Friday, December 30, 2016

PA Ed Policy Roundup Dec 30: Eichelberger to chair PA Senate Education Committee

Daily postings from the Keystone State Education Coalition now reach more than 4000 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, school solicitors, principals, 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

These daily emails are archived and searchable at http://keystonestateeducationcoalition.org
Follow us on Twitter at @lfeinberg

Keystone State Education Coalition
PA Ed Policy Roundup Dec 30, 2016
Eichelberger to chair PA Senate Education Committee



Confirmation hearing for @BetsyDeVos tentatively scheduled for Jan. 11, @khefling of @PoliticoPro reports

More than 90% of all American children attend public schools.

DeVos would be the first Secretary of Education who has not been a public school parent or student; she has never worked in a public school, attended one, or sent her children to one.  She has never served in any educational or governmental capacity.

Thus far, I have been unable to find any press coverage of her ever having visited a traditional public school.

In a constituent response letter regarding the nomination of Betsy DeVos dated December 2, 2016, Senator Toomey stated: “I believe she is a great pick.”  His Washington, D.C. phone number is (202) 224-4254

Senator Casey is a member of the Senate Health, Education Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee that will be holding the confirmation hearing.  His Washington, D.C. phone number is (202) 224-6324



Powerful committees get new leaders in Pennsylvania Senate
AP State Wire Published: December 29, 2016
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - Several powerful committees are getting new leaders in Pennsylvania's Republican-controlled state Senate.  Senate officials said Thursday that Sen. John Eichelberger of Blair County will chair the Education Committee, while Sen. Lisa Baker of Luzerne County will chair the Health and Human Services Committee.  The posts opened up after Lloyd Smucker of Lancaster County and Pat Vance of Cumberland County did not seek new terms. The new two-year legislative session starts Tuesday.  Eichelberger's spot as Finance Committee chair will go to Sen. Scott Hutchinson of Venango County and Baker's spot as Labor and Industry Committee chair will go to Sen. Kim Ward of Westmoreland County.  Ward is leaving her post atop the committee that handles casino gambling legislation and is calling off a Tuesday meeting with representatives of Pennsylvania's 12 casinos.

Meet John Eichelberger
Senator Eichelberger’s Blog
John Eichelberger was re-elected in 2014 to his third term in the Pennsylvania Senate. John has a reputation as one of the most fiscal and social conservative members of the Senate and has rallied the government reform movement in Harrisburg. He is a staunch advocate for government accountability and fiscal restraint, a guardian of family values, and an uncompromising supporter of human life.  Setting an example for others to follow, John has adopted many cost-cutting procedures within his offices to save taxpayer money. He drives his own blue pickup truck and does not request reimbursement for eligible in-district mileage. He returns his Cost of Living Adjustment to the state each year. His responsible spending has saved an estimated $1 million over his first two terms. John has been recognized for his work on behalf of local government and business. He has received numerous awards, including the “Guardian of Small Business Award” from the National Federation of Independent Business for each of the past four legislative sessions, the “Legislative Service Award” from the Pennsylvania Municipal League, and the “Conservative Excellence Award” from the American Conservative Union.

Pennsylvania’s Incoming State Senators
Email from Senator Folmer December 30, 2016
On January 3, 2017, the newly elected Senators will be sworn in.
Senator-elect John DiSanto: 15th Senatorial District – Dauphin (part) and Perry Counties
Senator-elect Wayne Langerholc: 35th Senatorial District – Bedford, Cambria and Clearfield (part) Counties – http://www.senatorlangerholc.com/
Senator-elect Daniel Laughlin: 49th Senatorial District – Erie (part) County – http://www.senatorlaughlin.com/
Senator-elect Scott Martin: 13th Senatorial District – Lancaster (part) County – http://www.senatorscottmartinpa.com/
Senator-elect Mike Regan: 31st Senatorial District – Cumberland (part) and York (part) Counties
Senator-elect Sharif Street: 3rd Senatorial District – Philadelphia (part) County

