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TEXAS ASSOCIATION OF SCHOOL ADMINISTRATORS PROFESSIONAL JOURNAL

WINTer 2009

INSIGHT


Winter 2009 Volume 25

No. 4 FEATURED Articles REL Southwest Research Examines the Alignment of TAKS Mathematics Assessment Standards with the 2009 NAEP

13

Shares key findings from a technical brief developed for Texas by REL Southwest at Edvance Research, including areas of full alignment, partial alignment, and nonalignment; as well as where the TAKS assessment standards go beyond the NAEP standards

Novice Teacher Induction Program: An Investigation of the Long-Range Effects of Induction Support

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by Leslie Huling, Virginia Resta, and Pat Yeargain

Corporate Partner Case Study

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Reading Together in Spring Branch ISD Focuses on how “Reading Together,” a cross-age tutoring program published by The Learning Together Company, is transforming students in not only improved academic performance but social responsibility, emotional development, leadership, and selfconfidence

Gives an overview of NTIP, a collaborative initiative involving the Texas State University System (TSUS), the Houston Endowment, and 37 Texas school districts, including research and evaluation findings, induction support and follow-up research, and program features applicable to other districts

Connecting Education Choices to Economic Futures

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by Susan Combs Describes groundwork for a financial allocation study for Texas required by House Bill 3 that integrates academic performance measures with financial data and helps children make the connections that will encourage them to stay in school and pursue meaningful and profitable lives

Superintendents and Education Service Centers: A Partnership for Student Achievement

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by Jerry Maze, Sandra Harris, Michael Hopson, Robert Nicks, and Heath Burns Examines the challenges of the superintendency, evolving roles of ESCs, results from a recent survey of practicing superintendents, responsive professional development, and the partnership’s future

Legal Insights Enhancing the Board-Superintendent Relationship: Continuing Education and Team Building

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by Neal W. Adams and Jerry D. Bullard Emphasizes the importance of fostering teamwork and cooperation between the superintendent and the board, founded on trust and respect for each other, in order to succeed in the mission to educate and prepare children to fulfill their potential

TASA Annual Report

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Highlights the association’s activities and services during 2008–09

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Departments President’s Message Executive Director’s View

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Officers John M. Folks, President, Northside ISD H. John Fuller, President-Elect, Wylie ISD Rod Townsend, Vice-President, Hico ISD Rick Howard, Past President

Executive Committee Scott B. Owings, Sharyland ISD, 1 Paul Clore, Gregory-Portland ISD, 2 Robert Mark Pool, El Campo ISD, 3 Leland Williams, Dickinson ISD, 4 Philip Welch, Orangefield ISD, 5 Mike Cargill, Bryan ISD, 6 J. Glenn Hambrick, Carthage ISD, 7 Eddie Johnson, Harts Bluff ISD, 8

TASA Headquarters Staff Executive Director

Johnny L. Veselka

Jeff N. Turner, Coppell ISD, 10

Associate Executive Director, Administrative Services

Paul L. Whitton, Jr.

Darrell G. Floyd, Stephenville ISD, 11

Darren Francis, Perrin-Whitt CISD, 9

Kevin Houchin, McGregor ISD, 12

Assistant Executive Director, Communications & Information Systems

Ann M. Halstead

Design/Production

Anne Harpe

Editorial Coordinator

Karen Limb

INSIGHT is published quarterly by the Texas Association of School Administrators, 406 East 11th Street, Austin, Texas, 78701-2617. Subscription is included in TASA membership dues. © 2009 by TASA. All rights reserved. TASA members may reprint articles in limited quantities for in-house educational use. Articles in INSIGHT are expressions of the author or interviewee and do not necessarily represent the views or policies of TASA. Advertisements do not necessarily carry the endorsement of the Texas Association of School Administrators. INSIGHT is printed by Thomas Graphics, Austin, Texas.

David Shanley, Johnson City ISD, 13 Shane Fields, Albany ISD, 14 Russ F. Perry, Nueces Canyon CISD, 15 David G. Foote, Dalhart ISD, 16 Deanna Logan, Ralls ISD, 17 Kevin Allen, Iraan-Sheffield ISD, 18 Lorenzo Garcia, El Paso ISD, 19 Richard A. Middleton, North East ISD, 20

At-Large Members Charles E. Dupre, Pflugerville ISD Gloria Gallegos, Pasadena ISD Sylvester Perez, Midland ISD Gaile B. Thompson, Abilene ISD

Editorial Advisory Committee John M. Folks, chair Mike Cargill, Bryan ISD Gloria Gallegos, Pasadena ISD Richard A. Middleton, North East ISD Sylvestor Perez, Midland ISD Jeff N. Turner, Coppell ISD

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INSIGHT


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Going to Bat for Texas Schools t’s hard to believe another calendar year is almost gone; however, this time of year always gives us pause to reflect on the past year.Though public education faces many challenges, we have much for which to be grateful. I know I am very thankful for all of you who attended the TASA/TASB Convention in Houston in October. I would like to give credit to TASA Executive Director Johnny Veselka and the TASA staff for all the hard work they put into planning such a spectacular event.

President’s Message Without a doubt, under Dr. Veselka’s leadership, TASA has developed into the nation’s premier state association for school leaders. Congratulations, Dr. Veselka. I can’t think of a more deserving Key Communicator!

During the TASA/TASB Convention, Dr. Veselka was announced as the 2009 Key Communicator by the Texas School Public Relations Association (TSPRA). Dr. Veselka has spent the better part of the last 35 years at the helm of TASA, which is proof of his commitment to public education and school administrators. Without a doubt, under Dr.Veselka’s leadership, TASA has developed into the nation’s premier state association for school leaders. Congratulations, Dr. Veselka. I can’t think of a more deserving Key Communicator! Just one example of Veselka’s leadership—and the importance of TASA—is the recent issue over funding for Accelerated Reading Instruction (ARI) and Accelerated Math Instruction (AMI). In the past, this funding had been used by school districts to pay for instructional materials and tutoring for students who failed the math or reading TAKS. Typically, the money was based on a formula related to TAKS failures and was an important source of funding for school districts. However, in the last days of the legislative session earlier this year, legislators decided to turn the distribution of money into a competitive grant process.When this was announced by TEA,TASA got involved and wrote a letter to Commissioner Robert Scott and worked with TEA to show them how this process would hurt the children who needed help the most. As a result, Commissioner Scott did take a portion of the money earmarked for ARI and AMI and restored it to formula-based funding. We also initiated discussions with TEA about the issue of attendance as it relates to H1N1 and ADA funding. In Northside ISD, a drop of 1 percent in our ADA will cost $4 million. Schools cannot afford the financial hit caused by absenteeism as a result of the H1N1 virus. Kudos to TASA’s governmental relations staff for going to bat for Texas schools. I know the TASA staff is busy gearing up for the Midwinter Conference, which will be held at the Austin Convention Center January 24–27. This is such an excellent opportunity for school leaders to come together and learn more about budget and finance, curriculum and instruction, facilities planning, technology, assessment, and more. More than 150 concurrent sessions are planned, and we have several distinguished keynoters, including Commissioner Scott. For more information about the conference and to register, please visit TASA’s Web site at www.tasanet.org. As we head into 2010, I’d like to wish all of you Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!

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a wealth of resources for educators to truly make an impact on student performance. This module is designed to allow teachers to concentrate on the “how’s” of teaching as CCAP focuses on “WHAT” to teach. With CCAP Module 2, customers have the ability to— • Create and maintain their own scope and sequences • Access Region 4 scope and sequences and instructional materials in major subject areas • Customize research-based lesson plan templates • Share lesson plans within a campus or create district master lesson plans • Utilize the McREL Power Walkthrough™ program

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Make It Stick! hip and Dan Heath, in Made to Stick, outlined six traits of effective communication that can facilitate understanding and “stickiness” around critical issues or topics. This work and their upcoming book, Switch, have particular significance as we formulate a strategy to advance the principles stated in Creating a New Vision for Public Education in Texas. In recent planning sessions with the TASA Executive Committee, other TASA committees, and the superintendents who participated in the Public Education Visioning Institute, we have used Made to Stick in exploring ways to transform the Visioning document into a vision that will “stick” with policy makers, educators, parents, and community members throughout the state.

Executive director’s VIEW In recent planning sessions with the TASA Executive Committee, other TASA committees, and the superintendents who participated in the Public Education Visioning Institute, we have used Made to Stick in exploring ways to transform the Visioning document into a vision that will “stick” with policy makers, educators, parents, and community members throughout the state.

Made to Stick’s SUCCESs Model stresses the following traits that are necessary to communicate ideas: Simple, Unexpected, Concrete, Credible, Emotional, and Stories. In their annual planning meeting this fall, for example, the TASA Administrative Services, Central Office, Communications and Technology, and Leadership Development Committees suggested the need to tell stories as we transform our vision into reality—to have students tell their own stories about learning standards, testing, and the digital learning environment. One group suggested the need to develop public service announcements, podcasts, and streaming video to communicate our ideas and “tell the stories of our kids to our communities.” Others suggested the need to create visual images, short stories, and brief talking points for speeches that can be delivered in a variety of settings. In the coming months, we will be developing additional opportunities to discuss the underlying premises of the Visioning document, and translate it into a true vision and action item for “grassroots” discussion. In early January, Visioning Institute participants will begin to explore, in detail, the “assessment” article, and what we need to do to redirect current practices toward true “assessment for learning.” We anticipate developing additional documents that build upon the original work, capturing the key concepts that will be necessary to achieve our goals in establishing new learning standards, assessments for learning, accountability for learning, and organizational transformation in a digital learning environment, guided by a more balanced and reinvigorated state/local partnership. We look forward to the active engagement of TASA members throughout the state in this process as we identify practices that can be implemented locally and policy changes that should be made at the state level. The 2010 TASA Midwinter Conference will feature presentations and opportunities for conversation around these key principles. We look forward to your participation and that of your entire leadership team in this important conference.The conference will again feature best practices in schools across the state and an outstanding array of speakers. Education Expo will feature more than 400 vendors of products and services and state-of-the-art technology, including the Digital Learning Pavilion that was a highlight of the recent TASA/TASB Convention. We look forward to seeing you January 24–27 in Austin.

