Summer 2022
Forum in Review

Introduction

State Budgets:
A Half-Year Check-In

Real Solutions for
Ending Homelessness

The Crisis in Ukraine

Education:
Recovering from COVID Chaos

Education:
Recovering from COVID Chaos

Patrick M. Shields, PhDExecutive Director
Learning Policy Institute
Penny Schwinn, PhDCommissioner of Education
Tennessee

 

Assess and Address the Challenges

COVID’s Impact on the Educator

Strategies to Support the Educator Workforce

Boosting Salaries

Teacher salaries are still only 80% of what similar college graduates earn as the state-by-state map of salaries indicates; therefore, increasing salaries is a key recommendation from the Learning Policy Institute.

Beyond salaries, Dr. Shields stressed the value of innovative programs designed to bring more people into the teaching profession through non-traditional routes; for example, via residencies modeled on medical residencies, a strategy being employed in several states.

Other states have evolved successful “Grow Your Own” programs, which engage local community people who know the local culture and mores, and provide supports for teacher training. Service-scholarship and loan forgiveness programs are active in some states to facilitate people entering the profession.

 

Stemming Attrition

Even when improved salaries and support pathways effectively engage people in the profession, the next hurdle is to retain them. Almost 90% of new teacher hires are to replace someone who has left the profession. Unfortunately, poorer educational outcomes are associated with having new, less experienced teachers.

Some of the strategies to stem teacher attrition and improve retention include mentoring programs and induction training to assist new educators. Educators, like other professionals, need opportunities to learn, grow, and collaborate; they need a career path. And whether they are veterans or beginners, all teachers stress the key value of supportive and inclusive school leadership.

 

Funding Effective Programs

Most states have access to billions of dollars that, when appropriately allocated, can produce significant, measureable outcomes improvements, Dr. Shields reminded the Forum. Such programs include:

Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER): $189 Billion

Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund (GEER): $4.3 Billion

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF): $75.5 Billion

State and Local Fiscal Relief Fund (SLFRF): $350 Billion

Best for All: Tennessee’s Big Bold Education Policy

Dr. Penny Schwinn, who serves as Commissioner of Tennessee’s Department of Education, introduced the state’s “Big Bold Education” policy. She acknowledged that the challenge is translating this mission into the classroom at a time when 4% of the lowest performing children are not even attending school. She noted that billions of dollars from federal COVID funding have been allocated to education and she stressed the critical need to demonstrate measureable outcomes from these expenditures.

“Best for All. We will set all students on a path to success.” The state’s Big Bold Education Policy is captured in this title and mission. It relies on 3 pillars with aspirational mission statements to bring its motto to life: student readiness, academics, and educators.

Student Readiness

Tennessee public schools will be equipped to serve the academic and non-academic needs of all students in their career pathways.

Academics

All Tennessee students will have access to a high-quality education, no matter where they live.

Educators

Tennessee will set a new path for the education profession and be the top state in which to become and remain a teacher and leader for all.

 

Constant engagement is key to driving the program forward, Dr. Schwinn reported. There are eight engagement teams that have made 500 in-person school visits this year across 147 districts. All superintendents review progress with their districts once a month. Every district and state agency is held accountable for results.

5 Programs that Deliver Results

Under Dr. Schwinn’s leadership, and with committed participation from all stakeholders, the state has implemented a five-pronged approach to improving educational outcomes that is delivering dramatic results.

 

1. TISA: Tennessee Investment in Student Achievement

The Tennessee Investment in Student Achievement, or TISA, ensures universal access and implementation of high-quality education. The goals of the program are: to prepare each high school graduate to succeed in the post-secondary program or career of the graduate’s choice; to provide each student with the resources needed to succeed, regardless of the student’s individual circumstances; and to empower each student to read proficiently by third grade.

The law sets a base funding rate of $6,860 per pupil, then distributes additional funding for students who are from economically disadvantaged families, have unique learning needs, or live in rural or impoverished communities. The state’s 2022-23 budget includes $125 million more for teacher pay — equivalent to a 3% raise — and $500 million in one-time funding for career and technical education for students in middle and high school, plus money for early literacy programs, summer camps, and charter school facilities.

