Thursday, August 20, 2015

PA Ed Policy Roundup Aug 20: Budget Update: Wolf, GOP talk $400M for schools tied to pension reform; Chester Upland’s day in court Monday


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Keystone State Education Coalition
PA Ed Policy Roundup for August 20, 2015:
Budget Update: Wolf, GOP talk $400M for schools tied to pension reform; Chester Upland’s day in court Monday



Interested in letting our elected leadership know your thoughts on education funding, a severance tax, property taxes and the budget?
Governor Tom Wolf, (717) 787-2500
Speaker of the House Rep. Mike Turzai, (717) 772-9943
House Majority Leader Rep. Dave Reed, (717) 705-7173
Senate President Pro Tempore Sen. Joe Scarnati, (717) 787-7084
Senate Majority Leader Sen. Jake Corman, (717) 787-1377



"The main event in this scrap will be Wolf’s push to drastically reduce the crushing financial burden of charter schools on Chester Upland – and, in effect, all Pennsylvania schools facing a similar dilemma."
Editorial: A last chance for Chester Upland?
Delco Times Editorial POSTED: 08/19/15, 10:22 PM EDT | UPDATED: 2 HRS AGO
This might be the Chester Upland School District’s last chance.  Literally.
Gov. Tom Wolf on Monday rolled out the latest in what residents of Chester Upland have seen too many times before – a plan to put the perpetually financially ailing district on sound financial footing, in the process giving their children the same opportunity as any other student in the Commonwealth.  But Wolf also made clear his belief that without these corrective actions, the district might not be able to open its doors in September. Or if it did manage to open the schools, its financial morass would put their ability to stay open in sincere jeopardy.  It will not be easy. It never is in Chester Upland, which has been under some form of state control since 1990 and as usual is awash in red ink, staring down the barrel of $23 million in red ink.  Wolf, along with Budget Secretary Randy Albright and Secretary of Education Pedro Rivera, filed an amended financial recovery plan in Delaware County Court that calls for a forensic audit of district finances and appointment of a financial turnaround specialist.  But that’s the undercard in this heavyweight bout. The main event in this scrap will be Wolf’s push to drastically reduce the crushing financial burden of charter schools on Chester Upland – and, in effect, all Pennsylvania schools facing a similar dilemma.  Right now charter school payments in Chester Upland account for 46 percent of all district expenditures, almost half.  Wolf is banking on the recommendation of a bipartisan education funding commission set up by the Legislature when it comes to charter school reimbursement.

Republicans offer Gov. Wolf more school aid, insist on pension reform
Lancaster Online By MARC LEVY Associated Press August 19, 2015
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Top Republican lawmakers said Wednesday they will meet a key demand of Gov. Tom Wolf's to boost public school aid, even if it requires a tax increase, but they continued insisting on an end to the traditional benefit in Pennsylvania's two big public employee pension systems.  Leaders of the Pennsylvania Legislature's Republican majorities made the offer during a brief meeting with the Democratic governor in the Capitol. It came amid a 7-week-old budget stalemate that has started to shut down crucial safety-net services around Pennsylvania as Wolf and Republicans trade barbs in public.
The move by Republicans meant they were summarily rejecting Wolf's week-old counterproposal that would have kept most of the traditional pension benefit intact for hundreds of thousands of future public employees. But it also upped Republicans' commitment by $300 million to the state's primary funding account for public schools, meeting the $400 million increase Wolf has sought for a total of $6.1 billion.  "I need them to move into my camp on education and so they've done I think a pretty good job there," Wolf told reporters as he left the meeting. "But there are conditions and that's the things we have to talk about."  Wednesday's exchange, however, does not resolve a host of other demands brought to the negotiating table by both sides. No new meetings were immediately scheduled.  The GOP's offer would require Wolf to agree to a top Republican priority of shifting Pennsylvania's two big public pension systems to a 401(k)-style plan for state government and public school employees who are hired in the future. Wolf has balked at that, as have Democratic lawmakers, and it is staunchly opposed by public employee labor unions.