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2010 Spring/Summer Calendar February 2010 Date

Session

Presenter

Location

4–5

Mentoring the Reflective Principal, Session 1

Jan Jacob

TASA Headquarters, Austin, TX

11–13

American Association of School Administrators Jan Jacob (AASA) National Conference on Education

Phoenix Convention Center, Phoenix, AZ

15–18

Level II Curriculum Management Audit Training

TASA Headquarters, Austin, TX

15–19

Texas Association of School Business Officials (TASBO) 64th Annual Conference

Jan Jacob

24–25 First-time Superintendents Academy, Session Three Experts in the Field

Fort Worth Convention Center, Fort Worth, TX Austin Marriott North Hotel, Round Rock, TX

March 2010 Date

Session

Presenter

6–8

Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD) Annual Conference

Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center, San Antonio, TX

11–12

Mentoring the Reflective Principal, Session 2

TASA Headquarters, Austin, TX

Jan Jacob

22–24 50 Ways to Close the Achievement Gap Fenwick English

Location

Hyatt Regency San Antonio (on the Riverwalk), San Antonio, TX

April 2010 Date

Session

Presenter

Location

14–15 First-time Superintendents Academy, Session 4 Experts in the Field

Austin Marriott North Hotel, Round Rock, TX

15–16

Mentoring the Reflective Principal, Session 3

TASA Headquarters, Austin, TX

16–18

Texas Association of Suburban and Mid-Urban Schools (TAS/MUS) Spring Conference

20–21 Leading Through Quality Questioning

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INSIGHT

Jan Jacob

Beth Sattes, Jackie Walsh

Hyatt Hill Country Resort, San Antonio, TX TASA Headquarters, Austin, TX


May 2010 Date

Session

Presenter

Location

6–7

Mentoring the Reflective Principal, Session 4

Jan Jacob

TASA Headquarters, Austin, TX

11–14

Level I Curriculum Management Audit Training

Jan Jacob

TASA Headquarters, Austin, TX

Presenter

Location

June 2010 Date

Session

9–11

Texas Association of Secondary School Principals (TASSP) 2010 Summer Conference

Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX

9–11

Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association (TEPSA) 2010 Summer Conference

Austin Renaissance Hotel, Austin,TX

10–12

Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) Summer Leadership Institute South

Marriott Rivercenter (on the River walk), San Antonio, TX

14–15

Quality Questioning to Develop Engaged, Responsible, and Reflective Learners

TASA Headquarters, Austin, TX

17–19

Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) Summer Leadership Institute North

Renaissance Worthington, Fort Worth, TX

25–27

Texas Council of Women School Executives (TCWSE) Annual Summer Conference

Austin Renaissance Hotel, Austin,TX

27–29

University of Texas/Texas Association of School Administrators (UT/TASA) 62nd Annual Summer Conference on Education

Austin Renaissance Hotel, Austin, TX

Beth Sattes, Jackie Walsh

iStockphoto ©Rich Legg

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Did you get the message? Austin — the Live Music Capital of the World — is the place to be! ®

TCEA 2010, the largest ed tech convention in the Southwest, takes place February 8-12, 2010 at the Austin Convention Center located in the heart of downtown, walking distance to restaurants, museums, shops, and our very own Town Lake. After a full day of learning, connecting, and networking, experience what Austin is all about — a city like no other city in Texas — offering an array of culture, diversity, and weirdness. Experience Austin destinations: Austin City Limits, SoCo, 2nd Street District, Blanton Museum, Bob Bullock Museum, Austin lakes, and so much more. Enjoy good eats, nightlife, and of course the one of a kind Austin music scene. TCEA 2010 brings you keynoters Christopher Gardner, Erik Wahl, and David Kushner along with the latest trends, hot topics, and hands-on learning in educational technology. Experience Texas-sized events with local favorites The Spazmatics, Redd Volkaert, Kat Edmonson, and Ryan Harkrider. Join us Tuesday, February 9, for the TCEA Leadership Seminar. Administrators and leaders from across Texas will attend this full-day seminar held in conjunction with TCEA 2010.

Get “tech-educated”Austin,Texas style.

Register today!

www.tcea2010.org

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REL Southwest Research Examines the Alignment of TAKS Mathematics Assessment Standards with the 2009 NAEP

REL Southwest at Edvance Research is one of 10 educational laboratories in the Regional Educational Laboratory Network (REL Network), under the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) of the U.S. Department of Education. REL Southwest serves the states of Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas and works for the benefit of more than 7 million students and 500,000 teachers in approximately 14,500 schools in grades pre-kindergarten through college in this five-state region. Contact REL Southwest toll free at 1-877-EDVANCE (1-877-338-2623) or RELinfo@edvanceresearch.com.

REL Southwest at Edvance Research has published research Technical Briefs that examine the state mathematics assessment standards in comparison to the 2009 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) mathematics framework. An individual Technical Brief was developed for each state in the REL Southwest region (Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas).

The Purpose of the Technical Briefs

Key Findings— Texas

The No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act of 2001 requires states to develop challenging academic content and achievement standards in mathematics and to test public school students in grades 3–8 and 10–12 annually to determine how well they are mastering the subject matter defined in the state standards. States must also participate in NAEP mathematics assessments in grades 4 and 8 every two years. NAEP is increasingly being used as a benchmark for assessing and comparing student achievement countrywide.

The findings from this research will better inform Texas educators and policymakers of specific areas in which the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) mathematics assessment standards and the 2009 NAEP assessment standards differ so that they can, if necessary, review and revise their standards. Results are presented for areas of full alignment, partial alignment, and nonalignment; as well as where the TAKS assessment standards go beyond the NAEP standards.

FIGURE 2

Percentage of National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) grade 8 assessment standards addressed by the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills assessment standards by NAEP content area, January 2008 100

Not addressed Partially addressed Fully addressed

75

70 64

59

25

42

19

43

To access the full report, visit:

48

28

27

22

19 11

0

61

58

50

The study finds that 74 percent of NAEP grade 4, 81 percent of NAEP grade 8, and 71 percent of NAEP grade 12 assessment standards are either fully or partially addressed by the TAKS mathematics assessment standards. (See example of grade 8 alignment at left.)

10

9

http://ies.ed.gov/ncee/edlabs/projects/ project.asp?ProjectID=221

11

0

All (100)

Number Measurement properties and (12) operations (27)

Geometry (21)

Data analysis, statistics, and probability (22)

Algebra (18)

NAEP content area (total number of NAEP assessment standards) Source: Expert content reviewers’ summary analysis of data in appendix table B1.

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Weatherford ISD Named Outstanding School Board of Texas, 2009

On October 3, 2009, during the TASA/TASB Convention in Houston, Weatherford ISD (Deborah Cron, superintendent) was named 2009 Outstanding School Board of Texas The selection committee noted that Weatherford ISD exemplifies excellence with a strong focus on student achievement and an accompanying system of recognizing outstanding academic performance.The board is also vested in instructional technology, partnerships with other public and private entities, financial support for facilities, and developing policies for effective board interaction and governance. Dr. Deborah Cron said, “Our Board has always focused on a ‘What’s Best for the Kids’ approach. Also, I am very proud of the many accomplishments each member has made for the sake of not only our district but also our community.” The district had an official celebration in November when TASA Executive Director Johnny Veselka formally presented a plaque to Board President Yale Young and handed out individual awards to each board member and WISD Superintendent Deborah Cron. The celebration marked the second time a WISD Board has earned TASA’s top honor (the last occurring in 1994 under the leadership of Joe Tison).

2009 Honor School Boards Floresville • Lamar • Seguin • Splendora

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Novice Teacher Induction Program: An Investigation of the Long-Range Effects of Induction Support by Leslie Huling, Virginia Resta, and Pat Yeargain Every district wants newly hired teachers to be successful, primarily for the benefit of students, but also to protect the investment the district has made in recruiting, hiring, and providing in-service to the novice teacher as well as the investment the novice teacher has made in his/her professional preparation. To this end, almost all Texas districts provide some type of formalized support for novice teachers, and most are seeking ways of continually improving their induction programs. are not only retained in the profession at higher rates but also become competent more quickly than those who must learn by trial and error (Darling-Hammond, Educators and policymakers had long 2003; Kelley, L. M., 2004; Strong & St. recognized that the repetitive cycle of reJohn, cited in Moir & Baron, 2002). Still, placing novice teachers who get discourin order to more fully understand the cuaged and abandon their teaching careers mulative effects of investments in teacher is not only financially costly to districts induction and mentoring programs, it is but, more importantly, pulls educators necessary to take a long-range view and away from their focus on important to track the career progress of teachers school quality issues (National Commiswho have had the benefit of quality mension on Teaching and America’s Future, toring support. In order to investigate 1996). High levels of teacher attrition these important questions and because resulting from lack of induction support of its commitment to education in Texas, make it difficult for schools to achieve a the Houston Endowment in 2002 gen“critical mass� of faculty who possess the erously provided a $2.75 million grant skills and experience necessary to engage to implement an innovative induction in the type of professional reflection that model aimed at stemming novice teacher leads to refinement of educational pracattrition while facilitating instructional tices. Finally, administrators and teacher growth for participants and to support an colleagues are prevented from focusing ongoing research effort to investigate the on school reform efforts because they long-term effects of the program. must instead devote a substantial portion of their time and attention to supporting Novice Teacher Induction and inducting novice teachers and dealProgram (NTIP) ing with the inevitable educational and parental issues that result from having an The Novice Teacher Induction Program inexperienced teaching faculty. (NTIP) is a collaborative initiative involving the Texas State University System There is evidence that beginning teachers (TSUS), the Houston Endowment, and who experience high-quality mentoring 37 Texas school districts.

The Inverse Relationship of Teacher Attrition and School Success

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Seven TSUS universities worked with area school districts to provide induction support to novice teachers who began their careers in the three school years between 2002–2004 and to engage in a research project that tracked the 957 program participants into their fifth year of teaching. The scope and timeline of this project are depicted in Figure 1 below.

NTIP Induction Support and Follow-Up Research Participating universities include Texas State University–San Marcos, Sam Houston State University, Lamar University, Lamar State College at Orange, Angelo State University, Sul Ross State University, and Sul Ross–Rio Grande campus. NTIP was conceptualized to be a comprehensive support program that incorporated a variety of support components suggested in the professional literature on teacher mentoring (Odell & Huling, 2000; Darling-Hammond & Bransford, 2003; Moore, 2004). Each participating university had an NTIP coordinator who facilitated the program at its campus. Recently retired master elementary and secondary teachers were hired to work on a halftime basis to provide mentoring services two and one-half days per week. Each mentor had a caseload of 8–10 novice teachers and spent two full days per week in the schools observing and conferencing with each novice teacher.