 

2. Reading 360

Under this $125 million early literacy program, every teacher is drilled on phonetics-based reading and strategies to support literacy. The program has had the greatest impact, Dr. Schwinn reported, with student achievement data three points higher than pre-COVID. The program also engages families; 125 families have signed up for text messaging about reading performance and regularly receive books. Participating parents report 90%+ satisfaction with the program.

 

3. TN ALL Corps

The Tennessee Accelerating Literacy and Learning Corps brings high-dosage tutoring to 150 students. Strong, experienced tutors such as retired teachers or highly trained current teachers tutor small three-student groups. The program not only increased English Language Arts (ELA) outcomes by 6-11 points, but also helped reduced teacher shortages as this became a pathway for teacher engagement.

Innovative programming such as a micro grant using COVID funds provided one-on-one tutoring for 15,000 students who are most at need of intervention. Currently, 36.4% of Tennessee students are meeting grade level expectations in English language arts, proficiency gains were reflected in all tested grades, and overall proficiency has largely returned to pre-pandemic levels.

 

4. Innovative High School Models

The state invested $30 million in the Innovative High School Models program to encourage school districts to reimagine the possible and create innovative, high-impact high school experiences for all students. The program develops strategic partnerships with local business and industry in local communities that will boost student readiness and prepare high schoolers for jobs and careers in their local communities.

 

5. Grow Your Own

The state’s Grow Your Own program is an apprenticeship program that uses Department of Labor funds to provide innovative, no-cost pathways to the teaching profession. As a federally recognized apprentice program, federal funding provides participants a living wage and free college through a partnership with the University of Tennessee. The apprenticeship program also can pay for childcare, car repairs that are essential for getting to school, and other supports.

The Grow Your Own initiative supports hundreds of individuals to become teachers for free. The school districts identify people employed in various non-teaching positions who wish to become qualified teachers. The objective is to remove barriers to the teaching profession and increase access to and success in teaching.

The length of the training depends on the individual’s prior experience. They are assigned a mentor or Master Teacher for three years and receive free tutoring to pass credentialing exams. Participants are paid while they receive training. In the course of two years, the program filled 650 of the 2000 open teaching positions, and currently, only 300 remain open.  Formerly, 90% of districts reported vacancies; today that is down to 40%.

 

Dr. Schwinn: concluded her remarks, noting that “We have to recover quickly. We cannot think that it will take five years to recover from COVID learning loss. We have set a target to get back to pre-pandemic levels withinin 18 months.”

 

Discussion

Moderated by

Tom Finneran

Presenter Biographies

Patrick M. Shields, PhD

Shields brings to LPI more than 25 years of experience managing large-scale social science research projects. Prior to joining LPI, he was the Executive Director of SRI Education, where he also served as Research Director for Teaching and California’s Future, a 15-year initiative to track the quality of the teacher workforce that contributed to legislation to ensure high-quality teaching for all of California’s students. Shields has also overseen many NSF- and foundation-supported studies of STEM opportunities for disadvantaged children, including serving as the co-principal investigator of the Science Activation Lab, a national research and design effort to dramatically strengthen learning.

Shields received a Ph.D. and an M.A. in Educational Policy from Stanford University, an M.A. in Educational Administration from Columbia University, and a B.A. in Romance Languages from Amherst College. He recently served on the National Academy of Sciences Committee on Strengthening Science Education through a Teacher Learning Continuum.

Penny Schwinn, PhD

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With thanks to our guest speakers, all slides presented at the live Forum are available on request. If you would like a copy, please contact us.

CONTACT US

Senate Presidents’ Forum

579 Broadway

Hastings-on-Hudson, NY 10706

 

914-693-1818   •   info@senpf.com

Copyright © 2022 Senate Presidents' Forum. All rights reserved.

