DESE Updates

DESE Update: August 9th, 2019

1. Arts Education Ambassadors: The Department is pleased to announce the launch of an Arts​ Education Ambassadors Program for the 2019-20 school year.​ Arts Education Ambassadors have an exciting opportunity to work as​ a regional arts team, connect with other arts educators, offer​ professional development opportunities with supporting resources,​ and serve as point people for the 2019 Arts Curriculum Framework.​ Applications are due August 16. Anyone with questions can email Arts Content Support Lead Dawn Benski. Picture of the Week On July 25, Commissioner Riley visited the Summer Institute for Literacy Leadership at Winter Hill Community Innovation School in Somerville. The program integrated coursework and a practicum designed to support the development of structured literacy practices.

DESE Update: August 2nd, 2019

1. FY20 Budget Signed: On July 31, Governor Baker signed the Fiscal Year 2020 budget, a $43.321 billion plan with $5.2 billion for Chapter 70 education aid. Every school district will receive at least $30 in additional aid per student. The budget includes foundation budget rate increases in four areas identified by the Foundation Budget Review Commission: benefits and fixed charges, special education, English learners, and economically disadvantaged students. More information, including summary charts, a white paper, and a spreadsheet showing the calculations for each municipality and district, are available through DESE’s finance web page. Picture of the Week: On July 29, Commissioner Riley visited the 21st Century Community Learning Centers Summer Program at Warren Community Elementary School in Warren, part of the... More

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DESE Update: July 26th, 2019

1. Deeper Learning Reminder: Deeper learning – learning that involves mastery, identity, and creativity (see "In Search of Deeper Learning" by Jal Mehta and Sarah Fine) – was a major focus at Kairos, and it is central to the plans Commissioner Riley outlined in “Our Way Forward,” his recent report to the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education. This fall, DESE will release the application for the Kaleidoscope Collective for Learning pilot program, giving individual schools and entire districts the opportunity to apply to rethink classroom instruction around deeper learning. We encourage school and district leaders who would like to join the pilot program to indicate their interest online. Picture of the Week: On July 19, Commissioner Riley visited the summer learning programs at Thompson Island Outward Bound, which... More

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DESE Update: July 19th, 2019

1. Note about July Local Education Aid Payments: Due to the delay in the passage of the final FY20 state budget, the Department of Revenue has announced that it will make the July cherry sheet payments and assessments based on the amounts in the Governor’s House 1 budget proposal submitted in January. This affects Chapter 70 aid as well as charter tuition payments and reimbursements. Charter school amounts, in particular, may be significantly higher or lower when the final budget is enacted, so districts and charter schools are cautioned not to rely on the July payments as they finalize their district and school spending plans. As soon as there is a final state budget, DESE will provide districts with final Chapter... More

DESE Update: July 12th, 2019

1. Deeper Learning and the Kaleidoscope Collective for Learning Pilot Program: Deeper learning – learning that is interactive, relevant, and collaborative – was a major focus at Kairos, and it is central to the plans Commissioner Riley outlined in “Our Way Forward,” his recent report to the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education. This fall, DESE will release the application for the Kaleidoscope Collective for Learning pilot program, giving individual schools and entire districts the opportunity to apply to rethink classroom instruction around deeper learning. We encourage school and district leaders who would like to join the pilot program to indicate their interest online. Picture of the Week: Students from the Young Queens and Kings Scholar Program at Edison K-8 School in Boston (pictured here with their principal... More

DESE Update: June 21st, 2019

1. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet: The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education will meet from 9:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. June 25 at Rumney Marsh Academy, 140 American Legion Highway, Revere. The agenda is posted online, and the meeting will be streamed online at https://livestream.com/accounts/22459134. Picture of the Week On June 20, DESE honored 18 award-winning teachers in a ceremony at the State House. Left-right, back row: Teacher of the Year semifinalist Jennifer Ryan; Michael Neagle, Massachusetts History Teacher of the Year and Massachusetts Teacher of the Year semifinalist; Teacher of the Year semifinalist Dominique D. Gilmer; Milken Award winner Jennifer Gordon; Teacher of the Year semifinalists Rachel R.M. Crawford, Roxann Grover, Eamon Cunningham, and Chaitra McCarty Byrd; Presidential... More

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DESE Update: June 7th, 2019

1. Dual Language Program Training: The Department is sponsoring two identical two-day trainings for district and school leaders who are considering establishing a dual language program in their district or school.  The first training will be June 24 and 25 at Bridgewater State University, and the second will June 26 and 27 at Hudson High School. Registration is open online at the links above. Anyone with questions can email Phyllis Hardy, executive director of the Multistate Association for Bilingual Education, Northeast at phyllishardy@mabene.org using the subject line “Implementing DLE District Leadership Training”. Picture of the Week: On June 7, DESE recognized 57 Schools of Recognition at the State House. Here, Commissioner Riley presents the team from Winship Elementary in Boston with their certificate. 3. Reminder... More

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DESE Update: May 5th, 2019

1. Free Two-Day MTSS Leadership Institute: The Department will sponsor a FREE Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) Leadership Institute for district and school level administrators. This opportunity is being developed in response to administrators’ requests for additional guidance, professional development, tools, and resources to help them design, implement, and lead cohesive tiered systems of support. The Leadership Institute will complement the work being supported through DESE’s six Multi-Tiered Systems of Support Academies, which focus specifically on Inclusive Tier 1 instruction, tiered literacy, tiered math, Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS), Systemic Student Support (S3), and social and emotional learning/mental health. (Links to applications and more information about the academies are available online). Please note that enrollment in one of the Academies... More

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DESE UPDATE: April 26th, 2019

1. Board of Elementary and Secondary Education Meeting: The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education met on April 23 at Newton North High School. The Board heard a report from the State Student Advisory Council, discussed the FY 2020 education budget proposal from House Ways and Means Committee, and heard an update on the Massachusetts Individualized Education Program (IEP) Improvement Project. A video of the meeting is available online at https://livestream.com/accounts/22459134. Picture of the Week: Educators from the Jiangsu province of China visited Essex North Shore Agricultural & Technical School in Danvers during the first week in April to learn about career technical education. The group also visited Madison Park Technical Vocational High School in Boston and Upper Cape Cod Regional Technical School in... More

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