Republicans offer governor’s desired education funding for modified pension reform plan
The PLS Reporter Author: Jason Gottesman/Wednesday, August 19, 2015
Wednesday, Republican legislative leaders offered Gov. Tom Wolf and Democratic legislative leaders their desired education funding level in exchange for a revised defined contribution pension reform plan.  If the offer is accepted by Gov. Wolf and Democrats, it would mark the largest step forward in Pennsylvania’s now seven week-long budget stalemate.  According to top Republican leaders from the Senate and the House who spoke following Wednesday’s negotiating session, Republicans would find a way to fund an additional $300 million in education funding above the $100 million in new investment in the budget passed on June 30 if the governor would agree to a pension reform bill that looks largely like the defined contribution plan in Senate Bill 1, but with some modifications.  Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman (R-Centre) laid out some of the more major modifications to the pension reform plan, including a 16 percent employer contribution, removing legal issues brought up by Gov. Wolf in his veto message, as well as including a one percent employer contribution to the cash balance side of the plan.

Pa. state budget talks intensify with new Republican offer on pensions, school funding
By Charles Thompson | cthompson@pennlive.com Email the author | Follow on Twitter on August 19, 2015 at 6:57 PM, updated August 19, 2015 at 10:11 PM
It felt Wednesday like the protracted Pennsylvania state budget talks finally got serious.
And that's a different – and slightly nervous - place to be.  The seriousness came in the form of a new proposal from the majority Republican legislative leadership teams that would give Gov. Tom Wolf key public education funding he seeks in exchange for a new round of reforms to the state's major public employee pension plans.

Wolf, Republicans report progress on pension, education funding in budget stalemate
By Kate Giammarise & Karen Langley/ Post-Gazette Harrisburg Bureau August 19, 2015 11:57 PM
HARRISBURG — For the first time in weeks, the potential for a deal on the long-overdue state budget seemed closer after Republican legislative leaders offered a combination of pension changes and increased K-12 education funding, but legislative Democrats remain skeptical.  An offer by Republican legislative leaders that combines the pension overhaul they are seeking with some of the increased education spending Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf is seeking could potentially resolve major disagreements over the state budget.  “If the governor accepts it, it’s huge,” Senate President Pro Tem Joe Scarnati said. “It’s a home run in the sense of what the governor has wanted to deliver, and for what the Legislature has wanted to deliver on pensions. The significance of this can’t be stated enough.”  “We’re going to get back together as quickly as possible but I think we’re making some progress,” Mr. Wolf told reporters.

Wolf, GOP leaders talk schools, pension reform
ANGELA COULOUMBIS, INQUIRER HARRISBURG BUREAU LAST UPDATED: Wednesday, August 19, 2015, 2:51 PMPOSTED: Wednesday, August 19, 2015, 12:35 PM
HARRISBURG - Raising hopes for a budget deal, Republicans legislative leaders emerged from negotiations Wednesday saying they will give Gov. Wolf a portion of the money he wants for public schools - as long as he accepts their plan for pension reform.  Details were scant, but Republicans who control both legislative chambers said they will agree to spend an additional $400 million for classroom spending in kindergarten-through-12th grades if the governor agrees to their counter proposal for reining in the ballooning cost of public employee pensions.  Neither side said how they would raise the additional $400 million, although Republicans made it clear they still want Wolf to agree to privatize the sale of wine and hard liquor in Pennsylvania as a way to raise new state revenue.