New Lancaster County advocacy group plans to promote public education, spotlight charter school issues
Lancaster Online by KARA NEWHOUSE | Staff Writer December 30, 2016
What: The first meeting of the Pro Public Education & Democracy Action Team
When: Sat., Jan. 7 at 2 p.m.
Where: J.P. McCaskey High School choir room, 445 N Reservoir St, Lancaster, PA 17602
A new advocacy group wants to be a “legislative watchdog” and support public schools across district lines in Lancaster County.  The Pro Public Education & Democracy Action Team will focus on the local impact of statewide issues, such as school funding and charter school law, according to organizers.  The effort sprouted from a broader meeting of hundreds of county residents concerned about Donald Trump’s presidency, but organizers said the team will be bipartisan and not oppositional.  “(We want to) work ‘with,’ not ‘against’ to create positive change,” said Cheryl Desmond, a retired Millersville University education professor and School District of Lancaster board member.  Desmond proposed starting the action team during a November “emergency community meeting” of 400 local residents concerned about Donald Trump’s election.
About 40 people from dispersed school districts and even neighboring counties expressed interest in the action team, Desmond said.  One of those people was Sarah Wanner, another Lancaster resident who stepped up to help organize the group. Wanner works as a therapeutic aide for school-age children. She said she’s concerned about charter school oversight and whether such schools are appropriately serving students with disabilities.  Education advocates in Pennsylvania have long called for changes to charter school funding and increased accountability.  Funding for charter schools, including cyber charters, primarily comes from the districts whose students attend the schools. But the local boards have little recourse when charter schools perform poorly and no oversight on their financial management.

Top 10: The Keystone Crossroads team's 2016 coverage highlights
Keystone Crossroads/WHYY Newsworks BY EMILY PREVITI, WITF DECEMBER 30, 2016
The Keystone Crossroads team reflected on our body of work over past year and picked these highlights.  Take a look. Feedback is welcome. So are suggestions for next year's coverage.

Scranton School District faces limited budget options going forward
Times Tribune BY DAVID SINGLETON / PUBLISHED: DECEMBER 30, 2016
The Scranton School District will have limited choices and faces potentially difficult decisions as it looks beyond the coming year to its 2018 budget, school board members acknowledged Thursday.  “To be honest, we don’t have a lot of options left,” board Vice President Cy Douaihy said.  The board on Wednesday adopted a $153.6 million budget for 2017 that used mostly one-time revenue sources, including $13.6 million in borrowed money, to close a $17 million gap between revenues and expenditures.  The bulk of the borrowing — about $10 million — came through a budget-stretching practice known as “scoop and toss.” Employed for decades by cash-strapped governments, the tactic involves borrowing additional money to pay off maturing bonds, effectively extending the repayment timetable into the future.

State taking more time on Erie schools plan
Education secretary to get briefing Jan. 27
GoErie By Ed Palattella ed.palattella@timesnews.com December 30, 2016
The state's evaluation of the Erie School District's $31.8 million financial plan is taking longer than expected.  The secretary of the state Department of Education, Pedro Rivera, is to get briefed on the plan on Jan. 27, according to an email that Erie schools Superintendent Jay Badams said the state sent him Wednesday.  Gov. Tom Wolf, in a visit to Erie on Dec. 8, said the state's review would be done by Jan. 7, or 30 days after the Erie School District submitted its plan, designed to help keep the 11,500-student system solvent. The state on Wednesday also asked the district to submit additional information on the plan.  "They are going to contact us with these questions," Badams said. "What they want in many cases is just the backup. When we make assertions in many cases, they just want to know what the supporting documents are."  The Department of Education's executive deputy secretary, David Volkman, will conduct the Jan. 27 briefing with Rivera, Badams said. He said the state did not explain why the briefing was scheduled for later in the month.

