PTA Conference

Colorado Parent Teacher Association (CoPTA) members held their Annual Legislative Conference at the Capitol this week. I was honored to join the lunch panel, “Testing, Testing, 1, 2, 3,” to discuss Colorado’s assessment system and provide an overview of the recommendations of the Standards and Assessments Task Force. Other panelists included Katie Winner of PTA and John Ford, President of the Jefferson County Education Association. Over the course of the day, more than 40 PTA members met with their legislators, learned about how to be a more effective advocate for their schools and students, and attended workshops on school funding and the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR). Statewide, CoPTA has more than 24,000 members.

Leslie Colwell, Vice President for K-12 Education Initiatives, speaks at the Colorado Parent Teacher Association Annual Legislative Conference this week. Photo by Sen. Andy Kerr.
Leslie Colwell, Vice President for K-12 Education Initiatives, speaks at the Colorado Parent Teacher Association Annual Legislative Conference this week. Photo by Sen. Andy Kerr.

Capitol Update – Assessments Task Force Recommends Easing Testing Burdens, Maintaining Integrity

The Colorado Standards and Assessments Task Force (1202 Task Force) this week presented recommendations to a joint meeting of the House and Senate Education Committees on changes to the statewide student assessment system. The recommendations focused on reducing some tests to ease burdens on students and educators while maintaining the integrity, reliability and accountability of our statewide assessment system.

“The Children’s Campaign was proud to be a part of this important conversation,” said Chris Watney, President and CEO of the Colorado Children’s Campaign. “We believe the recommendations strike the right balance between providing parents and policymakers the information they need to ensure all kids are on track to succeed while easing testing burdens on educators and students.” Read the full report here.

Reach out to the House and Senate Education Committee members and let them know you support high standards and aligned assessments for our students. Consistent expectations and comparable information about student achievement and growth is how we ensure that all children—no matter their background—are achieving the education they need to succeed. Click here to read more. 

 

 

Capitol Update – HB 1202 Task Force to Present Findings on Wednesday

The HB 14-1202 Standards and Assessments Task Force will present its recommendations to a joint meeting of the House and Senate Education committees  on Wednesday, Jan. 28 upon adjournment of both chambers’ sessions (likely around 9:30am). Members of the Task Force, including the Children’s Campaign’s Bill Jaeger, will offer policy solutions to improve Colorado’s student academic assessment system.  The hearing will be held at the State Capitol in Room 271.  If you cannot attend in person, you can listen online here.

Assessments Task Force Prepares Recommendations

After months of meetings, public hearings, and discussions, the HB 14-1202 Standards and Assessments Task Force concluded its final meeting this week. The task force will present its findings to a joint meeting of the House and Senate Education Committees on Wednesday, Jan. 28 at the Colorado State Capitol in Room 271 upon adjournment of the morning session.

The task force has delved deeply into issues related to state assessments, local assessments, the value of assessment and opportunities to improve our state’s academic assessment system. Bill Jaeger, Vice President of Early Childhood Initiatives at the Children’s Campaign, served on the task force alongside 14 other leaders representing educators, administrators, charter schools, the business community and school boards.

The task force is likely to identify several opportunities to respond to those who are concerned about over-testing while still maintaining much of what is valued about Colorado’s assessment system. We look forward to continuing to work with state leaders to ensure that Colorado’s assessment system is thoughtful, balanced and provides important information on each child’s progress toward academic success.

 

Task Force Discusses Possible Changes to State Assessment System

Following a series of public discussions across the state, the Colorado Standards and Assessments Task Force convened for their fifth meeting on Monday, November 17.

Associates from the education research firm APA Consulting presented the final report of a study that was commissioned for the Task Force, which includes findings on time spent preparing for and administering assessments and perceived costs and benefits of various assessments. Task Force members then initiated a discussion about their preferences for changes to the state assessment system. Bill Jaeger, the Colorado Children’s Campaign’s Vice President of Early Childhood Initiatives who serves on the Task Force, emphasized the Campaign’s commitment to ensuring accountability for the performance of all students while exploring options for increased local flexibility in assessment.

Further developing the group’s recommendations will be the bulk of the work at the Task Force’s December meeting, which will be held on Monday, Dec. 15 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Jefferson County Schools Education Center, 1829 Denver West Drive, Building 27, in the 5th floor Board Room. Task Force recommendations will be submitted to the General Assembly by the end of January.

Access summaries of feedback received at roundtable discussions, as well as the Assessments Cost and Implementation Study and corresponding presentation, on the Task Force website.

