April 15 2013

Published: 2/20/2015 4:09 PM
​As part of our effort to streamline communications and cut down on the number of e-mails you receive, this Monday E-Mail combines several items into one communication.
 
Please read the Monday E-mail as it contains information about the following KDE-related items:
• Statewide teacher and principal effectiveness system bill signed
• The Fund for Transforming Education in Kentucky kicks off
• College- and Career-Readiness Progress Celebrated
• Hope Street Group Fellows deadline reminder
• Operation Preparation Survey Reminder
• CIITS State Level Resource Agreement (Attachment)
• Professional Learning that meets your needs
• Change in Title II, Part A Teacher Quality Budget Submission
• Competency-based Education Survey
• 2013 World Language Immersion Planning/Implementation RFA Awards
• Vocational Education Payments
• Federal Reimbursement Files of health benefits
• General Information about Employers’ Responsibilities regarding health coverage (Attachment)
• Students asked to design a jockey silk for Derby (Attachment)
• Kentucky Teacher - Science and Social Studies Standards and other state board news; Legislative impact on educators
 
Also, remember to review the items from the Outside Agencies section.
 
If you have questions about the specific items, please see the contact information for each item.
 
 
Items from KDE
 
Statewide teacher and principal effectiveness system bill signed
During a ceremonial bill signing this afternoon, Gov. Steve Beshear once again showed his support for a system promoting educator growth and effectiveness in Kentucky. House Bill 180 clears the way for a statewide evaluation system to be used for all certified personnel starting in the 2014-15 school year and meets one of the main requirements for Kentucky’s Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) waiver. The legislation calls for multiple measures of effectiveness and supports professional growth. The bill’s sponsor, state Rep. and House Education Committee Chairman Carl Rollins, KDE staff, myself and several of our key partners were on hand for today’s ceremonial signing. KDE has been working with dozens of teacher and principals for the past three years to create the Professional Growth and Effectiveness System (PGES). The system, which is being field-tested in 54 school districts this school year, will be piloted statewide in the 2013-14 school year. As part of its continued development and per House Bill 180, the Kentucky Board of Education will create regulations governing the system.

The Fund for Transforming Education in Kentucky kicks off
A new statewide non-profit foundation to provide support for innovative teachers and schools officially opened its doors for business today. The Fund for Transforming Education in Kentucky (The Fund) will work with the Kentucky Department of Education to serve as an outside agent of change to provide necessary resources for teachers, schools and districts committed to positive reform efforts. During a news conference, Acting Executive Director Jim Wiseman announced The Fund will start by administering two grants from the Gates Foundation aimed at providing more opportunities for innovative teachers to 'network' and collaborate with each other. Also, The Fund will raise additional financial support from other foundations, corporations and individuals who want to support innovative schools.
 
College- and Career-Readiness progress celebrated
Today, Governor Steve Beshear and I teamed up with ACT, Inc. to celebrate Kentucky’s progress toward the goal of college- and career-readiness and for all students and recognize those who embody or advance the state’s commitment to preparing students for success. As part of its College and Career Readiness Campaign, ACT recognized Kentuckians who demonstrate exemplary college and career readiness efforts. They were selected based on a variety of criteria by a state committee representing business, education and government. Kentucky’s winners are:
 
• Citi, Workplace Success Award – Education is a major focus of Citi’s philanthropic efforts, business programs and employee volunteer efforts. Citi (Florence, KY), employs nearly 2,200 people in the northern Kentucky area.
• Hazard Community and Technical College (HCTC), Career Preparedness Award –
Many of HCTC’s incoming students live in poverty and do not meet statewide benchmarks for taking credit-bearing courses. Yet, the college retains students, promotes success and realizes transfers to 4-year institutions at higher rates than predicted from entering test scores.
• Murray High School (Murray Independent), College and Career Transition Award – Murray High School has 444 students and performs in the top four percent of all Kentucky high schools. The school had no dropouts last year, and graduates of the 2012 class have all successfully transitioned to college, vocational training, or the military.
• Devin O’Neil Morton, Student Readiness Award – A senior at Lafayette High School (Fayette Co.), Devin is an excellent student, an active member of the French Club, Beta Club and Mu Alpha Theta mathematics honor society.
 
Congratulations to all the winners! A national selection committee comprised of education and workforce development leaders will review all state recipients and select one honoree per category for national recognition. Recipients will be recognized at the ACT National Gala on College and Career Readiness in Washington, D.C. May 21.
 
Hope Street Group Fellows deadline reminder
Last week I sent an e-mail to you and to teachers concerning our partnership with the Hope Street Group and the Kentucky Teacher Fellows Program.  As a reminder, the deadline for applying for the fellows program is this Friday, April 19. Teachers may apply for the fellowship here. In the event you are asked, they do need to include a letter of recommendation that demonstrates support from their school or district administrator for participation in the program.
 
