Office of the Commissioner

Commissioner's Weekly Update

2017

November 3, 2017

  1. Job Description Posted for Next Commissioner
  2. Lawrence Educator Receives Milken Award
  3. Middle Schools Substance Use Prevention Initiative
  4. Board and Commission Training
  5. School Survey Results from Massachusetts School Building Authority
  6. Programme for International Student Assessment
  7. Digital Connections Partnership Schools Grants Available for Wi-Fi

October 27, 2017

  1. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education Meetings
  2. The ABCs of Success in High School and Beyond
  3. Springfield Principal Honored
  4. Graduation Requirements for High School Students from Puerto Rico
  5. Online Course for Early Childhood Educators
  6. ESSA Changes Related to the "Highly Qualified" Designation and Parental Notifications
  7. Digital Connections Partnership Schools Grants Available for Wi-Fi
  8. Recent Changes to the Educator Licensure and Preparation Program Approval Regulations
  9. ESE Resource Corner
  10. New policy brief available on teacher equity gaps
  11. For Your Info:
    • Cyber threat
    • Governor tours early college programs

October 20, 2017

  1. Assessment and Accountability Results
  2. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  3. Serving Students from Puerto Rico
  4. Dropout Prevention and Re-Engagement Work Group Meeting
  5. Southbridge Receiver Job Description Posted
  6. Social and Emotional Learning Professional Development Opportunity
  7. 2017-2018 U.S. Presidential Scholar Nominations
  8. Elementary Principals Network Meetings
  9. Special Education Advisory Council Openings
  10. Used Computers Available
  11. Digital Connections Partnership Schools Grants Available for Wi-Fi
  12. Water Testing Available
  13. Registration Open for Student Government Day on April 6
  14. For Your Info:
    • Computer Science Teachers Association Conference

October 13, 2017

  1. Embargoed Release of Assessment and Accountability Data
  2. 2017 Annual Dropout and Cohort Graduation Rate Data Ready for Review
  3. Grants Available for STEM Career Pathways
  4. Free E-rate Webinar Series
  5. Digital Connections Partnership Schools Grants Available for Wi-Fi
  6. Application Deadline for Parent and Community Advisory Council Extended
  7. Resources for Massachusetts' Approved ESSA Plan
  8. Skills Capital Grants
  9. Exploring the State of Personalized Learning
  10. ESE Resource Corner
  11. For Your Info:
    • Social studies conference
    • Identifying and remediating reading disabilities
    • "High School Quiz Show"
    • Civics opportunity

October 6, 2017

  1. Commissioner Search
  2. 2017 MCAS and Accountability Information
  3. Early Warning and College Success Webinar
  4. Accountability and Assistance Advisory Council to Meet
  5. Update on Puerto Rico
  6. Recent Changes to the Educator Licensure and Preparation Program Approval Regulations
  7. Induction and Mentoring Report
  8. ESE Resource Corner
    • Grade-by-grade explanations for the 2017 ELA/Literacy and Mathematics curriculum frameworks
  9. For Your Info:
    • Gov. Baker visits Lawrence
    • Clean Energy Day opportunity
    • Webinar on evaluating professional development

September 29, 2017

  1. National Blue Ribbon Schools
  2. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education Meeting
  3. Welcoming Students from Puerto Rico
  4. "I Came Here to Learn"
  5. FY18 Digital Connections Partnership Schools Grant Webinars
  6. Community Forum in Abington
  7. Districts' Testing Mode Decisions Due October 13
  8. Computer Science-STEM Opportunity
  9. Advanced Placement Results
  10. Two Charter School Proposals Move to Next Phase

September 22, 2017

  1. State ESSA Plan Approved
  2. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  3. Supporting Students in Military Families
  4. Special Education Leadership
  5. Digital Connections Initiative: K-12 Upgrade Webinar
  6. Competitive FY18 Safe and Supportive Schools Grant
  7. Online Course for Early Childhood Educators
  8. Social and Emotional Learning Professional Development Opportunity
  9. Openings on Arts Education Advisory Council and the Racial Imbalance Advisory Council
  10. Elementary Principals Network Meetings
  11. ESE Resource Corner:
    • Quick reference guides to the 2017 Mathematics Curriculum Framework

