Saturday, September 17, 2016

Urban Educator

Online Urban Educator Subscribers:

The September edition of the Urban Educatoris now available.

You can access the edition in PDF format, or open the document and turn the pages magazine-style.

Here’s the link to the PDF:

Here’s the link to the magazine format:

Henry Duvall
Editor






Friday, September 16, 2016

ESSA


NATIONAL UPDATE

Webinar: A Parent's Role in ESSA Implementation

 If you were not able to attend live, a recording of the presentation is up on ourYouTube page. Feel free to share this video and the PDF version of the slides with your networks. Both the recording and slides can also be found on our parent-friendly ESSA resources page at  PTA.org/ESSA . Webinar Recording Presentation Slides Questions, comments or concerns about ESSA in your community? Contact GovtAffairs@PTA.org.  

COLLEGE AND CAREER READINESS PARTNERS UPDATE


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Weekly Partners Calls:

Margaret Horn and Emily Alvarez from PARCC

Paul Peterson from Education Next on 2016 Poll Results

Eric Hirsch and Liisa Potts form edreports.org
·         Access the slide deck here.
·         Read the new ELA reports.
·        Read the call notes.                                                     
   
The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA): The Hunt Institute published The Every Student Succeeds Act: Opportunities and Responsibilities, an overview of the new law. They have released the second brief in the re:VISION series on ESSA, School Accountability Systems and the Every Student Succeeds Act.

  This brief focuses on important school accountability issues under ESSA, including:
•             What measures the state will use in their accountability systems;
•             How the required indicators will be used to annually differentiate the performance of all schools
•             How states will identify the lowest-performing schools and schools with consistently  underperforming subgroups.


Achieve is excited to announce the creation of the EQuIP Peer Review Panel for Science. 
The goal of the EQuIP Peer Review Panel for Science will be to identify high-quality lessons and units that are designed for the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). Building on the work of the EQuIP peer review panels for mathematics and English Language Arts, the science peer reviewers will evaluate lessons and units in their area of expertise and, collectively, will cover grades K-12. Any lessons and units that are determined to be of high quality will be publicly shared via www.nextgenscience.org so that educators and curriculum developers across all states and districts can benefit from these materials. Interested persons must complete this online application. (Application period is Sept. 6 -Sept. 23, 2016For answers to common questions, check out the FAQ: EQuIP Peer Review Panel for Science

INFORMATION AND RESOURCES

Studies Show Wide Support for High-Quality Education Standards
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According to two studies released last month, a strong majority of respondents to both surveys said they support high-quality educational standards and complementary assessments that allow results to be compared across districts and states. In PDK Research's study, Critical Issues in Public Education, nearly 90 percent of respondents said current educational standards were either appropriate or not rigorous enough. Nearly 60 percent of those surveyed also opposed allowing "opt outs" of state standardized tests. A recently released study fromEducationNext found similar results, with more than 60 percent opposing opt-out provisions, and 70 percent of respondents supporting the federal government's requirement that all students be tested in math and reading each year between grades 3-8, and at least once in high school.  

In that same EducationNext study, roughly two-thirds of respondents supported a requirement to use the same standardized tests in every state, while 73 percent of those surveyed want states to use assessments whose results are comparable across state lines. In addition, EducationNext found that when the term "Common Core" isn't used, support for the concept of high-quality, consistent standards nationwide increases by more than 15 percentage points.

Phi Delta Kappa International (PDK)

PDK released the results from the 2016 Poll of the Public’s Attitudes Toward the Public Schools. Among the topics covered, the need to improve family engagement in education and strengthen family-school partnerships is demonstrated by the findings of the survey. The findings from the poll come as states and school districts are working to create new education plans to implement the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)—the new federal law governing K-12 education. ESSA provides an important opportunity for states, districts and schools to improve family engagement and strength family-school partnerships as it requires that parents are meaningfully consulted in the development and implementation of the new education plans.

Education Week

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    Video link:  http://bcove.me/ew2q57ly


Education Commission SepSTEMber
As part of our commitment to raising awareness of STEM education through SepSTEMber, Education Commission of the States will be hosting a #ECSSTEM Twitter Chat on Thursday, Sept. 29 at 6 p.m. ETwhen you can interact with STEM experts, organizations and initiatives across the country. To join the chat on Sept. 29, just go to Twitter.com and enter #ECSSTEM in the search box.


