Friday, March 25, 2016

PA Ed Policy Roundup March 25: Moody’s & PNC on #PABudget: Go Borrow Money from Grover Nordquist

Daily postings from the Keystone State Education Coalition now reach more than 3900 Pennsylvania education policymakers – school directors, administrators, legislators, legislative and congressional staffers, Governor's staff, current/former PA Secretaries of Education, Wolf education transition team members, Superintendents, PTO/PTA officers, parent advocates, teacher leaders, business leaders, faith-based organizations, labor organizations, 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, Twitter and LinkedIn

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Keystone State Education Coalition
PA Ed Policy Roundup March 25, 2016:
Moody’s & PNC on #PABudget: Go Borrow Money from Grover Nordquist



PSBA Advocacy Forum & Day on the Hill APR 4, 2016 • 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Join PSBA and your fellow school directors for the third annual Advocacy Forum on April 4, 2016, at the State Capitol in Harrisburg. 

Campaign for Fair Education Funding - Rally for Public Education
Save the date: May 2nd at the Capitol



The #voterregistration deadline for the #PaPrimary is 3/28
Online PA Voter Registration here:


EPLC "Focus on Education" TV Program on PCN - Sunday, March 27 at 3:00 p.m. 
Part 1: A Discussion on High School Career and Technical Education in Pennsylvania, featuring:
Dr. Lee Burket, Director, Bureau of Career and Technical Education, PA Department of Education; Jackie Cullen, Executive Director, PA Association of Career and Technical Administrators; Dan Fogarty, Director of Workforce Development / Chief Operating Officer, Berks County Workforce Development Board; Seth Schram, Principal, Chester County Technical College High School - Brandywine Campus
Part 2: A Discussion on Citizens for the Arts in Pennsylvania and Statewide and National Arts Education Advocacy, featuring:
Jenny L. Hershour, Managing Director, Citizens for the Arts in Pennsylvania


Moody's: Pennsylvania $6.6B budget ignores fiscal challenges
AP State Wire March 24, 2016
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - A credit rating agency on Thursday welcomed the end of Pennsylvania's nine-month budget stalemate but said the spending package doesn't resolve the state's structural budget deficit or address its looming pension crisis.  Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf backed off a veto threat and agreed to permit a Republican-penned $6.6 billion supplemental spending package to become law, saying he relented because it was "time to move on" and start work on the next budget.  Moody's said Thursday that while the budget represents an improvement over "political gridlock," it fails to address the state's long-term fiscal challenges.  "The approved budget ... casts no light on the government's ability to reach compromise on its long-term fiscal challenges," Moody's said in a statement.

“There is nothing that has occurred in recent weeks or months that leads us to believe the spending plan will begin to put Pennsylvania back on a path to structural balance,” the PNC report states. “We do not expect the budget to come close to solving Pennsylvania's fiscal pressures, including its structural budget gap, which is sizeable and growing.”
Pennsylvania's budget woes bring warning from lenders, ratings agencies
Trib Live BY ELIZABETH BEHRMAN  | Thursday, March 24, 2016, 11:05 p.m.
Lawmakers in Harrisburg may have pushed a budget through for 2015-16, providing much-needed relief for school districts and human services providers, but financial institutions say the state's money troubles are far from over.  In a PNC report released hours after Gov. Tom Wolf said he would allow a Republican-designed spending plan to become law, the bank warned that the state's general obligation ratings could be downgraded if nothing is done to address a looming deficit.  It's the latest warning about what could happen if legislators can't come up with a way to correct the state's “fiscal course.” Standard and Poor's threatened to downgrade the state's rating this month and placed it on credit watch with negative implications, according to the report. 

