Press Releases

Tuesday, October 28, 2014 10:36 AM

The Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) is providing an opportunity for local education agencies (LEA) to attend an online training that will address how the data from the Pennsylvania Information Management System (PIMS) is used by Data Recognition Corporation to produce pre-code labels for PSSA. This training will explain the templates required in this PIMS internal snapshot and the relevance to accurate data submission and reporting. The training will be followed by a question and answer period.

PDE will be offering four webinar sessions via GoToMeeting on Nov. 4, 2014, and Nov. 5, 2014. Presenters include representatives from PDE's Division of Performance Analysis and Reporting and Data Quality (PIMS). Trainings on both days will be held from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., and 2 p.m. to 3 p.m.

To register, please select one of the links provided below. Each session has a distinct registration link. Be sure to click the link associated with the session you plan to attend. 

Note:  Upon registration, you will receive a confirmation email with the specific system requirements and link for joining each webinar:        

Nov. 4, 2014, from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.

https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/454832058

Nov. 4, 2014, from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m.

https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/714272682

Nov. 5, 2014, from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.

https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/748164178

Nov. 5, 2014, from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m.

https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/785867954

Please contact PDE's Division of Performance Analysis and Reporting with any questions at 717.705.2343 or ra-pas@pa.gov

 
Friday, October 24, 2014 1:13 PM

The Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) has developed a website to solicit feedback from the public on the eligible content in English language arts and mathematics in grades three through eight, and Algebra I and Literature at the secondary level.

Pennsylvania’s eligible content statements are a straightforward set of what the Department wants students to know and do at each grade level, and serve as the blueprint for the state assessments.

This website was designed to promote public awareness and understanding of the eligible content and obtain feedback from Pennsylvania educators, parents and the general public on the eligible content statements, their purpose and value.

If after gathering feedback PDE concludes that significant changes are needed, it will engage in a revision process via statewide public hearings.

The website is currently populated with eligible content for grade three English language arts and mathematics and is available for public review.

By mid-November, the website will be expanded to encompass the eligible content for grades three through eight and Algebra I and Literature.

Please share this information with educators, parents, community members and other interested parties and encourage them to visit http://paacademicreview.org and review the content. The feedback that is received will be invaluable as we evaluate and refine our career and postsecondary expectations for our students.

 
Monday, October 13, 2014 1:06 PM

Performance Profile (SPP) in the 2012-13 school year, the Pennsylvania Department of Education recognized that special circumstances may contribute to a school's federal designation or its state School Performance Profile score.  The Pennsylvania Department of Education allows schools to notify the Department of these special circumstances only if the circumstance creates an error in a school's designation or School Performance Profile score.  While the Pennsylvania Department of Education is not re-designating "priority" and "focus" schools in the 2013-14 school year, we are designating a list of "reward" schools.  Therefore, the Department is able to recognize two of the following three special circumstances that may impact a school's designation or school performance score: 1) the 1 percent cap; 2) participation rate; and 3) schools with no tested grades.  Remember that federal designations apply only to Title I schools. An explanation of each circumstance follows:

1 percent cap:  For purposes of the Federal Accountability Designation, the 1 percent cap on students who participated in the alternate assessment applies; for purposes of the School Performance Profile, the 1 percent cap does not apply.  Requesting an increase in the 1 percent cap for federal purposes requires schools to petition the Pennsylvania Department of Education's Bureau of Curriculum, Assessment and Instruction for a higher cap prior to the administration of the assessment.  Therefore, it is too late for this special circumstance to apply.  Details concerning this request for future use can be provided by contacting John Nau in the Bureau's Division of Performance Analysis and Reporting via email at jnau@pa.gov or by phone at 717.214.9391.

Participation rate:  If a school fails to meet the required 95 percent participation rate for federal accountability, and this failure is due to circumstances beyond the control of the school, such as parental opt-out, the school may notify Dana Klouser via email, at RA-EDSPECCIRSPP@pa.gov, of the circumstance that led to the insufficient participation rate.  Failure to meet the 95 percent participation can disqualify a school from being identified as a "reward" school.

 
Monday, October 13, 2014 12:30 PM

The Pennsylvania Department of Education is pleased to announce Pennsylvania's Educator Effectiveness Rating System (PEERS), a free, voluntary, web-based version of the Act 82 Educator Effectiveness final rating tools (PDE 82-1, 82-2 and 82-3). This online tool will be available to local education agencies for the summative evaluation of teaching professionals, non-teaching professionals and principals/administrators during the second half of the 2014-15 school year.

PEERS will be hosted within the existing PVAAS web application, allowing all account holders to have ease of access to the online rating tools for the 82-1, 82-2, and 82-3 using the existing PVAAS account system. Through PEERS, the School Performance Profile (SPP) Score will be pre-populated by the PVAAS web application, with the flexibility to change the school or allow multiple schools. When available, PVAAS teacher measures will also be pre-populated into PEERS. As part of the web delivery, rating information will be aggregated to summary-level reporting.

