Sunday, February 7, 2016

PA Ed Policy Roundup February 7, 2016: Pennsylvania #pabudget impasse undermining local schools; "holding the line" in Harrisburg paves the way for local tax increases

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Keystone State Education Coalition
PA Ed Policy Roundup February 7, 2016:
Pennsylvania #pabudget impasse undermining local schools; "holding the line" in Harrisburg paves the way for local tax increases



RSVP Today for One of EPLC’s Education Policy Forum Series on Governor Wolf’s 2016-17 State Budget Proposal
Thursday, February 11, 2016 – Harrisburg
Wednesday, February 17, 2016 - Philadelphia
Thursday, February 25, 2016 - Pittsburgh



“Another problem is that Pennsylvania has always had a very partisan legislature. No matter what party the governor is, it’s always difficult to reach an agreement,” said Cowell, who decided in 1998 not to seek reelection to the Allegheny County House district he represented for 24 years as a Democrat.  “But now the state government is also suffering from an ideological divide, even among the legislative leaders, particularly in the House, which is crippling the legislature’s ability to get things done,” he said.  “It used to be that when the governor and legislative leaders reached an agreement, it was understood that the leaders would go and get the votes to make it happen,” said Cowell."
Pennsylvania impasse undermining local schools
By Evan Brandt, The Mercury POSTED: 02/06/16, 4:47 PM EST
When Gov. Tom Wolf presents the second budget of his term to the General Assembly on Tuesday, it’s a safe bet he will do so without having a budget for the current year in place.
The state budget for 2015-16 will be 244 days late — a state record.  As a result, school districts have no clue how much money they will receive in state aid for a year now more than halfway completed. Despite that failure, state law requires that they begin planning now for the next fiscal year.   “There is definitely a lot more frustration and uncertainty,” said Hannah Barrick, director of advocacy for the Pennsylvania Association of School Business Officials.  “School budgeting in PA is not aligned well with the state budget process,” Barrick said, pointing to Act 1, the 2006 law that requires school budgeting to be done in time for a possible primary election vote.  “There’s always a lot of guesswork, a lot of looking into a crystal ball,” said Barrick. “This year, it’s just that much worse.”

"As of late last week, more than half of the school districts in Pennsylvania – 265 of the 501 – approved preliminary budgets that allow them to increase property taxes to the allowable index. Of the 265, 170 submitted spending plans that ask the Pennsylvania Department of Education for permission to raise taxes above the index, according to data from the department."
School districts pave the way for tax increases
Observer Reporter By Karen Zapf February 6, 2016
School district officials need more than mathematical expertise this year to put the pieces of their 2016-17 budgets in place.  “There’s a little bit of art to it in addition to the science,” Trinity Area School District business manager David Roussos said last week.  Many school districts across the state, including some in Washington and Greene counties, worked throughout January to prepare preliminary budgets for the 2016-17 school year minus a pivotal document that annually helps them estimate future revenue and expenditures – a state budget for the 2015-16 school year.   “This (lack of a state budget for seven months) is an unprecedented situation,” said Pennsylvania School Boards Association spokesman Steve Robinson. “It is a challenge for them.”
Given the uncertainty of state funding, many school districts approved preliminary budgets that give them flexibility going forward

Wolf to float new budget plan amid fight over current one
AP State Wire By MARC LEVY February 6, 2016
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - Gov. Tom Wolf is scheduled to release his 2016-17 budget proposal for the fiscal year that begins July 1. After an unresolved fight with the Republican-controlled Legislature, the Democrat is the first governor in modern Pennsylvania history to come to this point with substantial portions of the budget for the current fiscal year still in limbo. Wolf has made some revelations about what he will propose Tuesday, and here is a look at what is unfinished and what may be a part of his budget package.

