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The AACTE/CAPSS Committee and the Alliance Districts Committee reported on their committee work this year at the CAPSS Board meeting on February 7th, 2020. All of the committee work is incredibly important to CAPSS and determines our priorities for the year. Each month, two committees will report on their work and we will include their summary reports in The Leaders Report.

AACTE/CAPSS Joint Committee

Alliance Districts Committee

PDK International is launching its inaugural National Institute on Central Office Leadership (NICOL) at PDK2020. NICOL is an essential three-day learning experience focused on helping school districts and its leaders operationalize equity.
As NICOL participants, you will:

  • Develop strategies that ensure equitable practices in your district
  • Network with colleagues and experts
  • Improve your practice with expert researchers and knowledgeable practitioners
  • Learn technical and adaptive solutions that make equity a central focus of your work and all aspects of the system
  • Attend additional programming focused on teacher recruitment, retention, and development

By participating at NICOL, you will be a part of the PDK2020 conference.  In addition to your work on equity, you will also be able to watch the best and brightest future educators compete and perform at the national Educators Rising conference.

NICOL participants have the option to register for our symposium, Grow the Teaching Profession: Recruiting, Retaining, and Developing the Next Generation of Educators, as a pre-conference session.  Built on the success of Educators Rising, our Grow Your Own Symposium  will teach you how to develop and implement your own teacher pathway program to support future educators at both district and state levels. This pre-conference session can be added to your registration for an additional $100.

INFORMATION/REGISTRATION

Hello everyone,
 
I want you to be aware of an excellent opportunity for all Connecticut superintendents. I know that you have been working incredibly hard on equity, cultural competence and we have been doing the same at CAPSS. We are always looking for ways to support your work. I am pleased to tell you that we are working diligently in these areas in close collaboration with Commissioner Cardona, Deputy Commissioner Charlene Russell- Tucker and their staff .

As a result of this collaboration, the upcoming annual  conference, Dismantling Systemic Racism, sponsored by SERC, will have a separate strand for superintendents only. There will be two sessions, the first, led by Dr. Darren Graves based on his book, Schooling for Critical Consciousness.
 
The second session will be presented by three Connecticut superintendents, Sharon Locke, Paul Freeman and Rydell Harrison , who will discuss their district efforts on equity. Both will be interactive sessions, planned especially for you. As I stated earlier, both of these sessions will be for superintendents only.

The SDE will provide copies of Dr. Graves ‘ book for all participants and there will be follow up sessions with Dr. Graves provided to participants.

The conference will take place on May 20th. Please save the date and we will be in touch with further details as they emerge. Please contact me if you have any questions.

Many thanks,

Fran Rabinowitz
Executive Director
CAPSS

CASBO is dedicated to acknowledging exemplary business managers and their service to the betterment of education for the students of Connecticut.  CASBO has three recognition awards—Connecticut Celebrated School Business Official Award, Rising Star Award and Best Practices Award.  Annually, nominations are sought in December through mid-February.  The Selection Committee is comprised of CASBO members, a CABE representative, and a CAPSS representative.

The award nominations have been completely redesigned to match ASBO International’s awards so that Connecticut winning Celebrated SBO and Best Practices nominations will be submitted for consideration for the prestigious Eagle and Pinnacle Awards.

The Connecticut Celebrated School Business Official and Rising Star Awards were created to acknowledge the value and contributions of outstanding school business officials. Nominees are evaluated based upon their contributions to their profession, regardless of the size of their districts and their job titles. These awards are meant to honor an individual both for current accomplishments and sustained contributions.   The Rising Star Award is reserved for those who have had their certification for 10 or less years.

The purpose of the Best Practices Recognition is to identify effective and innovative uses of public resources in support of education, and to disseminate the ideas or practices for the benefit of public schools in Connecticut.

Each award winner receives a beautiful award presented at the President’s Dinner, complimentary Institute registration and tickets to the President’s Dinner.  The call for award nominations will be accepted until February 29, 2020 via the CASBO website.

I am happy to provide information on your business manager’s service to CASBO – please contact me at your convenience.

Sharon S. Bruce, CAE
Executive Director
Connecticut Association of School Business Officials
11 High Gate Lane, West Hartford, CT 06107-1010
860.519.0023 office   860.682.3482 cell
www.ct-asbo.org

More information and to make a nomination

Beginning the fall 2020 semester, qualified Connecticut residents can pursue a degree or certificate tuition and fee-free. The Pledge to Advance Connecticut, or PACT, will support full-time students who are entering Connecticut community colleges in the fall 2020 semester.

To qualify, students must:

  • Be a graduate of any Connecticut high school, GED or home school program
  • Be a first-time college student
  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®), and accept all available financial aid
  • Enroll and stay enrolled as full-time students (12 credits per semester)
  • Participate in a degree or credit-bearing certificate program
  • Maintain satisfactory academic progress

View/Download the Flyer

WEBSITE

Join us Monday & Tuesday, March 23-24, 2020, in Norwood, MA, for the New England Secondary School Consortium’s eleventh annual conference, School Redesign in Action. This year's theme: equity in our classrooms, schools, and communities. Education stakeholders from across the country will share success stories, exchange best practices, and continue to build momentum for innovations that will prepare all students for success in the colleges, careers, and communities of the 21st century.

Learn more, see the schedule, or register here.

Local After Hours PD Mini-Series by the CT ASCD

Kate Roberts- Tuesday, March 3rd- 4:00pm-6:00pm
Engaging Adolescents with a Novel Approach

Kate Roberts, author of a new book, A Novel Approach: Whole-Class Novels, Student Centered Teaching and Choice, will be here to present how we can find student-centered, balanced approaches to teaching reading on the secondary level. Register by February 24th.

Penny Kittle- Monday, May 18th - 4:00pm-6:00pm
Empowering & Engaging Adolescents through Literacy

Penny Kittle will join us to share strategies that empower students through independence in literacy. Her belief in curiosity, engagement, and deep thinking, for both students and their teachers, is the foundation of her work. Register by May 11th.

MORE INFORMATION

CONNECTICUT 5TH GRADE EDUCATORS:

The Connecticut State Police Clearinghouse for Information on Missing Children & Missing Endangered Adults and U.S. Department of Justice invites all Connecticut 5th graders to participate in the 2020 National Missing Children’s Day Poster Contest.

The National Missing Children’s Day Poster Contest is a nationwide contest designed to promote awareness among teachers, parents/guardians and children and engage them in discussions about safety. May 25 is National Missing Children's Day, dedicated to encouraging parents, guardians, caregivers, and others to ensure that child safety is a priority.

The poster contest is open to 5th graders at all schools (including home schools), school districts, local governing bodies, PTAs, Boys & Girls Clubs, or other organizations with 5th graders.

The state winner will receive a national award certificate from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and his or her poster will be selected to go to the national judging competition. The national winner, his/her teacher and parents/guardians, and the state manager will be invited to Washington, D.C., to participate in the U.S. DOJ‛s National Missing Children‛s Day ceremony on May 20, 2020.

Missing Children’s Day Packet information can be found here.

February 25, 2020, is the strict deadline for submissions to the CT State Police!

Submissions must be complete with poster, poster contest application (pages 6-7 of packet) and parent/guardian release consent form (page 8 of packet).

Each participating location will need to complete an internal selection process and mail the Top Five (5) posters per location/school with required documents to:

Connecticut State Police
Public Information Office
1111 Country Club Road
Middletown CT 06457

If you have any questions, please email csp.pio@ct.gov.

CHET Advance Scholarship Highlights for the 2019-20 School Year

  • 224 scholarships, exclusively for Connecticut high school freshmen.
    • Scholarships to be awarded to at least 20 students in each Connecticut county.
    • 32 scholarships are reserved for freshmen from Technical High Schools, plus they are also eligible in the county categories.
  • Two ways to apply and receive money for college, trade school, or other post-secondary education.
    • 160 merit scholarships of up to $2,023 will be awarded to freshmen who complete a civic engagement assignment.
    • 64 scholarships of up to $1,250 will be awarded to freshmen who enter a random drawing.  (Students who complete the civic engagement assignment and not selected for a merit award are also eligible to be selected via the random drawing.)
    • All award recipients can receive a potential $500 match (in addition to the above) if $500 is saved in a CHET account by December of the student’s senior year of high school.
  • The deadline to apply is March 12, 2020 and schools and students can visit www.chetadvance.com for scholarship details and the application link.
  • If students need technical assistance with the application, they can contact ISTS customer service by emailing contactus@applyISTS.com or calling 855-670-ISTS (4787).  Live chat support is also available through the application website.

READ THE COMPLETE PRESS RELEASE

July 20-July 31, 2020 NEH Summer Institute for Teachers

Apply to join history, science and technology teachers from across the United States for a National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute for Teachers: The Cold War Through the Collections of the Intrepid Museum! The Summer Institute will immerse participating teachers in scholarly research as well as the artifacts and oral histories in the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum’s collection that embody the Cold War era. Integrating content exploring the historical context of technological innovation, the Institute will serve a national group of 25 teachers in order to deepen their understanding and increase confidence in their ability to explore the subject thoroughly, critically and engagingly with their students.

These projects are designed principally for full-time or part-time teachers and librarians in public, charter, independent, and religiously affiliated schools, as well as home schooling parents. Museum educators and other K-12 school system personnel—such as administrators, substitute teachers, and curriculum developers—are also eligible to participate. Applicants must be United States citizens, residents of U.S. jurisdictions, or foreign nationals who have been residing in the United States or its territories for at least the three years immediately preceding the application deadline.
Each participant receives a stipend of $2,100 for the two week institute.

For more information and application instructions:

The Cold War through the Collections of the Intrepid Museum

Classroom audio systems offer many benefits to schools. They have been shown to positively affect student achievement and engagement, as well as reduce fatigue and vocal strain for teachers. Some might argue that audio systems don’t offer the same benefits in today’s classrooms where traditional seating is shifting to flexible seating, and teachers don’t just lecture at the front of the room. How does classroom audio fit into new learning environments? How can teachers use today’s technology in conjunction with classroom audio to enhance the learning experience?

CHANGES IN MODERN CLASSROOMS
Teachers used to spend much of their day sharing information with the class from the front of the room, but teaching methods are changing. Teachers act as facilitators of learning, facilitating class discussions, visiting with small groups, or working with individual students. Class time is now dedicated to students researching and learning in small groups, and students spend more time in front of the class, presenting what they’ve learned. With the classroom environment changed so much, how does sound amplification fit into this mix?

