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October 2010 Newsletter
Algebra II Test Paves the Wave for College
Hawai‘i P-20 led the way in creating stronger alignments between high school and college level courses in mathematics so students are better prepared to enter college with the knowledge necessary to succeed. As a result of a University of Hawai‘i system-wide mathematics summit that Hawai‘i P-20 held in October 2009, the University of Hawai‘i established a trial policy to smooth high school graduates’ entry into college-level mathematics courses. On the basis of their high school Algebra II performance (grade and end-of-course test results) recent Hawai‘i DOE graduates are guaranteed entrance into a college-level mathematics course. In August, 1400 high school graduates received letters notifying them that they scored "Minimally Prepared or Higher" on the Algebra II End-of-Course Exam, therefore, placing them into 100 level mathematics courses.
New Step Up Pledge Period Begins
The Step Up Campaign announced the opening of its new pledge year for the Classes of 2014 and 2015. Students in these classes will have until May 31, 2011 to pledge along with their parents to signify their commitment to earning the BOE "Step Up" Recognition Diploma. This diploma has been designed to prepare students for success upon graduation whether they choose to enroll in college or enter the workforce.
These new students will join over 6,300 "Step Up Scholars" already enrolled in the program. The Step Up campaign will also continue to work with its over 100 businesses and community partners to help promote the program and raise awareness about the importance of career and college readiness for Hawai‘i's high school graduates. If your company or organization is interested in supporting this year's campaign efforts or signing up students to pledge please contact Lesli Yogi at email@example.com.
For more information on the Step Up Campaign click here.
Two New P3 Demonstration Sites Selected
Hawai‘i P-20 Partnerships for Education selected the “Baby STEPS to Stronger Big Island Families” and “Windward P-3 Preschool to 3rd Grade Project” as P-3 demonstration project sites.
As demonstration project sites, these education communities will provide innovative site-based demonstrations of early childhood education and elementary school partnerships to improve access and quality early educational experiences for young children. Each demonstration project consists of the elementary schools and early childhood programs within a region.
“Children’s early years provide important opportunities to learn and to establish a solid foundation for learning,” says Hugh Dunn, director of early learning programs for Hawai‘i P-20. “Our vision is that these demonstration sites will provide our youngest learners with experiences that will develop their social-emotional and cognitive development toward the goal of every child reading at grade level by third grade.”
These two P-3 demonstration project sites join the Farrington Complex and the Waianae Complex which were selected last year as part of an effort to create a continuum of seamless early learning experiences for young children from early childhood programs through elementary school. Over the next four years (August 2010-June 2014), Hawaiʻi P-20, with the support of the W. K. Kellogg Foundation, will invest up to $1 million of resources to support these four demonstration projects.
National experts joined over 200 community and education leaders in Honolulu Sept. 10, 2010, to discuss how higher education could improve Hawai‘i’s ability to compete in the 21st-century global economy. The Higher Education Summit was designed to develop strategies for shaping Hawai‘i's education system and its future workforce in order to be globally competitive.
The keynote address was given by Martha Kanter, U.S. Undersecretary of Education, who emphasized President Obama’s goal of increasing the number of students who graduate from college by 50% by 2020 and how Hawai‘i can serve as a role model for other states. She stressed the importance of having a pipeline that doesn’t lose children along the way.
The summit also focused on the University of Hawai‘i's vision to increase the number of graduates by 25% by 2015. Organizations such as Hawai‘i P-20 continue to play a vital role in helping the University reach this goal. Its collaborative efforts to enhance the pipeline through its programs like GEAR UP Hawai‘i and STEP UP are focused on ensuring students are graduating from high school prepared to succeed in college and careers.
Hawai‘i Wins Race to the Top
In August, Hawai‘i was named one of 12 winning states to receive federal monies for education reform in Race to the Top, a $3.4 billion investment that challenged states to demonstrate plans to improve their public school systems.
Hawai‘i P-20 assisted in developing the winning proposal and was also represented on the 5-member team that presented the plan in Washington DC.
Designed to “incentivize excellence, drive reform, and promote the adoption and use of effective policies and practices,” Race to the Top was a nationally competitive program that required states to demonstrate capacity for real, dramatic reform as well as the capacity to achieve the reforms.
Hawai‘i has been awarded $75 million over four years to create bold, transformative changes that are targeted, ambitious and feasible:
· Raise Overall K-12 Student Achievement
· Ensure College and Career Readiness
· Increase Higher Education Enrollment and Completion Rates
· Ensure Equity and Effectiveness by Closing Achievement Gaps
To achieve these goals, a comprehensive, systemic five-point plan for success has been developed to address the following:
1) Tie high-quality, college- and career-ready standards and assessments to a statewide common core curriculum
2) Establish a longitudinal data system to track student progress and achievement from pre-school to postsecondary education
3) Cultivate, reward and leverage effective teaching and leading
4) Provide targeted support to struggling schools and students
5) Align organizational functions within the Hawai‘i Department of Education to support reform outcomes
Race to the Top has sharpened the focus on what is needed to graduate Hawai‘i’s students ready for career and college, and provides a framework for the changes that will improve our statewide public school system. Achieving Race to the Top goals puts Hawai‘i on path to meeting the P-20 Council's goal that 55% of working age adults will have a two or four year college degree and 100% will be career and college ready by 2025. Many of Hawai‘i's P-20 initiatives are mentioned in the Race proposal including Step Up, College and Career Ready Diploma, Longitudinal Data Systems, and College and Career Readiness Indicators Reports.
For more information: http://doe.k12.hi.us/arra/index.htm