Wednesday, January 16, 2013 7:23 PM
Your retirement may be affected if you are retiring after July 1, 2013. By law, the Pennsylvania Employees Retirement System (PSERS) has an actuarial review completed every five years on the mortality rates of future retirees. As a result of that study, adjustments on benefit amounts of beneficiaries are determined. Because people are living longer, the amount you or your beneficiary, in event of your death, receives is adjusted based on these mortality tables. If you are retiring and plan on taking Option 2 or 3, there is a likelihood your benefits will be reduced if retiring after July 1, 2013. How much will depend on your age and the age(s) of your beneficiary. Because PA Principals Association staff members are not financial planners, we suggest you contact your school district business office, your financial planner and/or PSERS to determine the impact on your personal finances.
PA Principals Association will continue to work with PSERS and other education associations to better determine the impact of this change on school employees.
THIS CHANGE HAS NO EFFECT ON CURRENT RETIREES.
PSERS has added information to its web site to assist in helping members to understand this a little better. This information will also be shared with PSERS' contacts within each of the school districts. You may find the information by following the link under Hot News on the PSERS web site, or directly at: http://www.psers.state.pa.us/factorchanges.htm.
Wednesday, January 16, 2013 6:18 PM
Secretary of Education Ron Tomalis has announced that 31 grants, totaling $1.64 million, have been awarded to 25 career and technical education programs through the Career and Technical Education Equipment Grant program.
State and National Grades Issued for Education Performance, Policy; U.S. Earns a C+, Pennsylvania Receives C+ (78.2)
Thursday, January 10, 2013 1:40 PM
As a shocked nation struggles to come to terms with the recent school shootings in Newtown, Conn., policymakers, school leaders and the public alike have renewed their attention to the need to ensure a safe and secure environment in which students can grow and learn, and in which educators can teach. At the same time, policymakers and school leaders are focusing intently on the full range of factors that contribute to an academically successful school climate—strong peer and student-teacher relationships, effective and positive ways to address student misbehavior, supports for social and emotional development, and the involvement of parents and community groups. These issues are at the heart of the 2013 edition of Education Week's Quality Counts report: Code of Conduct: Safety, Discipline and School Climate.
New findings from the report's annual Chance-for-Success Index—which captures the role of education in a person's life, from cradle to career—show the country struggling to provide opportunities to succeed and many states lagging far behind the national leaders. The U.S. as a whole receives a C-plus on the index.
Friday, January 4, 2013 3:15 PM
The Pennsylvania Association of Elementary and Secondary School Principals (PA Principals Association) and EF Tours have partnered to host a tour of Europe for principals that provides PIL credits. Coming this summer (2013), principals can learn about Global Leadership as they tour the cities of London, Normandy, Paris, Berlin, Munich and Salzburg. Dr. William Ziegler, PA Principals Association president-elect and principal of Pottsgrove Middle School, will be teaching a PIL-approved course on the trip titled "Global Education." The group will be visiting a school in Munich and talking with educators in that city.
The PIL portion is optional and other educators may attend at the discounted rate; however, your spouse or special guest is welcome to attend but they will need to pay the non-discounted rate. The price for educators is the most discounted rate given by EF Tours.
This trip promises to be amazing as you explore the streets of Churchill'ss city, walk the battlefields of Normandy, climb the Eiffel Tower, learn from the STEM education in Germany and so much more.
Seating is limited on this trip, so please be sure to reserve your spot by registering now. Go to this web site to learn more and register for the trip: http://www.eftours.com/preview-tour.aspx?gt=1348180.
If you have any questions, please contact Dr. Ziegler at email@example.com.
Reserve your spot today!
William T. Ziegler, Ed.D.
PA Principals Association President-Elect
Pottsgrove Middle School
1351 N. Hanover Street
Pottstown, PA 19464
Friday, January 4, 2013 2:26 PM
Within this week, the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA) will be sending, via email, to all schools a survey to be completed regarding the 1975 Commonwealth Court permanent injunction barring PIAA from prohibiting boys and girls from participating together in interscholastic athletics. They are requesting that the court modify the permanent injunction to address changes in society and the law in the past 37 years. In particular, the issue of boys playing sports designated as being for girls will be evaluated. We are asking the member schools for input on this issue.
