Daily postings from the Keystone State Education Coalition now reach more than 3050 Pennsylvania education policymakers – school directors, administrators, legislators, legislative and congressional staffers, Governor's staff, current/former PA Secretaries of Education, PTO/PTA officers, parent advocates, teacher leaders, education professors, members of the press and a broad array of P-16 regulatory agencies, professional associations and education advocacy organizations via emails, website, Facebook and Twitter
These daily emails are archived and searchable at http://keystonestateeducationcoalition.org
Follow us on Twitter at @lfeinberg
The Keystone State Education Coalition is pleased to be listed among the friends and allies of The Network for Public Education. Are you a member?
Six new cyber charter school applications before PDE; No cyber charter in PA made AYP for 2012
“Acting Secretary of Education Dr. Carolyn Dumaresq provided the Board a report of PDE activities. ….She noted there are six new cyber charter school applications before PDE; hearings on these applications will be held November 15 – 22”
Education Policy and
Pennsylvania Department of Education 2013
- 2013 Public Hearing Notice (PDF)
- 2013 Cyber Hearing Agenda 11-15-13 (PDF)
- 2013 Cyber Hearing Agenda 11-21-13 (PDF)
- 2013 Cyber Hearing Agenda 11-22-13 (PDF)
- List of 2013 Cyber Charter School Applications Received (PDF)
No cyber charter in
made Adequate Yearly Progress for 2012 Pennsylvania
By Mary Niederberger Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
January 23, 2013
Recalculated figures for attaining Adequate Yearly Progress on the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment exams for 2012 released by the state Department of Education show that the number of charter schools hitting the targets for AYP dropped from 77 to 43.
With the recalculation, no cyber charter school in
made AYP. Pennsylvania
Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/education/2013/01/23/No-cyber-charter-school-in-Pennsylvania-made-Adequate-Yearly-Progress/stories/201301230245#ixzz2kpBEleqb
Column: Keystone exams will fail to access
By ANDY DINNIMAN, Times Guest Columnist 11/14/13, EST |
Andy Dinniman, a Chester County Democrat, is state Senator for
Pennsylvania’s 19th Senatorial
District and minority chair of the Senate Education Committee.
Everyone supports higher academic standards and accountability in education. Though controversial, I believe the new Pennsylvania Core Standards (Common Core) are a positive step for education. However, in the false name of raising academic standards and accountability, the Corbett administration is attempting to assess these new standards through the implementation of the Keystone Graduation Exams – high-stakes tests that will result in higher property taxes, less classroom instruction, more “teaching to the test,” and the potential for a generation of students to be branded as failures. The Pennsylvania Department of Education and the Pennsylvania State Board of Education have proposed the Keystone Graduation Exams to the Pennsylvania Independent Regulatory Review Commission, which is set to vote on them on Nov. 21. I encourage you to join me in opposing the Keystone Graduation Exams. Here’s why.
Dinniman, Overwhelming Majority of
Call for a No Vote on Keystone Graduation Exams Area
Senator Andy Dinniman
November 13, 2013
WEST CHESTER (November 13) – State Senator Andy Dinniman and nearly every school superintendent in southeastern Pennsylvania oppose the proposed Keystone Graduation Exams and have asked Pennsylvania’s IRRC (Independent Regulatory Review Commission) to vote against the exams on Nov. 21.
Fully 58 of the 61 superintendents and all four intermediate unit directors serving students and taxpayers in Chester, Montgomery, Delaware, and Bucks counties believe there are “major challenges and concerns with the current implementation strategy of the Keystone Exams and Pennsylvania’s school accountability system,” according to the signed letter delivered to IRRC commissioners on Nov. 4.
In addition, many local school districts have passed resolutions opposing the Keystone Graduation Exams, including the
School District, Tredyffrin-Easttown
School District, Radnor
School District, and .
On Tuesday, the Coatesville School Board unanimously passed a resolution
opposing the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s general approach toward the
standardization of education. Haverford School District
The school districts’ concerns include new, substantial costs to local taxpayers in the hundreds of millions of dollars; the inherent unfairness of the proposed high-stakes tests; a complete lack of direction from the Pennsylvania Department of Education over how to implement and use the Keystone Exams; and perhaps most importantly, the negative impact that preparing for and taking so many required standardized tests has on public schools – many of which are performing excellently.
