January 27, 2014

Published: 1/29/2014 9:15 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:
• Propane Supply Status
• School Calendar and Weather-Related Closures
• New custom interventions tab in Infinite Campus
• K-Screener data, a tool for improvement, to be released (Attachment)
• Statewide Groups to Provide Advisors for Operation Preparation 2014
• Active schools initiative helps students, schools improve
• CIITS Update
• 2014 Career Camp for Non-Traditional Programs RFA
• 2013-14 21st Century Community Learning Centers RFA Awards
• 2013-14 School District Working Budgets
Kentucky Teacher – World Language Teacher of the Year, CTE discussions
 
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
 
Propane Supply Status
The Kentucky Division of Energy Efficiency and Conservation has advised that if a school district is facing a situation where it will need to close schools due to a lack of propane, and it has contacted its propane supplier, and been refused delivery, then the school district should notify Dennis Howard, Attorney General’s Office at dennis.howard@ag.ky.gov or 502-696-5300.

School Calendar and Weather-Related Closures
The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) has received many inquires about whether districts must make up the recent missed school days due to inclement weather.
KDE has the responsibility to ensure that districts comply with the calendar requirements as set forth in statute, regulation, and current budget bill language. The guidelines are posted on the KDE website at http://education.ky.gov/districts/enrol/Pages/School-Calendar.aspx.
 
Under HB 265 (2012), districts are required to provide no less than 1,062 hours of instruction during the 2013-14 school year. In addition to the minimum 1,062-hour instructional term, the school calendar is required to include make-up days equal to the greatest number of days missed systemwide in the local school district over the preceding five school years. As a general rule, KDE encourages districts to provide the maximum instructional days and hours for the benefit of students.
 
Only under extreme conditions will a district be excused from the 1,062-hour instructional term. Once a school district has missed more than 20 regular instructional days systemwide and has scheduled to make up at least the first 20 instructional days missed, the district may appeal to the commissioner of education to use districtwide disaster days. KDE will do all that it can to assist districts in meeting the calendar requirements. We encourage every district to work within the current guidelines to comply with the calendar requirements.
 
During past legislative sessions, the General Assembly has made provision for the commissioner of education to approve a calendar waiver due to unanticipated hardships. Currently, the commissioner of education does not have waiver authority for the 2013-14 school year. KDE will continue to track and monitor all legislation during the current General Assembly session that pertains to education, including any dealing with the making up of missed school days.
 
Should you have any questions about calendars, please contact Cheri Meadows, cheri.meadows@education.ky.gov or Kay Kennedy, kay.kennedy@education.ky.gov.

New custom interventions tab in Infinite Campus
Kentucky statute and regulation outline the intervention requirements schools must put in place so more students will meet proficiency goals and college- and career-readiness benchmarks.
A new custom interventions tab in Infinite Campus is designed to collect intervention data for students in kindergarten through 12th grade. Schools can use this tab to track student-level interventions and the results of the interventions; there is a combination of required and optional areas within the tab. A statewide report on interventions will be produced annually. 
The custom tab will be available to schools and districts by the beginning of February.  Any school that is interested in piloting this new process will have the option to begin using it during the spring semester to record and track benchmark interventions. 
 
Beginning in the 2014-15 school year, the following schools will be required to enter information on intervention plans for specific students within Infinite Campus:

o Third year Focus Schools – All novice students
o High Schools – All seniors who did not meet ACT benchmark(s)
After receiving feedback from schools and districts, many changes have been made to the initial version of the interventions tab. To avoid duplicate data collection, the interventions tab is being merged with the current Extended School Services (ESS) tab in 2014-15. However, schools should continue using the current ESS tab for the remainder of 2013-14. Additionally, in 2014-15 schools will no longer be required to enter student intervention plans in the Individual Learning Plan (KY ILP).
 
Schools that already have an intervention tracking mechanism in place have the option to provide the same student-level detail on interventions collected through the tab in a standard Excel template each year.
 
