State Board of Education Meeting Summary
This month, at the State Board of Education meeting, Delaware Department of Education officials provided updates and presentations on DCAS and the Partnership Zone, as well as a charter schools update; the board voted on the student growth measurement in DPAS II.
Dr. Mike Stetter, Director of Accountability Resources, discussed the status of DCAS in its second year. He announced that the number of students who took the DCAS exam at the beginning of this school year greatly improved from last year’s assessment. In addition, the alternate assessment was administered for the first time. Over 970 students qualified to take this assessment and over 600 teachers were trained to administer the exam. End of Course Assessments in Biology, US History, Mathematics (Algebra and Integrated Math II), and English II will be administered in the spring, at the completion of the course. This is the first year for EOC assessments, which provide additional standardized measures for these subjects. Delaware students will be taking the next DCAS exam, starting on December 5.
We provided a Partnership Zone update in a recent blog post, but there were a few additional Partnership Zone developments in Noreen LaSorsa’s (Chief Officer of the DDOE’s School Turnaround Unit) presentation to the Board. Of note, the Unit has built a relationship with family engagement personnel from the Chicago Public Schools, hosting visits in Delaware to speak to PZ schools.
The Board voted and passed DPAS II regulations that include revising language to reflect DCAS as the new state assessment, revising the definition of “Highly Effective,” and asserting that the DDOE will monitor the evaluation implementation. The new evaluation revisions, centered on Component 5, will include student-growth measurements and are expected to be published and finalized in the coming spring and summer.
The charter school report to the Board by John Carwell, head of the Charter Schools Program, stated that the office is providing a new support program this school year. The program is focused on curriculum instruction and assessment for first year and struggling charter schools. The office conducts site visits and analyzes data with DDOE’s Office of Accountability. Carwell expects at least five new charter school applications by the end of the calendar year.
Lastly, the Board voted to publish the Professional Standards Board’s new Emergency Certificate. The Emergency Certificate would be valid only for one school year with an extension of one year. Currently, the regulation can be extended for a second and third year. The extension requires documented progress toward earning a standard certificate and a teacher evaluation rating of highly effective on their DPAS II summative evaluation. The Emergency Certificate also has a parental notification component. This amendment aligns with the state’s efforts to ensure that high-quality teachers are in every classroom. The certification will be on the Board’s agenda at the next meeting on December 15th.