MESSAGES 2013 :: APRIL 11, 2013

APRIL 11, 2013 - Teachers' Biweekly Messages

This week, we began our third round of READY meetings to provide update information to local educators about the new assessments for students and the new accountability model for schools and to provide demonstrations and other information about Home Base. Each principal has received the invitations for these meetings being held on April 8, 23, and May 6 (assessments and accountability) and on April 18, 22, and 29 (Home Base). This time, rather than traveling across the state, we are holding virtual meetings via webinar from 3:30 - 5 p.m. each time. Because of limitations in our number of participant slots, we have asked that school groups participate together using one log-in. I hope you and your principal and other staff will be able to participate in these, and we also will post a recording of these webinars online for you. The specific web address for these will be sent to you in coming weeks.

June Atkinson

In this Biweekly Teachers' Message:

  1. State Board Meeting Highlights
  2. April is Financial Literacy Month
  3. New Assessment Item Types: Gridded Response
  4. Educator Effectiveness Update Webinar Reminder
  5. Beaufort County Principal Named Principal of the Year
  6. Four Receive ACT College and Career Readiness Awards
  7. ACE Academy Highlights Aviation, Careers

State Board Meeting Highlights

At last week's State Board of Education meeting, members elected William Cobey Jr., a new at-large member from Orange County, as its chairman and A.L. "Buddy" Collins, a new board member from Forsyth County (District 5), as vice-chairman. Members also discussed criteria for endorsements to high school diplomas, educator effectiveness policies for 2012-13 and salaries for teachers and other certified school personnel. Members approved criteria for Race to the Top bonus payments to certified personnel in persistently low-performing schools and accepted a voluntary charter relinquishment from STEAM Academy of Winston-Salem. A summary of all Board action items is available online at http://stateboard.ncpublicschools.gov/highlights/2013 .

April is "Financial Literacy Month"

Gov. Pat McCrory has proclaimed April as "Financial Literacy Month to encourage the instruction, activities and initiatives provided by state agencies, public and private institutions, regional agencies and community organizations to develop and enhance financial literacy knowledge and skills to ensure economic success.

New Assessment Item Types: Gridded Response

Mathematics end-of-grade assessments at grades 5-8 and the Algebra I/Integrated I end-of-course assessment consist of multiple-choice items and about 20 percent gridded-response items. A gridded response item requires the student to record a numerical answer into a field rather than to select an answer from several choices. There are guideline documents and examples posted on the testing website at www.ncpublicschools.org/accountability/testing . Look for the heading "Guidelines, Practice and Examples for Math Gridded Response Items" and you will find four documents to download. You can find additional examples of new online item types in the Online Assessment Tutorial (http://go.ncsu.edu/nctdemo). Released test forms may also be used to acquaint students with the new item types. Released test forms for 2012-13 are available in an online assessment version and in a paperand- pencil version. Online released forms and Online Assessment Tutorial forms are presented in the same interactive environment as the actual online assessment and are available at www.ncpublicschools.org/accountability/testing /releasedforms . For more information, please contact your LEA test coordinator or your regional accountability coordinator.

Educator Effectiveness Update Webinar Reminder

As a reminder, the NCDPI and NCAE are sponsoring an Educator Effectiveness Update webinar on Thursday, April 25, from 4-5:30 p.m. Topics to be discussed include the sixth standard, overall effectiveness status, EVAAS, and the Measures of Student Learning (including the Common Exams and pilot programs in other grades and content areas). To register, please visit http://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/781311065 . Once you register, you will receive a confirmation e-mail containing information about joining the webinar.

Beaufort County Principal Named Principal of the Year

Congratulations to Chocowinity Middle School Principal Dale Cole who recently was named the 2013 Wells Fargo North Carolina Principal of the Year during a luncheon ceremony held in Cary. The Beaufort County Schools' principal succeeds Page High School (Guilford County Schools) Principal Patrice Faison. State Superintendent June Atkinson commended Cole on his selection saying, "Dale understands what it takes to be an effective administrator. His strong understanding of the curriculum, effective teaching practices and the importance of collaboration are all hallmarks of an exceptional school administrator." As Wells Fargo Principal of the Year, Cole will receive an additional $3,000 for his school and $3,000 for personal use. He also will receive a scholarship for a 10-day educational tour of China thanks to EF Education First, will be a member of the State Superintendent's Principals' Advisory Council and will serve a one-year term as advisor to the State Board of Education.

Four Receive ACT College and Career Readiness Awards

At last week's State Board of Education meeting, four awards were presented under the ACT's College and Career Readiness Campaign. The awards celebrate achievement and create awareness around the Campaign's goal of college and career readiness for all. North Carolina is one of seven states (others are Alabama, Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky and Wisconsin) participating in the Campaign's inaugural year. The award recipients are Jaquesha Stokes (Mt. Tabor High School/Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools), Student Readiness Award; Parkland High School (Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools), College and Career Transition Award; Edgecombe Community College, Career Preparedness Award; and Catawba Valley Community College, Workplace Success Award. A national selection committee will review all state recipients and select an honoree for each award for national recognition. Recipients will be recognized at the ACT National Gala on College and Career Readiness in Washington, D.C. in May.

ACE Academy Highlights Aviation, Careers

Teacher are asked to share the following information with students who may be interested in attending this summer camp. Middle and high school students will have the opportunity to learn more about aviation and aviation-related job opportunities at five Aviation Career Education academies that will be held across North Carolina this summer. The N.C. Department of Transportation Division of Aviation and the North Carolina Airports Association sponsor the ACE camps. Students in seventh through ninth grades can attend the middle school ACE camps in Greensboro, Raleigh and Winston-Salem. High school camps will be held for students in grades 10-12 at Elizabeth City, Greensboro, Raleigh and Winston-Salem, while Charlotte will conduct a camp for rising fifth-through-seventh graders for the first time. A maximum of 30 students will be able to participate in each camp session, and the application deadline is May 10. For more information, including an application, go to www.ncdot.gov/aviation/events or contact NCDOT Division of Aviation Safety and Education Specialist Tom Freeman at tfreeman@ncdot.gov or 919.814.0559.