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December 4, 2013
New from ECS
P-3 in the States
ECS conducted a scan of enacted policies from the 2013 legislative sessions to capture the ongoing work that lawmakers across the country are engaging in to strengthen their P-3 systems. The diversity of policies seems to demonstrate state policymakers are increasingly recognizing that the developmental supports a child receives in the earliest years provide lifelong payouts for both child and community. This report provides summaries of 38 bills from 25 states that illustrate the breadth and depth of P-3 policies enacted in 2013 legislative sessions.
Out-of-Field Math Teachers
Researchers used the National Center for Education Statistics' High School Longitudinal Study of 2009 (HSLS:09) to investigate the distribution of math teachers with a math major or certification and to show how HSLS:09 can be used. They found that 10% of 9th graders have math teachers with neither a math major nor math certification and that low-achieving 9th graders are much more likely than higher-scoring students to have a teacher without those qualifications.
What States Are Doing
R.I. Makes Dual Move toward Teacher and Leader Autonomy, Career Education
A 17-member working group meant to seek ways to provide greater autonomy for teachers, principals, and superintendents has been created by the Rhode Island Board of Education, the state Department of Education, and Governor Lincoln Chafee, the governor's office announced. Leading the working group will be Yanaiza Gallant, Milken Educator Award Winner, and 2014 Rhode Island Teacher of the Year Patricia Page.
Also in Rhode Island, Governor Chafee announced that up to $150,000 in general revenue funds would be used for development of two non-traditional apprenticeships: one for Computer Numerically Controlled Machinists and another for Cost-Estimators and Construction Managers. Apprenticeships could begin as soon as next summer and fall. Both programs were proposed in response to industry demand and were chosen through a Request for Proposals targeting existing Governor's Workforce Board Partnerships.
Michigan School District Awarded Whole-School Technology Grant
Michigan's Genesee Intermediate School District was selected in a blind competition to receive a $5 million grant to study the impact of school-wide technology with total digital access for students and teachers, according to an announcement by the state Department of Education. A cross-section of economically and geographically diverse schools will be selected to help assess the cost of creating digital learning laboratories.
Challenges and Lessons Learned from around the World
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) added five country profiles to its series on how various countries have responded to education issues: Chile, Finland, Mexico, Norway, and Turkey. Each country profile features highlights and sections on equity and quality, preparing students for the future, school improvement, evaluation and assessment to improve student outcomes, governance, and funding. Finland, for example, scores high in reading, science, and math while mitigating effects of students' backround on achievement levels. Teachers are required to have a master's degree that include research and practice-based studies. (OECD)
College and Career Readiness (CCR) Survey
This eighth annual 50-state report describes progress—and the lack thereof—in advancing state policies that will equip high school graduates with the knowledge and skills to succeed in college, career, and citizenship. While all states now have readiness standards, fewer than half require classes that teach those standards. No state has all four CCR prerequisites. An appendix allows state-by-state comparisons. (Achieve)
Redesigning Senior Year
Seven states and the District of Columbia have implemented initiatives for transition-to-college courses in high school: Florida, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia, according to this brief. The Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) is working with its 16 member states to embrace a college-readiness agenda and has developed model transition courses available online to everyone. Tennessee offers a bridge math course, which this year is expanding to 9,000 students who will then be eligible to take a tuition-free math class for dual credit. Since 2006, California students have been able to take an Early Assessment test; all those deemed college ready are guaranteed enrollment at any California State University and 70 community colleges. Nationwide, the least has been done for students with the greatest needs. (Jobs for the Future)
National Completion Rates
A look at six-year outcomes for the fall 2007 cohort shows that while overall completion and persistence rates remained steady, completion rates for different types of institutions changed slightly. Completion rates were up 1.3 percentage points for students who started at four-year public institutions and up 1.1 percentage points for students who started at two-year public institutions. These numbers do not include dual-enrollment students. (National Student Clearinghouse)
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