Summer 2022
Forum in Review

Introduction

State Budgets:
A Half-Year Check-In

Real Solutions for
Ending Homelessness

The Crisis in Ukraine

Education:
Recovering from COVID Chaos

Education:
Recovering from COVID Chaos

Patrick M. Shields, PhDExecutive Director
Learning Policy Institute
Penny Schwinn, PhDCommissioner of Education
Tennessee

Assess and Address the Challenges

COVID’s Impact on the Educator

Strategies to Support the Educator Workforce

Boosting Salaries

Teacher salaries are still only 80% of what similar college graduates earn as the state-by-state map of salaries indicates; therefore, increasing salaries is a key recommendation from the Learning Policy Institute.

Beyond salaries, Dr. Shields stressed the value of innovative programs designed to bring more people into the teaching profession through non-traditional routes; for example, via residencies modeled on medical residencies, a strategy being employed in several states.

Other states have evolved successful “Grow Your Own” programs, which engage local community people who know the local culture and mores, and provide supports for teacher training. Service-scholarship and loan forgiveness programs are active in some states to facilitate people entering the profession.

 

Stemming Attrition

Even when improved salaries and support pathways effectively engage people in the profession, the next hurdle is to retain them. Almost 90% of new teacher hires are to replace someone who has left the profession. Unfortunately, poorer educational outcomes are associated with having new, less experienced teachers.

Some of the strategies to stem teacher attrition and improve retention include mentoring programs and induction training to assist new educators. Educators, like other professionals, need opportunities to learn, grow, and collaborate; they need a career path. And whether they are veterans or beginners, all teachers stress the key value of supportive and inclusive school leadership.

 

Funding Effective Programs

Most states have access to billions of dollars that, when appropriately allocated, can produce significant, measureable outcomes improvements, Dr. Shields reminded the Forum. Such programs include:

Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER): $189 Billion

Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund (GEER): $4.3 Billion

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF): $75.5 Billion

State and Local Fiscal Relief Fund (SLFRF): $350 Billion

Best for All: Tennessee’s Big Bold Education Policy

Dr. Penny Schwinn, who serves as Commissioner of Tennessee’s Department of Education, introduced the state’s “Big Bold Education” policy. She acknowledged that the challenge is translating this mission into the classroom at a time when 4% of the lowest performing children are not even attending school. She noted that billions of dollars from federal COVID funding have been allocated to education and she stressed the critical need to demonstrate measureable outcomes from these expenditures.

“Best for All. We will set all students on a path to success.” The state’s Big Bold Education Policy is captured in this title and mission. It relies on 3 pillars with aspirational mission statements to bring its motto to life: student readiness, academics, and educators.

Student Readiness

Tennessee public schools will be equipped to serve the academic and non-academic needs of all students in their career pathways.

Academics

All Tennessee students will have access to a high-quality education, no matter where they live.

Educators

Tennessee will set a new path for the education profession and be the top state in which to become and remain a teacher and leader for all.

 

Constant engagement is key to driving the program forward, Dr. Schwinn reported. There are eight engagement teams that have made 500 in-person school visits this year across 147 districts. All superintendents review progress with their districts once a month. Every district and state agency is held accountable for results.

5 Programs that Deliver Results

Under Dr. Schwinn’s leadership, and with committed participation from all stakeholders, the state has implemented a five-pronged approach to improving educational outcomes that is delivering dramatic results.

 

1. TISA: Tennessee Investment in Student Achievement

The Tennessee Investment in Student Achievement, or TISA, ensures universal access and implementation of high-quality education. The goals of the program are: to prepare each high school graduate to succeed in the post-secondary program or career of the graduate’s choice; to provide each student with the resources needed to succeed, regardless of the student’s individual circumstances; and to empower each student to read proficiently by third grade.

The law sets a base funding rate of $6,860 per pupil, then distributes additional funding for students who are from economically disadvantaged families, have unique learning needs, or live in rural or impoverished communities. The state’s 2022-23 budget includes $125 million more for teacher pay — equivalent to a 3% raise — and $500 million in one-time funding for career and technical education for students in middle and high school, plus money for early literacy programs, summer camps, and charter school facilities.

 

2. Reading 360

Under this $125 million early literacy program, every teacher is drilled on phonetics-based reading and strategies to support literacy. The program has had the greatest impact, Dr. Schwinn reported, with student achievement data three points higher than pre-COVID. The program also engages families; 125 families have signed up for text messaging about reading performance and regularly receive books. Participating parents report 90%+ satisfaction with the program.

