National and Local News
K12 Voucher Funds
CETPA recently began discussions with CTAP and the California School Boards Association (CSBA) regarding the remaining Microsoft K12 Voucher funds. There is another round of funding available and we are working to get information about their release.
Here is the latest information and we will continue to distribute updates as received. Thank you to CTAP for this information.
· The date or amount of the final allocation for the first cy pres (legal term) has not been confirmed. During the last discussion with the Parties it was revealed that the Parties are 30-60 days away from the determination of the total funds available for distribution. CDE will announce the release of these funds as soon as they become available.
· The parties have agreed to seek an extension of the September 25, 2013 deadline for the K-12 voucher program.
· A total of $242,893,344 was awarded for the first cy pres to 1012 districts. 88 percent of the funds awarded have been distributed to date. Of the 1,012 districts that were awarded the first cy pres, 601 districts have a zero balance for both General Purpose Vouchers (GPV) and Specific Category Vouchers (SCSV). 840 districts have a zero balance for GPV and 627 districts have a zero balance for SCSV.
Districts should check the information on the Settlement Claims Administrator site at https://edtechk12vp.com/. If your balance sheet appears to be incorrect, contact the Settlement Claims Administrator. 1-800-419-5286 – many of you may have already done this more than once but we want to be sure that all funds spent are reported.
SMARTER Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC)
Update from the California Department of Education (CDE)
Issue 58—Week of Monday, June 3, 2013
The California Department of Education (CDE) Smarter Balanced update is a bimonthly e-mail that reports on current and upcoming Smarter Balanced development activities. To join the CDE Smarter Balanced e-mail list, send a blank e-mail to: email@example.com.
In this issue:
· Application Window for Item Development Participation Closes June 6
· Application Window for Digital Library State Network of Educators Closes June 14
· Draft Accessibility and Accommodations Framework Available for Public Review and Comment through June 14
· Practice Tests Now Available
· Assembly Bill 484 Legislative Activity
Application Window for Item Development Participation Closes June 6
Through June 6, the California Department of Education (CDE) is accepting applications from qualified educators to participate in the development and analysis of Smarter Balanced pilot and field test items. The CDE will be selecting educators for the following activities in 2013:
- Field Test Stimulus Review: anticipated dates of service, June–August 2013
- Field Test Item Writing: anticipated dates of service, July–October 2013
- Field Test Item and Task Review: anticipated dates of service, July–November 2013
- Pilot Test Data Review: anticipated dates of service, August–September 2013
General requirements for participating educators include:
· Currently certified or licensed to teach English–language arts (ELA) and/or mathematics in a K–12 public school.
· Currently teaching in a public school or currently employed by a public school or district or state education entity, including higher education.
· Taught ELA and/or mathematics in grades three through eight and/or high school within the past three years or have worked in a classroom content support role such as a literacy or mathematics coach, district or state content specialist.
· Previously reviewed part or all of the Common Core State Standards for the content area in which they are interested in writing items.
The online application can be found on CDE Web site at http://surveys.cde.ca.gov/surveylogin.asp?k=136882687357.
Application Window for Digital Library State Network of Educators Closes June 14
Through June 14, the CDE will be accepting applications to participate in the State Network of Educators for the Smarter Balanced Digital Library. This team of K-12 and higher education professionals will evaluate formative assessment tools and practices for inclusion in the Smarter Balanced Digital Library. Approximately 150 members will be selected for this team. Members must have experience with the Common Core State Standards and formative assessment tools and practices, and must have experience teaching one or more of the following student groups: general education; gifted and talented; English learners; and students with disabilities. Further information about this opportunity and a link to the online application are available on the CDE Smarter Balanced Web page at http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/sa/diglib.asp.
Draft Accessibility and Accommodations Framework Available for Public Review and Comment through June 14
Through June 14, the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium is gathering feedback on its draft Accessibility and Accommodations Framework. The framework describes the general approach that is expected to be used by Smarter Balanced to address accessibility tools and accommodation options for students taking the Smarter Balanced assessments. The draft framework and instructions for providing feedback are available on the CDE Smarter Balanced Web page at http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/sa/access.asp. Consolidated feedback on behalf of organizations is encouraged.
Practice Tests Now Available
On May 29, Smarter Balanced released a set of Practice Tests in ELA and mathematics for each of grades three through eight and grade eleven. The Practices Tests are publicly available, and no secure login or browser is required. The purpose of the Practice Tests is to provide students, parents, teachers, school administrators, and the public the opportunity to experience features of online testing and help schools prepare for the implementation of the Smarter Balanced assessments. Further information and a link to the Practice Tests are available on the CDE Smarter Balanced Web page at http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/sa/practicetest.asp. Also available on this Web page is a letter template for schools to announce the availability of the Practice Tests to parents and guardians. Translations of this letter in Spanish and several other languages will soon be available.
Assembly Bill 484 Legislative Activity
Assembly Bill (AB) 484 proposes the establishment of the California Measurement of Academic Performance and Progress for the 21st Century (CalMAPP21), which would succeed the existing Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) Program. On May 29, 2013, AB 484 was passed by the Assembly and moved to the Senate. For information on specific bill language or to track the status of AB 484, visit the California Legislative Information Web site at
Additional information about Smarter Balanced is available on the CDE Smarter Balanced Web page at http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/sa/smarterbalanced.asp. General questions about the Smarter Balanced assessments should be directed to the CDE Statewide Assessment Transition Office by phone at 916-445-8517 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
EducationSuperHighway, a non-profit organization, is focused on ensuring that all K-12 schools have at least 100MB+ of bandwidth. Currently, an average school has only 20MB, the same connection most have in their homes. It’s just not enough when you want to show 30 simultaneous videos in one classroom. Their first step is to take a national inventory of the Internet speed at every K-12 school in America. EducationSuperHighway is calling on 1 million teachers, librarians, and administrators to take the 1 minute School Speed Test by simply clicking a button while they are logged into their school network.