With Pennsylvania at a Crossroads, Governor Wolf Announces Proposed Early Education Investment
Governor Wolf's website February 04, 2016
Philadelphia, PA – Governor Tom Wolf today joined Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney and Education Secretary Pedro A. Rivera to announce the proposed early education funding levels for the 2016-17 budget. Pennsylvania stands at a crossroads, and Governor Wolf is proposing a clear path for a promising future in the commonwealth. The governor’s proposal includes a $60 million increase in high-quality early childhood education. This funding increase builds upon a $60 million investment in 2015-16 to enroll about 14,000 additional children in Pennsylvania Pre-K Counts and the Head Start Supplemental Assistance Program.  “We have a choice in Pennsylvania. We must choose a path that funds our schools, eliminates our deficit, and puts Pennsylvania back on track,” said Governor Wolf. “I believe that Pennsylvania should be among the many states that provide universal pre-kindergarten for children and I will work to make this a reality.”

Wolf calls for an ‘honest budget,’ tax increase
By Kate Giammarise and Karen Langley / Post-Gazette Harrisburg Bureau February 7, 2016 12:00 AM
HARRISBURG — Eleven weary months later, Gov. Tom Wolf is about to deliver a second budget proposal that he says will narrowly focus on boosting school funding while raising taxes to pay for automatic cost increases.  “There are no other issues,” Mr. Wolf said last week during an interview with the Post-Gazette. “We need to have an honest budget, that is funded with recurring revenue, and we need to have investment in education.”  Mr. Wolf said his spending proposal for the year beginning July 1 will total about $32 billion, including automatic increases in pension payments and other areas, and that balancing the budget will require raising the sales or personal income taxes or some combination of the two. The state’s Independent Fiscal Office projects a structural deficit of approximately $1.9 billion for the upcoming fiscal year.  “In the ’15-’16 budget compromise, I agreed to a sales tax increase,” Mr. Wolf said, referring to a framework agreement that ultimately failed to become law. “I would agree to a personal income tax. So I’m indifferent. Either one.”  When he strides into the House chamber on Tuesday, Mr. Wolf will be in the unusual position of proposing a budget for next year while the budget for the current year -— already seven months done -— remains incomplete.

State Rep. Mike Turzai: Gov. Wolf’s spending plans sap too much money from your pocket
Times Leader by State Rep. Mike Turzai - Contributing columnist First Posted: 11:00 am - February 6th, 2016
Three fiscally responsible budgets for 2015-16 were placed on the governor’s desk, none requiring increases in personal income tax or sales tax.  Each budget funded public education at record levels. Further, each fully funded every core state government function including human services and corrections.  Conversely, Gov. Tom Wolf’s budget proposal in March called for $13 billion increases on the backs of Pennsylvania families and businesses in only the first two years. He demanded taking an additional 21 percent more from your pockets in personal income tax, along with 10 percent more in sales tax while calling for an expansion of its base to include daycare, senior care, financial and legal services and many others.  In attempting to do so, Wolf brought back “walking around money” (WAMs) and other discretionary spending eliminated by the Legislature in 2011-12 as enticements to support his increased spending plans. It’s little wonder why InsideGov.com concluded Wolf was the most liberal governor in the nation.
Wolf’s bottom line: Increase taxes without setting forth any accountability on spending. It’s an approach that assumes he knows how to spend your hard-earned money better than you do and that bigger government is the vehicle by which to do so.  The majority of the Legislature thinks otherwise. More of your money belongs in your pocket.

"The delivery of a state budget will be 244 days late on Tuesday when Wolf goes before the General Assembly to give the second budget address of his term. There is talk that it would make more sense to have one budget — an 18-month document that starts now and sails into the next budget year July 1 without the usual fireworks of deadline negotiations.  That plan would let Wolf and the Legislature off the hook: They would only need to reach one agreement and could enjoy their summer vacation without the uncertainty of last-minute sessions.  But the entities that remain on the hook, and increasingly stressed in the current atmosphere, are local schools."
Editorial: Pa. budget impasse turns a corner toward next year
Delco Times POSTED: 02/07/16, 5:25 AM EST | UPDATED: 2 HRS AGO
The dance betseen Gov. Tom Wolf and Pennsylvania legislators to adopt a state budget started last year as spring turned to summer.  By the dog days of August, it became an urgent plea to get a budget passed before school started in the fall.  Fall came and went, and by Christmas, the message was a clear and bitter scolding: The failure to agree on a state budget was hurting social services and threatening to close schools.  In early winter, Wolf freed up some money to keep schools open and agencies funded, but a budget agreement establishing state expenditures and revenue projections was not reached.  Now, in the winter of our discontent, having survived 2 feet of snow, local school officials are facing a new dilemma.  How do they plan a budget for 2016-17, when they’re still waiting to see what the state is providing in 2015-16?