The new interventions tab has been intentionally designed to reflect a variety of intervention systems. The new interventions tab will be placed into the existing PLP (Program Learning Plan) tab, allowing schools and districts additional functionality such as uploading progress monitoring documents and utilizing the contact log for intervention team meetings. This additional functionality is available but not required for school use. For more information on the interventions tab, please watch this video. A training plan is currently being developed at KDE to help schools and districts implement use of the new tab.  
 
Please contact April Pieper at april.pieper@education.ky.gov or Nick Easter at nick.easter@education.ky.gov regarding any questions or if your school wishes to pilot the new tab this spring and provide feedback to the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE). 

K-Screener data, a tool for improvement, to be released (Attachment)
On Thursday in a joint news conference, Governor Beshear will announce state level data for the common kindergarten screener administered last fall. Schools and districts already have their readiness data. Later this week prior to the news conference, District Assessment Coordinators will be notified how to access prior settings data. There are no plans to release the prior settings facility level data to the public but districts should use it to collaborate with child care providers in an effort to improve programs and school readiness. 
 
Attached is a sheet providing guidance for superintendents on how to effectively use the K-Screener data in their schools and communities.

Statewide Groups to Provide Advisors for Operation Preparation 2014
Several statewide organizations have pledged members to serve as advisors to 8th- and 10th-grade students during Operation Preparation 2014. These groups are: the Kentucky Retired Teachers Association (KRTA), the Grand Lodge of Kentucky (Masons), the Area Health Education Centers (AHECs), and the Kentucky National Guard.  Please visit the KDE Operation Preparation website for a local contact for each of these groups. We applaud these organizations for agreeing to volunteer their time to help the students of Kentucky prepare for their futures.
 
As districts are preparing for Operation Preparation, please remember that there are many resources on the KDE website that were created to help districts implement Operation Preparation.  Here are a few of the resources available: Toolkit for Schools and Districts, a Toolkit for Advisor and Recruitment and a Follow-up Toolkit. For more information regarding Operation Preparation, contact Jennifer Smith at Jennifer.smith@education.ky.gov .

Active schools initiative helps students, schools improve
Kentucky schools and districts are encouraged to sign up for the “Let’s Move!” Active Schools initiative, a physical education program that empowers teachers, principals, administrators and parents to create active environments that enable all students to get moving.  The program helps promote physical activity before, during and after school, and encourages parent and community involvement in helping students become healthier. Studies show that students who participate in regular physical activity also perform better in school.
 
“Let’s Move!” also will help support professional learning for school personnel as they work to align Comprehensive School Physical Activity Programs with Practical Living Program Review expectations.  Free resources and tools, including in-person trainings, program materials and activation grants, and direct, personal assistance from certified professionals, also are available by signing up at www.letsmoveschools.org. There is no cost.
           
The Kentucky Board of Education Health Subcommittee will officially recognize all Kentucky school districts that have made a commitment to the “Let’s Move!” Active Schools initiative at the Southern District American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (AAHPERD) convention Feb. 20 in Lexington in a session to be held from 5-6:30 p.m. Shellie Pfohl, executive director of the President’s Council on Sports, Fitness, and Nutrition (PCFSN), will be a featured speaker and will help present recognition certificates to participating district superintendents.
           
For more information on participation in the recognition ceremony Feb. 20, contact Jamie Sparks at jamie.sparks@education.ky.gov.

CIITS Update
• New Kentucky Core Academic Standards for science are now available in CIITS; science instructional resources from Discovery will be available by mid- to late-February.
• There are now many Literacy Design Collaborative (LDC) resources in CIITS.  Resources such as the LDC Guidebook, Module Specifications checklist, Literacy Matters video, planning templates, template teaching tasks, and other modules can assist teachers as they prepare for a module.
• New assessment results are now or soon will be available in CIITS.
o Access -- Available Now
o Kindergarten Screener -- mid-February
o 2013 PLAN/EXPLORE -- mid-February
• KDE will sponsor several one-day Curriculum Manager training sessions in March. A half-day will be spent on how to use the Curriculum Manager tool and a half-day working with participants on entering their district curriculum which they should bring to the training.
o GRECC:                      March 17 and 18
o Central KY:                  March 19

Registration will be open beginning February 10, 2013 through the Educational Development Suite in CIITS. Go to Search PD and type in CIITS Curriculum Manager. Then register for the section you want to attend.

