April 21 2014

Published: 4/22/2014 11:00 AM
As part of our effort to streamline communications and cut down on the number of e-mails you receive, here is a Monday E-Mail that combines several items into one communication.
 
Please read the Monday E-mail as it contains information about the following KDE-related items:

• Kentucky Core Academic Standards for Social Studies – Writing Team
• CIITS webcast archive
• CIITS update delayed
• Nominations for Joseph W. Kelly Award (Attachment)
• Professional Growth and Effectiveness System (PGES) featured on KET
• KEHP LivingWell Promise--Deadline May 1, 2014
• FY15 Tentative Preschool Allocations
• Revised Insurance Guide
• HB 211 (2014) – Calendars and Classified/Certified Contract Fulfillment
• Mental health training grants available soon
• Parent and community engagement framework
• Kentucky Teacher
 
Also, take a look at the items under the section titled “Items from Outside Agencies”.
 
If you have questions about the specific items, please see the contact information for each item.
Items from KDE
 
Kentucky Core Academic Standards for Social Studies – Writing Team
The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) extends an invitation to social studies experts across the state to provide support in drafting the new Kentucky Core Academic Standards for Social Studies. Plans for standards development call for a draft to be presented to the Kentucky Board of Education in the fall of 2014. At this time, KDE anticipates the need for approximately 30-40 participants representing diverse locations, grade levels and social studies content knowledge to move this work forward. The application deadline for this project is 4 p.m. ET on May 7. Finalists will be notified no later than May 30. Click here to apply. Please address questions to Karen.kidwell@education.ky.gov.

CIITS webcast archive
The archived video of the April 17 CIITS webcast and materials are now available at http://education.ky.gov/districts/tech/ciits/Pages/CIITS-Training.aspx. Please contact Maritta Horne, maritta.horne@education.ky.gov, with any questions.

CIITS update delayed
Pearson Schoolnet will not be upgrading CIITS to version 15.4 tonight as previously planned. A critical bug was discovered during the testing of version 15.4 and the Pearson Schoolnet team is actively working to resolve this issue as quickly as possible. CIITS will remain on version 15.3 until further notice. We will communicate the updated release schedule as soon as possible.  For additional information, please contact Christine Boatwright at christine.boatwright@education.ky.gov.

Nominations for Joseph W. Kelly Award (Attachment)
The Kentucky Board of Education is proud to announce the thirteenth annual Joseph W. Kelly Award. This award will be given to a businessperson who has offered outstanding leadership and service toward promoting school improvement and equity of educational opportunity for all Kentucky children.
 
We invite your nomination(s) on the attached form. Because nominations may come from both organizations and individuals, additional copies of the form may be made and distributed throughout your board/membership. Along with the enclosed form, an essay (500 words or less) describing how the nominated businessperson has further enhanced the educational opportunities for children on the school, community and/or state levels must be submitted.
 
The deadline for receipt of nominations is May 19 (close of business). Send the nomination form and essay to the Kentucky Board of Education (Attention: Mary Ann Miller), 500 Mero Street, First Floor, Capital Plaza Tower, Frankfort, KY 40601 or e-mail them to MaryAnn.Miller@education.ky.gov.

Professional Growth and Effectiveness System (PGES) featured on KET
The next edition of Education Matters, hosted by Bill Goodman, explores how the new statewide Professional Growth and Effectiveness System helps Kentucky teachers improve their professional practice. The program airs Monday, April 28 at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT on KET. The program includes visits to Marshall and Boone counties to see how schools are implementing the new system, which is currently in its pilot year.
 
Also on the program, Goodman leads a panel discussion with scheduled guests:
 
• Brad Clark, 4th-5th grade social studies teacher, Woodford County, and trainer for Hope Street Group and AdvanceKentucky
• Brad Darnell, middle school mathematics teacher, Marshall County
• Dr. Amanda Ellis, director, Next-Generation Professionals, Kentucky Department of Education
• Stephanie Winkler, president, Kentucky Education Association and science teacher, Mayfield Elementary School, Madison County
 
Education Matters is a KET production.

KEHP LivingWell Promise--Deadline May 1, 2014
To date, over 86,000 Kentucky Employees’ Health Plan (KEHP) members have completed their LivingWell Promise.
 
As the May 1st deadline approaches for members to complete their LivingWell Promise, KEHP wants to provide all the resources, which may be needed to assist employees with completing their Promise.  All KEHP members who elected either the 2014 LivingWell CDHP or LivingWell PPO must complete the HumanaVitalityÒ Health Assessment by May 1, 2014 to fulfill their LivingWell Promise. If the KEHP member fails to complete the LivingWell Promise by May 1, 2014, then the member will not be permitted to elect a LivingWell plan option in 2015. 
 
