Virtual School Meanderings

July 29, 2015

REL Southeast Director’s Email – July 2015

From yesterday’s inbox…

The latest news and updates from the REL Southeast
at Florida State University
View this email in your browser
REL Southeast Email Header

Greetings from the Regional Educational Laboratory Southeast!

As summer comes to a close and educators throughout the region return to classrooms, we invite you to explore the info-graphics recently added to our homepage. These info-graphics illustrate key concepts and findings in a fun and informative way. Look for additional info-graphics to be added throughout the year and as always, we thank you for continuing to improve education in the southeast.
                              

Barbara Foorman, Ph.D.
Director, REL Southeast

Contact Us

REL Southeast at Florida State University
http://rel-se.fsu.edu
2010 Levy Avenue, Suite 100
Tallahassee, FL 32310
This Director’s Email was developed by REL Southeast under Contract ED-IES-12-C-0011 from the U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences.  The content does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of IES or the U.S. Department of Education, nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. government.

July 23, 2015

McREL e-News July 2015 || Connecting Vision With Action

Trying to get caught up a bit from the lack of traffic due to the guest blog entry yesterday.  Another one from Monday’s inbox…

Improve educational outcomes. McREL e-News online.

July 2015

Research Roundup

Mapping State Proficiency Standards Onto NAEP Scales: Results from the 2013 NAEP Reading and Mathematics Assessments  

National Center for Education Statistics
A new report from the National Center for Education Statistics compares 4th and 8th grade students’ performance on the 2013 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) with their performance on their own state tests in 2013, finding that definitions of proficiency continue to vary state by state; what one state might consider proficient might be significantly higher or lower than another state or the NAEP.

Why many students with A’s in math don’t major in it

The Hechinger Report
A recent study, in which more than 9,000 college calculus students were surveyed, reveals that public recognition for math abilities and interest in math play a larger role in a student becoming a “math person” than do the student’s math abilities or grades.

Study: Smartphones without directed learning activities may be detrimental to learning

THE Journal
A yearlong study on technology by the National Science Foundation reveals that first-time smartphone users at the university level who were not given directed learning activities related to smartphone use found the phones to be a distraction from learning.

Events and Opportunities

Destination Denver: McREL’s summer professional development

 

Our summer professional development is underway in Denver! We’re still accepting registrations for our remaining workshops and institutes. Gain insights and learn best-practice strategies you can apply right away. You’ll leave knowing how to make changes in teaching, leading, and learning that result in better outcomes.

 

Bring your colleagues: Groups of three or more people from the same district receive a 10% discount on registration.

 

Classroom Instruction That Works with English-Language Learners

July 27-28

Using Technology with Classroom Instruction That Works 

July 29-30

 

Upcoming conferences

 

Visit with our researchers and consultants at the following conferences to hear the latest insights and discoveries we’ve made:

Alabama Department of Education MEGA Summer Conference in Mobile, Ala., July 22-24

 

Pacific Education Conference in the Republic of the Marshall Islands, July 28-31

 

Colorado Association of School Executives Conference in Breckenridge, Colo., July 29-31

 

Nebraska Administrators’ Days in Kearney, Neb. July 29-31

Perspectives

 

Headlines

Introducing the McREL Solutions Portal: Your toolkit for in-house professional development

We are pleased to announce the launch of the McREL Solutions Portal, a comprehensive online library of resources designed to help professional development leaders enhance workshops and meetings held in their school districts.

 

For decades, McREL has created a wealth of research-based materials that help teachers and leaders hone their professional practice and support higher levels of student growth. Until now, these materials have been available only through our consultants working directly with client districts. The Solutions Portal now gives district staff direct access to these materials-including training materials, presentations, videos, activity and planning guides, and much more. The materials address a wide scope of subjects, from research-based instructional strategies and leadership development to educational technology, formative assessment, and math and science education.

 

Access to materials on the Portal is tiered. Some materials are accessible to anyone visiting the site, but complete access to the entire library of resources requires an annual subscription. New resources will be added continually to the Portal.

 

The Portal supplements McREL’s direct service to districts. McREL’s skilled education consultants continue to provide client schools and districts with strategic consulting and onsite training and support.

BrightBytes partners with McREL to release Leadership module 

BrightBytes, an award-winning educational research and analysis organization, is pleased to announce the addition of a Leadership module to its Clarity platform. Created in partnership with McREL, the Leadership module empowers educational organizations to grow and develop exceptional leaders and track the progress of their improvement initiatives.