September 15, 2017

  1. Reminder about Directory Administration
  2. 2017 Principals of the Year
  3. History Teacher of the Year Becomes a National Finalist
  4. Chapter 74 New Program Applications
  5. Substance Use Prevention Education Training for Middle Schools
  6. 2017-18 Restraint Data Collection Tool Now Open
  7. ESE Resource Corner
    • Highlighting strong work in Framingham
  8. For Your Info:
    • Poetry Out Loud
    • National Assessment Governing Board seeks members
    • Prudential Spirit of Community Awards
    • Staff member recognized

September 8, 2017

  1. Guidance on Immigration Enforcement Requests
  2. Early Warning Indicator System Data for 2017-18 Available
  3. Planning for Success Action Plan Training
  4. Openings on Parent and Community Education and Involvement Advisory Council
  5. Water Testing Available
  6. Back-to-School Materials in Five More Languages
  7. Reminder: New Anti-Hazing Collection Procedures Underway
  8. For Your Info:
    • Massachusetts History Day
    • Constitution Day
    • Great NorthEast ShakeOut
    • Massachusetts Students' ACT Scores among the Best

September 1, 2017

  1. Celebration of Commissioner Chester's Life
  2. Restraint Data Collection Update and Reminder
  3. Planning for Success Action Plan Training
  4. Public Comment Period for the Mass. Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS )
  5. For Your Info:
    • Proposed Somerville school to be featured
    • Early education grants
    • Commonwealth Commitment expands
    • Back to school with USED

August 25, 2017

  1. A Message from Acting Commissioner Jeff Wulfson
  2. Preliminary 2017 Accountability Data
  3. New Anti-Hazing Collection Procedures Underway
  4. Standard Setting Conference
  5. ESE Resource Corner
    • New interactive parent guide to the next-generation MCAS
  6. For Your Info:
    • Celebration of Commissioner Chester's life
    • METCO, Inc. seeks a CEO

August 18, 2017

  1. Preliminary 2017 MCAS Results
  2. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education Special Meeting
  3. Educator Network Opportunity
  4. Celebration of Commissioner Chester's Life
  5. For Your Info:
    • New STEM and literacy and humanities leaders
    • Webinar on emergency planning

August 11, 2017

  1. Summary Now Available on Changes to Licensure and Educator Preparation Regulations
  2. Early Warning Indicator System (EWIS) Reports coming to Edwin
  3. Four Groups Hope to Open New Charter Schools
  4. Request for Proposals for Adult Education Posted
  5. Dropout Prevention and Re-Engagement Network Meeting
  6. Proportionate Share Guidance
  7. Leading the Nation
  8. ESE Resource Corner
    • Revised What to Look For observation guides now available

August 4, 2017

  1. Understanding the Impact of Poverty on Student Outcomes
  2. Application Materials Released to Support High Quality College and Career Pathways
  3. Broadband Upgrade Support Survey
  4. For Your Info:
    • Celebration of Commissioner Chester's Life

July 28, 2017

  1. Celebration of Commissioner Chester's Life
  2. Website Redesign
  3. Early Grades Literacy Grant
  4. Changes to Licensure Regulations
  5. Request for Feedback about School and District Profiles
  6. For Your Info:
    • Technology guide
    • Tips on Math Instruction

July 21, 2017

  1. Massachusetts High Quality College and Career Pathways Initiative
  2. Title IV, Part A: Student Support and Academic Enrichment Allocation Grant Posted
  3. FY18 Chapter 70 Information Posted
  4. Alternate Assessment Waiver
  5. For Your Info:
    • Middle school science teachers wanted for study

July 14, 2017

  1. Quick Reference Guides to the 2017 English Language Arts Curriculum Framework
  2. Supporting Students who are Homeless or in Foster Care - New Contact Information
  3. Special Education Professional Development Series
  4. Free Conference on Implementing New Curriculum Frameworks
  5. For Your Info:
    • SkillsUSA
    • Edcamp on innovation and design
    • Summer Nights for Youth
    • Strategies for at-risk high school students

July 7, 2017

  1. Launching the High Quality College and Career Pathways Initiative
  2. Sheltered English Immersion Endorsement Reports

June 30, 2017

  1. Message from Acting Commissioner Jeff Wulfson
  2. Sheltered English Immersion Endorsement Reports
  3. Tiered Systems of Instruction and Support Academies
  4. ACCESS for ELLs
  5. ESE Resource Corner
    • English Language Arts and Mathematics Curriculum Frameworks
  6. For Your Info:
    • Summer Learning Day

June 23, 2017

  1. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  2. Proportionate Share
  3. New Advisory on Special Education Law
  4. For Your Info:
    • Principals to form unified pK-12 association

