This is a “General Update” edition of the CRSD Snippets. Please visit www.crsd.us for more district news and information.
It is time to develop calendars for upcoming school years. Draft calendars for the 2016-2017 and 2017-2018 school years are available at www.crsd.us along with a form to submit suggestions and comments. When suggesting changes to the draft calendars, please be as specific as possible. Advisory School Boards at each school will also be taking public comment on the draft calendars at one of their upcoming meetings (call the school office for date/time). The Board will consider the comments submitted and make a final draft for adoption during a work session at 5:00PM on March 1, 2016. You are also invited to provide public comment during the regular board meeting.
We are already well into the second semester of the 2015-2016 school year. As usual, the start of a new semester brings a few course changes for high school students during both the Basecamp and Trek portions of the schedule, including the rollover of semester-long classes. Teachers are also using data from the Winter MAP assessments to update learning paths for students. If you have questions regarding classroom instruction or schedules, please contact your child’s teacher. You can also find helpful resources and insights related to e-learning at www.truenorth.crsd.us.
In December, President Obama signed into law a revision of the No Child Left Behind Act, now named the Every Child Succeeds Act (ESSA). Regulations are now being written by the Federal Government which will dictate policies for states and school districts. After the Federal regulations are published, each state will adopt their own regulations to comply with the new law. CRSD staff will work with other school districts and the Alaska Department of Education and Early Development to advocate for regulations that include the flexibility necessary for small rural schools to thrive. In a memo to superintendents, Commissioner Mike Hanley provided clarification for the “process of transition to ESSA for the State of Alaska”, including the following “timeline and transition”:
- The U.S. Department of Education (USDOE) has a year from the date of enactment (December 10, 2015) to issue final regulations.
- ESEA Flexibility Waivers end August 1, 2016.
- Funds for formula programs such as Titles I-A, I-C, I-D, II-A, and III-A provided to districts for activities during the 2016-2017 school year will continue to be administered in accordance with NCLB, not ESSA, based on the FY 2016 Consolidated Appropriations Act passed by Congress.
- The new state-designed accountability systems will take effect at the beginning of the 2017-2018 school year.
Commissioner of the Alaska Department of Education and Early Development (DEED) Mike Hanley announced last week that the Alaska Measures of Progress (AMP) will be replaced in the 2016-2017 school year. Last Spring (2015) students in grades 3-10 took the AMP assessment for the first time. This fall, the DEED experienced unexpected difficulty with the assessment vendor and their ability to provide accurate and timely reports. Parents, students and teachers did not receive results from the Spring computerized assessments until December. Commissioner Hanley stated “After careful consideration, I believe that it is in the best interest of Alaska to consider new assessment structures that better align to instructional needs and are allowable due to changes in federal law.” The press release announcing the change also noted that “In order to meet current state and federal requirements, it will be necessary for the AMP assessment to be given again this spring. However, the department will immediately begin collaborating with stakeholders to determine the assessment approach that will work best for Alaska’s students, and to inform a request-for-proposal process.” CRSD staff will look for opportunities to be involved in the selection process for a new assessment. Within a few weeks, principals and teachers will begin sending home information about this Spring’s (2016) AMP Assessment.
DATES to REMEMBER
Feb. 5-6 – Glennallen/Kenny Lake Hockey Regional Tournament in Fairbanks
Feb. 12 – Teacher Inservice
Feb. 12-13 – GHS Basketball Home Games
Feb. 15 – Artist in Schools Residency at Kenny Lake Begins
Feb. 15 – Semester 2 Trek #1 Begins
Feb. 20 – Kenny Lake Special Olympics
Feb. 29 – Teacher Inservice