FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: CT’s Increased Graduation Rate Shows Narrowing of Achievement Gap

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
CONTACT: Nicki Perkins
EMAIL: Nicki.Perkins@ctedreform.org
PHONE: 203-506-5799

CCER: CT’s Increased Graduation Rate Shows Narrowing of Achievement Gap

New Haven, Connecticut – Today, on May 14th, 2014, Governor Malloy and Commissioner Pryor announced that Connecticut’s high school graduation rate has increased for four consecutive years. In response, Jeffrey Villar, executive director of the Connecticut Council for Education Reform (CCER) made this statement:

“We are pleased to learn that Connecticut’s graduation rate is continuously improving. According to Governor Malloy’s office, the statewide average graduation rate has increased by 3.7 percent since 2010. The graduation gap between students from low-income families and their peers has been reduced by 17.5 percent over the same period. It is essential that we continue this progress. There are too many low-income children and children of color who don’t graduate from high school. Students who drop out of school earn less than college graduates, each cost the state more than $500,000 across their lifetimes, are more likely to be incarcerated, and become part of an unskilled labor force in Connecticut. Read More »

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: CCER Pleased with Outcome of 2014 Session

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
CONTACT: Nicki Perkins
EMAIL: Nicki.Perkins@ctedreform.org
PHONE: 203-506-5799

CCER Pleased with Outcome of 2014 Session

New Haven, Connecticut –Jeffrey Villar, executive director of the Connecticut Council for Education Reform (CCER), today released the following statement about the conclusion of the 2014 legislative session:

“CCER came into the legislative session with two primary objectives: to make sure the reforms that were been passed over the last two years stayed in place, and to expand preschool opportunities for children from low-income families. Now that the session has come to a close, it’s clear both of those things happened, so we’re very pleased.

“This session, both the Common Core State Standards and the teacher evaluation and support system came under intense scrutiny. These reform efforts are designed to raise academic standards; provide teachers with more professional development and opportunities to delve deeply into content with their students; and increase accountability for learning. Despite substantial efforts to delay or block the implementation of these improvements to public education, both reform efforts remain in place.

“In addition, new legislative actions were taken to expand preschool opportunities. We’ve codified the Office of Early Childhood into law, increased the number of School Readiness slots, and established a grant program to fund the expansion of district preschool services. Each of these steps is intended to increase preschool opportunities in Connecticut.

“None of this would’ve been possible without a strong spirit of collaboration amongst all stakeholders in education reform.  We are grateful to our colleagues in the Big Six, to Connecticut’s legislators, and to the administrations of Governor Malloy and Commissioner Pryor. All of them continue to make improving public education a priority in our state.”

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About the Connecticut Council for Education Reform

The Connecticut Council for Education Reform (CCER)–a statewide, non-partisan, 501(c)(3) not- for-profit organization–works to close the achievement gap and raise academic outcomes for all students in Connecticut. The achievement gap is the disparity in academic achievement between children from low-income families and children of color, and their peers. We advocate for state policies and local practices that research shows have the best chance of raising achievement for high-need student populations.

For more information on CCER, go to www.ctedreform.org

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: National Test Results Show Reforms Are Working in CT

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
CONTACT: Nicki Perkins
EMAIL: Nicki.Perkins@ctedreform.org
PHONE: 203-506-5799

National Test Results Show Reforms Are Working in CT

New Haven, Connecticut – On May 7th, 2014, Connecticut received promising news about its results on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). NAEP, sometimes known as “the Nation’s Report Card,” allows states to compare results, while also reporting on states’ progress in narrowing gaps.