On Pa. budget: 'Declare victory' and go home
WHYY Newsworks COMMENTARY  BY MARC STIER FEBRUARY 5, 2016 ESSAYWORKS
Marc Stier is the director of the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center.
In 1966, Senator George Aiken returned from a trip from Vietnam with the recommendation that the United States "declare victory and bring the troops home." It wasn't entirely clear that the U.S. had won the war at that point, but we also hadn't yet lost the war (as we would after another eight years of suffering and death).  It's a very different context, but I'm inclined to give the General Assembly similar advice: Finish the work on the bipartisan budget, declare victory, and go home.  Last year, an appropriations bill that implements the bipartisan budget framework, SB1073, passed the Senate by an overwhelming vote of 43-7. It was one roll call vote short of passing the House in December, having already been approved by a narrow, yet bipartisan, majority on second reading. The General Assembly should return to that bipartisan approach now and then enact the taxes we need to fund the budget.  Not everyone will be happy. But that's what happens when politicians make a deal. At the very least, the General Assembly would be spared any further ignominy for its inability to carry out one of the most basic functions of state government enacting a balanced budget.

Editorial: Lawmakers dreaming
Inquirer Editorial Updated: FEBRUARY 5, 2016 — 3:01 AM EST
Harrisburg politicians seem trapped in a dream world where Pennsylvania doesn't have a deficit and the public is so in love with them that they can take their time reaching a budget agreement.  In reality, the legislature has an abysmal 15 percent approval rating in a new Franklin and Marshall College poll, and Gov. Wolf isn't that much better at 33 percent. With a record seven-month budget impasse, it's no wonder that 67 percent of voters think the state is off the rails and that its biggest problem is its government.  The politicians' intransigence has forced schools to borrow $1 billion to pay their bills through the stalemate. The loans have cost $50 million in interest so far, says Auditor General Eugene DePasquale. "The longer you go [without a budget], the more expensive the deal is going to get," he said. Schools will have to borrow again in March, or sooner, when money runs out from the state's stopgap budget.

Bracing for the budget: Pennsylvanians wonder if we're headed for Wolf War II?
Penn Live By Charles Thompson | cthompson@pennlive.com Email the author | Follow on Twitter on February 05, 2016 at 7:00 AM, updated February 05, 2016 at 7:14 AM
A recent Franklin & Marshall College poll carried what might be alarming news for Pennsylvania's elected officials at the start of an election year.  Respondents, battered by scandal and unending budget gridlock, said by more than a 3:1 ratio that the state is headed in the wrong direction.  Thirty-eight percent, more than twice as large as any other issue's bloc, cited government and politicians as the state's most important problem.  But at the state Capitol this week, it felt more like "morning in Pennsylvania," as Gov. Tom Wolf and other top state officials talked about their state-of-readiness for the delivery of a new state budget.  Wolf is scheduled to unveil his new plan on Feb. 9, even though work on the 2015-16 budget still isn't finished.

