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EPLC Education Notebook

Monday, September 12, 2011

In this issue
PENNSYLVANIA POLICYMAKERS
STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION
PENNSYLVANIA DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
US DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
ANNOUNCEMENTS
REPORTS
DATEBOOK

The EPLC Education Notebook (current and past editions) also is available by visiting the EPLC web site at http://www.eplc.org/publications-reports/weekly-policy-notebook/
 

PENNSYLVANIA POLICYMAKERS

 

On September 7 in State College, the Senate Appropriations Committee held the first meeting of a series of public hearings on the role of the Commonwealth's state-related universities and the impact of the state budget on the universities' operations.  Testifying before state lawmakers, Penn State President Graham Spanier gave a brief overview of Penn State's financial situation.  Speaking on the impact of the state budget, President Spanier explained that the state appropriation has failed to keep pace with inflation, having remained flat or decreased over the past several years, which is why tuition and fees have had to increase. He further noted that "Although multiple sources of revenue support Penn State's mission of teaching, research and service, it is the state appropriation that moderates the cost of attendance for in-state students, as well as the agricultural research and Cooperative Extension programs that contribute so much to Pennsylvania's economy." 


According to President Spanier, Penn State directly impacts one in two Pennsylvania households through teaching, research and service; serves 96,000 students; employs 24,500 full-time and 22,600 part-time faculty, staff and student employees; and generates more than $17 billion annually in direct, indirect and induced economic impact for the Commonwealth.

 

STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION

On September 7, the State Board of Education's Advisory Committee on School Safety Reporting and Responsemet in Harrisburg to review a draft of the memorandum of understanding that will be considered at the November 16 meeting of the State Board.

The work of the advisory committee is directed by Act 104 of 2010 which requires the State Board of Education to promulgate regulations that provide a model memorandum of understanding between school entities and local police departments.  In addition, the act requires the board to establish protocols for certain offenses which occur on school property, handling emergency and nonemergency responses by police, and establishing procedures for the response and handling of students with disabilities.  For more information, including the authorizing legislation and membership, click here.

PENNSYLVANIA DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION


Earlier this month, the Pennsylvania Department of Education announced that three Pennsylvania Summer Food Service Programs -  the Pine Valley Bible Camp (Ellwood City, PA); the Greater Susquehanna Valley YMCA (Milton, PA); and the University of Pennsylvania, Fox Leadership Program (Philadelphia, PA) - have received the Summer Champion Award issued by the US Department of Agriculture.  The Summer Food Service Program provides federal funding to non-profit organizations that provide nutritious meals to children under the age of 18 years during the summer months.  Nonprofit organizations that would like to sponsor a summer food service program in the future may contact PDE's Summer Food Service Program at 1-800-331-0129.  

 

For more information on the summer meals program, visit www.pasummermeals.com.

US DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION 

         The Equity and Excellence Commission will meet on September 23 from 9:00 AM to 5:30 PM in Washington, DC.  The purpose of the Commission is to collect information, including broad public input, regarding how the federal government can increase educational opportunity by improving school funding equity.   According to the announcement in the Federal Register, the agenda for the September 23 meeting will include finalizing the outline of the report, discussion of particular language for certain portions of the report, and reaching a consensus on particular recommendations.  There will be no public comment period during this meeting; however, individuals wishing to provide comments may contact the Commission via email at equitycommission@ed.gov.  For more information on the Commission's activities, including transcripts and minutes from past meetings, click here.

 

         Final Regulations for the Early Intervention Program under Part C of the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) were released by the US Department of Education (USDE) on September 6.  These final regulations are intended to improve services and outcomes for infants and children with disabilities and their families.  Part C is a $436 million program administered by the states that serves infants and toddlers through age 2 with developmental delays or who have diagnosed physical or mental conditions with high probabilities of resulting in developmental delays.   To view the Part C regulations, click here.  The regulations should be published in the Federal Register in the next few weeks.

 

In addition, the USDE also released a notice of proposed rulemaking to amend the IDEA Part B regulations.  The proposed amendments to Part B pertain to when a state or local educational agency seeks to use a child's or parent's public benefits or insurance (e.g. Medicaid) to pay for Part B services.  Click here to view the Part B proposed rulemaking notice.