June 16, 2017

  1. End of Year Message from Commissioner Chester
  2. Notable Teachers Recognized at State House
  3. Opportunity to Give Input on First Year of Computer-Based Testing
  4. Early Warning Indicator System (EWIS) Release Update
  5. Celebrating Good Work
  6. Title I Equitable Share Data for Private School Services
  7. For Your Info:
    • Reminder: Principal and Teacher Advisory Cabinets open for applications
    • Educator preparation report
    • Video recap of administration's school tour

June 9, 2017

  1. 2017-18 Testing Schedule Released
  2. Seeking Feedback on Guidelines for Implementing Social and Emotional Learning Curricula
  3. Principal and Teacher Advisory Cabinets Open for Applications
  4. Jacob K. Javits Gifted and Talented Students Education Program Grant Opportunity
  5. Preliminary MCAS Results Release Timeline
  6. For Your Info:
    • Skills Capital Grants
    • Social studies summer content institute
    • Social and emotional learning network opportunity
    • Social studies professional development providers wanted
    • Reducing chronic absenteeism
    • Summer enrichment opportunity for high school juniors and seniors

June 2, 2017

  1. First Year of Next-Generation MCAS Testing Completed
  2. Provide Feedback on the Emerging High Quality College and Career Pathways Designations
  3. Sharing Practices Related to Students Who Are Above Grade Level
  4. VISTA: Educator Voices Were Heard, and the Results Are In
  5. District Induction and Mentoring Reports due July 31
  6. For Your Info:
    • U.S. Department of Education blog

May 26, 2017

  1. Sharing Practices Related to Students Who Are Above Grade Level
  2. Seeking Input on Next-Generation MCAS Parent/Guardian Reports
  3. Financial Literacy PISA Results
  4. Accountability and Assistance Advisory Council to Meet
  5. Communication Survey
  6. For Your Info:
    • Governor visits schools

May 19, 2017

  1. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  2. Guidance on Immigration Enforcement Requests
  3. 2017-2018 Charter School Initial Waitlist Report
  4. School Choice Reminder
  5. VISTA: Educator Voices Were Heard, and the Results Are In
  6. Opportunity for Free Strategic Planning Facilitation Training
  7. Computer Science-STEM Opportunity
  8. Summit on Leading Student-Centered Digital Learning Initiatives

May 12, 2017

  1. Systems Upgrade Planned for This Weekend
  2. 2018 Massachusetts Teacher of the Year
  3. Information for 2017-18 Charter School Application Cycle
  4. Update on Proposed Change to Licensure Regulations
  5. Update and Reminder on Standard-Setting Panel Recruitment
  6. Equity Plan Update
  7. Study on Experiences of Students Whose First Language Is Not English
  8. Massachusetts Survey on Personalized Learning
  9. Second Annual Civics Literacy Conference
  10. For Your Info:
    • Harvard Case Method Project

May 5, 2017

  1. Presidential Scholars Announced
  2. Save the Date: Conference on Safe and Supportive Learning Environments
  3. Assistance Program for Lead in School Drinking Water
  4. ESE Resource Corner: ESE Research Update
  5. For Your Info:
    • High school strategy briefs

April 28, 2017

  1. Material to be Assessed on 2018 Science and Technology/Engineering MCAS Tests
  2. Standard-Setting Panel Recruitment
  3. Access for Students with Disabilities to Field Trips and Extracurricular Activities
  4. Reminder: May 8 Deadline if MCAS-Alt Participation Rate Will Exceed 1 Percent
  5. ESE Resource Corner
    • Next-generation MCAS monthly update
  6. For Your Info:
    • Green Difference Award winners
    • Personalized learning convening

April 21, 2017

  1. National Teacher of the Year
  2. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education
  3. Save the Date: Conference on Safe and Supportive Learning Environments
  4. Early Education Focus Groups with Public Preschools
  5. Sheltered English Immersion (SEI) Surveys
  6. ESE Resource Corner: Writing Standards in Action Project
  7. For Your Info:
    • Earth-to-space call

April 14, 2017

  1. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  2. Student Government Day
  3. Picture of the Week
  4. RETELL Extending the Learning Mini Courses
  5. Next-Generation MCAS Resources
  6. New Function Included in Directory Administration
  7. Educator Licensure & License Renewal Proposed Regulation Changes
  8. Registration Open for May 8 Civics Literacy Conference
  9. For Your Info:
    • Nutrition grants available