Editorial: Republicans have played havoc with state economy
Philly Daily news Editorial Updated: FEBRUARY 5, 2016 — 3:01 AM EST
Daily News editorial: The Republican wrecking crew in control of the Legislature has stopped government in its tracks, which is fine with them, as long as there are no new taxes.
GOV. WOLF was in Philadelphia on Thursday to tout his plan to provide an additional $200 million in subsidies to basic education, plus another $60 million in state money for pre-K for all children - a goal he shares with Mayor Kenney.  Of course, we all know the problem with using these numbers. There is no guarantee the state Legislature will approve any of this new spending. In fact, the odds are against it.  Forget about next year. The Legislature failed to approve the governor's call for an extra $360 million in additional funds for basic education this year. It has also failed to pass a state budget for the current year.  Wolf will be in the odd position next Tuesday of proposing his budget for the new fiscal year that begins July 1, without a budget approved for this year.  It's popular to portray this as squabbling between a liberal governor and an increasingly conservative Republican majority.  But, it's not the same old-same old partisan comedy. Increasingly, it is becoming a tragedy - with local governments and school districts as victims. The state is operating under a stopgap budget that funds government operations for part of the year.  Just like last fall, the money will start to run out in the spring. Just like last fall, school districts and local governments will have to scramble to get money to fund education and social services. The only difference is, the governments and districts have spent whatever reserves they had and have borrowed to the limit. The well is dry.  This is all due to the Republican wrecking crew in control of the Legislature. They have stopped government in its tracks, which is fine with them, as long as there are no new taxes.

"In 2013-14, when the school had 750 students, Ed Plus received $7.2 million in taxpayer funds. As is the case for all cybers in the state, it did not meet the state's academic benchmarks. It scored a 50 on the Pennsylvania School Performance Profile; a 70 is the threshold for satisfactory performance."
Why a cyber charter had to close its doors
Inquirer by Martha Woodall, Staff Writer. Updated: FEBRUARY 7, 2016 — 7:40 AM EST
When Education Plus Academy Cyber Charter closed in December, its officials laid blame at two places: districts that couldn't pay for students because of the state budget crisis, and a bank's decision to pull the charter school's line of credit.  But documents Ed Plus filed in federal bankruptcy court show that the Main Line cyber, which got into trouble for operating more like a regular school than an online one, was crippled by much bigger financial problems.  Former staffers say that the school that focused on students with learning disabilities was in turmoil for months and that the bankruptcy stemmed from questionable management decisions.

"Most significant for the district, the arbitrator's decision would mean that the school system must honor its collective bargaining agreement and ensure one full-time counselor at every school. Several dozen schools have only part-time counselors."
Judge to Phila. schools: Hire back counselors
Inquirer by Kristen A. Graham, Staff Writer. Updated: FEBRUARY 6, 2016 — 1:07 AM EST
Dozens of Philadelphia public schools could get full-time counselors, and more than a dozen Philadelphia school counselors could get their jobs back, if a judge's order stands.  Common Pleas Court Judge Linda Carpenter on Friday denied the Philadelphia School District's request for stay of an independent arbitrator's order.  In 2015, arbitrator Ralph H. Colflesh Jr. handed the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers a significant victory, ruling that the school system was wrong to bypass seniority in recalling laid-off employees, and that it was in violation of its contract by failing to have one full-time counselor at every school.  Colflesh ordered the district to rehire counselors who were laid off in a 2013 budget crunch and never rehired. That June, the district laid off every counselor, later recalling some, and not in order of seniority.  Nearly three years later, more than a dozen remain laid off, according to PFT lawyers.  Part of the arbitrator's order would have given the laid-off counselors back pay, but the PFT did not ask for that part of the award to be immediately enforced because of the district's ongoing budget crisis.

"America's school systems are more diverse than ever — buoyed by growth among Hispanics in recent decades — but data show they are more segregated than at any time since Brown v. Board of Education, the 1954 Supreme Court decision intended to eradicate segregation in public schools."
Segregation in Pittsburgh-area schools an enduring issue
Trib Live BY NATASHA LINDSTROM  | Saturday, Feb. 6, 2016, 10:40 p.m.
He didn't think much about it then, but Wyatt Schueler rarely saw a person who was not white during the eight years he attended Catholic school in Pittsburgh's North Hills.  He reluctantly entered the public school system in ninth grade because his parents could not afford Central Catholic High's $10,000 annual price tag — probably not for him, and definitely not for him and three younger brothers.  Initially, Schueler, who is white, found the diverse student makeup of City Charter High School in downtown Pittsburgh to be striking and a bit intimidating. Nearly four years later, just a few months from graduation, the varied blend of races and backgrounds is one of the 17-year-old's favorite things about his school.  “You have to deal with diversity, because in the real world you don't get to choose who you work with,” he said. “Here, they teach you how to work together in a group, in pairs, how to overcome differences and adapt to people from every neighborhood in the city.”  City Charter is a relatively racially integrated school; slightly less than half of the roughly 600 students in 2013-14 were black, 41 percent were white and 4 percent were Hispanic or Asian, state data show.  That's not the case across most of Western Pennsylvania.