 

3. TN ALL Corps

The Tennessee Accelerating Literacy and Learning Corps brings high-dosage tutoring to 150 students. Strong, experienced tutors such as retired teachers or highly trained current teachers tutor small three-student groups. The program not only increased English Language Arts (ELA) outcomes by 6-11 points, but also helped reduced teacher shortages as this became a pathway for teacher engagement.

Innovative programming such as a micro grant using COVID funds provided one-on-one tutoring for 15,000 students who are most at need of intervention. Currently, 36.4% of Tennessee students are meeting grade level expectations in English language arts, proficiency gains were reflected in all tested grades, and overall proficiency has largely returned to pre-pandemic levels.

 

4. Innovative High School Models

The state invested $30 million in the Innovative High School Models program to encourage school districts to reimagine the possible and create innovative, high-impact high school experiences for all students. The program develops strategic partnerships with local business and industry in local communities that will boost student readiness and prepare high schoolers for jobs and careers in their local communities.

 

5. Grow Your Own

The state’s Grow Your Own program is an apprenticeship program that uses Department of Labor funds to provide innovative, no-cost pathways to the teaching profession. As a federally recognized apprentice program, federal funding provides participants a living wage and free college through a partnership with the University of Tennessee. The apprenticeship program also can pay for childcare, car repairs that are essential for getting to school, and other supports.

The Grow Your Own initiative supports hundreds of individuals to become teachers for free. The school districts identify people employed in various non-teaching positions who wish to become qualified teachers. The objective is to remove barriers to the teaching profession and increase access to and success in teaching.

The length of the training depends on the individual’s prior experience. They are assigned a mentor or Master Teacher for three years and receive free tutoring to pass credentialing exams. Participants are paid while they receive training. In the course of two years, the program filled 650 of the 2000 open teaching positions, and currently, only 300 remain open.  Formerly, 90% of districts reported vacancies; today that is down to 40%.

 

Dr. Schwinn: concluded her remarks, noting that “We have to recover quickly. We cannot think that it will take five years to recover from COVID learning loss. We have set a target to get back to pre-pandemic levels withinin 18 months.”

 

Discussion

Moderated by

Tom Finneran

Presenter Biographies

Patrick M. Shields, PhD

Shields brings to LPI more than 25 years of experience managing large-scale social science research projects. Prior to joining LPI, he was the Executive Director of SRI Education, where he also served as Research Director for Teaching and California’s Future, a 15-year initiative to track the quality of the teacher workforce that contributed to legislation to ensure high-quality teaching for all of California’s students. Shields has also overseen many NSF- and foundation-supported studies of STEM opportunities for disadvantaged children, including serving as the co-principal investigator of the Science Activation Lab, a national research and design effort to dramatically strengthen learning.

Shields received a Ph.D. and an M.A. in Educational Policy from Stanford University, an M.A. in Educational Administration from Columbia University, and a B.A. in Romance Languages from Amherst College. He recently served on the National Academy of Sciences Committee on Strengthening Science Education through a Teacher Learning Continuum.

Penny Schwinn, PhD

CONTACT US

Senate Presidents’ Forum

579 Broadway

Hastings-on-Hudson, NY 10706

 

914-693-1818   •   info@senpf.com

Copyright © 2022 Senate Presidents' Forum. All rights reserved.

Education:
Recovering from COVID Chaos

Patrick M. Shields, PhDExecutive Director
Learning Policy Institute
Penny Schwinn, PhDCommissioner of Education
Tennessee

Assess and Address the Challenges

COVID’s Impact on the Educator

Strategies to Support the Educator Workforce

Boosting Salaries

Teacher salaries are still only 80% of what similar college graduates earn as the state-by-state map of salaries indicates; therefore, increasing salaries is a key recommendation from the Learning Policy Institute.

Beyond salaries, Dr. Shields stressed the value of innovative programs designed to bring more people into the teaching profession through non-traditional routes; for example, via residencies modeled on medical residencies, a strategy being employed in several states.

