May 6 2013

Published: 5/7/2013 11:45 AM
Please read the Monday E-mail as it contains information about the following KDE-related items:
• Teacher Appreciation Week
• End-of-course tests now paper and pencil
• Twitter Town Hall May 15
• Correction: Districts of Innovation news release
• Insurance Guidelines
• Facility Assessments Update – Phase II
• 2013-2014 Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Program RFA
 
If you have questions about the specific items, please see the contact information for each item.
 
Also, remember to review the items from the Outside Agencies section.
Items from KDE
 
Teacher Appreciation Week
This is Teacher Appreciation Week, a time to say thank you to teachers for everything they do in helping students learn and achieve. Certainly, we at the Department of Education salute our teachers in Kentucky. The quality of our education system is only as good as our teachers -- which is no doubt one reason Kentucky is leading the nation in efforts to provide our students with an education that will lead them to graduate college/career ready. 
 
Perhaps Secretary of Education Arne Duncan summed up the contribution of our teachers best, “Teachers are central to every single community in America. Each day, teachers come to school ready to tackle a job that is critically important, extraordinarily complex, often joyful, and, at times, heartbreaking. In essence, teachers help others to become their best selves and I can think of no more important work.” 
 
Thanks to all our educators for their dedication and hard work on behalf of Kentucky students!

End-of-course tests now paper and pencil
Due to uncertainty over the ability of ACT’s online testing program to handle the volume of testing the last few weeks of the school year and in an effort to stabilize the end-of-course assessment program, paper and pencil tests will be administered in lieu of online testing. For those that had planned to test online, test materials will arrive in district offices by May 13. ACT is prioritizing the shipments based on each district’s last instructional day and some districts may receive test materials earlier.
 
The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) recognizes the continued frustration the EOC online testing system has caused for participating schools; moving to paper and pencil tests should minimize further disruption to test schedules and test results.
 
Since paper/pencil tests slow down return of results to schools, local grading may be affected. Due to the circumstances, any KDE requirements for using the EOC as part of the final grade are optional. Districts have 100 percent flexibility on how to deal with local grading. KDE will work with districts to complete EOC testing and on any potential impacts to accountability.

Twitter Town Hall May 15
The Kentucky Department of Education invites teachers, administrators, district staff, parents, students and other education stakeholders to submit questions for Commissioner Terry Holliday's Twitter Town Hall Wednesday, May 15, 4-5 p.m. ET. Questions can be tweeted both before May 15 and during the live event. Use the hash tag #AskDocH to send questions.
 
If you don’t have a Twitter account and would like to sign up for one, visit www.twitter.com. It’s a free service and also offers apps for smartphones if you’d rather follow along off of a traditional computer desktop or laptop.
 
Commissioner Holliday looks forward to answering your questions May 15.

Correction: Districts of Innovation news release
One of the agencies that will be providing staff for the cross-agency review team that will be evaluating Districts of Innovation applications was inadvertently misidentified in the Fast Five on Friday. Along with KDE and the Education Professional Standards Board, representatives from Appalachia Regional Comprehensive Center (ARCC) will also be on the application review team. A revised news release is available here.

Insurance Guidelines
The link below will provide information regarding laws and regulations on insurance minimums and best practice recommendations from the Kentucky Department of Education. The guidelines in this document are to be used for general purposes only. Recommendations from the Kentucky Department of Education are offered as supplementary advice to assist districts in meeting statutory and regulatory requirements.

http://education.ky.gov/districts/FinRept/Pages/Finance%20Officer%20Training,%20Financial%20Management%20Calendar%20and%20Finance%20Newsletters.aspx
For more information contact:
Renee Thomas
Division of District Support
500 Mero Street, 15th Floor
Frankfort KY 40601
Phone: (502) 564-3846, extension 4454
 
Facility Assessments Update – Phase II
KDE is kicking off the next phase of the Kentucky Facility Inventory and Classification System (KFICS) Project.  Parsons will again provide the third-party evaluations with their partner, MGT of America.
 
