In the wake of changes made to the state employee retirement system, several MASSP members have been inquiring about the fate of the still ongoing school employee three percent retirement contribution. The bottom line is that the case involving state employees’ retirement contributions is separate and apart from that for school employees.
On Wednesday, lawmakers took testimony on the feasibility of moving to more frequent student counts. Particularly in light of recent and ongoing changes to charter and cyber school laws, lawmakers are looking to get a more accurate picture of the numbers of students in a given district.
During the hearing, representatives from the MDE testified that more frequent counts are possible given the current state system. One official suggested that as many as eleven pupils counts per year could be conducted to correspond to the eleven state aid payments made to schools.
House Ed Committee members this past week heard testimony on five bills – meaning no votes were taken. Four of the bills heard would revise teacher certification requirements. The fifth is aimed at reforming the seat time waiver process. Those bills were:
- HB 4645 & 5013 – plans to eliminate provisional teaching certificates and continuing education requirements for teacher certification. Instead, under the bills, teachers would be granted a permanent teaching certificate with no requirement for continuing education in order to maintain it.
Last summer at EdCon many of you had the opportunity to hear Tim Elmore speak about working with our students through the lens of Generation IY. His words of advice for communicating and motivating the current generation of students was inspiring. Tim continues to spread the message with very simple and practical tips for parents and those who work with youth on a daily basis.
This past week I visited Principal Jody McKean at Dewitt High School as his 9th grade students were participating in the MASSP/Turning Technologies Explore Clicker Pilot. David Chizar and Tina Rooks from Turning Technologies and Bruce Umpstead from the MDE were also on site to get feedback from Jody, his students and his staff on the process. While visiting Dewitt, we were able to get a glimpse of a couple of classrooms, who were at different points of the planning and preparation process.