Two Easy Steps to Fulfill the LivingWell Promise: 
 
Step 1: Complete your HumanaVitalityÒ Health Assessment (HA)
1. Go to LivingWell.ky.gov
2. Click on "HumanaVitality Login"
3. Sign in or register (Note: The Humana username and password are different from those for KHRIS)
4. Click the "Get Healthy" tab
5. Click "Health Assessment" to answer the questions and receive your Vitality Age (Note: Takes about 15-20 minutes to complete)
Click here to view/print detailed log-in instructions
 
Step 2: Update your contact information 
 
Employees
1. Log in to KHRIS Employee Self-Service (ESS)
2. Click "Personal Information"
3. Click "Addresses"
4. Review and update your information, if necessary
 
Click here to view/print detailed log-in instructions
 
Retirees
Contact your retirement system to update your contact information:
 
Kentucky Retirement System
800-928-4646 
502-696-8800 
           
Kentucky Teachers' Retirement System
800-618-1687
502-848-8500 
           
KCTCS Retirement
859-256-3100 
        
Judicial Retirement or Legislators' Retirement
502-564-5310 
 
Additional Resources:
o See a list of frequently asked questions here.
o View or print a sample HumanaVitality Health Assessment (HA) here.
o Watch the Health Assessment webinar (Note: just register with your e-mail to view the presentation).
 
Still have questions?
Contact your insurance coordinator or call 1-877-597-7474 for Health Assessment information.

FY15 Tentative Preschool Allocations
FY15 Tentative Preschool allocations are available at http://education.ky.gov/districts/fin/Pages/State-Grants.aspx. If you have any questions about your allocations, please contact Karen Wirth at karen.wirth@education.ky.gov or Susan Ronca at susan.ronca@education.ky.gov.

Revised Insurance Guide
Updates have been made to the Kentucky School Districts Insurance Guide and the new version is now available on the KDE website at http://education.ky.gov/districts/FinRept/Pages/Finance%20Officer%20Training,%20Insurance%20Guidelines,%20Key%20Financial%20Indicators,%20Financial%20Management%20Calendar,%20Finance%20Newsletter.aspx.  The primary changes include additional information regarding procurement and agents of record and the addition of a procurement flow chart.  A version of the guide with revisions in red type is also posted on the website so you can easily review changes to the previous edition.

HB 211 (2014) – Calendars and Classified/Certified Contract Fulfillment
HB 211 (2014) as recently enacted by the General Assembly provides flexibility for school districts to adjust school calendars in order to provide 1,062 hours of instruction, or in the event that number of hours cannot be met, request a waiver in order for the last instructional day to occur on June 6, 2014.
 
HB 211 (2014) further states:
       (5) Notwithstanding any other statute or administrative regulation to the contrary, for the 2013-  2014 school year, school district certified and classified personnel shall complete all contract days by participating in instructional activities or professional development or by being assigned additional work responsibilities.
 
KDE has received several questions about this legislation and how it relates to contract fulfillment of classified and certified staff.  This information is being provided as general guidance in response to these concerns.   There are a number of options that school districts can utilize to provide time to count toward contract days:
 
a. Instructional minutes added to a scheduled day – If a district has added minutes to a regular instructional day in the effort to reach 1,062 instructional hours, added time can count toward a contract day for certified personnel.  For example, a district may have had a regular day set at 375 minutes but as of March 15, extended the day to 400 minutes.  That extra 25 minutes each day can count toward a regular day.  Since regular day was established at 375 minutes, it would take 15 days of extended time to make a contract day. 
b. Use of banked time previously established in the district – If a district has established a policy that the time in excess of 360 instructional minutes will count toward contract days for certified staff, this is a local decision.
c. Work compensatory time – classified staff may be assigned to work additional time that will count toward contract days as long as the total work time for a week is no more than 40 hours.  Duties assigned for the compensatory time should be commensurate with the employee’s regular job description.
 
In addition, districts are encouraged to consult with local legal counsel, prior to making any significant changes to contracts.
 
Mental health training grants available soon
Earlier this year, Congress approved $15 million to support the delivery of Mental Health First Aid training within schools and local communities. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) will soon release a Request for Applications.
 
As described in budget documents, SAMHSA will release a funding opportunity for Project AWARE, (Advancing Wellness and Resilience in Education), a program to increase mental health awareness and connect young people and their families with needed behavioral health services. Project AWARE grants will promote comprehensive, coordinated, and integrated efforts to make schools safer and increase access to mental health services. The only entities eligible to apply for these funds are Local Education Agencies. Funding announcements are posted here.
 
