Thank you to our Sponsors: UW-Oshkosh, National Insurance Services, Culver’s VIP Foundation, Farmers Union, CESA Foundation, Forecast5, PMA, Meemic, Wisconsin Digital Learning Collaborative, Jostens and WEA Members Benefits

The Community’s public school is the greatest discovery, and the cornerstone of our democratic society – Horace Mann

Good Morning,
On behalf of the WiRSA Board of Directors I would like to congratulate the graduating Class of 2017. Best wishes and good luck.

June 23rd Deadline for Conference Proposal Reminder
The WiRSA Planning Committee is seeking proposals for sessions that share best practices, solutions and research in and outside our rural classrooms. We encourage you to share the great programs you are providing. Examples include teacher professional development, early literacy, innovative classroom practices, collaborative efforts within a school or with other schools and the use of technology.
Complete this form to submit a proposal.

Upcoming Legislative Hearings
May 30 – SB 187 regarding referendums will be heard in the Senate Committee on Economic Development, Commerce and Local Government. This bill requires a school board to include specific financial information in a resolution adopted by the board to exceed the school district’s revenue limit by issuing debt. WiRSA has registered in opposition to this bill.

May 31 – Joint Committee on Finance Executive Session
There still is no word on when Education will be heard.

May 31 – SB 169 regarding Conceal Carry will be heard in the Senate Committee on Judiciary and Public Safety. This bill this bill eliminates the prohibition on carrying a firearm on school grounds and, for persons without a license to carry a concealed weapon, in a school zone. Instead, this bill allows schools to post their buildings and grounds under the trespassing laws. WiRSA has registered in opposition to this bill.

From NREA – Big Meta-Analysis Says Four Teaching Strategies Are Most Effective For Low-Income Students (Article)

From IES-New Report on Crime and Safety in Schools and College Campuses

Crime in the nation’s schools and college campuses has declined over the past two decades, according to a report released today (May 16). The report also shows the prevalence of peer victimization among third graders and a significant increase in the number of forcible sex crimes reported on college campuses.

The new report, Indicators of School Crime and Safety 2016, is the 19th in a series of annual publications produced jointly by the National Center for Education Statistics, in the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences, and the Bureau of Justice Statistics in the U.S. Department of Justice.

The report presents statistics on crime and safety at schools and on college campuses, drawing upon an array of data collected from students, teachers, principals, and postsecondary institutions. It covers topics such as victimization, school conditions, discipline problems, disciplinary actions, safety and security measures at school, and criminal incidents at postsecondary institutions. This year’s report also includes topics related to international comparisons of school crime and safety, peer victimization in third grade, and student victimization and risk behaviors by sexual orientation.

The report shows that a higher percentage of gay, lesbian, or bisexual students, compared to heterosexual students, reported that they had been bullied on school property (34 vs. 19 percent) as well as electronically bullied (28 vs. 14 percent) during the previous year.

The new report shows a drop in the number of criminal incidents at postsecondary institutions but reflects an increase in reported sexual assaults on college campuses. In 2014, there were 27,000 criminal incidents on campuses at postsecondary institutions that were reported to police and security agencies, representing a 35 percent decrease from incidents reported in 2001 (41,600 incidents). However, reported forcible sex crimes on college campuses more than tripled between 2001 and 2014, from 2,200 to 6,700 incidents.

Other key findings include:

Bullying and Peer Victimization

  • In 2015, about 15 percent of U.S. fourth-graders and 7 percent of U.S. eighth-graders reported experiencing bullying at least once a month. These percentages were lower than the international averages of 16 and 8 percent, respectively;
  • In the spring of 2014, about 15 percent of third-graders reported that they were frequently teased, made fun of, or called names by other students; 22 percent were frequently the subject of lies or untrue stories; 14 percent were frequently pushed, shoved, slapped, hit, or kicked; and 15 percent were frequently excluded from play on purpose; and
  • Between 2005 and 2015, the percentage of students reporting being bullied at school during the school year decreased from 28 to 21 percent.

