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 October 11, 2013: Coalition to Corbett: Fund schools, develop formula
Daily postings from the Keystone State Education
Coalition now reach more than 3000 Pennsylvania education policymakers – school
directors, administrators, legislators, legislative and congressional staffers,
Governor's staff, 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
Pennsylvania Education Policy Roundup for October 11, 2013:
to Corbett: Fund schools, develop formula
Standardized test scores have long
been strongly correlated with students’
household income. In 1979, 300 of Pennsylvania’s school districts were above
the average for personal income and 201 were below. In 2011, 122 school districts were above the
average with 378 school districts below.
Coalition to Corbett:
Fund schools, develop formula
MARTHA WOODALL, INQUIRER
STAFF WRITER POSTED: Friday, October 11, 2013,
of civil- and human-rights groups has urged Gov. Corbett to release state funds
cash-strapped schools and develop a new funding formula for education.
crisis quickly has become an embarrassment to the entire nation," leaders
from 10 local, state, and national organizations wrote in a letter to the
governor scheduled to be released Friday.
the last several years, Philadelphia
has become a cautionary tale for the rest of the country, illustrating the harm
that occurs when political posturing and irresponsible budget decisions trump
the educational needs of students, families, and communities," said the
letter, sent to Corbett Tuesday. Leaders
who signed the document said the district's $300 million deficit was
"largely created" by Corbett and the legislature's decision to slash
$1 billion in statewide aid for schools in 2011 and abandon a statewide formula
that had been designed to provide resources to the districts and schools with
the neediest students.
Philly Daily News Attytood Blog by Will Bunch THURSDAY, OCTOBER 10, 2013,
disturbing story that's getting a fair amount of attention today --
and deservedly so. As first reported by Daniel Denvir of the City Paper, a
12-year-old with severe asthma fell ill at one of the Philadelphia schools that lost a full-time
nurse this fall because of the current funding crisis. The 6th-grader was
simply sent home -- and died from complications after she was rushed to an
ROBERT MORAN, INQUIRER
STAFF WRITER Thursday, October 10, 2013,
Two school libraries, shuttered last month due to budget cuts, will reopen
Tuesday after a donation from an anonymous donor. As The Inquirer reported last month, Central
High and Masterman, two of the city's most prestigious schools, closed their
libraries because the district did not fund librarians.
Tribune-Review By Megan
Harris Thursday, Oct. 10, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
State Education officials on Wednesday posted on the web rankings of 3,000 Pennsylvania schools,
but scores gauging academic achievement and other performance measures for 573
schools were missing. The release is
part of the implementation of School Performance Profiles, which are designed
to compare schools by enrollment, graduation rates, test scores and other
factors. The system assigns a number grade from 1 to 100; with extra credit,
the score may be as high as 107. Acting
Education Secretary Carolyn Dumaresq said previously that she chose not to
further delay posting incomplete data, in part, to meet federal deadlines for
Title 1 funding to schools with high populations of low-income children.
LebanonCounty superintendents had a mixed
reaction to the new school-evaluation system unveiled recently by the state
Department of Education.
Performance Profiles, released by the PDE on Oct. 4, are designed to show the
academic performance of the state's 3,200 traditional, charter, cyber and
replace the previous school-grading system known as Adequate Yearly Progress,
or AYP, which rated only the state's traditional public schools based solely on
standardized-test results. The state is no longer required to use AYP to
evaluate schools because it received a waiver from the federal No Child Left
Behind law earlier this year.
Allentown School District custodians
and maintenance workers have agreed to a wage freeze for the next three
years. In exchange, their new contract
expressly prohibits the district from outsourcing those employees, except those
who leave via attrition.
Robbing Peter to pay
Paul: 'Leveling' Philly schools in the time of budget crisis
Newsworks BY KEVIN MCCORRY
OCTOBER 9, 2013
from bad to worse. Packed classrooms.
Lack of a full-time guidance counselor. No education in arts or music. Those
were the complaints of parents at South Philadelphia's
A.S. Jenks elementary school through the first month of school.
parents received word that that the district was removing another teacher from
their school – this in addition to the teacher they lost to layoffs in June.