Common Core/Keystone Exams: The PA State Board of Education (Board) has submitted the final-form regulation entitled “Academic Standards and Assessment."
The Independent Regulatory Review Commission (IRRC) plans to meet and act on this regulation at our public meeting at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, November 21, 2013.
Regulation #6 – 326: Academic Standards and Assessment
Amends existing regulations to reflect
Core Standards in English language arts; address test security concerns; and
require students to demonstrate proficiency on the Keystone Exams in order to
graduate from high school. Pennsylvania
The agenda and any changes to the time or date of the meeting will be posted on IRRC’s Web site at www.irrc.state.pa.us. Please note that any comments should be submitted to the Board prior to the 48-hour blackout period, which begins at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday,November 19, 2013. Please provide IRRC with a copy of any comments submitted, as well. Please note that all correspondence and documents relating to a regulation submitted to IRRC are a matter of public record and appear on IRRC’s Web site.
For a copy of the regulation or if you have any substantive questions regarding the regulation, please contact the Board at (717) 787-3787. You can also download the final-form regulation from IRRC’s Web site using the following link:
A fourth one files request to expand
By Eleanor Chute /
Post-Gazette Pittsburgh November 15, 2013
In a district already expecting to spend $54.9 million on charter schools in 2014, Pittsburgh Public Schools has received applications from three new charter schools for next fall and a request to expand an existing one….. Charters are public schools open to state residents. Under state law, districts must pay for each resident who attends a charter school. In the case of
that amounts to $12,871 for regular students or $27,923 for special education
students. The proposed 2014 city school
budget already would spend about $1 of every $10 on charter schools, including
a $2.8 million budgeted for a new Propel charter school in Hazelwood that is
expected to open next fall. If all three
new charters were granted, the three schools could cost the district $5.4
million in the first year and $17.1 million in the fifth year. The figure could
be more or less, depending on whether some students are in special education or
come from outside the district or enrollment projections aren't met. Pittsburgh
Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/local/city/2013/11/16/3-charter-schools-planned-for-city/stories/201311160118#ixzz2kpBy5Dxu
to delay votes on key city school issues Pittsburgh
School closing, building sale among requests
By Eleanor Chute /
Post-Gazette Pittsburgh November 15, 2013
With one legislative meeting left before four new Pittsburgh Public Schools board members are sworn in, Great Public Schools Pittsburgh is asking the board to delay voting on three key issues.
The organization has started a petition on change.org, signed by more than 550 supporters, asking the board to wait until new members are sworn in to vote on:
* A contract with Teach for
provide 15 to 30 new teachers in hard-to-fill areas as well as to provide a
more diverse teaching pool. America
* Start of the process to close Pittsburgh Woolslair K-5 on the Lawrenceville-Bloomfield border.
of the Burgwin school building in Hazelwood for use as a Propel charter school. Sale
The petition states, "This newly elected board represents the largest board turnover in over two decades, and the new board, duly elected by
voters, should have its say in these important issues." Pittsburgh
Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/local/city/2013/11/16/Petition-asks-board-to-delay-votes-on-key-city-school-issues/stories/201311160121#ixzz2kpCt8eBk
Bill would allow public schools to eliminate or reduce property tax
By Barbara Miller Staff Writer email@example.com
(updated nov 13,
2013 at )
Never again pay a property tax bill to your school district?
While the idea, on its face, may sound enticing, taxes are going to fund public schools. If a bill in the state Legislature becomes law, it would be a question of which taxes, and how much of each, would finance public education. What’s known as House Bill 1189 contains no provision to alter the taxing options of either municipalities or counties, so, even if the bill passed, it would have no effect on real estate taxes levied by those governmental bodies. Sponsored by state Rep. Seth Grove, R-York, House Bill 1189 is an amendment to the Local Tax Enabling Act giving school districts the option of reducing or eliminating school property taxes. A co-sponsor is Rep. Pam Snyder, D-Jefferson.
