GV BOCES School Improvement

May 2022 Newsletter

News You Can Use

Embedded in the School Improvement (SI) newsletter you will find important updates, information, and resources from the New York State Department of Education (NYSED) & your regional Joint Management Team BOCES (Monroe 1 BOCES, Monroe 2 BOCES, Genesee Valley BOCES & Wayne-Finger Lakes BOCES). Below are direct links that assist with staying current regarding news and changes at the state level.

Featured Speaker: Patrice Bain

Title: Powerful Teaching

Description: Have you had students struggle to remember what was taught the previous year, semester, or even the last month? Have you had students internalize failure, thinking they won’t succeed because they’re “not smart”? There are reasons, researched reasons, why this happens. Patrice Bain, a veteran teacher and co-author of Powerful Teaching: Unleash the Science of Learning, knows the rigor required for the classroom. Having worked with cognitive scientists for over fifteen years, Bain developed teaching strategies based on robust research that improves learning. Best of all, these strategies don’t add to teachers’ already filled plates but will streamline what they are already doing. In this engaging and interactive workshop, Patrice Bain will unlock the research and provide evidence-based strategies that will transform your teaching so that all students will be successful learners.

In this workshop, educators will:

  • Learn the research behind: retrieval, spacing, interleaving, and feedback-driven metacognition

  • Understand how cognitive load, working memory, and desirable difficulties play a role in learning

  • Discern learning “myths” vs. “truths”

  • Grasp how simple changes to what they are already doing will increase student learning

  • Leave the workshop with a repertoire of tools and strategies that can be used the following day

Date: June 8, 2022

Location: LeRoy Service Center, 80 Munson Street, Le Roy, NY 14482

Time: 8:30am-3:00pm

Full Implementation Is Around the Corner!

As the 2021-2022 school year begins to wind down, do not forget that the Next Generation Learning Standards (NGLS) implementation is ramping up! Grades 3-8 ELA and Math state assessments will be NGLS aligned in the Spring of 2023. Below you will find a New York State Education Department English Language Arts (ELA) professional learning opportunity (recorded) for K-12 ELA teachers in an effort to support the implementation of the NGLS. The Office of Curriculum and Instruction hosted a one-hour webcast to present and review existing materials and resources designed for the standards transition. Although the webcast was held on Tuesday, April 26, 2022, the presentation will be recorded and published on the Office of Curriculum and Instruction’s English Language Arts website for the educators who were not able to attend. Be on the lookout for the recorded webinar!

Computer Science and Digital Fluency Learning Standards

The New York State K-12 Computer Science and Digital Fluency Learning Standards were adopted by the Board of Regents in December 2020. The new standards focus on five key concepts:

  • Impacts of Computing

  • Computational Thinking

  • Networks & Systems Design

  • Cybersecurity

  • Digital Literacy

To assist and support districts and educators with the transition to full implementation of the NYS Learning Standards for Computer Science and Digital Fluency, NYSED has released a new Roadmap and Implementation Timeline. The purpose of the Computer Science and Digital Fluency Learning Standards Implementation Roadmap is to serve as an at-a-glance guide for all stakeholder groups to facilitate the attainment of the standards.

If you would like assistance with transitioning to the NYS Learning Standards for Computer Science and Digital Fluency, please contact the Genesee Valley BOCES Model School Service for assistance.

Other Important Dates & Timelines

Below you will find a cumulative Google Document resource showcasing the assessment dates of each subject area.

Continue Your Professional Learning

The School Improvement (SI) newsletter also strives to continue professional learning for school administrators, teachers, and staff even from afar. This section of the newsletter will provide readers with timely and relevant learning aligned to evidence-based practices. If you would like more on topics outlined in the newsletter, please contact the SI department. Our contact information is located at the bottom of the newsletter. Enjoy!

Ignoring the Fads, Programs, and Innovations

Mike Schmoker claims, in his book entitled FOCUS: Elevating the Essentials to Radically Improve Student Learning (2018), that schools need to re-evaluate their focus in an effort to radically improve student learning. Schmoker contends that if schools can narrow their focus on “what is essential,” then educators have an opportunity to decrease most of the achievement gaps within five to seven years. The book offers three fundamental elements to reach this aim:

1. Curriculum that is reasonably coherent;

2. Lessons that are sound and structured; and

3. Authentic literacy as the spine.

Simply put, the emphasis for school improvement should address… what we teach and how we teach.

Mike Schmoker will be the keynote presenter at the 2022 Genesee Valley BOCES Leadership Institute (LI). Regional administrators were given a copy of the text FOCUS at the 2021 Leadership Institute in preparation for Schmoker’s upcoming keynote. The School Improvement Team (SIT) invites all Genesee Valley BOCES administrators to read the text prior to the LI event in August. (Please call SIT if you need a copy.) A study guide and opportunities to discuss the book synchronously with other administrators from the region will be forthcoming, in order to prepare for the 2022 LI event. These resources and opportunities will be sent out on the Genesee Valley BOCES listservs. Stay tuned for more information!