Operation Preparation Survey Reminder
By now, district Operation Preparation (OP) coordinators should have received an e-mail with a request to complete a short survey regarding their district’s participation in Operation Preparation. Please complete this survey by April 22. If you have any questions, or did not receive the e-mail with the link to the survey, please contact Amy Patterson at amy.patterson@education.ky.gov or (502) 564-4970.
 
CIITS State Level Resource Agreement
As many of you are aware, CIITS provides the ability to create and share materials at the school, district and state levels. However, in order to approve and provide materials for the state bank through CIITS, KDE must have a signed MOU on file for each participating school district. Therefore, each interested school district must complete the attached form and return it to kdeciitsmailbox@education.ky.gov or fax to (502) 564-9848. We would like to have all of these returned by May 1.
 
Professional Learning that meets your needs
As we move forward with our Professional Growth and Effectiveness System (PGES), professional learning will become even more important than it has been in the past.
 
Accessing professional learning tailored to your needs, your schedule, and the needs of your students is as close as your computer keyboard with PD 360 and Common Core 360. You can access these powerful online resources through CIITS – the Continuous Instructional Improvement Technology System. Videos that support the Kentucky Framework for Teaching – the foundation for PGES – are also accessible through the Educator Development Suite in CIITS.
 
To learn more about PD 360 and Common Core 360, including how to log in and start your professional learning, I encourage you to view this four minute video:
http://media.education.ky.gov/video1/On-Demand2013/PD360_intro_KY_3-22-2013.mp4
 
If you haven’t experienced firsthand the power of these professional learning resources, I encourage you to do so. Based on the feedback we’ve received from many of you so far, PD 360 and Common Core 360 are both proving helpful to you in implementing the characteristics of highly effective teaching and learning practices in your classrooms.
 
To learn more about using PD 360 and Common Core 360 for professional learning, follow these steps:
1. Log into CIITS at ciits.kyschools.us
2. Click on the PD 360 and Common Core 360 link on the left hand side of the page and automatically be logged in to PD 360
3. Return to this email and click on each of the following links to watch these three segments:
 
Learn and Apply http://www.pd360.com/index.cfm?ContentId=6888
Track Your Progress http://www.pd360.com/index.cfm?ContentId=6889
Network with Others http://www.pd360.com/index.cfm?ContentId=6890
 
Please address any questions to School Improvement Network, support@schoolimprovementnetwork.com or (800) 572-1153.
 
Change in Title II, Part A Teacher Quality Budget Submission
To assist districts with planning and budgeting for the 2013-14 school year, the timeline is being changed for submitting the Title II, Part A Teacher Quality Program budgets to a spring submission date of May 31, 2013.  This change will allow KDE to review and approve spending by July 1.  Districts will use the hold-harmless amount to complete the budget and make revisions once final allocations have been determined by the U.S. Department of Education in late summer or early fall.
 
The Division of Next Generation Professionals will be providing technical assistance through a recorded communication which will assist districts with budget completion and strategies for using funds.  This communication will be followed by a Lync conference.  Lync, a web conferencing tool, will allow for collegial conversations between KDE and district staff regarding strategies for recruitment, retention and improving teacher and principal quality.  Districts should set aside time on either April 30 or May 1 to participate in the Lync conference.  Additional information regarding the specific times for Lync sessions, the budget template, and hold harmless amounts will be forthcoming to all Superintendents, Title II, Part A Coordinators and finance officers in the form of an email.
 
Competency-based Education Survey
In May 2012, the Kentucky Department of Education received a technical assistance grant from the National Governor’s Association to explore educational policies and practices related to credit-based competency learning opportunities in Kentucky.  Competency implies the ability to analyze and synthesize information and transfer learning from one subject to another.  By contrast, traditional “sit-and-get” learning often leads to a focus on memorization and recall, rather than measuring higher order thinking skills.  Competency-based education favors a structure that creates flexibility and allows students to progress as they demonstrate mastery of academic content without regard to time, place or pace of learning. Competency-based strategies include online and blended learning, project-based and community-based learning, apprenticeships, after-school and summer school programs emphasizing application of knowledge and skills, etc.  This type of learning leads to better student engagement because the content is relevant to each student and tailored to their unique needs.  It also leads to better student outcomes because the pace of learning is customized to each student.
 
Several districts have implemented (or will implement) competency-based courses or systems in their schools, or in some cases district-wide.  In an effort to develop a comprehensive list of competency-based programs in Kentucky schools, we are asking each elementary, middle and high school principal to complete a survey about their programs. The information gathered from this detailed survey will help KDE identify where additional resources and training may be needed as well as provide models for districts interested in pursuing the competency-based pathway model.  In addition to this information, KDE will select a sample of schools to conduct site visits this spring.
 
