Karla Denny, Director of Communications, 785-296-4876
June 12, 2008
For Immediate Release
Highlights of the June State Board of Education Meeting
TOPEKA/ The Kansas State Board of Education held its monthly board meeting, June 10 - 11, 2008, in the Board Room at the Kansas State Department of Education, 120 SE 10th Avenue, Topeka, Kansas. Nine of the ten Board members were present on Tuesday with Janet Waugh absent. Eight Board members were present on Wednesday. Janet Waugh and Sue Gamble were absent. Following are highlights of the two-day meeting.
Dr. Posny, Kansas Commissioner of Education shared with the Board a document summarizing the major State Board initiatives under the Board goal, the ensuing objectives and the recommended activities.
Karla Denny, director of communications & recognition programs, updated the Board on the statewide marketing campaign to promote teaching as a profession. A contract was awarded to Gizmo Pictures to provide audio and video production services.
Dr. Mary Devin and Ed O’Malley, co-chairs for the Kansas Educational Leadership Commission, presented the final report and leadership recommendations of the Commission. The Commission, endorsed by the Kansas State Board of Education in July 2007, was created to guide the establishment of a cohesive, research-based system of leadership development for Kansas educators. The Commission, a partnership among government, public education, and private industry, was funded by the Wallace Foundation, the Kansas Health Foundation, and the Kansas State Department of Education.
Five of the Commission’s recommendations concerned developing teacher leadership; two concerned preparation programs. One recommendation was in the area of leader evaluation; three concerned professional development, and the final recommendation was in the area of conditions of work. The Board moved to accept the 12 recommendations of the Commission.
The Board appointed Lory Mills, Sharon Close and Laura Kaiser to the Professional Standards Board. The Board appointed Ruth Goff to the Licensure Review Committee, and Suzanne Bangert was appointed to the Professional Practices Commission. The following individuals were appointed to the Special Education Advisory Council: SueAnn Wanklyn, Dale Rawson, Penny Hoffman, Anne Elliott, Vicki Sharp, Anne Roberts, Susan Clayton, Luanne Ward, Larry Meyer and Karen Kroh.
Dr. Tom Foster introduced Phyllis Farrar and Carol Swinney who discussed with the Board the world language committee’s work with the proposed Kansas Model Curricular Standards for World Languages. The State Board received the model standards and will discuss them at next month’s meeting.
The Kansas State Board of Education acted to adopt the following amended teacher licensure regulations: K.A.R. 91-1-200, 91-1-201, 91-1-203, 91-10204, 91-1-205, 91-1-207, 91-1-209, 91-1-210, 91-1-220, 91-1-221, 91-19-1 and 91-19-6. A roll call vote ensued: Steve Abrams, yes; John Bacon, yes; Sue Gamble, yes; Sally Cauble, yes; Carol Rupe, yes; Kathy Martin, yes; Jana Shaver, yes; Ken Willard, yes; and Bill Wagnon, yes. Janet Waugh was absent.
Dr. Tom Foster reviewed with the Board a report on shifting from seat-based approaches to learning-based approaches for granting credit. Many educators feel that the focus on units of credit based upon attendance ignores important aspects of educational psychology and diminishes the importance of academic achievement. However, moving to a system where learning is the constant and time is a variable involves overcoming multiple barriers, including many local practices. The presentation summarized national efforts to move to an achievement approach along with how the state has encouraged local options for change. Successful programs of learning-based approaches were identified for the Board.
In February, the Board approved nine motions that were designed to encourage student engagement in career planning while gaining 21st century skills. Dr. Foster presented an update of the progress of this long-term, wide-ranging initiative. Agency staff, educators from the field and representatives from various constituencies are working collaboratively to develop a process and build support for systemic change.
The Board met in executive session for the purpose of discussing personnel matters.
On Wednesday, the Board had the opportunity to hear from Garfield Elementary School, USD 402 Augusta. Garfield Elementary School is the recipient of a 2008 Panasonic National School Change Award. This is the only award of its kind. Annually, six schools across America are recognized for having “significantly changed.” The awards are conducted and co-sponsored by the Panasonic Corporation of North America and the Fordham University Graduate School of Education. Nominated schools measure themselves against change in four dimensions. Embedded within the dimensions are criteria to assess systemic change. Following the presentation, the Board presented the educators with a certificate honoring their achievement.
Dr. Eric Hirsch, director of special projects, New Teacher Center at the University of California, Santa Cruz, reviewed the preliminary results of the Kansas Teaching, Learning & Leadership survey with the Board. In January, all Kansas teachers, principals, and licensed school-based educators had the opportunity to privately and anonymously provide input on issues critical to student learning.
“This is great information to have as we look at teacher retention and recruitment in our state,: said Alexa Posny, Kansas Commissioner of Education. “The impact of this survey bodes well for Kansas as we use the data to enhance school improvement planning, engage faculty conversations, and work collaboratively with Kansas communities to ensure that all students meet or exceed high academic standards and are prepared for their next steps after completing high school.” To access the complete report, go to www.kantell.org
Dale M. Dennis, deputy commissioner of education, discussed the FY 2010 budget with the Board and presented options for FY 2010. He also reviewed the state’s fiscal position and the funds it would take to comply with current law for all programs. A proposed FY 2010 budget will be brought to the Board in July.
The Board approved the consent agenda.
Reminder: The policy committee of the State Board will meet on Wednesday, June 18, at 9:00 a.m. at the Kansas State Department of Education.
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