In addition, mentors spent one evening • 94 percent of the novice teacher pareach week in NTIP-sponsored sessions. ticipants reported that their mentors One such evening session was a biweekly were very helpful. group seminar for novice teachers cofacilitated by two mentors and a univer- • 86 percent of the novices rated the sity professor. On alternate weeks, the NTIP graduate seminar as being valumentors met together with the program able to them. coordinator for ongoing professional development in mentoring, case reviews, • 78 percent of NTIP novice teachers and group problem solving. reported that they are likely to continue working toward a graduate degree. Participating novice teachers were enrolled in a field-based graduate course • 75 percent of the NTIP novices reeach semester and earned three hours of ported they feel confident that they graduate credit in the fall and spring. The will still be teaching five years from courses consisted of the biweekly group now (interestingly, the actual fiveseminars, online assignments and interacyear retention was somewhat higher tions, and individualized work with their than originally projected by novice mentors. The NTIP grant paid for tuteachers). ition, fees, and textbooks. • 99 percent of the participating campus administrators indicated they felt that NTIP Research there is a great need for a program to The research conducted on NTIP has support novice teachers. been quite extensive. Not only were evaluation data collected each semester Teacher retention data on each particifrom all program stakeholders, including pating teacher were collected each year novice teachers, mentors, program co- through participants’ fifth year of teachordinators, building principals, and par- ing. Comparison retention data were also ticipating university faculty members, an collected for the state and each education ambitious set of follow-up measures have service center (ESC) region in which been implemented on an ongoing basis. each participating site was located. Participants and stakeholders consistently reported high satisfaction with the sup- Of greatest interest to policymakers is the port they received. A few of the data long-term retention data. Figure 2 on highlights (averaged across three years) page 17 shows how these retention rates are briefly summarized as follows: compare to the the state’s retention rate

Figure 1. NTIP Induction Support and Follow-Up Research 2002-2003 Cohort 1 Cohort 2 Cohort 3 NTIP Mentoring Follow-Up Research

16

INSIGHT

2003-2004

2004-2005

2005-2006

2006-2007

2007-2008

2008-2009


for novice teachers entering the profes- that I learned because of NTIP my first sion during the same year and the com- year. Thanks for letting me be part of the bined average of the retention rates for program.” the specific ESC regions in which the “I am very thankful for the guidance I NTIP projects were located. received as a member of NTIP. I thank Collectively, these data provided com- each person who worked with me and pelling evidence that long-term teacher encouraged me as I started this process.” retention can be positively influenced by high-quality mentor support during the “I am loving my work even with its ups and downs. I recommend your program first year of teaching.

Figure 2.

NTIP Feature Advantages Mentoring by Retired Educators Recall that each mentor was a recently retired master teacher who had a caseload of 8–10 novice teachers and spent two full days per week in the schools observing and conferencing with each novice teacher. In addition, mentors spent one evening each week preparing for and participating in an NTIP session.

A major advantage of this mentoring approach is that because mentors were not assigned as classroom teachers, they had the time during the school day to observe and support novice teachers. In addition, they had the flexibility to spend additional time with a specific novice teacher who needed extra assistance. Finally, retired educators have a wealth of experience to share with novice teachers and many welcome the opportunity to do so on a 3YRS
 4YRS
 5YRS
 part-time basis. As the Baby Boom Gen89.73
 83.96
 79.35
 eration reaches retirement, there will be a 81.07
 73.44
 65.6
 81.87
 74.53
 68.31
 deep talent pool from which districts can 
 select the retirees with the most experhighly to anyone that is interested. I wish tise to mentor novice teachers (NCTAF, we had more programs like it. It was the 2009). difference between choosing teaching or Biweekly Novice Teacher Group another career.” Meetings “There are times when I can’t imagine Every two weeks, novice teachers attended a late afternoon session that was codoing anything else.” facilitated by their own mentor, a second A summary of all NTIP research and mentor, and a university professor. Novevaluation findings (disaggregated by ice teachers earned three hours of graduyear and participating institution) is avail- ate credit in the fall and three hours in able in the Houston Endowment Report the spring. Each session was a combinaposted on TASA’s Web site (www.tasa- tion of structured learning and informal net.org). While school personnel will be support and sharing. The overall focus of interested in these findings, they are no the first-semester seminars was on estabdoubt more interested in how the NTIP lishing effective classroom procedures and features might be applicable to their own practices and professionalism in collegial districts. In the following section, pro- and parental interactions.The guiding fogram developers discuss the program cus of the second-semester seminars was features that they believe to be the most on teacher reflection and instructional refinement. An “exit slip” was collected influential in NTIP’s success.

COMPARATIVE

RETENTION
OF

 NTIP
COHORTS
1­3
(N=954)
 100


90


80


70


60
 2YRS
 NTiP


94.44


ESC


89.13


STATEWIDE


90.15


NTIP staff also collected annual information about participants’ continuation in graduate studies and maintained e-mail contact with participants to monitor their progress in teaching and to capture their reflections about the NTIP experiences years down the road. A total of 208 participants continued their graduate studies and have completed 3,889 graduate hours in education; 82 of the participants have completed their graduate degrees. NTIP has compiled a wealth of qualitative data from participants about their reflections on their NTIP experiences. The following are just a few of the comments collected from Cohort 3 as they completed their fifth year of teaching. “I was so blessed to be part of the NTIP program, and continue to use strategies

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from each participant at the end of the session in which each teacher completed the following two items: (1) One success I have had this week in my teaching is…; and (2) Identify a challenge you are experiencing in your teaching and what you are willing to try in the coming week to address this challenge.” Item #2 is the catalyst for online postings that are described below. Through these biweekly support sessions, novice teachers develop strong collegial relationships with their peers and establish a professional support network that will continue beyond their induction year. Through group interactions with peers, novice teachers learn from each other and experience a group problem-solving process that they can apply throughout their careers. In addition, novice teachers receive the benefit of support from not only their own mentor but also from a second mentor and a university professor who has expertise in structuring their learning about teaching. Finally, mentors are able to use this opportunity to approach teaching challenges from a different angle, and this can be especially helpful with the occasional beginner who has the tendency to stonewall every suggestion with the “I tried that and it didn’t work” response. Ongoing Electronic Peer and Mentor Support Nicenet.org is a free online instructional tool and was used in NTIP to facilitate online communication between and among novice teachers and their mentors. In the two weeks between novice teacher group meetings, participants were asked to do weekly online postings. Recall that at each biweekly novice teacher group seminar, novice teachers completed an “exit slip” and identified a current challenge and something they were willing to try in the coming week to address the challenge. In the week following, the novice teachers submitted online postings in which they reported the progress (or lack thereof) on the challenge. In the second week, novice teach18

INSIGHT

ers were asked to do at least two replies to their colleagues giving them encouragement and/or suggestions. Mentors also gave suggestions and encouragement and monitored the online postings to identify problems in the making that might need their immediate attention. The online peer support was a powerful strategy to help novice teachers build a support system and engage in their own problem solving. As novice teachers became more comfortable with one another and their mentors, they became more open about their challenges. In addition, by reading the challenges others were facing, they felt less isolated and less like “they were the only one having these problems.” Finally, the online communication provided mentors with the opportunity to provide support between their face-to-face visits and to identify when a specific novice teacher might need additional attention and assistance. Biweekly Mentor Seminars The NTIP coordinator for each participating university conducted a biweekly mentor seminar (typically on the alternating weeks between novice teacher group meetings). During these seminars, the coordinator provided additional professional development on mentoring and provided mentors with the opportunity to give a brief update on the progress of their mentees. Mentors who were having a specific mentoring challenge could get suggestions from other mentors on how best to proceed with the mentee. At the meetings, the coordinator also collected the weekly visit documentation forms and other paperwork related to their classroom visits and observation. These sessions were crucial in keeping the mentoring on track and provided mentors with a lot of “positive peer pressure” to reinforce that mentoring takes substantial time, effort, and skill in order to be effective. The professional development on mentoring helped mentors learn new skills and strategies, and the “case reviews” provided mentors the opportunity to

benefit from the collective thinking and support of the group. In addition, the program coordinator had the opportunity to get updates on each novice teacher and to determine if a specific mentor and/ or novice might need support from the coordinator. Program Structure and Coordination Each participating NTIP university had a program coordinator who facilitated multiple aspects of the program, including the recruitment of novice teacher participants, the selection and pairing of mentor teachers, and record keeping related to mentor visits and program evaluation requirements. In addition, the program coordinator planned and conducted the biweekly mentor seminars and rotated among the various biweekly novice teacher group meetings. Every mentor program needs a coordinator to keep the program moving forward and to problem solve situations as they arise for novice teachers and mentors throughout the year.Without deliberate coordination, mentoring tends to slip down the priority list as novice teachers and mentors get busy with other aspects of their professional lives. Having regularly scheduled meetings, along with regularly collecting documentation of mentoring activities, helps program participants and mentors remain focused on their ongoing work together.

Ways Districts Can Adapt and/ or Integrate NTIP Components Districts that aren’t already doing so may want to consider using recently retired master teachers as mentors. While there are advantages to having full-time teachers in the same teaching assignment mentoring novice teachers, there may be even more advantages in having a mentor who has both the time and flexibility to assist the novice during regular school hours. The “retired teacher as mentor” model can be as cost-effective as the full-time


teacher mentor model by redirecting funds typically used to pay mentor stipends and provide mentor training to pay retirees who can each handle a caseload of 8–10 novice teachers. Universities can be valuable partners in providing induction support. Districts that don’t currently have a university partner may wish to explore this possibility, and universities may be eager to participate both as a professional service and because it can be a valuable source of recruiting new graduate students. If a university partner is not feasible, other partners can include regional service centers and professional associations.

coordinator is to collect and monitor documentation of the mentoring services being provided. Program coordination can occur at the district level or the campus level, and the role of the program coordinator should be a substantial part of the individual’s job assignment and not one of many “tacked-on” duties. Regardless of where the coordination originates, a program must have a substantial degree of coordination in order to have maximum impact for program participants.

The authors are from the College of Education at Texas State University–San Marcos. Leslie Huling is a professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction and director of the Education Policy Implementation Center, Virginia Resta is assistant dean for Academic Affairs, and Pat Yeargain is coordinator of the Novice Teacher Induction Program.

References

Darling-Hammond, L. (2003). Keeping A viable teacher induction program is good teachers:Why it matters, what leada critical ingredient to the overall goal ers can do. Educational leadership, 60 (8) of having every classroom staffed with 6–13. a highly competent and caring teacher. Novice teachers bring with them energy, Darling-Hammond, L. and Bransford, Many, if not most, induction programs enthusiasm, and new teaching techniques J. (eds). (2005). Preparing teachers for a are “under-coordinated,” so districts may as they enter their teaching careers. changing world: What teachers should want to consider whether their induc- Through guidance and support from learn and be able to do. Hoboken, NJ: tion program would benefit from a more experienced colleagues, they can realize John Wiley & Sons. focused approach to program coordina- their full potential as teachers and, for tion. Some of the most important coor- years to come, will benefit their students, Kelley, L. M. (2004). Why induction matdination features include getting novice schools, and districts. It is in everyone’s ters. Journal of teacher education 55 (5) teachers together periodically for support best interest to maximize this potential in 438–448. sessions and meeting with mentors on an every way possible, including the proviongoing basis to engage in case review sion of a high-quality induction program Moir, E. and Baron, W. (2002). Looking and continuing professional development. that engages in continuous refinement closely, every step of the way. Journal of Another important role for the program and improvement. n staff development, 23 (4), 54–56.

iStockphoto © Kurt Gordon

Moore Johnson, S. (2004). Finders and keepers: Helping new teachers survive and thrive in our schools. San Francisco, CA: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. National Commission on Teaching and America’s Future (NCTAF). (2009). Learning Teams: Creating What’s Next. New York: Author. National Commission on Teaching and America’s Future (NCTAF). (1996).What matters most: Teaching for America’s future. New York: Author. Odell, S. J. & Huling, L. (eds). (2000). Quality mentoring for novice teachers. Indianapolis, IN: Association of Teacher Educators and Kappa Delta Pi.

