In this meeting, the Utah State Board of Education:
- Appointed a working group to study options for a request for proposals for assessing Utah’s computer-adaptive tests.
- Preliminarily approved changes to Utah’s math core curriculum to bring it in alignment with Utah’s core standards.
- Preliminarily approved changes to Utah’s eminence rules allowing greater flexibility for public schools to obtain qualified educators.
Board Meeting Summary
March 2, 2012 Meeting
Board Appoints Group to Study RFP for Utah Assessments
The Utah State Board of Education appointed a work group to study issuing a request for proposal to assess Utah students on computer-adaptive testing. The group includes local school board representatives from the Canyon and Sevier school districts, district representatives from the Alpine, Juab, Davis, Duchesne, and Washington school districts as well as representatives from charter schools and the Utah State Office of Education.
For more information contact:
Judy Park, Associate Superintendent for Student Services and Federal Programs, 801-538-7550.
Board Takes Positions on Two Bills before the Legislature
The Utah State Board of Education took the following positions on pending legislation:
- Support HB156 Public Education Program Amendments (M. Newbold) with the comment that it is already possible to test out of the required financial literacy graduation requirement.
- Support SB178S1 Statewide Online Education Program Amendments (H. Stephenson), but only if the program retains the Electronic High School.
For more information contact:
Carol Lear, School Law & Legislation Director, 801-538-7835.
Martell Menlove, Deputy Superintendent, 801-538-7762.
Board Preliminarily Approves Amendments to 10 Rules; Preliminarily Repeals Another
The Utah State Board of Education gave preliminary approval to the following proposed amended rules. Final approval will likely come during the Board’s April 13 meeting.
- R277-483 Persistently Dangerous Schools. Some minor changes are being made to wording following a routine review of the rule.
- R277-700 Elementary and Secondary School Core Curriculum. The mathematics curriculum is being updated to be aligned with the Utah Core Standards.
- R277-733 Adult Education Programs. This rule is being amended to deal with carryover funds and fund balances.
- R277-420 Aiding Financially Distressed School Districts. This rule is being amended to update some terminology.
- R277-486 Professional Staff Cost Program. This rule is being amended to update some terminology.
- R277-104 USOE and USOR ADA Complaint Procedure and R280-201 USOR ADA Complaint Procedure. R277-104 is being repealed and reenacted and R280-201 is being repealed to update Americans With Disabilities Act complaints within the Utah State Office of Education and the Utah State Office of Rehabilitation.
- R277-503 Licensing Routes. This rule is being amended to extend eminence letter of authorization in certain circumstances and adds levels to competency-based licenses.
- R277-520-6 Eminence. This rule is being amended to allow for an extended eminence letter of authorization for educators.
- R277-507 Driver Education Endorsement. This rule is being continued following a routine five-year review.
- R277-419-7 Pupil Accounting, Student Identification and Tracking. This rule is being amended to emphasize that every student that enters a school within the public education system is immediately assigned a unique student identifier.
For more information contact:
judy [dot] park[at]schools [dot] utah [dot] gov(Judy Park), Associate Superintendent for Student Services and Federal Programs, 801-538-7550.
todd [dot] hauber[at]schools [dot] utah [dot] gov(Todd Hauber), Associate Superintendent for Business and Operations, 801-538-7514.
brenda [dot] hales[at]schools [dot] utah [dot] gov(Brenda Hales), Associate Superintendent for Instructional Services, 801-538-7515.
martell [dot] menlove[at]schools [dot] utah [dot] gov(Martell Menlove), Deputy Superintendent, 801-538-7762.
Board Honors Utah’s Title I National Distinguished Schools
The Utah State Office of Education honored Iron School District‘s Three Peaks Elementary and Logan School District‘s Bridger Elementary, both of which were recently named 2011 National Title I Distinguished Schools.
Three Peaks Elementary is located in Iron County just north of Cedar City. Principal Tim Taylor has led the school with a strong academic and high student academic performance focus. Three Peaks Elementary has been among the top performing Title I schools for more than five years. On the state core assessments for 2011-12, Three Peaks scored 94% proficient in math, which was top ten in the state for all schools, and 90% proficient in reading.
Three Peaks is considered a K-5 mature Response to Intervention (RTI) school. After four years of RTI, the schools is participating in a national RTI study with Stanford University, providing them with detailed student data, and teacher survey information. Three Peaks Elementary has also formed a partnership with the University of Utah Reading Clinic for Tier 2 interventions. (Early Steps, Next Steps, and Higher Steps) and are participating in a research study with the clinic to test the effectiveness of instructional delivery.
Parent involvement at Three Peaks is fantastic. The school has logged over 3,000 volunteer hours each year and the PTA funds a visual arts specialist for all grades. 100 % parent participation in all SEP conferences has been maintained for the past four years. This has become the expectation at the school.
In addition to the above mentioned visual arts program, the school also boasts of a school orchestra that has 70 strings students in grades 2 through 5 and a choir has over 100 students in grades 1 through 6.
Bridger Elementary School is one of six elementary schools in the Logan City School District, which surrounds the picturesque campus of Utah State University. Principal David Long has led the school in a focused effort to improve student achievement. For the past two years the school has been recognized for closing the achievement gap among its students. Eighty percent of the students live in apartments and condominiums and as a result, there has been a constant flow to the school population. Most years the school faces nearly a fifty percent turnover in the student population with two hundred and forty-nine students leaving or entering in 2011.
Students come from all walks of life. Some are refugees from Haiti, Somalia, Burma, and other places around the globe. Some are part of immigrant families from Mexico, all parts of Central and South America, Africa, the Marshal Islands, and Southeast Asia. Some students are the children of university students in both graduate and undergraduate programs. Some students are the children of migrant workers, factory workers, and other laborers. One fifth of the students in the school are English Language Learners. Families here struggle financially as well, which results in nearly eighty percent of the students receiving free and reduced lunch.
Professional development for the teachers has focused on professional learning communities, English language learner strategies, the district literacy model, responsive school teams, and writing strategies. Thinking Maps and piloting Math In Focus this year has brought added opportunity to explore Singapore math strategies.
Bridger Elementary consistently scores well above the state averages in reading and math generally, but the progress scores show the students gaining more than a year and a half in academic ability in each given school year. Beyond the recognitions, story after story exists of individual students who have changed their lives by making achievements many thought they would never be able to manage. The hope at Bridger Elementary is to make a difference in the lives of each student whether they are at the school for a few weeks or a few years.
Board Approves Consent Calendar
The Board approved its consent calendar.