Friday, January 4, 2013 12:00 PM
The Pennsylvania Association of Elementary and Secondary School Principals (PA Principals Association) Board of Directors has announced the upcoming retirement of Joseph P. Acri as the assistant executive director, effective June 30, 2013. Mr. Acri has advocated for principals and public education in Harrisburg more than three decades -- first as the senior consultant for management services for the Pennsylvania School Boards Association for 17 years, followed by his current position as assistant executive director of PA Principals Association.
Mr. Acri is a Viet Nam veteran who achieved the rank of sergeant in the U.S. Air Force. He then went on to receive his bachelor's degree from the Pennsylvania State University in business administration, followed by his master's degree in industrial/labor relations and personnel administration from St. Francis University.
In 1997, Mr. Acri was hired by PA Principals Association. During his tenure, he has worked diligently for association members, while forming effective liaisons with legislators in Harrisburg, the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) leadership, the State Board of Education and other education associations.
He has been recognized for his professional achievements over the years with the most recent being the Pennsylvania Middle School Association Advocate for Public Education Award in 2011.
Following retirement, Mr. Acri plans to spend more time pursuing his hobby of restoring cars and traveling. He resides in Enola, Pa., with his wife, Rita, a teacher at East Pennsboro School District. They have two grown daughters, Joanna and Jeannine, who are both teachers.
Joseph P. Acri (left) was honored for his service to the association and his upcoming retirement at PA Principals Association's annual banquet on October 21, 2012, held in conjunction with its state conference in Pittsburgh. Pictured with Mr. Acri is 2011-2012 PA Principals Association President Dr. Barry L. Purvis, principal of human resources at Chambersburg Area School District.
Thursday, December 27, 2012 2:59 PM
The first wave of the winter window of the Keystone Exams administration ended Friday, Dec. 14, 2012. During that wave the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) was able to monitor the administration of the Keystone Exams in many schools across the Commonwealth. One of the concerns PDE heard from Local Education Agencies (LEAs) during the monitoring was that the monitors arrived unannounced. Be advised that all state assessment monitoring visits are unannounced. Also, these unannounced monitoring visits will continue during the second wave of the Keystone Exams winter window, the PSSA window and the spring Keystone Exams window.
Thursday, December 20, 2012 8:22 PM
Secretary of Education Ron Tomalis announced that $479,513 has been awarded to 37 public schools through the Safe Schools Targeted Grant to establish and implement programs to prevent and reduce incidents of violence.
Thursday, December 20, 2012 3:29 PM
The NAESP family continues to mourn the loss of life that resulted from the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School on Friday. As students in Newtown, Connecticut, headed back to school this week, many principals have asked how they and their schools can support Sandy Hook families and the community. For more, click here.
Educational Facilities: Responding to an Active Shooter (Information from the Pennsylvania State Police)
Tuesday, December 18, 2012 1:52 PM
On 12/14/2012, a man forced his way into the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., and killed 20 children and six adults before turning the gun on himself. This horrific event reminds us that active shooters can strike anywhere and at any time. An active shooter is defined as a person who is engaged in killing or attempting to kill individuals in a confined, populated venue. Often, an active shooter's intended targets are randomly selected. The incidents are unpredictable, evolve quickly and are frequently over within 10 to 15 minutes.
This event also reminds us that increased awareness and effective training can make us better prepared if we find ourselves in a situation involving an active shooter. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) provides information regarding how to respond to active shooters for distribution to law enforcement, emergency responders and civilian personnel.
The full document is available at: http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/active_shooter_booklet.pdf. For additional information regarding active shooters, DHS offers online resources, including independent study training, print materials, and a virtual roundtable at: http://www.lpinformation.com/active-shooter. Also, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) offers an independent study course specifically designed for managers and employees. The course can be found at: http://training.fema.gov/EMIWeb/IS/is907.asp.
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