SBE Community Forum at ESD 112 in Vancouver
Please join Board members for an open discussion about important topics such as strategies for closing the achievement gap, standards, and assessment, November 8 at Educational Service District 112, in Vancouver. If a quorum of Board members are present, this will be a public meeting per RCW 42.30.030.
Tuesday November 8, 2016 from 5:00 PM to 6:30 PM PST (Public) with sessions on Nov 9th and 10th as well
ESD 112, Klickitat/Skamania Room 2500 NE 65th Avenue Vancouver, WA 98661
We got wind of the WEA’s and VEA’s strategy and tactics for members attending the meeting. We thought you might find it interesting what the Teachers Union(s) want to accomplish:
—– Original message —–
From: “Cindy Brown [WA]” <CBrown@WashingtonEA.org>
Subject: SBE Community Forum at ESD 112 in Vancouver
Date: Mon, 31 Oct 2016
Dear VEA leaders,
This is a great opportunity to provide information to the SBE via informal table talk with regards to ESSA, SBAC testing, resources, class size, etc. Please understand that this is not on public record and is in addition to those providing official testimony on Wednesday. You do not need to RSVP. Please see more details below. Thank you!
Below is a link to an invitation from the State Board of Education to attend an informal meeting from 5:30 – 7 p.m. at the Vancouver ESD on November 8th (yes it IS election night).
The Board will be interested in the community’s thoughts about how to improve our education system, especially the accountability and assessment system, as the state gets close to finalizing a state plan for the implementation of the new federal ESSA law.
Our WEA liaison to SBE and lobbyist, Wendy Rader-Konofalski, has provided some ideas below of how you might engage the board members around the new ESSA plan and the possibilities it provides. This is more of a conversation, but you can really target it toward the things that matter most to you and your students. The Board members may not yet know a great deal about what the ESSA plan includes so if they say they don’t know the answer to the questions, then just go ahead and use the issue to give some thoughts and tell some stories about your kids and your work with them.
1.) How does the new plan address the funding and resource needs of our schools? Give some examples of how the hopes and dreams of teachers and counselors is to spend more time with struggling students and each and every kid–but the reality is that is impossible given the staffing crisis, the class sizes, the lack of whatever you are lacking in your school.
2.) How does the new plan address the reduction of tests or the reduction of the stress and anxiety of students because the state SBA has such high stakes for kids? Why doesn’t the SBE address the issue of our students’ civil rights to have equitable instructional time and supports–in a testing system where if a kid fails the high school SBA, they are subjected to more and more tests, COEs, time out of class rather than time to improve skills, take electives, successfully finish coursework, etc. Why does SBE agree to delink the biology EoC tests, but not all the state tests?
3.) Is the state going to take advantage of the flexibility that ESSA provides for districts to choose other tests that the SBA as the high school test? Give some of your own ideas about why that might be a positive thing–as long as whatever test is used (SAT or ACT or whatever) is not used as a graduation requirement.
4.) How is this new plan providing more innovation to schools and significantly changing the approach to include options to engage all our students in all their areas of interest–even if not the tested areas? This could give you an opportunity to talk about how the focus on testing, exacerbated by the accountability system’s focus on tests and the high stakes grad. requirement, narrows the curriculum and makes some kids lose hope and encouragement to stay in school.
If you can go, that would be great. If you have any questions about talking points, please contact Wendy at: wrader-konofalski@