State Board Meeting Highlights October 14, 2017
The State Board of Education held its Regular Monthly Board Meeting on Thursday, October 19, 2017 at 5:00 p.m.
All materials and presentations from the meeting can be accessed on the online meeting platform posted within each month’s agenda as posted on our website (www.destateboarded.k12.de.us ).
- Here is a direct link to the agenda complete with links and attached documents related to presentations and other items before the Board: SBE Monthly Meeting Agenda October 2017
The audio recording from the meeting is now posted on the State Board website. An index of the recording with live links by section is copied below.
- Board members discussed education events in which they had been involved including Community Conversations for new School Report Cards, a WEIC meeting, Teacher of the Year selection committees, and the annual Teacher of the Year awards gala. Board members discussed upcoming events including Delaware School Boards Association meetings, National School Boards Association meetings and upcoming Department of Education community discussions. The Executive Director presented her report which included discussion of the Teacher of the Year selection process as well as attendance at a recent University of Delaware speakers series which featured Vice President Biden and Governor Kasich. Additionally, she provided an overview or local and national articles related to education issues which were provided for review by the Board and public.
- Secretary Bunting provided a comprehensive report to the Board which included details about recent discussions related to tiered reimbursements and growth of the STARS program for early learning. She discussed many of the school visits and events with school leaders, educators, and students in which she had been involved throughout the month. These visits included touring early learning centers, meeting with district superintendents to discuss goal-setting, school visits where yearlong residents are engaged in teacher preparation with Wilmington University, meeting with the Youth Advocacy Council through Delaware CAN, and meeting with the Christina School Board. She updated the Board on the work related to supporting our most underperforming schools and coordinated efforts related to initiatives to better support Wilmington schools. She reviewed the visit she made with the Governor and others to Springfield, MA where she learned about the empowerment zone they had created to help schools improve student achievement by increasing administrator flexibility, budgeting, and curricular improvements. She also announced that the Christina School District, Governor’s Office, Department of Education and Christina Education Association had signed a letter of intent agreeing to collaborate on improving the educational experiences and outcomes for students in Christina School District’s lowest performing schools in the city of Wilmington. She discussed that they would be holding community conversations in Wilmington to gather feedback from neighborhood residents. She discussed the approval of the Special Education Strategic plan and the presentation of the plan before the Interagency Resource Management Committee She discussed numerous school visits and discussions with education leaders throughout the state. She highlighted the ongoing work the Department is leading to develop an anti-discrimination policy for our schools and the numerous community and stakeholder discussions underway to shape this policy.
- Deputy Secretary, Karen Field Rogers, led the presentation of the 2016-17 Accountability reports. These school and district reports included the current metrics in the Delaware School Success Framework. These reports are currently presented via the accountability tab within the School Profile reports. It was discussed that this is the final year of this specific report since next year’s reports will reflect the requirements as outlined in the state’s ESSA plan and will be included in the new school report cards. The Department is currently holding community conversations to get feedback on the design, accessibility, and usability of these new reports which will be published in the fall of 2018.
- The Board received data and analysis regarding Advanced Placements scores from the 2016-17 school year. Chief Academic Officer, Michael Watson, presented this information to the Board and included in his presentation several areas where performance showed a marked increase over recent years. These increases included performance in STEM area AP exams, increases in access to more AP courses, and performance increases among several subgroup populations. The presentation also referenced the College Board report which provides information on all AP exams throughout the state as well as other performance details that are much more granular than a simple overview.
- Denise Stouffer presented an update from the Charter School Office which included an overview of the charter renewal timeline and application information for the five schools currently being considered for renewal.
- The Board discussed Professional Standards Board regulation 1515, Hearing Rules and Procedures. They expressed concern that the regulation required communication be via mail or a hand delivered written request given that is not the most productive or prevalent way of communicating in today’s society. It was discussed that the statute actually restricts communication between the Standards Board and the licensee to be done via certified mail. The Board voted to direct the Executive Director to send formal comment to the Professional Standards Board (PSB) asking that they consider requesting a statutory change to allow for electronic mail (email) also be a means by which communication could occur. The approved motion stated that they would work with the PSB and the Department to pursue such a legislative change with the General Assembly.
- The SBE will host its second State Report Card workshop on December 6th from 5pm – 8:30pm. This will include interactive discussion on the look, accessibility, design, and usability of new state and also feature a presentation from a national group that is experienced and has assisted states in the development of school report cards and dashboards. Additional Details will be sent out in the coming weeks.
- The Board has changed the date of its December meeting to better align with facility schedules. They will meet December 14, 2017 instead of the originally scheduled date.
The next regular monthly meeting of the State Board is scheduled for
Thursday, November 16, 2017
The meeting will begin at 5:00 p.m.