State Responds to PILCOP Philly Nurse Shortage Complaint
On November 8th, we received a letter from the Pennsylvania Department of Education in response to the group complaint we filed on behalf of Parents United for Public Education regarding the shortage of nurses. In the letter, the state indicates that it will investigate the lack of nurses specifically related to students with disabilities by reviewing current staffing plans and conducting onsite visits. The Department of Education further states that it is not responsible for investigating this complaint related to non-disabled students and places that responsibility with the Office of Student Services. The state is also referring the matter to the Department of Health. The letter does not indicate if the department has any plans to meet with parents or advocates during its investigation. Please continue to report nursing shortage issues through www.myphillyschools.com to keep the pressure on the state. Click here to read the letter.
For more information on the complaints project, click here.
charter can stay open until end of school year New Hope
ERIN JAMES / The
Dispatch UPDATED: York 11/15/2013 07:35:50 AM EST
The fight to save
goes on. New Hope Academy
A state-level decision Thursday means the
charter school will not have to close by Jan. 15, as had been previously ordered to do.
Instead, the school can stay open until the end of its academic year. New Hope Pennsylvania's
charter school appeals board voted unanimously Oct. 15 to close and later issued
a 52-page report explaining that decision. The document is a castigation of
charter violations, academic failures and unethical financial practices at New Hope New Hope first alleged by the and now upheld by the
state. The appeals board altered its
original order Thursday with a 4-2 vote to grant York City School District 's request for a stay. That means the
order to close is delayed, not reversed. New Hope
Administrator returns to working with the students
KATHY BOCCELLA, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
November 15, 2013,
The light snowfall Tuesday reminded Darlene Davis of one of the minor, if inescapable, annoyances of her former job as a school superintendent. Every time it snowed, she would have to make the call: school or no school. And no matter which she choose, people would complain about it. "Some people say, 'I can't believe you closed'; others say, 'I can't believe you opened.' You can't make everyone happy," said Davis, 56, who spent three years as chief of the
Cheltenham School District in ,
a diverse community of high achievers whose two most notable alumni are Israeli
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Baseball Hall of Famer Reggie Jackson. So Montgomery County
decided to make herself happy. After rising to the top of her profession, she
retired last year to go back to the thing she loved most about education -
working with children - as principal of Davis . Widener Partnership
Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/education/20131115_Administrator_returns_to_working_with_the_students.html#sYHbxqjLGwvGUdrk.99
“Davidson, 51, has a reputation for being a conservative Democrat. Some Democrats are concerned about her votes regarding women’s health care rights and her support of school vouchers, according to Smith.”
Davidson could face a challenge in 164th
By Danielle Lynch,
Times County Daily 11/14/13,
If state Rep. Margo Davidson, D-164, of
Upper Darby, decides to run for re-election next year,
she could face a challenger in the primary election. Lansdowne Democrat Billy J. Smith is eyeing
the seat. Smith, 38, is an attorney who previously served on Lansdowne Borough
Council. He primarily handles criminal defense cases and was previously an
assistant district attorney in . Philadelphia
“But reading scores are notoriously difficult to improve. While math scores on tests such as NAEP have improved substantially since testing began in the early 1990s, reading scores have increased only by slim margins. Experts believe that’s because children learn math mostly at school, while they learn most of their language skills at home, much of it before they even enter school. Neuman said that means states wanting to make significant improvements in early reading need to target parents before their children reach school, or even preschool.”
States Insist on Third Grade
Pew Charitable Trusts Stateline By Adrienne Lu, Staff Writer
November 15, 2013
Educators have known for decades that learning how to read by the third grade is a critical milestone for children. Students who fall too far behind by the third grade rarely catch up.
One recent study found that students who don’t read well by the third grade are four times more likely to drop out of high school. Despite progress in some states, only 35 percent of fourth graders across the country are proficient inreading, according to the most recent National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), released earlier this month.
PSBA welcomes new heads of Government Affairs and Member Services
PSBA Press Release
11/15/2013 Steve Robinson, Dir. of
Publications and PR
John Callahan and Lin Carpenter recently joined PSBA as senior director of Government Affairs and assistant executive director of Member Services, respectively. "We are excited to have these talented leaders join us in public education advocacy. Their expertise will be a great asset to this organization," said PSBA Executive Director Nathan Mains.
