tv Education Secretary John King Testimony on the Every Student Succeeds Act CSPAN June 24, 2016 6:22am-7:33am EDT
so can you discus how the department and state leaders and local school districts can work together to make sure that assessments do provide useful information to teachers and families including the statewide assessments that were authorized in the legislation bipartisan members of congress. >> so i've had the privilege on working son some former assessments and i do think we started with the idea of making sure we really have educators involved in these conversations and this goes at the local, the state and the federal level, i
think it's very important to continue to look at how we are developing our assessments because it's really educator voice that really know what this actually looks like in the classroom and the type of information we would want back to be looking at how we are doing. >> thank you, pretty early adopter of -- adaptive testing and tremendous potential there. ms. hall, you wanted to discuss that as well because i share your perspective that it's important to assess? we just want to make sure we are doing the right thing with those assessments. >> absolutely. we appreciate your leadership in efforts to support states to audit assessments and eliminate low-quality duh -- duplicative.
that said, it is important not to go to far, we need that consistent measure from assessment that's assigned with state standards to be able to tell educators, help parents, help policy makers how every student is doing relative to state set standards and that allows to identify both of those students, those schools, those districts that are struggling to target resources and support to those areas but also allows to identify consistently students, schools, districts, that are doing an exceptional job particularly with low-income students, students of color, english learners and stwuints disabilities. those are our areas that we need to go celebrate and we need to learn from because they are getting the kinds of results of
all students to high levels that is the goal of all of our work here and -- >> i don't mean to interrupt, i want to get a quick question in. dr. pruitt, you talked about -- i want to talk about alternative diploma for students with significant cognitive disabilities. how does your state plan to develop high-quality pathway for students with the most significant cognitive disability and will you prevent that prohibits a student with cog anitive disabilities? >> absolutely, we have to protect our students that are most vulnerable but we also need our diplomas to mean something. ii don't want student to walk
across stage that paper is not even worth what is on. this is exactly what we are expecting with these diplomas, we are going to work closely with our districts but we are going to do our level best to ensure that nobody can gain the system as the adult gets the benefit and the student doesn't. >> my time has expired and i will follow occupy on the transportation of foster students. >> you're recognized for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you all for being here. first of all, when we talk about discussing this, you know, the three people that have concerns with the rule are practitioners and public education. they're not think tank, high level policy, people who want children to learn. they want to make the public system more. public school, invest in the public school system and those were the concerns coming from.
the secretary said, well, we can't accomplish all the other things the law require, if we don't set it from washington, they won't be able to comply with everybody else. and that is really frustrating because it just assume that is if a few smart people in the room figured it out then it works for everybody. the next example is trying to find the bottom 5%. you've said i've got committees of people trying to figure out how to set a rating system that gives you what you need according to law and to make kids better. that's the beauty of our country and what you guys are doing is taking your ideas and bringing them up. that's exactly what we try to do in a bipartisan way and my friend just said that she fought for certain parts to be in there. that was really a collaborative
effort and we were afraid of the rules coming down and you guys to have your input, one thing that kind of struck is that you said that under the old system and new system because of the year you had one that was top 5% and then in the new system bottom 5%. how does that work? how does two systems generate such different results? what's the details of that? >> in the old system they were in the bottom five and so because of the exit criteria they had to stay in that going into the new system. so the two systems overlapped in such way that it didn't allow a reset button or refresh button if you will, so under the new system where there was a much greater view at quality of the system -- of the programs and not just the achievement but the quality of the programs, what we found that the schools are some of the best performers when you look at a broader range of
criteria. as a result they are stuck, now, they would probably come off of the priority list in the next year, but because they were stuck there to start with in the old system, it really has created a sense of distrust in that system by the fact that when you look at any list from kentucky you see the schools at distinguished and as priority and it just -- >> town hall meetings, kind of talk about that process and people showed up for those town hall meetings, practitioners, parent concerns, attended well and promoted and did a good job with it. so talk about that process and then what happens when you have a system that people just don't trust? >> sure, so we decided earlier that the thing we had to do was be out in the field. if we really had to develop a system that reflected the value
and so we had 11 town halls. at all of our town halls we never had less than about 200 and we had over 300 in several cases so we had well over 3,000 people that showed up to these, we had parents, teachers, board local members, legislators, community members, civil right member that is came and told us what they valued in the education system. so we took that and videoed each one and we took notes on each one, we posted those for everybody to be able to see. >> so what did you learn from that that you implemented or try today bring in -- >> we learned that kentuckians want a simple system that makes clear what performance is and not the appearance of performance. we learn that had the education of the whole child must be critical and not just focus on math and reading and we learned that we have to cut down on competition between our districts and embrace the idea
of common really. districts are willing to work together to get the children what they need as oppose to i have to be better than you for me to get better writing. >> like i said, when you have town halls and people out there, personally i say how could you rate a school if you don't have rating and that's the beauty of what this law is trying to do. we have people who really care about what they're -- passionate about what they're doing and helps everybody. mr. chairman, i just ran out of time, i yield back. >> i thank the jason, the jason's time has expired. >> dr. pruitt, i'm fascinating not only by reading your testimony but ahead of the curve as i understand a lot of states are doing is to address how we implement this new law.