 

To see what's new in the USDE Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) click here.

 

         The USDE has announced a new web page designed to assist teachers and others seeking resources for teaching about the September 11 attacks on America.  Materials identified on the website were developed by federal agencies or federal grantees. 

ANNOUNCEMENTS


The State Board of Education will being holding School Library Study Roundtables on
September 13 (Allentown, PA), September 15 (Harrisburg, PA) and September 20 (Erie, PA). Click here for details.


September 11-17
is National Arts in Education Week.  In July 2010, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a resolution declaring the week following the second Sunday of September as "Arts in Education Week." For more information on how to draw attention to arts education in your school, click here. 

 
The Education Voters PA will be hosting "a civic dialogue on public education" on Tuesday, September 20 (6 PM to 8 PM) in Shippensburg, PA.  Please visit www.educationvoterspa.org for more information or to RSVP.

 
Education Week will be hosting a webinar "Reaching Students with Special Needs through E-learning" on Tuesday, September 20from 2:00 PM- 3:00 PM.  For more information, click here 

REPORTS

 

On September 2, the USDE Institute of Education Sciences (IES) along with the National Center for Special Education Research released a report  on post-high school outcomes of young adults with disabilities based on data from the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2.  The report includes postsecondary enrollment rates; employment rates; engagement in employment, education, and/or job training activities; household circumstances (e.g., residential independence, parenting status); and social and community involvement.  Among the key findings:

 

  • Fifty-five percent of young adults with disabilities reported having continued on to postsecondary school since leaving high school.  They were less likely to enroll in postsecondary school, however, than were their same-age peers in the general population, of whom 62 percent ever had attended postsecondary school.
     
  • Seventy-one percent of students with disabilities were reported to have a paid job at the time of the interview other than work around the house.  They were as likely to have a paid job at the time of the interview as were their same age peers in the general population, of whom 71 percent reported currently having a paid job.
  • Eighty-five percent of students with disabilities were reported to be productively engaged in the community either through being engaged in employment, postsecondary education, or job training since leaving high school.  They were less likely to engage in these activities than were their same-age peers in the general population, of whom 95 percent reported being engaged in employment, postsecondary education, or job training since leaving high school.
  • Thirty-six percent of young adults with disabilities were reported to be living independently at the time of the interview. Young adults were considered to be living independently if they were living alone or with a spouse, partner, or roommate. Young adults with disabilities were less likely to be living independently than were their same-age peers in the general population, of whom 44 percent were reported to be living independently at the time of the interview.
  • At the time of the interview, 60 percent of young adults with disabilities had a checking account, and 45 percent had a credit card in his or her name. They were less likely to have a checking account or credit card than were their same-age peers in the general population, of whom 71 percent and 55 percent, respectively, reported to have achieved this level of financial independence.

To read the full text of the report, click here.

DATEBOOK

 

The Senate Appropriations Committee will hold a public hearing on the impact of the FY 2011-2012 General Appropriations Act and other various topics on Monday, September 12 at 1:00 PM in Pittsburgh. 

 

The State Board of Education will be holding a roundtable discussion on the School Library Study on September 13 in Allentown.  For more information, click here.

 

The State Board of Education will meet September 20-21 in Erie. 

 

The Senate Education Committee will hold a public hearing on Senate Bill 1225 (Library Code Reform) on Wednesday, September 21 at 10:30 AM in Harrisburg.

The Senate Education Committee will hold a public hearing to receive testimony from Secretary of Education Ronald Tomalis on the results of the Pennsylvania Department of Education's investigation and analysis of 2009 PSSA testing anomalies on Wednesday, October 19 at10:30 AM.

For information on upcoming events, please visit www.eplc.org and click on "Events Calendar".
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EPLC Education Notebook is published by The Education Policy and Leadership Center (EPLC).  Permission to reprint or electronically redistribute the Notebook in whole or in part is granted provided attribution to EPLC is provided.  The Education Policy and Leadership Center is an independent, non-partisan and not-for-profit organization.  The Mission of the Education Policy and Leadership Center is to encourage and support the development and implementation of effective state-level education policies to improve student learning in grades P-12, increase the effective operation of schools, and enhance educational opportunities for citizens of all ages.