participants include state policymakers,
district superintendents and principals, school business officers, school board
members, education deans/chairs, statewide association leaders, parent leaders,
education advocates, and other education and community leaders. Fellows
are typically sponsored by their employer or another organization.
The Fellowship Program begins with a two-day
retreat on September 12-13, 2013 and continues to graduation
in June 2014.
America 2013 National Summit July 18-19, 2013 Washington, DC
Brookings Institution to present findings of
their “Confronting Suburban Poverty” report
Building One America’s Second National Summit
for Inclusive Suburbs and Sustainable Regions will involve local leaders and
federal policy makers to seek bipartisan solutions to the unique but common
challenges around housing, schools and infrastructure facing America’s metropolitan regions and
its diverse middle-class suburbs. Participants will include local elected and
grassroots leaders from America’s
diverse middle class suburban towns and school districts, scholars and policy
experts, members of the Obama Administration and Congress. The summit
will identify comprehensive solutions and build bipartisan support for
meaningful action to stabilize and support inclusive middle-class communities
and promote sustainable, economically competitive regions.
U.S. Department of Education Acting Deputy
Secretary Confirmed for Building One AmericaSummit.
James H. Shelton III
is confirmed to participate in a White House panel at the Building One America
Summit, to be held July 18-19 at GeorgetownLawSchool
in WashingtonD.C. The summit will bring together
mayors, local elected leaders, municipal, state, county and school officials
with experts and federal policymakers from the White House and Congress to seek
bipartisan solutions to the unique but common challenges around housing,
schools, and infrastructure facing America's metropolitan regions, with a
particular focus on diverse middle-class suburbs.