U.S. judge nixes bid to revive closed midstate charter school
Penn Live By Matt Miller | mmiller@pennlive.com  Email the author | Follow on Twitter  on December 29, 2016 at 12:14 PM
More than two years after it closed, a federal judge has dismissed a bid by parents and students to revive the New Hope Academy Charter School in York.  The ruling U.S. Middle District Judge John E. Jones III issued this week marks the latest in a string of legal defeats for the school's proponents. The end of the federal dispute came when Jones honored a plea by York City School District officials to dismiss a lawsuit the school's backers filed in 2013.  Jones rejected claims by New Hope supporters that the district had no legitimate grounds for refusing to renew the charter for the school, which opened in 2007 and ultimately served about 800 students in grades 5 through 12.  School backers claimed the district refused to renew the charter because New Hope was siphoning too much money away from the fiscally- and educationally-troubled city schools.
Jones concluded, however, that the renewal rejection followed proper procedures. He credited the reasons the district gave - including sub-par academic performance - for ending New Hope's operation.  Earlier legal defeats for New Hope's advocates included a 2013 decision by the Pennsylvania State Charter School Appeal Board that found the refusal to renew the school's charter was proper. Commonwealth Court also sided with the school district in an April 2014 ruling that guaranteed New Hope's closure that June.

PSERS: School pensions plan might recover funds lost on mortgage-backed securities
Trib Live DEBRA ERDLEY  | Thursday, Dec. 29, 2016, 11:00 p.m.
Pennsylvania's school pension fund will recover some of the losses it suffered in the Great Recession after the settlement of a class-action suit against Bank of America.  The Pennsylvania School Employees Retirement System, or PSERs, has $51 billion in assets and was the lead plaintiff in a 2011 lawsuit against Bank of America. The suit alleged the financial institution hid debt and misled investors about its position in mortgage-backed securities between February 2009 and October 2010.  U.S. District Court Judge William H. Pauley III, of the Southern District of New York, this week approved a $335 million settlement. Tuesday's ruling ends nearly six years of litigation.  Attorneys for Bank of America did not return a call for comment.  PSERs spokeswoman Evelyn Williams said it is unclear how much the pension fund will recover in the settlement.  “Final payouts to members of the class are still being determined,” Williams said.

If our public schools aren't broken, don't try to fix them
Grove City Allied News December30, 2016
MANY public schools are doing a good job.
So, to Betsy DeVos, President-elect Donald Trump’s choice for education secretary, we’d say this: If it’s not broken, don’t fix it (the word “ain’t” generally appears in that saying, but this is an editorial about education so we cleaned up the grammar in case teachers are reading).  It’s true that some public school systems are not serving students as they should.
But just as you shouldn’t take the medicine prescribed for someone else, a successful school shouldn’t be subjected to the policy prescriptions meant to cure underperforming schools. And the people doing the prescribing should be familiar with the patients in need of help.  Having exhausted that metaphor, we’ll put it plainly: Except for some civil rights issues that may require federal intervention, education is best left to the states. And even better, to local school boards, whose members are far more accountable to their constituents than any D.C. bureaucrats and policymakers ever would be.  Is education in Pennsylvania perfect? Of course not.  Our charter school law doesn’t require nearly enough oversight of charter schools, as state Auditor General Eugene DePasquale has pointed out.  We have far too many school districts: a whopping 500 of them.  And for too many years, Pennsylvania — unlike most other states — didn’t have a formula for the fair funding of schools.

