Jul. 17, 2014

Federal funds available for school counseling programs
Secretary of Education Arne Duncan recently sent a letter to chief state school officers and local education agencies advising them to use their federal investments wisely. The letter included guidance on federal funds available for school counseling professional development and services.

Read the letter and see the list of federal programs that can be used for comprehensive school counseling services and professional development. Please share this information with your building and district-level supervisors.

Amanda Fitzgerald
Director of Public Policy
American School Counselor AssociationMore

NYSSCA Awards Program
NYSSCA is accepting nominees for awards to be presented at our annual conference to be held on Oct. 31-Nov. 1, 2014. This year's conference theme is "School Counselors: Informed, Accountable, Impactful" and complete Conference Information is available online at www.nyssca.org.

NYSSCA presents awards in the following areas:

This year, all award nominations will be submitted online here. For School Counselor of the Year nominees, click on "Apply Now." For the Leadership Grant, Career Achievement and Outstanding Program Awards, click on "Other Awards" and then follow the instructions to make an online nomination or application. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Ron Smith.

Nominations are due Oct. 1. More

NYSSCA 2014 Conference news registration now open!
Registration forms, exhibitor information and hotel registrations. NYSSCA Conference 2014. Oct. 31-Nov. 1, 2014. Hilton Albany. "School Counselors: Informed, Accountable, Impactful" call for programs form is available on the conference page of our website at www.nyssca.org.

Conference registration is now open. Online registration available here. "Paper" registration form is here.

Hotel reservations are to be made directly through the Albany Hilton and that info follows here: Make room reservations directly with the Albany Hilton 1-800-HILTONS (445-8667) or www.hiltonalbany.com. Use conference code 1NYSSC for the conference room rate.More

ASCA revised student standards-public comment period open
The ASCA Mindsets and Behaviors for Student Success: K-12 College and Career Readiness for Every Student is a revision of the 2004 ASCA Student Standards. After a two-year revision process, the new standards are now being released, and we want to hear your ideas and comments about the new version. Download the updated standards and provide your comments.More

Schools work to focus incoming college students
The Associated Press via ABC News
The excitement of acceptance into that dream college has passed. The first day of classes is still weeks away. But the resources provided by high school teachers and computer labs are no longer available for recent graduates. Education researchers and academic counselors call it "summer melt," the precarious time when some college-bound students fall through the cracks, at risk of abandoning their higher education plans entirely. Studies show that first-generation college students and those from low-income families are particularly vulnerable.More

5 anti-bully apps you should know about
eSchool News
No matter what generation you're from, it's evident that bullying has consistently played a role in the educational system. In movies, it's usually the stereotypical intimidating character going for children's lunch money, or in some cases, it's the popular kids bullying less-popular students. But for today's generation, bullies have become more of an unstoppable obstacle for students. While mobile phones have improved communication, they also have heightened the lengths of what being bullied can entail.More

Connecting school spending and student achievement
The Washington Post
In the roiling national debate about the best ways to improve public education, one aspect gets scant attention: the relationship between the tax dollars school systems spend and academic results. In a report, the left-leaning Center for American Progress looks at how much "bang for the buck" taxpayers are getting from public schools. Ulrich Boser, who wrote the report, analyzed budgets of 7,000 school districts across about 40 states — which enroll about about 80 percent of U.S. public school students — and found some surprising results.More

How to read education data without jumping to conclusions
The Atlantic
Education has entered the era of Big Data. The Internet is teeming with stories touting the latest groundbreaking studies on the science of learning and pedagogy. Education journalists are in a race to report these findings as they search for the magic formula that will save America's schools. But while most of this research is methodologically solid, not all of it is ready for immediate deployment in the classroom.More

Parents, education advocates plan to defend teacher tenure against lawsuit filed by parents' reform group
New York Daily News
About 50 parents and education advocates plan to defend teacher tenure in court alongside the city and state, arguing that job protections ensure quality classrooms. Labor attorney Arthur Schwartz said he expects to file a motion in Staten Island Supreme Court within two weeks claiming his clients should be named as co-defendants of the city and state's Education Departments, which were sued two weeks ago by the New York City Parents Union for failing to provide quality education to all kids.More

Report urges more active state role in Common Core
The move to local control under the state's new funding and accountability system has given school districts much leeway in adopting the Common Core State Standards, the challenging math and English language arts standards that California and 41 other states and Washington, D.C., have adopted. And that flexibility, concludes a new report by researchers from Stanford University's Graduate School of Education, has the potential to create disparities in implementation the state should reduce.More

Where are the nation's 'most productive' school districts?
Education Week
Is your school district spending its likely tight budget on the right things? New reports suggest many aren't. Three reports by the Center for American Progress, a progressive think tank, examine whether districts are properly targeting their budgets to areas that will most effectively address academic success for students. The reports are a follow-up to a similar assessment the group completed in 2011.More

US Education Department offers tips to districts, states on social media use
Education Week
While most states and districts are either using or planning to use Twitter and Facebook, developing the capacity to use those social media platforms effectively — and to expand their presence on newer platforms — remains a challenge, according to research and related documents recently released by the U.S. Department of Education. In May, the department's Reform Support Network, which works to support states and districts that have won grants as part of the federal Race to the Top program, released the findings of a survey and follow-up research involving 23 states and 11 districts.More

Activists take teacher tenure battle to more states
U.S. News & World Report
Parents, students and legislators are challenging teacher tenure laws in an increasing number of states, as the influence of a landmark decision in California begins to ripple throughout the country. Groups are turning their attention to filing copycat lawsuits after the Vergara v. California ruling reignited tenure debates in states including New York, Connecticut and New Jersey. "This is unprecedented," says William Koski, a professor of education and law at Stanford University. "It is relatively unusual for courts to get involved in the nitty-gritty of any educational policies, much less teacher employment rules like this."More