The changes in today’s classroom environment make it even more important for teachers to have a microphone/audio system. As teachers move around the classroom, student seating varies, and the increase in students collaborating, hearing a teacher in the classroom has become more difficult. With a classroom audio system, students can hear the teacher, no matter their location in the room. When teachers need to talk to the class during or after small group work, having their voice distributed throughout the classroom makes it easier for everyone to hear a call to attention. When students are presenting their work with the class, they can also use the teacher microphone, or a separate handheld microphone, to make sure everyone can hear them clearly.

INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGY
The advancement of technology in today’s classrooms provides additional options when using classroom audio systems. With a computer and classroom microphone, teachers can use lecture capture—software that allows the teacher to capture a desktop recording along with their voice from the microphone. This will enable teachers to create digital learning opportunities for students who are sick, away for extra-curricular activities, or hospital homebound, providing anywhere anytime learning.

Schools can integrate interactive displays with their classroom audio systems. These displays offer striking visuals, but their sound is not always clear, nor does it always carry well. With audio system integration, sound from presentations and videos can be distributed throughout the classroom, making multimedia more enjoyable for everyone.

Today’s classroom setups and teaching methods are always evolving, and classroom audio systems offer many benefits for teachers and students as a part of this evolution. As teachers use audio enhancement systems to enhance their voice or the voices of their students, lessons can be more engaging and understandable for everyone in the room. As technology is integrated, teachers can take advantage of digital learning opportunities that are created easily with lecture capture software to give students every opportunity to learn. With the increase of student presentations and the use of multimedia use in classrooms, audio systems can optimize technology utilized to create a more engaging environment for everyone.

CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW?
In the successful publication of The Seven Secrets of Learning Revealed by Dr. Laurence Martel, Dr. Martel states one of the most important factors of learning is the factor of sound. Dr. Martel explains, “In today’s classrooms, teaching is done by talking. For people to process spoken language, the trainer, or teacher's voice, must be 17db (decibels) louder than the noise in the classroom environment” (The Seven Secrets of Learning Revealed by Dr. Laurence Martel). This is more evident in today’s classrooms than ever, and the use of an audio enhancement system can be a game-changer in the classroom.  

Classrooms are noisy. Even when students are quietly working, you can hear computers humming, clocks ticking, air conditioners thumping, ceiling fans whirring, chairs shifting, feet shuffling, and many other competing sounds. If these sounds are reverberating off linoleum floors and bare walls, the noise level can make it very difficult for students to hear and learn. “It could be argued that all students can benefit from sound amplification, as it creates a more favorable learning environment. If children (and adults) could hear better, clearer, and more consistently, they would have the opportunity to learn more effectively” (The Seven Secrets of Learning Revealed by Dr. Laurence Martel).

It is safe to say that, if students can’t hear the lesson, they can’t understand what’s being taught. Whether it’s the teacher, another student speaking, or one of the many resource’s teachers use now, hearing and understanding material presented is critical to student learning.

CONTACT

Jeff Anderson
President
Audio Enhancement, Inc.
(800) 383-9362

This award is given annually to a UConn graduate who "has made a significant impact on education, has a national reputation for her/his work, has been an inspiration to other professionals, and has shown continued involvement with the Neag School of Education," according to a news release.

Carver will be formally recognized at Neag's 22nd annual Alumni Awards Celebration on March 14, 2020.

Read the Post

Other 2020 Alumni Award Recipients

 

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt logo

WEBINAR: Experience Amira Assessment! This new classroom assistant driven by artificial intelligence (AI) truly listens to students to accurately assess oral reading fluency (ORF) and screens students who are at risk for dyslexia. Based on the TPRI, developed by The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston and The University of Texas, the Amira Dyslexia Screener identifies children at risk of dyslexia and employs Rapid Automatic Naming (RAN) and other techniques found to be reliable indicators of the brain function associated with dyslexia.

Listen to the Webinar

OVERVIEW

Each year, the Connecticut Office of Tourism offers two college scholarship grants for Connecticut residents pursuing degrees in hospitality, travel or tourism at accredited colleges and universities. These grants are funded by the generous contributions of the Connecticut tourism industry and named for two respected tourism leaders:  

  • The Richard B. Combs Hospitality Scholarship Grant ($1,000)
  • The Walter Schoenknecht Tourism & Travel Scholarship Grant ($1,000)  

Eligibility

To be eligible to apply for these scholarships, a student must be:

  • a resident of Connecticut;
  • a senior at a Connecticut high school (public or private), a high school graduate who has not yet begun a college curriculum, or an enrolled undergraduate or graduate student at an accredited university or college;
  • attending an accredited university or college on a full- or part-time basis (minimum six credit hours) and pursuing a tourism or hospitality degree program.

Grants are awarded on the basis of academic and personal achievement as well as a demonstrated interest in the hospitality or tourism industry.

Grants are awarded on the basis of academic and personal achievement as well as a demonstrated interest in the hospitality or tourism industry.

How to Apply

Complete the application form and submit it by the due date.

Include the following with your application:

  •  two letters of recommendation (one academic and one personal);
  •  a transcript of the current academic record;
  •  personal Letter of Intent stating how this grant will help you achieve your academic goals;
  •  personal resume.

Send your completed application and all accompanying documents to the

Scholarship Grant Committee
Connecticut Office of Tourism
450 Columbus Blvd.,
Hartford, CT  06103
Contact

For additional information or questions, contact Rosemary Bove at (860) 500-2355 or rosemary.bove@ct.gov.

Right At School logo

A growing body of research highlights significant positive impact on children who participate in quality afterschool programs. These same benefits extend to school district performance and counteract substantial risks associated with lack of supervision after 3pm. Yet working parent demand far exceeds available programming, and many existing programs just babysit, missing a critical opportunity to provide meaningful enrichment that yields long-term rewards.

What the research says…

BENEFITS to CHILDREN of high quality afterschool programming are significant and long-lasting.

  • Better grades, test scores, and graduation rates; up to 42% increase in math and reading performance; improved overall academic performance for 50%+ attendees
  • 65% have improved homework completion and class participation
  • Improved behavior for nearly 60% of participants

Download the full report

College Board logo

If I asked you “what is the ideal scholarship” you would probably say a scholarship that isn’t based on merit or test scores or GPA because there are plenty of those types of scholarships already and they are limited to the highest performing students. Next, you might say a scholarship that doesn’t require a long list of requirements, such as submitting an essay or gathering recommendations from teachers and counselors or completing a lengthy application process. Next, you would likely say a scholarship that is not a one-and-done, but instead gives students multiple opportunities to win. Lastly, a scholarship that makes money available to students by rewarding them for the steps they are already taking as they prepare for college, with no extra burden and no additional time-consuming stress.

Surprisingly, such a scholarship already exists! It is called the College Board Opportunity Scholarship and is open to all students beginning their junior year of high school. The Opportunity Scholarship was developed last school year and was designed to reward students for taking the steps towards college that research shows will more likely result in them getting there. The best part is that most students are already taking these important actions and the Opportunity Scholarship is just one more incentive to keep students advancing along the path to college.

Read more

Conroy Reading Services

Teachers don’t yet have the skills they need

Just under six years ago, the Connecticut Office of Legislative Research published a report on the status of dyslexia under the state’s special education laws. In January 2015, it became legal for a Planning and Placement Team to diagnose and label a special-education student under the category of Specific Learning Disability/Dyslexia. In that year, many teachers, myself included, had little to no knowledge of how to screen for and assess dyslexia, notice its symptoms, and provide specially designed instruction to a dyslexic student. Yet the International Dyslexia Association estimates that as many as 1 in 5 people worldwide may have some symptoms of dyslexia. If Connecticut serves over half a million students each year, that translates to over 100,000 students who may show a reading-based learning disability or related deficits. Those that don’t qualify for special education services will struggle to keep up with their peers.

Not until 2017 did our state pass legislation requiring teachers applying for special education certification to complete a “program of study in the diagnosis and remediation of reading and language arts that includes...instruction in the detection and recognition of, and evidence-based structured literacy interventions for, students with dyslexia.”  Last year, Connecticut established a task force to analyze the implementation of our dyslexia-related laws. We can and need to do so much more.

Read more

IXL logo

Distinctive Schools runs a network of charter schools with four schools in Chicago and two in the Twin Cities area in Minnesota. They serve an urban population with a high percentage of students qualifying for free and reduced lunch and have many students with special needs. When they implemented the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in 2012, they wanted to find new tools to support students and track progress towards learning goals. IXL helped them transition to the CCSS while empowering teachers and meeting individual student needs.

Building a Flexible Learning Environment
Anthony Claypool, the Director of Curricular Programs and Data for Distinctive Schools, explains that the schools are founded on a personalized learning approach. “It’s important to us that every child has his or her educational needs met,” he says. “Our vision is to get to know students really well and help them know themselves, [including] learning styles, aptitudes, and preferences.” Their research-based learning model is built on the four principles of personalized learning: flexible learning environments, use of learner profiles to plan instruction, mastery-based learning, and individualized learning pathways.

Read more

Sustainable CT logo

Sustainable CT, a statewide nonprofit organization that runs a municipal certification to promote sustainability, equity, and community vibrancy, has recently launched a new funding program, the Community Match Fund. This program, which is open to schools, provides dollar-for-dollar matching funds, up to $25,000 per project, to support projects that make our communities more sustainable. Sustainable CT is already supporting various school projects and encourages schools to apply. Their program has no deadlines, no formal application, no lengthy review period, and minimal reporting requirements.

In order to help project leaders raise funds, Sustainable CT has partnered with ioby, a nonprofit crowdfunding organization that provides an online platform and fundraising coaching and support to help project organizers raise funds. Projects approved for this program will create an online crowdfunding page on ioby that enables them to publicize their projects and solicit contributions. Sustainable CT then matches all donations raised from the community, doubling local investment. In addition to individual donations from the community, Sustainable CT will also match grants, school dollars, municipal dollars, and business contributions, so long as these are part of a community crowdfunding campaign.

While their program is broad and can support many different types of projects, here’s an overview of some of the work that they’re focused on:

  • environmental and climate programs/education                                
  • energy efficiency and renewables                                            
  • composting & recycling
  • food waste reduction
  • community & school gardens
  • arts & culture
  • improving walkability and public transportation
  • land and waterbody use and protection
  • environmental justice
  • creating green spaces
  • promoting and increasing access to healthy and sustainable food networks
  • And much more!

Abe Hilding-Salorio
Community Outreach Manager
Sustainable CT
(860) 465-0256
hildingsalorioa@easternct.edu

Holberton School is a unique alternative to higher education that focuses on training Software and Operations Engineers in two years or less, equipping students from all walks of life with the deep technical, as well as the professional and soft skills, needed for a successful career in this field.