Wolf weighs GOP offer that includes $400 million for schools
Penn Live By Jan Murphy | jmurphy@pennlive.com Email the author | Follow on Twitter on August 19, 2015 at 12:19 PM, updated August 19, 2015 at 3:59 PM
House and Senate Republicans put an offer on the table at Wednesday's state budget negotiating session to increase funding for schools in exchange for pension reform proposal that looks something like the one the Legislature passed and Gov. Tom Wolf vetoed.  Now they are awaiting a response from Gov. Tom Wolf and Democratic legislative leaders.  The offer included increasing spending on basic education, which is the bread and butter of state funding for school districts, by $400 million, which is what Wolf requested in his budget proposal. In exchange, they are asking the governor to go along with a modified pension reform plan that includes a defined contribution plan for future employees.  "We're not looking for a counter" offer," Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman, R-Centre County said following the brief session. "He can accept it and we can move forward with the rest of the budget. If he doesn't accept it, ... then we're back to Square One."  House Majority Leader Dave Reed, R-Indiana, indicated that if the governor rejects this offer, the Legislature's focus will move toward a budget veto override or stopgap budget.

The GOP offer - a deal in sight, or a new chance for a #PaBudget breakdown?: Analysis
Penn Live By John L. Micek | jmicek@pennlive.com Email the author | Follow on Twitter on August 19, 2015 at 1:31 PM, updated August 19, 2015 at 2:41 PM
Okay - here we go.
They didn't call it a "last, best offer," but House and Senate Republicans gave Gov. Tom Wolf the functional equivalent when they emerged from a brief negotiating session on Wednesday morning.  The concessions the Republicans offered on the pension plan that Democrat Wolf vetoed back in June include some increased employer contributions as well as the transition to a 401(k)-style retirement account for new state employees.   The proposal nabs about $12 billion in savings for pensions, Republicans said.  In return for giving the GOP a near-as-darnit version of their pension bill, the GOP said it was prepared to offer Wolf the full $400 million increase in the basic education subsidy that he wanted.  The question of how to get there is still unaddressed - though House Majority Leader Dave Reed, R-Indiana, said he knew an easy way to find $200 million. That would be privatizing the state liquor stores, natch.  Republicans said they could do the deal without tax increases - leaving unaddressed the question of Wolf's long-sought severance tax on shale drillers. But revenue questions could be addressed in negotiations over the fine print.

State’s largest teachers’ union: GOP modified pension plan offer is “insulting to working people”
The PLS Reporter Author: Jason Gottesman/Wednesday, August 19, 2015
Shortly after legislative Republicans announced they offered Gov. Tom Wolf $400 million in education funding in exchange for his agreement on a revised defined contribution pension reform plan, the Pennsylvania State Education Association—Pennsylvania’s largest teachers’ union—panned the latest pension reform plan offer.  “We don’t have many details on the Republicans’ most recent proposal, but we can say this about it: if it includes what looks like a 60 percent cut in retirement benefits, it is a direct assault on the retirement security of working Pennsylvanians. It’s insulting to working people," said PSEA president Mike Crossey in a statement. “It's just sad that a flawed and possibly unconstitutional pension proposal is holding up funding for public school students."

DN Editorial: Pa. lawmakers horsing around with schools with this budget crisis
Philly Daily News Editorial POSTED: Wednesday, August 19, 2015, 12:17 AM
AS THE CLOCK ticks down to September with a state budget crisis showing no signs of resolution, we can imagine the panic taking hold in school districts around the state - and Philadelphia's is no exception. Of course, late-August panic is nothing new to the School District of Philadelphia. For years, the gap between unresolved budgets and opening day of school has created an atmosphere of unrelenting crisis that distracts from the priority of how to best educate our children.  This year's crisis is a battle between Gov. Wolf and a Republican-dominated state Legislature, who remain far apart on big issues such as pension reform, education funding and shale tax. A few weeks ago, we urged patience for the budget process, since these battles represent a shift from the status quo. But time is now wasting.

Wolf: Reimburse schools, nonprofits for loans due to budget impasse
Lancaster Online by TIM STUHLDREHER | Staff Writer August 20, 2015
Gov. Tom Wolf said Wednesday that the state budget should include reimbursement for school districts and small nonprofit organizations for interest on loans taken out to keep going during Pennsylvania's budget impasse.  “I understand the situation that school districts and human services agencies are experiencing," Wolf said.  The proposal would limit reimbursement for nonprofits to independent organizations that employ 100 or fewer people. Organizations must receive more than half their revenue from state funding, either directly from Harrisburg or indirectly via a county program.