Districts will be scheduled for evaluations according to their 4-year District Facility Plan (DFP) cycle.  They will have the option to include all or a portion of their buildings in the assessment, primarily based on the age and relative condition of the buildings.  The annual KFICS State Report for the General Assembly will only include buildings assessed utilizing the Parsons process, including the 485 school programs assessed in 2011, in accordance with 2010 Senate Bill 132. 
 
Districts will contract directly with Parsons for the assessment at a state-negotiated cost.  While districts have historically contracted with architects for assistance with DFPs, this contract with Parsons can replace a portion of that fee. The intent is to complete all onsite visits within a three-month window to limit disruptions in the schools and to efficiently schedule the assessment teams.  However, if a district chooses to schedule an evaluation visit outside the annual assessment window, the district may contact Parsons directly and negotiate the cost of the assessment.
 
Thirty-three schools across eleven districts have been identified for inclusion in this phase of the project.  Parsons will be contacting these districts in early May to determine their participation as they prepare their DFP:  Anchorage Independent, Ashland Independent, Breathitt County, Carroll County, Clinton County, Hart County, Hickman County, Logan County, Nelson County, Scott County, and Shelby County. If a district chooses not to utilize the Parson assessment during the current year, they may schedule directly with Parsons in subsequent years in order to have the district’s facilities included in the annual KFICS report to the General Assembly.
 
For questions regarding this project, please contact Paige Patterson-Grant, Paige.Patterson@education.ky.gov, 502-564-5279.

2013-2014 Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Program RFA
Recent Federal legislation, Public Law 110-234, The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008, authorized funds for expansion of the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP) to all 50 States, the District of Columbia and Guam, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Elementary schools that represent a State’s highest free and reduced price enrollment are eligible to participate in the Program and are given priority for being selected due to their high need level.   The purpose of the program is to increase fresh fruit and vegetable consumption in elementary schools.
 
Kentucky has been allocated $2,780,123 for use during the period beginning July 1, 2013 and ending June 30, 2014.  The level of funds provided to any one school must be calculated by funding each student at $50 to $75 per year.
 
The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE), Office of Administration & Support is issuing a Request for Application (RFA) from elementary schools, schools containing grades PreK-6, or any combination thereof, to participate in the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program during the upcoming 2013-2014 school year.  The RFA is posted on the KDE Competitive Grants web page.
 
The application deadline is Tuesday, May 28, 2013 at 4:00 pm (EDT).
 
Kentucky Teacher - Service learning, spelling and grammar, teacher appreciation on tap
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 May 6:
• Read about how some Jefferson County teachers helped increase their students’ global awareness through a service learning project aimed at helping students understand the holocaust and more recent genocides in places like Sudan.
• While teaching spelling and grammar are still very much a part of K-2 instruction, they’re now more integrated than in the past. Find out how teachers are differentiating instruction and integrating the concepts throughout the curriculum in their classrooms.
• Education Commissioner Terry Holliday takes a moment to thank teachers for all their hard work and talk about upcoming preparations for a statewide pilot of the Professional Growth and Effectiveness System (PGES).
• Kentucky Teacher of the Year Kristal Doolin shares some pictures and insights from her Washington, D.C. trip for Teacher of the Year recognition ceremonies.
 
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.
 
TED Talks Education
Public television and TED, the non-profit organization devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading, share a deep commitment to addressing the high school dropout crisis. The TED Talks Education one-hour program brings together a diverse group of teachers and education advocates delivering short, high-impact talks on the theme of teaching and learning. These original TED Talks are given by thought leaders including Geoffrey Canada, Bill Gates, Rita F. Pierson and Sir Ken Robinson. TED Talks Education is part of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting’s American Graduate initiative. See all speakers and performers. The first program airs tomorrow, Tuesday May 7, at 10 p.m. ET/9 p.m. CT on KET and is repeated several other times on KET2. Check the dates and times here.