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TASA Executive Director Johnny Veselka Honored as TSPRA’s 2009 Key Communicator at TASA/TASB Convention The Texas School Public Relations Association Professional Awards Committee has honored TASA Executive Director Johnny Veselka as the association’s 2009 Key Communicator. The Key Communicator Award recognizes Dr. Veselka’s outstanding contributions to public education through effective communications, citing that he has worked diligently for Texas public schools since he joined the staff of TASA in 1974. When TSPRA officers began the “Key Communicator” Award in 1982, the selection committee noted that Dr. Veselka helped make the Key Communicator Award an even more prestigious honor by announcing the recipient during the TASA/TASB Annual Convention. Twenty-seven years later, it remains a major component of the Convention, thanks in part to his support.

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INSIGHT


Connecting Education Choices to Economic Futures by Susan Combs Nobody grows up dreaming of becoming a tax collector. As a young girl, I wanted to be a rancher, a stewardess, or a ballerina.

The Texas Comptroller’s “Get a Life” site http://www.getalife.tx.gov includes a link to the Texas Workforce Commission’s “Reality Check” site.

My job as Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts may not be as varied as my youthful whims, but it is far from being just a tax collector. As the state’s chief financial officer, I follow the money, estimating and collecting the revenue, paying bills, and tracking the economy.

do you want to be?” is a popular item. What may surprise you is that the Helping People category, which gives overviews of careers in teaching, nursing, and social work, is visited more often than any other, including Building & Fixing Things, Computers, or Sports.

Occasionally, I get to explore topics important to me. In a series of reports, my staff of analysts has tackled obesity, water, energy, and workforce training as essential elements to Texas’ future. Now the Legislature has asked our office to study public education. Specifically, we are to integrate academic performance measures with financial data. We will determine where taxpayers are getting the biggest bang for the buck, if you will.

We also link to Reality Check, a fun online tool created by the Texas Workforce Commission, with real-life implications (Don’t tell the kids!). They pick a Texas city where they want to live. Then they choose their housing, food, transportation, entertainment, and a host of expenses that children don’t usually consider. Taxes are included. We like that. After all, this is the Comptroller’s Web site. At the end, Reality Check gives the student his or her monthly expenses and the annual salary necessary for their lifestyle choices. We hope it helps children make the connection between their lessons today and their lifestyles tomorrow.

This isn’t my first foray into education. In fact, I may be the only state comptroller with a Web site dedicated to children attending middle school. I urge you to share our “Get a Life” Web site (www.getalife. tx.gov) with your faculty. We surveyed middle school students to determine the content—down to the colors. Students can explore careers, watch videos of their peers, plan their summer activities, and, yes, get some good advice on how to turn their interests into careers. Teachers advised us that the site would serve its purpose if it just started students thinking about matching their interests to what they might do for a living. As expected, Exploring Careers under “What

Texas’ economic future is rooted in education. Educators and state policymakers share a great interest in whether the next generation makes the connections that will encourage them to stay in school and pursue meaningful and profitable lives. In TexasWorks, our office explored training and education as critical links to prepare students for worthwhile careers. We discovered a shortage of skilled workers, possibly because many state policies don’t encourage career and technical training.

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In 2007, more than 80 percent of all Texas jobs did not require a bachelor’s degree. More importantly, almost 44 percent of the jobs paying an above-average wage don’t require a college degree. Yet our publicly funded higher education institutions are not meeting the demand for a skilled workforce. In 2007, Texas had almost 44,000 job openings for workers with some postsecondary technical or career training, but the state’s public institutions only produced 36,442 students with the skills needed for those jobs.

and a problem for our economy as well as society in general. Already, too few Texas students complete high school on time. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, only 72.5 percent of the freshman class of 2002 graduated in 2006.

Recent data from the Texas Education Agency demonstrate that high school students who take career and technology courses through a tech prep program have higher graduation rates on average. That’s one reason I’m excited to read about exI am not arguing against a four-year col- amples such as the Career and Technilege education. We need all of our stu- cal Education Center in Frisco ISD. The dents to be educated to their greatest po- center, which is located centrally among tential. Yet our one-size-fits-all model of Frisco’s five high schools, serves 1,600 education too often discourages students juniors and seniors who have completed their prerequisites. who aren’t college-bound.

I am no Susan-come-lately to education. By the time you are reading this, our office will be several months into preparing the Financial Allocation Study for Texas as required by House Bill 3. In laying the groundwork for the study, one of my first actions was to recruit a panel of school superintendents to advise us. School leaders know the best measures of student performance. They know what federal and state mandates are tying their hands. They know what is diverting time and money from the task at hand— educating our children. We also have contracted with The University of Texas at Dallas to use data from its Education Research Center and to help us devise the study’s methodology.

“If we can find that creativity and that spark and allow them to entertain their passions and dreams,” says Wes Cunningham, the center’s principal, “the students are going to do well.”

I also recruited a diverse group of experts outside UT-Dallas to provide guidance for my research team, and our methodology will be submitted for outside peer review.

The courses are tailored to the needs of the Frisco community. Students can pursue certifications for food safety, nurse assisBy 2040, almost one-third of the state’s tant, pharmacy technician, law enforceworkforce is expected to be without a ment, nursery professional, veterinary high school diploma. That’s shocking— assistant, or computer programming.

We will be working with the Texas Education Agency to help school districts adopt best practices based upon the study’s results. You can follow all of this on our Web site at www.window.state. tx.us/education/fast/index.html.

The chart I’ve included from TexasWorks compares the education levels of the 2000 workforce to the projected 2040 labor pool. Texas cannot maintain its economic success in a global economy when the workforce is projected to have a dramatically smaller percentage of high school and college graduates.

35% 30 25

I would love to hear from you as well. Our goal is to learn how the bestperforming schools do what they do— and then share that information. If we do this right, the study can be a roadmap for the Legislature. I invite you to be our Reality Check.

20 15 10 5

Susan Combs is Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts.

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Superintendents and Education Service Centers: A Partnership for Student Achievement by Jerry Maze, Sandra Harris, Michael Hopson, Robert Nicks, and Heath Burns Superintendents and their regional education service centers (ESCs) share a four decade partnership that today is focused tighter than ever on the demands of leading schools for student achievement. ESCs have evolved in scope of services from the media centers of the late 1960s to full-service one-stop shops for programs and services supporting school improvement and operations. At the heart of all school improvement efforts is the impact that school district leadership, most notably the superintendent, has on student achievement. Current research links superintendent leadership behaviors to student achievement (Marzano & Waters, 2006). We recently conducted a statewide study in collaboration with ESC Region 12 in Waco to examine Texas superintendent perceptions of the effectiveness of their professional development at ESCs in leading for student achievement in areas identified by the Marzano and Waters (2006) study. We found a high level of agreement among Texas superintendents that their partnership is trending in the right directions related to their professional development for leading student achievement in Texas.

Challenges of the Superintendency Contrary to ideas emerging from media exposure in larger schools, today’s superintendents continue to practice mostly in small towns in rural and suburban America, with fewer than 100 of the nation’s 14,000 school districts classified as urban (Glass & Franceschini, 2007). This demographic is reflected in Texas schools also and in our study, which had about 80 percent of respondents from schools in UIL classifications 3A and smaller. Though holders of a very traditional position dating back to the oneroom schoolhouse, today’s superintendents must possess a rich set of leadership skills as district chief executive officers capable of weaving educational, social, and political complexities into the fabric of student achievement. Passage of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB) and the accompanying demands for school reform further forced the evolution of the superintendency into a role requiring more complex leadership skills. The implications of NCLB, accompanied by resulting funding dilemmas, along with mixed signals from school boards regarding school reform, depict the multitude of expectations facing superintendents leading their districts in search of achievement for all students. Of 1,338 superintendents responding to a nationwide study by Glass and Franceschini (2007) for the American Association of School Administrators (AASA), 96 percent felt they were performing effectively. However, most lacked the experience or desire to implement wholesale reform, as only 9.4 percent of superintendents responding said

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they were hired due to previous experience as a change agent. Glass and Franceschini (2007) noted the pace of reform and the resulting disconnect of beliefs among reformers, superintendents, school boards, and their communities created a paradox of change seldom discussed in the dialogue of school improvement.

and in part because of the relationships arising from close geographic proximity. ESCs are generally considered in the best position to meet the demands of scale, capacity, efficiency, and technical expertise to support schools in meeting demands for student achievement (Arson, Bell, & Plank, 2006).

Superintendents and their school boards were described by Glass and Franceschini (2007) as “traditional harbingers of normalcy, valuing gradual rather than radical change” (p. 4). Additionally, they valued the progress made in their local schools and expressed the need for moderate change locally, while they acknowledged the need for radical change for education in general.

ESCs are held accountable by the Texas Commissioner of Education through Chapter Eight of the Texas Education Code for promoting student achievement in their regional schools, along with promoting efficiency for schools and supporting statewide initiatives as defined by the commissioner. Each executive director of Texas ESCs is evaluated annually by the commissioner with a focus on student achievement.Through the statewide initiatives domain in the evaluation, ESCs have received expanding roles as part of decentralizing support for schools and downsizing the Texas Education Agency.

As an extension of similar beliefs, Glass and Franceschini (2007) reported that communities preferred superintendents who were considered traditional school leaders and who would approach change gradually. Thus, school boards often hire superintendents who lead conservatively with sensitivity for the local community’s limited tolerance for change. However, demands for increased student performance have placed superintendents, schools, and communities in a position to need increased leadership for radical change to meet current school reform expectations.

What We Did in Our Study We asked superintendents practicing in the 2008–09 school year to participate

INSIGHT

1. establishing non-negotiable goals for student achievement 2. establishing board alignment with and support for district goals 3. monitoring goals for achievement and instruction

Comparisons by UIL Classification Non-negotiable Goals

2A

Mean Score 12.66

As conflicting expectations and demands Board Alignment and Support on superintendent leadership skills have 1A 16.17 increased, so have opportunities for ESCs 16.17 to support superintendents in leading 1A 16.12 student achievement reforms (Keane, 2A 2005). The professional literature defines 2A 16.12 ESCs as educational intermediary institutions acting under the supervision of the Monitoring Goals Texas Education Agency without regula1A 15.68 tory authority over schools. ESCs have 15.38 the best opportunity to provide support 1A 15.57 for their regional schools in part because 2A of distance from local political pressures 2A 15.57 28

Marzano and Waters (2006) conducted a meta-analysis of 27 studies conducted since 1970, involving 2,817 districts and 3.4 million student achievement scores, searching for common superintendent behaviors that led to student achievement. Their research identified six areas of superintendent leadership with positive correlations to student achievement. From those leadership behaviors we selected the following three behaviors to investigate:

Table 1

UIL Classification

Evolving Roles of ESCs

in our study and 292 responded. The responding group was 85 percent male, 92 percent white, and 70 percent between ages 35 and 56. Seventy-two percent reported practicing as superintendents for 10 years or less. We invited them to give their perceptions of the effectiveness of their professional development at regional ESCs.

