High School Principals' Newsletter

December 2015

Update on ESEA

December 2 Update from EdWeek

From National Connection Daily:

Congress To Hold ESEA Conference To Rewrite NCLB Act.

Education Week (11/17, Klein) reports that Congress is making progress with bipartisan, bicameral legislation to rewrite the No Child Left Behind Act, and an official conference committee that will begin this week. The proposal would increase states’ control over many aspects of testing and school assistance and includes a requirement that states turn around the bottom five percent of schools. A provision prohibiting ED Secretary from “interfering with state prerogatives on teacher evaluation, testing, standards, school turnarounds, and more” is seen as a “rebuke” to Education Secretary Arne Duncan. Experts say that the proposal, while not ideal, should garter bipartisan support and note that it will place “tremendous responsibility” on states. A detailed overview of the bill is provided.

The Hill (11/17, Marcos) reports that lawmakers hope to finish conference negotiations by the end of the year to send a bill to President Obama. However, the Hill says it is unclear whether a compromise bill would be signed into law because the Obama Administration “has expressed opposition to both” the House and Senate versions of the bill

Click below for the infographic:


State Assessment Reminders:

  • Assessment results are coming out in pieces
  • Next to come out are the Parent/Student Reports
  • Then District Results

Results will be reported at the Claim Level with nothing at the Item Level

4 Math Claims:

Concepts and Procedures

Problem Solving

Communicating Reasoning

Modeling and Data Analysis

4 ELA Claims:




Research and Inquiry

Same is true for Science and Social Studies.

From the School Improvement Conference:

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Don't forget your New Teacher!

December 9th 4:30-6:30

Using Digital Media to Engage Parents and Students.

These two hours will highlight over a dozen tools, apps, and sites that will help your new teacher to improve communication, relationships, engagement and involvement of both students and parents. They won't want to miss this. We will also talk about successful strategies and cautions as they communicate digitally.

March 16th 4:30-6:30

Reflections, Feedback, and Getting Better!

These two hours will focus on taking feedback and using it to continue improve effectiveness. Your new teachers will leave with a reflection sheet, tips for listening, taking the next steps toward improvement and ways to use mentors to support.

Great Reads & Resources

The Complete List of Extraordinary Leadership Qualities...Plus One

Chapter 1 of "Learning in the Fast Lane" book shared by GBHS Algebra Teachers

Jason Youngs' Weebly

Algebra II in CTE site shared by Liz Blomquist & Linda Funsch

"Make it Stick: The Science of Successful Learning"

Genesee County Instructional Technology Committee (GCITC)

New members are welcome to join and work on our Collaborative Initiatives! Sub-Committees are working on deliverables on these projects:

  • Illuminate
  • Early Warning Systems
  • Cross-District Collaboration
  • Google in the Classroom

Our upcoming meetings will be held 2:30-4:00 pm on the following dates:

  • January 21, Room F
  • March 17, Room F
  • May 19, Room 101

Please contact Lisa Madden if you would like to add staff (or yourself!) to this group.

Spring 2016-Testing Schedule Update

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Key Dates to Remember:


School System Review (SSR) OR Interim Self-Assessment or Self Assessment

DUE March 18

School Improvement Plan (SIP)

DUE September 1


District System Review (DSR) OR District Interim Self Assessment or Self Assessment

DUE April 22

Assessment Links and Updates


MDE Link to all Things M-STEP


Update from Office of Assessment & Accountability

Science Resources

Administrator Professional Learning Pathway

A-1. Supporting a Vision of Instruction Consistent with A Framework for K-12 Science Education

Based on information found in the Guide to Implementing the Next Generation Science Standards (download the free pdf and print)

Genesee ISD Dates: 10/27/16 or 1/6/2016 (registration link)

Science Education Professional Learning Resources- Teacher and Administrator Pathways

Next Generation Science Exemplar

Professional Learning at GISD

December 2015

Formative Classroom Walkthroughs: Why Not?

This book is a valuable resource that emphasizes instructional "look-fors" during walkthroughs so that administrators and coaches can provide formative feedback to teachers prior to evaluation.

"Formative walkthroughs, grounded in a learning target theory of action, help all educators...use evidence-based practice, collaborative inquiry, and feed-forward information to increase their effect on student learning and achievement during each lesson."

Genesee Intermediate School District, in collaboration with the Michigan Assessment Consortium and Edupaths, is pleased to host this online book study as one of the sites for MAC Reads 2016. Participants will have access to chapter resources and activities designed to enhance their professional learning, as well as real-time interactive sessions within the online course. Click here to register.

LOCATION: Online (you will receive details soon!)

AUDIENCE: Educators across Michigan

COST: FREE Course; $25 per site to participate in Live Video Conference below)

DATES: Course opens December 1 for asynchronous learning; real-time sessions (see dates below):

*Participants may purchase their books at http://shop.ascd.org.

January 2016

Tuning Up Classroom Assessments

January 12 and January 19

  • How confident are you that your current assessments are tightly aligned with the new Common Core State Standards?
  • How confident are you that your current assessments are rigorous enough to assess students at the appropriate depth of knowledge?
  • How confident are you that your current assessments are of high quality and produce valid results?

This 2-day workshop will provide background knowledge to ensure assessments are aligned to the Common Core and guide participants through a process of analyzing and modifying current assessments being used in their grade, course, building and/or district.

This K-12 workshop is great for teams of teachers using common or interim assessments within a PLC. Participants will need to bring a current assessment with them, printed out on single-sided sheets of paper.

Tuning up Classroom Assessments with Dr. Ellen Vorenkamp. Click here to register!

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Learning Opportunities for Administrators & Teachers