April 7, 2017

  1. Preventing and Addressing Bias-Based Incidents in Schools
  2. Every Student Succeeds Act State Plan
  3. April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month
  4. Charter School FY18 Pre-Enrollment Report Posted
  5. Opportunity for Special Education Directors
  6. Special Education Leadership Institutes
  7. Accountability and Assistance Advisory Council to Meet
  8. Registration Open for May 8 Civics Literacy Conference
  9. Private School Ombudsman
  10. For Your Info:
    • Nutrition grants available
    • School Innovation and Change Awards

March 31, 2017

  1. Board Adopts Revised English Language Arts/Literacy and Mathematics Standards
  2. State to Subsidize STEM AP Exams for Low-Income Students
  3. Next-Generation MCAS Update
  4. MCAS Participation
  5. Board Approves Next-Generation MCAS Descriptors
  6. Massachusetts ESSA Plan
  7. Registration Open for May 8 Civics Literacy Conference
  8. Adult Basic Education Grants Coming Up
  9. For Your Info:
    • Breakfast grants available

March 24, 2017

  1. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  2. School Climate Questionnaire Included with MCAS
  3. Reminder about Federal Budget Discussions
  4. Community forum with Commissioner Chester
  5. Save the Date: Civics Literacy Conference May 8
  6. For Your Info:
    • Social studies conference
    • Save the date: Bias-Based Incidents in Schools
    • Outstanding principal award
    • VISTA: Educator voices were heard!
    • USED IDEA website

March 17, 2017

  1. Expediting Educators' Licenses for Military Personnel and Spouses
  2. Next-Generation MCAS Update
    • Test Administration Manuals Available to Download
    • Reminder to Administer an Infrastructure Trial for Computer-Based Testing
  3. Instructional Technology Specialist Subject Matter Knowledge Panel
  4. School Choice Reminder
  5. For Your Info:
    • Women's History Month
    • Literacy Awards

March 10, 2017

  1. Educator Evaluation Amendments
  2. Early Literacy Institute
  3. Digital Literacy and Computer Science Framework Implementation Panel
  4. Nominations Open for History, Math and Science Teacher Recognition Programs
  5. Workforce Skills and STEM Pathways Announcements
  6. Pilot on Early Childhood Data
  7. Last Call on VISTA Surveys
  8. For Your Info:
    • Free device and wireless service opportunity

March 3, 2017

  1. Graduation Rate Grows for 10th Year in a Row
  2. Massachusetts ranked top state
  3. Educator Evaluation Changes
  4. Three New Charter Schools Approved
  5. Public Comment Open on Proposed Changes to 2017 District and School Accountability
  6. Attorney General's Advisory on Serving Students Regardless of Immigration Status
  7. ESSA's Limit on Alternate Assessments
  8. VISTA is still open!
  9. For Your Info:
    • School breakfast grant opportunities

February 24, 2017

  1. Massachusetts Tops on Advanced Placement Exams
  2. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  3. Preview of Next-Generation MCAS Score Release Timeline
  4. Transgender Guidance
  5. Massachusetts 21st Century Community Learning Centers Grant Opportunity
  6. For Your Info:
    • Town hall forum in Upton next month
    • New college access and completion programs
    • Grant opportunity for cross-generational learning

February 17, 2017

  1. Good News on School Breakfast
  2. Commissioner Recommends Three New Charter Schools
  3. Teacher Pipeline Partnership Grants Announced
  4. VISTA: Educator Voice Matters
  5. For Your Info:
    • Annual convening
    • Educational and research institutions awarded $39 million in capital grants
    • After-the-bell breakfast opportunity
    • Senior Associate Commissioner joins Chiefs for Change

February 10, 2017

  1. Every Student Succeeds Act Draft Plan Available for Comment
  2. E-rate Application Window and Webinar Opportunity
  3. Guide for School Personnel on MassHealth Behavioral Health Services for Children and Youth
  4. VISTA Survey Window is Closing Soon
  5. Student Government Day Updates
  6. For Your Info:
    • Secretary DeVos' remarks

February 3, 2017

  1. Commendation School Ceremony
  2. Governor's Letter on Immigration and Refugee Executive Order
  3. ESSA-Related Guidance on Students in Foster Care
  4. Next-Generation MCAS Practice Tests Available
  5. Preparing for Summer Meals
  6. VISTA is off to a Great Start!
  7. For Your Info:
    • Phishing warning
    • Literacy and humanities opportunity

