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Kansas State Board of Education August 2022 Highlights

Posted: Aug 10, 2022

Kansas State Board of Education members during their August meeting conducted a public hearing to consider proposed changes to the Kansas State High School Activities Association’s (KSHSAA) classification of senior high schools.

The purpose of the proposed rule change is to apply an enrollment multiplier factor when determining classification numbers of private schools. Factors for determining the multiplier include school location, socioeconomic status and championships.

The hearing took place Wednesday, Aug. 10, 2022, at the Landon State Office Building. Six people spoke during the hearing – three in favor of the proposed rule change and three against the change.

The KSHSAA board of directors met April 29, 2022, to consider changes to rule 5 – classification of senior high schools. Following discussion and deliberations, the KSHSAA board supported the first step in the process to change school classification. Per KSHSAA board approval, the next step in the process was to assess the opinion of KSHSAA member schools, which took pace May 6. Ballot submissions from each member school was due June 14.

The State Board will vote in September whether to approve this proposed amendment.

There were 216 (61.2%) of member schools that voted yes and 139 that voted no.

State Board of Education members met for their regular monthly meeting Aug. 9-10 at the Landon State Office Building in Topeka.

The State Board accepted the recommendations of the Commissioner’s Task Force on Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) and Emergency Assistance to Nonpublic Schools (EANS) Distribution of Money and approved the district expenditure plans for ESSER III and change requests for ESSER II.

Doug Boline, assistant director of the Kansas State Department of Education’s (KSDE) Special Education and Title Services (SETS) team, said there were nine ESSER II change applications from districts, representing 54,850 students. The plans included 238 budgeted expenditure items with a total value of $52 million. Out of $343.5 million allocated for ESSER II, $320.1 million (93%) has been allocated, with $22.4 million (7%) remaining.

There were 16 districts that submitted ESSERI III Plans, representing 54,003 students. The plans included 664 individual budgeted expenditures with a total value of $72.1 million (with $71.7 million being considered eligible expenditures). Ten districts submitted ESSERI III change plans, representing 8,773 students. The plans included 189 individual budgeted expenditures with a total value of $9.8 million. Out of $768.1 million allocated for ESSER III, $171.4 million (22%) has been allocated, with $524.2 million (68%) remaining, $71.7 million (9%) being reviewed and less than 1% in change requests.

State Board of Education members approved the recommended performance levels and cut scores for the new 10th-grade math assessment.

At the July meeting, Dr. Neal Kingston, a professor of educational psychology at The University of Kansas (KU) and director of the Achievement and Assessment Institute (AAI) at KU, shared recommended performance levels and cut scores for the 10th-grade math assessment.

When Kansas adopted its revised math standards in 2018, the revisions were significant enough that psychometricians determined the state assessment was no longer aligned with them. Therefore, AAI began the process of developing a new grade 10 math assessment. With the administration of the new assessment, performance cut scores had to be reset.

The performance levels and cut score recommendations were developed during a virtual standards setting meeting June 29-30. Kansas high school math educators were led through the standards setting process by staff members at AAI at KU. A group of Kansas educators worked with AAI to set the three cut scores using the “bookmark method.”

Final cut score recommendations are:

                                    Level 2                  Level 3                  Level 4

Scaled theta             458 (-0.42)              566 (0.66)             683 (1.83)

Reporting scale        273                          300                       329

 

KSDE’s Beth Fultz, assistant director of Career, Standards and Assessment Services (CSAS), also was on hand to answer questions.

The 10th-grade math assessment is one test form with 56 items, Kingston said. There are two test sessions, with each session taking about one class period. However, the test is untimed.

 

The Kansas Standards for Mathematics were approved in August 2018. A new 10th-grade mathematics test blueprint was finalized in January 2019, and new items aligned to the 2017 Kansas standards were developed from 2018-2020. All items went through Kansas educator content and bias panel reviews and were operationally administered in 2022.

Similar to the previous version of the test, the 2017 10th-grade math standards are intentionally rigorous by design. While the new test blueprint required new achievement standards to be set, the achievement expectations didn’t change. The goal of the standard setting was to maintain the rigor of the system of standards as previously set.

Dr. Mark Thompson, an education program consultant (health and physical education) on KSDE’s Career, Standards and Assessment Services (CSAS) team; along with Mary Alice Kelly, a school nurse for Shawnee Mission North High School, Shawnee Mission Unified School District 512; and Vince Naccarato, principal for Reno Valley Middle School, Nickerson-South Hutchinson USD 309, gave board members an update on the Vaping Extension for Community Health Care Outcomes (ECHO) for Education model. ECHO emphasizes collaboration and is built on four principles:

 

  1. Use technology to leverage scarce resources.
  2. Share best practices to reduce disparities.
  3. Employ case-based learning and guided practice.
  4. Monitor program outcomes.

 

The intent is for participants to learn from experts and help each other reduce the presence and impact of vaping in schools.

 

The goal is two have two Vaping ECHO for Education cohorts.

There were 49 applications for the first cohort. Twenty teams were selected – four middle schools, five middle-high schools and 11 high schools.

The first cohort took place in fall 2021 with team presentations of action plans in December and a final update in spring 2022.

