Nov. 20, 2014

NYSSCA Leaders attend San Diego White House Convening
NYSSCA's President and President-Elect Gloria Jean and Barbara Donnellan, joined the New York Team at the White House Convening held at San Diego State University on Nov. 17-18, 2014, This was the second gathering of representatives from around the country to discuss and develop opportunities for improved College and Career Readiness programming in support of Michelle Obama's "Reach Higher" initiative. Thirty-seven states were represented by their school counseling associations, college access programs and counselor educators. Each state team is working on the development of a targeted initiative specific for their State. Other NY team members include Stuart Chen-Hayes (CUNY Lehman College), Carol Dahir (NYIT), Lois Herrera (NYS-DOE), Cynthia Walley (Hunter College), Crystal Byndloss (MDRC), Casey Pedrick (Stuyvesant HS, NYC), Felipe Ayala (CACNY), Kara Leva (Rowan College), Quinton Lampkin (I Have A Dream Foundation), Jim Lukach & Tim Conway (NJSCA), Melissa Luke (Syracuse University), and Judi Lorimer & Deborah Fuller (Options Center)

Participants heard from Michelle Obama and Arne Duncan via video and experts in the field such as Trish Hatch & Laura Owen (SDSU), Eric Waldo (Reach Higher, Office of the First Lady), Carolyn Stone (University of North Florida), Joyce Brown (Center for College and Career Readiness), Patricia Martin (formerly with NOSCA), Greg Darnieder (US Dept of Education, College Access Initiative), Jill Cook (ASCA), Carol Bobby (CACREP), Kim Cook (National College Access Network), David Hawkins (NACAC), Richard Yep (ACA) and many more. Break out sessions provided time for State teams to work on establishing their targeted efforts and develop plans to continue these efforts as a follow-up to this convening.

NYSSCA is pleased to participate on the NY team and at this convening, where the enthusiasm and collaboration on behalf of students around the country who need our support to achieve their postgraduate dreams has been inspiring! For more information and to follow the progress of this initiative, visit the SDSU/Reach Higher website at: http://go.sdsu.edu/education/csp/schoolcounseling.aspx.


Field memo on using Where Are They Now? Reports for local program review and planning Ken Wagner, NYSED Deputy Commissioner
As part of its ongoing review of college readiness and postsecondary outcomes, the Board of Regents discussed at its November meeting the postsecondary enrollment of New York's students in two- and four-year colleges and universities. Following this discussion, the presentation made to the Board and data files that provide postsecondary enrollment percentages within one year of the fourth year of high school for the 2006, 2007, and 2008 cohorts of each of our public high schools and districts were posted at http://www.p12.nysed.gov/irs/pressRelease/20141117/home.html.More

Important dates
Review the Linked New York State Math, ELA and Science testing dates for the 2014-2015 school year. Click here.

Check out the Linked National Educational and Health Awareness dates for 2014-2015. Click here. More

New York City schools dumping $95 million computer system for tracking student data
New York Daily News
A controversial $95 million computer system that tracks and distributes student scores and other data is headed for the scrap heap, the Daily News has learned. The Achievement Reporting and Innovation System was implemented by the Education Department in 2007. It's one of the city's biggest computer systems, with records on more than 1 million current and former students. But it has been blasted by critics for being clunky and slow. Former schools Chancellor Joel Klein, who oversaw the creation of ARIS, has also drawn fire for taking millions to maintain the system with his company Amplify.More

3 ways parents can help colleges help their kids' school counselors
The Huffington Post
It's rare that a sweeping movement in the world of college admissions can fly under the radar screen of public consciousness, but that seems to be what's happening with the two-week old High School Counselor Challenge. For all the buzz among admission deans and school counselors, the challenge really hasn't caught the attention of many outside the profession. Not yet, at least.More

Schools try shuffling schedules for success
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
For years, schools have grappled with how to help the most struggling pupils catch up to their classmates. In many cases, holding them back to repeat a grade hasn't worked. Neither has social promotion — allowing children to move to the next grade with their classmates, where they may fall further behind. So what would it take to get a pupil the needed help without the stigma of repeating a grade? Two schools in the Pattonville School District in Missouri are shaking up schedules and class structures in an effort to find out.More

Air pollution linked to rising ADHD cases
The Weather Channel
Air pollution might be linked to increasing cases of ADHD in children, a study of New York City women and children found. Exposure to pollution before birth might be the key, researchers from Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health found, after a look at prenatal levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, a component of air pollution, and ADHD symptoms in children later in life. Mothers exposed to high levels of PAH during pregnancy had five times the odds of symptoms that characterize inattentive ADHD in their kids at age 9. The study is the first to examine prenatal PAH exposure and behavior in children over time. Although it shows a potential link between the two factors, it does not demonstrate that air pollution exposure causes ADHD.More

Feds: Schools must offer communication supports
Disability Scoop
The Obama administration is reminding schools of their wide-ranging responsibilities to students with disabilities who struggle with speech and other communication difficulties. In a recently issued guidance document, federal officials said the nation's public schools have obligations under three separate laws to "ensure that communication with students with hearing, vision and speech disabilities is as effective as communication with all other students." While requirements under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act vary, schools must comply with all three laws to meet individual needs.More

How bullying may physically alter our developing brains
By: Dorothy L. Tengler
It's no mystery that the brain develops before birth and continues throughout adulthood. But we may not have considered that brain development is analogous to building a house: laying the foundation, framing the rooms and installing electrical wiring. Obviously, laying a solid foundation builds a strong brain structure, while a weak foundation creates a faulty structure. At birth, we are born with billions of neurons, the same number as adults. These specialized cells have to be connected or "wired" to form circuits to control different functions from basic to biological ones.More

Education Department drops new NCLB waiver guidance
U.S. News & World Report
The Department of Education is letting states apply to renew their waivers from No Child Left Behind, President George W. Bush's landmark education reform law, for three and in some cases four more years, but they'll have to do more to show they're turning around low-performing schools and closing student achievement gaps.More

Curiosity in young learners is the foundation of academic success
Kids begin building the foundations for academic learning at an early age. In her Atlantic article, Alexandra Ossola explores how preschool children are beginning to make meaning out of the world around them, which translates into the ability down the line to grasp complicated math and science concepts.More

How schools are bringing mobile under control
District Administration Magazine
Whether devices are tablets or laptops, or owned by the school or the student, they all require IT support. Recent support developments include bundling digital learning applications and the physical device with the cost of mobile device management software. Apple, meanwhile, has made changes that make it easier to automate control of iPads.More

Making school about connection
Traditionally, schools have not promoted human-centered relationships. With the exception of the primary years, students are expected to rush from class to class, searching for meaning in short periods of time allotted with each of their teachers. In this model, each course is meant to pack in as much content as possible while pausing only for exams which are supposed to determine how much a student "knows."More