Even with a budget, Moody's sees little hope for Pa.'s finances
Inquirer by Michaelle Bond Updated: MARCH 24, 2016 — 8:39 PM EDT
Pennsylvania's historic budget impasse may be over, but Moody's Investors Service said it may be only a short reprieve.  Gov. Wolf said Wednesday he would not veto the latest $30 billion Republican budget plan, allowing it to become law. He had vetoed previous spending plans, leaving the state without a budget for 266 days.  "While the nine-month stalemate is over, it does not solve any of the ongoing questions over the state's progress toward structural balance over the long-term and therefore is likely to elicit a new stalemate for the next fiscal year beginning July 1," Moody's said in a statement Thursday.   The New York ratings agency picked apart the 2016 budget, saying it increases spending without approving the governor's proposed taxes to work toward fiscal balance. Moody's also criticized the budget's reliance on nearly $1 billion in one-time funds and said it does not include adequate pension contributions and "casts no light on the government's ability to reach compromise on its long-term fiscal challenges."

“Moody’s predicted a new budget stalemate for the next fiscal year, which begins July 1.”
Pennsylvania's $6.6B Budget Ignores Fiscal Challenges: Moody's
NBC10.com March 24, 2016
A credit rating agency on Thursday welcomed the end of Pennsylvania's nine-month budget stalemate but said the spending package doesn't resolve the state's structural budget deficit or address its looming pension crisis.  Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf backed off a veto threat and agreed to permit a Republican-penned $6.6 billion supplemental spending package to become law, saying he relented because it was "time to move on" and start work on the next budget.  Moody's said Thursday that while the budget represents an improvement over "political gridlock," it fails to address the state's long-term fiscal challenges.  "The approved budget ... casts no light on the government's ability to reach compromise on its long-term fiscal challenges," Moody's said in a statement.

Governor’s BLOG: Financial Crisis Coming to Pennsylvania, Warns Another Financial Institution
Governor Wolf’s website March 24, 2016 By: Jeff Sheridan, Press Secretary
Governor Wolf announced yesterday that he would allow the general appropriations and non-preferred appropriations bills sent to him by Republicans to become law, as is, without his signature. The governor believes it is time to move on from the protracted 2015-16 budget impasse and this will allow funding to go out to schools and other services in the short term, but we still face enormous problems that this budget does not even pretend to address.  The math in the Republican budget still does not work and the massive multi-billion dollar deficit is left unaddressed.  S&P, Fitch and Moody’s along with the Independent Fiscal Office have all sounded the alarm and warned of the consequences of not addressing the commonwealth’s massive deficit.  And today, less than a day after the governor announced he would let the Republican budget become law, PNC put out a notice warning that Pennsylvania’s credit rating could still be downgraded. According to PNC, “It is possible Pennsylvania’s general obligation (GO) ratings could be downgraded in the near term, even though the governor allowed the Republican budget to become law.”

Wolf warns of impending 2016-17 budget crisis
By Ron Leonardi  814-870-1680 Erie Times-News March 25, 2016 05:12 AM
Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf on Thursday warned Pennsylvanians that state finances are far from healthy despite his decision Wednesday to allow the Republican-backed 2015-16 state budget to become law.  Wolf said Thursday he has to move forward and address a looming $2 billion deficit for the 2016-17 fiscal year, and he warned in a blog post that "we need a budget Pennsylvanians can be proud of -- one that funds essential services, invests in education, eliminates the $2 billion deficit, and brings us back from the brink. That's our job.''

Local legislators, school officials respond to budget
Republican Herald BY STEPHEN J. PYTAK Published: March 24, 2016
Following the governor’s decision to end the 266-day budget impasse Wednesday, school officials from Schuylkill County expressed relief.  “Mahanoy Area didn’t have to borrow money, but we would have run out of money in late April or early May. We would have had to do something,” Jack J. Hurst, Mahanoy Area’s business administrator, said.  Hurst and Stephen C. Curran, Pottsville Area’s business manager, were among school district officials from across the state who gathered in Harrisburg on Wednesday to take a stand on the matter. They attended a press conference organized by the PA Association of School Business Officials which was held at the Capitol Rotunda on Wednesday morning, an effort to urge Governor Wolf to sign the budget bill to allow schools to remain open and avoid increased costs and financial chaos.