In January 2019, the New Haven campus opened as a non-profit—since then, the innovative model and approach to education has made the program accessible to people from various backgrounds, including people who are choosing to attend Holberton right after high school in place of a more traditional higher education institution.  Here's what we are all about:

  • How we teach is different—At Holberton, students learn by doing, working hands-on with peers and the support from staff on projects. No classes, no lectures, which means students learn in a way that translates directly to what's expected in the workplace in terms of picking up critical collaboration, communication, and problem solving skills.
  • Our admissions process is blind—The school does not consider prior experience or accomplishments, this information isn't even collected. Instead, applicants complete a series of challenges and learn the basics of coding as part of the application, allowing them to determine if this is the right program for them, and if they are motivated to jump into this field in the first place. Aside from passing the application, applicants need a high school diploma or equivalent and be 18 when they start the program.
  • We don't charge upfront tuition—Students don't pay upfront for the program, and there's no cost to apply or attend. Once students leave the program and secure employment, they begin paying a percentage of their income for a short, set period of time (17% for 3.5 years).

This video will give you a bit more insight into what the program is about, including from the students' perspective, and here's a link to a virtual campus tour. You can request the syllabus and program information by following this link.

Nadine Krause
Director at Holberton
(203) 653-9134

WEBSITE

Children in STEM program

The YMCA is in every Connecticut community. We have 21 Y’s; 36 Branches and over 176 Program Sites in Connecticut.

As a leading nonprofit, we are committed to meeting the needs of our families while nurturing the potential of every child and teen by supporting their social-emotional, cognitive and physical development from birth to career. With over 128,000 children (in 2018) experiencing Y values-based programming, we know, where and how children spend their time, is vital to their growth and future success in life.

Learn more about how Connecticut YMCAs Help All Kids Reach Their Potential, and learn more about Connecticut YMCA Before and After School Programs!

Dave Hayward
Connecticut and Rhode Island YMCA State Alliances
56 Chittenden Field Lane
Madison, CT 06443
dave.hayward@yalliance.org
312.835.2225

Connecticut needs outstanding superintendents who insist that every child will achieve excellence and become a successful citizen in the 21st century. Central Connecticut State University prepares superintendents to be these leaders. They understand the importance of building relationships and insisting on success for every student. The program is taught by well- respected superintendent practitioners who know and live every aspect of the position. They impart their knowledge and bring in guest lecturers who are knowledgeable in all aspects of education. When a candidate completes the CCSU Program she/he will be well- prepared and  ready to become that outstanding superintendent who will positively impact thousands of children.

Fran Rabinowitz
Executive Director, CAPSS

More Information

Help spread the word to high school administrators and teachers in your districts: The Connecticut Bar Foundation organizes an annual high school essay contest on timely issue in the law. The contest is open to high school students throughout Connecticut. The finalists and their teachers are recognized at a ceremony at the Connecticut Supreme Court in May and are awarded cash prizes. The essay topic for 2019-2020 is titled “Immigration Situation.”

To find out more visit https://www.ctbarfdn.org/essaycontest.

Entries are due by February 21, 2020.

The 2018 PISA results are out, as are the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), and they re-affirm that the education reforms we put in place some twenty years ago through No Child Left Behind (NCLB) and Race to the Top simply have not worked.  

The scores of US students remain stubbornly low on PISA compared to other nations.  On NAEP, Peggy G. Carr, associate commissioner of NAEP, said “there has been no progress nationally in either math or reading over the past decade and the lowest performing students are doing worse. “  While our CT students overall do well compared to other states, there is still so much to do particularly for our least wealthy students in the state.

Many will argue that these tests do not fully reflect the state of education.  Indeed, the knowledge and skills these items assess are necessary, but not sufficient to reflect a fully robust educational system.  But if we believe that some sort of assessment of skills is important, we have got to ask ourselves why the so-called reforms we put in place have not appeared to raise the level of our students’ performance on the skills NAEP and PISA assess over the last 20 years.

Two nations whose students DO stand out on PISA are Canada and Finland.   
Through the Teacher Leader Fellowship Program at Central Connecticut State University in partnership with ARAMFO, these past two years we have been leading groups of teachers, teacher leaders, K-12 administrators and professors of educational leadership to these two countries to get a sense of what they are doing – and it is starkly different from what we have instituted these past years.

I invite you to take part in these programs to look at what they are doing and think through what elements of their approach we might re-instate in our schools.   See how they train and treat their teachers, see how they allow kids to be kids and give them the time and space to learn through play, see how they instill in their children a sense of responsibility and ownership of their work, see how they allow their teachers the time and space to thoughtfully and meaningfully develop curriculum and plan instruction --- and see how they have NOT embraced the oppressive test, test and more testing rendering school an oppressive place devoid of joy, creativity and a love of learning.  Below is an overview:

WHERE:  Ottawa, Canada
WHEN:  April 13 – April 18, 2020
WHAT:  Itinerary includes visits to pre-K, Elementary, Middle and High Schools across the Renfrew County Public Schools in Ontario (just North of Ottawa) and opportunities for discussion and reflection with students, teachers, teacher leaders, principals, central office staff and board members.  Our delegation is led by Dr. Peter Gamwell, author of The Wonder Wall, international consultant and speaker, who focuses on ways to support creativity and innovation in classrooms -- and by Dr. Pino Buffone, Director of the Renfrew County Public School Board. 

WHERE:  Helsinki, Finland
WHEN:  April 13 – April 18, 2020
WHAT:  Itinerary includes visits to the Finnish National Agency for Education; the Education and Culture Committee of the Parliament of Finland; The Vanttila School and Day Care Center, Espoo to focus on principles of basic and early learning; the Vukki Teacher Training School, K-12, part of the University of Helsinki to focus on student centered learning at this teacher training school; Rikhardinkatu Library and its children’s department; local schools administration in Porvoo, Finland including the Kevatkumpu Educaton Center to focus on management and collaboration; the Suomenlinna Camp School to see and understand Finnish camp school pedagogy; lecture and in-depth conversation with Tim Walker, US and Finnish teacher, author of numerous articles in The Atlantic, author of Teach like Finland: 33 Simple Strategies for a Joyful Classroom, and collaborator with Pasi Sahlberg.

For more information including the specific itineraries, deadlines for participation and costs, please contact betty.sternberg@CCSU.edu or at 860-463-5871 no later than December 13, 2019.

The many roles school social workers perform in public schools.

To CT Public School Superintendents:

As you develop your staffing plans for the 2020-2021 school year, we encourage you to take into consideration the important services that school social workers provide to students, teachers, staff and parents. School social workers are the link between home, school, and community. As members of the educational team comprised of teachers, administrators, pupil services staff, and parents, school social workers promote and support students academic and social success by providing specialized services that include, but not limited to:

  • Individual and group counseling
  • Support groups for students and parents
  • Crisis prevention and intervention
  • Monitoring outcomes of interventions
  • Home visits
  • Addressing and preventing absenteeism
  • Social-developmental assessments
  • Parent education and training
  • Professional case management
  • Information and referral
  • Collaboration with other pupil services professionals
  • Collaboration with community agencies and organizations
  • Advocacy for students, parents, and the school system
  • Administration and supervision of pupil services programs
  • Coordination of programs such as peer support and mentoring
  • Staff development and consultation
  • Policy development, such as discipline and attendance policies

The National Association of Social Workers recommends a ratio of one school social worker to two hundred and fifty students.

For more information on school social work contact the CT Alliance of School Social Workers at info.naswct@socialworkers.org

The Neag School of Education’s Executive Leadership Program has proven over many years to be a very effective program for preparing administrators for school system leadership positions.  Based on the knowledge and skills that school system leaders need to possess, the Program is directed by faculty members who have been successful school system leaders in their own right.  An important component of the Program is the experience that participants have actually working on real problems in a functioning school district under the supervision of an effective school system leader.  For all of these reasons, I urge those of you who aspire to a school system leadership position to give serious consideration to enrolling in the Executive Leadership Program.
~ Fran Rabinowitz

ELP Information Sessions - Flyer

Executive Leadership Program - Recruitment Letter

Executive Leadership Program - Brochure

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt logo
Jordan Friedman, Shaped Staff 

This blog post originally appeared on HMH’s Shaped blog on October 30, 2019. 

There's no denying that the prevalence of digital technology has impacted student learning across disciplines, including reading intervention. What was once initially taught primarily in print has evolved to enable teachers to analyze real-time data to direct learning, better understand striving students' needs and growth, and engage this population of learners.

In honor of the 10th anniversary of System 44, HMH's foundational reading intervention program for Grades 3–12, I chatted with Jay Hillman, Director of Educational Services at the Elmira City School District in Elmira, New York, and he help gathered responses to our questions from teachers who work with him. Below, you can find their combined insights into how reading intervention has evolved in the past two decades as well as advice to maximize student outcomes, ensure a growth mindset, and more. (Responses have been edited for length and clarity.)

Read the complete blog

CAPSS is proud to welcome Right At School for a second year as an Elite sponsor of our association!

Right At School provides safe, engaging, and meaningful before and after school programs to inspire a love of learning, support schools, and give parents peace of mind.

Right At School was founded in 2011 by Dr. Mark Rothschild. He noticed that in many communities, before school and after school care looked more like babysitting than a fun and enriching time for students.  How much more could children grow and explore when supported with high-quality out of school programs?

Eight years later, Right At School is the official after school provider of the AASA. Its highly trained local educators ignite after school joy and community for 35,000 students in over 400 schools across the country all at no cost to districts. Parents love its affordable, flexible options and kids have a blast with its hands-on and fun Disguised LearningTM curriculum.

Right At School logo

You can visit Right At School at Booth #12 at the 2019 CABE/CAPSS Convention! Or, contact Erreick Stewart, Director of School Partnerships, at erreick.stewart@rightatschool.com to learn more about the impact of a world-class after school program.

 

CT Alliance of YMCAs logo

The Connecticut Alliance of YMCAs is comprised of 21 YMCAs, each volunteer led, a charitable organization and a powerful advocate for the needs of children, families and individuals in communities throughout Connecticut. We have provided over $11 million dollars in Financial Assistance to support youth, adults and families who choose to participate in YMCA programs, regardless of their age, gender, income or background, ensuring that everyone has the opportunity to participate in a program which promotes youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. In 2018 YMCAs supported 14,910 children through after school/enrichment programs, 128,920 youth experienced values based programs at YMCAs in Connecticut. Also 4,967 children enrolled in the Y's preschool enrichment programs.

