CT Post: Education Coalition suggests funding principles

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An unlikely coalition of traditional and pro-choice education groups have banded together to pitch guidelines on how the state should revamp its school funding system.

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Education Connecticut: Gearing Up for Important School Funding Battle; Education Groups Weigh in on School Formula

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The five organizations involved, include; the Connecticut Association of Boards of Education (CABE), the Connecticut Association of Public School Superintendents (CAPSS), the Connecticut Association of Schools (CAS), the Connecticut Coalition for Achievement Now (ConnCAN), and the Connecticut Council for Education Reform (CCER).

The group of organizations emphasized that they weren’t proposing a specific formula, instead, today, they released a joint statement offering six guiding core principles they hope lawmakers should use as a roadmap for developing a new funding system…

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Hartford Courant (Editorial): Secret Superintendent Evaluations Unacceptable

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Jeffrey A. Villar, executive director of the Connecticut Council for Education Reform, called for a balance between privacy and the public’s interest, saying, “There’s a certain level of privacy you give up when you sign on as a superintendent,” he said.

He’s right.

Legislators must align the evaluation process with the spirit of open government.

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Hartford Courant: Superintendent Evals Public Under State Law, But It Doesn’t Always Work Out That Way

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Jeffrey A. Villar, executive director of the Connecticut Council for Education Reform, said he is in the process of comparing Connecticut’s laws regarding superintendency to those in other states, to possibly develop a policy recommendation for legislators.

Villar said there needs to be a balance between maintaining employee privacy and acting in the public’s interest.

“A town does have a right to know, is the superintendent hitting the targets as established by the board [and] how does the board feel about the superintendent’s performance … That’s appropriate for a public official. There’s a certain level of privacy you give up when you sign on as a superintendent,” he said.

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The Bristol Press: Our View: Consider Regionalized Schools

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According to the Connecticut Council for Education Reform, while the number of students may decline, the administrative costs associated with running the schools continues to increase — something state Senate President Pro Tempore Martin M. Looney thinks must be considered.

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New Britain Herald: Our View: Consider Regionalized Schools

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According to the Connecticut Council for Education Reform, while the number of students may decline, the administrative costs associated with running the schools continues to increase — something state Senate President Pro Tempore Martin M. Looney thinks must be considered.

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mmc-news.com: Clash Over Connecticut Schools Flares Anew

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By Joseph De Avila (republished)

Jeffrey Villar, executive director of the Connecticut Council for Education Reform, an advocacy group that doesn’t support increasing school spending, said the state should change how it allocates money between wealthy and low-income school districts to make it fairer. But coming up with a system that doesn’t reduce funding for wealthier districts will be tough as the state faces a $1.5 billion deficit for the coming fiscal year that begins in July, he said.  “I think we face dramatic obstacles in resolving the issue,” Mr. Villar said.

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Wall Street Journal: Clash Over Connecticut Schools Flares Anew

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By Joseph De Avila

Jeffrey Villar, executive director of the Connecticut Council for Education Reform, an advocacy group that doesn’t support increasing school spending, said the state should change how it allocates money between wealthy and low-income school districts to make it fairer. But coming up with a system that doesn’t reduce funding for wealthier districts will be tough as the state faces a $1.5 billion deficit for the coming fiscal year that begins in July, he said.  “I think we face dramatic obstacles in resolving the issue,” Mr. Villar said.

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Yankee Institute: Connecticut on the naughty list: our schools aren’t nice to our kids

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Connecticut’s naughty education policies betray one of its biggest challenges: the achievement gap between groups of students based on income and background. The Connecticut Council for Education Reform examined Department of Education data on 8th grade math performance to determine that the state has the largest achievement gap in America for low-income students. Achievement levels of white and African-American students show similar disparity.

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CT Town & City: Point-Counterpoint

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Point-Counterpoint on Teacher Evaluation and Compensation begins on page 20.

By now, it is generally accepted that teachers are the most important in-school lever for improving academic outcomes. Quite rightly, they are also the biggest expense in our education system. So if our aim is to maximize our financial and human resources, we must encourage excellence in teaching. That means identifying how well our teachers perform (evaluation). And it means creating incentives so that excellent teachers are encouraged to stay on and work in our highest-need neighborhoods (compensation).

These issues are too complicated to iron out in a few paragraphs. But, at the end of the day, your position on both teacher evaluation and compensation will ultimately depend on whose needs you think Connecticut’s education system should be structured around serving: teachers or students. The CCJEF trial judge made clear that he believes the ultimate beneficiary of our education system should be kids, not adults. I tend to agree.

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