Letter: Why Pa. needs to shake up Harrisburg
Delco Times Letter by Rocco Polidoro POSTED: 12/30/16, 5:09 AM EST
To the Times: The political career of retiring state Rep. William F. Adolph, R-165, is a clear case of why Pennsylvania needs a State Constitutional amendment to install term limits and to lower the number of legislators.  The 165th state House district covers parts of Morton, Springfield, Marple and Radnor. The Pa. General Assembly has 203 members and the Pa. Senate has 50 members. Government watchdog groups have labeled Pa. as the fifth most corrupt state in the country. House members start off making $85,339 a year with excellent benefits. When Adolph started in 1989, he was earning about $35,000. Employee benefit specialists estimate that a great benefit package, like what state legislators make, is equal to about an extra 35 percent of their salary. Bill Adolph ended his 28 years with a salary of $120,000.  Employee benefit specialists would also say that the schedule of a state legislator is considered part-time. The average full-time worker works about 250 days a year, whereas state lawmakers work about 125 days a year. In addition, many lawmakers have other jobs or businesses, which confirms the fact that their state jobs are part-time. Plus they get over $600 a month car allowance, $159 a day for expenses and a full medical package that includes nursing home protection. So when one adds up Bill Adolph’s salary, his benefits, car allowance, per diem expenses, office rent, staff salaries and their benefits, the state of Pennsylvania has probably spent over $4 Million in the last 28 years.

Wagner: PA politicians must control costs (column)
York Daily Record Letter by Senator Scott Wagner 9:39 a.m. EST December 29, 2016
It may not be a surprise to anyone that the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is again facing a budget shortfall.  What does this mean?  It is very simple – Harrisburg spends more money than it brings in.  Unfortunately, for some, the solution is to raise taxes, rather than control spending and focus on efficiencies.  Most people know that I am a private sector business owner. In the private sector business world, business owners learn to manage and control costs first and only raise prices as a last resort.  It is very clear to me that Harrisburg does not understand the concept of managing and controlling costs.  In no uncertain terms, I want to be very clear – I will not vote for any tax increases until Harrisburg begins to manage and control costs.  As I have continued to say since day one when I arrived in Harrisburg in April 2014: Harrisburg doesn’t have a revenue problem; Harrisburg has a spending problem.

ESTHER CEPEDA: System of evaluating teachers gets failing grade
Mercury Letter POSTED: 12/28/16, 8:24 PM EST | UPDATED: 1 DAY AGO
You know something in education is broken when both ends of the political spectrum are saying the same thing about it. The hot-button issue of teacher evaluations is a duel between the left, which believes they are ineffective in identifying excellence or negligence, and the right, which believes that this evaluation dysfunction makes it nearly impossible to get bad teachers out of classrooms.  When you dig beneath the surface bluster of competing political views on how classroom teachers in public schools should be evaluated, you find agreement on one point: All students deserve highly qualified teachers who are effective in leading classrooms in which students make academic progress.  But that’s where the consensus ends.

How to save the dying newspaper editorial
Philly Daily News Attytood by Will Bunch, Daily News Columnist  @will_bunch  updated: DECEMBER 29, 2016 — 6:26 PM EST
Recently, I've been thinking a lot about something that most people aren't thinking about much at all these days: Newspaper editorials. They've pretty much been around since Gutenberg invented the printing press, and -- especially in smaller cities and towns where up through the end of the 20th Century a newspaper was a near-monopoly source of news -- they've been known to actually wield influence.   At their occasional worst, newspaper editorials can be tools of a bullying millionaire (or billionaire) publisher, but at their best these screeds can force public officials to deal with society's problems or to look at hard facts they might wish to ignore. Well, that was once true, anyway. The reality is that artful newspaper editorials are supposed to take a step back and bring two things to the complex issues of the day: Knowledge and reason, which are the lingua franca of an educated elite. In other words, exactly the kind of thing that America's angry and feeling-betrayed middle class wants nothing to do with these days.

Examining Pennsylvania charter school revenues, expenditures and transparency
PSBA Website
Charter schools were created with the intent of allowing communities to establish public schools independent from existing traditional public schools as a means to improve student performance, increase learning opportunities, encourage innovation, create professional development opportunities for teachers, and to provide expanded school choice, particularly to provide opportunities for children that were being underserved.  Under current Charter School Law, school districts are responsible for authorizing the creation of, assessing the performance of, and periodically reauthorizing brick-and-mortar charter schools located within their boundaries. Charter schools receive the bulk of their funding via payments from the school district where the charter school student resides. Many of the laws, regulations and other mandates that dictate what school districts are required to do, how they must do it and, ultimately, how much will be spent to get it done do not apply to charter schools.  PSBA’s report takes a closer look at how charter schools and school districts are spending public funds and highlights some of the issues encountered by PSBA in obtaining information from charter schools under the Pennsylvania Right-to-Know Law. The full report is available here.
The records submitted by charter schools as part of the RTK request can be accessed here: https://www.psba.org/charter-rtk-docs.