The YMCA is dedicated to nurturing the potential of every child and teen in our communities.

www.ymca.net

David Hayward
Strategic Consultant
Connecticut Alliance of YMCAs
(312) 835-2225

 

Anthony Colannino, ICLE Senior Fellow
This blog post originally appeared on HMH’s Shaped blog on August 26, 2019.

A strong instructional coach is like manna from heaven. Until I had one, I didn’t realize the impact such a person could have on my teachers, my building, and me. This not to say that working with instructional coaches is not without its challenges. It most certainly is filled with potential potholes. But if you—as an education leader—follow some of the steps below, you’re more likely to have happy, productive, and innovative teachers, which will lead to more children learning.

Get on the Same Page
This is not as easy as it sounds. District leadership and initiatives bind most instructional coaches, who also have to serve a school or schools with distinct needs based on culture, staff, and students. This can put coaches in the middle of two masters to serve. Discussing and deciding the most important curriculum, initiatives, or professional development will give your coach a clear plan to best implement central office priorities and meet your unique school’s needs.

Read the complete post

New Resource Highlights and Provides Promising Practices, Proven Models by Districts for Districts

(Hartford, CT) - The Connecticut State Department of Education (CSDE) today launched its new Learn Together, Grow Together CT initiative, which will highlight districts addressing common issues and problems through innovative approaches, ideas and strategies that are producing successful outcomes. Learn Together, Grow Together CT will also promote these promising practices in district profiles inventoried on the CSDE website so that other district leaders and educators can connect with fellow districts and borrow, adapt and put to use these proven models in their own districts and schools. The initiative is part of Education Commissioner Miguel Cardona’s major points of focus to leverage the collective capacity and resources already in place around the state in order to better facilitate collaboration around common goals.
 
“Across the state districts large and small are dealing many of the same issues and challenges that have already been successfully overcome in another Connecticut district. A priority of CSDE is to focus on and share strategies that we know are working. If we can learn from each other and grow together, then we can leverage our collective capacity statewide to address some of the most prevalent hurdles facing us as educators,” said Commissioner Cardona. “This initiative supports our efforts to do a better job of creating lines of communication and sharing best practices to accelerate the most important aspect of everything we do: improving achievement, closing gaps and preparing all of our students for bright and promising futures.”
 
Learn Together, Grow Together CT consists of a social media campaign and dedicated page on CSDE’s website with an inventory of district profiles on promising practices they have implemented as well as the results that have been yielded. Learn Together, Grow Together CTwill identify and promote the most exceptional strategies and encourage districts to connect with their counterparts around the state to learn what impact these approaches are having on the success of students, educators and district operations. Districts can share with CSDE their own promising practices to be highlighted by following CSDE on Facebook and Twitter then tagging @ctdepartmentofeducation in posts and Tweeting at @EducateCT. Posts and Tweets should include the hashtag #LearnGrowCT.
 
The first installment of Learn Together, Grow Together CT will feature with two topic areas: Chronic Absenteeism and Student Attendance; and, College and Career Readiness (“CCR 2.0”). Those profiles include:

  • Thomaston - District Attendance Review Board (DARB): Four years ago, Thomaston implemented its DARB as part of a tiered attendance protocol to address chronic absenteeism and improve student attendance. The DARB’s members – which include at least one administrator, social worker/guidance counselor from each building, nurse and representatives from community agencies – attempt to build positive relationships with and become a partner to students and families who are or are on track to becoming chronically absent or truant. The DARB provides an alternative option that has led to a decrease in chronic absenteeism through improved family engagement and communication with parents/guardians.   
  • Bristol, Enfield and Middletown - College and Career Readiness (CCR): these districts’ practices around CCR are being highlighted for their improvements over the past several years, especially among students from low-income families. These districts are supporting innovative approaches by their educators including:
    • broadening the criteria for recommending students for rigorous courses like Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), or dual enrollment;
    • modifying school schedules to allow for deeper and flexible learning options;
    • providing dedicated career counseling services; and
    • making continuous improvements to their partnerships with colleges and employers.
  • Bristol is articulating more of its courses with the UCONN Early College Experience (ECE) program and offering Career and Technical Education (CTE) pathway courses through Tunxis Community College.
  • Enfield has a strong partnership with Asnuntuck Community College to offer programs in advanced manufacturing. They also collaborate with employers including 3M, Bushnell, VOYA, Real Art Ways, and NBC around job shadowing, skill development, and field trip opportunities.
  • Middletown is significantly increasing access to AP and ECE courses by broadening the criteria for selecting students. Teachers and staff are asked to consider not only academic readiness, but also other factors like grit and perseverance.

These districts’ strategies, as well as those happening in districts across the state, have propelled Connecticut to become the state with the third highest growth among students eligible for free-or-reduced price meals with respect to participation in the College Board’s Advanced Placement (AP) program. AP participation among those students has increased by 64 percent from 3,372 students in 2015 to 5,533 students in 2019.  To support this trend, the CSDE will continue to pay the remainder of fees not covered by the College Board for low-income students to take AP exams; a similar approach is being considered for the IB program as well.
 
A vital component for the success of any district innovation is the commitment of the respective local board of education to provide the supports necessary so all students can achieve to their fullest potential. For more detailed insights into these promising practices, please visit Learn Together, Grow Together CT.

Peter A. Yazbak
Director of Communications
Connecticut State Department of Education
O: 860-713-6528
M: 860-471-3518

About Sustainable CT

Sustainable CT is a voluntary certification program to recognize thriving and resilient Connecticut municipalities. Sustainable CT provides a wide-ranging menu of coordinated, voluntary actions that municipalities can complete to become more sustainable. Municipalities choose Sustainable CT actions, implement them, and earn points toward certification. SustainableCT.org for more.

Starting in September of 2019 Sustainable CT will expand its work to include supporting public schools, nonprofits, community groups and residents through its Community Match Fund. This is an innovative program that provides a flexible funding mechanism that will support sustainability-related projects throughout Connecticut.

We are excited to engage and support students in implementing projects in their communities!

Read more

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt logo
Matthew R. Larson, Ph.D.
Past President, NCTM; Senior Fellow, Math Solution
 
This blog post originally appeared on HMH’s Shaped blog on August 20, 2018.

Many of us, when we think of addressing equitable student outcomes in mathematics education, think of advocating for each and every student to have access to a rigorous and coherent curriculum. And this does remain a significant concern in the U.S.

Research indicates that students from marginalized groups continue to have less access to college preparatory pathways in math than non-marginalized students. Our work to ensure that all students have access to a meaningful math curriculum that supports both their professional and personal aspirations remains a critical component of our equity work. But, if we are truly committed to equitable learning outcomes in mathematics education, we must do more than just provide access.
Below are three other important aspects we must keep in mind in our efforts to better math education.

1. Fostering Positive Math Experiences and Identities
It is not enough to simply get students into the mathematics “pipeline.” We must also attend to how students experience math once they are in the “pipeline” because it is their dissatisfying experiences in the classroom that cause some students to shy away from math as a subject. Simply put, equitable math instruction must provide access and empower students to see themselves as capable learners, users, and doers of mathematics. 

How students see themselves and how they believe others see them as learners of mathematics greatly impacts their success. By implementing research-informed and equitable instructional practices, teachers can significantly enhance the experiences and learning outcomes of students in the math classroom.

Read the full article

This law allows local Boards of Education to set a firm graduation date no earlier than the 180th day of the board-adopted school calendar for that year. This means that should school be canceled due to inclement weather or for other reasons, local Boards are not required to change the graduation date even though seniors will graduate attending less than 180 school days...

For more information please contact:
Dr. Scott V. Nicol
Superintendent of Schools

Press Release

Connecticut Department of Transportation has sponsored Save A life Tour at 80 high schools to be scheduled Oct. 1, 2019, through April 10, 2019. We added new Full Motion VR Impaired & Distracted Simulators. This is fully funded no cost to the school
 
List of schools hosting below.
 
Realistic, and immersive teen driving awareness and educational program focusing on distracted driving.  The program includes the use of advanced interactive driving simulators, banners, videos, and live presentations; handling of all logistics and coordination with regional high schools; conducting Pre and Post event surveys; providing participant take-aways and pledge campaign items, and promotional efforts to include organizing media outreach and interviews.
 
9/25/2019—41484—Metropolitan Learning Center—Bloomfield—7:50 am - 11:50 am
9/26/2019—41485—Walter Fitzgerlad Campus—Fairfield—8:40 am - 1:00 pm
9/27/2019—41477—West Haven HS—West Haven—8:20 am - 1:45 pm
                                               
10/1/2019—41663—Bloomfield HS—Bloomfield—7:30 am - 2:15 pm
10/2/2019—41703—Norwalk HS—Norwalk—7:30 am - 2:00 pm
10/3/2019—41679—Bristol Central HS—Bristol—7:30 am - 2:00 pm
10/4/2019—41478—Seymour HS—Seymour—7:30 am - 2:30 pm
10/7/2019—41584—Hamden HS—Hamden—7:30 am - 2:00 pm
10/8/2019—41704—Mark T Sheehan HS—Wallingford—7:30 am - 1:55 pm
10/9/2019—41705—Wheeler HS—N Stonington—7:45 am - 2:25 pm
10/10/2019—41585—Henry Abbott Tech HS,—Danbury—8:00 am - 2:00 pm
10/11/2019—41479—Torrington HS—Torrington— 7:25 am - 2:05 pm
10/15/2019—41488—Kennedy HS—Waterbury—7:30 am- 2:30 pm
10/16/2019—41637—EC Goodwin Tech HS—New Britain—7:25 am - 2:14 pm
10/17/2019—41489—Waterbury Arts Magnet—Waterbury—7:30 am - 2:30 pm
10/18/2019—41490—Waterbury Career Academy—Waterbury—7:30 am - 2:30 pm
10/21/2019—41491—Wilby HS—Waterbury—7:30 am - 2:30 pm
10/22/2019—41752—Rocky Hill HS—Rocky Hill—7:30 am - 2:30 pm
10/23/2019—41657—Francis T Maloney HS—Meriden—7:30 am - 2:30 pm
10/24/2019—41638—Stamford HS—Stamford—7:25 am - 2:05 pm
10/25/2019—41492—Danbury HS—Danbury—7:30 am - 2:30 pm
10/28/2019—41480—Suffield West HS—West Suffield—7:25 am - 2:10 pm
10/29/2019—41741—North Branford—N Branford —7:30 am - 3:00 pm
10/30/2019—41706—Lyme Old Lyme HS—Lyme—7:30 am - 2:00 pm
                                               