"Chester Upland spends more than $40,000 per special education student attending a charter school, and the plan would cut that figure to about $16,000.  Another element of the plan is to cap the reimbursement to cyber charter schools at just under $6,000 per student, in an attempt to bring the payments more in line with what the charters and cyber charters actually spend on these students"
Chester Upland’s day in court set for Monday
By Vince Sullivan, Delaware County Daily Times POSTED: 08/19/15, 10:31 PM EDT
CHESTER >> Common Pleas Court Judge Chad F. Kenney has scheduled a Monday afternoon hearing on the Chester Upland School District’s plan to emerge from financial distress. Kenney ordered the hearing a day after the district receiver filed an amended recovery plan first introduced by Gov. Tom Wolf on Monday.  The plan calls for reduced reimbursement to charter schools for special education students, as well a detailed forensic audit for all school district spending over the last five years. The district currently has a structural deficit of more than $20 million, which will double if no action is taken, according to the plan. Chester Upland spends more than $40,000 per special education student attending a charter school, and the plan would cut that figure to about $16,000.  Another element of the plan is to cap the reimbursement to cyber charter schools at just under $6,000 per student, in an attempt to bring the payments more in line with what the charters and cyber charters actually spend on these students, according to the recovery plan.  Wolf on Monday said that the district’s financial crisis, which has been ongoing for more than a decade, would prevent schools from opening their doors next month. If they do open, he said, it wouldn’t be very long before the district ran out of money.
The reimbursement changes would eliminate the structural deficit, according to state Budget Secretary Randy Albright, who said that the special education alteration would save Chester Upland about $20 million, and the cyber charter change would save another $4 million.

Wolf: Take action to avert collapse of Chester-Upland district
Inquirer Opinion by Governor By Tom Wolf POSTED: Wednesday, August 19, 2015, 1:08 AM
All of Pennsylvania's children deserve a high-quality education, and as I have said, we must invest in our education system to make it stronger. But we cannot just throw money at any problem and hope for a good outcome.  Unfortunately, for 25 years, the Chester Upland School District has completely and utterly mismanaged its finances and failed its students, and over the last several years, the commonwealth's solution - through Republican and Democratic governors - has been to throw money at the problem year after year rather than find a sustainable solution. As a result, the district has been destroyed and the schoolchildren suffer the most.

Tom Wolf vs. the charters
Delco Times HERON'S NEST Blog by Editor Phil Heron Wednesday, August 19, 2015
They should sell tickets to this one.  Forget the MMA.
This could wind up being Pennsylvania's own version of a steel-cage match.
On the line is the future of the Chester Upland School District.
The battle pits Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf vs. one of the state's biggest contributors to Republican campaign coffers.  That would be Vahan Gureghian, who manages Chester Community Charter School, the largest in the state and one that until recently had lured more than half the students in the Chester Upland School District.  Yesterday Wolf, along with Education Secretary Pedro Rivera, rolled out the latest plan to salvage the perennially broke Chester Upland School District.
And the key to the plan is a push in Delaware County Court to reduce reimbursements to charter schools.

2011 version of PA Gov's "Schools That Teach" tour
Blogger 's note: To my knowledge, Governor Corbett did not visit one traditional public school that year.....