In response to the results released today, Jeffrey Villar, executive director of the Connecticut Council for Education Reform (CCER) made this statement:

“We saw particularly promising progress in 12th Grade Math and Reading. Overall, our twelfth graders topped the nation in both of these subjects, coming in first place for Reading and performing impressively in Math.Read More »

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: CCER Applauds Malloy and Legislature for Codifying Office of Early Childhood

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
CONTACT: Nicki Perkins
EMAIL: Nicki.Perkins@ctedreform.org
PHONE: 203-506-5799

CCER Applauds Malloy and Legislature for Codifying Office of Early Childhood

New Haven, Connecticut – On May 5, 2014, Governor Malloy praised the General Assembly for passing legislation to establish the Office of Early Childhood (OEC). The OEC’s establishment follows an unusual turn of events a year ago, when the General Assembly failed to pass a bill creating the OEC, while the state budget still allocated funding to its creation. As a result, Malloy had created the OEC by executive order. The legislature’s action this session ensures the office’s continuity by placing it into statute. 

In response today, Jeffrey Villar, executive director of the Connecticut Council for Education Reform (CCER) made this statement:Read More »

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Do Not Cut Education Funding. It is Critical to the Health of the State’s Economy.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
CONTACT: Nicki Perkins
EMAIL: Nicki.Perkins@ctedreform.org
PHONE: 203-506-5799

CCER: Do Not Cut Education Funding. It is Critical to the Health of the State’s Economy. 

New Haven, Connecticut – On Friday, April 25th, the Office of Fiscal Analysis reported that tax revenues have been lower than expected for this fiscal year, which means the State will need to reduce expenditures. In the face of potential budget cuts, Jeffrey Villar, executive director of the Connecticut Council for Education Reform (CCER), released the following statement:

“We are pleased that the Malloy administration still plans to fund its top priorities: investing in education and economic development. These two priorities are critically linked. Any cuts to education or the education reform budget would be both shortsighted and irresponsible.

“In Connecticut, each high school dropout costs Connecticut more than $500,000 over the course of his or her lifetime. This is because students who don’t have a high school diploma both earn less and require more social services than their peers who graduate. ForRead More »

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: CCER Says Modifications to Evaluation System Should Not Diminish Teacher Accountability

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
CONTACT: Nicki Perkins
EMAIL: Nicki.Perkins@ctedreform.org
PHONE: 203-506-5799

CCER: Modifications to Evaluation System Should Not Diminish Teacher Accountability

New Haven, Connecticut – On Thursday, April 24th, the Performance Evaluation Advisory Council (PEAC) proposed changes to Connecticut’s teacher evaluation and support system. These modifications have yet to be reviewed by the State Board of Education.

Today, Jeffrey Villar, executive director of the Connecticut Council for Education Reform (CCER) made this statement:

“I was the superintendent of a district that piloted the new teacher evaluation and support system last year, and I believe it to be a strong and important step towards establishing teacher accountability across the state. By directly tying teachers’ effectiveness to their students’ growth in learning, we are reshaping the way we think about a teacher’s responsibilities. The model works well for evaluating teachers who teach subjects with available standardized assessments.

“CCER opposes efforts to relax accountability or to provide loopholes that will eliminate the requirement of standardized indicators as a component of evaluations.Read More »

CCER: Appropriations Committee Budget is Shortsighted on Teacher Evaluations and Quality Pre-school

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
CONTACT: Nicki Perkins
EMAIL: Nicki.Perkins@ctedreform.org
PHONE: 203-506-5799

CCER: Appropriations Committee Budget is Shortsighted on Teacher Evaluations and Quality Pre-school 

New Haven, Connecticut – Jeffrey Villar, executive director of the Connecticut Council for Education Reform (CCER), today released the following statement in response to the release of the Appropriations Committee budget:

“CCER is pleased that the Appropriations Committee adopted the majority of the Governor’s proposed budget. This demonstrates a continued commitment by our legislators to providing every Connecticut child with a great education. In particular, CCER strongly supports the inclusion of funding to create an additional 1,020 pre-school slots for low-income children.