11/1/2019—41622—Newington HS—Newington—7:34 am - 2:20 pm
11/8/2019—41816—Gilbert School—Winsted—8:45 am - 12:00 pm
11/13/2019—41770—Platt Tech HS—Milford—8:00 am - 11:00 am
11/14/2019—41775—Grasso Tech HS—Groton—8:20 am - 2:30 pm
11/15/2019—41487—Crosby HS—Waterbury—7:30 am - 2:30 pm
                                               
2/13/2020—41817—Bassick HS—Bridgeport—7:45 am - 2:30 pm
2/14/2020—41627—CT IB Academy—East Hartford—7:30 am - 12:10 pm
2/20/2020—41742—Williams School—New London—9:30 am - 3:30 pm
                                               
3/17/2020—41771—Wilcox Tech HS—Meriden—8:00 am - 12:00 pm
3/20/2020—41707—Enfield HS—Enfield—8:00 am - 1:30 pm
3/27/2020—41772—Acad of Science & Innovation—New Britain—8:00 am - 11:30 am
                                               
4/8/2020—41818—Greenwich HS—Greenwich—8:30 am - 2:45 pm
4/9/2020—41680—Glastonbury HS—Glastonbury—7:40 am - 12:30 pm

Frank Mitidieri
Senior Scheduling Consultant
The Save A Life Tour
Matrix Entertainment
Business Hours – 8 A.M. – 5 P.M. EST, Monday - Friday
(888) 655-7263
After hours – (317) 450-8865

Flyer

Overview of the Opportunity

A new RFP invites applications for New England communities to develop a collective vision of their graduates, a first step for designing schools with students at the center.

The Barr Foundation seeks to select up to 20 communities across New England to receive funding and technical assistance to build locally-driven portraits of their high school graduates. A portrait of a graduate articulates the community’s collective vision of what all high school students will know and be able to do. In order for all students to reach their potential, high schools must be intentionally designed to hold students to high expectations. Through the development and use of a portrait of a graduate, high schools can embrace a robust definition of student success that ensures that students are fully equipped with core academic knowledge and skills, as well as a range of other competencies that we all need to be successful in college, career, and community...

Barr Foundation Website

The Connecticut State Department of Education (CSDE), Bureau of Special Education (BSE), in partnership with the State Education Resource Center (SERC), announces the launch of an innovative in-district training series targeted for all educators involved in the PPT process. This training, differentiated into three levels, is designed to address the various needs of participants and build district level capacity to ensure compliance and successful outcomes for students with disabilities.  For the 2019-20, there will be a limited number of school districts selected for implementation of this training series.
 
Please take a moment to review the one-page flyer about this training opportunity for school districts:

Flyer

The University of New Haven is proud to offer a series of four graduate courses specifically designed for individuals interested in obtaining certification as a public school business official (SBO). These courses have been developed in consultation with the Connecticut Association of School Business Officials (CASBO) and include instruction in the areas of responsibility as outlined by the Connecticut State Department of Education.

The University will offer the following courses on Saturdays in Fall 2019 and Spring 2020:

Fall 2019:
School Business Administration
School Personnel Administration and Collective Bargaining

Spring 2020:
School Finance I
School Finance II (Including Federal and State Grants)

The Connecticut State Department of Education recognizes the four courses as fulfilling educational requirements for certification in School Business Administration (O85), provided the applicant has met all other certification requirements.

For more information, please contact Dr. Christy Smith, Director of the MPA Program at the University of New Haven: CDSmith@newhaven.edu

CAPSS' logo

We are currently renewing membership for the 2019-2020 calendar year and have had questions from districts regarding eligibility. In addition to public school superintendents, our members include those in our Executive District Leaders' Roundtable. EDLR members are comprised of any central office administrator -- such as assistant superintendent, curriculum director, special education director, assessment coordinator, etc.

For more information on membership, please contact Dawn Cole (860-236-8640 ext. 100) or Dio Markopoulos (860-236-8640 ext. 130).

Dear School Board Member/Superintendent,
     
As many of you know, The Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence has worked closely with CABE and CAPSS to build awareness of social-emotional learning and school leadership best practices. As part of this ongoing effort, we are pleased to invite you to participate in a School Board-Superintendent Survey powered by Yale. This survey asks questions regarding:
     

  • School climate and stress/burnout/mental health
  • Social-emotional learning (SEL) implementation
  • School Board and Superintendent leadership practices

     
All CT school board members/superintendents are invited to participate. This survey is voluntary and should take approximately 10 minutes to complete. Your responses will be kept completely anonymous. We are not collecting personally identifying information. We plan to communicate the results of this survey in summary form through CABE and CAPSS to superintendents and school board members statewide.
     
Please plan to complete the survey without interruption. To access the survey, click or copy and paste this URL into your internet browser:
    
    Superintendent Survey

    School Board Survey
    
We appreciate your help as we work to “Make CT the First Emotionally Intelligent State”. Please feel free to contact Dr. Marc Brackett or Scott Levy with any questions.
     
    With gratitude,


    Dr. Marc A. Brackett
    Director, The Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence
    
    Scott R. Levy
    Executive Director, The Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence
    
 

Partnering to Prevent School Violence is an FBI training event being held on July 16, 2019. 9:00 am -12 noon.  This training event is FREE.

The topics listed below will be taught by FBI Special Agents.

  • Behavioral Indicators of Violent Actors
  • Countering Violent Extremism in Schools
  • Crisis Management
  •  Viewing of the FBI Video: Echoes of Columbine

The following people would benefit from the training:

  • High School Superintendents, Principals, and Administrators
  • Threat Assessment Team Members for High Schools, Colleges and Universities
  • School Resource Officers - State and Local
  • College and University Campus Security / Law Enforcement
  •  High School Campus Security / Law Enforcement

This event will be very similar to the Countering Violent Extremism training events held last summer and on April 30th of this year at Yale West Campus.  If you attended one of those trainings, there is no need to attend again.
 
This training will be held at the Connecticut Police Academy auditorium, 285 Preston Ave, Meriden, CT 06450.

Register

CAPSS is committed to ongoing efforts to share ideas regarding current effective education practices in Connecticut and around the world with the membership. The Innovation Committee will offer a regular mini-column highlighting links to interesting articles and reviews, as well as podcasts related to expansive concepts of innovation in our work.

Although it has become cliché to proclaim the accelerating pace of change will transform every aspect of human existence –it doesn’t mean it is not true.

As leaders in our field, we are so often bogged down in negotiations, problem resolution and politics of all sorts that we often have little time to explore. Innovation Wave will offer thought-provoking links to ideas and practices both in education and from outside.

Innovation Wave will be linked to our website, but will also be pushed out to you via this small column in our Leader's Report.

Please send me news of activities in your district that you would be open to having colleagues visit. An aspect of our redesigning of the education experiences of our students is to redesign the partnerships among our group.

Check out these links:

NOVA: The Design Process: From Idea to Solution | PBS Learning Media

Fast Company

Stanford Innovation Lab with Tina Seelig | Apple Podcasts

There are two key underpinnings to Innovation Wave.

1.    No one is the expert on all things ‘innovative’.
2.    We need to share our successes, our failures to launch, and our works in progress.

We can do this! Other states are committed to adapting public education to the transformations underway. We cannot afford to be the ‘land of steady habits’.

The leadership network of CAPSS can be leaders of innovation.

CONTACT

Chris Clouet
Innovation Committee Chair

 

Dear Fellow Superintendents, 

I continue to serve on the Water Safety and Awareness Legislative Task Force which is sponsored by the Connecticut Commission on Women, Children, and Seniors (CWCS).  The purpose of this communication is to bring annual awareness to Superintendents on the seriousness of child drownings and to provide information and resources for Superintendents to disseminate.   

Please kindly forward this information (with attached links) to your School Principals, Curriculum Directors, Town Recreation Departments, Special Education Directors, Wellness Committees, Physical Education Teachers, Parents (through Principal/School Newsletters) and anyone else you deem appropriate in your district/town.  

CHALLENGE:  Approximately 800 children die yearly from unintentional drowning in the United States. Sixty-two children from birth to age 19 drowned in Connecticut from 2004-2014.  All children are susceptible to drownings, but a disproportionately higher number of minority children (2/3 of children who drown are African American or Hispanic) and children on the autism spectrum (90% of autistic child deaths are due to drowning) are represented in those numbers. Water safety awareness instruction could reduce those rates. 

SOLUTIONS:  Provide water safety information to adults and students during the month of May (National Water Safety Month).   The task force kindly requests that Superintendents forward this email and resources below to appropriate school and town leaders in hopes that the short video link (#1 below) could be used in at least a portion of one class session for all students and could also be included in the Principal’s newsletter for parents to view.

Lastly, if your district has curriculum written in this area and has experienced a successful way to deliver this important information, please feel free to pass this on to me.  I will share it with the task force.

I thank you for your attention to this critical area for our students. 

Sincerely yours, 

Robert 'Bob' Gilbert
Superintendent of Schools
Woodbridge School District
Woodbridge, CT 06525
203-387-6631

RESOURCES

CT Children's Hospital Injury Prevention Center (video)

Main link to the Pool Safely national public education campaign

Pool Safely also has videos, other general resources, and free print materials that can be ordered for events. 

CWCS website for more information on the activities of the Connecticut Commission on Women, Children and Seniors (CWCS)

I wanted to reach out to you personally to share what looks like an exceptional opportunity. It’s a   one-of-a kind summit for women superintendents July 21–24 in Austin, TX. It's called Educator Power Trip: A Well-Being and Leadership Summit for Women Superintendents. The entire venue, Lake Austin Spa Resort, has been secured for this event

You may already have been sent an invitation via email, but we all know how things get lost in the deluge of incoming mail, blocked by a web filter, or fall into spam.
 
The event, for just 30 attendees, is organized by an advisory board of women leaders in education and stakeholders in national education organizations.
 
We can all use a little work-life balance, and this summit will be a unique way for women district leaders to explore and practice wellness as an integral part of their personal effectiveness in driving change.
 
Take a look at the website below. You’ll find complete details as well as a convenient way to register.

Information/Registration

Please join us for  our final session of the 2018 – 2019 Women in the District Office series on May 9, 2019. Our session, Resiliency and the Sisterhood, will identify the resources and privileges we have that help us to thrive in our roles as leaders. Further, we can explore how to work together and share those resources in support of other women in our professional lives. Let’s challenge ourselves and each other to consider how we can overcome barriers that may prevent us from developing a shared sisterhood with other women in educational leadership who are different from us (race, ethnicity, sexual identity, class, etc.).
 