School Safety

  • In 2015, there were 33 victimizations per 1,000 students (ages 12 to 18) at school. This was down from 181 victimizations per 1,000 students in 1992, a decline of 82 percent;
  • A total of 12 of the 1,053 homicides of school-age youth between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014 occurred at school. During the same period, there were 8 suicides of school-age youth at school, compared with 1,645 total suicides of school-age youth that occurred in calendar year 2013; and
  • During the 2014–15 school year, there were 1,500 reported firearm possession incidents at schools in the United States, and the rate of firearm possession incidents was 3 per 100,000 students.

Postsecondary Institutions

  • There were fluctuations, but no clear change, in the number of arrests for weapons possession on postsecondary campuses between 2001 and 2014; the number of arrests ranged from 1,000 to 1,300 each year during this time span; and
  • Of the 804 total hate crimes reported on college campuses in 2014, the most common type of hate crime was intimidation (343 incidents), followed by destruction, damage, and vandalism (327 incidents), and simple assault (61 incidents). The two most frequent categories of motivating bias associated with these crimes were race and sexual orientation.

Click here to view the full report.

New projects investigate teacher pipeline and residency programs
REL Midwest will lead two projects in 2017 that support MDE’s focus on ensuring equitable access to effective teachers for all students in the state.

For the first project, REL Midwest researchers will analyze data from schools and districts to identify trends in teacher shortages and surpluses in Michigan. The researchers will examine whether trends vary
by license area, region of the state, school characteristics, or teacher pay. REL Midwest researchers also will create projections of teacher shortages and surpluses for the next 5 and 10 years to inform the work of alliance members and other stakeholders as they develop new programs and policies.

The other REL Midwest project will examine clinically oriented teacher preparation programs. Much like a medical residency program, clinically oriented teacher preparation programs offer prospective teachers both classroom experience and opportunities to work directly in a classroom under the guidance and direction of an experienced teacher. The programs typically include ongoing coaching, supervision, and support from the mentor teacher. MDE has identified clinically oriented teacher preparation programs as a potential strategy to develop highly effective new teachers and to remedy the teacher shortage problem.

Considering this interest, REL Midwest will research and develop a series of profiles of clinically oriented teacher preparation programs throughout the United States. In addition, REL Midwest will host a series of trainings to connect MDE staff and alliance members with representatives from clinically oriented programs with demonstrated effectiveness in teacher retention, student learning, and other outcomes if reported. MDE looks to use the in-depth information about clinically oriented programs to consider the feasibility and value of implementing such programs in Michigan.

Director Events from Last Week
May 21, Greenwood High School scholarship presentation
May 22, Ed Issues Call
May 22, Oakfield High School scholarship presentation
May 23, Battelle for Kids Rural Collaborative meeting
May 24, Rural Education and Healthcare, Grand Challenges Meet Up – Madison
May 25, CESA Conference – Madison
May 26, Ed Partners Call on upcoming bills

Director Events for the Upcoming Week
May 30, Ed Issues Call
May 30, Capital hearing on SB 187
May 31, Capital Hearing on SB 169
June 3, Panel presentation at Forward Conference

Rural School Awards
The WiRSA Rural Awards are a great way to recognize the great people you have in your district for the outstanding things that they do for your school district and rural education. Now is a great time to start thinking about nominees for the 2017 WiRSA Rural Awards. Click here for more information.

2017 WiRSA Conference: “Rural Schools– The Heart and Soul of Wisconsin”
The 2017 WiRSA Conference will be held Oct. 30-31 at the Glacier Canyon Lodge at the Wilderness in Wisconsin Dells.

Resources and Grant/Scholarship Reminders
WiRSA Scholarships
2017 WiRSA Rural Awards
2017 WiRSA Conference – Oct. 30-31 Glacier Canyon Lodge at the Wilderness in Wisconsin Dells
School Funding Reform for Wisconsin
ESEA Information and more here.
ESSA Overview Video – Narrated PowerPoint – This information is also available off the ESEA web page on the DPI site.
Into the Outdoors – Free Classroom Resources
Meemic Foundation Grants for Teachers
2017 AHEC Summer Health Camps

Have A Great Week!