 

The Leadership module is based on McREL’s research and training program on the school-level and district-level leadership practices that have the largest impact on student outcomes. The module provides personalized, actionable next steps for leadership teams based on data collected from staff regarding their perceptions of purposeful community, managing change, and focus of leadership.

 

BrightBytes’ Clarity platform has a variety of solutions that help educational leaders make better, data-driven decisions for student learning. Each module on the platform gives schools, districts, and states very specific next steps on how to use their strengths to address gaps, enabling them to prioritize learning initiatives and allocate investments for maximum impact.

 

Read our complete press release.

In This Issue

Connect with Us on Social Media

    

For the latest in professional development opportunities, education news, research, and McREL employment opportunities, follow us on our social media channels.

 

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter View our profile on LinkedIn

 

Find us on Google+ View our videos on YouTube Visit our blog

REL Pacific on Twitter 

Follow @RELPacific on Twitter for the latest on education research, the National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance, and Institute of Education Sciences projects in the Pacific region, plus engaging infographics, videos, and more.

 

North Central Comprehensive Center on Twitter

 

Follow@NorthCentralCC on Twitter for updates on work with state education agencies in Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming.

McREL International | 1.800.858.6830 | Fax 303.337.3005
4601 DTC Blvd., Suite 500
Denver, CO 80237
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McREL International | 4601 DTC Blvd., Suite 500 | Denver | CO | 80237

July 4, 2015

Early Childhood Professional Learning, School District Turnaround, and Developmental Education Reform

Yet another item from Wednesday’s inbox…

July 2015WestEd.org | Email to a Friend | View in browser | View Past Issues   WestEd on FacebookWestEd on TwitterWestEd on Google+WestEd LinkedIn
WestEd
E-Bulletin
Welcome to the WestEd E-Bulletin, presenting this month’s picks of the latest research-based projects and services, innovative new resources, and upcoming professional development events—all designed to help learners succeed in school and career.
R&D Alert Online

Replicating District Turnaround: What Works Is Customization

Read the latest R&D Alert Online article about lessons learned from WestEd’s extensive experience applying turnaround principles and customizing them for effective implementation in school districts.

Also check out the latest print edition of R&D Alert. Articles highlight engaging students to address school problems, using data to transform teaching, helping early educators address challenging behavior, and closing the achievement gap in science.

QTEL English LearnerQuality Teaching for English Learners (QTEL): Customized Professional Development

English learners are charged with learning a new language while also participating in grade-level academic work. QTEL gives schools and districts the tools to design rigorous, customized quality instruction aligned with new standards, and engages and accelerates English learners’ academic literacy and content knowledge.

Learn about the QTEL approach.

ToddlerWEBINARS & RESOURCES

Professional Learning for Early Childhood Professionals: Free Archived Webinars & Resources

View these webinars, and read related resources, to learn how to support children’s cognitive, social, and emotional development, and gain strategies for tackling common challenges facing early childhood leaders:

The webinars are sponsored by the Early Education Effectiveness Exchange (E4), a project of First 5 California.

ReportNEW RESOURCE

Reforming Developmental Education to Better Support Students’ Postsecondary Success in the Common Core Era

Research shows college completion rates are particularly low among students who are required to take developmental (i.e., remedial) courses. Download this briefexamining two states’ recent efforts to redesign their developmental education programs to support student success.

RAPSA ReportNEW RESOURCE

Supporting the Success of Students at Risk of Dropping Out of High School: Policy Forum Proceedings

Academic and personal circumstances can make it difficult for some students to attend school regularly and earn a diploma. A recent policy forum explored education policy and practice options, focusing on alternative accountability measures, to improve outcomes for at-risk students and the alternative schools that serve them.

Read the key takeaways from the forum, plus recommendations for schools, districts, and policymakers.

Genes & Traits

Making Sense of SCIENCE—Genes & Traits for Teachers of Grades 5-12: 30% Discount!

Making Sense of SCIENCE courses provide all the ingredients for building a scientific way of thinking in both teachers and students.

This new resource—a professional development course—supports the learning of key concepts related to genetics, from the origins of traits to the many factors that influence gene expression.

Learn more about this Making Sense of SCIENCE course.