Upcoming Webinars:

       Building Your Advocacy Family Tree: A Genealogy Approach to Advocacy Networking
The Congressional Management Foundation will explore how to coach local leaders to recruit allies in their communities. Sept. 19 at 1 p.m. EDT  Register now



http://e-news.edweek.org/ct/90833123:TgWtieYNr:m:1:1514695761:ABB658EFADDEABE42CBB434C03ED8D06:r

Content Provided by:
http://e-news.edweek.org/ct/90833124:TgWtieYNr:m:1:1514695761:ABB658EFADDEABE42CBB434C03ED8D06:r
Making SEL Meaningful, Measurable, and Achievable Under ESSA
As a leader in education, what non-academic factor will you be using under the new federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)? This webinar, featuring content provided by Committee for Children, explores how social-emotional learning (SEL) can be that factor. SEL has been shown to increase academic performance, decrease behavioral issues and suspensions, and improve graduation rates. Committee for Children (CFC) developed an evidence-based SEL curriculum used in 22 percent of all U.S. elementary and middle schools, and advocates for inclusion of SEL in primary, secondary, and career/technical education.
This live session will cover policy research about how SEL can be implemented and assessed. The chief academic officer of CORE Districts will present learnings from nine districts that have already implemented a school quality improvement index that measures growth mindset, self-efficacy, self-management, and social awareness.
http://e-news.edweek.org/ct/90833123:TgWtieYNr:m:1:1514695761:ABB658EFADDEABE42CBB434C03ED8D06:rGuests:
Chad d'Entremont, executive director, Rennie Center for Education Research & Policy, Mass.
Tia Kim, director of programs, partnerships, and research, Committee for Children
Michelle Steagall, chief academic officer, CORE Districts, Calif.
This webinar will be moderated by Carol Wood, advocacy specialist, Committee for Children

Thursday, September 15, 2016

CCSSI Update

CCSSI UPDATE
SEPTEMBER 15, 2016

STATE UPDATES

Thank you to the leaders from our CCSSI grant states who participated in a meeting in Tampa, FL: Rob Acerra and Rose Acerra from New Jersey PTA, Debbie Tidwell and Sheila Ragland from Ohio PTA, and Linda Kearschner and Cindy Gerhardt from Florida PTA, along with team leaders from AL, CO and NV. Each state had an opportunity to share all of the amazing work they have been doing, learn about ESSA and plan for future work.

In addition, we were thrilled to have Laura Bay, National PTA President and Jacki Ball, Director of Government Affairs attend our meeting. Jacki presented on ESSA and both Laura and Jacki provided great input and insight throughout the weekend.




Ohio PTA’s HQAP Committee participated in an event at the Mega Church in Cleveland, OH on August 20, 2016. Workshops were presented on various subjects by Esperanza, Mega Resource Center, Julie Billiart School, Ohio Internet Against Crimes and the Cleveland Police Department. Ohio PTA presented on College and Career Readiness Standards and Assessments and provided lunch, door prizes and PTA information to attendees. A big shout out to HQAP Team Lead Lisa Mack, CCSSI Team Lead Debbie Tidwell, Pam Bonnett, Jeanne Groetz-Shockling, Susan Hans, and Maria Lang for great work!


Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Schwan's Cares

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NPTA
Raise Funds While Providing Delicious Food for Your PTA’s Supporters!
 
Schwans-Porkchops.jpgThrough the Schwan’s Cares™ fundraising program, Schwan's Home Service, Inc., is proud to have helped donate over $11 million to local communities for education, nonprofit and youth sports programs. 
 
With the Schwan’s Cares™ fundraising program, your supporters enjoy a wide assortment of delicious foods while you earn funds for your PTA. 
  • Fundraising made easy—No order forms, we collect the payments and pay your organization.
  • Keep on earning—Earn 2040% during the first 45 days, then 5% for the next 90 days.
  • Delivery to the door—Schwan’s Home Service will deliver family-pleasing food to your supporters.
Bringing the best-quality foods directly to families is what Schwan's Home Service, Inc., has done exceptionally well for over 60 years.  
 
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This Sponsored E-blast Is Brought to You By
National PTA Headquarters
1250 N. Pitt Street
Alexandria, Virginia 22314
Phone: (703) 518-1200
Toll Free: (800) 307-4PTA
Fax: (703) 836-0942
E-mail: info@pta.org
DISCLOSURE: This email was sent by National PTA on behalf of our sponsor, Schwan's Cares. National PTA periodically sends information and discount offers on behalf of our sponsors to help our members get the best possible deals and learn about certain opportunities. Your contact information has not been shared with any third party;
PTA protects your personal contact information at all times.




Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Supporting Youth Opportunity and Preventing Delinquency Act of 2016

PTA leaders,

The U.S. House of Representatives Education and Workforce Committee will hold a markup of the"Supporting Youth Opportunity and Preventing Delinquency Act of 2016" (H.R. 5963) tomorrow, Wednesday morning at 10:00am ET.  You can watch the webcast here and read a summary of the bill here.  This bill reauthorizes the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (JJDPA). The JJDPA, which was signed into law in 1974 and last reauthorized in 2002, prevents children and youth from entering the juvenile justice system and protects those currently in the system.

National PTA has signed onto a letter of support regarding the bipartisan legislation and we expect the bill to pass the Committee tomorrow.  As you may recall, the Senate Judiciary Committee passed its version of JJDPA in July of 2015.  The House and Senate bill are similar but do have some slight differences. National PTA supported the Senate bill. See our press statement and blog on the Senate version. 

Please let us know if you have any questions.

Thank you!
Jacki

Jacki Ball | Director, Government Affairs
National PTA® 
1250 N. Pitt Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
P: (703) 518-1243 | C: (703) 405-5206  



Does Your Child’s Education Honor Their Uniqueness?

Source: National PTA One Voice Blog
Teacher helping kids with computers in elementary school
Jade and Alex do not check the traditional educational boxes. They are bright, young women with many gifts, yet each comes to the classroom with a disability that impedes core learning—for Jade, one that affects her ability to read, and for Alex, her challenge manifests in math.

Unfortunately, these two—and many like them—are in a one-sized-fits-all education system that is neither suited to meeting their particular needs, nor suited to validate and affirm their unique gifts and interests.

As a result, Jade and Alex have suffered tragic experiences that are all too common for students with disabilities: They began to see themselves only through the lens of their disability, internalized the judgement placed on them and experienced feelings of being demoralized.

The silver lining for students like Jade and Alex is that through personalized learning, we are more empowered than ever before to transform this one-size-fits-all system.

At the National Center for Learning Disabilities (NCLD), our personalized learning project has traditionally focused on students with disabilities, but we see common themes for every group of students whose experience in learning is unique from that of their peers:
  • Students must be understood for both their needs and strengths.
  • High educational standards must remain a constant, but the means to achieve those standards (i.e., where, when and how that learning happens) should be seen more flexibly.
  • Schools must ensure that students are attaining key skills and dispositions, like critical thinking and self-advocacy, that are necessary for their success in college, careers and civic life.
Personalized learning then is not an end in itself, but a means to achieving these goals. Like any other initiative, its success begins with informed, engaged and empowered parents. To ensure this success, we recommend four steps for every parent:
  1. Develop an awareness of your child’s needs and experiences. Your child is unique, research on children’s needs is constantly evolving, and let’s be honest, as a parent, you’re juggling a few other things besides your child’s school work. If your child has learning and attention issues, a great resource is Understood.org. Developed through a collaboration of 15 non-profits, it offers daily access to experts, in-depth information, expert strategies, and an active community of parents. It also offers tools to help with your journey, including a simulation of what your child experiences. In addition to Understood, at NCLD we have a number of resources on personalized learning and addressing the needs of students with disabilities, including a two-page resource for parents.
  2. Find out what your child’s school is doing around personalized learning. Once you understand your child’s needs, the question becomes what’s happening around personalized learning in their school and how does it impact your child? How are personalized learning plans integrated with your child’s IEP? This can be trickier than it sounds, as personalized learning can come under a number of labels: student-centered learning, blended learning, deeper learning or competency-based learning, just to name a few.
  3. Understand how your school will meet diverse needs in personalized learning efforts. It seems strange to say that approaches around personalized learning can be ill-suited for many students, but unfortunately that’s too often the case. Technology may not be accessible for students with disabilities, or educators may not trained to reflect on their underlying biases in interacting with these students or aren’t trained in engaging learning approaches that accommodate these students’ needs. One key step you can take is to ensure that your school’s implementation of personalized learning strategies aligns with principles ofuniversal design for learning, which ensures accessibility for all students.
  4. Maximize the benefits of personalized learning. One of the real benefits of personalized learning is that it provides educators much more valuable information on your child’s needs and strengths. That information isn’t just valuable for the teacher—it’s valuable for you! Be an advocate. Ensure that the school has systems in place and the educators have the tools that are necessary to empower you to be a partner in supporting your child’s success.
Personalized learning, with its focus on embracing the needs and strengths of each individual child, can be much more humanizing and accommodating to the many unique features our children bring to the classroom.

