March 31 2014

Published: 4/15/2014 9:34 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:
• HB 211 (Calendar bill) – Implementation of Emergency Provisions
• Budget update
• Anti-common core movie and clarification materials (Attachment)
• Superintendents’ March 28 Webcast recording (Attachment)
• Superintendent Evaluation Report ASSIST – Spring 2014 Support and Instructions
• PGES update
• CIITS update
• Audit Contracts for 2014
• Finance Officer Training
• 2013 Social-Emotional/Self-Help assessment data now available
• ACT Data Interpretation and Instructional Support Workshops (Attachment)
• Request for information on the use of results data in making determinations under Sections 616 (d)(2) and 642 of Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
• School Nutrition Association’s Annual National Conference
• The importance of music and arts education
• Kentucky Teacher -  Franklin County’s big CTE plans and HOSA conference spotlighted
 
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
 
HB 211 (Calendar bill) – Implementation of Emergency Provisions
Governor Beshear signed HB 211 today to implement emergency provisions related to school calendars.
The most immediate impact of HB 211 relates to amending school calendars for the 2013-14 school year. This legislation boils down the myriad of calendar requirements to just one for 2013-14 – each school district must achieve a minimum of 1,062 instructional hours. Please note that districts may still use up to five emergency hours provided by 702 KAR 7:140. Other emergency relief granted previously to a school district during the 2013-14 school year will be included as well.
 
The last day of instruction in the district is a local decision. The date of June 6 was established in the legislation as the relief point for districts that are extraordinarily challenged to meet the 1,062 instructional hour requirement. Certainly districts may have instructional time past June 6 – it is purely a local decision.
 
In a good-faith effort to provide the required 1,062 instructional hours, districts should consider the following strategies:

a. Lengthen the school day, not to exceed 420 instructional minutes per day.
b. Convert non-instructional days (spring break days, Memorial Day, professional development days) to instructional days; Election Day (May 20) may be used as an instructional day if no school in the district is used as a polling place.
c. Minimize non-instructional time (recess, passing time) during the existing day.
 
If a local district has implemented the strategies to reach 1,062 instructional hours and cannot do so by June 6, the district may request a waiver from the Commissioner for the hours that would occur after June 6.
 
For information on how to make a waiver request, please contact Kay Kennedy by e-mail at kay.kennedy@education.ky.gov or by phone at (502) 564-3930, ext. 4433.

Budget update
As you may have read in news reports, Kentucky House and Senate conferees met over the weekend to work out their differences over the next biennial budget. Overall, it appears to be a very positive outcome for K-12 education. Each chamber is expected to take action on the compromise measure today. Once the budget is approved and we have full details, we will be sharing those with you.

Anti-common core movie and clarification materials (Attachments)
Many of you are likely aware of an anti-common core movie slated to be released today. The Home School Legal Defense Association, a Virginia-based organization opposed to the common core, has produced a film called “Building the Machine.” The film’s anticipated online release date (which has changed several times), is currently set for today. The film implies that the common core was created through politics, misinformation and corruption. Using stark graphics and ominous music, the film features interviews with common core opponents arguing against the standards’ development and implementation – interspersed with misleading snippets of interviews from common core supporters. You can watch a trailer for the film here.
 
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Fordham have put together two documents (Rebuttal Building the Machine EMBARGOED.pdf and US Champber Development Process.pdf) (attached) that can be used to clarify the vast amount of misinformation that will be circulated as a result of the movie.
 
In addition to these two documents, the U.S. Chamber is in the final stages of producing its own common core mini-documentary. This will provide the pro-common core side and will also be ready sometime this week. In collaboration with organizations from all over the country, the video will feature education reformers, teachers, chamber leaders, and business representatives, showing the unified support for common core across generations, political lines, and states. We will send out the Chamber video when it is released.
 
In addition, the Kentucky Department of Education has multiple resources in support of the common core (adopted here as the Kentucky Core Academic Standards) on its website. Other resources include this Common Misconceptions page from the Foundation for Excellence in Education, or this Policy Points fact sheet from ASCD. Also, this illustrative video from the Council of the Great City Schools provides an animated overview of what the standards are, why they were created -- and how they help ensure students measure up with those in other states and countries.
 
Please feel free to use any of these resources with your stakeholders to help set the record straight on our standards.

Superintendents’ March 28 Webcast recording (Attachment)
If you were unable to watch Friday’s (March 28) Superintendents’ Webcast, we have recorded and archived it for your viewing here.
 