As a result, the K-4 school will now serve its first through fourth
grades only with classes that combine multiple grade-levels in one classroom. Every first-grader will be in a class with
second-graders. Some third-graders will be combined with fourth-graders; others
will be with second-graders. Only the school's kindergarten students will not
Board president steps down at scandal-ridden PA Cyber
Lord / Pittsburgh
The man who
guided the PennsylvaniaCyberCharterSchool's board through a
year of probes and staff turmoil resigned late Thursday, and the board accepted
the resignation against the backdrop of an apparent state review of educational
benefits provided to his daughter.
who had been on the board for at least five years and served as its president
during a federal investigation of its founder and vendors, was not at the
special board meeting at which his resignation was accepted. After the meeting,
the online school's attorney provided a two-line email, dated Thursday
afternoon, from Mr. Jaskiewicz tendering his resignation. It provided no
new details on legal costs
Lord / Pittsburgh
Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School today released documents further chronicling
nearly half a million dollars in spending on legal bills spurred by the federal
grand jury probe of its founder and various subcontractors. The Post-Gazette reported Monday that the
online public school, based in the BeaverCounty town of Midland, hired attorneys to protect its
interests, those of founder Nick Trombetta who resigned from his post of CEO in
June 2012, and those of seven employees.
Lisbon, Ohio Morning Journal News October 10, 2013
PITTSBURGH - The sister of indicted PennsylvaniaCyberCharterSchool
founder Nick Trombetta, pleaded guilty Wednesday to filing a false income tax
return at a hearing in U.S. District Court, according to the Pittsburgh
Post-Gazette. When Elaine Trombetta
Neill, 56, of Aliquippa, was asked by U.S. District Judge Joy Flowers Conti,
whether she falsified her 2010 tax return, including in it income that she did
not earn and expenses she did not incur, she said, "Yes, your honor,"
the Post-Gazette reported.
Assistant U.S. attorney
James Wilson outlined the evidence in a lengthy summary aimed squarely at
PPG Editorial: Defense spending: A cyber school
should not cover lawbreakers
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Editorial October 11, 2013
Due to an
ongoing investigation and criminal charges filed against its founder, the PennsylvaniaCyberCharterSchool spent nearly half
a million dollars on legal fees in the past year. That's bad news for the
taxpayers, all across Pennsylvania,
who fund the public school.
is the realization that any repayment to the school may not come for a long
time, if ever.
Resurrected for the New Gilded Age
Week Living in Dialogue Blog By Anthony Cody on October
Over at the
Bridging Differences blog, a fascinating dialogue is occurring, where Michael
Petrilli has been laying out the philosophical arguments for a two tier
educational system. I appreciate Mr. Petrilli, because while some reformers
hide their intentions behind mushy rhetoric, he has laid out his argument
plainly, where it can be debated.
PA Budget and Policy Center Fall Webinar Series to
Tackle Property Taxes, Marcellus Shale, Health Care, Education
Posted by PA Budget and PolicyCenter on October 9, 2013
brown bag lunch and join the Pennsylvania Budget and PolicyCenter
for a great series of noontime
webinars this fall — starting Friday, October 18 from to 1 p.m. Learn more about
the problems with legislative proposals to fully eliminate property taxes and
proven strategies to provide property tax relief where it is needed. Other
topics include the countdown to new health care options in 2014, the latest on
jobs in the Marcellus Shale, and what we can do to restore needed education
funding in Pennsylvania.
Each webinar is designed to provide you with the information you need to shape
the debate in the State Capitol.
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).
Conference ~ A Whole Child Education Powered by Blendedschools Network
November 3-4, 2013 | Hershey Lodge & Convention Center
you to join us for the Annual Conference, held at an earlier date this year, on
Sunday, November 3rd, through Monday, November 4th, 2013
at the Hershey Lodge and Convention Center. The Pre-Conference begins on
Saturday with PILAcademies and Common Core
sessions. On Sunday and Monday, our features include
keynote presentations by Chris Lehmann and ASCD Author Dr. Connie Moss, as well
as numerous breakout sessions on PA’s most timely topics.
Fourth Annual Fundraiser
and Awards Ceremony THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 21, 2013
IBEW Local 380 3900 Ridge Pike Collegeville, PA
Building One Pennsylvania is an emerging
statewide non-partisan organization of leaders from diverse sectors -
municipal, school, faith, business, labor and civic - who are joining together
to stabilize and revitalize their communities, revitalize local economies and
promote regional opportunity and sustainability. BuildingOnePa.org
Join the NationalSchoolBoardsActionCenterFriends of Public Education
in a voluntary network to urge your U.S.
Representatives and Senators to support federal legislation on Capitol Hill
that is critical to providing high quality education to America’s schoolchildren
Proposed Amendments to
PSBA Bylaws available online
PSBA website 9/17/2013
A special issue of the School Leader News with the
notice of proposed PSBA Bylaws amendments has been mailed to all school
directors and board secretaries.
This issue also is available online in the Members Only section by clicking here. Voting on PSBA Bylaws changes will take
place at the new Delegate Assembly on Oct. 15, 2013, at the Hershey Lodge &
Convention Center from 1-4 p.m. All member school entities should have
appointed their voting delegates and submitted names to PSBA. Details on
selecting an entity's voting delegate can be found in previous issues of
the School Leader News.