"Maybe it’s no surprise but those school districts that have the most problems, the greatest need, get the most money from the state government, so the failure of the governor and the Republican legislature to reach a compromise means that our most vulnerable children are hurt first.  Dr. Hippert, a former superintendent, says the less affluent districts cannot go into mid-Fall without state funding."
State Budget Impasse Threatens Local School Districts
KDKA by Jon Delano August 17, 2015 5:59 PM
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Pennsylvania’s 500 school districts get millions of dollars in state funding to operate.  But so far in this fiscal year — they haven’t gotten a penny.  And that could have a big impact once schools start up later this month.  So far it’s been a relatively painless budget impasse between a Republican legislature and a Democratic governor, but school districts — regardless of party — are about to feel the hit.  “I know that some school districts that have taken out loans so that they can cover their first payroll,” Nina Esposito-Visgitis, president of the Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers told KDKA political editor Jon Delano on Monday.  Since July 1st, school districts have not received any 2015-2016 fiscal year state education funding because of the deadlock in Harrisburg.  “Budgets are very tight. Every penny counts, so that has been a challenge. And now as we begin the school year, it becomes even more of a challenge when districts will not receive their subsidy funds,” says Dr. Linda Hippert, head of the Allegheny Intermediate Unit.

Lower PSSA scores spur some Pa. school districts to call for less testing
WHYY Newsworks BY LAURA BENSHOFF AUGUST 19, 2015
Last month, the Pennsylvania Department of Education shared preliminary test data for its new, common core aligned tests - and the results weren't pretty.  As a result, some area school districts are lobbying Harrisburg to dial back the number and consequences of standardized tests, sooner rather than later.  Pottsgrove School Board Director Rick Rabinowitz said the new scores make it hard to gauge school progress.  "The trend was up for most of our schools. And we'd been working very hard to continue to improve," said Rabinowitz. "It's like pulling the rug out from under us."  In response, Pottsgrove passed a resolution asking legislators to "minimize the amount of mandated testing," and urging its own faculty and administrators to stay focused on "quality teaching of quality content, and to minimize time spent on preparation for standardized testing."

CDC report on school start times and teen sleep is a wake-up call we should heed
Lancaster Online by The LNP Editorial Board August 19, 2015
THE ISSUE: The back-to-school season begins in earnest here in Lancaster County as Lancaster Mennonite School opens today. Most county schools, public and private, will open next week or the one that follows.  For high school kids, back to school may mean many things: a re-immersion in learning, a schedule crowded with homework and extracurriculars, a disruption to unfettered texting, a return to Friday night football and that Sunday night feeling of dread.  For most, it also means this: a chronic lack of sleep.  The high school schedule is acutely unsuited to a teen’s biological sleep rhythms.  Everyone — physicians, school administrators, teachers, parents, high school students themselves — know this.  And yet we persist in starting school at the middle and high school levels well before 8 a.m.

Spring-Ford Area School Board debates volunteer policy changes
West Chester Daily Local By Eric Devlin, edevlin@21st-centurymedia.com@Eric_Devlin on Twitter POSTED: 08/19/15, 6:48 PM EDT
Royersford >> The Spring-Ford Area School Board joined the state-wide debate regarding new volunteer background check requirements.  During his report to the board Monday, Assistant Superintendent Allyn Roche noted that there has been a proposed change to the district’s policy. It now allows would-be volunteers to apply for background checks every five years, instead of every three years. The real issue though centers around how many background checks volunteers should be required to get. When it’s compared to the new more lenient state volunteer policy, some have begun to question whether the district’s policy is asking too much of residents looking to help, including board Vice President Tom DiBello.

Saucon Valley teachers, board digging into arbitrator's plan
By Sara K. Satullo | For lehighvalleylive.com Email the author | Follow on Twitter on August 19, 2015 at 5:35 PM, updated August 19, 2015 at 7:49 PM
Saucon Valley School District officials and teachers are digging into a neutral arbitrator's report to determine what it means for them.  Labor attorney Timothy Brown issued his 15-page report of recommendations Wednesday. Each side now has 10 days to accept or reject the report.  The recommendations call for a six-year contract that allows for retroactive pay -- something the school board wanted off the table -- and isn't far off what the union had sought for the final three years of the contract.  Brown's report is not binding but the two sides have exhausted most avenues to end a labor dispute. Fact-finding has failed as did a tentative agreement.