Delco Times Editorial: Pa. has a budget, but no answers
Delco Times POSTED: 03/24/16, 10:12 PM EDT | UPDATED: 27 SECS AGO
After a nine-month showdown over spending and taxes, Gov. Tom Wolf was the first to blink.
It might take a little while longer for the rest of Pennsylvania to come to grips with what happened.  Democrat Wolf, who was under increasing pressure to give up his pipe dream of a massive package of tax hikes and increased spending, finally relented when some in his own party, wary of talk of schools that might shut their doors, urged him to do so.  Wolf made clear he would hold his nose and allow the latest GOP budget plan to become law this Sunday.  After months of wrangling that got us exactly nowhere, we’re reminded of the old Peggy Lee tune: “Is That All There Is?”  Wolf made pretty clear he was not signing the Republican budget because “he could not sign something he did not agree with.”  So after nine months, we’re right back where we were.  The state still faces huge fiscal issues, including a budget shortfall that, according to Wolf, is now over $2 billion.  Luckily, because of their inaction, the governor and Republicans in the Legislature get to do it all over again.

BCCT Editorial: Wolf relents, but it's not over
Bucks County Courier Times Editorial Posted: Friday, March 25, 2016 12:15 am
The nearly nine-month stare-down between Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf and the Republican-controlled Legislature over the 2015-16 state budget ended Wednesday. Wolf blinked, agreeing to no longer stand in the way of part of a GOP-crafted budget that provides $3 billion in critical aid to public schools.  Without that money, some school districts were quite literally functioning day to day, and the need to possibly close schools was being openly discussed. Faced with that prospect, plus increasing pressure from Democrats who hinted strongly they might bolt and join ranks with Republicans to override a veto of the GOP budget, Wolf relented. He said he won’t sign the Republican spending plan, which provides about half the education aid he wanted, but he won’t veto it, either. The symbolic protest is just that; the supplemental Republican budget takes effect Monday, and school districts will begin receiving the money to which they are entitled.  We wish we could say this puts a lid on one of the more grievous examples of government ineptitude in Pennsylvania’s long and storied history. But not so fast. Wolf’s finally giving in on the 2015-16 budget can hardly be considered a surrender; it’s more like a tactical retreat. All along, it has been Wolf’s strategy to hold out for higher education spending and huge tax increases to close what he says is a growing structural deficit; Democrats estimate it will hit $2 billion for 2016-17.

Budget issues may arise again for Wolf, GOP in 2016-17
By Karen Langley, Kate Giammarise & Chris Potter Post-Gazette March 25, 2016 12:22 AM
After nearly nine months of watching the Pennsylvania state budget impasse, some observers said Thursday that the coming year could look a lot like the past year.  Whether a similar outcome would be acceptable was a matter of perspective.  “This is an interregnum,” said Terry Madonna, director of the Franklin & Marshall College Poll and a longtime observer of state politics. “This isn’t a truce. This is just a temporary moment, and a transition to the next battle, which actually has been going on. Both sides are going to stay exactly where they are as we move into the next round.”

“The funds that we will receive fall well short of what we need to truly meet the needs of our students.”
Pa. budget does little to help schools
York Daily Record Opinion by Shelly Merkle, Guest Columnist1:31 p.m. EDT March 24, 2016
Shelly Merkle is superintendent of the York Suburban School District.
It seems that as of today, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has a 2015-16 budget. Hip, hip hooray!  Unfortunately, this budget does little to help education in Pennsylvania.  Fact: Education remains woefully underfunded in Pennsylvania. You have heard the cries from your local school districts that we need immediate funds to close out the school year. Mercifully, we will now receive these funds. We can pay our bills.  Unfortunately, the funds that we will receive fall well short of what we need to truly meet the needs of our students. The budget that lumbered and finally eeked its way through the system includes funding at the 2014-15 level. Indeed, it does include an additional $150 million, but we still have no idea if or how these funds will be distributed.