UIL Classification

Mean Score

3A

11.25

3A

13.97

5A

13.16

3A

13.99

5A

13.16

3A

13.74

5A

13.14

3A

13.74

5A

13.14


We designed a survey instrument to collect superintendent perceptions of the effectiveness of their ESC-based professional development for these three superintendent leadership behaviors. Respondents gauged their perceptions on a Likert scale from 1 (not effective) to 4 (effective) and then responded narratively to three open-ended questions addressing their preferences for future professional development, barriers, and ways that ESCs could help them overcome barriers to their professional development.

finance, the barrier of time to receive professional development, and the recommendation that ESCs offer more distance learning opportunities for superintendents to overcome time and monetary barriers.

What We Found

By UIL Classification

Statistically significant differences in superintendent responses were found in three of nine demographic areas—UIL classification, school enrollment, and money spent on superintendent professional development.

Table 1 illustrates results when compared by UIL classification. Statistical significance was found in the areas of nonnegotiable goals for achievement and instruction, board alignment with and support of district goals, and monitoring goals for achievement and instruction. Higher mean scores of smaller school superintendents indicated a higher level of agreement of effectiveness among smaller school superintendents when compared to responses of larger school superintenThe greatest occurrence of “effective” dents. Consistently throughout the study, and “mostly effective” scores from su- mean scores among superintendents of perintendents were for professional de- smaller schools were found higher when velopment in the area of guaranteeing compared to mean scores of superintenthat the curriculum meets the needs of dents of larger schools. These results are all students, followed closely by establish- illustrated in Table 1 (page 28). ing efficient delivery of the district curriculum, establishing clear priorities for By School Enrollment instructional goals and objectives, then Table 2 illustrates results when consideragreement with the board on the effec- ing school enrollment. Response differences were found statistically significant tiveness of board training. among superintendents of school enrollThe lowest occurrence of “effective” and “mostly effective” scores were in the areas Table 2 of professional development to establish five-year non-negotiable goals, followed Comparisons by School Enrollment by use of a management system for inBoard Alignment and Support structional change, and then using an evaluation system to monitor implemenEnrollment Mean Score tation of instructional goals. The highest levels of response for the open-ended 1–499 16.07   questions were superintendent concerns 500–999 16.24   for professional development in school Findings from the study indicated an overall perception of effectiveness among superintendents regarding their ESCbased professional development for leading student achievement. The average response from all questions on the survey in the “effective” (highest) category was 32 percent; the average response in the “mostly effective” (next highest) category was 41 percent.

ments 1–499 when compared to those of superintendents of school enrollments 2,000–3,999 in the area of board alignment with and support of district goals. Significance was also found when comparing responses from superintendents of school enrollments 500–999 to those of superintendents from school enrollments of 2,000–3,999. In both instances, consistent with the analysis by UIL classification, higher mean scores of smaller school superintendents indicated a higher level of agreement of effectiveness among smaller school superintendents when compared to mean responses of larger school superintendents. These results are illustrated in Table 2 (below).

By Money Spent Significant differences appeared when we compared responses by amounts of money districts spend on superintendent professional development. In the area of board alignment with and support for district goals, higher mean responses of superintendents from schools spending less than $10,000 per year, which were typically the smaller school superintendents, indicated a higher level of agreement of effectiveness among those superintendents versus superintendents from schools spending $10,000 or more. These results are illustrated in Table 3 (page 30). Superintendent responses from the remaining demographic areas studied show no significant differences: gender, ethnicity, age, number of days out-of-district for professional development, years as a

Enrollment

Mean Score

2,000–3,999

13.90

2,000–3,999

13.90

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superintendent, and number of years in their current superintendency.

What We Learned from Our Study

achievement and using systems to implement and monitor instructional change, for example, are not new to ESC training. Consequently, lower effectiveness scores in these areas indicate an emerging importance for superintendents in these areas of practice.

serving as guides for ESCs in developing present and future professional development opportunities.

Schools in classifications 1A–3A represent the core clientele of ESCs based on Responses related to non-negotiable their rate of response and their higher goals for student achievement, mainlevel of agreement of effectiveness. For taining board support for goals, and Superintendents from smaller schools ESCs to remain the key providers of sumonitoring and evaluating the district reported ESC-based professional de- perintendent professional development, instructional program all resulted in two velopment as more effective than their they will be required to create innovative common conclusions: (a) superintendents larger-school colleagues. Additionally, and relevant solutions responsive to the from smaller schools have a higher level superintendents from schools investing perceived barriers and recommendations of agreement of effectiveness; and (b) su- more money in superintendent profes- of superintendents. For example, superperintendents from schools spending less sional development perceived ESC-based intendents suggested distance learning as than $10,000 per year on superintendent professional development as less effec- a possible solution to perceived barriers. professional development have a higher tive than those from schools spending ESCs possess the technology and capaclevel of agreement than those spending less money. The findings of differences in ity to expand distance learning, online $10,000 or more. professional experiences related to school courses, and virtual training activities for size and money spent might impact su- superintendents. The highest scores of effectiveness from perintendent perceptions of effective superintendents appeared in areas with a professional development. Relationships with school leaders and longer history of emphasis by ESCs and their communities will remain vital superintendent expectations for ESC- Responsive Professional through ESCs’ responses to superinbased professional development. Profes- Development tendents’ stated needs. ESCs depend on sional development areas such as board superintendents as their core customtraining; curriculum development; and Superintendent perceptions from this ers, purchasing professional development training for instruction to meet the needs study provide guidance for Texas ESCs in services for themselves and their schools. of varied student populations, for exam- their continued effort to create and refine On-site training will no doubt remain ple, are long-standing staples of the ESC relevant professional development oppor- popular and must be improved and extraining repertoire. tunities for superintendents in leading for panded in the student-achievement arstudent achievement. Areas of leadership eas indicated by superintendents in this The areas of least incidence of “effective” training for student achievement related study. and “mostly effective” responses are areas to more recent accountability standards becoming more important to superin- scored lower for superintendent percep- The Partnership’s Future tendent leadership as accountability stan- tions of effectiveness. Themes emerging dards increase. Professional development from this study suggest areas of impor- Our study affirmed and expanded what for sustaining five-year goals for student tance and interest for superintendents, we know about Texas school superinten-

Table 3 Comparisons by Money Spent Board Alignment and Support Amount Spent per Year

Mean Score

Amount Spent per Year

Mean Score

$0–$999

12.84

$10,000

12.28

$1,000–$1,999

12.78

$10,000

12.28

$2,000–$4,999

12.46

$10,000

12.28

$5,000–$9,999

13.59

$10,000

12.28

30

INSIGHT

dents and the ESCs that provide much of their training. Superintendents are the pinnacle of educational leadership and often the end-recipients of accountability. As chief executive officers of their school districts, they bring a high level of skill to managing a multitude of competing social systems as suggested by Fullan (2005) within their schools, communities, and governmental entities—systems populated by people concerned for their children and the efficient and effective operation of their schools. Competing interests are


often in disagreement, though always with the same goal in mind of educating children. The superintendent seeks to create coherence from the chaos of competing ideas. ESCs are often staffed by former superintendents and fellow educators who have followed similar career paths while holding firmly to the ideas of improving the world through education. ESCs are in the best position to assist superintendents because of those common experiences often gained within the locale of the ESC region. Shared commitment and trust arising from those relationships will continue to bind ESCs and superintendents on the mission to lead schools for student achievement, the only true accountability standard. n

Dr. Jerry Maze is an associate executive director at ESC Region 12 in Waco; Dr. Sandra Harris is director of the Center for Doctoral Studies, and Dr. Michael Hopson and Dr. Robert Nicks are associate professors, Educational Leadership, Lamar University in Beaumont; and Dr. Heath Burns is superintendent at Angleton ISD in Angleton.

Glass, T. & Franceschini, L. (2007). The state of the American school superintendency: A mid-decade study. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Education and American Association of School Administrators (AASA).

Keane, W. (2005). Introduction. Developing leaders: What is the role of ESAs? Perspectives: A Journal of Research and References Opinion about Educational Service Arsen, D., Bell, C., & Plank, D. (2004). Agencies, 11, iii–v. Who will turn around failing schools? A framework for institutional choice. Marzano, R. & Waters, T. (2006). School Perspectives: A Journal of Research and district leadership that works: The effect Opinion about Educational Service of superintendent leadership on student Agencies, 10, 1–19. achievement, a working paper. Retrieved August 11, 2008, from the Mid-continent Fullan, M. (2005). Leadership and sustain- Research for Education and Leadership ability: System thinkers in action. Thou- (McREL) Web site, http://www.mcrel. sand Oaks: Corwin Press. org/topics/Leadership/products/244.

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Corporate Partner Case Study Reading Together in Spring Branch ISD “I don’t know what you guys are up to,” the teacher said as she cornered the superintendent during a site visit. A conversation starter like that usually means a litany of problems, but this time Sally Russell had a more positive agenda. “I don’t know what’s going on, but this new program is changing lives,” Ms. Russell told Spring Branch ISD Superintendent Duncan Klussmann.The program is “Reading Together,” a supplemental intervention that is pairing second-grade tutees with fourth-grade tutors at Terrance Elementary. Tutor training is an integral part of Reading Together, and the process totally transformed one student in a single day. “Jason was a quiet boy who never raised his hand in class. He went to the first tutor training and became a different child overnight. He participates, he’s interested, he’s reading. It was all because someone believed in him enough to ask him to tutor,” his fourth-grade teacher said. Spring Branch ISD (SBISD), a 32,000-student district in Houston, piloted Reading Together last year in Terrance and three other elementary schools. Programs operate before, during, and after school, depending on campus needs. Both second-grade tutees and their fourthgrade tutors are struggling readers, and the academic and emotional outcomes have been measurable. Sue Loudis, coordinator for Partnerships and Volunteer Programs, who leads the SBISD initiative, reports that a significant majority of the students involved in the program showed academic gains. “In some cases, the gains were remarkable,” she said. For example, one coordinator noted that the two bilingual students in her program advanced significantly; one went from a developmental reading assessment (DRA) level 14 to level 34, and the other from level 12 to level 28. Two mainstream students went from level 18 to level 30, with an overall average for all students of two to six levels of increased fluency and comprehension. Every Reading Together coordinator responding to the year-end survey noted improved to greatly improved academic performance for tutees and tutors, but also commented on their growth in social responsibility, emotional development, leadership, and self-confidence as a result of the peer tutoring experience. “We had a tutee who was getting in trouble a lot. By the end of the program, he received straight A’s, nothing but S’s in conduct, and had the most points in the Accelerated Reading program in his class,” one coordinator noted in the survey. “The tutors and tutees have become friends.They talk together, share events with each other, and really seem to care for each other. My joy came in watching them interact with each other in a caring way.” Reading Together is a cross-age tutoring program published by The Learning Together Company, www.learningtogether.com. It focuses on fluency, comprehension, and vocabulary for struggling students beginning in grade two.

32

INSIGHT


President’s Circle

Platinum

Corporate Partners 2009–10 GOld

TASA is grateful to our corporate partners for their support.

Each level of the Corporate Partner Program is designed to offer our partners quality exposure to association members. Partners at the President’s Circle, Platinum, and Gold levels may customize special events and opportunities.