Charter Advocacy Groups Want Higher Standards for Online-Only Schools
Education Week Charters & Choice Blog By Corey Mitchell on June 16, 2016 5:45 AM
Three of the nation's leading charter school advocacy groups are calling for a complete overhaul of state policies governing online-only charter schools.  A new report from the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, the National Association of Charter School Authorizers, and the 50-State Campaign for Achievement Now (50CAN) outlines the challenges facing the online-only, or virtual, schools and offers recommendations to hold their authorizers accountable for student performance and financial decisions.  The three groups largely crafted the report's recommendations in response to sweeping research findings released last fall that showed that students who took classes through virtual schools made dramatically less progress than their peers in traditional schools. It was the first national study of the cybercharter sector and was conducted by the Center for Research and Educational Outcomes at Stanford University, the Center on Reinventing Public Education, and Mathematica Policy Research.
In a review of online charter school performance, the charter school advocacy groups found that:
·         On average, full-time virtual charter students make no gains in math and less than half the gains in reading of their peers in traditional brick-and-mortar public schools.
·         All subgroups of students, including those in poverty, English-language learners, and special education students, perform worse in full-time virtual charters than in traditional public schools.
·         Students who leave full-time virtual charter schools are apt to change schools more often after they leave cyber charters than they did before enrolling.
"If traditional public schools were producing such results, we would rightly be outraged," the report introduction reads, in part. "We should not feel any different just because these are charter schools."

“A study released earlier this month by economics professors Thomas Piketty, Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman shows that since 1980, the top one percent has seen their piece of the pie increase from 12 percent to 20 percent. The bottom 50 percent of the U.S. population has seen their piece of the pie shrink from . . . wait for it . . . wait for it . . . 20 percent to 12 percent.”
How rich are the super-rich? You can't imagine
by Howard Gensler, Daily News Columnist  @DNTattle Updated: DECEMBER 30, 2016 12:16 AM
STARTING JAN. 20, it's going to be great to be unemployed or working-class, but in 2016, as in every year before it, it was great to be rich.  Odds are you got richer.  And if you were super-rich?
Ka-ching.  According to Bloomberg, the world's richest 200 rich people increased their net worth this year by $237 billion as of Tuesday - so there's still time left to net a few more nickels.
That brings the wealth of the top 200 to a staggering $4.4 trillion. Trillion. As in more than four thousand billion.  Tattle knows these are big numbers, and Americans are notoriously bad at math, but let's try to give them perspective.  Two hundred people, we can all agree, is not a lot. If you read Tattle on the subway, there could be 200 people on the train with you.
That $4.4 trillion number, however, is a big one.

How to Stop the School-to-Prison Pipeline for Girls of Color
Wednesday, January 11 at 2:00pm EST
RSVP Today! Schott Foundation's 25th Anniversary Celebration Webinar Series:
Black girls and other girls of color disproportionately experience harsher school discipline than their peers.  According to the most recent data released by the US Department of Education, Black girls are suspended six times more often than white girls. Punitive, rather than restorative, approaches to conflict often push Black girls out of school and into the juvenile justice system. Advocates, educators, and policymakers alike are looking for solutions to address school climate and safety with an intersectional racial and gender lens.  Join us for an exclusive webinar — part of our 25th Anniversary Celebration — as we discuss promising solutions with author and social justice scholar Dr. Monique Morris. Dr. Morris will highlight policy and system change strategies to address the issues she highlights in her groundbreaking book Pushout: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools (The New Press, 2016). She will be joined by her colleague Aishatu Yusuf to discuss the important work and research she and Dr. Morris have engaged in.  The discussion will be moderated by Maisie Chin, Director of the grassroots parent group CADRE in Los Angeles and a Schott Foundation Board member.