Local school districts react to passage of Pa. budget
Lynn Ondrusek  Pocono Record Writer Posted Mar. 23, 2016 at 4:56 PM
After starting the 2015-16 school year without a state budget, Monroe County school districts can now breathe a little easier over the spring break and Easter holiday before moving forward with next year’s budget.  Gov. Tom Wolf passed a $30 billion budget Wednesday after a nine-month gridlock with lawmakers, which will bring the remaining state funding to schools throughout the commonwealth.  The news comes the day before the Easter and spring break for districts in the county.  “It’s time,” said East Stroudsburg Area School District Superintendent Sharon Laverdure. “We can’t rest one second. We have to start the 16-17 budget after the holiday. There’s a lot of work to be done.”  She said the district will have a better idea on what it will be receiving for their basic education subsidy for the 2016-17 school year, but work needs to be done for the underfunded districts, such as East Stroudsburg, Laverdure said.

Quakertown officials fear budget battle not over
Intelligencer By Gary Weckselblatt, staff writer Posted: Thursday, March 24, 2016 10:30 pm
School officials in Quakertown expressed relief Thursday night that money would begin flowing from Harrisburg to cash-starved districts next week, but at the same time warned that they could find themselves in the same place next year.  "Although the immediate crisis is over, we're not out of the woods yet," school board President Paul Stepanoff said.  On Wednesday, Wolf said he would not stand in the way of a Republican-crafted budget. While he won't sign the measure, he decided not to veto it after meeting with concerned Democratic lawmakers this week. His non-veto will release $3 billion in subsidies to the state's 500 districts. Many had been forced to take out $1 billion in loans to pay bills.

Pennsylvania Budget Stalemate Ends, Clearing Way for School Aid
Education Week State Ed Watch By Daarel Burnette II on March 23, 2016 5:45 PM
An eight-month budget stalemate in Pennsylvania ended Wednesday when Gov. Tom Wolf, a Democrat, backed off his threat to veto a spending plan passed by Republican lawmakers, freeing up millions of dollars in education funding to districts.  But the plan, which will go into effect Monday, provides school districts with just half of the $400 million funding increase Wolf originally sought, according to the Associated Press. It will will distribute $6.6 billion—a 3 percent increase in statewide spending— without raising taxes.   It's the last piece of a $30 billion spending plan, of which more than $9 billion will be spent on the state's K-12 system. 

“More registered voters hold the state legislature (50%) than the governor (35%) responsible for the state’s late budget, a proportion that has remained consistent since August. As with previous surveys, responses about the budget are heavily influenced by party; about twothirds (68%) of Democrats believe the state legislature is more responsible than the governor for the budget impasse, but one in two (59%) Independent voters and only one quarter (25%) of Republicans believe so. More (79%) voters believe that elected leaders should compromise to complete the budget than believe they should stand firm on their principles even if a budget does not get passed (17%). More registered voters believe the state should enact a mix of spending cuts and tax increases to balance the budget (44%) than believe that only program cuts (35%) or increased taxes (12%) should be used. Large majorities support taxing companies that extract and sell natural gas (73%) and increasing tobacco taxes (79%) as a way to balance the state budget.”
The Franklin & Marshall College Poll March 2016
The March 2016 Franklin & Marshall College Poll of Pennsylvania registered voters reveals stark party differences in the presidential nominating contests. The Democratic presidential primary race in Pennsylvania has changed little since January. The poll shows Hillary Clinton with a sizable lead over Bernie Sanders, 53% to 28%, which is consistent with her leads in January and February. The poll also shows that both candidates are considered favorably by registered Democrats. On the other side, though, the Republican presidential primary race continues to shift. Donald Trump (33%) leads, as he has since October, but John Kasich (30%) is now a close second. Unlike registered Democrats, registered Republicans do not have uniformly positive feelings about their candidates.  Hillary Clinton currently holds a double-digit lead over both Donald Trump (46% to 33%) and Ted Cruz (45% to 35%) in Pennsylvania. The Republican candidates are deeply unpopular among Pennsylvania’s registered voters.
View the latest Franklin & Marshall College Poll (PDF):