The session will be held at Mercy by the Sea (167 Neck Road Madison, CT 06443) . Coffee and continental breakfast will be served at 8:30 am with the formal program from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm. Please use the following link to register for the session:

Registration

“A ball of crazy!” That’s how Aleigha Henderson-Rosser describes the technical issues around access to digital learning resources when she joined Atlanta Public Schools (APS) in 2010 as Executive Director of Instructional Technology. More than 53,000 students and 6,000 teachers didn’t have standardized login details. Precious instruction time was wasted dealing with forgotten passwords and usernames. And with no central place to access digital resources, teachers and students were in the dark about which tools were even available. It may have been the thick of the digital learning revolution in the U.S., but students in Atlanta Public Schools were not reaping the benefits.

Read the complete article on EdSurge

ClassLink.com

A District Administration Web Seminar

Wednesday, April 24, 2019  •  2:00 pm ET

As school districts increasingly deploy digital learning tools and resources, complications and problems arise, such as password fatigue and lost instructional time due to troubleshooting and security issues.

Attend this web seminar with the CTOs of Franklin Pierce Schools in Tacoma, Washington and La Cañada Unified School District in California, and learn how establishing a robust single sign-on, analytics, and rostering platform can result in a more secure and efficient learning environment.

Topics will include:

  • Leveraging single sign-on to organize and manage instructional resources
  • Enhancing access management and authenticating user identities
  • Verifying and tracking usage of digital learning tools and resources
  • Reducing IT costs and minimizing the need for technical support

Sponsored by ClassLink

Register
 

Our national organization, AASA, The School Superintendents Association, just launched its decennial superintendent pipeline study, an effort to detail the demographics, trends, and experiences of the nation’s public school superintendents. You should have received an invitation to the survey from them. In support of this important research and in case you did NOT receive the invitation to the survey, here is the link.

We encourage you to take the time to complete the survey. You can direct any questions to AASA policy analyst Chris Rogers.

TEACHER LEADERS AS ENABLERS OF CREATIVITY, COLLABORATION, AND INNOVATION IN THEIR CLASSROOMS AND BEYOND

Three Outstanding Keynotes—Andy Hargreaves (professional collaboration), Peter Gamwell (back by demand on creativity), and Marc Brackett (social/emotional learning).

Twenty-two (22) separate Breakout Sessions lead by Connecticut’s Teacher Leaders on many topics.

Early-bird registration extended to April 29, 2019.

Monday, May 20, 2019
8am - 4pm
Central Connecticut State University
Alumni Hall Student Center

Sponsored by CCSU in partnership with CEA, AFT-CT and Duke TeachHouse

More information

Registration

Research indicates that trauma can have a direct, immediate impact on students’ academic performance. CT has opportunities for schools and districts interested in assistance with the delivery of evidence-based treatment for students exposed to trauma. Gleaned from a large body of research pointing to the positive impact of trauma-informed educational settings, schools can embark on a whole-school paradigm shift to recognize, understand, and address the needs of students that have been exposed to trauma and chronic stress. Schools and school-based health centers can learn how to deliver evidence-based treatment for children exposed to trauma. Moreover, these opportunities will positively impact school culture and have the potential to change the trajectory of vulnerable students.
 
Through funding from the Department of Children and Families, the Child Health and Development Institute (CHDI) and Dr. Sharon Hoover (CBITS Developer) is offering opportunities to implement Cognitive Behavioral Intervention for Trauma in Schools (CBITS) and Bounce Back (a version of CBITS for elementary aged children in grades K through 5).  New teams will join an existing statewide network of 23 CBITS/BB provider teams, which together have served over 1,250 children with excellent outcomes. All training, ongoing consultation, and quality assurance is provided at no cost, and participating providers/schools are eligible to receive performance-based sustainability funding. 
 
I have attached a brochure with additional information regarding CBITS and Bounce Back. You can also contact me, Dr. Diana Perry, Project Coordinator for the CBITS Initiative. I would be happy to answer any questions or furnish a CBITS/Bounce Back Welcome Packet and Application. All prospective teams are offered pre-application consultation, as we believe that implementation support needs to be available every step of the way, and not just once a partnership is formed.    
 
Additionally, you can check out the attached brochure or use the following links to learn more about the Cognitive Behavioral Intervention for Trauma in Schools and Bounce Back interventions:

CBITS & Bounce Back - Helping Children Through Schools

Bounce Back Program Overview

CONTACT
Diana L. Perry, PsyD
Project Coordinator
Child Health & Development Institute (CHDI)
270 Farmington Avenue, Suite 360
Farmington CT 06032
(p) 860.679.3327
(f) 860.679.0195
dperry@uchc.edu
www.chdi.edu

Brochure

Please join us on Thursday, May 16th from 10:00am to 12:00pm at CAPSS for the Retirement Workshop.
 
Bob Sudol will discuss the following topics:

  • Qualifying for Retirement
  • Retirement Plan Options
  • Purchasing Service
  • Social Security Post Retirement
  • Employment Filing for Retirement
  • Legislative Update/Changes
  • Opportunity for Q&A

REGISTER

Based on the work of HundrED, the CAPSS Innovation Committee invites every Connecticut school district to share their PK-12 innovative educational idea/practice; feel free to submit more than one! The goal is to help improve Connecticut education by contributing to a platform to share innovative school practices.

Thank you to the many districts who have already submitted their ideas, shown here.

Make sure your district is represented by uploading your innovative ideas!

Form for submittals

More information

Oak Hill School logo

Oak Hill School is a private, state approved, special education school serving students ages 3-21. Programming in our classrooms focuses on teaching academic, social and daily living skills with an ultimate goal of making our students more independent in life. Our mission is to empower students to learn through meaningful, functional, and innovative educational experiences. Our classrooms are located within community settings, including public school, to allow for maximum integration opportunities based on the age and needs of the students. Oak Hill, our parent organization, provides a full range of services to individuals with disabilities.

www.oakhillct.org

Contact:
Ana Wittig
Chief Administrator

Hello. This message is from the School Safety Program of the Connecticut Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

The State of Connecticut has received a grant from the U.S. Department of Justice called the STOP Violence Grant. The purpose of this grant is to bring proven violence reduction training to schools in Connecticut at no charge. We have partnered with Sandy Hook Promise to bring the training to the Connecticut schools. We are reaching out to you now to ask if you would like this training brought to your school.

I have attached flyers to better explain the training programs, but please feel free to contact me with any questions. The “Signs of Suicide” training will be delivered to school staff members, deemed appropriate by you, in a regional delivery. The “Say Hello” and “Say Something” trainings are for grades 6-12 and are delivered in an assembly type setting about 45 minutes to one hour in length. I will be providing the list of interested schools to Sandy Hook Promise so they can work with you on scheduling the trainings.

Sandy Hook Promise would like to start contacting schools and scheduling trainings soon to determine trainers required for CT in the next school year. For most schools, the trainings will begin in the fall 2019 and continue throughout the school year.

Please contact me ASAP if you want this training for your school and who will be the main contact person (include name, title, phone number and email address).

Thank you,

Bill Turley

Signs of Suicide

Say Something - Anonymous Reporting Brochure

Start with Hello - In-Person Training

Say Something - In-Person Training

ClassLink - Single Sign-On and Rostering

Thursday, March 28, 1:00 pm ET

See how single sign-on and class rostering has been transformed from a thankless job into a catalyst for meaningful use of digital learning resources.

Join this webinar to hear directly from Dwight Bard, Director of Technology at Greencastle-Antrim School District and Kristen Landis, PhD, Director of Technology at North Penn School District as they share:

  • Why school districts are moving away from in-house and/or inflexible systems to a customizable single sign-on option
  • How this change creates a fast, easy, and sustainable win for the CIO while meeting the needs of instruction along the way
  • Why factors such as security, flexibility, and expanding resource libraries are driving districts towards next-gen platforms
  • How individualized access is leading to organizational improvements in utilization
  • How analytics as a function of single sign-on and rostering is informing strategic level decisions

This webinar cites the experiences two district leaders have had in scaling up technologies that drive access. As a result, presenters will give a first-hand account of what it’s like to evaluate, implement, and manage a robust single sign-on, class-rostering, and analytics platform.

Register to attend this webinar today!

TEACHER LEADERS AS ENABLERS OF CREATIVITY, COLLABORATION, AND INNOVATION IN THEIR CLASSROOMS AND BEYOND

Three Outstanding Keynotes—Andy Hargreaves (professional collaboration), Peter Gamwell (back by demand on creativity), and Marc Brackett (social/emotional learning).

Twenty-two (22) separate Breakout Sessions lead by Connecticut’s Teacher Leaders on many topics.

Early-bird registration ends on April 15, 2019.

Monday, May 20, 2019
8am - 4pm
Central Connecticut State University
Alumni Hall Student Center

Sponsored by CCSU in partnership with CEA, AFT-CT and Duke TeachHouse

More information/registration

Light bulbs

Based on the work of HundrED, the CAPSS Innovation Committee invites every Connecticut school district to share their PK-12 innovative educational idea/practice; feel free to submit more than one! The goal is to help improve Connecticut education by contributing to a platform to share innovative school practices.

Thank you to the many districts who have already submitted their ideas, shown here.

Make sure your district is represented by uploading your innovative ideas!

Form for submittals

More information

Fairfield University logo

Candidates enrolled in Fairfield University’s online Dyslexia Interventionist Certificate program with Wilson Reading System® Level I certification acquire a sophisticated working knowledge of the sound-symbol system of English (phonology) and its structure (morphology), and learn how to implement the Wilson Reading System® for the purpose of remediating the word level (accuracy and fluency) reading and spelling deficits of students in Grades 3-12, including students diagnosed with language-based learning disabilities and dyslexia.

View/download for complete information

As New England's largest investor-owned utility, Aquarion has a special appreciation for the accomplishments of all of our state's environmental volunteers. Accordingly, we have designated one of the award categories to honor a student in grades 9-12 who has worked to protect or restore Connecticut's natural resources.

The student who wins the Aquarion Environmental Champion Award will receive statewide recognition and take home a $1,000 award. Teachers, administrators and clubs can also take part in the program and, if selected as an Environmental Champion, would win statewide honors and a $2,500 grant given in their name to a non-profit environmental organization of their choice.

The awards will be presented at a special celebration to be held on June 1, 2019 at Connecticut's Beardsley Zoo. U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal and other dignitaries will be in attendance to present the awards.

The deadline for nominations is May 1, 2019.

