Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia


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In February 2014, the Tennessee State Board of Education (SBE) requested that the Appalachia Regional Comprehensive Center (ARCC) provide assistance to the SBE’s Basic Education Program (BEP) Review Committee. The SBE requested additional information on the use and effectiveness of market-based teacher compensation and market-based incentives by districts and states to recruit science, technology, engineering, and mathematics teachers. The SBE is interested in using this information to encourage school districts to align teacher salaries with the salaries offered by competing employers to improve teacher recruitment and retention in Tennessee, particularly in areas of shortage. In response to the request for information from the SBE, ARCC consulted with the Center on Great Teachers and Leaders (GTL Center), one of the seven content centers in the Comprehensive Center network, to supply research and provide feedback on a review of the report. Identifying a lack of evidence about the impact and costs of such initiatives, GTL Center staff also conducted informal interviews with leaders of emerging market-based compensation initiatives to seek additional, unpublished information. The report includes (1) background information on the BEP Review Committee and the history of teacher compensation reforms in Tennessee, (2) a summary of the literature and evidence on the effectiveness of market pay, and (3) examples of emerging practices, challenges, and lessons learned to support the committee’s decision-making.

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Focusing Formative Assessment on the Needs of English Language Learners

How can formative assessment enhance the teaching and learning of English language learner (ELL) students? What, if anything, from our experience with summative assessment of ELL students can inform effective formative assessment practices? And finally, what are the opportunities and challenges inherent in integrating formative assessment into instruction for ELL students in this era of Common Core and other next generation standards? This paper from the Center on Standards and Assessment Implementation addresses these questions. In addition, the authors argue that in order to use formative assessment effectively in classrooms with ELL students, teachers must attend simultaneously to the students’ needs both in learning content and skills, as well as in developing the English required to express their learning.

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Over the last eight years, CST partner the University of Virginia Partnership for Leaders in Education (UVA/PLE) has worked with over 50 districts and state education agencies across the country to embark on high-level change at the state, district, and school levels through the use of leader competencies. In this guide, we call upon our practice-based experience, expertise, and insight to pro­vide both technical assistance and thought leadership to districts and systems involved in “school turnaround.”

Specifically, we discuss the behavioral event interview (BEI) and turnaround leader competencies, and we explain how each of these can support the turnaround endeavor. A BEI is a particular type of interview that allows candidates’ suitability for a position to emerge by measuring their competencies, which are ways of behaving, acting, and feel­ing that support a person’s performance in a particular role. This guide provides a ratio­nale for using BEIs and competencies, and it takes an in-depth look at how they might be used in practice. It also explores how sev­eral districts and states use these research-based processes to improve selection as well as other human resource functions, such as school assignment and professional development.

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This Special Issues Brief from the Center on Great Teachers and Leaders offers insight into three human capital management policies that are critical for career and technical education (CTE) teachers: certification, performance evaluation, and professional development.

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School improvement has long been a priority for state education agencies and education leaders. The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) identifies new responsibilities and opportunities for leaders of state education agencies as they work to turn around low-performing schools.  This report from the Center on School Turnaround provides a national overview of the reactions of state education agency leaders to ESSA as it applies to school improvement.

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A P-3 Approach and its Effectiveness in Closing Achievement Gaps: Hawaii's P-3 Initiative

A P-3 Approach and its Effectiveness in Closing Achievement Gaps, a presentation from the Center on Enhancing Early Learning Outcomes (CEELO), describes implementation of the Hawaii P-3 Initiative, along with findings from a five-year RAND evaluation of the Initiative which showed a statistically significant improvement in third grade reading scores in the five communities, narrowing the achievement gap. CEELO’s GG Weisenfeld presented with Karen Lee and Kim Guieb from Hawaii P-20 at the National Association of Elementary School Principals on July 7 2016 in National Harbor, MD.