The Main Line’s Six New Superintendents Talk Education
Main Line Parent by Jenny Williams Contributing Writer July 2015
This fall, as children along the Main Line return to classes, many will do so at schools under new leadership. On July 1, new superintendents took over at Great Valley, Haverford, Lower Merion, Marple Newtown, Tredyffrin/Easttown, and Upper Merion Area school districts. These leaders will set the direction, tone, and agenda for the districts they serve. All six come from districts in Pennsylvania or New Jersey. Two are former science teachers, two social studies, one English, and one industrial arts. In order to learn more about them and where they plan to lead these districts, MLP interviewed each one. Here is some of what we learned.

"Education has been a divisive issue for Republicans, and the differences were on full display as the presidential contenders vied to prove how small a role they would permit the federal government to play in public schools.  The candidates performed a balancing act as they tried to embrace high standards for schoolchildren while shying away from the Common Core, education guidelines that have become intensely controversial among conservatives, parents and teachers."
G.O.P. Hopefuls Display Differences on Education
New York Times By MOTOKO RICH AUG. 19, 2015
In saying on Wednesday that he supported annual standardized tests for public school students, Jeb Bush invoked his brother.  “When we neglect that, the kids who are left behind are kids in poverty, African-American kids, Hispanic kids, and then we blame it on the social circumstances of their life,” Mr. Bush, a former governor of Florida, said at an unusual panel discussion on education in Londonderry, N.H., which featured six Republican candidates.  He also quoted one of George W. Bush’s signature phrases. “And that is what a former president called the ‘soft bigotry of low expectations,’ and we should reject that out of hand,” he said.
Staking out a more conservative stance, Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin said he did not want the federal government overseeing public schools.

Renowned researcher: ‘Why I am no longer comfortable’ in the field of educational measurement
Washington Post Answer Sheet Blog By Valerie Strauss August 20 at 4:00 AM  
Gene V. Glass is a renowned statistician and researcher who has worked for decades in educational psychology and the social sciences. He created the term “meta-analysis” — a statistical process for combining the findings from individual studies in a search for patterns and other data — and described its use in a 1976 speech when he was president of the American Educational Research Association. He has won numerous awards during his career. He is now a Regents’ Professor Emeritus at Arizona State University, a senior researcher at the National Education Policy Center at the University of Colorado Boulder, and an elected member of the National Academy of Education.  Considering that Glass has spent a career in psychometrics, it becomes news when he decides that he is “no longer comfortable being associated with the discipline of educational measurement.” In this post, which appeared on his blog, Education in Two Worlds, he explains why he has reached this point, a decision that explains the state of “accountability” in public education today. I am republishing it with permission.


PCCY: Get on the Bus to Harrisburg August 25th
As parents, teachers and advocates, you know first hand how difficult it is to get the resources needed to support our students. Harrisburg continues to be mired in political gridlock and has failed to pass a budget for Pennsylvania’s 500 school districts. 
Teachers, parents and students have no idea what they will be walking into come September for the start of school. We say enough is enough.
We are contacting you because on August 25th the PA House is scheduled to return to the Capitol—and we want to be there to meet them. Could you give us a few hours of your day and help make it clear that we demand a budget? 
  • Join your neighbors and other concerned citizens who believe that investing in our kids is non-negotiable
  • We’ll provide: FREE Transportation to and from the Capitol and lunch; a brief training on the bus, materials, and day of schedule
  • Scheduled visits with elected officials  
Kids are off from school so bring them with you – after all, it concerns their future!
Details:
  • Bus will depart from in front of the United Way Building at 7:45am at 1709 Benjamin Franklin Parkway.
  • We will return to Philly by approximately 4:30pm.  (Discounted parking ($8) available at the Sheraton Hotel at 17th & Race)
  • If you plan to drive yourself, we will meet at the Capitol between 10am and 10:30am.

The John Stoops Lecture Series: Dr. Pasi Sahlberg "Education Around the World: Past, Present & Future" Lehigh University October 8, 2015 6:00 p.m.
Baker Hall | Zoellner Arts Center | 420 E. Packer Avenue | Bethlehem, PA 18015
Free and open to the public!
Ticketing is general admission - no preseating will be assigned. Arrive early for the best seats.
Please plan to stay post-lecture for an open reception where you will have an opportunity to meet with students from all of our programs to learn about the latest innovations in education and human services.