PEERS is aligned to the 82-1, 82-2 and 82-3 .xls documents provided to LEAs on the PDE Educator Effectiveness webpage, with the added benefit of web-enabling the three forms to maximize the capabilities of a web interface and the online management of these forms.  The system will link teachers, principals/administrators, and non-teaching specialists to a possible final rating form based on PIMS data submitted by each LEA, with the ability to change the form as per local decision.

Use of PEERS is free, voluntary, and may be used alone or in concert with other tools that LEAs are using to manage the supervision and evaluation process. Access to the forms is granted by the LEAs.

Opportunity for Input: 

During the development and implementation process, PDE and SAS (the PVAAS provider) are interested in gaining input from administrators in the field in order to design and deliver a system that provides users with an efficient and effective process to not only complete the summative rating forms, but to be able to use the data effectively for teacher, principal and school/district growth and improvement.

To that end, focus groups will be established to provide feedback, with the overall intent to elicit input as to the effectiveness of the online tool in meeting the needs of LEAs.

PDE is asking for a maximum of a three member LEA administrator team - representatives of large and small LEAs from rural, urban and suburban areas across Pennsylvania. Feedback is sought from those who plan to use the tool during the second half of SY14-15, those considering using the tool, and those who may use the tool along with other systems they already have in place.

Focus groups will be convened a maximum of twice during this school year to meet with SAS (the PVAAS provider), as well as completing a maximum of two online surveys about the design and development of PEERS.

Any LEA/District that is interested in serving on the PEERS focus group should email pdepvaas@iu13.org by October 15, 2014. One person from the LEA should email the name, role and email address for each person from your 1-3 member administrator team for the PEERS focus group.

To learn more information about the specific capabilities of this tool, please access the PVAAS site at https://pvaas.sas.com for more details about PEERS.

 

 
Wednesday, October 8, 2014 1:39 PM

PSERS Board of Trustees announced yesterday the retirement of Executive Director Jeffrey B. Clay, effective March 6, 2015. Clay has served as Executive Director of the $53 billion pension fund since October 2003. Prior to his tenure at the pension systems, Mr. Clay was a judicial law clerk at Commonwealth Court and spent 10 years in private practice with the law firm of McNees, Wallace and Nurick, specializing in real estate and appellate litigation. PSERS’ Board will conduct a national search for Clay’s replacement.

Source: PSBA Daily Edition, October 8, 2014. 

 
Wednesday, October 8, 2014 9:19 AM

Join the Southern Region of PASCD for a breakfast meeting with Dr. Paul Healey, PA Principals Association executive director, and Dr. Joseph Clapper, PA Principals Association assistant executive director, on October 23, 2014 from 7:30 - 8:15 (Registration) and 8:15-9:30 a.m. (Dr. Healey and Clapper will speak) at the Capital Area Intermediate Unit (Susquehanna Room).

Dr. Healey and Dr. Clapper will take time to discuss Act 82 of 2012: Educator Effectiveness Systems. What does this mean to principals and the superintendents who rate them? All educators, administrators and teachers aspiring to the principalship in the Southern Region are invited to join the group for a light continental breakfast and an informative discussion. There is no cost for this event!

 
Tuesday, October 7, 2014 11:24 AM

A coalition of more than 40 organizations [today] kicked off the Campaign for Fair Education Funding to ensure that every student has access to a quality education no matter where they live.

Click here for full story.


Source: Chambersburg Public Opinion, Oct. 6, 2014.

Photos from The Campaign for Fair Education Funding press conference can be browsed through and downloaded here:

https://plus.google.com/photos/114657393330805065946/albums/6067481501697118161

 

 
Tuesday, October 7, 2014 11:20 AM

PA Principals Association Executive Director, Dr. Paul Healey, requests that PDE alter the implementation of the Principal Effectiveness System for 2014-15. I am making a formal request on behalf of the school leaders across the state in reference to the Principal Effectiveness System. We are asking PDE to immediately consider suspending the Correlation piece (15%) for the 2014-15 school year and make it optional this year along with the elective/SLO piece and require it for 2015-16 instead. Our request is based on the following reasons:

  •  The current training for the Correlation and SLO pieces has just begun and it is already October and thus it is safe to say that many school leaders and superintendents will not be trained until early December
  • The training on the correlation piece suggests that school leaders examine their data over the summer and then begin the critical conversations with their supervisors in late Summer or Early Fall.  This certainly makes sense because the correlation piece should inform the SLOs to be developed, thus they should work in partnership
  • Because the training is now just starting, school leaders do not have ample time to concentrate on these critical conversations and thus will not have a full year to work on their "plans" which will become part of their annual evaluation
  • In addition, we believe implementing this piece right now when school leaders are concentrating on the teacher effectiveness pieces as well as the framework for learning for themselves places a heavy burden on them and risks a poor implementation of the new system
  • The teacher effectiveness system was implemented in phases in which the first phase only required the 50% observation and building level data.  We believe the principal effectiveness system should also be phased in whereby only the new framework for leadership and the building level data are required for 2014-15.
  • Finally, as we have been traveling around the state meeting with our members, we have clearly heard their frustrations about feeling overwhelmed with the implementation of PA Core, Keystones, Teacher Effectiveness and Principal Effectiveness. These are people who sincerely want to do a good job with all of these initiatives, but feel the plate is now overflowing.

   Therefore, we respectfully request that PDE reconsider the current phase in cycle for Principal Effectiveness and only require the framework for leadership and the building level data for 2014 15 and the other two components (correlation and elective/SLO) required for 2015-16.

 

   We thank you in advance for your consideration and are willing to discuss this matter at any time in the very near future.   

 

Thanks, Paul 

 

 

 
Thursday, October 2, 2014 1:45 PM

The Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) has announced its Pennsylvania's Educator Effectiveness Rating System (PEERS), a free, voluntary, web-based version of the Act 82 Educator Effectiveness final rating tools (PDE 82-1, 82-2, and 82-3). This online tool will be available to local education agencies for the summative evaluation of teaching professionals, non-teaching professionals and principals/administrators during the second half of the 2014-15 school year.

PEERS will be hosted within the existing PVAAS web application, allowing all account holders to have ease of access to the online rating tools for the 82-1, 82-2, and 82-3 using the existing PVAAS account system. Through PEERS, the School Performance Profile (SPP) Score will be pre-populated by the PVAAS web application, with the flexibility to change the school or allow multiple schools. When available, PVAAS teacher measures will also be pre-populated into PEERS. As part of the web delivery, rating information will be aggregated to summary-level reporting.

PEERS is aligned to the 82-1, 82-2 and 82-3 .xls documents provided to LEAs on the PDE Educator Effectiveness webpage, with the added benefit of web-enabling the three forms to maximize the capabilities of a web interface and the online management of these forms.  The system will link teachers, principals/administrators, and non-teaching specialists to a possible final rating form based on PIMS data submitted by each LEA, with the ability to change the form as per local decision.

Use of PEERS is free, voluntary, and may be used alone or in concert with other tools that LEAs are using to manage the supervision and evaluation process. Access to the forms is granted by the LEAs.

Opportunity for Input:

During the development and implementation process, PDE and SAS (the PVAAS provider) are interested in gaining input from administrators in the field in order to design and deliver a system that provides users with an efficient and effective process to not only complete the summative rating forms, but to be able to use the data effectively for teacher, principal, and school/district growth and improvement.

To that end, focus groups will be established to provide feedback, with the overall intent to elicit input as to the effectiveness of the online tool in meeting the needs of LEAs.

PDE is asking for a maximum of a three member LEA administrator team - representatives of large and small LEAs from rural, urban and suburban areas across Pennsylvania. Feedback is sought from those who plan to use the tool during the second half of SY14-15, those considering using the tool, and those who may use the tool along with other systems they already have in place.

Focus groups will be convened a maximum of twice during this school year to meet with SAS (the PVAAS provider), as well as completing a maximum of two online surveys about the design and development of PEERS.

Any LEA/District that is interested in serving on the PEERS focus group should email pdepvaas@iu13.org by October 15, 2014. One person from the LEA should email the name, role and email address for each person from your 1-3 member administrator team for the PEERS focus group.

To learn more information about the specific capabilities of this tool, please access the PVAAS site at https://pvaas.sas.com for more details about PEERS.

 
Wednesday, October 1, 2014 8:49 AM

SY13-14 PVAAS Teacher-Specific Reporting will be released on the following dates:

·  The night of October 23, 2014: PVAAS District Admin (1 per LEA) and School Admin Account Holders (1 per school)

·  The night of October 30, 2014: Teachers

PVAAS Teacher Specific Reporting will be provided in Reading and Math (grades 4-8), Science (grades 4 & 8), and Keystone content areas (Algebra I, Literature, Biology).

PVAAS Teacher-Specific Reporting will NOT be provided in PSSA writing (Grades 5 & 8) for the following reasons: (1) Moving to PSSA ELA; and (2) lower than preferred correlations at the teacher level. 

Questions can be directed to pdepvaas@iu13.org.

 

 
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P.O. Box 39, 122 Valley Road, Summerdale, PA 17093 Phone: (717) 732-4999 Fax: (717) 732-4890
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