Indiana Department of Education

The second half of the legislative session begins this week, and the House and Senate have two very different bills to expand state funded pre-K.

Both bills passed out of their original chambers and are now being considered by the opposite chamber of the statehouse. Before the session, both Republicans and Democrats supported expanding the pilot program and allocating more money for preschool scholarships for low-income children.

Let’s take a look at these two pre-K proposals and where each bill stand now:

Adding Vouchers To The Pre-K Equation

This week marked the last committee meetings of the first half of the session, as both chambers scramble to wrap up any bills they want to move forward into the second half of the session. Monday and Tuesday are the last days both chambers can approve a bill if they want it to move forward. The legislature will then take the rest of the week off and return the following Monday.

Appointed State Superintendent Gets Surprising Vote

This Week At The Statehouse: Appointed Superintendent Discussion

Feb 10, 2017

This week, legislators discussed many education bills, including one that would make state superintendent an appointed position and options for replacing the ISTEP. Here are the highlights:

Senate: Appointing The State Superintendent

The state board of education released district A-F grades Wednesday for the 2015-2016 school year. More than 150 schools saw their rating dip, with 90 percent of Indiana schools receiving a B or C rating.

Only 23 school corporations received an A rating. Gary Community Schools in northwest Indiana received the state’s single F rating.

Report: Indiana’s Teacher Evaluation Law Needs Update

Jan 10, 2017

Researchers studying Indiana methods for evaluating teacher performance say districts should develop clearer and more consistent reviews.

As part of an ongoing project to help schools meet a state law that changed teacher evaluations in Indiana, a research group spent the last four years studying how districts measure and deliver feedback to their teachers. The group is based at the Center on Education and Lifelong Learning at Indiana University and led by researches Hardy Murphy and Sandi Cole,

Peter Balonon-Rosen/Indiana Public Broadcasting

This is a two-part series looking at the candidates for Indiana Superintendent of Public Instruction.  

The state superintendent runs the Department of Education and chairs the State Board of Education.

 GLENDA RITZ

When Democrat incumbent Glenda Ritz first ran for state superintendent in 2012, she was the underdog.

She faced Republican incumbent and school reform advocate Tony Bennett. He praised charter schools, supported the creation of the voucher program and new ways to hold teachers and schools accountable for low test scores.

WFIU / https://www.flickr.com/photos/wfiupublicradio/

The Department of Education announced Monday the number of new teachers receiving licenses from the state saw a huge increase this school year. 

Last school year, the Department issued around 3,800 licenses to new teachers, the lowest of the last six years. This school year, around 4,500 were issued- an 18-percent increase.

That's a sharp turnaround. Recently there have been fewer people applying for new teacher licenses – the number has been dropping each year for the last three years.

Inside A Dual-Language Preschool For Migrant Workers' Children

Oct 19, 2016
Peter Balonon-Rosen/Indiana Public Broadcasting

Depending on the season, Indiana farms employ between 2,000 and 20,000 migrant farm workers. When workers migrate, often their families do, too.

Children in this mobile lifestyle can face interrupted schooling, cultural and language barriers, and social isolation — factors that inhibit a child’s ability to do well in school.

Philip Brookes / https://www.flickr.com/photos/philipbrookes/

The Republican challenger of democratic state superintendent Glenda Ritz wants authorities to investigate an education department contract that’s recently come under fire.

Jennifer McCormick is calling the inspector general to investigate a 2015 contract for an education department mobile app.

Benjamin Chun / HTTPS://WWW.FLICKR.COM/PHOTOS/BENCHUN/

2015 ISTEP scores were supposed to be posted online for parents to see Thursday, but an executive from the company scoring the test now says that will be pushed back until Tuesday.

Pearson, the company that created and scores the ISTEP, wrote a letter saying it’s taking longer than expected to final check the scores and ensure quality control. Parents will be able to view their child’s score Tuesday.

This is the first year Pearson is scoring the assessment. Once the initial scores are posted Tuesday, parents have until August 12 to submit for a rescore. ​

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