A-F Panel members Casandra McLeod, left, and Derek Redelman review the final report. Redelman was the only person on the 17-member panel to vote against the final recommendation, citing concerns about how growth would be calculated.
The governor, the state superintendent and legislative leaders asked a 17-member panel for input on how to rewrite the metrics used to assign letter grades to schools after the General Assembly sent the two-year-old system back to the State Board for an overhaul.
“Parents are going to get quite a bit of information about the growth of their students,” says state superintendent Glenda Ritz, who co-chaired the panel. “Not only passing categories for achievement, but also knowing they’re on a good trajectory so to speak to where they need to be.”
The A-F panel’s recommendation is far from final. In fact, most of what’s going to the State Board for review is a conceptual framework. There’s no statistical modeling yet to show how the new system would impact schools’ grades.
And that’s a problem, says Indiana Chamber of Commerce Vice President Derek Redelman. Continue Reading →
Sen. Scott Schneider, R-Indianapolis, talks with Sen. Tim Skinner, D-Terre Haute, before the third Common Core panel. State lawmakers discuss the cost of transitioning to new academic standards and assessments.
State lawmakers spent Tuesday putting a price tag on how much it will cost to implement new academic standards and assessments.
The legislation that triggered a review of Indiana’s academic standards also required the state’s Office of Management and Budget to prepare an analysis of the cost of transitioning to Common Core, the nationally crafted academic standards state education officials adopted back in 2010.
“We tried to figure out how much it stretched budgets in the past to try to figure out somehow whether or not a change would stretch budgets in the future,” says Chad Timmerman, one of the authors of the report.
Timmerman told lawmakers that on the whole, most Indiana school districts would have purchased new technology and textbooks even if the state hadn’t adopted new academic standards.
“At the local level, a lot of these costs are going to be absorbable and be considered the normal cost of doing business,” he says. Continue Reading →
Speaker of the House Brian Bosma, left, and Superintendent of Public Instruction Glenda Ritz address the media at a press conference following the release of a report analyzing the state's A-F accountability system.
Former state superintendent Tony Bennett’s staff made “plausible” changes to the state’s school rating system before releasing 2012′s A-F grades, “consistently applying” their changes to benefit not only a favorite charter school but to 180 other schools across the state, a report released Friday says.
The General Assembly’s GOP leaders commissioned Indiana University’s John Grew and policy analyst Bill Sheldrake to write the report after the Associated Press released emails showing Bennett’s staff working frantically to change the formula after discovering that favorite charter, Christel House Academy, at first appeared likely to receive a C.
They also found Bennett’s staff disregarded high school scores in determining Christel House’s grade, a change they “consistently applied to 16 other schools which had analagous situations.” Continue Reading →
Superintendent Glenda Ritz has said as Indiana reviews the Common Core, the focus needs to be on figuring out what standards will curb the need for remediation when students reach postsecondary education.
“Nearly one-third of all 2011 high school graduates attending postsecondary schools in Indiana required costly remediation,” according to the report.
Although State Superintendent Glenda Ritz has stopped short of saying whether Indiana should stick with the new, nationally-crafted academic standards, she’ssaidrepeatedly the state has a serious remediation problem and needs to take a closer look at its math standards.The report her office put out reviewing the new standards includes stats from the Indiana Commission for Higher Education.
(You’ll find the full Common Core report, including our notes, below the jump.)
State education officials had to submit a report on the Common Core to the governor, the state board, and the legislative study committee tasked with reviewing the new standards by July 1 as part of HB 1427, the complex pause proposal that passed the General Assembly this spring. Continue Reading →
“I’m my own worst critic,” he tells Steve Samuel, the assistant principal evaluating him, right before suggesting he be marked down in one category.
Like many districts, Wayne Township is using a modified version of the state’s teacher evaluation model. Teachers are scored in three “domains” — broad categories like planning, instruction and leadership — broken down into multiple subcategories.
We’ll show you what it looks like below. But first, it’s important to understand how the two evaluation systems are different. Continue Reading →
The Indiana Statehouse reflected in the windows of the building housing the Indiana State Teachers Association, the state's largest teachers union.
Changes to the state’s collective bargaining law in 2011 created a new timeline for contract negotiations between teachers unions and school districts. Most Indiana school districts signed labor agreements before the October deadline. But teachers represented by the Carmel Clay Education Association still don’t have a contract in place for the 2012-13 school year.
Carmel Clay is only the third school district* to reach the final step in the new timeline since the law changed in 2011. So the board hasn’t fielded a complaint during the mandatory fact finding period before. That means everyone’s headed into unchartered territory, says Sarah Cudahy, general counsel for IEERB.
If you’re an Indiana state lawmaker (at least in the current majority), you probably think the state’s public universities are doing too little to keep a student’s cost of attendance down. The price of a college education is rising faster than the rate of inflation, you argue.
If you’re a public university in Indiana, on the other hand, you probably think decreasing state appropriations left you no choice but to raise tuition and fees more than state lawmakers would’ve wanted.
A recently-released report hints at a fundamental cause for the financial strain at Indiana’s public universities: a surge in enrollment in the past decade, brought on in part by the most recent economic downturn. Continue Reading →
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