2014 Career Camp for Non-Traditional Programs RFA
The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) is pleased to announce that the review process for the 2014 Career Camp for non-traditional programs RFA is complete. The Awards have been posted to the KDE website at the following link:
http://education.ky.gov/districts/business/Pages/Competitive%20Grant%20Awards.aspx.
 
We appreciate everyone’s participation in the grant process and hope that you will continue to seek and apply for beneficial grants for your regions, districts, and schools as they become available. Awards are contingent upon available funding and regions, districts, and schools meeting all programmatic and budgetary requirements. For information about regions receiving funding or any other budget related questions, please contact Karla Tipton at karla.tipton@education.ky.gov. If you have any questions related to the application process, please contact Jason Kendall at jason.kendall@education.ky.gov .

2013-14 21st Century Community Learning Centers RFA Awards
The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) is pleased to announce that the review process for the 2013-2014 21st Century Community Learning Centers RFA is complete.  Awards are posted on the KDE Competitive Grant Awards page, here: http://education.ky.gov/districts/business/Pages/Competitive%20Grant%20Awards.aspx.
 
We appreciate everyone’s participation in the grant process and hope that you will continue to seek and apply for beneficial grants for your regions, districts, and schools as they become available.
Awards are contingent upon available funding and regions, districts, and schools meeting all programmatic and budgetary requirements. A technical assistance visit will occur to address next steps to program implementation and to address any technical deficiencies or other questions related to 21st Century Community Learning Center grant application.
 
For information about the regions receiving funds or if you have budget-related questions, please contact Brigette Stacy at brigette.stacy@education.ky.gov.  If you would like copies of your score sheets or have questions related to the application process, please contact Jason Kendall at Jason.kendall@education.ky.gov.
 
2013-14 School District Working Budgets
All school district superintendents and finance offices are advised that at its December 2013 meeting, the Kentucky Board of Education approved the 2013-14 Working Budgets for all school districts.  Per 702 KAR 3:110, the Working Budget is a part of the official archives of the Kentucky Board of Education.  For more information, please contact Kay Kennedy at kay.kennedy@education.ky.gov .
 
World Language Teacher of the Year, CTE discussions
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 Jan. 27:
• Read how award-winning German teacher Pam Pennington uses storytelling to help her Scott County High students master a new language.
• Commissioner Holliday shares some findings from a report from Anthony Carnevale at the Center on Education and the Workforce at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., and discusses how it fits into career and technical education work being undertaken in Kentucky.
 
Make sure you don’t miss anything in Kentucky Teacher by signing up to receive emailupdates 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.
 
Governor's School for Entrepreneurs (GSE) application deadline extended
Due to school closings, the student application deadline for the Governor’s School for Entrepreneurs has been extended to 6 p.m. EST, Friday, February 7. Kentucky high school students in grades 9-11 are invited to apply for the three-week residential summer program. During the program, creative students, working in teams, will learn how to take an idea, turn it into a product or service, and develop a business around it.
 
GSE will take place June 22-July 12 on the campus of Georgetown College. There is no cost to attend. Students can apply as an individual or as a team of two or more.  To apply, students will need:
• a two minute video about their idea or desire to participate
• a completed application form
• two recommendations sent on their behalf
 
Visit the GSE website  for more information.

2014 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Awards
The President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, invites applications for the 2014 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Awards.
 
Programs applying for the award must meet all of the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award’s eligibility criteria. The deadline for application submissions is February 10, 2014. Please click the following link to view the application: http://www.nahyp.org/how-to-apply/.