January 27, 2017

  1. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education
  2. Chapter 70 Estimates Available
  3. Changes to Charter School Tuition Assessment Schedule
  4. Next-Generation MCAS Update
    • Practice Tests Coming for Next-Generation MCAS
    • Update on Computer-Based Testing Choices
  5. VISTA: We Want to Hear from You!
  6. Survey on the Massachusetts History and Social Science Framework Revision
  7. Survey on the Massachusetts English Language Arts/Literacy and Mathematics Framework Revision
  8. For Your Info:
    • We the People competition
    • Licensure office hits record numbers

January 20, 2017

  1. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  2. VISTA Survey Window is Open
  3. Massachusetts FOCUS Academy Courses Open
  4. Community Forum in Fitchburg
  5. Mini-Grants Available for Healthy Eating Initiatives
  6. For Your Info:
    • Staff member appointed to national board
    • U.S. Department of Education School Ambassador Fellowship
    • Arbor Day Poster Contest
    • AMP it up! Video Challenge
    • RMV has expanded language options

January 13, 2017

  1. New Skills for Youth Grant Announcement
  2. Massachusetts Teacher Named Finalist for National Teacher of the Year
  3. Teacher of the Year and History Teacher of the Year Programs Open for Nominations
  4. Instructional Support Convening
  5. Registration for High School MCAS Tests and Retests
  6. VISTA Survey
  7. Accountability and Assistance Advisory Council to Meet
  8. Early Literacy Institute
  9. E-rate Invoice Deadlines Approaching
  10. Advanced Placement Exam Fee Subsidies
  11. Student Government Day 2017
  12. For Your Info:
    • Eos awards for school breakfast participation
    • We the People competition
    • Peer reviewers needed for ESSA state plans

January 6, 2017

  1. Education Week's Quality Counts Rates Massachusetts Best in Nation
  2. Office Hours on Proposed Revisions to ELA and Mathematics Curriculum Frameworks
  3. Special Education Professional Development Survey
  4. Survey on History and Social Science Framework Revision
  5. ESE Resource Corner
    • Evidence-based turnaround practices
  6. Guidance on Rights of Students with Disabilities
  7. Resources to Help Students Transition out of Juvenile Justice Settings
  8. For Your Info:
    • Including data from commonwealth virtual schools for the school-attending children report
    • Last call for DEP assistance program for lead in school drinking water

2016

December 23, 2016

  1. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education
  2. Including Data from Commonwealth Virtual Schools for the School-Attending Children Report
  3. For Your Info:
    • RMV expands language options

December 16, 2016

  1. Commonwealth Commitment
  2. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  3. New Application for Critical Shortage Waivers
  4. Seeking Public Feedback on Next-Generation MCAS Achievement Levels
  5. MAPLE Consortium Launch
  6. New Grant Opportunity for STEM Educators
  7. For Your Info:
    • National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Awards

December 9, 2016

  1. PISA Results Put Massachusetts among Top Nations
  2. Recovery High Schools — Proposed Regulations
  3. Resources for Science and Technology/Engineering MCAS
  4. Maximize Bandwidth on a Budget
  5. Technology Readiness Survey for Schools with Wi-Fi Needs
  6. For Your Info:
    • Improving Middle and High School Writing
    • The Big Read

December 2, 2016

  1. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education Recap
  2. Survey on History and Social Science Framework Revision
  3. Public Lookup Tool for Licensure
  4. Technology Readiness Survey for Schools with Wi-Fi Needs
  5. Safe Schools Program for LGBTQ Students
  6. ACCESS for ELLs Results, Standard Setting, and 2016-2017 Revised Reclassification Criteria
  7. Trainers Available for Course on Pre-K and Kindergarten Social and Emotional Standards
  8. ESE Resource Corner
    • MCAS Training
  9. For Your Info:
    • Dissemination Fair
    • More STEM internships
    • Financial Education Fairs
    • Turnaround in Lawrence

November 18, 2016

  1. Messages from Commissioner Chester
  2. 2016 School & District Report Cards Available for Distribution
  3. Understanding the Impact of Poverty on Student Outcomes
  4. Voluntary Science and Technology/Engineering (STE) Question Tryout for Grades 5 and 8
  5. Discipline Data Released
  6. Charter School Hearings Scheduled
  7. Additional Money for Drinking Water Tests
  8. ESE Resource Center: Science Ambassadors available
  9. Tool for Getting More Bandwidth on a Budget
  10. Next-Generation Test Designs and Other Information Now Available
  11. For Your Info:
    • Hour of Code
Contact Us

Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
75 Pleasant Street, Malden, MA 02148-4906

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