CSAI

Center on Standards & Assessment Implementation: Research Support and Technical Assistance for States

The Center on Standards & Assessment Implementation (CSAI), a collaboration between WestEd and CRESST, aims to provide state education agencies with the support and research findings they need to make informed decisions about standards, assessment, and accountability policies.

Visit the Center on Standards & Assessment Implementation website to learn more and to access interactive tools and the CSAI resource library.

July 2015

WestEd.org | Email to a Friend | Subscribe WestEd FacebookWestEd TwitterWestEd Google +WestEd LinkedIn

Copyright © 2015 WestEd. All rights reserved.
Our mailing address is:

WestEd

730 Harrison Street

San Francisco, CA 94107

Add us to your address book

June 27, 2015

McREL e-News June 2015 || Take the guesswork out of school improvement

From Thursday’s inbox…

Improve educational outcomes. McREL e-News online.

June 2015

Research Roundup

Effective digital learning games blend the virtual and the real, study finds  

Education Week
  

Researchers from Carnegie Mellon University have found that interactive, mixed-reality digital learning games that blend real physics principles with virtual, simulated elements offered through the games are more effective for younger learners than flat-screen or simple-control versions.

Five social disadvantages that depress student performance: Why schools alone can’t close achievement gaps

Economic Policy Institute
A recent report from the Economic Policy Institute identifies five specific social and economic factors that affect student achievement: parenting practices, single parenthood, irregular work schedules for parents, lack of access to health care, and lead exposure. It suggests that, in addition to school and teacher incentive programs, amelioration of these disadvantages through school improvement initiatives could lead to better student outcomes.

Events and Opportunities

Destination Denver: McREL’s summer professional development

 

Our summer professional development is underway in Denver! Register now for our workshops and institutes to gain insights and learn best-practice strategies you can apply right away. You’ll leave knowing how to make changes in teaching, leading, and learning that result in better outcomes.

 

Bring your colleagues: Groups of three or more people from the same district receive a 10% discount on registration.

 

Classroom Instruction That Works

July 13-15

Classroom Instruction That Works–Facilitator Training 

July 13-17

Balanced Leadership Institute for School-Level Leaders

July 20-25

If you are unable to register for the entire six-day institute, you can also register for these individual Balanced Leadership sessions:

Balanced Leadership Overview, July 20

Developing a Purposeful Community, July 21-22

Managing Change, July 23-24

 

Classroom Instruction That Works with English-Language Learners

July 27-28

Using Technology with Classroom Instruction That Works 

July 29-30

 

Upcoming conferences

 

Visit with our researchers and consultants at the following conferences to hear the latest insights and discoveries we’ve made:

ASCD Conference on Teaching Excellence in Nashville, Tenn., June 26-28.

McREL sessions:

Friday, June 26, “Creating the Environment for Learning: Implementing a New Instruction Planning Framework,” presented by Howard Pitler

Friday, June 26, “Using AWSM to Improve Formative Assessment Practices,” presented by Kathleen Dempsey and Anne Tweed

Saturday, June 27, “Academic Language Learning for ALLs and ELLs,” presented by Jane Hill

National Association of Elementary School Principals Annual Conference in Long Beach, Calif., June 30-July 2.

McREL institutes and sessions:

Monday, June 29, pre-conference institute on creating purposeful school communities with Matt Seebaum from McREL and Carol Riley from NAESP

Tuesday, June 30, “Using McREL’s Balanced Leadership Framework as a Lens for Mentoring and Coaching,” presented by Matt Seebaum

Tuesday, June 30, NAESP Mentor Reunion and Reception (mentors only)—-evening reception sponsored by McREL

Wednesday, July 1, NAESP and McREL Balanced Leadership and Mentor Program Focus Group

Perspectives

Educational Leadership, Summer 2015 | Getting Unstuck
When your school hits a performance plateau during an improvement initiative, do you find yourself doubling down on your efforts? In the summer edition of ASCD’s Educational Leadershipmagazine, Bryan Goodwin, McREL’s CEO and president, suggests suggests leaders take an inside-out approach to improvement, including the creation of rapid, iterative improvement cycles, and peer and observation coaching that lead to better insights into a school’s challenges.

McREL Blog | How to make excitement for learning contagious

 

In a new blog post from McREL consultant Cheryl Abla, enthusiasm and humor in the classroom are front and center as she describes their important roles in learning. Read herpost on the McREL blog.