In Kentucky, the Kentucky Partnership for Families and Children, Inc. (KPFC) does have a certified trainer for Children's Mental Health First Aid that can partner with districts on these efforts.
 
For questions related to Mental Health First Aid, please contact Margaret Jaco at margaretj@thenationalcouncil.org.

Parent and community engagement framework
The U.S. Department of Education has released a framework for schools and their broader communities to use in order to build parent and community engagement. Across the nation, less than a quarter of residents are 18-years-old or younger, and everyone has a responsibility for helping schools succeed.  The Dual Capacity framework -- a process used to teach staff to effectively engage parents, and for parents to work successfully with the schools to increase student achievement -- provides a model that schools and districts can use to build the type of effective community engagement that will make schools the center of communities.
 
Kentucky Teacher
Kentucky Teacher, the Kentucky Department of Education’s (KDE’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 21:
• Learn how community connections and high expectations played a role in Beechwood High School being selected as one of five Blue Ribbon Schools statewide.
 
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 kentuckyteacher@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.
 
Grants for educators available soon from the Fund for Transforming Education
The Fund for Transforming Education in Kentucky (The Fund) has launched a new Innovation Initiative that includes training, consulting and other supports as well as an Innovation Fund. The Innovation Fund will provide grants to public school teachers, administrators and others to encourage the investigation, testing and scaling of innovative practices to improve results for all of Kentucky’s students.
 
The Innovation Fund will include three tiers of support:
 
• Research grants: the smallest in size, these grants will support research and investigation of innovative tools and practices that the grantee may want to move into a pilot stage.
• Pilot grants: small to mid-size grants that would allow the grantee to test innovative tools and practices.
• Scaling grants: the largest and most infrequent grant awards, these grants will support the scaling of innovative tools and/or practices.
 
In May 2014, Kentucky public school teachers and administrators will be invited to apply for grants. A Review Committee, made up of staff and board members from The Fund, education experts and leadership from the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) will review the applications and together create the list of final recipients.
 
For more information on The Fund for Transforming Education in Kentucky or the Innovation Fund, visit The Fund’s website at www.thefundky.org.

Annual KSBA school law conference to include board member training on superintendent evaluations, actions of 2014 General Assembly
KSBA's eighth annual Federal & State Law Update conference is adding a feature to enable board members to earn specific credit hours under the Kentucky Board of Education's new regulation on board training. The conference, May 8-9 at Lexington's Embassy Suites Hotel, in fact will have several firsts, along with the standard updates on federal and state education law, regulations, court cases and more.
 
On the agenda are:
* KDE Chief of Staff Dr. Tommy Floyd with the latest on the development of superintendent evaluation options for use by board members
* An overview of Kentucky's new certified employee evaluation process that will begin statewide next year
* Department of Community-Based Services Commissioner Teresa James on a new information sharing system between her agency and districts
* Federal resources to assist districts with behavioral health services for students
* New laws affecting K-12 schools passed by the 2014 Kentucky General Assembly
* Updates on state and federal regulations on elementary and secondary education, including rules tied to the federal Affordable Care Act
* Annual policy and procedure updates that will be required of local boards and districts
* Decisions by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the U.S. Office of Civil Rights
* Court rulings on K-12 cases
* Opinions of the Office of the Attorney General that impact Kentucky schools
 
Online registration for the conference is now available here. Onsite registration begins at 12:30 p.m., May 8. Registration is $250 for both days. $100 for May 8 or $200 for May 9 (includes lunch).  The conference runs through 4 p.m. the following day. Conference attendees may earn up to nine hours EILA credit or board member training hours.

Presenters sought for Kentucky School Boards Association institute
The Kentucky School Boards Association (KSBA) is seeking presenters for a limited number of workshops for the Saturday, July 12 portion of this year's Summer Leadership Institute.
 
Sessions are 75 minutes in length. Proposals should identify the target audiences of new or veteran board members and/or administrators. For an application to present click here.  All submissions must be received by May 9.

Anyone with questions about submitting a proposal should contact Kerri Schelling, KSBA's director of Board Team Development, kerri.schelling@ksba.org or by calling (800) 372-2962, ext. 1276.

The 2014 KSBA Summer Leadership Institute will be July 11-12 at the Marriott Griffin Gate in Lexington. Registration information will be posted on the KSBA website later this spring.