Topics included resources and suggestions for staff end-of-year professional learning opportunities on the Professional Growth and Effectiveness System, LEAD-Kentucky, a leadership development program through the National Institute for School Leadership, federal flexibility, and a legislative and budget update. The PowerPoint that was used is also attached in the event you need to print it out.
 
Superintendents, please remember to participate in the interactive survey when you watch the recording.
 
The survey will remain open until close of business on Tuesday, April 6.
 
Thanks for your participation.

Superintendent Evaluation Report for ASSIST – Spring 2014 Support and Instructions
In the coming days, superintendents are likely to begin completing their Superintendent Evaluation Report for ASSIST for the spring semester. The Superintendent Evaluation Report for the spring semester is due by June 30, 2014.

Remember that the purpose of this report is to ensure the superintendent is having conversations with
his/her board on all of these items to ensure consistent communication and collaboration.
 
The hyperlink below will lead you through a time-saving process relative to your submission of this report. Ginger Kinnard will lead the viewer in a step-by step set of instructions regarding the “copy feature” that will save you some time.
 
 
For all technical issues contact Ginger Kinnard at ginger.kinnard@education.ky.gov.
 
PGES update
New resources to support student growth goal-setting
New resources which lead educators through the process of identifying enduring skills, concepts or processes to support the development of Student Growth Goals are now available. The process directs participants to analyze standards documents using filters to identify enduring learning. While initial lists provide examples from most content areas, understanding the process for identifying what is enduring in any content area provides more flexibility and autonomy for focusing a goal. Additionally, understanding the process helps ensure congruency to academic standards.

After identifying the enduring skills, the next step is to dig into grade level standards to identify what proficiency means for students in that grade and what sources of evidence are available or need to be created.

The resources for identifying enduring skills are found on the Student Growth webpage, including notes to guide facilitators in supporting student growth in their district and/or school.
 
PGES webcast
The next PGES webcast is scheduled for 3 p.m. ET on Wednesday, April 23. The webcast will share information from the Student Voice Survey and address frequently asked questions from the field. The live webcast may be viewed via mms://video1.education.ky.gov/encoder3a. This webcast and all archived KDE webcasts can be found on the KDE Media Portal.
 
OPGES pilot
A pilot of the Other Professionals Growth and Effectiveness System (OPGES) will be implemented in the 2014-15 school year. Individuals who are tenured, not in their summative year and who have an Education Professional Standards Board (EPSB) certification in one of the following roles are eligible to participate.

• Library media specialists/school librarians
• School guidance counselors/social workers
• Instructional specialists (school level)
• Therapeutic specialists (SPL, OT, PT)
• School psychologists
• School nurses

All districts will participate in the pilot with a minimum of one person from each of the identified role groups.

Additional information and resources for the 2014-15 pilot will be available in April.

CIITS update
The new CIITS version 15.4, scheduled for release in April, will include changes in the Instructional Management System (IMS). Enhancements to the Instructional Management System (IMS) include:

• Equation Editor: updated characters/symbols
• Teacher Notes for Items/Assessments
• Anchor Papers
• Enhanced ScanIt Upgrade Process
• Item statistics in Item Central
• Authoring and student input in Latin, Italian, and Chinese (simplified)
• Improved EQUELLA integration for assessment items
• Support for newest item types on Android tablets
• Faster searching for tests, and overall test tunnel maintenance
• QTI updates
(Continued development work is in progress to support the additional multiple measures for supporting teachers to complete Professional Growth Plans and Self Reflections. Pearson has scheduled this development to be complete for the 2014-15 school year.)

Audit Contracts for 2014
The State Committee for School District Audits (SCSDA) met recently to finalize the contract package for FY13-14 and it has been posted to the KDE website at http://education.ky.gov/districts/FinRept/Pages/District-Financial-Audit-Contracts.aspx . The contract package remains largely unchanged from last year, but there are two significant changes. If a district wishes to contract with the same auditor it has used for 5 consecutive fiscal years, then the district will need to provide to the SCSDA a written explanation justifying why the district continues to use the same auditor. This written explanation (if required) shall be provided to KDE along with the audit contract on or before May 28, 2014 for submission to the SCSDA. The other significant change is that an audit contract will not be approved by the SCSDA if the auditor’s peer review has a fail rating without evidence of appropriate corrective action.
 
Please refer to the above web page link for the ‘Auditor Contract E-mail to Superintendents FY 2013-2014’ document that consists of additional audit contract highlights and reminders.
 
Please forward audit contract questions to Ken Smith at ken.smith@education.ky.gov or (502) 564-3846, extension 4442.

