Advocacy Update

Learn How Investing in Educators Can Support Student Success

On August 28, NASSP will be co-hosting a webinar with several other national education organizations titled, “How Investing in Teacher and Leader Professional Development Can Support Student Success.” During this webinar, researchers will share findings from a new review on professional development that improves students’ academic outcomes. The Learning Policy Institute reviewed 35 methodologically rigorous studies and identified seven key common elements of effective professional development. States and districts can use these findings to design effective professional learning programs. Panelists will also discuss promising, evidence-based investments in school leadership including those that take advantage of the optional Title II, Part A leadership funding set-aside.

You can register for the event here.

The 2018 Advocacy Conference Has Been Announced!

Have you ever wondered how you can serve your students beyond your school walls? Let us show you how at the 2018 Advocacy Conference! During this event, educators will learn effective strategies for influencing legislators. You will also have a chance to test these strategies out by meeting directly with members of Congress and their staff on Capitol Hill. Best of all, registration for the conference is free!

The conference will take place March 19–21 at the Key Bridge Marriott in Arlington, VA. For more information, please contact Zach Scott, the NASSP manager of advocacy.

 

Inside the Beltway

What’s Happening in Washington?

The halls of Congress are silent as members have departed Capitol Hill for the summer recess. Members will return on September 5 with quite a full schedule, including tax reform and passing an FY 2018 budget.

In the meantime, the Department of Education (ED) is still reviewing and providing feedback on state ESSA plans. In the last two weeks, ED posted feedback for the Washington, D.C., Illinois, Arizona, Connecticut, and Vermont plans. ED also sent a letter to the Michigan Department of Education informing them that their plan was too incomplete for a proper review. Lastly, ED did approve three plans last week for Nevada, New Jersey, and New Mexico. Including Delaware’s plan, which was approved at an earlier date, the number of approved plans is now four.

Why Should Principals Care?

ED’s reviewing process for ESSA plans continues to be vague for many states and the feedback for the plans is all over the board. For Washington, D.C., and Illinois, ED stated that both plans’ testing and accountability provisions may not adhere to ESSA and requested additional information. The feedback for Arizona is minimal; it seeks more information on just a few factors related to holding schools accountable. The letter to North Dakota instead points out a number of areas where the state’s plan fails to align with ESSA. In the letter to Michigan, ED requested information on a variety of ESSA requirements, including how the state will hold schools and districts accountable, challenging state academic standards and assessments, statewide accountability systems, school support and improvement activities, rates of access to educators, school conditions, and more. Michigan now has until August 17 to resubmit their plan with the necessary changes.

As the ESSA approval process continues, principals still have a chance to get involved and have their voices heard. As noted above, only four states have had their plans approved, so don’t miss your chance to get involved! If you need assistance getting started, peruse NASSP’s ESSA Toolkit to find valuable ideas and background information.

 

In the Press

Statistics for Public School Principals, National Center for Education Statistics

Curious how the principal profession is evolving? The National Center for Education Statistics recently released its findings from the 2015–16 National Teacher and Principal Survey. The survey studied elementary and secondary principals at public schools around the nation to gather important data that provides a greater insight into the makeup of our nation’s school leaders.

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