This week marks the halfway point for 2021, and even though it is the heart of summer, we are busy wrapping up our Year 2 state projects and preparing for new Year 3 projects for the fall.
As part of that preparation, the R1CC is pleased to announce that Ellen Cushing is transitioning from Co-Director to now serving as the center’s Director and Jessica Giffin will serve as the center’s Deputy Director.
Without further ado, here’s our biweekly round-up of events and resources to support all the good work underway in your states.
- IDRA Ed Policy Summer Camp Series: Emergent Bilingual Students and Federal Relief Fund on Thursday, July 15th from 6:00pm to 7:00pm CDT , IDRA, which operates IDRA EAC-South (EAC Region II), will host a webinar to share how school districts and states can use federal relief funds to support bilingual education programs, family and student engagement, and emergent bilingual learners. To register for this webinar, click here.
- Join the Summer Learning and Enrichment Collaborative on Thursday, July 22nd from 3:00pm to 5:00pm EDT for a working session focused on ways to engage assets in local communities to support summer learning and enrichment, including community schools as a model for supporting equitable and comprehensive learning opportunities, providing innovative examples of how the community school strategy has been used to support students and families and organize comprehensive summer and out-of-school programming.
- Ensuring Equitable Learning Environments for All Students On Thursday, July 29th and Friday, July 30th from 9:30am to 3:00pm CT IDRA EAC-South (EAC Region II) will virtually host its annual convening. During this event, school teams will get research-based practices, frameworks, and recommendations to provide a common language to address equity, student achievement, social emotional learning, and trauma responsive education. These resources will help educators reopen schools after the pandemic, reconnect with students to support their mental well-being and accelerated learning, and reclaim their own sense of connectedness, community and power. To register for this conference, click here.
- (Archived) Lessons from the Field Webinar Series: Indoor Air Quality and Ventilation in America’s K-12 Schools: Guidance and Strategies for Improved Results This webinar by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the U.S. Department of Education featured updates on maintaining safe indoor air quality in schools. Following the federal agency updates, a panel of practitioners discussed strategies they have utilized to improve indoor air quality and ventilation in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. To access the webinar materials click here.
- U.S. Department of Education Approves First Seven State Plans for Use of American Rescue Plan Funds to Support K-12Schools and Students, Distributes an Additional $6 Billion in Funds to Approved States. This week, the U.S. Department of Education (Department) announced the approval of seven American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ARP ESSER) state plans and distributed remaining ARP ESSER funds to those states. A total of 40 states have submitted their ARP ESSER state plans to the Department to date. To learn more click here.
- Department Invites States and School Districts to Apply for Additional $600 Million in American Rescue Plan Funds for Students Experiencing Homelessness. To help support the needs of students experiencing homelessness, the U.S. Department of Education (Department) is inviting states to complete the application for their share of the second disbursement of $800 million in funding under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021’s Homeless Children and Youth Fund (ARP-HCY). To learn more click here.
- The National Center for Special Education Research (NCSER) in the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) Announces FY22 Research Grant Competition. Under the Research to Accelerate Pandemic Recovery in Special Education grants program, NCSER will support research that directly addresses a pandemic-related problem, issue, or intervention (program, policy, or practice); has the potential to improve outcomes significantly and rapidly for students with or at risk for disabilities; and will provide actionable and timely results to districts and schools. For information on the IES application, click here. The National Center for Education Research and National Center for Special Education Research are hosting virtual office hours to provide technical assistance for grant applicants. Information on the sessions is available here. These virtual office hours will take place between June 28 and August 4.
Latest R1CC News
- New Blog: Assessing Educator Preparedness in Massachusetts to Effectively Teach Early Literacy Instruction. To support its Literacy Strategic Plan, DESE requested that the Region 1 Comprehensive Center (R1CC) conduct a statewide needs assessment on educator preparation in K–3 literacy instruction. The needs assessment consisted of a review of early childhood and elementary certification course syllabi (EPP Core Course Review) to understand which programs are preparing and providing preservice teachers with opportunities to learn about and practice evidence-based reading and writing instruction.
New Comprehensive Center Resources
- New Blog and Brief: Ten Practices to Maximize Learning Recovery by Leveraging the Procurement Process. By implementing several key practices in the procurement process, districts have an opportunity to change how procurement is done and to maximize desired outcomes. (National Comprehensive Center)
- New Brief: Learning Recovery and a Diverse Workforce: A Win-Win for Students Hardest Hit by COVID-19. This brief from the National Center provides suggestions and best practices for LEAs to jointly leverage the large evidence bases on both learning recovery and teacher diversity as they decide how and where to spend American Rescue Plan funds.
Additional Federal TA Network Resources
- New Video: Using PBIS to Ensure Racial Equity in School Discipline. Research shows that schools implementing PBIS with fidelity have more equitable school discipline. Yet eliminating disparities through standard PBIS implementation, without attention to the sociocultural context and systems that perpetuate inequities, is unlikely to produce desired outcomes. This video by the Center on Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support (PBIS) shares specific strategies and Center resources for increasing equity in PBIS systems.
- New Guide: A Guide to Identifying Similar Schools to Support School Improvement This guide by the Regional Educational Laboratory Central describes how an education agency can select a distance measure (a statistical rather than a geographic measure) to identify schools that are similar to a target school, using a variety of characteristics that enable school leaders to better understand their schools' relative performance. This guide is based on work done with the Nebraska Department of Education and is designed to help staff in other education agencies who are interested in implementing a similar approach to support school improvement.
Make Your Voice Heard
- Request for Information on Supporting the Reopening and Continuing Operation of Schools, Colleges and Universities, and Early Childhood Education Providers. The Department welcomes lessons learned and best practices from the field for consideration for the Safer Schools and Campuses Clearinghouse, including those with an educational equity focus. Submissions should be sent via email to: Bestpracticesclearinghouse@ed.gov. Please find additional submission information in the Federal Register notice.
The contents of this blog were developed under a grant from the Department of Education. However, those contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.