Register now for the 2015 PASCD 65th Annual Conference, Leading and Achieving in an Interconnected World, to be held November 15-17, 2015 at Pittsburgh Monroeville Convention Center.
The Conference will Feature Keynote Speakers: Meenoo Rami – Teacher and Author “Thrive: 5 Ways to (Re)Invigorate Your Teaching,”  Mr. Pedro Rivera, Pennsylvania Secretary of Education, Heidi Hayes-Jacobs – Founder and President of Curriculum Design, Inc. and David Griffith – ASCD Senior Director of Public Policy.  This annual conference features small group sessions focused on: Curriculum and Supervision, Personalized and Individualized Learning, Innovation, and Blended and Online Learning. The PASCD Conference is a great opportunity to stay connected to the latest approaches for innovative change in your school or district.  Join us forPASCD 2015!  Online registration is available by visiting www.pascd.org <http://www.pascd.org/>

Nominations for PSBA's Allwein Advocacy Award now open
PSBA July 7, 2015
The Timothy M. Allwein Advocacy Award was established in 2011 by the Pennsylvania School Boards Association and may be presented annually to the individual school director or entire school board to recognize outstanding leadership in legislative advocacy efforts on behalf of public education and students that are consistent with the positions in PSBA’s Legislative Platform.  The 2015 Allwein Award nomination process will close on Aug. 28, 2015. The 2015 Allwein Award Nomination Form is available online. More details on the award and nominations process can be found online

Slate of candidates for PSBA offices now available online
PSBA website July 31, 2015
The slate of candidates for 2016 PSBA officer and at-large representatives is now available online, including bios, photos and videos. According to recent PSBA Bylaws changes, each member school entity casts one vote per office. Voting will again take place online through a secure, third-party website -- Simply Voting. Voting will openAug. 17 and closes Sept. 28. One person from the school entity (usually the board secretary) is authorized to register the vote on behalf of the member school entity and each board will need to put on its agenda discussion and voting at one of its meetings in August or September. Each person authorized to register the school entity's votes has received an email on July 16 to verify the email address and confirm they are the person to register the vote on behalf of their school entity. 

Register Now for PASA-PSBA School Leadership Conference Oct. 14-16, 2015 Hershey Lodge & Convention Center
Save the date for the professional development event of the year. Be inspired at more than four exciting venues and invest in professional development for top administrators and school board members. Online registration is live at:

Register Now – PAESSP State Conference – Oct. 18-20 – State College, PA
Registration is now open for PAESSP's State Conference to be held October 18-20 at The Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel in State College, PA! This year's theme is @EVERYLEADER and features three nationally-known keynote speakers (Dr. James Stronge, Justin Baeder and Dr. Mike Schmoker), professional breakout sessions, a legal update, exhibits, Tech Learning Labs and many opportunities to network with your colleagues (Monday evening event with Jay Paterno).  Once again, in conjunction with its conference, PAESSP will offer two 30-hour Act 45 PIL-approved programs, Linking Student Learning to Teacher Supervision and Evaluation (pre-conference offering on 10/17/15); and Improving Student Learning Through Research-Based Practices: The Power of an Effective Principal (held during the conference, 10/18/15 -10/20/15). Register for either or both PIL programs when you register for the Full Conference!
REGISTER TODAY for the Conference and Act 45 PIL program/s at:

Apply now for EPLC’s 2015-2016 PA Education Policy Fellowship Program
Applications are available now for the 2015-2016 Education Policy Fellowship Program (EPFP).  The Education Policy Fellowship Program is sponsored in Pennsylvania by The Education Policy and Leadership Center (EPLC).  With more than 400 graduates in its first sixteen 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, charter school leaders, 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 17-18, 2015 and continues to graduation in June 2016.
Click here to read about the Education Policy Fellowship Program.

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