Finance Officer Training
KDE will be partnering with KEDC, GRREC, and SESC to offer Financial Reporting Workshops for finance officers and other district staff. The agenda will focus on year-end financial reporting issues including the annual financial report (AFR), annual independent audit, Redbook audit issues, fraud prevention, and available resources. KDE is also hosting an Auditor Workshop for school district auditors. District personnel are welcome to attend the Auditor Workshop, if desired. All workshops are free of charge. To register, access the online registration form at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1zei3E1wCUbbhHLdGRfR2KV6rqASegzGitC5lPuqvq74/viewform.
 
June 3 @ 8:00 am – 5:00 pm ET - Frankfort, CPT Ground Floor Auditorium (Auditor Workshop)
June 5 @ 10:00 am – 3:00 pm ET - Lexington, KEDC (Financial Reporting Workshop)
June 10 @ 10:00 am – 3:00 pm CT - Bowling Green, GRREC (Financial Reporting Workshop)
June 12 @ 10:00 am – 3:00 pm ET - Corbin, Corbin Center (Financial Reporting Workshop)
 
Questions regarding the workshops may be directed to Carol Buell at 502-564-3846, ext. 4438 or at carol.buell@education.ky.gov.

2013 Social-Emotional/Self-Help assessment data now available
2013 Social-Emotional/Self-Help (part of K-Screen) assessment data is now available in CIITS.

To view the assessment data, go to School & District Data > Pre-Formatted Reports > Standardized Assessment Performance, or click on the Standardized Assessment tab on the Student Profile.
ACT Data Interpretation and Instructional Support Workshops (Attachment)
ACT’s new Learning Management Team is offering Data Interpretation and Instructional Support Workshops across Kentucky. ACT consultants work with educators face-to-face to analyze data and identify implications for curriculum and instruction. The interactive workshop is designed to help educators improve student learning by using ACT solutions to make data-informed decisions.
 
See the attached ACT Data Interpretation and Instructional Support pdf for workshop overview and objectives. These workshops are being offered at:
 
June 16 OVEC
Location: OVEC
100 Alpine Drive
Shelbyville, KY
Contact: Tina Tipton at Ttipton@ovec.org or by telephone at 502-647-3533, ext. 266

June 18 WKEC
Location: WKEC Conference Center
435 Outlet Avenue
Eddyville, KY
Contact: Carolyn Pennington at Carolyn.pennington@wkec.org or by telephone at 270-809-6966
 
June 19 SESC
Location: SESC G.C. Garland Building
710 N. Main Street
London, KY
Contact: Johnda Bales Johnda.bales@sesccoop.org or by telephone at 859-625-6048

June 20 KEDC
Location: 904 Rose Road
Ashland, KY
Contact: Donetta Trimble Donetta.trimble@kedc.org or by telephone at 606-928-0205
 
Request for information on the use of results data in making determinations under Sections 616(d)(2) and 642 of Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
The U.S. Department of Education (Department) is requesting stakeholder input on how best to use results data (e.g., performance on assessments, graduation rates, and early childhood outcomes) in its accountability system under the IDEA. USED believes that the department must provide greater support to States' efforts to improve results for infants, toddlers, children and youth with disabilities (children with disabilities). We need to ensure that states focus not only on complying with provisions of the law, but also on improving results for children with disabilities. To provide feedback, please go to http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-03-26/html/2014-06730.htm. Responses must be received by April 25, 2014.

School Nutrition Association’s Annual National Conference
In response to several questions from school districts about attending the annual national conference this year, the Kentucky Department of Education’s Division of School and Community Nutrition (SCN) wants to provide some clarification. Attendance (and associated travel) to the School Nutrition Association’s Annual National Conference (Boston – July 2014) is considered an allowable expense which can be paid for from food service funding. This conference is an essential means for child nutrition directors and others involved in administering school-based programs to learn more about important developments that affect these programs, specifically the new Administrative Review; the proposed rule regarding Professional Standards for Child Nutrition Professionals; and the interim final rule regarding Smart Snacks in Schools. This conference provides the opportunity to discuss program issues and to share concerns with not only Federal policy officials, but also peers from other states. Accordingly, SCN encourages and supports that school districts attend this conference because the information being presented at this conference will be critical in learning how to ensure proper ongoing compliance with the Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act of 2010.
 
If you have questions or need additional information, please feel free to contact Deanna Tackett via e-mail at Deanna.Tackett@education.ky.gov.

