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The Board of Regents has asked the New York State Education Department (NYSED) to host a Learning Summit on teacher and principal evaluation on Thursday, May 7. At the live webcast event, the Board and NYSED will hear recommendations from experts and stakeholders. Details about the Learning Summit are available here.


This edition of News and Notes also features several videos:

Finally, we share updates from the New York State Library, including a video contest winner and helpful resources for the Summer Reading program.

Learning Summit to be held on Thursday, May 7



The Board of Regents has asked the New York State Education Department (NYSED) to host a Learning Summit on teacher and principal evaluation. The event will be webcast live from the Carole Huxley Theater in the New York State Museum on Thursday, May 7.  Invited participants include statewide parent, teacher, principal, superintendent, and school board member organizations, as well as practitioners and experts in the fields of education, economics, and psychometrics. These stakeholders and experts will provide recommendations to NYSED and the Board in the areas required by the new statute to be addressed through Commissioner's Regulations, including, but not limited to:
  • Scoring ranges for the subcomponents of the Student Performance and Observation categories;
  • Weights among the subcomponents of the Student Performance and Observation categories;
  • Parameters for appropriate student growth targets for subcomponents of Student Performance category;
  • Parameters for optional locally-selected State-designed supplemental assessments;
  • Minimum number of annual observations, including frequency, duration, and any other parameters;
  • Observation rubrics;
  • Alignment of the principal evaluation system to the new teacher evaluation system established in Education Law §3012-d;
  • Parameters of potential waivers from the general prohibition against assigning a student to a teacher rated Ineffective for two consecutive schools years;
  • The extent to which provisions in Education Law §3012-c should apply to the new evaluation system;
  • Hardship waivers for the November 15, 2015 plan approval deadline; and
  • Other relevant comments and recommendations.

Public comments and recommendations on the evaluation law can be submitted at eval2015@nysed.gov.

Please visit NYSED.gov on May 7 to tune in to the webcast.

State Education Department to Distribute $15.6 Million

The New York State Education Department (SED) announced federal approval of New York's plan to distribute $15.6 million in unspent Race to the Top (RTTT) funds to local school districts to purchase instructional technology equipment and to upgrade regional technology infrastructure. Click here for more information.

Grades 3-8 Assessment Data to be Released July 1

The State Education Department announced that, in response to feedback and requests from teachers, principals, and superintendents, instructional reports for the 2015 Grades 3-8 English Language Arts (ELA) and math assessments will be released earlier than ever before. A July 1, 2015 release will allow schools and districts to use this information for summer curriculum writing and professional development.


Click here for more information.

Network Team Institute Tribute

As more than 900 educators from across New York State gathered for the final Network Team Institute (NTI) in March 2015, they reflected on the conference benefits. In total, 26 'NTIs' were held in Albany, with a combined attendance of over 15,000 educators over four years. NTI was a training program for representatives from school-based Network Teams or BOCES-based Network Teams, school leaders, and teacher ambassadors. Network Team Institutes provided an opportunity for participants to work with each other and experts in the field in order to implement the goals of the Race To The Top Initiative.


Click here to watch the video.

NTI participants
Video: "He does see the real life connections" - NY mom

Virginia Johnson has noticed a difference in the skills her son is learning with higher standards in English class. Caleb, a high school student at the Dansville Central School District in New York's Finger Lakes Region, is working on close reading of non-fiction texts to find evidence that support claims with real life implications. For instance, in Ms. Wolf's 9th grade ELA class, students were constructing argumentative essays to identify who bears responsibility for ethically manufactured goods, in countries like Bangladesh. Listen to why Caleb thinks these skills are important for life beyond school.


Click here to watch the video. 


students working
Video Series: Ensuring Equitable Access to the Most Effective Educators

The Board of Regents was presented with new evaluation and talent management analytics that explore issues surrounding equitable access. Helpful resources from the meeting include the Board of Regents Item and the Board of Regents presentationThese findings support the important work being done under the Strengthening Teacher and Leader Effectiveness (STLE) grant program to close student achievement gaps and to improve the quality, quantity and diversity of the workforce.


A new video collection provides insight into the ways Greece Central Schools and Huntington Union Free School District are using comprehensive talent management systems and career ladder pathways to help ensure all students have equitable access to the type of educators that are making a difference in our students' lives.


To learn more about talent management systems and career ladder pathways be sure to visit the Improving Practice page on EngageNY.org.


Watch the video collection here


educators discussing equity
News from the New York State Library

The school year may be coming to a close, but the reading doesn't have to stop.  Encourage your students to participate in the New York State summer reading program, Summer Reading at New York Libraries, through their local public library.


This year's theme is Every Hero Has a Story! Please check out the following resources:

2015 Summer Reading Teen Video Challenge Winner


Congratulations to the winner of the 2015 Teen Video Challenge for New York State is "Unmask Your Imagination." This video was created by Athena Summers, and includes performances by Emma Wilson. The video was submitted by the DeWitt Community Library in DeWitt, New York.


The New York State winning and finalist videos are featured on the Summer Reading at New York Libraries website.