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PROPERTY TAX FREEZE LEGISLATION PASSES HOUSE Both chambers of the Illinois General Assembly have adjourned for 2017, a year that saw a full year budget passed, new revenues, and a school funding formula overhaul. The House of Representatives and the Senate are scheduled to convene the 2018 spring veto session in late January.  In previous Fall Veto Sessions, Governor Bruce Rauner was very successful in sustaining a vast majority of his vetoes. However, things were different this year as a number of vetoes were overridden by the General Assembly. The growing number of votes against the Governor started with the budget and revenue package (SB 6 and SB 9) ...
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VETO SESSION RESUMES THIS WEEK - ACTION NEEDED ON PROPERTY TAX FREEZE The Illinois General Assembly returns to the Capitol this week for the second week of the Veto Session. This will likely complete the session action for the year. Last week the House Revenue and Finance Committee approved the latest version of a property tax freeze. SB 851, sponsored by Representative Michelle Mussman (D-Schaumburg) in the House, was amended with the freeze language on an 8-1 Committee vote. Details of the bill can be found in the last Alliance Legislative Report. SB 851 could be considered on the House floor at any time. Alliance members are urged to contact their ...
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ALLIANCE LEGISLATIVE REPORT (100-49) - VETO SESSION WRAPS UP PROPERTY TAX FREEZE LEGISLATION PASSES HOUSE Both chambers of the Illinois General Assembly have adjourned for 2017, a year that saw a full year budget passed, new revenues, and a school funding formula overhaul. The House of Representatives and the Senate are scheduled to convene the 2018 spring veto session in late January.  In previous Fall Veto Sessions, Governor Bruce Rauner was very successful in sustaining a vast majority of his vetoes. However, things were different this year as a number of vetoes were overridden by the General Assembly. The growing number of votes against the Governor ...
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VETO SESSION RESUMES THIS WEEK - ACTION NEEDED ON PROPERTY TAX FREEZE The Illinois General Assembly returns to the Capitol this week for the second week of the Veto Session. This will likely complete the session action for the year. Last week the House Revenue and Finance Committee approved the latest version of a property tax freeze. SB 851, sponsored by Representative Michelle Mussman (D-Schaumburg) in the House, was amended with the freeze language on an 8-1 Committee vote. Details of the bill can be found in the last Alliance Legislative Report. SB 851 could be considered on the House floor at any time. Alliance members are urged to contact their State ...
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This blog post was recently posted by NASSP  and has relevance to the ongoing practice of implementing Senate Bill 100 and restorative discipline. Guest post by John Bartlett It was a normal morning during my second year as a teacher. I got to school early and went to the office to get my second cup of coffee before school started. On the way back to class, it happened—a girl fight. As an educator, you know what I am talking about. You also know that generally girl fights are much more difficult to separate than boy fights. As I stepped in between the two female combatants as their hands clutched at each other’s hair, one of the duelists knocked my ...
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Connect with us:   Problem viewing this email? Click here for our online version.       In This Issue... In this Issue... - A Night of Heroes - Become an Unlearning Leader - Evidence Based Funding ...
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​ Connect with us:   Problem viewing this email? Click here for our online version.       In This Issue... In this Issue... - Making Evaluation Meaningful - Blue Ribbon Schools Announced! - Teacher ...
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                August 29, 2017 Spotlight on the Statehouse ALLIANCE LEGISLATIVE REPORT (100-43) - SCHOOL FUNDING APPROVED BY SENATE Today, the Illinois Senate approved Senate Bill 1947 , the school funding reform bill. Governor Bruce Rauner has vowed to quickly sign the bill into law, thus ending a long stalemate between the partisan caucuses and the two legislative chambers. The bill, which passed the Senate on a vote of 38-13-4, will be effective immediately upon the Governor’s signature. Both the Illinois ...
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Title II Advocacy

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The U.S. Senate will soon host appropriation committees and a markup of the education funding bill. As I’m sure you are aware, Title II funding is at serious risk. Nearly every district receives Title II funding to support the recruitment, preparation, development, and retention of excellent teachers and leaders, but the funding for Title II is in danger of being eliminated. The elimination—or significant reduction—of Title II funding would have drastic and negative impacts on teachers, school leaders, principals, and the students they serve. How to help: Send a message to Congress - Use this link to quickly send a message to your members of Congress ...
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It’s the little things that matter. If you are an educator in Illinois, I am sure you are experiencing challenges with managing a building budget when one might not even exist. Our district has adopted austerity measures until the state passes a funding mechanism for the budget they passed in the summer. This derailed many of our plans to start the year. We had to find ways to get school started without our usual supplies.  We were on our last roll of laminating film (that alone sends shudders of horror down elementary teachers’ backs), we hadn’t ordered our new library books, no new PE equipment or art supplies. We also couldn’t renew some ...