“He also said that starting in 2017-18, he expects the district will have to close three schools annually to offset the increase of 10,000 charter students projected over the next five years. The increase stems from new schools and charter expansions the SRC has approved.
SRC adopts $2.8 billion spending outline; no new city revenues sought
Inquirer by Martha Woodall, Staff Writer Updated: MARCH 25, 2016 — 1:07 AM EDT
The Philadelphia School Reform Commission on Thursday approved the broad outlines of a proposed $2.8 billion budget for next year that, while anticipating it will have to pay more for charters and pensions, does not see the district's having to ask City Council for new revenue.  In a briefing before the SRC meeting, Superintendent William R. Hite Jr. said the district would ask Harrisburg for more money in the fiscal year that begins July 1, but for the first time in years the city will not be tapped for more.  "There's no 'ask' to City Council," he told reporters.  But amid the somewhat upbeat report, Hite expressed concerns about the district's long-range financial health.  Its five-year spending plan forecasts deficits beginning with fiscal 2017-18 if the district does not get new sources of revenue. That usually means more money from the state, city, or federal governments.

Despite uncertainty, District plans $440 million in new investments
Officials project high charter growth and plan to close 3 schools a year starting in 2018. They will not ask City Council for more money.
The notebook by Dale Mezzacappa March 24, 2016 — 5:57pm
School District officials outlined a five-year plan Thursday that shows a system in continued financial peril, even as it tries to make new investments in schools and classrooms – about $440 million over that period.  The School Reform Commission adopted a $2.8 billion “lump sum” budget for the 2017-18 school year at a meeting the same evening.  Expenditures are growing by 4.5 percent a year, while revenue is only anticipated to grow by 2.2 percent a year, said Uri Monson, the School District’s chief financial officer. The District will not ask City Council for additional funds this year, officials said.  Though the District is projecting higher revenues from the state, there is nothing but uncertainty there.  Gov. Wolf, who has unsuccessfully sought historic new investments in education, this week allowed a Republican budget to become law. The spending plan would give Philadelphia $52 million in additional funds for the rest of this year and $80 million more next year – maybe.

Philadelphia's pathway to universal pre-K
Daily Pennsylvanian By CHARLOTTE LARACY  03/23/16 1:40am
Philadelphia is demanding implementation of universal preschool to every 3- and 4-year old, regardless of their need or neighborhood. Mayor Jim Kenney has made strong campaign promises to make universal preschool a priority and now the city is trying to bring these promises to fruition.  In May 2015, Philadelphians voted overwhelmingly — with an 80 percent vote — to create the Philadelphia Commission on Universal Pre-Kindergarten. The Commission’s goal is to propose a pre-K program that provides quality, affordable and accessible services for three- and four-year-old children throughout Philadelphia.  In February, the Commission published a draft of their recommendations to implement universal pre-K. One of their suggestions was to obtain funding from multiple sources including federal Head Start, state-funded Pre-K Counts and local private funding.  While there is no single representative estimate for the cost of quality preschool in Philadelphia, the Commission has found that the average cost would be $13,000 per preschool child. This would provide quality care for eight hours a day and 260 days per year.

Receiver Barnes leaving top post in Chester Upland School District
By the Delco Times Staff POSTED: 03/24/16, 10:10 PM EDT | UPDATED: 31 SECS AGO
CHESTER >> Chester Upland School District Receiver Francis V. Barnes announced his resignation Thursday from the top job in the school district.  Barnes told the elected school board his last day will be May 1, 17 months after then-Pennsylvania Education Secretary Carolyn Dumaresq appointed him chief recovery officer of the district.  A former state education secretary himself, as well as former superintendent of three school districts, principal and classroom teacher, Barnes, 66, of Bucks County, told school board members that the Pennsylvania Department of Education is actively searching for his successor.  “Obviously Chester Upland School district had tremendous financial problems when I took this job, and it still does,” Barnes stated in a prepared press release. “That said, progress has been made.

