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DEED Releases Data on Schools for New Star Rating System

On Friday, August 16, 2013 the Dept. of Education & Early Development released data on Alaska schools under the new star rating system (Alaska School Performance Index – ASPI).  I’ve posted an Excel document with the data for each individual school in the state.  It’s sortable by school, school district, ASPI score, ASPI rating, and all the other categories in the document: http://www.alaskaeducationupdate.com/2013-star-ratings-aspi-schools-just-released-deed

To sort the data, if you are not familiar with Excel, click on “Sort and Filter” then select “Custom Sort.”  Then choose the column by which you would like to sort the document and click “OK.”  The document is 15 pages. Other documents related to the new ASPI rating system can be found at the DEED website: http://education.alaska.gov/aspi/

Main points to remember regarding the new star ratings (ASPI):

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SB 47, SB 62 signed by Governor Parnell

Governor Parnell signed two pieces of education-related legislation today - SB 47 - District-Operated Boarding Schools, and SB 62 - School Construction Grants: Small Municipalities.  Below is the current status of education legislation passed this session:

HR 8 – Task Force on Sustainable Education: transmitted to the governor (no action required by governor on simple resolutions), http://www.legis.state.ak.us/basis/get_bill.asp?session=28&bill=hr+++8

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Language Usage in Social Media

I've always found language usage and how it changes over time/in different circumstances fascinating.  There are two types of linguistics: prescriptive and descriptive.  Prescriptive lingustics is used to teach people how they should speak, and descriptive linguistics is used to describe how people actually speak (http://www.linguistics.ucla.edu/people/schlenker/LING1-06-LN-1A.pdf).  

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Update on Passed Legislation

Below is the current status of the education legislation passed this session:

HR 8 – Task Force on Sustainable Education: transmitted to the governor (no action required by governor on simple resolutions), http://www.legis.state.ak.us/basis/get_bill.asp?session=28&bill=hr+++8

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Education by Fiat - HB 197 assumes that students who can't read to grade level are mentally deficient

On Tuesday, April 2, 2013, Reps. Gabrielle LeDoux, Steve Thompson, Lora Reinbold, and Peggy Wilson introduced HB 197, requiring mandatory retention of third graders not proficient in reading on state assessments.

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HB 151: School Grading Systems and School Improvement

On Wednesday, April 3, 2013 the House Education Committee spent two more hours on HB 151, and the more testimony I hear on the bill, the more it sounds like something that is certainly well-intentioned, but which confuses the issue of school grading with school improvement and would be unworkable for Alaska.  Rep. Paul Seaton, Rep. Peggy Wilson, and Rep. Dan Saddler all sounded pretty skeptical of the efficacy of HB 151, and they all made good points in their discussion of the bill.

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April 1, 2013 Alaska Legislative Update

Members of the conference committee on the operating budget have now been appointed from both the house and senate, so the 24-hour rule is now in effect.  Conference committee members for both HB 65 and HB 66 are: Reps. Austerman, (chair), Stoltze, and Gara, and Sens. Kelly (chair), Meyer, and Hoffman. 

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AASB Article Referenced in the Monday, March 25, 2013 AASB Press Conference

In Monday's press conference, AASB President Sue Hull referenced an article written by Kodiak Island Borough School District Superintendent Stewart McDonald about the situation school districts are currently facing.

CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE BY SUPERINTENDENT MCDONALD

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The Guild System is Alive and Well in Alaska

During the Wednesday, March 13, 2013 House Education Committee hearing on HB 142, Galena Superintendent Chris Reitan said, regarding classes students take, that their boarding school requires four years each of English, math, science, and social studies.  Beyond that, there are elective requirements.  Most areas students focus on fall in to the elective category. He said it's impossible for a student who wants to get the number of hours required by the state for cosmetology, which is 1,650, to do all those hours and meet the other graduation requirements.  

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