- See more at: http://www.psba.org/news-publications/headlines/details.asp?id=6584#sthash.TlkBl8kJ.dpuf
Congratulations! Getting elected to the school board was the easy part…..
PSBA New Board Member Training: Great Governance,
! Great Schools
November 2013-April 2014
November 2013-April 2014
Academy’s New Board Member Training:
Great Governance, ! Great
You will need a wealth of information quickly as you jump out of the starting block and hit the ground running as a newly elected member of the board of school directors. New board members, as well as veterans who might like a refresher, will want to make the most of the opportunity to attend PSBA's New Board Member Training Program: Great Governance,
. Great Schools
EPLC is recruiting current undergraduate or graduate students to serve as part-time interns
EPLC is recruiting current undergraduate or graduate students to serve as part-time interns beginning January or May of 2014 in the downtown
intern will support education policy work including the Harrisburg
Funding Campaign. The second intern position will support the work of the Pennsylvania School Arts
Education Network. Ideal candidates have an interest/course work in political
science/public policy, social studies, the arts or education and also have
strong research, communications, and critical thinking skills. The internship
is unpaid, but free parking is available. Weekly hours of the internship are
negotiable. To apply or to suggest a candidate, please email Mattie
Robinson for further information at firstname.lastname@example.org. Pennsylvania
Join us as we celebrate their accomplishments!
- WHYY, 150 North 6th Street, Philadelphia
Invitations coming soon!
Invitations coming soon!
Fourth Annual Fundraiser and
Awards Ceremony, Pennsylvania November
21, 2013 6:00-8:00 PM
IBEW Local 380 3900 Ridge Pike Collegeville, PA 19426
Building One Pennsylvania is an emerging statewide non-partisan organization of leaders from diverse sectors - municipal, school, faith, business, labor and civic - who are joining together to stabilize and revitalize their communities, revitalize local economies and promote regional opportunity and sustainability. BuildingOnePa.org
Just announced: The Last Waltz Philly benefit for
Children at the Trocadero on
Saturday, November 30th Philadelphia School
WXPN The Key
5, 2013 | |
On Saturday, November 30th the Trocadero Theatre hosts The Last Waltz Philly, a benefit for
school children. Producers of the event Fergus Carey (owner of Fergie’s, Monk’s
Cafe, Belgian Cafe and Grace Tavern), Philadelphia
Dilworth (of Bonfire Booking), singer-songwriter Andrew Lipke, and musician and
producer Kevin Hanson. The Last Waltz, a concert by rock group The Band and featuring
numerous guest musicians including Neil Young, Muddy Waters, Van Morrison, Joni
Mitchell, Dr. John, Bob Dylan, Neil Diamond and others, was held on
Thanksgiving in 1976. The Last Waltz Philly will celebrate the music of The
Band’s farewell show all for an excellent cause. Bryan
Proceeds will benefit four Philadelphia organizations that focus on education: Parents United for Public Education, the Passyunk Square Civic Association Education Committee, theFriends of Horatio B. Hackett School and the School District of Philadelphia’s Music Education Instrument Repair Program.
The National School Boards Association 74th Annual Conference & Exposition April 5-7, 2014
The National School Boards Association 74th Annual Conference & Exposition will be held at the
Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in Our first time back in New Orleans, LA. since the spring of 2002! New Orleans
General Session speakers include education advocates Thomas L. Friedman, Sir Ken Robinson, as well as education innovators Nikhil Goyal and Angela Maiers.
We have more than 200 sessions planned! Colleagues from across the country will present workshops on key topics with strategies and ideas to help your district. View our Conference Brochure for highlights on sessions and focus presentations.
- Register now! – Register for both the conference and housing using our online system.
- Conference Information– Visit the NSBA conference website for up-to-date information
- Hotel List and Map - Official NSBA Housing Block
- Exposition Campus – View new products and services and interactive trade show floor
Questions? Contact NSBA at 800-950-6722 (NSBA) between the hours of 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. EST.
Friends of Public Education National School Boards
Participate in a voluntary network to urge your
Representatives and Senators to support federal legislation on Capitol Hill
that is critical to providing high quality education to ’s schoolchildren America
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