Silver

Bronze

Apple CTB/McGraw Hill Pearson Penn Foster SHW Group Tango Software CompassLearning CORE K12 Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Indeco Sales, Inc. PBK Scholastic Scientific Learning SMART Technologies TCPN The Princeton Review Discovery Education Health Matters LifeTrack Services, Inc. Renaissance Learning The Learning Together Company Balfour Cisco eNet Solutions Linebarger Goggan Blair & Sampson, LLP SureScore TCG Group Holdings, Inc. Wireless Generation Achieve3000 Agile Mind Alton Lynch Associates Cambridge Strategic Services Creating and Managing Wealth, LLC First Southwest Company Laying the Foundation LenSec OdysseyWare Petermann Southwest, LLC PrepMe.Com PuraDyn Sodexo Texas Instruments The College Board VALIC


Titanium

Diamond

Gold

Silver

Bronze


©istockphoto.com/dny59

Legal Insights Enhancing the Board-Superintendent Relationship:

Continuing Education and Team Building The success of any school district in fulfilling its mission to educate and prepare children depends on teamwork between the superintendent and the board of trustees. Teamwork founded on trust and respect for each other and the responsibilities that each has in managing and overseeing the management of the school district. In addition to the extraordinary commitment of time, energy, and attention demanded of the superintendent and the individual members of the board of trustees (“board members”) in the management of the day-to-day operations and overseeing this management, respectively, these school district leaders must remain committed to fostering and developing the relationship among them that allows the school district to succeed. Superintendents, whether new or experienced, routinely seek counsel to assist them in facilitating development of the level of teamwork necessary to create a successful school district. Based on discussions with numerous superintendents over the last several months, it appears there are a number of school districts

that are failing to use some of the tools already available to them to be successful, including the statutory requirement for board members to receive continuing education.

Continuation Education Requirements Imposed by Law Section 11.159(b) of the Texas Education Code requires each board member to complete any training required by the State Board of Education (“SBOE”). Tex. Educ. Code §11.159(b). At the meeting at which the call for election of board members is normally scheduled each year, the president of the board of trustees must announce the name of each board member who has completed the required continuing education, who has exceeded the required hours, and who is deficient in the required hours. Id.; 19 Tex. Admin. Code §61.1(j). The board’s minutes must reflect this information. Id. Pursuant to its statutory grant of authority, SBOE has adopted a framework for governance leadership to be used in

structuring continuing education for board members. SBOE’s continuing education requirements consist of orientation sessions, an annual team building session with the board of trustees and the superintendent, and specified hours of continuing education based on identified needs. 19 Tex. Admin. Code §61.1(b). Specifically, the continuing education requirements include the following: (a) New Board Member—Local District and Legal Orientation Sessions Each new board member must participate in a local district orientation session within sixty (60) days before or after the board member’s election or appointment. 19 Tex. Admin. Code §61.1(b)(1) (a). Within the first year of service, each newly elected board member must receive a basic orientation to the Texas Education Code and relevant legal obligations, with special emphasis on statutory provisions related to governing Texas school districts, delivered by the regional education service center (“ESC”) and three (3) hours in length. 19 Tex. Admin. Code § 61.1(b)

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35


(1)(A)-(C). The topics must include, but not be limited to, Chapter 26 (Parental Rights and Responsibilities) and §28.004 (Local School Health Education Advisory Council and Health Education Instruction) of the Texas Education Code. Id. (b) All Board Members—New Legislation Orientation Sessions

ongoing professional development. Tex. Educ. Code §11.159(b). (d) All Board Members—General Continuing Education In addition to the continuing education and team building requirements set forth above, each board member is required to receive annually specified hours of continuing education based on identified needs and provided by the ESC or other registered providers, to wit:

After each session of the Texas Legislature, including each regular session and called session related to education, each board member is required to receive an orientation update delivered by the ESC • In a board member’s first year of service, a minimum of ten (10) hours. or any registered provider. 19 Tex. Admin. Code § 61.1(b)(1)(D). The session must • Following a board member’s first year of service, a minimum of five (5) hours be of sufficient length to familiarize board annually. members with major changes in the code and other relevant legal developments re- • The president of the board of trustees must receive continuing education lated to school governance. Id. A board annually related to leadership duties of member who has attended an ESC basic a board president. orientation session that incorporates the most recent legislative changes is not required to attend the update. Id. 19 Tex. Admin. Code §61.1(b)(3). (c) Board and the Superintendent— Annual Team Building

36

INSIGHT

Although not expressly required by law, the superintendent should (1) take a proactive approach and assume responsibility for informing the board and all board members of their continuing education requirements under the law; (2) arrange opportunities for continuing education sessions with input from the board members, and with presenters that the board respects; and (3) assist the board of trustees in identifying specific individual and team training needs in addition to the minimum continuing education requirements. Whenever possible, each superintendent should endeavor to attend all continuing education sessions with their board members. Attendance at such events provides a prime opportunity to enhance the relationship between the superintendent and their board members.

The superintendent is responsible for beTo the extent possible, the entire board ing, and keeping the board of trustees, of trustees must participate in continuing informed on legal issues and changes in the law that affect the school district and education programs together.

iStockphoto ©Alpamayo Software, Inc.

The entire board of trustees (including all board members) must annually participate with the superintendent in a team building session facilitated by the ESC or any registered provider. 19 Tex. Admin. Code §61.1(b)(2). The team building session must be of a length deemed appropriate by the board but last at least three (3) hours. Id. The purpose of the annual team building session is to enhance the effectiveness of the board-superintendent team and to assess the continuing education needs of the board-superintendent team. The assessment of needs must be based on the framework for governance leadership and used to plan continuing education activities for the year for the governance leadership team. Id. The superintendent’s participation in team building sessions as part of the continuing education for board members represents one component of the superintendent’s

Superintendent’s Duties and Board Members’ Continuing Education


the board of trustees. Many of the periodicals and publications that superintendents and school districts receive through professional and other associations provide an excellent resource for providing these updates to board members in their board packets delivered at or before each meeting of the board of trustees. Myriad information resources are available to the school district’s leaders, including: • Texas Education Agency • Regional Education Service Centers • State and local associations, including the Texas Association of School Administrators (TASA) and the Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) • The school district’s or the superintendent’s attorneys • Independent consultants • Conventions, conferences, and seminars • Newsletters and periodicals

Summary The school district cannot succeed in its mission to educate and prepare children to fulfill their potential without teamwork and cooperation between the superintendent and board of trustees. A successful relationship between the superintendent and board requires, first and foremost, trust. Cultivating and maintaining the trust necessary to form the foundation for a successful relationship requires commitment and communication by both parties, coupled with an awareness of the state laws governing their relationship. As the district’s chief executive officer, the superintendent must foster and maintain such a relationship with the board of trustees.

This article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for legal advice. Specific questions and circumstances regarding the issues addressed in this article should be individually discussed with legal counsel. Neal W. Adams Jerry D. Bullard Adams, Lynch & Loftin, P.C. GENERAL COUNSEL TEXAS ASSOCIATION OF SCHOOL ADMINISTRATORS

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Texas Association of School Administrators

Texas Association of School Administrators ANNUAL REPORT

n

2008–09

Annual Report n

The Texas Association of School Administrators was formed in 1925. The purpose of the organization is to promote the progress of education in the state of Texas. In pursuit of this objective, the association works for the improvement of instruction and administrative practices in the schools of the state. The association also works in close cooperation with the Texas Association of School Boards and the American Association of School Administrators in all areas of common interest.

2008–09 39


2008–09 Annual Report

n

Mission, Vision, Goals, and Objectives Mission

Texas Association of School Administrators

n

The mission of the Texas Association of School Administrators is to promote, provide, and develop leadership that champions educational excellence.

Vision TASA provides support for school leaders through: • • • • • • • •

Fostering programs and activities that focus on leadership development Impacting laws, policies, and practices that will improve education Supporting and promoting research-based decision making Developing, retaining, and supporting highly qualified educational leaders Cultivating positive school climates in which quality education can thrive Enhancing the influence of and respect for educational leaders Recognizing diversity and building on commonalities Serving as a catalyst for cooperative efforts

Goals and Objectives Quality Student Learning

Proactive Governmental Relations

To promote and provide leadership for the advancement of education in order to attain programs that result in high levels of student achievement

To impact laws, regulations, and decisions to improve the quality and effectiveness of education, and to elevate the status of educational leaders in the governmental decision-making process

Positive School Climates To engage in activities that foster positive climates for learning and to advocate as a high priority of our society a public understanding of and support for quality education

Systemic School Improvement To promote ongoing, proactive leadership that recognizes and utilizes a systemic approach to improvement and restructuring in education

Ongoing Professional Development To offer high-quality, professional development opportunities for educational leaders in order to promote effective organizational management and leadership

40

Advanced Educational Technology To promote the development and effective utilization of advanced educational and administrative approaches and technologies

Synergistic Organizational Relationships To recognize and respect diversity and to build upon commonalities between educational organizations in efforts to achieve mutual goals for the benefit of Texas schoolchildren

Effective Member Assistance To provide educational leaders and their systems of education with well-managed, innovative services that assist in the orderly and effective discharge of professional responsibilities for quality education programs and student achievement


n Active Members  are those who

(1) meet the requirements for a professional administrator’s certificate as determined by the State Board of Education, (2) have equivalent professional training, or (3) serve in administrative positions. n Associate Members  are

Category

2004–05 2005–06 2006–07 2007–08 2008–09

Superintendent

981

965

972

971

972

Central Office*

707

803

871

842

861

Education Service Center

47

47

48

48

54

University/College

39

39

51

42

48

Association/Agency

10

11

9

10

10

Miscellaneous

235

52

44

42

43

Paid Life Retired

23

25

22

22

22

1,942

2,017

1,977

2,010

Total Active Members 1,842 Associate

124

151

178

167

190

Student

13

31

37

30

35

2,124

2,232

2,174

2,235

Total All Members 1,980

currently enrolled in a college or university department of educational administration who are not employed in a full-time administrative position other than at the campus level. Student members receive all TASA mailings and publications but are not eligible to vote. Our student members are an enthusiastic, dedicated group, and we look forward to welcoming them as active members once they attain full-time administrative positions.

2008–09

Membership Enrollment Compared by Category, 2004–05 through 2008–09

n Student Members  are individuals

n

Texas Association of School Administrators

Members  are professors who are employed full-time in a college or university department of educational administration and persons who are employed by Texas state agencies. These members are eligible for active membership in the association upon payment of one-half the minimum annual membership for active members who are not superintendents.

Annual Report

companies and individuals who wish to showcase products and services to Texas’ top education executives. TASA’s associate members include school architects, attorneys specializing in school law, representatives of education-related businesses and associations, and school suppliers. TASA’s associate members are valuable supporters of our programs, services, and purpose. They receive all TASA publications, but are not eligible to vote.

n College/University/State Agency

n

The membership of the Texas Association of School Administrators is a diverse group of education leaders— ranging from superintendents and deputy superintendents to curriculum and personnel directors to business managers. Our members are an involved, concerned group, and meeting their professional needs and goals is of primary importance to the association. With many different categories of administrators, it is our challenge to offer professional development opportunities and services that will meet the unique needs of the largest possible percentage of our membership. There are four categories of dues-paying members:

Texas Association of School Administrators

Membership

n n n

Honorary Life Members  are an important non-dues paying segment of our membership. These retired administrators serve as the cornerstone of our association. Without their dedication and involvement, both past and present, TASA would not be the strong, viable association it is today. We promote and encourage their involvement in the association’s activities.

