CSG Midwest
Ohio lawmakers approved legislation this fall that will require more accountability and transparency in charter schools, which now educate one of every 10 students in the Buckeye State. Between 2003 and 2013, federal data show, enrollment in these alternative public schools jumped from 3.4 percent to 10.0 percent in Ohio.
CSG South

Just three years ago, almost every state in the nation belonged to a national testing consortium, such as the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) and Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (Smarter Balanced) whereas, today, barely half continue to participate in these multi-state comparative student assessments. The Southern region, in particular, has seen a shift away from the national testing consortia to state-specified student testing. As state education systems adapt to their new educational standards of college- and career-readiness, state governments continue to modify their approach to assessing student learning toward these standards.

After dismissing PARCC and Smarter Balanced, several states' education systems began, and currently continue, a transition to various alternatives. This SLC Regional Resource provides an overview of the strategies that SLC member states have undertaken for student testing, as of October 1, 2015. Specifically, the analysis examines the current status of K-12 testing requirements implemented by the 15 SLC member states for their general public school populations and the experiences of these states as they seek to improve their student performance measurement systems. Further, the report focuses on the many adjustments and changes to K-12 English language arts and mathematics student assessment systems implemented by Southern states in the post-Common Core educational era, geared toward preparing college- and career-ready students.

While the face of America may be changing rapidly, the face of the STEM workforce in America isn’t going anywhere fast.

While the definition of giftedness varies from state to state, federal legislation is quite clear about the definition of a gifted student. According to the No Child Left Behind Act, “gifted and talented” refers to students “who give evidence of high achievement capabilities in such areas as intellectual, creative, artistic, or leadership capacity, or in specific academic fields, and who need services or activities not ordinarily provided by the school in order to fully develop those capabilities.”

Experts say an education in science, technology, engineering, arts and math—or STEAM—is essential to building an innovative workforce in the United States, and the sooner students delve into STEAM education, the better.

Since April, Congress has been working to rewrite the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act, or ESEA, also known as the No Child Left Behind Act. On July 8, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Student Success Act. The following week, the U.S. Senate passed a bipartisan compromise—the Every Child Achieves Act. Both the House and Senate bills have much in common, but also diverge on a few critical issues, such as school choice, accountability and national student test opt-outs. This webinar provides a briefing on the history of ESEA, details on the transformation of federal education policy, an update on the key ESEA differences currently being debated, and insights into what longstanding implications the new federal education policies will have for state governments.

CSG Midwest
On an important measure of college and career readiness, high school students in most Midwestern states continue to outperform their peers from across the country.
CSG Midwest
Over the past decade and a half, via legislation and/or administrative rules, many states in the Midwest have established new standards, training requirements and limits on the use of these procedures, which are typically used in response to serious behavioral problems exhibited by students. This trend continued in 2015 with actions taken by the Kansas Legislature. Under HB 2170, signed into law in May, physical restraint or seclusion can only be used on students when they present a “reasonable and immediate danger of physical harm” to themselves or others.
CSG Midwest
For the past 60 years, high school students across the country have been able to complete college-level coursework through the Advanced Placement (AP) Program. In addition to the academic benefits, students may earn college credit for scoring well on their AP exams, which are graded on a scale of 1 to 5. But the policies on awarding credits can vary from state to state, or even within the same postsecondary system.
This summer, Illinois lawmakers approved a measure that ensures the state’s high-performing AP students will get a head start on their college careers. HB 3428, signed into law in August, requires all public colleges and universities in the state to award course credit for AP exam scores of 3 or higher. (The College Board and the American Council on Education recommend that a score of 3 or higher be the standard for awarding college credit.)

Congress returned from the August break facing the challenge of having to address a long list of critical issues in the dwindling legislative year. These important issues include reaching agreement on the budget and debt ceiling; addressing the expiring highway funding authority; overhauling federal education policy; and discussing cybersecurity legislation.