The importance of music and arts education
As a former music educator, I have long advocated for music and arts education in the schools. A recent study conducted in the Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools confirms the importance of this kind of education to a student’s engagement, academic achievement and overall success. As you consider how to move forward with the data from your Arts and Humanities Program Reviews, I would urge you to consider the findings in this report and the other useful resources found on the Music Makes Us website.
My thanks to John Stroube, the executive director of the Kentucky Music Educators’ Association, for bringing this study to my attention.

Kentucky Teacher - Franklin County’s big CTE plans, HOSA conference spotlighted
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 March 31:
 
• Read about Franklin County’s plans to make its Career and Technical Center the best in the state.
 
• Students involved in HOSA Future Health Professionals recently gathered in Louisville for an annual conference that included some of them demonstrating their medical skills. KDE photographer Amy Wallot showcases some of the images from the event in her Photo Blog.
 
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.
 
Standards-based grading workshop
This summer the University of Kentucky, College of Education is sponsoring a two-day workshop on standards-based grading. Dr. Tom Guskey, Gerry Swan, and Lee Ann Jung will be leading the workshop, which will take place June 30-July 1 in Lexington. Please find more information at the website link: http://p20.education.uky.edu/summer-institute/.

Kentucky Writing Project professional learning opportunities (Attachments)
The Kentucky Writing Project has several summer offerings for professional learning. The first is June 26-27 when Carol Franks of KDE who will engage participants in a deeper look at PGES resources to support student growth goal-setting. She'll lead participants through the process of identifying enduring skills, concepts or processes to support the development of Student Growth Goals, digging into grade level standards to identify what proficiency means for students in that grade, and considering what sources of evidence are available or need to be created. The attached flyer has additional information. 12 hours of PD credit is available.
 
Also the Kentucky Writing Project has expanded the number of technology academies it is offering to meet the demand for these popular workshops. Participants learn to use technology in order to advance students' literacy skills. More information is available on the attached flyer.

Math and science teaching Award nominations due
The Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST) are the nation's highest honors for teachers of mathematics and science (including computer science). Awardees serve as models for their colleagues, inspiration to their communities, and leaders in the improvement of mathematics and science education. The 2014 Awards will honor mathematics and science (including computer science) teachers working in grades K-6.
 
Nominations close on April 15. Applications are due May 15. (These dates are extensions from the initial dates.) Nominate a teacher here.

There are upcoming webinar sessions provided by the National Science Foundation to assist applicants with the award’s process – Encourage the teacher that you nominate to participate.
Tuesday, April 1 at 4 P.M. EDT
Thursday, April 3 at 6 P.M. EDT

Deadline approaching for history conference proposals
The Kentucky Historical Society (KHS) is calling for proposals for educator presentations at the 2014 Kentucky History Education Conference, Thursday, July 10, 2014, at the Thomas D. Clark Center for Kentucky History in Frankfort. This year’s conference will be based on the 2014-2015 National History Day theme "Leadership and Legacy in History."

We encourage educators who may have innovative classroom practices (especially involving primary sources) to submit a proposal to present and share their ideas. If you feel you have a lesson or activity that would benefit other history teachers and would like to participate, please e-mail a short abstract (up to 200 words) and your resume to tim.talbott@ky.gov by April 11. If we select your proposal, you will receive notification by May 2. Accepted presenters will have their conference fees waived and lunch provided.

If you have questions or want more information, please contact Tim Talbott, KHS teacher professional development coordinator, at tim.talbott@ky.gov or at 520-564-1792, ext. 4428.

Scholarship helps high school students take dual credit classes
Kentucky high school juniors and seniors may apply for a scholarship to help pay for dual credit classes taken at a Kentucky college or university.
 
The Mary Jo Young Scholarship, named for a former member of the board of directors of the Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority (KHEAA), provides assistance with tuition and textbook expenses for up to two classes each semester. Scholarships can only be used in the fall and spring semesters.
 
To be considered, students must be in grades 11 or 12 during the 2014-2015 academic year. They must have at least an 18 ACT composite score or earn at least a 2.5 GPA during the 2013-2014 academic year. Priority is given to students eligible for free and reduced-price lunch.
 
The application is available on www.kheaa.com. Students must apply through their www.kheaa.com account. The application period runs through May 15.
 
2014 Kentucky State Police Trooper Island Scholarship Program (Attachments)
Attached (Scholarship Notificaiton ltr and Scholarship Application) is information about the 2014 Kentucky State Police Trooper Island Scholarship Program for high school seniors.
 
For more information, please contact Lori Hunsaker with the Kentucky State Police at Lori.Hunsaker@ky.gov.