The NPE Toolkit: Stop Betsy DeVos
Network for Public Education December 16, 2016 by admin
The more we learn, the more we are certain that Betsy DeVos is bad for public schools and for kids.
When De Vos has to choose between quality schools and “the free market,” she chooses “the free market” of privatized choice every time. The best interests of children take a back seat.
And we know the DeVos endgame–shut down our neighborhood public schools, and replace them with a patchwork of charters, private schools and online learning.  We can’t let that happen and we need your help. Present and future generations of children are depending on us to act now.  We now know that some Senators have grave doubts. It is our job to make those doubts grow into active resistance to DeVos. Our senators are in district offices from 12/17 – 1/2.
Here are our three toolkits to help you do your part.
Toolkit 1. Call your senators’ offices. The toolkit with numbers and a phone script can be found here. It includes a link to phone numbers.
Toolkit 2. Send a letter to the editor of your local newspaper. You can find a model here.
Toolkit 3. Visit your senators’ offices. If you cannot get an appointment, hand deliver a letter. Our toolkit, which you can find here has a model to use, and directions to find local offices. If you cannot hand deliver it, send your letter in the mail.

Blogger note: Have an opinion about the appointment of Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education?  Call these three senators today.
1. Senator Lamar Alexander, Chairman, U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee
Washington, D.C. Phone:(202) 224-4944
2. Senator Toomey's Offices
Washington, D.C. Phone: (202) 224-4254
Senator Casey is a member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee
3. Senator Casey’s Offices
Washington, D.C. Phone: (202) 224-6324
Toll Free: (866) 802-2833

PHLpreK Now Enrolling!
Philadelphia Mayor's Office of Education
Did you know that quality early childhood education sets our children up for success? It reduces the need for special education, raises graduation rates, and narrows the achievement gap. These benefits ripple throughout our schools, neighborhoods, and local economy.
That’s why the City of Philadelphia is expanding free, quality pre-K for 6,500 three- and four-year-olds over the next five years. In fact, the first 2,000 pre-K seats are available now. Families should act fast because classes begin on January 4th at more than 80 locations.
Please help us spread the word. Parents/caregivers can call 844-PHL-PREK (844-745-7735) to speak with a trained professional who will help them apply and locate quality pre-K programs nearby.  For more information, visit www.PHLprek.org

Pennsylvania Every Student Succeeds Act Public Tour
The Department of Education (PDE) is holding a series of public events to engage the public on important education topics in Pennsylvania.  The primary focus of these events will be the Every Student Succeeds Act, the federal education law signed by President Barack Obama in late 2015. A senior leader from the department will provide background on the law, and discuss the ongoing
development of Pennsylvania’s State Plan for its implementation, which will be submitted to the U.S. Department of Education in 2017.  Feedback is important to PDE; to provide the best avenue for public comment as well as provide an opportunity for those who cannot attend an event, members of the community are encouraged to review materials and offer comments at http://www.education.pa.gov/Pages/tour.aspx#tab-1
Upcoming Public Events:
  
Wednesday, January 4- Quakertown- 5:30 pm- Bucks County Free Library
Bucks County Free Library Quakertown Branch
401 West Mill Street Quakertown, PA  18951
  
Tuesday, January 10- Scranton- 4:00 pm- Career Technology Center of Lackawanna County
Career Technology Center of Lackawanna County
3201 Rockwell Avenue Scranton, PA  18508

“The “Success Starts Here” campaign is a multi-year statewide effort to share the positive news about public education through advertising, web, social media, traditional media and word-of-mouth with the goal of raising understanding of the value of public education in Pennsylvania. The campaign is led by the Pennsylvania School Boards Association, but relies on the support of a wide variety of participating organizations.”
Share Your School’s Story: Success Starts Here Needs You!
Success Starts Here needs you! Show your support by sharing stories, using social media and applying window clings to all of your school buildings. Below are some links to resources to help you help us.
Not sure where to start? This simple tool kit will provide to you everything you need to get involved in the campaign, including ways to work with the media, social media tips, a campaign article to post, downloadable campaign logos, and photo release forms.
We know you have great stories, and it’s easy to share them! Just use our simple form to send your success story to be featured on our website. Help spread the word about how Success Starts Here in today’s public schools.
All school entities have been sent a supply of window clings for school building entrances. Need more? No problem! Just complete the online order form and more will quickly be on their way to you.