*Includes campus staff, charter school members, and private school members.

If you have questions about your membership, would like to recommend individuals in your district for membership, or need additional information about becoming a member, please contact Brettany Zirkle, manager, Membership and Data Services, 512.477.6361 or 800.725.8272.

41


2008–09 n

Annual Report

Revenue

n

Making an Investment in Progress

Texas Association of School Administrators

Any strong, viable organization requires a continuing source of revenue to fulfill its goals and objectives, and TASA is no exception to that rule. In order to drive the development and delivery of association programs and services, TASA relies on diversified revenue sources, including: n membership support n TASA/TASB Annual Convention n seminars and training n corporate sponsorships n program endorsements n and building operations

The chart below illustrates TASA’s revenue sources for 2008–09.

Texas Association of School Administrators Total Revenue 2008–09

Convention 12% Miscellaneous

9%

Building Operations 2% Membership Dues

16%

Royalties/Sponsorships

42

19%

Professional Development/Services 42%


Texas Association of School Administrators

Governmental Relations With the active assistance of its members, TASA’s Governmental Relations Department has a vital role in keeping superintendents and other administrators informed of state legislative and policy decisions and pending actions. n 2008–09

Highlights

• Devoted significant time, energy, and resources to legislative and state policy matters. • Continued efforts to address school funding and equity issues, while simultaneously dealing with the changes to our accountability system and other issues that evolved from the session.

n

• Monitored developments regarding the use of federal stimulus money for public education.

Annual Report

• Monitored bills filed during the regular legislative session related to education matters, and prepared summaries of bills tracked by TASA.

n

• Monitored hearings and provided testimony regarding school finance, public school accountability, and other education-related issues.

2008–09

• Engaged legislators and policymakers year round in the legislative process by providing information and testimony to boards and agencies, including the State Board of Education, Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, State Board for Educator Certification, Teacher Retirement System of Texas, and Texas Education Agency. • Briefed members on new accountability requirements for school districts.

81st Legislative Session

• Compiled the 81st Legislative Final Bill Report.

Final Bill Report

• Provided post-session legislative updates to regional education service centers, superintendents, and other organizations. • Communicated with the Texas Education Agency regarding post-session legislation and issues. • Organized and presented a legislative conference, addressing current issues that were pending before the legislature. Texas Association of School

A Cost Analysis for Texas Public

Schools

Administrators

• Sponsored an updated study prepared by Moak, Casey & Associates, resulting in two documents to help lawmakers, taxpayers, and parents understand what goods and services were purchased by school districts and how those purchases contributed to the education process: A Cost Analysis for Texas Public Schools, 2008 Update; and Tracking the Education Dollar in Texas Public Schools.

Prepared by:

• Provided continuous updates on legislative developments on the association’s Web site, TASAnet.

Sponsored by:

• Identified unfunded mandates impacting school districts. 2008 Update

• Published Capitol Watch, TASA’s online legislative news bulletin, with regular updates during the legislative session. • Published TASA XPress News, a legislative/public policy news bulletin for subscribers, regarding news and information on state and local education issues.

If you have questions for TASA’s Governmental Relations Department, please contact Associate Executive Director Amy Beneski; Assistant Executive Director Ramiro Canales; or Assistant Executive Director Casey McCreary, Education Policy and Leadership Development, 512.477.6361 or 800.725.8272.

43


2008–09 n

Annual Report Texas Association of School Administrators

n

Communications Information Systems TASA makes every effort to maintain a strong and active communications program, providing information to help members command respect, spur activity, and win public support for their districts. TEXAS ASSOCI ATION OF SCHOOL ADMINI STRATO RS PROFES SIONAL JOURNA L

FALL 2008

INSIGHT

n 2008–09

Highlights

• Launched two new features of TASAnet: online conference registration and membership, streamlining access to programs and services.

A New Look for TASA Headquar ters

• Constructed an in-house podcasting studio; developed the capability to capture HD video on location; added a podcast library to the TASA Web site, enabling members to watch and listen to podcasts of interest; and instituted three new weekly podcast series: Booknotes, Intersections, and Visions. • Published TASA Daily, the association’s daily news bulletin, packed with newsclips, updates from state/education organizations, TASA and AASA news, and more; e-mailed to all members and posted on TASAnet. • Published Interchange, TASA’s monthly newsletter; e-mailed to all members and posted on TASAnet. • Published INSIGHT, TASA’s professional quarterly journal; mailed to all members and posted on TASAnet. • Published Who’s Who in Texas Public Schools, TASA’s popular annual Membership Directory, with distribution to all TASA members.

44

If you have suggestions, comments, or concerns that you would like to express to TASA’s Communications and Information Systems Department, please contact Assistant Executive Director Ann Halstead, 512.477.6361 or 800.725.8272.


Texas Association of School Administrators

Professional Development A great portion of time, energy, and talent on the part of TASA’s professional development and special services staff, as well as the advisory committees that assist them, are devoted to planning and executing effective programs designed to meet the needs of today’s education leader.

D IN

n

• Developed the Collaborative Teacher Induction Project, made possible by a grant from The Houston Endowment awarded to the Texas Leadership Center (TLC), a 501(c)(3) arm of TASA, to ensure the success of new teachers.

HER AC

Initiatives

RATIVE TE BO

RA M

Highlights COLL A

n 2008–09

Annual Report

UC TIO PROG N

n

• Provided ongoing support for the Public Education Visioning Institute, a unique opportunity for superintendents to learn from one another by challenging conventional thinking to improve leadership capacities and school systems and develop a vision for public education in the 21st century; continued use of the May 2008 publication “Creating a New Vision for Public Education in Texas.”

2008–09

• Targeted professional development to the needs of superintendents and central office administrators by offering quality seminars and institutes through the Texas Leadership Center and the Texas Curriculum Management Audit Center, aligned to TASA’s mission and goals, featuring noted experts in curriculum, assessment, and instructional improvement. • Continued partnership with the Schlechty Center to provide support in identified Texas school districts, including a customized Standard-Bearer School District Network and The Schlechty Center Texas Engagement Consortia (consortia of five or more districts). • Conducted curriculum management audits to support alignment of curriculum, instruction, and assessment in Texas schools.

General Events

xas

ation in Te

blic Educ

two-day during 12 be transdialogue it needs to facilitated dents r period in ion system and why superinten a two-yea ity, educat king. The met over sent public t participants’ thin skills, creativ tendents es, pre erin tud the sup , atti ool and erlying contras Texas sch knowledge ital, social, tions und the ulate and dig mp stim elop new assu l A group of to erfu to dev ion discover the each sess ut by pow capacities abo ded the t e gui sessions to ugh hav ges bro does not ious experts the challen et formed. Var t the present system me to ts need tha the world. concluded that studen life around s thinking everyday and rigorou es now common to forc economic

ision for Pu

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• TASA/TASB Annual Convention • Cosponsor of the Texas Assessment Conference and Texas Association of Collegiate Testing Personnel Conference • TASA/Texas A&M University Administrative Leadership Institute • TASA Midwinter Conference & Education Expo • TASA/CEFPI (Southern Region) School Facilities Workshop • UT/TASA Summer Conference on Education

4 ate s set to cre 3 A goal wa ions at all ents and conversat these The compon cs that els around p the isti lev ter rac cha 1 to develo luded in a reality concepts essary 3 must be inc system to g the vision nciples and dings nec ed s for makin A set of pri premises understan local, state, transform h ed system g dents wit Transform owned supportin to change s and provide stu help mmunityres era: l policie nce needed feduth evolved to on for ools are co tic structu yo erie cra and sch now exp and eau The en are the • bur ildr were that best the visi s l ch ree of e al herces se practiceso their of articulate ure s wsuc e schools f fut ool for sch to d realizing the ed system on • They ar it d. are inspired We envisi a transform ion in Texas. barriers to multip determine le s hib and . ion t in ily ons zat tha s da cat nd visi ship anew ing organi nce succes public edu n as learn ing, citizen • experie rmance… life, learn • Functio on perfo pared for epents advance • are pre nd interd efined • Studen ths ers are red mmunity a career pa quality nging, co ll key play le for the Roles for a rience belo tab • xpe oun han e, e acc s them t • are saf page 2 nities are mary focu signed for • Commu is the pri dence eriences de gagement responmized exp t en tem sto den sys cu n ure h ore • Stu the atio d innov mbers ass • have m ze fits all” approac capture toy an board me eatialivit unities , crent ’s pot “one si ogyery • School nolcov d uild comm hontechdis ty, e lue 1 Embrace the d b nd osi seiz e va We d a s an uri and es ope ce y, c mis sivenes brauir inq rengths ar em dards…” nment vels is devel valstue ples and Pre • mu nts and st “We learning stan viro ir tale ship at all le students…” enng The Princi ironment: tivermi all thedem ands new collab orainfo • Leader rning Env w that age di- re mece a • kno ironment rpo Digital Lea andten essential for plia pe sefully high lever ning env fro pu ored ssment are comand ncersis 1. The New minds…” m a source of te nt, asse de digital lear benefit of crea me ovi es to new mit e s pr typ and rve om ” • varied …se t, c hearts system ems ffor dards: “Th and syst at e ty nt… ions and expecbilime • Social com d th rning Stan propriate n amit tanility from oun erstab tha hange und sformat d levels ects e com 2. New Lea s for Learning: “Ap mprehensive orteant • acc ancmp work for c form re i oun social tran t refl ent per rof mo “Co tha al ying g: o p lly re essm ion pan ica ctu ept 3. Ass Learnin areas t accom n coreform hopes and stru ained exc typ on and its to l tability for tic ideals, ce and sust digital revoluti exp ed t burear eaucratic ectren 4. Accoun ” mocra r de t…Excellen t fod… aretheir cur The pecdele • from tnership is e mo res ocrity at bes Transformation: y wer l thes of inated par chude ttit ty to loca r whi ork of schools state-dom ational aftete a onsibili orytiva • factcul nd teamw sformation e present 5. Organiz and respg, a “Thice p: erv hority ate a tran th century rshid s autrob tne an lem solvin ntis, p l Paress 4 ifica tations dict early twentie d State/Locafuln sign learn of hes ksersation and s to rn ynt rce nth retu of s onv sou l Trr Cac vigorate lles fo ools…a the ninetee raack elop skills ti- 1 Pal Tr e of • schdev d related re age d and Rein mo typ s an nce nd Paralle the ool Bala ers to eng al t form a 6. A More incapable of creating cational lead ely use digit ays that in other edu • routin essed in w Enlisting y hope.” inherently boards es is the onl learning ass 1st their staffs and niti eir arn mu e th r le com s fo • hav in local as center ns ties m ize uni ce the cit e vat d the comm any time and any pla Engaging contexts ng 2nd community ir families an , commit) nt—learni • see the of caring evelopme (Grassroots d modeling dults ing and d idance an er a s nce the gu rs and oth cy advisor • experie ent teache aging poli pet om 3rd Eng ted and c ct produc