Please follow the link below to access the survey.  As noted above, we would like to collect information from each elementary, middle, and high school through the principal.  Principals, please complete the first part of the survey even if you do not currently offer a competency-based course.
 
For more information, please contact Pat Trotter at pat.trotter@education.ky.gov .
 
2013 World Language Immersion Planning/Implementation RFA Awards
The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) is pleased to announce that the review process for the 2013 World Language Immersion Planning/Implementation RFA is complete.  Awards can be found on the KDE Competitive Grant Awards site.
 
We appreciate everyone’s participation in the grant process and encourage you to continue to apply for beneficial grants for your districts and schools.
 
Awards are contingent on available funding and districts/schools meeting programmatic and budgetary requirements.
 
For budget-related questions please contact thelma.hawkins@education.ky.gov.  For questions related to the application process or for copies of your score sheets please contact jason.kendall@education.ky.gov.  All other questions should be addressed to jacqueline.vanhouten@education.ky.gov.
 
Vocational Education Payments
The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) has been researching Vocational Education (Voc Ed) On-Behalf Payment questions.  As a result of the research, the Voc Ed On-Behalf Payments shall no longer be recorded as on-behalf payments because the districts receive these payments directly and are already recording these payments as revenue.  Effective for FY2012-13, Voc Ed payments shall not be recorded as on-behalf payments in the districts’ financial statements and MUNIS system - Annual Financial Report (AFR).
 
In accordance with 702 KAR 1:130, Section 2 “For those centers housed in facilities owned by a local board of education, twenty (20) percent of the funds generated by FTE shall be transferred to that local district for retirement of debt service and building maintenance.”  KDE pays 20 percent of SEEK funds directly to Kentucky school districts that own an Area Technology Center (ATC).  These funds are paid to those districts in two payments within the fiscal year.  KDE does not make these payments to a third party on-behalf of the districts. 
 
The Division of District Support will be providing additional ATC guidance to the district recipients regarding the restrictions on how the SEEK funds shall be expended based on KRS 151B.025, Section 5 and 702 KAR 1:130, Section 2 and what project code will need to be used in order to track these funds more efficiently.  This guidance will be included in the May/June 2013 Finance Newsletter.
 
Please forward Voc Ed questions to Gail Cox at gail.cox@education.ky.gov or 502-564-3846.
 
Federal Reimbursement Files of health benefits
The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) has found a couple of isolated incidences where the 2013 health insurance rates were pulled into the December 2012 federal reimbursement file.  This situation may have occurred due to the timing of when the December 2012 federal reimbursement file was created in relation to when the 2013 open enrollment file was imported.  KDE is asking that the districts review their December 2012 federal reimbursement files to ensure that the correct 2012 rates were reimbursed for health insurance.  If 2013 rates are found in the 2012 files, the districts should adjust their next federal reimbursement file for any overpayments as soon as possible.  Please refer to the ‘Generate and Update Federal Reimbursement Files Dated 4-5-13’ document located on the On-Behalf Payments webpage under the Federal Reimbursement of Health Benefits On-Behalf Payments section.  The document provides instructions on how to make one-time adjustments to current rates.
 
If you have any questions, please contact Gail Cox at gail.cox@education.ky.gov or Melissa Sullivan at Melissa.sullivan@educaiton.ky.gov or by phone at 502-564-3846.
 
General Information about Employers’ Responsibilities regarding health coverage
The federal Affordable Care Act (ACA) amended the Internal Revenue Code to add provisions regarding the “shared responsibility for employers regarding health coverage.”  These added provisions are sometimes called the “Employer Shared Responsibility” or the “Employer Play or Pay Mandate.”  The attachment provides general background information about this subject for employers, such as school boards; however, employers should not rely solely on this information in making decisions.  Instead, this information and the relevant law should be reviewed by each district’s legal and human resources staff, to determine how to start appropriately planning for such considerations, if these requirements apply in a particular district.
 
Students asked to design a jockey silk for Derby
Each year the Governor’s Office strives to involve Kentucky students in Derby festivities. In an effort to involve the arts through advanced technology, Governor and Mrs. Beshear are asking middle and high school students to digitally design a jockey silk image (see attachment) so it can be electronically displayed and promoted on 2013 Derby websites.
 
The jockey silk may include colors, insignias and/or other watermarks of the artists’ choice, but each artist must include a description of how and why the design way chosen and what the various shapes and colors represent. This may be done by providing a brief paragraph below the jockey silk design.
 