Schools, teachers attempt to tackle achievement gap in Western Pennsylvania
Trib Live BY NATASHA LINDSTROM  | Saturday, Feb. 6, 2016, 10:40 p.m.
Western Pennsylvania's school administrators and teachers are working to improve outcomes for all students in schools that are becoming segregated by race and income. Black students are disproportionately represented in poor, urban areas, and white students dominant in suburbs.  “We can't change anybody's race,” City Charter High School CEO and Principal Ron Sofo said. “We need to create more culturally responsive learning environments that are inclusive of all of our students.”  Black students lag behind their white peers on several metrics gauging their likelihood of success. Blacks demonstrate higher rates of absenteeism, suspensions and dropouts, and lower rates of enrolling in advanced or honors courses, going on to post-secondary education and finding family-sustaining jobs.  Mark Brentley, a former Pittsburgh school director, worries that racial disparity in schools contributes to a “permanent underclass” for blacks.

LNP Editorial: Manheim Township school board president and district solicitor must resign
Lancaster Online by The LNP Editorial Board February 6, 2016
THE ISSUE: A leaked audio recording of a Manheim Township school board closed-door meeting  held Jan. 28 revealed the board was conspiring to circumvent the Sunshine Act as it embarked on a search for a new superintendent. During that meeting, board President Bill Murry arranged a series of one-on-one conversations with board members to discuss which search firm they would engage to seek a superintendent to replace John Nodecker, who officially resigned Jan. 29, just 18 months into his four-year contract. Murry intended for the board to choose a search firm in advance of a special public meeting Thursday evening, at which time the board members would ratify their choice without discussion. After LNP reported Thursday on the leaked audio recording, Manheim Township residents turned up in droves to the board’s meeting that evening.  Thursday evening, the Manheim Township school board got the dressing down it deserved.  Residents, many of them parents with children in district schools, called the board’s clandestine efforts to bypass the Sunshine Act “deplorable,” “reprehensible,”  “deeply troubling,” “embarrassing.”
The board members’ transgressions were all of the above, but we’ll give them this: They took their punishment. And several admitted to being embarrassed and apologized.

Carbon, Schuylkill County program awarded grant
Morning Call January 31, 2016
Congressman Lou Barletta, R-11th, state Sen. John Yudichak, D-Luzerne/Carbon, and Lehigh Carbon Community College President Ann Bieber recently announced a major federal grant for the Carbon and Schuylkill County SHINE (schools and homes in education) after-school program. The grant totals nearly $400,000 for each of the next three years.  The federal funding is administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Education via the 21st Century Community Learning Centers grant program. The SHINE grant is one of 50 new 21st CCLC grant awards totaling $16.1 million for 2015-18 in Pennsylvania.
The 21st CCLC program is designed to provide federal funding for the establishment of community learning centers that provide academic, artistic and cultural enrichment opportunities for children. Funds are intended to provide students who attend high-poverty and low-performing schools with additional services to meet state and local standards in core academic subjects; to offer students a broad array of activities that can complement their regular academic programs, and to offer literacy and other educational services to the families of participating children.
SHINE is administered by Lehigh Carbon Community College and provides academic support for nearly 500 students from seven school districts. The comprehensive 42-week after school/summer program includes kindergarten home visits, first to fourth grade STEM Centers, fifth to eighth grade STEM Career Academies, and high school career awareness/mentoring opportunities.

