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EDUCATION JOINT BOARDS WORKING GROUP

MINUTES

January 19, 2001

Call to Order

Jill Kirk called the meeting to order at 1:00 p.m., at Portland State University in Portland, Oregon.

Roll Call

Board Members Present: Wayne Feller (alternate), Jill Kirk, Jim Lussier, Phyllis Wustenberg, and Tim Young.

Staff Present: Jim Arnold, Pauline Bernard, Cam Preus-Braly, Clark Brody, Shirley Clark, Michael Dalton, Ron Dexter, Joanne Flint, John Greydanus, Lynda Rose, Elaine Yandle-Roth, Diane Vines.

Approval of Minutes

Mr. Young moved and Mr. Feller seconded the motion to approve the July 19, 2000, Joint Boards Working Group minutes as submitted. The minutes were unanimously approved.

Discussion on Teacher Education Issues

Dr. Zanville distributed a document entitled "Oregon School Principalsí Study 2000: Teacher Preparation and Shortages," which was completed by the Oregon Quality Assurance in Teaching Program.

Zanville noted the purpose of the study was to assess the impacts of recent changes in teacher licensure and teacher preparation programs in Oregon, the level of knowledge/skill of recent student teachers and overall quality of graduates of Oregonís newly redesigned teacher licensure programs.

Additional items focused on were teacher shortages, the availability of substitute teachers, the status of implementation of standards-based reforms in the schools, and school orientation and mentoring programs for new teachers.

The survey was mailed to all Oregon School principals in August 2000 with 52% of principals responding. Some of the key findings were as follows:

Indicated in the survey was the qualification of student teachers. Most principals report their new initially-licensed teachers are well prepared to teach and are better prepared than were their newly-licensed teachers in previous years.

Zanville gave the following items as the next steps needing further attention:

Mr. Lussier asked if the higher education campuses follow their students who are going into teaching. Zanville noted there is a tight relationship between the students and campuses, however, while the students are preparing for licensure it may be hard for the campuses to keep track of the students especially if they move around in or out of state. The campuses continually think of how the systems work together to prepare and place teachers.

Ms. Flint noted that one major challenge is quality placements. Teachers that are successful and engage students with instructional habits they employ have successful students and have less behavior management issues. Using strategies that engage students is a tremendous challenge and the difference it makes having a quality demonstration during your early years of teaching is the single biggest factor in success. The fear is there are not enough mentors for this challenge.

Lussier discussed the challenges schools have obtaining substitute teachers and wondered if districts hire full-time substitute teachers. Many districts will hire substitute teachers full time, responded Zanville, sending the teacher to different schools as needed.

Chancellor Cox noted the continuing problem with teacher retention and asked if there are any best practices or examples being used to improve this situation. As noted by Flint, the state of California has developed a beginning teacher mentor program that has reduced the rate of teachers leaving by 37%. This is a real cost effective tool for districts. Cox asked if this program is in place in Oregon. Flint shared that Oregon had a program in place until 1993, and then it was discontinued and has not been funded for three bienniums. Two years ago, a pilot program for 10 districts was funded using Goals 2000 federal money and it was so successful that other districts are trying to develop mentoring programs, but without funding they are not able to develop the same quality programs.

Feller shared the challenge of finding substitute teachers may be resolved by paying them more, since the data shows that substitute teachers make 50% less than regular teachers. Zanville commented that in the past, new teachers would join the substitute pool, get to know the teachers, principals, in the schools and then in a couple years would get a job. This is not the case now.

Lussier asked if there is a gender transition in the education field. Flint noted there is data available indicating the ethnicity and gender of those entering the teaching field. Zanville shared there is also data that not only breaks down the gender but also breaks it down into the subjects as well as grade levels. She noted teaching is still attractive to women, especially second or third career people. One major reason is due to the 9-month schedule for those individuals raising children.

"Reading" in Teacher Education Issues

Zanville noted the legislative involvement with this issue. Sen. Starr is considering a bill requiring new teachers to have a reading endorsement. There has been discussion if this would be the best course of action. Principals around the state noted that it is important that all teachers are able to diagnose students who are having problems with reading.