“Capture the Earth” middle school digital photography contest
The Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet (EEC) has kicked off its fourth-annual “Capture the Earth” middle school digital photography contest for all Kentucky students in grades 6-8.
Judges will look for originality and creativity, photo composition, and a brief explanation of how well the photograph celebrates the beauty and diversity of Kentucky and encourages others to care about the state’s environment through stewardship and conservation.
 
EEC will accept entries until 4:30 p.m. ET on April 4. The winner will receive lodging for two nights at a Kentucky State Resort Park of the winner’s choosing with his or her family. Middle school students may e-mail one photograph as an attachment to Kidsphotocontest@ky.gov. Official contest rules are available at http://eec.ky.gov/Pages/earthday.aspx. For more information, call Ricki Gardenhire at (502) 564-5525 or e-mail Ricki.gardenhire@ky.gov.

Kentucky Outstanding Civic Education Leadership Award
Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes is seeking nominations for the 2013-14 Kentucky Outstanding Civic Education Leadership Award. The Award recognizes teachers, administrators and others who make notable contributions in promoting civic engagement. One finalist will be chosen from each Sweet 16 region, and the winner will receive a $500 award to use toward resources or equipment for his/her school or program. The deadline for applications/nominations is February 28.

Deadline approaching for History Teacher of the Year nominations
Nominations are currently being taken for the 2014 Kentucky History Teacher of the Year.  All nominations must be submitted on the Gilder Lehrman website at: www.gilderlehrman.org/nhtoy.
The History Teacher of the Year award alternates every other year between Elementary and Middle/High School teachers.  Only Middle School and High School teachers (grades 7-12) will be considered for the 2014 award.
 
Nominators are asked to provide contact information for themselves and information about their nominee, including a short, optional statement about why they are nominating the teacher. Nominations can be made by a student, parent, colleague, principal or other administrator familiar with the teacher’s work. A teacher can be nominated at any point during the year but must be nominated by February 1, 2014, to be considered for the current year’s award, if they are eligible.
 
All nominees will receive an e-mail notification with further instructions for completing the nomination with supporting materials. If the teacher is nominated in a year in which he/she is not eligible, they will receive an e-mail reminder when the online form to submit supporting materials to complete the nomination opens. 
 
For more information contact Tim Talbott at tim.talbott@ky.gov or 502-564-1792, ext. 4428.

National Early Childhood Inclusion Institute
Registration for the 2014 National Early Childhood Inclusion Institute May 20-22 in Chapel Hill, NC is now open. The Inclusion Institute, presented by the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute (FPG) at the University of North Carolina, is the premier event for people from all early childhood sectors to come together to learn, share, and problem-solve about inclusion for young children. Participants at the three-day conference will learn more about the latest research, practices, programs, and issues in early childhood inclusion, from national and international experts.
 
Every year, the Institute holds more than 40 sessions on a wide range of topics related to inclusion, including evidence-based instructional and interactional practices, partnerships with families, mental health and social-emotional development, assessment, self-determination,  professional development, and policy and systems issues.
 
Pre-institute intensive workshops are also available on a first-come, first-served basis.
 
To save a space, visit http://tinyurl.com/SaveYourSpotNow.
 
More information can be found at http://inclusioninstitute.fpg.unc.edu.

Creative Writing Contest
The theme for the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland’s 2014 creative writing contest is 100 Years of Change: Once Upon a Time … Before TV! Students can win prizes by writing an essay, play, short story or poem about what they think the most significant advancement has been during the last 100 years.
 
The contest is open to 11th- and 12th-grade students attending schools in the Fourth Federal Reserve District which includes eastern Kentucky (to see if your county is included click here for an interactive map of the district).  Each entrant must be under the supervision and direction of a teacher. Submissions are due by February 28, 2014
 
Additional information and examples of winning submissions from previous years are available at www.clevelandfed.org/learningcenter.
 
Contact April McClellan-Copeland at (216) 774-2756 or april.mcclellan-copeland@clev.frb.org with any questions.