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The title of this blog post isn't subtle. I have been wanting to begin writing a blog for a while now. While I feel like I have great professional conversations regularly, I wasn't sure that I could come up with engaging content regularly. But much of the professional reading I have been doing this summer has been reminding me that taking risks is an important part of growth. In chapter 4 of George Curos'  The Innovator's Mindset , he asks school leaders to to consider three questions.  1. Do people often ask me for permission or guidance? 2. Have I created an environment where risks are not only encouraged but expected? 3. How have I highlighted the great work ...
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Let's Get This Done

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​Friends, During the first six or seven years of my tenure at the IPA (I have lost track), my wife Ashlee and I were either announcing the pregnancy or birth of one of our kids.  (Whew, I am glad that is over! :) This year, though, marks another kind of milestone for our family as all five of our kids now have the opportunity and privilege to attend school.  Next Wednesday, our youngest will join his older sister and three older brothers at Chatham schools.  As you might expect, our home has been filled with excitement and anticipation as we learn about who their teachers will be, collect supplies, and look forward to seeing old friends and making new ones.  ...
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                August 10, 2017 Spotlight on the Statehouse ACTION ALERT: CONTACT LEGISLATORS TO OVERRIDE VETO OF SENATE BILL 1 The Illinois Senate will return to Springfield on Sunday, August 13 while the House returns August 16. The chambers are expected to take action on Governor Rauner's Amendatory Veto of Senate Bill 1. The AV of Senate Bill 1 does damage to schools and is contradictory to the premise of evidence-based funding to provide adequacy and equity in the following ways: Freezing school ...
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The following is a guest post from David LaFrance of the Front Porch Initiative: We all have a story. The  My Story  project from the  Front   Porch  Initiative is a resource to move our relationships forward and connect all students, staff, and families. Grow our true community. As an administrator and teacher I believe building relationships with our students and staff are essential for creating community and allowing meaningful learning to take place. Our students and staff were immediately on-board and wholeheartedly embraced the crafting and sharing of their life stories. The sharing time brought insightful conversations that embodied beginnings, challenges, ...
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​School leadership is not getting any easier. No mystery, right? Even the most seasoned principals are challenged by the complexities of the job and the time required to do it well. Teacher evaluations, learning standards, 21 st century skills, school discipline, restorative justice, etc., etc. layered on top of a myriad of managerial tasks and fires to put out keep you on your toes. However, do not lose sight of the importance of your work. You are engaged in the highest of callings with the opportunity to influence so many. Never doubt that your work matters. Your leadership matters. YOU MATTER!   To help you keep a handle on what you are responsible ...
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The following is the executive summary from Advancing the Illinois Education Research Council report "Illinois Early Childhood Education Workforce: A Model College and Career Pathway" The early childhood educator workforce has widely ranging credentials and degrees, qualifications and compensation, typically varying by setting. Yet, there is a national call for aligning and strengthening requirements for preparation of the early childhood workforce to ensure that young children thrive and reach their potential at each stage in their development. This policy brief, Advancing the Illinois Early Childhood Education Workforce: A Model College and Career Pathway, ...
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Not too long ago, I read a blog post about creating informal opportunities for educators to come together to discuss topics related to teaching and learning through the concept of a #CoffeeEDU . Aligned to the idea of an EdCamp/Uncoference, the goal of a #CoffeeEDU is to provide impromptu and conversational learning opportunities in a short amount of time. #CoffeeEDU events are limited to 1 hour. I set out with the support of our district 1:1 Professional Learning sub-committee to launch our first #CoffeeEDU. Creating a plan for a #CoffeeEDU event is as easy as: Setting a date and time Establishing a location Communicating and sharing the event ...
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This is reposted from the NATIONAL FORUM OF TEACHER EDUCATIONAL JOURNAL, VOLUME 27, NUMBER 3, 2017 Enhancing Education for African American Children Dr. David E. Bartz Professor Emeritus College of Education & Professional Studies Department of Educational Leadership Eastern Illinois University Charleston, IL Eastern Illinois University Dr. Patrick Rice Illinois Association of School Boards Abstract The United States is in a crisis regarding the ineffectiveness of PreK-12 education for African American children. Principals play a key role in alleviating this crisis through culturally responsive school leadership ...
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                May 8, 2017 Spotlight on the Statehouse ALLIANCE LEGISLATIVE REPORT (100-17): TALKS CONTINUE ON BUDGET, FUNDING FORMULA Serious discussions on a State budget and school funding formula changes were prevalent this week in the Capitol – some in public and some in private. With the Senate in session, most of the activity was in that chamber. The House of Representatives was not in session this week. Leadership and budget negotiators were reportedly meeting privately this week to try ...
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 The following is a message from The College Board SAT scores from the ISBE-provided April SAT® School Day administration will be available to students and educators through the College Board Reporting Portal beginning May 2017. The Portal will update as scores are released. Scores for students who submitted a “Request to Cancel Test Scores” form will not be available in the Portal. Please contact College Board at 1-888-728-4357 if you have questions about SAT data posted in the Portal. Separately, ISBE is scheduled to provide SAT scores from the ISBE-provided April SAT® School Day administration in its Student Information System (SIS) on July 10, 2017, for ...
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