McREL Blog | Look before you launch: 6 questions to ask before you add more tech to your school

  

Howard Pitler, McREL’s executive director of digital solutions, offers advice on six important questions to ask—-and answer—-before making any major technology purchase for your school in a new poston the McREL blog.

Headlines

Dr. Stephanie Stoll Dalton joins McREL as new director of Regional Educational Laboratory (REL) Pacific

 

Dr. Stephanie Stoll Dalton will serve as the new director of REL Pacific beginning July 1. She comes to McREL from the U.S. Department of Education where, for the last 10 years, she has been director of the Higher Education Act Title II Teacher Preparation and State Credentialing Accountability Program. In her earlier years of service at the Department of Education, she was director of the Teacher Quality Enhancement Grants Program and was a program officer within the REL program, specifically serving the REL Pacific from 2001 to 2003.

 

REL Pacific, which McREL operates from its regional office in Honolulu, Hawaii, is one of 10 federal regional educational laboratories administered by the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences.

 

Read our complete press release.

NASA’s Dawn Mission orbits dwarf planet Ceres
After seven years of cruising at stunning speeds, NASA’s Dawn Mission went into orbit for the first time around the dwarf planet Ceres on March 6. On May 9, the California Institute of Technology hosted a Space Science Festival for families to celebrate this achievement, which included a unique set of streamed presentations: Small Worlds 101, To Boldly Go…Well, You Know: NASA’s Dawn Mission to the Asteroid Belt, and Exploring New Worlds in Our Solar System.
McREL has supported the Dawn Mission’s education and communications team since before launch in 2007 through professional development, curriculum, web and multimedia design, and social media. Follow Dawn news, view spectacular images, and explore videos and education materials on theDawn Mission website or join the Dawn newsletter mailing list.
In This Issue

Connect with Us on Social Media

    

For the latest in professional development opportunities, education news, research, and McREL employment opportunities, follow us on our social media channels.

 

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter View our profile on LinkedIn

 

Find us on Google+ View our videos on YouTube Visit our blog

REL Pacific on Twitter 

Follow @RELPacific on Twitter for the latest on education research, the National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance, and Institute of Education Sciences projects in the Pacific region, plus engaging infographics, videos, and more.

 

North Central Comprehensive Center on Twitter

 

Follow@NorthCentralCC on Twitter for updates on work with state education agencies in Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming.

McREL International | 1.800.858.6830 | Fax 303.337.3005
4601 DTC Blvd., Suite 500
Denver, CO 80237
Forward to a friend
This email was sent to mkbarbour@gmail.com by news@mcrel.org | Privacy Policy.
 
McREL International | 4601 DTC Blvd., Suite 500 | Denver | CO | 80237

June 6, 2015

REL Southeast Director’s Email – June 2015

From Wednesday’s inbox…

The latest news and updates from the REL Southeast
at Florida State University
View this email in your browser
REL Southeast Email Header

Greetings from the Regional Educational Laboratory Southeast!

As we transition into the summer months, now is a wonderful time to explore the many offerings available on the REL Southeastwebsite. We’ve highlighted some of our most popular resources below, but we encourage you to explore the site further and discover the engaging work of our research alliances and the numerous research products we’ve developed. Thank you for continuing to improve education in the southeast.

Barbara Foorman, Ph.D.
Director, REL Southeast

Ask A REL

Ask A REL is a reference desk service available to those of you interested in accessing additional research-based information to guide your practice. The archive of Ask A RELs can be found by following this link: http://rel-se.fcrr.org/resources/ask-a-rel_responses.aspx. Here, you will find previously-answered Ask A RELs arranged by categories such as curriculum and instruction, effective leaders, literacy, and school climate.

Archived Events

The REL Southeast maintains a comprehensive archive of past events, including recorded webinars. Explore our available content by following this link: http://rel-se.fcrr.org/events/archived_events.aspx, or click the event below to watch our latest presentation.Preschool Dual Language Learners Intervention Practices
Recorded Monday, March 2, 2015
Online Webinar

Contact Us

REL Southeast at Florida State University
http://rel-se.fsu.edu
2010 Levy Avenue
Suite 100
Tallahassee, FL 32310
This Director’s Email was developed by REL Southeast under Contract ED-IES-12-C-0011 from the U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences.  The content does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of IES or the U.S. Department of Education, nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. government.
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