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ED Review - August 2, 2002
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08/02/02 ED Review
 08/02/02
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NCLB Update: Adequate yearly progress
English language learners
Revised recognition program
Healthy start, grow smart
Funding allocations
Table builder
Quote to noter
Upcoming Events

NCLB Update: Adequate yearly progress
For the most recent news and information, visit http://www.nochildleftbehind.gov/. (For example, yesterday, the Department released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for Title I, Parts A, B, C, D, and E, including accountability and Adequate Yearly Progress. This notice, available at http://www.ed.gov/offices/OESE/asst.html, will be posted in the Federal Register early next week. All comments must be received by September 5.)

In a recent letter to state and local leaders (http://www.ed.gov/News/Letters/020724.html), Secretary Paige outlined the critical Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) provisions of the No Child Left Behind Act. Each state must establish a definition of AYP to use annually to determine the achievement of school districts and schools. That definition, due at the beginning of 2003 (although those states applying for State-Flex will have to submit definitions this fall), will be peer reviewed by a panel with representatives from state and local education agencies, teachers, and parents. Among the criteria:

  • A single, statewide accountability system is applied to all (Title I and non-Title I) public school districts and schools.
  • All public school students, regardless of mobility, are included in the system.
  • The definition is based on expectations for student achievement growth that is continuous and substantial, such that all students are proficient in both reading and math no later than 2013-14.
  • A state makes annual decisions about achievement. (A state may calculate AYP using up to three consecutive years of data, but even if a state chooses to average data over two or three years, it must still determine whether a school district or school made AYP each year.)
  • All public school districts and schools are held accountable for the achievement of individual subgroups, including students in major racial or ethnic groups, economically disadvantaged students, limited English proficient students, and students with disabilities. Decisions must be based on the achievement of each subgroup, as well as on overall achievement.
  • The definition is based primarily on the state's academic assessments. AYP must also include graduation rates for high schools and an additional indicator for middle and elementary schools.
  • A state's accountability system is statistically valid and reliable.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE GO TO http://www.nclb.gov/start/facts/yearly.html. (Note: Undersecretary of Education Gene Hickok discussed AYP during his July 24 committee testimony on the implementation of the No Child Left Behind Act, http://www.ed.gov/Speeches/07-2002/07242002.html.)

Meanwhile, non-regulatory guidance is available on the Unsafe School Choice Option, which requires each state receiving federal funds to establish and implement a policy allowing students attending a persistently dangerous public school (or students who are victims of a violent criminal offense while in or on the grounds of a public school that they attend) to attend a safe public school. FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE GO TO http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/osdfs/resources.html.

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English language learners
Today, Secretary Paige, U.S. Representative Connie Morella, and leading researchers and experts met to discuss the current scientific findings on teaching children whose first language is not English. "Over the past two decades, America's schools have welcomed over five million students who are not native English speakers," the Secretary said. "Nineteen states have reported an increase of more than 50 percent in English language learners over the last three years -- and that growth is expected to continue." Research is already underway that will study more than 5,400 children at multiple sites in eight states. The initiative addresses three overarching issues: how children whose first language is Spanish learn to read and write in English; why some of these children have difficulties acquiring these skills; and which instructional strategies and approaches, under what conditions, are most beneficial to which children. The initiative also addresses the teacher knowledge required to ensure strong outcomes. FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE GO TO http://www.ed.gov/PressReleases/08-2002/08022002.html.

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Revised recognition program
The Education Department's long-standing Blue Ribbon School recognition program is undergoing some changes to better reflect the goals of the No Child Left Behind Act. The new program requires schools to meet either of two assessment criteria: (1) schools that have at least 40 percent of their students from disadvantaged backgrounds that dramatically improve student performance in accordance with state assessment systems or (2) schools that score in the top 10 percent on state assessments. In addition, of the schools submitted by each state for national recognition, at least 50 percent must meet the first criterion. The Secretary expects to send a letter of invitation to state chiefs and the Council for American Private Education (CAPE) on November 4. FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE GO TO http://www.ed.gov/offices/OERI/BlueRibbonSchools/. (Note: Both elementary and secondary schools will be recognized in the same year, rather than alternating years.)

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Healthy start, grow smart
Seeking advice on raising a newborn child? The Departments of Education, Agriculture, and Health and Human Services have revised a series of useful booklets first developed by First Lady Laura Bush and the Texas Department of Health. "Your Newborn" walks parents and other caregivers through such topics as Checkups and Shots, Wonders of the Brain, and Ways to Soothe Your Baby. Separate booklets are available for one-month-old, two-months-old, and three-months-old babies. FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE GO TO http://www.ed.gov//parents/earlychild/ready/healthystart/.

Also: The Department has awarded seven grants under the Preschool Curriculum Evaluation Research Grants Program to conduct research on the effectiveness of preschool curricula. According to Assistant Secretary for Educational Research and Improvement Grover "Russ" Whitehurst, "Results should help educators and parents make more informed choices of classroom curricula." FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE GO TO http://www.ed.gov/PressReleases/07-2002/07252002.html. (Note: The schedule for Early Childhood Educator Academies, cited in the previous issue, is now live at http://www.ed.gov/offices/OESE/earlychildhood/eceacademy.html.)

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Funding allocations
A new Microsoft Access research file -- originally prepared for Congress -- offers various No Child Left Behind funding allocations for the 2002-03 school year by state, school district, and congressional district. Simply follow the online instructions to download, extract, and access the database. FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE GO TO http://www.nclb.gov/next/stats/.

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Table builder
The Department's National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) has unveiled a tool that creates customized tables of Common Core of Data (CCD) for states, counties, MSAs, school districts, and schools -- using data from multiple years. The CCD consists of three categories of information: descriptive data on schools and school districts; data on students and staff; and fiscal data. FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE GO TO http://nces.ed.gov/ccd/bat/.

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Quote to note
"Implementing No Child Left Behind involves more than just issuing regulations, reviewing applications, and making the grants. It really means bringing the whole country together around the idea that, if we are to continue to flourish as a nation, no child really can be left behind, that it is time to stop making excuses for educational failure, and time to use the framework provided by this legislation to get on with what we have to do. Toward that end, we have communicated continually with governors, Chief State School Officers, school superintendents, teachers, parents, business leaders, and the general public on this act and on the vision that it embodies." -- Undersecretary of Education Gene Hickok (7/24/02)

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Upcoming Events
On August 5, the Department's Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE) will host a briefing for parents and parents groups in Washington, DC. Senior officials and practitioners will be on hand to highlight the opportunities for schools and families to come together to ensure success for all children. FOR MORE INFORMATION, CALL 1-800-USA-LEARN.

Don't forget! In October, OESE has also scheduled a series of Student Achievement and School Accountability conferences. The governor and Chief State School Officer of each state will nominate teams of 10 to 15 state and district-level education leaders to participate in the appropriate region: Orlando, FL (2-4), Washington, DC (7-9), Denver, CO (23-25), and Chicago, IL (28-30). FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE GO TO http://www.ed.gov/offices/OESE/SASA/conference.html.

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Credits
Please feel free to contact the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs with any questions:
Deputy Assistant Secretary -- Linda Wilson, (202) 401-0404, Linda.Wilson@ed.gov
Program Analyst -- Adam Honeysett, (202) 401-3003, Adam.Honeysett@ed.gov
To be added or removed from distribution, or submit comments (we welcome your feedback!), please contact Adam Honeysett. Or, visit http://www.ed.gov/news/newsletters/.


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Last Modified: 09/17/2003