Monday, November 25, 2013

National PTA & Common Core State Standards

National PTA is uniquely positioned to be an influential and credible voice in advancing the Common Core State Standards (CCSSI). The CCSSI is a joint effort led by the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices and the Council of Chief State School Officers to develop a common core of K-12 standards in English language arts and Mathematics. The goal initiative is to develop internationally-benchmarked standards that ensure all students are held to consistent expectations that will prepare them for college and career.

To date, over 45 states have adopted the standards, in addition to the District of Columbia, Guam, American Samoan Islands, U.S. Virgin Islands and the Anchorage, AK School District.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

WSPTA Legislative Director Sherry Krainick Testifies at Quality Educaton Council Meeting

The Quality Education Council (QEC) met in Olympia on November 18, 2013.  This was the third of four meetings to be held this fall by the QEC as they prepare their report to the 2014 legislature.  Washington State PTA Legislative Director, Sherry Krainick has attended each of the meetings and provided testimony on behalf of Washington State PTA at the November 18, 2013 meeting.  The meeting can be viewed on TVW here.

Topics covered at this meeting included an update on SB 5491, 24 Credit diploma, Innovative Schools, ESEA Waiver and revisions to TPEP, and Standards implementation (Common Core State Standards – CCSS and Next Generation Science Standards - NGSS).  In addition, the committee discussed Professional Learning as it relates to TPEP, CCSS, and NGSS, Compensation, Technology Readiness, Capital Needs and the Funding Plan.    Discussion included the possibility of adding Learning Improvement Days (LID) as professional development for teachers.

Monday, November 18, 2013

National PTA Applauds Bi-Partisan Legislation to Expand Access to High-Quality Early Learning Programs

This week, the Strong Start for America’s Children Act of 2013 was introduced in the House and Senate as a means to ensure that every child has access to high-quality early education.
“The education of our nation’s children must begin long before they enter school as research shows that providing effective, targeted supports and interventions to children and parents starting at birth will better prepare them for academic and career success,” said Otha Thornton, National PTA President. “National PTA applauds this bi-partisan legislation and encourages the House and Senate to take swift action to move forward the issue of early childhood education to expand access to high-quality programs for all children.”

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Endorsing Initiatives

A fellow PTA member is gathering signatures for Initiative 594 which would increase background checks on gun sales.  She has requested that I set out the signature sheet at our next general PTA meeting.  She said the PTA was in support of this initiative.  Although I might be personally in favor of this initiative, I'm reluctant to bring anything political into our meeting.  However, if it is done unobtrusively it might be ok to have it at the meeting?