Top 25 Pennsylvania high schools with highest SAT scores
Masterman High School leads list; suburban Philly schools account for most of the highest tier
BY JON TULEYA PhillyVoice Staff February 5, 2016
The Pennsylvania Department of Education this week released data for the average SAT scores at every public high school in the state.  Scores were recorded for 650 high schools. Another 23 schools were listed but did not include data.  The complete report – including each school's average reading, math and writing scores – can be downloaded from the Department of Education's website.  On each of those three tests, students score between 200 and 800 points, for a maximum total score of 2400.
Here are the Top 25 schools in the state:

Education Bloggers Daily Highlights 2-7-16


PSBA Members Budget Update Webinar
FEB 12, 2016 • 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM
Join PSBA Assistant Executive Director of Public Policy John Callahan as he hosts PA Secretary of Education Pedro Rivera to discuss the proposed 2016-17 state budget. Participants will learn about issues impacting public education related to the budget impasse and the recent release of emergency funding to school districts during this live, complimentary members-only webinar.
PLEASE NOTE: Registration is only open to PSBA members. All registrations must be manually verified before links are sent so please allow for a delay in receiving this information. We cannot guarantee receipt of this information in time if registering less than one hour before the presentation starts at noon on Feb. 12.

Public Interest Law Center: Discipline, Truancy and More
Philadelphia, PA Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2016 from 8:30 AM to 3:00 PM
This seminar is designed to address disciplinary issues. The presentation will include disciplinary rights of students not yet identified for special education services or 504 plans; the disciplinary rights of students with IEPs and 504 plans, and an advocate’s view of assisting families with truancy issues.  Tickets range from $50 (webinar) to $200 (private attorneys), and there is a "Pay What You Can Option" so that no one is turned away from this important program. 
CLE credit is available for attorneys licensed in Pennsylvania that attend the seminar in person.
Questions? Contact Michael at mberton@pilcop.org or call 267.546.1303.

PENNSYLVANIA EDUCATION POLICY FORUM
"Southeastern Region Forum Series"Wednesday, February 17, 2016
Networking and Coffee - 9:30 a.m. Program - 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Penn Center for Educational Leadership (5th Floor)
University of Pennsylvania - 3440 Market Street Philadelphia, PA 19104-3325
SUBJECT: Governor Wolf's Proposed Education Budget for 2016-2017
SPEAKERS:
An Overview of the Proposed 2016-2017 State Budget and Education Issues Will Be Provided By:
Representative of The Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center
Ron Cowell, President, The Education Policy and Leadership Center
Statewide and Regional Perspectives Will Be Provided By:
Donna Cooper, Executive Director, Public Citizens for Children and Youth
Deborah Gordon Klehr, Executive Director, Education Law Center
Dr. George Steinhoff, Superintendent, Penn Delco School District
One or more representatives of other statewide and regional organizations are still to be confirmed.
RSVP for Southeastern Forum on-line at

EPLC PENNSYLVANIA EDUCATION POLICY FORUM
"Capital Region Forum Series" Thursday, February 11, 2016
Continental Breakfast - 8:00 a.m. Program - 8:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.
Harrisburg Hilton Hotel - Two North Second Street Harrisburg, PA 17101
SUBJECT: Governor Wolf's Proposed Education Budget for 2016-2017
SPEAKERS:
An Overview of the Proposed 2016-2017 State Budget and Education Issues Will Be Provided By:
Representative of The Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center
Ron Cowell, President, The Education Policy and Leadership Center
Statewide and Regional Perspectives Will Be Provided By:
Dr. Brian Barnhart, Executive Director, Lancaster-Lebanon IU #13
Thomas Gluck, Executive Director, Pennsylvania Association of Intermediate Units
Representatives of other statewide and regional organizations are still to be confirmed.
While there is no registration fee, seating is limited and an RSVP is required.
RSVP for Harrisburg Forum on-line at 

PSBA New School Director Training Remaining Locations:
  • North Central area —Feb. 13 Mansfield University, Mansfield
PSBA New School Director Training
School boards who will welcome new directors after the election should plan to attend PSBA training to help everyone feel more confident right from the start. This one-day event is targeted to help members learn the basics of their new roles and responsibilities. Meet the friendly, knowledgeable PSBA team and bring everyone on your “team of 10” to get on the same page fast.
  • $150 per registrant (No charge if your district has a LEARN PassNote: All-Access members also have LEARN Pass.)
  • One-hour lunch on your own — bring your lunch, go to lunch, or we’ll bring a box lunch to you; coffee/tea provided all day
  • Course materials available online or we’ll bring a printed copy to you for an additional $25
  • Registrants receive one month of 100-level online courses for each registrant, after the live class