This project may be completed by a class, a team of students, a school club or organization, or individual students. Each design should include the student name(s), school and school district and a description of the project design. Students should think about including the following:
• Colors (why specific colors are chosen)
• Pattern
• Fabric
• Design (the cut and shape, fastening)
• Crest (representative design associated with a fictitious horse farm, organization or corporation)
• Properties (weight, cool, warmth, waterproof)
 
Completed jockey silk designs should be returned to Donna Melton, at the Kentucky Department of Education, donna.melton@education.ky.gov, by May 1.
 
Kentucky Teacher - Science and Social Studies Standards and other state board news; Legislative impact on educators
Kentucky Teacher, the Kentucky Department of Education’s award-winning online publication, is the place to go to stay abreast of what is happening in Kentucky’s public schools. Kentucky Teacher includes education news, feature articles that highlight successful classroom practice, helpful resources and more.
 
Here’s a look at what’s coming in Kentucky Teacher the week of April 15:
• The Kentucky Board of Education covered a lot of ground at its regular meeting last week. Read about what the board did and said when it comes to new science and social studies standards, raising the compulsory attendance age and increasing Advanced Placement opportunities for Kentucky students.
• KDE legislative liaison Tracy Goff Herman gives the run down on what bills passed during the 2013 legislative session and what that means for Kentucky educators.
 
Make sure you don’t miss anything in Kentucky Teacher by signing up to receive e-mail updates whenever new stories or features are added. Rest assured, we won’t share your e-mail address.
We want to hear from you too, so send your comments, feedback or story suggestions to us at kyteacher@education.ky.gov or post your comments online.
 
Kentucky Teacher is produced by KDE’s Division of Communications.
 
Items from Outside Agencies
 
PLEASE NOTE: Inclusion of items in this section does not constitute endorsement by the Kentucky Department of Education or the Commissioner of Education.
 
KSBA’s 7th Annual Federal & State Law Update:  Impact on Your School District Conference
Register for KSBA’s upcoming Annual Federal & State Law Update: Impact on Your School District Conference.  It will be held May 10 at the Embassy Suites in Lexington. Hot topics this year include school safety; the new Kentucky restraint and seclusion regulation; and school board and administrative financial oversight recommendations.
 
Hear from the Director of the Kentucky Center for School Safety on measures for making the schools safer.  Learn more about how to manage your financial oversight responsibilities from a school board attorney and former superintendent.  Hear about the new requirements concerning restraint or seclusion of students.  Find out about new policy provisions required by state and federal law.
 
Experienced school law attorneys, policy consultants, and governmental relations staff have a wealth of crucial information to share with you!
 
Registration is available on the KSBA website at: http://www.ksba.org/protected/EventView.aspx?id=7GP0BUB2 .
 
Or contact Jolene Shearer by phone at 502-783-0060 or by email at jolene.shearer@ksba.org.
 
2013 Student Art Contest: World-Class Education
The Kentucky Association of School Administrators (KASA) is proud to announce its first Student Art Contest. The contest asks students to use their creative skills to create a mural designed around the theme “Giving Our Kids a World-Class Education.”
 
Students should submit art work to their school principal, who will select one piece per age group, regardless of whether it is an individual or group submission, per school to enter in the contest. If your school has students in more than one age category, you can submit more than one art piece.
 
Principals should submit the artwork to KASA before May 13. Please encourage your students to participate in the contest. Your support will help Kentucky students to think more closely about the impact a world class education can have on their school communities.
 
 
6th Annual KCEE Life Fundamental$ Summit
The KCEE Life Fundamental$ Summit will be held June 19-20, at the Holiday Inn Hurstbourne in Louisville and is an opportunity for teachers to learn economic and/or financial concepts that need to be taught, based on the Standards and Program Review requirements of Senate Bill 1.
Learning tracks will be for grade levels K-3, 4-5, 6-8 and 9-12 with overlapping of grades where appropriate.  Topics covered include: financial literacy, consumerism, economics, entrepreneurship, and personal financial knowledge. Teachers will be introduced to and receive free classroom resources and learn best practices. Registration is $60 and if teachers register by April 30, early bird registration is only $40. For more information, contact, Susan Sandage susan@econ.org at the Kentucky Council on Economic Education.

Kentucky Director of Pupil Personnel of the Year Award
Each year, the Kentucky Directors of Pupil Personnel (KDPP) present the “Kentucky DPP of the Year” award to recognize an outstanding educational leader who exhibits exemplary professionalism, leadership, and commitment while enhancing the effectiveness of the KDPP organization. All active members of KDPP are eligible. The recipient is selected by a committee of the past president’s regional KDPP membership. (No DPP from that region is eligible for the award that year.) The award winner is recognized at the annual KDPP Fall Institute in September. KDPP will provide a $500 scholarship to a graduate of the recipient’s school district (criteria to be determined by the recipient and his/her district). All nominations must be submitted on the official nomination form on or before April 30.
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