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continued on next page 45


2008–09 n

Annual Report

n Executive

Development

Texas Association of School Administrators

n

• TASA First-time Superintendents’ Academy (Four Sessions) • Aspiring Superintendents’ Academy (followed by Web-based connections and ongoing virtual community) • Learning for Leadership: A Mentoring Program for Texas Superintendents • Budget Boot Camp n Institutes

and Seminars

• Leading in the 21st Century: Using Quality Questioning to Foster Student and Adult Inquiry • Questioning FOR Learning: Improving the Thinking and Achievement of ALL Students (three-day training of trainers) • Levels and I and II Curriculum Management Audit Training • Mentoring the Reflective Principal (Four-Part Series) • Improved Questioning, Training of Trainers • Leading Professional Development in Classroom Assessment FOR Learning • Building a Balanced Assessment System • Joel Barker’s Implications Wheel Certification • Texas Curriculum Management Audit Center— offered in cooperation with Curriculum Management Systems, Inc., focused specifically in optimizing audit services for Texas school districts in a cost-effective manner; conducted 3 curriculum management audits (Alief, Bryan, Spring ISDs); and offered customized Downey Walk-Through seminars and other trainings for districts, thus saving the high costs of travel for district leaders and developing leadership capacity within districts. n Customized

Services

• The Downey Three-Minute Walk-Through (Conducted 20—ESC Region 14 and Abilene, Burkburnett, Grand Prairie, Hurst-Euless-Bedford, North East, Silsbee, Ysleta ISDs) • Level I Curriculum Management Training (Conducted 4—Clear Creek, Frisco, Irving, Red Oak ISDs) • Level II Curriculum Management Training (Conducted 1—Clear Creek ISD) • SchoolView: Gathering Trend Data on Curricular and Instructional Classroom Practices (Conducted 2—Ector County, Lewisville ISDs ) • Taking the Mystery Out of Tests and Textbook Alignment Strategies (Conducted 1—Lewisville ISD) n Texas

Leadership Center—a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization supported by TASA; provides grant

services and conducts seminars to strengthen the leadership of Texas schools.

If you have questions regarding activities of the Texas Curriculum Audit Center, Texas Leadership Center, or Professional Learning, please contact TASA Associate Executive Director Susan Holley, Instructional Support and Leadership Development; for questions regarding general events or executive development, please contact TASA Associate Executive Director Paul L. Whitton, Jr., Administrative Services, 512.477.6361 or 800.725.8272. 46


Texas Association of School Administrators

Administrative Services The Administrative Services Department monitors current research, trends, and developments in education and provides professional assistance and support to TASA members on matters related to school leadership and management. n 2008–09

Highlights

n

• Continued the Administrator’s Resource Center (newly renamed Research Connection) in partnership with Educational Research Service (ERS), offering publications and resources designed to keep school district leadership teams alert and highly informed.

Annual Report n

• Administered TASA’s Legal Support Program, which offers two hours of legal consultation related to the superintendent’s employment contract, superintendent/board relations, and other topics related to professional duties and employment rights (provided through TASA by General Counsel Neal W. Adams, Adams, Lynch & Loftin, P.C.).

2008–09

• Offered superintendent mentoring services to 74 new superintendents. • Conducted 13 facility planning studies, designed to assist school districts in addressing requirements related to space, educational programming, and long-range planning —9 standard studies (Borden County, Carthage, Cushing, Grand Saline, Hardin, La Feria, Memphis, San Saba, Wall ISDs); 2 basic studies (Driscoll, Murchison ISDs), and 2 enrollment studies (Sharyland,Ysleta ISDs) • Planned and coordinated or co-directed major statewide conferences and executive development programs (See listing under Professional Development). • Offered field services to statewide membership through a team of member services representatives. • Assisted in liaison activities with the American Association of School Administrators, the Texas Association of School Boards, and other professional associations and state agencies. • Represented the association at national, state, regional, and local meetings.

If you have questions regarding activities of the Administrative Services Department, please contact Associate Executive Director Paul L. Whitton, Jr., 512.477.6361 or 800.725.8272.

47


2008–09 Annual Report

n

Awards TASA School Board Awards

Texas Association of School Administrators

n

TASA named Frisco ISD Board of Trustees (Region 10) as the Outstanding School Board of Texas for 2008. (Weatherford ISD won the award for 2009). Also honored as 2008 Texas Honor School Boards were Bellville ISD (Region 6), Grapevine-Colleyville ISD (Region 11), Pasadena ISD (Region 4), and Rio Grande City CISD (Region 1). TASA created the School Board Awards competition in 1971 to recognize those school boards that demonstrate outstanding service to the children of Texas.

ALI Awards n Golden

Deeds Award

Bill McKinney, Executive Director, ESC Region 4, was named recipient of the 2008 Golden Deeds Award, presented by Texas A&M University at its annual Administrative Leadership Conference in November 2008 (David Thompson III, partner, Thompson and Horton LLP, was recipient of the award for 2009.) The Golden Deeds Award honors an individual who has made significant contributions to improving the educational system to enrich the lives of all Texas school students. The recipient is nominated through a statewide committee composed of Texas school leaders. n John

Hoyle Award for Educational Leadership

Ted Moore, superintendent, Lovejoy ISD, was selected to receive the 2008 John Hoyle Award for Educational Leadership (Jeffrey M. Hanks, superintendent, Burnet CISD, was recipient of the award for 2009). The John Hoyle Award recognizes a practicing administrator who is making a difference in the lives of youth for the betterment of all society.

Honorary Life Twenty-Seven educators received Honorary Life Memberships in January 2009. Honorary Life Membership is extended to individual members, upon approval of the Executive Committee, who are in good standing at the time of retirement, have 10 or more years of TASA membership, and have completed 25 years of active service in the education profession. Nominations for Honorary Life Membership are accepted and reviewed annually.

48


Texas Association of School Administrators

TASA Corporate Partner Program In 2008–09, TASA received support from 39 corporate partners, mutually benefiting the association and the corporate partner. TASA’s Corporate Partner Program offers a wide array of advertising, sponsorship, and exhibitor opportunities for businesses interested in supporting the association and expanding their recognition and visibility in Texas. Each level of the program is designed to offer our partners quality exposure to association members. Partners at the President’s Circle and Platinum levels also have the option of customizing special events and opportunities. A listing of the various levels and opportunities for Corporate Partners is available online at www.tasanet.org.

Corporate Partners

n

n 2008–09

Pearson

Horace Mann

Penn Foster

Linebarger Goggan Blair & Sampson, LLP

SHW Group

SureScore

Tango Software

TCG Consulting, LP The Learning Together Company

Platinum

Bronze

Cisco CompassLearning

Agile Mind

CTB McGraw-Hill—The GrowNetwork

Alton Lynch Associates

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Learning Technology

Cambridge Strategic Services

PBK Scholastic Scientific Learning TCPN The Princeton Review Wireless Generation

Gold Health Matters

2008–09

Balfour

n

Apple

Indeco Sales, Inc./MACO Mfg.

Annual Report

Silver

President’s Circle

First Southwest Company Laying The Foundation, Inc. (“LTF”) Learning Through Sports LenSec OdysseyWare Petermann Ltd. Sodexo The College Board VALIC Vantage Learning

LifeTrack Services, Inc. Renaissance Learning The Dannon Institute

If you have questions regarding the association’s Corporate Partner Program, please contact TASA Executive Director Johnny Veselka or Director of Special Services Pat Johnston, 512.477.6361 or 800.725.8272. 49


2008–09 Annual Report

n

TASA Staff 2009-2010

Texas Association of School Administrators

n

Corporate Headquarters Staff Johnny L. Veselka Amy Beneski Susan Holley Paul L. Whitton, Jr.

Executive Director (8/5/74) Associate Executive Director, Governmental Relations (5/6/02) Associate Executive Director, Instructional Support and Leadership Development (5/1/07) Associate Executive Director, Administrative Services (2/1/01)

Ramiro Canales Ann M. Halstead Casey McCreary Pat Johnston Keith Rutledge

Assistant Executive Director, Governmental Relations (1/10/05) Assistant Executive Director, Communications & Information Systems (11/17/86) Assistant Executive Director, Education Policy and Leadership Development (4/16/07) Director, Special Services (1/4/70) Director, Digital Media & Technology Services (11/5/08)

Denise Biggs Denise Burns Christina Cabrera Maria Cruz Kara Hamann Anne Harpe Karen Limb Mark Pyeatt Albert Rivas Marita Rogers Brettany Zirkle

Administrative Secretary II, Governmental Relations (5/28/02) Accounting Clerk (6/9/08) Executive Assistant, Executive Director’s Office (5/15/08) Administrative Secretary II, Administrative Services (9/26/07) Controller (8/5/08) Graphics Coordinator (5/29/07) Editorial Coordinator (3/13/91) Accountant, Registration Services (3/1/00) Webmaster (1/1/01) Receptionist (9/1/88) Manager, Membership & Data Services (1/1/01) *Dates in parentheses indicate employment date

Member Services Representatives Larry Coffman Stephanie Cravens Roy Dodds Terry Harlow Jimmy Partin M. Roel Peña

Regions 9, 16, and 17 Regions 3, 4, 5, and 6 Regions 12, 14, 15, and 18 Regions 8, 10, 11, and 13 Region 7 Regions 1, 2, 19, and 20

Consultant Jerry Gideon

50

Facility Planning


PASeries

®

PowerSchool Premier

®

Pearson Inform™

NovaNET

®

Scott Foresman SIOP Chancery SMS ®

®

Prentice Hall

Waterford Early Learning

SuccessMaker Enterprise ®

The solutions you value. The names you trust.


Presorted Standard U.S. Postage PAID Austin, TX Permit No. 1941

406 East 11th Street Austin, TX 78701-2617

Save the Date!

First General Session Keynote Address: Grown Up Digital

TASA Midwinter Conference

Don Tapscott, Chairman of nGenera Insight, Adjunct Professor of Management at Joseph L. Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto, Author of Grown Up Digital, and Co-Author of Wikinomics

Austin Convention Center, January 24–27, 2010

photo courtesy Austin Convention Center

n Get the information you need from

presenters who speak your language— budget and finance, curriculum and instruction, high school reform, college readiness, facilities planning, technology, assessment, and more! n Enjoy networking opportunities that

create a bonanza for administrators looking for colleagues who want to hash out problems and share ideas and solutions

The Net Generation has arrived. The new digital media, particularly the Internet, are the heart of a new youth culture and a new generation who, in profound and fundamental ways, learn, work, play, communicate, shop, and create communities very differently than their parents. There is no issue more important to strategists, marketers, business leaders, educators, lawmakers, and parents than understanding this new generation.

n Choose from two and one-half days of

events geared solely to your team and the issues you deal with every day

Register online at www.tasanet.org

Texas Association of School Administrators

INSIGHT—Winter 2009  
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