“However, the Appropriations Committee budget, as compared with the Governor’s proposed budget for 2014-2015, makes two changes that concern CCER.Read More »

For Immediate Release: PRESS CONFERENCE–Superintendents, School Boards, Principals, Business and Community Leaders in support of Common Core State Standards

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
CONTACT: Nicki Perkins
EMAIL: Nicki.Perkins@ctedreform.org
PHONE: 203-506-5799
Educators, students, business and community leaders, and parents join to support Common Core Standards
“These standards were designed by educators and are supported by all of us here today, because of the promise they offer for all of our children.” — Dr. Joseph Cirasuolo, executive director of the Connecticut Association of Public School Superintendents
Hartford, Connecticut (March 12, 2014) — Groups representing superintendents, school board leaders, principals, parents, and business and community leaders all across Connecticut gathered today to support the Common Core State Standards, and to fight against a measure being considered by the Connecticut General Assembly to halt implementation of the standards.

“The one thing that we know in education is we are not succeeding with enough of our students, particularly in urban environments. The Common Core is an important part of preparing our students for lifelong success,” said New Haven Superintendent of Schools Garth Harries. “And by having fewer, but clearer and higher standards, teachers can go deeper with their lessons and do what they do best — make learning come to life for kids. Any roll-back of Common Core is a step back for our kids.”

The Common Core State Standards were adopted unanimously by the Connecticut State Board of Education on July 7, 2010. Connecticut is one of 45 states that have voluntarily adopted the standards, which were developed by The Council of Chief State School Officers in consultation with educators, unions and other stakeholders.Read More »

For Immediate Release: PRESS CONFERENCE–Superintendents, School Boards, Principals, Business and Community Leaders in support of Common Core State Standards

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
CONTACT: Nicki Perkins
EMAIL: Nicki.Perkins@ctedreform.org
PHONE: 203-506-5799
PRESS CONFERENCE: Superintendents, School Boards, Principals, Business and Community Leaders in support of Common Core State Standards
Hartford, Connecticut (March 10, 2014)  – A group of superintendents, school board leaders, principals, business and community leaders will gather at the Legislative Office Building – Room 2A at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, March 12, to express support for the Common Core State Standards.

The rigorous Common Core State Standards are clear and consistent, designed to make sure that what kids need to learn at each grade level builds on the grade level before. We believe that the Common Core will help ensure that all Connecticut students are prepared for college and careers, which, in turn, will help make sure Connecticut thrives.

Unfortunately, we are witnessing confusion and misinformation about these standards that could prevent us from reaching these goals. Two measures being considered by the General Assembly will weaken or even halt the commitment Connecticut made to its children when it adopted the Common Core Standards. We must not let this happen. 

WHO: Superintendents, school board leaders, principals, business and community leaders
WHAT: Press conference to express support for the Common Core State Standards
WHEN: Wednesday, March 12 @ 10 a.m.
WHERE: Legislative Office Building – Room 2A, Hartford, CT.

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About Connecticut’s Big Six
Our partnership includes the Connecticut Association of Boards of Education (CABE), the Connecticut Association of Public School Superintendents (CAPSS), the Connecticut Association of Schools (CAS), the Connecticut Business and Industry Association (CBIA), Connecticut Coalition for Achievement Now (ConnCAN), and the Connecticut Council for Education Reform (CCER).

For Immediate Release: CCER Executive Director to Present to MetroHartford Alliance

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CCER Executive Director to Present to MetroHartford Alliance

New Haven, Connecticut – Jeffrey Villar, executive director of the Connecticut Council for Education Reform (CCER), will be meeting with MetroHartford Alliance today.

“The MetroHartford Alliance is the Region’s leading business and economic development organization,” said Villar. “These are critically important stakeholders in the education reform movement because, in many ways, they are the clients of the public education system. It is the job of public education to produce graduates who are college- and career-ready. But I’m sure that the members of the MetroHartford Alliance will agree with me that the existing education system has not been succeeding in that goal. That’s why we need to talk honestly about the ways in which the infrastructure of public education needs to be reshaped.

“Today, I hope to review CCER’s legislative priorities for 2014, and also to talk about why Common Core is such a pivotal piece of the puzzle. I hope to find supporters of this initiative at the MetroHartford Alliance.”

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