Fitch Downgrades Chester Community Charter School's (PA) Revs to 'BB'; Rating Watch Negative
Reuters – Fitch Press Release | Fri Feb 24, 2012 1:11pm EST
Fitch Ratings downgrades to 'BB' from 'BBB' the rating on approximately $57.4 million of outstanding charter school revenue bonds issued by the Delaware County Industrial Development Authority, PA (DCIDA) on behalf of Chester Community Charter School (CCCS).  In addition, Fitch places the bonds on Rating Watch Negative.

Seven Generations Charter School to suspend middle school pending OK from East Penn
Andrew Wagaman Contact Reporter Of The Morning Call March 24, 2016
EMMAUS — Seven Generations Charter School will shut down its middle school for at least the 2016-17 school year if it gets the OK from the East Penn School District.  Seven Generations' board of trustees voted 6-0 Thursday to request an amendment to its charter to suspend the sixth, seventh and eighth grades after the current school year.  If East Penn approves the amended charter, the administration and trustees will collaborate to develop a transition plan for students and their families, according to the approved proposal. Trustee Stephen Peters said they have not yet discussed the transition plan with East Penn.  Trustees said at previous meetings they were considering closing the middle school because of discipline problems and other issues they say have prevented the school from fulfilling its project-based learning and environment-focused mission.

It's official: Nazareth Area teachers have a contract
By Rudy Miller | For lehighvalleylive.com Email the author | Follow on Twitter on March 24, 2016 at 4:10 PM, updated March 24, 2016 at 4:18 PM
Nazareth Area School District teachers approved a four-year contract on Thursday.
Their vote following the school board's vote on Friday seals the deal.  The contract was tentatively settled hours before the teachers planned to strike on Friday.  "The teachers would like to thank the entire community -- parents and students alike, for their overwhelming support," said teachers union President Adele Mitch. "Without the diversion of working without a contract, teachers can again go back to their main focus of education."

West Chester Area School District considers full-day kindergarten
Daily Local By Candice Monhollan, cmonhollan@ 21st-centurymedia.com, @CMonhollanDLN on Twitter POSTED: 03/24/16, 6:37 PM EDT | UPDATED: 7 HRS AGO
WESTTOWN >> As West Chester Area School District Superintendent Jim Scanlon sees it, this is the biggest decision facing the district in the seven years he has been there.  On March 29, the school board will decide if the district will move from half-day kindergarten to full-day kindergarten starting in 2017-18.  “It’s something that has been talked about probably 20 years ago and every year it comes up a little bit,” Scanlon said. “We went through a process this year, a full cost-benefit analysis of having full-day kindergarten.”  On Tuesday night, Scanlon held the second of two informational meetings about full-day kindergarten at Stetson Middle School, which was open to anyone interested.

“Philadelphia has become the poster child of the school nurse deficiency.
In 2011, the school district laid off or did not fill the positions of retiring school nurses, reducing its nursing staff by 100 from about 280. Today, the city district employs about 180 nurses for its 332 schools and 200,000 students.”
Many School Districts Don't Have Enough School Nurses
Less than half of the country’s public schools employ a full-time nurse.
US News By Lauren Camera March 23, 2016, at 3:58 p.m.+ More
Less than half of the country’s public schools employ a full-time nurse, and in some of the worst cases – largely in poor, urban school systems – there’s only one school nurse for every 4,000 students.  “This absolutely has real consequences,” says Beth Mattey, president of the National Association of School Nurses. “If you have a child who isn’t healthy, who doesn’t feel well, who has a toothache, they will not learn. School nurses keep kids in schools.”  As a result, teachers, principals and administrative staff are tending to playground cuts, doling out medication, keeping tabs on food allergies, and watching the blood sugar levels of students with diabetes.  The problem isn’t new. School districts have steadily shed school nurse staff since the early 2000s as budgets tightened heading into the Great Recession. But since then, most districts haven’t made a concerted effort to rehire and instead have opted to rotate nurses among schools.
Indeed, more than 30 percent of schools only have a part-time nurse, according to the latest figures available from the National Association of School Nurses.