Save the Dates for These 2016 Annual EPLC Regional State Budget Education Policy Forums
Sponsored by The Education Policy and Leadership Center
Thursday, February 11 - 8:30-11:00 a.m. - Harrisburg
Wednesday, February 17 - 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. - Philadelphia (University of Pennsylvania)
Thursday, February 25 - 8:30-11:00 a.m. - Pittsburgh
Invitation and more details in January

Attend the United Opt Out Conference in Philadelphia February 26-28
United Opt Out: The Movement to End Corporate Reform will hold its annual conference on Philadelphia from February 26-28.

The Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center will host its Annual Budget Summit on Thursday, March 3, 2016 9:00 - 3:30 at the Hilton Harrisburg.
PA Budget and Policy Center website
Join us for an in-depth look at the Governor's 2016-17 budget proposal, including what it means for education, health and human services, and local communities. The Summit will focus on the leading issues facing the commonwealth in 2016, with workshops, lunch, and a legislative panel discussion.  Space is limited, so fill out the form below to reserve your spot at the Budget Summit.
Thursday, March 3, 2016 Hilton Hotel, Harrisburg Pennsylvania
The event is free, but PBPC welcomes donations of any size to help off-set costs.

PASBO 61st Annual Conference and Exhibits March 8 - 11, 2016
Hershey Lodge and Convention Center, Hershey, Pennsylvania

PenSPRA's Annual Symposium, Friday April 8th in Shippensburg, PA
PenSPRA, or the Pennsylvania School Public Relations Association, has developed a powerhouse line-up of speakers and topics for a captivating day of professional development in Shippensburg on April 8th. Learn to master data to defeat your critics, use stories to clarify your district's brand and take your social media efforts to the next level with a better understanding of metrics and the newest trends.  Join us the evening before the Symposium for a “Conversation with Colleagues” from 5 – 6 pm followed by a Networking Social Cocktail Hour from 6 – 8 pm.  Both the Symposium Friday and the social events on Thursday evening will be held at the Shippensburg University Conference Center. Snacks at the social hour, and Friday’s breakfast and lunch is included in your registration cost. $125 for PenSPRA members and $150 for non-members. Learn more about our speakers and topics and register today at this link:

The Network for Public Education 3rd Annual National Conference April 16-17, 2016 Raleigh, North Carolina.
The Network for Public Education is thrilled to announce the location for our 3rd Annual National Conference. On April 16 and 17, 2016 public education advocates from across the country will gather in Raleigh, North Carolina.  We chose Raleigh to highlight the tremendous activist movement that is flourishing in North Carolina. No one exemplifies that movement better than the Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II, who will be the conference keynote speaker. Rev. Barber is the current president of the North Carolina State Conference of the NAACP, the National NAACP chair of the Legislative Political Action Committee, and the founder of Moral Mondays.

2016 PA Educational Leadership Summit July 24-26 State College
Summit Sponsors: PA Principals Association - PA Association of School Administrators - PA Association of Middle Level Educators - PA Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development 
The 2016 Educational Leadership Summit, co-sponsored by four leading Pennsylvania education associations, provides an excellent opportunity for school district administrative teams and instructional leaders to learn, share and plan together at a quality venue in "Happy Valley." 
Featuring Grant Lichtman, author of EdJourney: A Roadmap to the Future of Education, Secretary of Education Pedro Rivera (invited), and Dana Lightman, author of POWER Optimism: Enjoy the Life You Have... Create the Success You Want, keynote speakers, high quality breakout sessions, table talks on hot topics and district team planning and job alike sessions provides practical ideas that can be immediately reviewed and discussed at the summit before returning back to your district.   Register and pay by April 30, 2016 for the discounted "early bird" registration rate:

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

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