one of the things that i was interested in reading your system how you engaged the business community. of course, business communities make the decision where they locate based on a skill workforce, educator's workforce. several areas in my district, well, we have to have an educated workforce, how do we do that? and it's a challenge. as far as your experience in the business community what have you seen and your community address incredible need to get folks back to work in this country? >> great question.
workforce is incredibly linked to education. i think we are very lucky in our state that we have a governor who -- and our legislator who is very focused in workforce. that's an area of mine that i have particular interest as well. one of the things about the regs is they give technical career and education, we are recognizing it as a major portion of a student's educational experience. i think we are recognizing that simply graduating from high school is not enough. that should not be a terminal degree or diploma. we need to train schools whether they go to university or to your technical college or directly into the career workforce, we have to provide all those opportunities laid out for students and do a good job counseling them. we have had a great relationship with our cabinet workforce and education in that we were
working with our kentucky workforce innovation board to actually have the business community tell us so that we can actually develop pathways for specific jobs that are needed in the different regions of kentucky. so as we work with our kwib, we are asking them which pathways are important so we can attract better business to the communities because we will actually have a workforce that's able to meet the needs because we are not just randomlying giving career tech credit, we are actually focused on giving the credit that's necessary to be able to fill the job needs. >> i will congratulate you on your work. >> thank you. one of the things -- educating the whole child and i was
shocked and asking questions and i always ask what's your biggest challenge and everywhere i went they talked about the emotional health of these young people. and, of course, we are talking about how do you educate the entire person. you care to comment on any issues you're having and how you're addressing that. >> you know what, we just engaged in our district on that entire topic, talking about what does make sense and how we are ensuring the emotional, mental of our kids and are we putting stress and pressure on them and it's been an awesome conversation, so starting in two years we are going to start later in the day based on research. we found a way to compact the day, shortening lunch periods,
we also put parameters and limits on how long practices and activities can last and we are providing opportunities during the year where we are asking our staff and our students not to do work for weekends for a year. go be a kid, staff, focus on your family because we need people to step away and come back completely reengaged and i'm really excited about that to track about that and see if it has impact but we have to do something to impact the whole child and that's what's frustrating and at least a couple of us are here today concerned, none of of that conversation is about a score. we have to provide access and opportunities to rebuild really our communities. >> gentleman, time has expired. >> first one for any one of you.