Chicago Teachers Union votes to hold one-day strike on April 1
Washington Post By Emma Brown March 24 at 12:49 PM  
The Chicago Teachers Union has decided to walk off the job for one day on April 1, an effort meant to draw attention to ongoing contract negotiations and city schools’ dire financial outlook.  he one-day strike means that the city’s 400,000 students will miss class on two consecutive Fridays: They were already scheduled to be out of class on March 25, when city schools close for the first of three furlough days meant to save the cash-strapped district approximately $30 million.
The nation’s third-largest school district faces a $1.1 billion structural deficit, largely due to growing pension payments, and its financial troubles have given Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) an opening to push for state takeover.


PSBA Advocacy Forum & Day on the Hill April 4th
APR 4, 2016 • 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Join PSBA and your fellow school directors for the third annual Advocacy Forum on April 4, 2016, at the State Capitol in Harrisburg. This year’s event will have a spotlight on public education highlighting school districts’ exemplary student programs. Hear from legislators on how advocacy makes a difference in the legislative process and the importance of public education advocacy. Government Affairs will take a deeper dive into the legislative priorities and will provide tips on how to be an effective public education advocate. There will be dedicated time for you and your fellow advocates to hit the halls to meet with your legislators on public education. This is your chance to share the importance of policy supporting public education and make your voice heard on the Hill. Online advanced registration will close on April 1, 4 p.m. On-site registrants are welcome.

Pennsylvania Association of School Administrators (PASA) 2016 Education Congress April 6-7, 2016
professional development program for school administrators
Focus: "The Myths of Creativity: The Truth about How Innovative Companies Generate Great Ideas"  Featured Presenter: Dr. David Burkus
April 6-7, 2016 Radisson Hotel Harrisburg in Camp Hill
The program will focus on how school leaders can develop and utilize creativity in education management, operations, curriculum and leadership goals. The second day will allow participants to select from multiple discussion/work sessions focusing on concepts presented by Dr. Burkus and facilitated by school leaders who have demonstrated success in creative thinking and leadership in schools across the commonwealth.
Deadline for hotel accommodations: March 15
See the PASA website for more information at: www.pasa-net.org/2016edcongress.

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:

Briefing: Public Education Funding in Pennsylvania
TUE, APR 12 AT 8:30 AM, PHILADELPHIA, PA
Join attorneys Michael Churchill, Jennifer Clarke and Dan Urevick-Ackelsberg for a briefing on:
  • the current budget impasse
  • the basics of education funding
  • the school funding lawsuit
  • the 2016-2017 proposed budget
 1.5 CLE credits available to PA licensed attorneys.  Light breakfast provided.
WHEN: Tuesday, April 12, 2016 from 8:30 AM to 10:00 AM (EDT)
WHERE: United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey - 1709 Benjamin Franklin Parkway 1st Floor, Philadelphia, PA 19103

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.

Join the Pennsylvania Principals Association at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, June 21, 2016, at The Capitol in Harrisburg, PA, for its second annual Principals' Lobby Day.
Pennsylvania Principals Association Monday, March 21, 2016 9:31 AM
 To register, contact Dr. Joseph Clapper at clapper@paprincipals.org by Tuesday, June 14, 2016. If you need assistance, we will provide information about how to contact your legislators to schedule meetings.
Click here for the informational flyer, which includes important issues to discuss with your legislators.

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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