Results from the first cohort included:

  • 81.4% indicated that more than 25% of the pilot information was new to them.
  • 52.9% learned from all or most of the action plans presented by other schools.
  • 65% of submitted action plans included two-plus goals for the pilot period.
  • 66.7% of respondents indicated they met all or most of their action plan goals.

The second Vaping ECHO for Education cohort is currently in the works, Thompson said. The goal is to have 20 teams. The target applicants are schools that applied but weren’t selected for the first cohort and schools that have Resist chapters, which is a student anti-tobacco organization.

State Board members recognized Callie Harris and Zerrin Oelze as 2020 national finalists for the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST). Harris and Oelze were among more than 100 educators recognized as national finalists for the 2020 PAEMST program, which is the nation’s highest honor for math and science teaching.

Each finalist received a $10,000 unrestricted award from the National Science Foundation and a trip to Washington, D.C.

Harris was a mathematics teacher at Maize Elementary School, Maize USD 266, at the time of her nomination. She currently serves as assistant principal at Pray-Woodman Elementary School in Maize.

Oelze is a science teacher at McLean Science and Technology Magnet Elementary School, Wichita USD 259.

The PAEMST national finalists are announced by the White House.

State Board members also recognized Kansans Can Best Practices Award recipients for the 2021-2022 school year. Cheryl Johnson, director of KSDE’s Child Nutrition and Wellness (CNW) team, introduced each recipient.

  • Scott County USD 466 was honored for Kansans Can Serve Local Foods.
  • Haven USD 312 was honored for Kansans Can Lead.
  • Maize USD 266 was honored for Kansans Can Implement Innovative Meal Pattern Strategies.

The State Board approved 32 school systems for accreditation through the Kansas Education Systems Accreditation (KESA) model. Two systems were approved for conditional accreditation. All 34 system recommendations from the Accreditation Review Council (ARC) were presented to the State Board in July.

Systems that were accredited are:

  • Cheylin USD 103
  • Lakin USD 215
  • Northeast USD 246
  • Cherokee USD 247
  • Girard USD 248
  • South Barber USD 255
  • Clearwater USD 264
  • Goddard USD 265
  • Maize USD 266
  • Stockton USD 271
  • Elk Valley USD 283
  • Salina USD 305
  • Fairfield USD 310
  • Colby USD 315
  • Golden Plains USD 316
  • Logan USD 326
  • Pleasanton USD 344
  • Newton USD 373
  • Smoky Valley USD 400
  • Caney Valley USD 436
  • Skyline USD 438
  • Cherryvale USD 447
  • Leoti USD 467
  • Copeland USD 476
  • Herington USD 487
  • Topeka USD 501
  • Attica USD 511
  • Brookridge Day School
  • Bishop Ward High School
  • St. James Academy
  • Corpus Christi Catholic School
  • Salina Diocese

The two systems conditionally accredited are:

  • Moscow USD 209
  • Liberal USD 480
     

Board members were provided four additional ARC recommendations for consideration. The recommendations are slated for action at the September State Board of Education meeting.

ARC recommends that Derby USD 260 and Sacred Heart Elementary (Emporia) be accredited. The ARC, after redetermination, recommends accreditation for Spearville USD 381 and Marais Des Cygnes Valley USD 456.

Dale Brungardt, KSDE’s director of School Finance, discussed appointing members to the new Kansas Children’s Vision Health and School Readiness Commission.

Senate Bill 62, which was passed in spring 2022, requires that the State Board establish the Kansas Children’s Vision Health and School Readiness Commission, Brungardt said.

The duties of the Commission, as specified in the bill, are as follows:

  1. Overseeing revision of state vision screening requirements and guidelines no fewer than once every seven years.
  2. Providing standardized vision screening referral letters and eye professional examination reports as referenced in the Kansas vision screening requirements and guidelines.
  3. Identifying state resources that assist in providing opportunities to offer free or low-cost eye exams for students who fail vision screenings and are unable to afford an examination of their own.
  4. Establishing a system to collect data from school health personnel concerning the results of the original screenings and referral outcomes, as well as issuing an annual report to the Secretary of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment and the Commissioner of Education.

 

The commission should be comprised of:

  • One optometrist
  • One ophthalmologist
  • One representative of a health organization dedicated to preventing blindness
  • One representative of KSDE
  • One representative of KDHE
  • One school nurse
  • One public health nurse
  • One school administrator

 

The bill specifies that members of the commission shall not be reimbursed for meeting expenses.

Tobias Wood, vice chairman of the Special Education Advisory Council, gave State Board members a SEAC quarterly update.

John Calvert and Jim Green, with KSDE’s Safe and Secure Schools Unit, led a discussion with the State Board about building a culture of safety in schools. They talked about positive relationships, anonymous reporting, mental health services and the school safety grant, which is $5 million each school year for 2018-2019, 2019-2020 and 2022-2023.

On Wednesday, Aug. 10, State Board members recognized the Washburn Rural High School Debate Team.

Since 2016, Washburn Rural High School has had nine teams finish in the top six at the National Speech and Debate Association's National Speech and Debate Tournament, with three teams winning the coveted National Championship. In June 2022, Washburn Rural debaters brought home fifth-place and first-place trophies.

The Kansas State Board of Education will meet next on Sept. 13-14 at the Landon State Office Building, 900 S.W. Jackson, Suite 102, in Topeka.

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