Education Task Force Visits Grand Junction

More than 300 parents, educators and community members gathered Thursday evening to discuss the future of education in Colorado at a Grand Junction meeting of the Colorado Standards and Assessments Task Force. The task force is visiting KF 11.7.14 Education Task Forcecommunities around the state to gather feedback on state education standards and assessments. Click here for more information.

 

Standards and Assessments Task Force Tours State

This week, Children’s Campaign staff attended public input sessions hosted by the Standards and Assessments Task Force in Denver, Edwards, and Colorado Springs. These roundtable discussions are opportunities for interested stakeholders to communicate directly with Task Force members about their thoughts on questions such as what an effective statewide assessment system should include. We encourage community members to attend and share your  perspective! Upcoming meetings will be held on the following dates:

  • Oct. 28 in Loveland from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Thompson School District
  • Oct. 30 in Monte Vista from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Monte Vista High School
  • Nov. 5 in Denver from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. at STRIVE -Prep Green Valley Ranch
  • Nov. 6 in Grand Junction from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. at CMU Center
  • Nov. 6 in Fort Collins from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. at Poudre School District
  • Nov. 13 in Colorado Springs from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Colorado Springs Early Colleges

KF 10.24Please click here or visit the Task Force website for more information on these roundtable discussions and for details on where discussions will be held. Stakeholders are also invited to send written responses to the question above (or any general comments or feedback about assessments) to 1202taskforcefeedback@gmail.com. Written comments will be shared with the Task Force during their monthly meetings.

 

 

 

Colorado Standards and Assessments Task Force Roundtable Discussions

The Colorado Standards and Assessments Task Force will be holding a series of roundtable discussions to provide an opportunity for parents, educators, residents and other interested stakeholders to communicate directly with Task Force members. Selected members of the Task Force will attend each session and the public is invited to attend and discuss any issues of concern. The Task Force is especially interested in responses to the following questions:

  • What would an effective statewide assessment system include?
  • How would Colorado improve its assessment system? Please provide specific examples.
  • Are you familiar with the local assessments that are administered to students according to requirements of your district? If so, do you believe these assessments are valuable? Why?

The Task Force is charged with examining issues related to assessments, reporting findings, and providing legislative recommendations by January 31, 2014.

The Roundtable Discussions will be held on the following dates:

  • Oct. 20 in Denver from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at North High School
  • Oct. 22 in Edwards from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Battle Mountain High School
  • Oct. 23 in Colorado Springs from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Nikola Tesla Education Center
  • Oct. 28 in Loveland from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Thompson School District
  • Oct. 30 in Monte Vista from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Monte Vista High School
  • Nov. 6 in Grand Junction from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at TBD
  • Nov. 13 in Colorado Springs from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Colorado Springs Early Colleges

Please click here or visit the Task Force website for more information on these roundtable discussions and for details on where discussions will be held. Stakeholders are also invited to send written responses to the question above (or any general comments or feedback about assessments) to 1202taskforcefeedback@gmail.com. Written comments will be shared with the Task Force during their monthly meetings.

Assessments Task Force Broadens Feedback Request

A state task force examining Colorado’s K-12 academic standards and assessments is seeking answers to a broad range of questions on assessments. The 15-member task force, which includes Children’s Campaign Vice President for Early Childhood Initiatives Bill Jaeger, would like to hear from parents, educators and residents across Colorado. The questions:

  • What would an effective statewide assessment system include?
  • How would Colorado improve its assessment system? Please provide specific examples.
  • Are you familiar with the local assessments that are administered to students according to requirements of your district? If so, do you believe these assessments are valuable? Why?

The Colorado Standards and Assessment Task Force is charged with examining issues related to assessments, reporting findings and providing legislative recommendations by January 31, 2015. To help inform the process, please send responses to the question above (or any general comments about assessments) to 1202taskforcefeedback@gmail.com. Written comments will be shared with the task force during their monthly meetings. To view these comments and other related information, as well as a schedule of upcoming meetings please visit: http://www.cde.state.co.us/cdedepcom/taskforce/.

Colorado Standards and Assessments Task Force Seeks Comments

A state task force examining Colorado’s K-12 academic standards and assessments is seeking answers to the question: “What components should a statewide student assessment system include?” The 15-member task force, which includes Children’s Campaign Vice President for Early Childhood Initiatives Bill Jaeger, would like to hear from parents, educators and residents across Colorado.

The Colorado Standards and Assessment Task Force is charged with examining issues related to assessments, reporting findings and providing legislative recommendations by January 31, 2015. To help inform the process, please send responses to the question above (or any general comments about assessments) to 1202taskforcefeedback@gmail.com. Written comments will be shared with the task force during their monthly meetings. To view these comments and other related information, as well as a schedule of upcoming meetings please visit: http://www.cde.state.co.us/cdedepcom/taskforce/.