More information

Civility Lost book cover

Civility is a major issue in today's society. School leaders are confronted with this issue in leading and managing schools. Education has a significant role in creating and maintaining a more civil society upon which our nation depends in its governance and operation.
 
George Goen's new book, Civility Lost: The Media, Politics, and Education, speaks to the issue of civility so that a positive and constructive dialogue can take place. Education and leadership are important in establishing a society in which civil discourse on different issues can take place. A democracy will always have conflicting ideas and debate. The question is: how can we maintain our civility and find common ground and solutions?

Book Summary

Website/purchase
 

Candidates enrolled in Fairfield University’s online Dyslexia Interventionist Certificate program with Wilson Reading System® Level I certification acquire a sophisticated working knowledge of the sound-symbol system of English (phonology) and its structure (morphology), and learn how to implement the Wilson Reading System® for the purpose of remediating the word level (accuracy and fluency) reading and spelling deficits of students in Grades 3-12, including students diagnosed with language-based learning disabilities and dyslexia.

View/download for complete information

Leading for Equity event page banner graphic

Through the incredible generosity of The New England School Development Council, we're pleased to invite you to the Leading for Equity Institute for superintendents and their district teams on March 19, 2019 from 8:00 am to 3:00 pm. This session is open to all superintendents, including those who could not attend the fall institute. The morning session will be for superintendents and their district teams. Lunch and the afternoon session will be for superintendents only.

More information

REGISTER

Sponsored by:

Right At School logo
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February 6, 2019


(HARTFORD, CT) – State Treasurer Shawn T. Wooden has launched the 2019 Dream Big! college-savings competition that will award up to $1,000 each to 48 students in grades K-8.

“Encouraging young Connecticut students to start thinking about and planning for college as early as possible is crucial to their future success,” said Wooden, who is Trustee of the Connecticut Higher Education Trust (CHET) - sponsor of the annual Dream Big! Competition. “And as the owner of CHET accounts for my two sons, I can’t think of a better way to get started than by taking part in this fun and thought-provoking competition.”

Four students will be awarded a grand prize of $1,000, while the others will be awarded $500. A total of $26,000 will be awarded statewide to 48 students in the form of a contribution to a new or existing CHET account.

The competition asks students to use a creative outlet, in the form of a drawing or essay, to answer the question: “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Kindergarten through third grade students are asked to share artwork depicting what they want to do after they go to college.

Fourth through eighth grade students are asked to answer in a 250-word essay how they will change the world after college.

Schools are also eligible for a prize. Eight schools - one per county - will be selected to receive up to $500 in cash for entries submitted on behalf of their students. To be eligible to win, the school must submit a minimum of 50 entries on behalf of entrants and have the highest number of entries in their county. School winners in the past have used the money to purchase library books, classroom materials and other items to enrich their students' academic experience.

Entries are judged based on theme, originality and creativity. Drawings will also be evaluated based on artistic design and attractiveness, while essays are also judged on overall grammar, spelling and punctuation. Printable entry forms, official rules and additional details can be found at www.CHETDreamBig.com. No purchase is necessary to enter or win.

The competition began on Friday, February 1, and entry deadline is Friday, March 29.

Download press release for complete information

ambyese logo

Does your student excel in science and/or possess an above average aptitude in math?

The AMBYESE program is in the process of launching a one of a kind Scientific Lab Symposium: 

When: Saturday, April 27, 2019

Where: UCONN-Stamford

Time: 10 AM – 3 PM

Objective of the symposium: To familiarize college-bound students (who possess above average aptitudes in science and mathematics) of the emerging careers in natural/life science available to them within the public and private sectors by electing to pursue an undergraduate degree in one of the following majors:

Astronomy, Biological Sciences, Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Earth and Marine Science, Mathematics, Metallurgy, Environmental Science, Physics and Geography

Under the team leadership of Praxair's John Sirman, Ph.D., who was awarded his Ph.D. degree in Electronic Ceramic Materials, the symposium will present a series of cryo-demonstrations and other intriguing science displays in the auditorium of UCONN Stamford. Participating students will gain hands-on experience in the process and have the opportunity to network with scientists and science teachers/professionals through a panel discussion and informal discussions.

Download for complete information.

Ambyese.org

CASBO logo

CASBO is dedicated to acknowledging exemplary business managers and their service to the betterment of education for the students of Connecticut.  CASBO has three recognition awards—Connecticut Celebrated School Business Official Award, Rising Star Award and Innovative Practices Award.  Annually, nominations are sought in February through March.  The Selection Committee is comprised of CASBO members, a CABE representative, and a CAPSS representative. 

The Connecticut Celebrated School Business Official and Rising Star Awards were created to acknowledge the value and contributions of outstanding school business officials. Nominees are evaluated based upon their contributions to their profession, regardless of the size of their districts and their job titles. These awards are meant to honor an individual both for current accomplishments and sustained contributions.   The Rising Star Award is reserved for those who have had their certification for 10 or less years.

The purpose of the School Business and Operations Innovative Practices Recognition is to identify effective and innovative uses of public resources in support of education, and to disseminate the ideas or practices for the benefit of public schools in Connecticut.

Each award winner receives a beautiful award presented at the President’s Dinner, complimentary Institute registration and tickets to the President’s Dinner.  The call for award nominations will be accepted until March 29, 2019 via the CASBO website.

Armed School Security Training Pursuant to PA 13-188

The Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection’s, Police Officer Standards and Training Council, Field Services Training Division, is presenting the training of armed school security personnel as required by Public Act 13-188.

The training session will be a ONE day, 6 contact hour session and has been scheduled on Wednesday, August 7, 2019 and for NEW HIRES in addition to day one would have to attend Thursday, August 8, 2019 at the Connecticut Police Academy in Meriden, CT from 8:30AM-4:00 PM.

This seminar is required under Public Act 13-188.  This Act requires that armed security personnel in a public school, other than a sworn member of an organized local police department, be a qualified, retired in good standing, law enforcement officer certified by the Police Officer Standards and Training Council, or the Division of State Police within the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection.  Such personnel will receive annual training.

Complete information and registration

abstract image of hand holding lights

Based on the work of HundrED, the CAPSS Innovation Committee invites every Connecticut school district to share one PK-12 innovative educational idea/practice. The goal is to help improve Connecticut education by establishing a platform to share innovative school practices. Thank you to the many districts who have already submitted their ideas. Make sure your district is represented by uploading your innovative idea!

More information/link to form

2019 Prirority Recommendations page banner

The Connecticut Association of Public School Superintendents (CAPSS) advances its priorities for the 2019 legislative session in accordance with our mission to lead the continuous improvement of public education for all students by advocating public policy for children and by developing and supporting executive school leaders.

Priority recommendations include:

  • Education Funding
  • School/Student Safety and Well-Being
  • Efforts to Promote Regionalism
  • Mandates

View/download the complete report.

Kids Speak Junior post banner

The State of Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities, The Office of the Attorney General, The University of Connecticut, The New Haven, CT Chapter of Links, Inc., the Tau Xi Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Girlfriends, Inc., Chums, Inc. and additional organizations are co-sponsoring CT Kids Speak Jr. Connecticut Kids Speak Jr.  is the kickoff to the Kids Court Jr. Essay Competition.  The Kids Court Jr. Competition provides elementary school students who are in 3-5 grade an opportunity to research a specific civil or human rights issue and advocate a position, initially in an essay and picture and then orally before a panel of judges.
 
Kids Speak Jr.  is a half-day program of interactive exercises, peer debate, improvisations, an interactive panel discussion and peer dialogue aimed at raising student’s consciousness about civil and human rights issues and reducing bullying and prejudice.  Students from across the State of Connecticut are invited to participate in this groundbreaking event.  In this inaugural year there are two topics for Kids Speak Jr.  and the Kids Court Jr.  Essay Competition.  The Kids Speak will be held on Tuesday, March 26, 2019 from 9:00 a.m.-1:30 p.m.  at the state Armory in Hartford, Connecticut.  The event will be held at the University of Connecticut School of Law in Hartford.  A morning snack and lunch will be served at no cost to participants.  Please see the attached flyer for more information.  
 
Kids Speak Jr. is patterned after a twenty-five year program (Kids Speak) that has had participation from over 20,000 students state and tri-state.  Tens of Thousands of students have participated in Kids Speak and Kids Court over the years and the program has been very favorably received by educators and administrators.  Past Speakers have included Governor Dannel P. Malloy, State Senators, a Supreme Court Justice, State Representatives, Representatives from the Mayor’s Office In Hartford, The Commissioner of Education and many more dignitaries.  We hope that you will join us.  ADMISSION IS FREE AND LUNCH WILL BE SERVED FREE of CHARGE.  SPACES ARE LIMITED.  There are a limited number of transportation scholarships available.
 
Media will be present this year.  Thus, please register early before the spots are taken. The deadline for registering is March 7, 2019.  Please register for Kids Speak Jr. at Cheryl.Sharp@ct.gov 
 
Please have your students begin working on their essays now.  The topics for this year’s Competition are in the attached flyer.  The final Competition will be held at the end of April.    We hope to see you and your students.
  
Attorney Cheryl A. Sharp, Deputy Director
CT Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities
450 Columbus Blvd Ste 2
Hartford CT 06103
 
Tel:   (860) 541-3450
Fax:  (860) 246-5265
Web:  www.ct.gov/chro

View/download our brochure.
 

2019 Prirority Recommendations page banner

The Connecticut Association of Public School Superintendents (CAPSS) advances its priorities for the 2019 legislative session in accordance with our mission to lead the continuous improvement of public education for all students by advocating public policy for children and by developing and supporting executive school leaders.

Priority recommendations include:

  • Education Funding
  • School/Student Safety and Well-Being
  • Efforts to Promote Regionalism
  • Mandates

View/download the complete report.

Teacher reading to students in classroom

This is the first doctoral program the Farrington College of Education offers, and it's the first of its kind in the state. The degree is targeted to working and licensed educational leaders such as principals, superintendents, curriculum leaders and special education directors and is also seeking candidates who have informal leadership roles such as department chairs and instructional coaches. The program will prepare doctoral candidates to lead school communities from a whole-child perspective. It will be will be directed by David G. Title, clinical assistant professor, former superintendent of schools of the Bloomfield and Fairfield school systems and the 2010 Superintendent of the Year in Connecticut. The program will include classes, doctoral seminars and a capstone dissertation, to be completed in three years.

Read the complete article.

ClassLink Webinar 2-6-19 graphic

New England Districts Present: Eliminating Barriers to Access in K-12, Lessons learned about managing digital resources with single sign-on, analytics, rostering, and account provisioning tools.

