U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos announced the release of the Parent and Educator Guide to School Climate Resources. This guide, produced jointly by the Department's Office of Elementary and Secondary Education and Office for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, provides best practices and includes resources school leaders and teachers can utilize as they work to achieve a positive school climate, lower disciplinary issues and enhance school safety. A Q&A document, which is also posted on the Department of Education's website, provides parents and educators with useful decision-making frameworks and implementation tools, as well as best practices that school leaders can consider as they work to foster positive and inclusive learning environments.
Montana Office of Public Instruction is leaving up to the local school districts to define the term "ineffective teacher" (as required by ESSA) based on local evaluations. The state does not collect data on local teacher evaluations, instead, local schools are required by Montana law to develop and administer regular evaluations of their educator's effectiveness in supporting students' learning goals. Montana however, included the definition of "out-of-field" and "inexperienced" in the draft proposed ineffective teacher proposal.
The U.S. Department of Education (ED) has denied Arizona’s request for a waiver to that law to allow the state to implement its “menu of assessments." ED will withhold upwards of $300 million of Arizona’s school funding if Arizona continues to allow schools to choose their own standardized tests for students.
Grant Opportunity: The Office of Elementary and Secondary Education Announces FY 2019 Comprehensive Center Competition
The U.S. Department of Education has announced the fiscal year 2019 Comprehensive Centers program (CC) competition. The CC program provides capacity-building services to State educational agencies, regional educational agencies, local educational agencies, and schools that improve educational outcomes for all students, close achievement gaps, and improve the quality of instruction. The deadline to apply is Friday, May 24, 2019 at 11:59:59 Eastern Time.
Vermont Gov. Phil Scott signed an ethnic studies bill on Friday, March 29. The act proposes to require the State Board of Education to publish hazing, harassment, or bullying incidents, broken down by student group including ethnic and racial groups, poverty and disability status and English language learner status. A 20-member working group will advise the board on making student performance standards more inclusive, reviewing the standards and recommending updates and additional standards by June 30, 2021. The board then has a year to consider adopting ethnic and social equity studies standards into the statewide standards for student performance.