PASBO is seeking eager leaders! Ready to serve on the board? Deadline for intent letter is 12/31.
PASBO members who desire to seek election as Director or Vice President should send a letter of intent with a current resume and picture to the Immediate Past President Wanda M. Erb, PRSBA, who is chair of the PASBO Nominations and Elections Committee.

PSBA Virtual New School Director Training, Part 1
JAN 4, 2017 • 6:30 PM - 9:00 PM
The job of a school board director is challenging.  Changing laws, policies, and pressures from your community make serving on your school board demanding, yet rewarding at the same time.  Most school directors – even those with many years of experience – say that PSBA training is one of the most important and valuable things they have done in order to understand their roles and responsibilities.  If you are a new school board director and didn’t have the opportunity to attend one of PSBA’s live New School Director Training events, you can now attend via your computer, either by yourself from your home or office, or with a group of other school directors.
This is the same New School Director Training content we offer in a live classroom format, but adjusted for virtual training.
Part 1
·         Role and responsibilities of the school board director.
·         How to work with PSBA’s member services team.
·         Your role as an advocate for public education.
·         The school board’s role in policy.
(See also: Part 2, Jan. 11Part 3, Jan. 18)
Fee: $149 per person includes all three programs. Materials may be downloaded free, or $25 for materials to be mailed to your home (log in to the Members Area and purchase through the Store/Registration link).
Register online: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/6607237329490796034

PSBA Third Annual Board Presidents Day
JAN 28, 2017 • 8:00 AM - 3:00 PM Nine Locations Statewide
Jan. 28, 2017 (Snow date: Feb. 11, 2017)
Calling all school board presidents, vice-presidents, and superintendents — Join us for the 3rd Annual PSBA Board Presidents Day held at nine convenient locations around the state.
This is a day of meeting fellow board members from your area and taking part in thought-provoking dialogue about the issues every board faces.  PSBA Past President Kathy Swope will start things off with an engaging presentation based on her years as board president at the Lewistown Area School District.  Bring your own scenarios to this event to gain perspective from other districts.  Cost: $109 per person – includes registration, lunch and materials. All-Access Package applies.  Register online by logging in to the Members Area (see the Store/Registration link to view open event registrations, https://www.psba.org/members-area/store-registration/)

NSBA Advocacy Institute 2017 -- Jan. 29-31, Washington, D.C.
Join school directors around the country at the conference designed to give you the tools to advocate successfully on behalf of public education.
  • NSBA will help you develop a winning advocacy strategy to help you in Washington, D.C. and at home.
  • Attend timely and topical breakout sessions lead by NSBA’s knowledgeable staff and outside experts.
  • Expand your advocacy network by swapping best practices, challenges, and successes with other school board members from across the country.
This event is open to members of the Federal Relations Network. To find out how you can join, contact Jamie.Zuvich@psba.org. Learn more about the Advocacy Institute at https://www.nsba.org/events/advocacy-institute.

Register now for the 2017 NSBA Annual Conference 
Plan to join public education leaders for networking and learning at the 2017 NSBA Annual Conference, March 25-27 in Denver, CO. General registration is now open at https://www.nsba.org/conference/registration. A conference schedule, including pre-conference workshops, is available on the NSBA website.

SAVE THE DATE LWVPA Convention 2017 June 1-4, 2017
Join the League of Women Voters of PA for our 2017 Biennial Convention at the beautiful Inn at Pocono Manor!


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