Virginia ASCD
2516 Old Lynchburg Road
North Garden, VA 22959
(434) 466-7466
(540) 832-7666 (fax)

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Advancing Excellence in Teaching, Learning and Leadership
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Upcoming Events-

Coming this Fall!
Love Rick Wormeli??
So do we! 
Bring your team to 
Fair Isn't Always Equal!
September 12 - Richmond
Building Mathematical Thinking Kindergarten Through Algebra: Strategies for Teachers
Oct 2 and 23 - Lynchburg
Oct 4 and 27 - Abingdon 
Communicating, Collaborating, Coaching: How Great Instructional Coaches Work with Teachers
Oct 7 - Daleville 
Effective Strategies to Improve Children's Abilities to Control their Behaviors and Emotions
Oct 9 and Nov 6 
Annual Conference
December 3-5 at
Doubletree by Hilton
Williamsburg, VA

Check our website 
for more information! 
An education isn't how much you've committed to memory, or even how much you know. It's being able to differentiate between what you know and what you don't. 
-Anatole France

July 2014 Newsletter 

Feature article


SOL Test Reduction Redux

By Laurie McCullough  

This spring, action by the Virginia General Assembly eliminated five SOL tests. It's a small but significant positive step. Unfortunately, the conversation that has ensued makes one wonder if we've gone so far down the high-stakes multiple-choice rabbit hole that we have lost sight of what students really need.


In response to the elimination of the fifth-grade writing test, I recently heard a prominent policy maker remark, "Well, I guess we just don't care if students learn to write any more".  His point, of course, is that without SOL tests looming over us and constraining our practice, we just won't teach (or we won't teach well).  Absent the opportunity to spend week after redundant week practicing the formula for a 5-paragraph essay, teachers won't know what to teach and students won't write at all. You're wrong, my friend. We care, all right. What we care about is students writing more. Read More


Happening Now  


SOL for the 21st Century?


Earlier this month, Governor McAuliffe appointed 35 Virginians to the Standards of Learning Innovation Committee. This group is established in law; 2014 legislation calls for the committee to make recommendations related to assessment and accountability policy, such as the revision of SOL assessments, appropriate student growth measures, and methods for measuring school quality.


VASCD is pleased to have a presence on the Innovation Committee. We take seriously our responsibility to inform our members of the committee's progress in a timely way, and to bring the views of our members to the table. In the coming months, this newsletter will bring you updates and include polling questions requesting your views on assessment and accountability issues. 


We hope to hear from you--- stay tuned! 



Join Rick Wormeli and Chris Gareris for two professional development institutes this September.   


Rick Wormeli

    September 12 - Richmond 


In this session, Rick tackles important and sometimes controversial issues related to assessment, grading, and homework in a positive and constructive way. And when the session is over, we have continued learning opportunities for you and your colleagues back at school!

Your registration for the Sept. 12 session includes a copy of Rick's book, Fair Isn't Always Equal, and we will point you to free study guides, facilitator's guides, and resource materials that will help you if you choose to conduct a book study or PLC on assessment and grading.  To provide you with support as you pursue this work in your school, you will be invited to attend a series of three online meetings for discussion of assessment and grading issues. Participants will share their experiences and ideas with each other, and  Rick will join us for at least one of these sessions to respond to your questions. Online sessions will be held from 5:00- 6:00 pm on Sept. 30, Oct. 14 and Oct. 28.  

Chris Gareis 
September 24, 2014, William and Mary, Williamsburg


Chris will describe the characteristics of high-quality performance assessments and share a process/template for assessment design. Then expert Virginia teachers who are highly successful with performance assessment in their own classrooms will discuss their experiences, offer their advice, and share their work. REGISTER HERE     

Virginia ASCD | 434-466-7466 | |
2516 Old Lynchburg Rd
North Garden, VA 22959

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