This potential can only become real when individual parents are prepared to be strong advocates for some of the key benefits of this system and it takes each of us asking the hard questions and taking the difficult steps to achieve it.

Ace Parsi is the personalized learning partnership manager at the National Center for Learning Disabilities (NCLD).




Monday, September 12, 2016

Top 5 Things You Need to Know


  • It's National Arts in Education Week! Join millions of PTA members across the country and in U.S schools overseas during National Arts in Education Week—Sept.11-17 as we celebrate student achievement, advocate for more arts and participate in creative activities. Learn more at PTA.org/ArtsEd.
  • Congratulations again to this year's 2016 Phoebe Apperson Hearst Award Recipients! Join the webinar on Wednesday, Sept. 21 at 2 p.m. EST and get all the info you need to be considered a School of Excellence. Remember, the deadline is Oct. 1.
  • Final reminder! Apply for this Thursday's Spanish and English webinar on "Supporting Student Success" with Univision Communications, Common Sense Media and the National Council of La Raza.
  • The resolutions committee is seeking resolutions for consideration during the 2017 National Convention in Las Vegas no later than Nov. 1. For more info, see our PTA Resolutions Toolkit.


National PTA and Scholastic Develop Parent Support Resource

SEPTEMBER 10, 2016

National PTA and Scholastic Develop Parent Support Resource
Learning Heroes, in conjunction with The National Parent Teacher Association and Scholastic, have released "The Super 5," an interactive checklist designed to help parents foster a deeper understanding of what their child is learning at school and how to best assist them at any grade level. The checklist features nearly 20 links to resources focusing on a wide arrange of communications issues, including the best ways for parents to define what "success" is for their child in the upcoming school year; how to have a highly effective parent-teacher conversation; and, detailed information on the standardized tests in each state. The checklist also features guides for parents to identify if their child is being bullied at school, and to help them better understand the social challenges that their kids face as they grow up in a highly connected and tech-savvy world. 

The checklist and guidelines also contain links to learning tools that are aligned to the curricula of specific grades in each state. The learning tools, also developed and compiled by Learning Heroes, don't just focus on mathematics and English language arts; there are also dozens of resources focusing on state-specific assessments, college-readiness measurements, along with the development of social and critical-thinking skills.

Studies Show Wide Support for High-Quality Education Standards
According to two studies released last month, a strong majority of respondents to both surveys said they support high-quality educational standards and complementary assessments that allow results to be compared across districts and states. In PDK Research's study, Critical Issues in Public Education, nearly 90 percent of respondents said current educational standards were either appropriate or not rigorous enough. Nearly 60 percent of those surveyed also opposed allowing "opt outs" of state standardized tests. A recently released study fromEducationNext found similar results, with more than 60 percent opposing opt-out provisions, and 70 percent of respondents supporting the federal government's requirement that all students be tested in math and reading each year between grades 3-8, and at least once in high school.  

In that same EducationNext study, roughly two-thirds of respondents supported a requirement to use the same standardized tests in every state, while 73 percent of those surveyed want states to use assessments whose results are comparable across state lines. In addition, EducationNext found that when the term "Common Core" isn't used, support for the concept of high-quality, consistent standards nationwide increases by more than 15 percentage points.

State Teacher of the Year Pushes Back on 'Common Core Myths'
Jemelleh Coes, who was honored at the 2014 Georgia Teacher of the Year, recently published an op-ed in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution  that defended Common Core State Standards, saying that "high standards set kids up for success." Coes writes that the standards in English are "at once specific and flexible," noting that the standards strike a balance between delineating a set of basic concepts that every student should know in order to be prepared for the next grade, while also affording teachers the ability to individually tailor their instruction to the skillsets of the specific students they teach. 

 Coes says the Common Core standards allow teachers like her to embrace the work of noted authors like Emily Dickinson and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, but not simply to do rote copying or basic analysis. Rather, she writes, the standards allow teachers to "help kids develop skills, like close reading, analysis, and argumentation, that will support their success no matter what college major or career they choose." The standards are designed to build off work from previous grades, no matter which school students attended in years prior, while providing teachers with data that helps them better understand which concepts need more reinforcing. "High standards in reading, writing, language, speaking and listening give kids the opportunity to acquire skills and knowledge early in life, and deepen them over the course of their time in school," Coes adds. "They provide opportunities for deeper learning and achievement than any previous set of standards."