Opera outreach program available for fall shows (Attachment)
The University of Kentucky Schmidt Opera Outreach Program has announced that its fall touring show will be "The Adventures of Alice in Operaland" by Joe Walsh. Inspired by the classic tale of Alice in Wonderland, Alice journeys through the enchanted forest meeting some of opera's most beloved characters who teach her all about what makes an opera.
 
Children will learn terms such as Maestro, diction, dynamic terms, as well as the cultural background of opera and the many components that come together to make opera a special and unique genre, all while hearing glorious melodies from the world's most famous operas.
 
This program will educate and entertain K-5th grade audiences. Bookings are available from September 15 through November 27.
 
Call or e-mail now to book or sponsor a show! See the attached brochure for more information.
            Courtney Turay
            (859) 402-6946
            UKSOOP@gmail.com
 
For more information and a copy of the Teacher’s Guide, visit our website http://ukoperatheatre.org -- click on Opera Outreach.

Middle school math support for teachers
The Kentucky Center for Mathematics (KCM) announces the launch of MaRtI Middle, a FREE and new year-long professional learning experience. MaRtI Middle allows middle school educators to gain a greater understanding of how 6th grade students learn mathematics, evidence-based intervention strategies for use with students who are struggling, and resources and professional knowledge for identifying and analyzing student misconceptions.
 
Participants will:
• identify big ideas embedded in the 6th grade Kentucky Core Academic Standards for Mathematics and Standards for Mathematical Practice
• use instructional strategies to improve critical thinking, problem solving, and classroom discourse
• explore evidence-based intervention strategies that can be used to help struggling students
• analyze student responses and interpret evidence of student understanding and skills
• make evidence-based instructional decisions for advancing students’ abilities to fluently and flexibly deal with rational numbers
 
Participants should be Kentucky 6th grade educators and are expected to attend all eight days of the professional development (PD).  Teachers who work with 5th- or 7th-grade students are welcome, but the content focus will be on 6th grade. The teacher’s principal is required to attend two days of the PD for which KCM will request EILA credit.  Coaches and instructional supervisors are eligible to attend only if they do so along with a classroom teacher. Coaches/instructional supervisors are expected to attend all eight days of the PD.
 
Free registration includes:
• a total of eight full-day sessions:
o three days (June 23, 24 and 25) Summer Institute in Lexington led by Anne Burgunder (view Anne's biography here).
o five days— regional PD sessions led by a KCM Regional Coordinator—beginning fall of 2015. The exact dates and regional locations TBD.
• a wide variety of free materials for use in strategically and explicitly helping struggling 6th-grade students to master the content of the Kentucky Core Academic Standards for Mathematics
 
To register, fully fill out and complete the MaRTI Middle Participation Agreement form, and return to the KCM by e-mail, kcm@nku.edu, or fax, (859) 572-7677. Forms should be marked Attention: Mandy McDonough, Events Coordinator. Registration will be open through May 23.

Teaching American History Network Summit 2014
The Kentucky Educational Development Corporation is sponsoring its second Teaching American History (TAH) Network Summit, June 17-18 (8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. ET each day) at Eastern Kentucky University in Richmond.
 
These two days will contain vast information with a focus on instructional strategies, student engagement, technology, and historical content. We also are supporting the Kentucky Social Studies Networks from each cooperative in the state along with the C3 Framework (college, career and civic life for social studies state standards).
 
The suggested audience includes TAH Teachers, Social Studies Teachers, Language Arts Teachers, Special Education Teachers, and Administrators. Up to 12 Hours of Professional Development or 12 EILA hours will be available.
 
Register at www.tahnetwork.webs.com.  There is no cost to attend. For more information contact Clabe Slone, clabe.slone@kedc.org or (859) 248-5955.

Festival of Learnshops
From blacksmithing to bonsai, teaching with puppets to teaching with picture books, Program Review to papermaking – there is a plethora of choices for professional learning at the Festival of Learnshops, July 11-25 in Berea. This is NOT just for arts and humanities specialists.  Math teachers, science, teachers, social studies teachers, ELA teachers, practical living teachers, classroom teachers – get inspired by new ideas on how to integrate the arts (music, visual art, theatre, storytelling) across the curriculum. Have fun while you learn hands-on about the chemistry of glass-blowing or the history of broom making.
 
For a full list of classes and more information, visit the festival’s website. While several classes are highlighted for professional learning, certificates of participation and educational resources are provided with all classes.
 
For questions, contact Festival of Learnshops Co-Coordinator, Judy Sizemore, circuit@prtcnet.org, by phone, (606) 364-5831 or (606) 493-7052.