Wednesday, February 6, 1:00 pm ET

As schools continue to increase the amount of digital learning tools and resources available within the district, new complications and barriers arise for students and administrators:

  • How do we effectively manage and organize all of these resources?
  • Are we losing valuable instructional time in the classroom due to troubleshooting accessibility and security issues?
  • Are students and teachers even using these products? Which ones are being utilized the most? Which ones aren’t?
  • How can automated account provisioning save time and money?

Catherine Orgovan, Enterprise Software Systems Manager at Norwalk Public Schools (CT) and Michael Skott, Technology Director, at Middletown City School District (CT) will share how leveraging single sign-on and analytics platforms help remove barriers to access and how you can do it too.

Register to attend this webinar today!

Here is another exciting way for districts to participate in the March 8 Igniting Innovation conference.  Based on the work of HundrED, the CAPSS Innovation Committee is pleased to invite every Connecticut school district to share one PK-12 innovative educational idea/practice. The goal is to help improve Connecticut education by establishing a platform to share innovative school practices. We hope that every district will participate!

More information

The CAPSS' Innovation Committee is an evolving network of superintendents (Bethel, Bloomfield, Bolton, Branford, CREC, CCSU Teacher Leader Fellowship Program, Farmington, Granby, Guilford, Meriden, Shelton, South Windsor, Stamford, Wallingford, Windham and Woodbridge) focused on preparing our students for the challenges of the mid-to-late 21st Century in the context of innovation.

The committee will post ideas and share resources on the CAPSS website, will collaborate with each other, host the Igniting Innovation Conference and more.

Follow all the Committee's work here

2019 Igniting Innovation graphic

Connecticut Schools Most Innovative Practices, Building Our Future Together

March 8, 2019 
8:30am - 12:30pm

University of Bridgeport
84 Iranistan Avenue
Bridgeport, CT 

The keynote speaker is Jon Landis, a thought leader from Apple.

Additional speakers will include:

Berj Akian, CEO of ClassLink.

Dr. Ronald Beghetto, an internationally recognized expert on creative thought and action in education.  He serves as Professor of Educational Psychology and Director of Innovation House at the University of Connecticut.

Register Now

To Connecticut 5th Grade Educators:

The Connecticut State Police Clearinghouse for Information on Missing Children & Missing Endangered Adults and U.S. Department of Justice invites all Connecticut 5th graders to participate in the 2019 National Missing Children’s Day Poster Contest.

The National Missing Children’s Day Poster Contest is a nationwide contest designed to promote awareness among teachers, parents/guardians and children and engage them in discussions about safety. May 25 is National Missing Children's Day, dedicated to encouraging parents, guardians, caregivers, and others to ensure that child safety is a priority.

The poster contest is open to 5th graders at all schools (including home schools), school districts, local governing bodies, PTAs, Boys & Girls Clubs, or other organizations with 5th graders.  

The state winner will receive a national award certificate from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and his or her poster will be selected to go to the national judging competition. The national winner, his/her teacher and parents/guardians, and the state manager will be invited to Washington, D.C., to participate in the U.S. DOJ‛s National Missing Children‛s Day ceremony on May 22, 2019.

Missing Children’s Day Packet information can be found at:

https://ncjtc-static.fvtc.edu/resources/RS00005796.pdf

February 22, 2019, is the strict deadline for submissions to the CT State Police!

Submissions must be complete with poster, poster contest application (pages 6-7 of packet) and parent/guardian release consent form (page 8 of packet).

Each participating location will need to complete an internal selection process and mail the Top Five (5) posters per location/school with required documents to:  

Connecticut State Police
Public Information Office
1111 Country Club Road
Middletown CT 06457

If you have any questions, email Cathy Hinsch

More information

Ledyard Public Schools logo

Right At School is proud to announce the launch of before and afterschool programming at Ledyard School District in Ledyard, CT. Led by a mission to inspire a love of learning, support schools and give parents peace of mind, Right At School provides safe, engaging, and meaningful in-school and extracurricular programs that enrich the lives of students and enable schools to focus on their academic mission.

Launching in January 2019, Right At School will be partnering with Ledyard School District to offer before and afterschool enrichment programs to service the Ledyard community for K-8 students.   “We are excited about providing this additional service to support our Ledyard families”, says Jay Hartling, Superintendent of Ledyard School District. “We want to make sure that our working families have quality, affordable, and flexible afterschool care available when they need it.”

Right At School’s programs provide students with enrichment activities as well as opportunities to dive into student-led projects, develop peer leadership skills, finish homework, get outside for fitness, and explore personal interests.

For more information on Right At School, visit www.rightatschool.com.

For more information on Ledyard School District, visit www.ledyard.net.

Right At School logo
CT School Breakfast Summit graphic

Thursday, January 10, 2019   •   The Aqua Turf Club, Plantsville, Connecticut

Are you READY to operate a federally compliant School Breakfast Program? Get your schools SET to deliver breakfast to your students, and take action to GROW breakfast participation in your schools! The 2019 CT School Breakfast Summit explores various breakfast tools, resources, and support while providing you with unbeatable peer networking opportunities to share breakfast wisdom and foster continued excellence and academic achievement for Connecticut’s students!

Download the flyer for more information/registration

ccsu building

SAVE THE DATE!

Thursday, March 7, 2019 - 3:30 p.m.  •  Founders Hall Meeting Room in Davidson Hall

Learn about Central Connecticut State University’s Connecticut Superintendent Certificate Program

A panel of highly regarded superintendents will share insights about the rewards and challenges of the superintendency, and share their experiences serving as a superintendent mentor in CCSU’s 093 program.

Download the flyer for more information/registration

If anyone was under the impression that Girl Scouting had disappeared from the landscape or was only about little girls selling cookies by the Stop and Shop, take another look at Girl Scouting today. As we think about some of the challenges that all girls face today around gender equity, self-esteem, embracing STEM studies, and becoming strong, self-determined young women, Girl Scouting has evolved to address those relevant issues bringing research-driven, evidence-based programming that complements a girl’s academic experience, but with an important single-gender lens.

Read more

The Director of Technology for Fairfield Public Schools (CT) shared the benefits of managing digital resources with ClassLink: “By being able to present resources in a simple, easy format and making access as simple as a single click, teachers not only save time in the classroom, they have great confidence in using the resources available to them. And students are able to engage with technology in a way never before seen in the district. The transition has been comprehensive and transformative for our district.”

Find out more

Every December, public school students, parents, teachers and administrators face the difficult task of acknowledging the various religious and secular holiday traditions celebrated during that time of year. Participants will learn strategies to promote greater understanding and respect among students of different traditions by taking care to adhere to the requirements of the First Amendment. We will not confine the discussion to December; we will discuss the challenges and opportunities of increasingly diverse student bodies and what every principal should know. Participants can learn best practices, legal requirements and hear from an interfaith panel on how to create a welcoming school environment around holiday time.

This no cost workshop is sponsored by CAS, CABE and CAPSS.

Registration questions, please contact Noreen Liberopoulos at nliberopoulos@casciac.org.

Date: November 2, 2018
Time: 8:00 am - 11:30 am
Site: Connecticut Association of Schools, 30 Realty Drive, Cheshire, CT 06410 - Conference Room C2, Lower Level
Registration Deadline: October 30, 2018
Cost: No Charge

View/Download the Flyer

Online Registration

casia_esa logo

CASIA is pleased to offer the 23rd ANNUAL POLICE / FIRE SCHOLARSHIP AWARDS to two deserving and qualified high school seniors graduating in June 2019. Connecticut’s first prize will be $1000 and the second prize $500. CASIA’s first place winner will be automatically entered in to the Electronic Security Association (ESA) Youth Scholarship Program where the prizes are $7,500 (1st) and $2,500 (2nd).

Read the flyer

Online application

Discovering Amistad logo

The Amistad replica, built in Mystic, Connecticut and launched in 2000 provides an historic backdrop for three in-class lessons for students in Grades 3 – 12 which include the journey of the Mende people, their struggle for freedom and how this journey of freedom resonates in today’s world.

Our educators provide our proprietary program on-site in your classrooms along with an interactive sail aboard the Amistad.

Read more in our flyer

Connecticut's Kid Governor 2018-2019 logo

Fifth-grade teachers are invited to register their classes to participate in Connecticut's Kid Governor®, an award-winning statewide civics program created by the Connecticut Democracy Center. This free, in-class civics program teaches 5th-grade students about state government, voting and elections, and civic engagement through the annual election of a Kid Governor. The program takes place right from the comfort of the classroom and registered teachers receive Toolkits of lesson plans that guide them through the entire program. Schools can participate by nominating one student candidate in the election, voting in the election, or both.

Kid Governor is an authentic, immersive experience that teaches students about the democratic process by giving them a voice in a real election. Are schools in your district registered to participate yet? Check our participation map HERE to find out!

To learn more and to register your class, please visit CT.KidGovernor.org or email Brian.Cofrancesco@kidgovernor.org.
 

ClassLink logo

ClassLink Joins CAPSS as Elite Busines Partner
ClassLink empowers your students and teachers with instant access to their learning resources. ClassLink® OneClick® includes a library of over 6,000 single sign-on apps and instant links to file folders at school and on Google, Office 365, and Dropbox cloud drives. ClassLink Analytics gives decision makers the usage data they need. ClassLink Roster Server easily and securely delivers class rosters to any publisher using open technology standards. ClassLink OneSync automates account provisioning and provides bidirectional account syncing. Accessible from any computer, tablet or smartphone, ClassLink is ideal for 1to1 and Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) initiatives.

www.classlink.com

Contact:
Gregg Calvaruso
Director of Marketing


Logo for Shipman & Goodwin LLP, Counselors at Law

Shipman & Goodwin LLP Joins CAPSS as Premier Business Partner
Shipman & Goodwin LLP has more than 170 attorneys with five offices in Connecticut, an office in New York and Washington, D.C. The firm is recognized nationally for the depth and breadth of our education practice. Our school law attorneys represent over 125 public school districts and educational entities. Our online resource, www.ctschoollaw.com is dedicated to presenting the latest developments in school law.

www.shipmangoodwin.com

Contact:
Thomas B. Mooney, Esq.
Partner


Spur logo

CAPPS Welcomes SPUR as a Basic Business Partner
Spur is a staffing company for schools. We use our very own workforce management software to improve support and substitute staffing services and to save districts a significant amount on staffing costs. We are not only focused on providing a great experience for schools, but also on investing more into our workers in the form of better employee engagement, training, and benefits so they can have more control over their work life.

www.spurjobs.com

Contact:
Laura Slayton
Customer Development Rep

UPCOMING EVENTS

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