A-F Letter Grades for 2016-17 finalized by April 2018

The Arizona Department of Education is currently updating its Connect portal, which should be done by the end of this month. At that time, schools will be able to go online and check that their data is correct and contact ADE if not. 2016-17 Letter Grades will be finalized by the end of April.

Staff will also be reviewing proposed revisions to the A-F formula for 2017-18 during March and April board meetings and approve the final plan on May 21. At the end of April, schools that serve grade 12 will be able to submit their Career and College Readiness Indicator data. In June, all schools will be able to go online to verify if their data is correct in the ADE Connect portal. Schools will have until June 30 to check data and resolve any issues. The board will set cut scores during the August meeting and A-F Letter Grade appeals will be addressed throughout September.

Join us for Lobby Day, March 19

We invited you to join us for this year’s Lobby Day on March 19. Members will have an opportunity to come down to the capitol and lobby their legislators directly on adequate and equitable funding, improving student outcomes, and other issues of importance to locally elected school boards. The event will begin with an advocacy workshop in the Historic Senate Chambers at 9 a.m. After a break for lunch, members will have the chance to watch the House/Senate in action as they debate bills on the floor. Lastly, for those who want to stay, the House Education will be meeting at 2 pm. There is no is charge for this event. Click to view agenda and register.

We must "show up" as board members

By Steven Chapman, Treasurer, ASBA Board of Directors

Something I often think about is, “decisions are made by those who show up.” A quote attributed to a few people including fictional characters, but important nonetheless. Many of you have already taken a step towards “showing up” by running for Governing Board for your local schools, or serving as a member of your PTA group, and serving in other positions in your community.

How can we do more? As members of our local Governing Board we have an opportunity to shape the direction of our association, and through that our schools and our communities. Continuing at our Summer Leadership Institute we can develop the traits that we need individually and collectively set the direction our schools need.

Opportunities are always arising with ASBA through conferences and workshops. Leading the nation in important conversations, we will be hosting our Equity Event this March 22nd-23rd. Sometimes the conversations we have to have as leaders are not easy, but as long as we have them together we can make progress.

What can we do locally? Outside of ASBA we are all elected officials with ties to our community just as strong as our legislators, if not stronger. Some of the issues we deal with at the state and federal level may seem overwhelming at times, but if we truly leveraged every bit of our network we could begin to see the difference for the students in our classrooms right now.

Utilizing every tool available to us will make us better leaders, as well as better participants. We need to engage with our communities and other elected leaders though social media, community websites and even hosting or participating in community forums.

Professional development is a responsibility we all share, and we can do it with our fellow members in a forum that will allow our voices to be heard and our actions to collectively create change. Your governing board and staff can only fully serve, if you are fully informed and engaged. If you have any questions, suggestions or thoughts to share please reach out to me or any of your other ASBA board representatives. Remember, those who show up decided the future for us, our students and staff.

Are you a candidate for ASBA's Leadership Lab?

Are you a school board member who is curious, reflective, ambitious, open, flexible, committed to positive change, and, above all, believe the success of public education is the cornerstone for building Arizona’s future? If so, we encourage you to apply for ASBA’s Leadership Lab.

The Leadership Lab is an intensive, highly interactive, relevant and authentic group learning experience designed to result in outcomes tailored to each participant’s own goals. Every Leadership Lab graduate will emerge with an actionable Leadership Growth Plan to guide their current and future service, leadership and impact. Each Learning Lab session includes issue education, skill-building, and self-work and personal reflection.

Each Learning Lab session will be a full day on Friday (9 a.m. – 4 p.m.), with an optional group dinner, and a half-day Saturday (9 a.m. – 1 p.m.). Participants must attend all sessions to graduate. Sessions will take place in September 2018, November 2018, January 2019, May 2019 and June 2019.

The cost of this yearlong, 50 CEU program, including all curricular materials, plus snacks and lunch each day, is $950 per person. Participants are responsible for travel and lodging costs (at a reduced ASBA rate), as well as optional Friday night dinners.

Applications will be available online beginning March 12 and due by April 6, 2018. For any questions or additional information, please contact Julie Bacon, ASBA’s Leadership Development Specialist.

Equity Event Video

Dr. Kevin Kumashiro shares preview of his keynote presentation for Equity Event! See what he has to say and don’t miss the Equity Event, March 22-23. Register here.

Two FREE recordings from ASBA's highest attended breakout sessions

ASBA encourages members to attend events that provide quality and vital professional development opportunities to help you grow as a school board member. We encourage you to click and listen to two free recordings of the highest attended breakout sessions during the Annual Conference.

Developing and Supporting the Next Generation of Superintendents

A Shared Education Road Map for Arizona Aligning District Plans to the Arizona Education Progress Meter

2017 Auditor General Classroom Spending Report Regraphed

Each year, per state statute, the Arizona Auditor General produces a report on school district classroom spending.

This year’s report continues to emphasize that despite continuous severe budget cuts, our public education leaders remain focused on allocating more dollars to support students in classrooms.

Let’s look at what the data in the report shows.

In the combined services of instruction, student support services and instructional staff support, school districts continue to keep funding at a stable level despite huge cuts to their budgets. In the Auditor General Report for Fiscal Year 2017, the percentage for instruction, student support services and instructional staff support was 67.7 percent compared to the 68.4 percent in the report in Fiscal Year 2001, the first time the Auditor General completed this type of study. This is a small percentage reduction when we consider the significant cuts to school district funding over this period, including a decade of cuts to capital funding.

The largest increases in spending since 2001:

    • Student Support Services: $202 per pupil – increases in this category are largely driven by increases in special education expenditures
    • Instructional Staff Support: $148 per pupil – increases in this category are due to higher turnover of teachers and increased training demands
    • Transportation: $113 per pupil – increases in this category are driven by special education expenditures as well as an aging fleet of vehicles

    We continue to stand by the fact that the “dollars in the classroom” measure is an outmoded way of benchmarking how Arizona supports student success. The commonly accepted definition of “classroom spending” by the Governor, Legislature and public education leaders clearly indicates what it takes to support a classroom. The extremely narrow definition that the Auditor General’s Office continues to use does not.

    It does not describe effective use of dollars dedicated to teaching, learning and graduating every student attending a public school in Arizona, regardless of zip code or socioeconomics status.

    Click here to view the 2017 Auditor General Report.

And the winner is...ASBA's GR team reports the Oscars!

Tune in on Fridays, 3 p.m. for Facebook Live advocacy updates, and remember to look for the edited video on Mondays to find out where your GR Team will be reporting from next!

ASBA Events

The Equity Event, March 22-23

Register now!

Click to see are keynote speakers, learn about taking your district’s equity pulse PLUS rotate through four sessions designed to build practical knowledge and skills for equity action and impact at the board level.

Summer Leadership Institute, June 7-9

Conference and hotel registration opens Monday, April 2, 2018. We continue our summer tradition by traveling to northern Arizona at Little America Hotel in Flagstaff.

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