Zanville shared that OUS institutions have targeted ways in which reading instruction could be improved, both in the teacher preparation programs at the universities and statewide. The initiatives proposed to improve the teaching of reading include:

Flint distributed a chart indicating the reading growth over 10 years in percentages meeting standards. She indicated that Oregon has done as well as any other state in the nation in making progress in reading but still has much work to do. There are more students entering the system that are limited English proficient or have other limitations making reading more challenging. Strategies needed for classroom teachers are more diverse and the understanding required of how a child learns to read is significantly greater now. It is not necessary that every teacher have a reading endorsement, but all schools should have the capacity to have teachers who can teach reading to all aspects of students, including special education. Flint also noted that partnerships are important in strengthening this area. Standards have had a positive impact on reading, schools have improved their reading programs. There are programs such as the Reading Summit, Teacher Mentoring Program, Reading Excellence Act Grant, an award of which Oregon was one of first states to receive. The department will also review the reading endorsement area.

Cox asked for clarification of upgrading the reading endorsement. Flint replied this consists of raising the standard and asking how we want to use this endorsement. Where would those receiving the reading endorsement go and how would they utilize it.

Cox asked if technology can help in teaching reading. Wustenburg noted a study was done indicating that individuals retain more from listening to a person than they would by listening to a tape or other media. Zanville noted not many teachers are coming back to the institutions to add the reading endorsement. Using the option where they would take course work, they generally will use an alternative way to get the endorsement, such as doing a year long practica in schools and then pass a test. To strengthen the endorsement, that practice would be reviewed to include some testing and course work. Flint shared the correlation of language development to reading and the essence of teaching reading at the right time. She indicated if a student is not reading by third grade, they have difficulty in other subjects and may fall behind throughout the rest of their educational experience.

Kirk commented this work is very thoughtful and has raised a lot of questions about next steps. She asked if an objective will be set or developed as a result of this survey since each Board, separately and jointly, would like to assist in moving this forward. Wustenberg said in conversations with new teachers regarding how they spend their classroom time at universities, the preference is to be out in the field concentrating on reading instead of studying another course in education.

Zanville noted staff will be following legislative activity.

Early College Options Legislation

Ron Dexter reported this bill (originally SB 428), sponsored by Associated Oregon Industries, gives students an option of attending college prior to graduation of high school and receiving both high school and college credits. The purpose of this legislation is to expand opportunities for students. There is an effort by many agencies to look at SB 428,(now SB64 and version SB 65). Both bills are similar except for differences in effective dates and the type of vote needed. Dexter noted that ODE, Department of Community Colleges and Workforce Development, the Governorís Office, and Oregon University Systems met earlier in the day to work and review agreements proposed by all offices.

Dexter noted the following goals and design principles of the Department of Education:

Goals of the Expanded Options Program:

Design Principles:

Dexter noted the nationwide trend of students accessing higher education.

Yandle-Roth commented the Expanded Options Work Group has been meeting with the associations to develop agreement on the language of the bill. A meeting has been scheduled with Senator Avel Gordly and other interested legislators to look at what would be best for the students of Oregon. Staff will continue to keep the Boards up-to- date on this issue. The Expanded Options Work Group believes it can craft a positive piece, focusing on the students who would be either taking post-secondary or attending the community colleges.

Young asked if there are data indicating whether the students who participate in the early options programs stay in Oregon for their post-secondary education. Yandle-Roth noted the data that is gathered would only indicate the number of students attending University of Oregon or Oregon State University, a number of these students go to school out-of-state. School districts will be surveyed soon to establish the number of students they estimate will participate in the early options program, reported Zanville. With the increasing cost of college, many parents want to accelerate this progress. Dexter said with more technology the landscape is different; students have access to classes on the net and other opportunities that didnít exist during last legislative session.

Lussier commented it would be beneficial to know how many students are involved in this opportunity, pointing out that the concept is much more important.

Feller asked if the Expanded Options Work Group would put forward legislation that would compete with the AOI bill? Dexter responded the group will offer amendments to the bill, but it is not the goal of the group to create separate legislation. Feller asked when AOI would have a chance to review the proposed amendments. Yandle-Roth noted a meeting is scheduled on February 2 to discuss options.

