State Board Updates
Acting Commissioner Schundler Attends January State Board Meeting
Acting Commissioner Bret Schundler attended the January 20 meeting of the New Jersey State Board of Education. Schundler reinforced his belief about New Jerse’s educational excellence and his intent to work together with stakeholders. Deputy Commissioner Willa Spicer also announced that she will be remaining onboard for the time being and provided some background on the Department’s Race to the Top Application. Regulations associated with an expedited charter school application process were approved by the Board. The process by which the State Board would review and potentially adopt the Language Arts and Math common core standards was also discussed.
New Jersey State Board Meeting Wednesday — 09/16/09
The New Jersey State Board of Education met on Sept 16th. Among the items approved for adoption were the Core Curriculum Content Standards for Social Studies and the new School Leadership Licensure Assessment Test for the Principal endorsement. The Board also reviewed: the Student Transportation regulations; modification of the current certificate requirements for out of state teachers; re-adoption of the current NJQSAC regulations without change; and an expedited approval process for Charter School applications.
New Jersey State Board Meeting Wednesday — 05/20/09
Fiscal Accountability, Efficiency and Budgeting Procedures
The Department is proposing to repeal the Finance and Business Services rules at N.J.A.C. 6A:23, and recodify with amendments the rules therein as additional subsections of the new Financial Accountability, Efficiency and Budgeting chapter at N.J.A.C. 6A:23A. This rulemaking, which establishes the new rules as subchapters 16 through 22 at N.J.A.C. 6A:23A, is necessary as the result of the passage of the School Funding Reform Act, P.L. 2008, c.37 and several fiscal accountability laws including P.L. 2007, c.53, which established school efficiency requirements, including travel restrictions, c.62, which established the tax levy cap law, and c. 63, which established the position and expanded responsibilities of the Executive County Superintendent positions.
New Jersey State Board Meeting Wednesday — 04/15/09
Work Session: Special Review Assessment (SRA)
- Current SRA context
- The SRA has been around since the late 1980’s
- The SRA is for students who have not yet passed one or both areas of the HSPA
- The SRA is state developed but locally administered
- What has prompted a lot of attention is that in some schools, a majority of seniors graduate via the SRA
- On March 19, 2008, the State Board adopted DOE’s proposal to improve the SRA by strengthening the SRA administration process
- NJDOE progress since 2008:
- collected data about 2007-2008 SRA usage
- interviewed students and teachers about the SRA process
- established SRA Advisory Committee to consider plans for improving the SRA
- consulted with testing vendors
- developed plans for 2009-2010
New Jersey State Board Meeting Wednesday — 03/18/09
- Monitoring of School districts via QSAC reports
- Deputy Commissioner Willa Spicer said that scores for the second round of school districts that were evaluated are better than those in the first round. She expects that as more districts become familiar with the QSAC process and reporting requirements, etc. this trend will continue and school district scores will continue to improve in the later rounds of evaluations.
- American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009
- Deputy Commissioner Spicer stated that the Department does not yet have specific instructions for use or accountability with respect to these funds and they will not be putting out a report until they have all the data and necessary information.
- First wave of Title I money comes in by end of March, second part comes in July.
- First wave of IDEA comes in by end of March, second part comes in July.
- Title I and IDEA funds are distributed by formulas set by feds. State is involved in how to make sure they and districts are completely accountable for how these funds are spent.
- Competitive money/grants will be available in fall. Guidance on this should be available in summer. Dept will begin to collect ideas on how to use that money in the next month or so.