i don't know if you were here and were able to hear the secretary's testimony. if there's anything he said that you would like to respond to. >> i mentioned this earlier, i think some of his interpretations that were in the regs were different than our interpretations. ours being kentuckians, i really don't think that he says the timeline issue the same way we do. having 16-17 identification and 17-18, he mentioned that 11-18 was a planning year which was new to me. i hadn't heard that before. my understanding that 117-18 was the year that you started. if it's a planning year, i think that maybe we could have a little bit more time to actually engage more shake holders and build a better system but and maybe i missed that part but for me that was a bit of news, so
maybe i will have to go back and reread but the way i understand it is actually they've accelerated it and in my opinion, the current regs would actually cause the current system to stay in place because it limits my ability to be innovative, it limits my ability to be able to do something new and special. >> okay. >> okay. i just would like to emphasize on the importance of teacher voice, and as you probably read in my testimony, i do work in some of our lowest-performing schools in colorado and with teachers on the ground floor daily and what we would like to see is allowing teachers to elevate their voices on what to do to actually improve outcomes for the students in these conditions. so once again, teacher voice, it's really hard for someone up
here in dc to start dictating what we are doing in low-performing schools. it's really hard, thank you. >> i think we heard the secretary talk many times about the importance of stakeholder engagement and getting feedback through this entire implementation process and i believe that there are many instances where the department has made good on that and is continuing to make good on that, we al heard the secretary talk about putting guardrails in place but still allowing state and local decisions in key places and i believe that the regulatory kind of proposal in many instances allows for that. one of the examples he talked about was identifying schools that are consistently underperforming based on goals and not federally prescribed goals but those based on analysis on state data and i really appreciated that. >> this is the first time in 15 years that we have the
opportunity as people in the field and in the states to develop some innovative creative ways to address the goals of essa and i'm superconcerned about timelines and not giving us the time to collectively engage stakeholders and plan for that implementation, we want to transform and lead and we can do that, we just need time to engage in that process. so i'm very concerned that a tight timeline is going to result in a continuation of what has been and that is not what we want. >> okay, i have a question for because i always like math and i recently had a discussion of somebody that's very involved in the system. i've been a teacher. i think he's a tutor, been involved for many years. kind of interesting that you thought we needed more input from the teachers. when i was in the state legislature and i introduced a
bill and i think it's right that would bar the use of calculators on standardized test, part of it was -- i felt it was one of the reasons why our children were having such a hard problem with math and that they were not -- they were not developing the ability to play with numbers in their head. i wondered what your comments were on that, whether you felt like my friend that was one of the reasons why our kids are underperforming in math and i don't like the federal government imposing on it, something on the state level we ought to take calculators away and force those kids to -- play with numbers in their minds n15 second, please. >> it depends on what you're doing and so i do think it is important for kids to be flexible with numbers but there's also some problem solving that's at higher level
that we might want to incorporate use of calculator to reach some more complex problem solving situation. >> time has expired. >> mr. scott, you're recognized for closing. >> thank you, mr. chairman, thank you for convening the -- the hearing. a lot of issues were brought forward. one of which was the idea supplement and since i indicated since the brown decision there's a constitutional responsibility to provide education, an equal educational opportunity and supplement, the plan should be supplemental over and above, not an unconstitutionally underfunded level but what should have been a bare minimum under the constitution providing equal education, equal opportunity and then supplemental because under the
elementary and secondary education act of 1965 we recognized the challenges that occurred when there's significant trance tryings of poverty. so we need to make sure that we do not excuse those localities that are not funding education up to at least the constitutional level. there are a lot of other issues that came up but i think the secretary indicated that we are in the common period and if their comments need to be made on regulations, now is the time to make those comments known and he also indicated that he's going to be seriously considering all of those comments and there's no reason to believe that he -- that he won't. so mr. chairman, thank you for giving the witnesses, the secretary and our panel the opportunity to comment on the -- on the regulations.
we did a lot of work to enact the -- every student succeed's act, bipartisan effort and hopefully can continue to go forward in a bipartisan manner. >> i thank the gentleman and letter and spirit of his comments. we both sat at the final negotiating table and the fact of the matter is the law is the law and it was very clear on supplement and from the testimony even yet today as we heard for several years now to do so otherwise than current law is to have a high likelihood of hurting those very kids that we are supposed to be helping. with that, i want to thank each one of you for your leadership, both locally and nationally and i'm inspired an motivated as well as the members are by the words we heard today and the leadership that you provide. we do hope and expect that that leadership will continue because
it's going to be needed now in the imlementation as well as the oversight phases of what is a promising law as dr. rhodes said. that's inspiring teachers at the local level to continue teaching and maybe even come back to the profession and what a great sign that is and continue to be. i also agree with dr. scott, the deadline is august 1st. those of you at the witness table who are represented by associations, those associations will definitely be making comments for sure, but that does not prohibit any of you as individuals or your counterparts or peers as individuals from making comments as well. we all heard how often dr. king just today used the term feedback and we should make sure there's no excuse on the table
for him, for us or anybody in this process to not have that feedback, and so again, august 1st, being the deadline and the time is now and as leaders i hope you and your counterparts and peers step up. with that see nothing further business before the committee, this committee stands adjourn. [inaudible conversations]
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