Opportunities for Collaboration in Distance Education

John Greydanus, OUS, Terri Johanson, ODCCWD, Tom Cook, OPEN, Camille Cole, Oregon Access Network, presented this item.

Dr. Greydanus distributed a handout listing the Oregon K-20 Distance Education Working Group (K-20 DEWG) participants. He noted the urgency for bringing this group together and making a presentation to the Joint Boards. He noted that funding for SB 622 provided for statewide video conferencing network for regional ESDís and high schools in Oregon. The ESDís will receive funding through December 31, 2001.

Greydanus noted the core discussion Issues as:

Governance

(Who can/Should have the authority to initiate, guide/direct statewide K-20 initiatives in distance education?)

Financial

How will the "network" be funded after the SB 622 and Department of Administrative Services (DAS)/DVS incentive funds sunset?

Policies, Procedures, & Guidelines

How will infrastructure be maintained, upgraded and managed for peak performance and stability?

Training & Professional Development

Communication & Coordination

Application & Program Development

Mr. Cook shared the K-20 DEWG would like the Boards assistance in developing a K-20 strategy. He noted that 280 sites will be installed by December, but by the end of December, funding would expire. He has noted that most schools would have the financial liability to continue this program and some may not be able to afford it. K-20 DEWG has been working with DAS to see if they can negotiate reduced fees. DAS will be asking for additional funding approval during legislative session.

Cook said it is estimated that between 350-400 students participated in courses using distance education technology. He indicated that this is an Internet-based system.

Cook suggested the Joint Boards Working Group guide in governance strategies.

Cox asked whether this system would replace the current Ed-Net. He noted the Ed-Net system would shut down on June 30, 2001. Greydanus said that half of the distance education system would be off the ground by the June 2001 date, adding that there is still a lot of work to be completed. A huge issue is funding and the stability of having funding to make sure that the entire system doesnít end. Cook noted the objective of their presentation was is to notify the Boards that K-20 DEWG needs its guidance. Actions and proposals would be presented to the Boards at the next meeting.

Ms. Preus-Braly shared that distance education does have high interest in the legislature and a conversation should take place indicating that SB 622 only partially funded this system and more funding is needed to have a complete system.

Cook noted K-20 DEWG would make another presentation to the Joint Boards for further guidance.

Review of the Joint Boards Mission in Relation to the Collective Positions

Dr. Vines reported she and Mr. Brody reviewed whether the Joint Boards Working Group had a mission statement but found that it does not. The Joint Boards Working Group was formed to address common issues and to collaborate. She noted the handout Continuation Work Plan for 2000-01, which has not been updated, but was developed to keep the Boards abreast of items that will be coming up in future meetings.

Vines shared that staff has attempted to make these meetings more interactive as a suggestion from Board members. The items placed on the agendas generally are issues where there is a need to review it collectively or separately and staff is attempting to address the Boards request to be more proactive, and action oriented. Vines asked for any suggestions or comments.

Lussier shared the agenda is a great start, but would like to hear from the presenters what the Board can do to assist. He said if no action is requested we should look at the purpose of this group. Vines noted the presenters could include recommendations for Board action in their report. Young commented he sees the Joint Boards meetings promoting the ideas for those in the education community. Vines discussed the level of discussion in the current format instead of receiving reports. Kirk noted the format and the topics of discussion were engaging. Wustenberg commented she likes the way the meetings are currently formatted.

Vice- Chancellor Clark noted the questions written for Board review hopefully stimulate discussion. On behalf of staff, most of the reports the Boards receive takes a tremendous amount of time and staff effort. She said if the Board does not feel it is taking action now, it will in the future. As an example, the complexity to have a K-20 distance education state system without state funding is incredible. It is very helpful and motivating to the cross sector staff efforts to have the opportunity of presenting and discussing with the Joint Boards to set or develop policies and how they should be drafted and worked. The presenters appreciate having exchanges of ideas or action plans as they are being formulated.

Lussier shared the action that the Board takes is not management type of action, but future solutions that will affect the systems as a whole. He noted his concern regarding governance and the design of the systems. He said funding models have changed, but not governance and it hasnít been reviewed whether our designs are effective. This could be a subject to be discussed at a future meeting.

Adjournment

The meeting adjourned at 3:20 p.m.