Education Matters Reminder
The May edition of Education Matters explores the Brigance Kindergarten Screen, an assessment tool recently adopted by the Kentucky Department of Education, and takes a look at how preschools, parents and informal learning experiences can help young children arrive at kindergarten ready to succeed and thrive.

Panelists include:
• Bill Buchanan, school readiness branch manager, Kentucky Department of Education
• Rick Hulefeld, chair of the Early Childhood Advisory Council and Executive Director of Children, Inc. in Northern Kentucky
• Sarah Hornback, director of family services, LaRue County Schools
• Jill Myers, kindergarten teacher at Cassidy Elementary in Fayette County
• Becky Nixon, director of preschool, Bellevue Independent Schools

The program, hosted by Bill Goodman, airs tonight at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT on KET. The full episode will be available to watch online after it airs.

Science standards professional learning opportunity
High school science, mathematics and social studies teachers are invited to apply for a 3-day workshop, Mobile Devices in Implementing the Next Generation Science Standards for High Schools in Kentucky, July 16-18, 2013 on the campus of Morehead State University.

Teachers will
• develop STEM lessons that incorporate new science and math standards
• learn how to use mobile devices to collect data and use them in the classroom to motivate students
• learn how to use Google Earth and other Google tools
• learn how to analyze Earth Systems problems of local importance
Teachers may choose to receive professional development credit or a stipend. For more information and to apply, please visit our website at http://cs.uky.edu/~jurek/UKHSsummer2013.sphp or email chanley@uky.edu.

Study in England and Ireland and earn graduate credit
Offered through Eastern Kentucky University and the Cooperative Center for Study Abroad, the course -- Medieval Civilization: Modern Myths and Historical Reality -- will compare modern conceptions to the reality of medieval life in England and Ireland. The course runs December 26, 2013 – January 10, 2014. Participants will visit medieval sites related to religion (Westminster Abbey, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Temple Church), government (Tower of London, London Guildhall) and everyday life (Museum of London, Museum of Viking and Medieval Dublin) in order to discover the realities of living in the Middle Ages.
 
The course instructor, Dr. Cynthia Resor, is a former high school social studies teacher. She holds a Ph.D. in medieval history and currently teaches social studies education courses for teachers at Eastern Kentucky University.
 
Application Deadline: Sept. 27, 2013 - $300 deposit required; $100 discount for applications received by Sept. 13, 2013. Apply online, http://ccsa.studioabroad.com/.
For more information contact: Cynthia W. Resor, Ph.D., Eastern Kentucky University, cynthia.resor@eku.edu or (859) 622-2165.

Vote for Kentucky Doodle 4 Google finalist
A 7th-grade Kentucky student from Pulaski County is among the finalists in the national Doodle 4 Google Contest. Savannah Lyle, won the state contest from more than 130,000 entries! National winners are based on votes in each grade category. If you’d like to support Savannah:

1. Click on the link doodle4google-vote for Savannah
2. Click on the blue button “Vote for this Doodle now!”
3. You may vote once from each IP address that you have
Voting ends May 10.  Good luck Savannah!

Kentucky Writing Project Academies
How is your school doing with the new literacy standards for content area and English/Language Arts teachers? Academies at Mt. Sterling, Brandenburg, and Louisville will focus on strategies developed through 3 years of work with in partnership with the National Writing Project, Literacy Design Collaborative and the Gates Foundation. Learn literacy strategies that teachers in the pilot projects report are improving student achievement in all content areas, at schools where reading and writing scores have been persistently low.
 
Registration fee of $100 per educator earns 18 hours of PD. Please see attached brochure for more information, registration and other professional development opportunities including technology, ELL, Grammar for Teachers, and playwriting.

Highway Safety newsletter
The latest edition of the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet’s weekly newscast, “KYTC Minute,” is now available.  It is posted on the cabinet's website http://transportation.ky.gov as well as its YouTube page http://youtube.com/kytransportation.