Discussing Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Genesee Valley Region

The New York State Board of Regents launched an initiative to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in schools across New York State. As the first steps in the initiative, the Board released a policy statement as well as a draft framework and call to action for all schools in New York State to develop policies that advance DEI as a priority in their schools. In an effort to support the Genesee Valley BOCES component districts with the alignment to the Board of Regents initiative, the School Improvement Team (SIT) partnered with a local expert, Dr. Luvelle Brown, on leading a culture of love and ensuring a culturally responsive teaching/learning environment.

Dr. Brown is currently the Ithaca City Schools Superintendent and has received various awards and recognitions. The 2017 New York State Superintendent of the Year has been listed by TrustED as one of the nation’s top educators and thought leaders. In 2022, he received the prestigious Dr. Effie H. Jones Humanitarian Award. Dr. Brown has been recognized by the National School Boards Association as a “20-to-Watch” and “Difference Maker.” He also received the Center for Digital Education Top 30 Award as well as the 2014 eSchool News Tech-Savvy Superintendent Award. He was selected by the US Department of Education as one of the nation’s top 100 Innovative Superintendents. Along with that distinction, Dr. Brown was invited to be a featured speaker at President Barack Obama’s 1st National Superintendent Summit at the White House. Additionally, Dr. Brown has served on the New York State Council of School Superintendents (NYSCOSS) Executive Committee, The School Superintendents Association (AASA) Digital Consortium, The Center for Digital Education Advisory Council, and CoSN’s Empowered Superintendent Advisory Panel.

Dr. Brown met with regional stakeholders during a three-part virtual equity series that began on January 12, 2022, and ended on March 23, 2022. The equity series yielded 66 participants from across the Mid-West JMT BOCES area, which included city and rural school leaders. Dr. Brown talked to participants about creating a culture of love, liberation, and belonging, addressing bias, and evaluating/creating local policies that align with a culture of love.

If interested in DEI/Equity long-range planning, please feel free to contact the SIT.


Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI)

School Improvement Spotlights

School Improvement (SI) takes great pride in the work we do at the state level, regionally, and when working directly with component districts. This section of the newsletter offers insight into the work SI does and provides recognition to local districts that strive for continuous school improvement. Partnerships and collaboration are the key to everyone's success!

Warsaw CSD Spotlighted At NYSED BOR Meeting!

The April Board of Regents Meeting starred a local Genesee Valley BOCES Region representative. Invited through the work of NYS Staff Curriculum Development Network and the ELA PD Framework Group, Mrs. Kimberly Monahan, Director of Instructional Services for the Warsaw Central School District, shared Warsaw’s “story” regarding the process toward full implementation of the NYS Next Generation Learning Standards for ELA. Graciously, Kim Zoom-ed into the BOR Meeting from her spring vacation to discuss Warsaw’s efforts to improve local curricula to reflect the NGLS, discuss how the district leveraged BOCES as a partner, and share some staff reflections regarding the project.

During the allotted time, Mrs. Monahan shared how she created a map for curriculum review that included initial priority areas, which included English Language Arts. Through her leadership, a Steering Committee was created to take a “deep dive into the NGLS”-- a component of which concentrated on analysis of local assessment data. As a result of the Steering Committee’s initial work, teams of teachers partnered with BOCES School Improvement Staff to prioritize standards, develop pacing guides, audit instructional units, and create quality learning intentions and success criteria to enhance clarity, as well as to illustrate “what students need to know and be able to do and how students can demonstrate proficiency.”

Kim generously thanked BOCES for working with her to develop a long-range plan of which School Improvement provided “the structure and progress monitoring tools necessary to support staff to continue to make progress.” Although the project represents significant and sustained effort from a myriad of staff at the Local Educational Agency (LEA) level, Mrs. Monahan shared that a seasoned veteran exclaimed of the process as turning out to be “really good professional development!”

Thank you Mrs. Monahan for showcasing the work at Warsaw!


See below for a few general reminders from the School Improvement Team!

CoSer 526 Form A Documents Due

Reminder: All Form A submissions are due to the School Improvement Department no later than the first Friday following May 31st. If you need assistance you are welcome to schedule an appointment for support.
CoSer 526 Website

Click here to learn more about the Form A

Genesee Valley BOCES Leadership Institute 2022

Registration is open for the 2022 Genesee Valley BOCES Leadership Institute! Click the link below to register on Frontline.

Follow School Improvement on Twitter

Don’t forget that you can follow the School Improvement Team (SIT) on Twitter. The team is often posting information about upcoming professional learning opportunities, educational resources, and strategies for the classroom. You can stay in tune with what is happening at Genesee Valley BOCES and the SIT by following #gvbocessit.

Need Support?

Please direct all requests for service to the Director of School Improvement, Stephanie Burns at 585.344.7923.