Other states have evolved successful “Grow Your Own” programs, which engage local community people who know the local culture and mores, and provide supports for teacher training. Service-scholarship and loan forgiveness programs are active in some states to facilitate people entering the profession.

 

Stemming Attrition

Even when improved salaries and support pathways effectively engage people in the profession, the next hurdle is to retain them. Almost 90% of new teacher hires are to replace someone who has left the profession. Unfortunately, poorer educational outcomes are associated with having new, less experienced teachers.

Some of the strategies to stem teacher attrition and improve retention include mentoring programs and induction training to assist new educators. Educators, like other professionals, need opportunities to learn, grow, and collaborate; they need a career path. And whether they are veterans or beginners, all teachers stress the key value of supportive and inclusive school leadership.

 

Funding Effective Programs

Most states have access to billions of dollars that, when appropriately allocated, can produce significant, measureable outcomes improvements, Dr. Shields reminded the Forum. Such programs include:

Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER):
$189 Billion

Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund (GEER): $4.3 Billion

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF): $75.5 Billion

State and Local Fiscal Relief Fund (SLFRF): $350 Billion

Best for All: Tennessee’s Big Bold Education Policy

Dr. Penny Schwinn, who serves as Commissioner of Tennessee’s Department of Education, introduced the state’s “Big Bold Education” policy. She acknowledged that the challenge is translating this mission into the classroom at a time when 4% of the lowest performing children are not even attending school. She noted that billions of dollars from federal COVID funding have been allocated to education and she stressed the critical need to demonstrate measureable outcomes from these expenditures.

“Best for All. We will set all students on a path to success.” The state’s Big Bold Education Policy is captured in this title and mission. It relies on 3 pillars with aspirational mission statements to bring its motto to life: student readiness, academics, and educators.

Student Readiness

Tennessee public schools will be equipped to serve the academic and non-academic needs of all students in their career pathways.

Academics

All Tennessee students will have access to a high-quality education, no matter where they live.

Educators

Tennessee will set a new path for the education profession and be the top state in which to become and remain a teacher and leader for all.

 

Constant engagement is key to driving the program forward, Dr. Schwinn reported. There are eight engagement teams that have made 500 in-person school visits this year across 147 districts. All superintendents review progress with their districts once a month. Every district and state agency is held accountable for results.

5 Programs that Deliver Results

Under Dr. Schwinn’s leadership, and with committed participation from all stakeholders, the state has implemented a five-pronged approach to improving educational outcomes that is delivering dramatic results.

 

1. TISA: Tennessee Investment in Student Achievement

The Tennessee Investment in Student Achievement, or TISA, ensures universal access and implementation of high-quality education. The goals of the program are: to prepare each high school graduate to succeed in the post-secondary program or career of the graduate’s choice; to provide each student with the resources needed to succeed, regardless of the student’s individual circumstances; and to empower each student to read proficiently by third grade.

The law sets a base funding rate of $6,860 per pupil, then distributes additional funding for students who are from economically disadvantaged families, have unique learning needs, or live in rural or impoverished communities. The state’s 2022-23 budget includes $125 million more for teacher pay — equivalent to a 3% raise — and $500 million in one-time funding for career and technical education for students in middle and high school, plus money for early literacy programs, summer camps, and charter school facilities.

 

2. Reading 360

Under this $125 million early literacy program, every teacher is drilled on phonetics-based reading and strategies to support literacy. The program has had the greatest impact, Dr. Schwinn reported, with student achievement data three points higher than pre-COVID. The program also engages families; 125 families have signed up for text messaging about reading performance and regularly receive books. Participating parents report 90%+ satisfaction with the program.

 

3. TN ALL Corps

The Tennessee Accelerating Literacy and Learning Corps brings high-dosage tutoring to 150 students. Strong, experienced tutors such as retired teachers or highly trained current teachers tutor small three-student groups. The program not only increased English Language Arts (ELA) outcomes by 6-11 points, but also helped reduced teacher shortages as this became a pathway for teacher engagement.

Innovative programming such as a micro grant using COVID funds provided one-on-one tutoring for 15,000 students who are most at need of intervention. Currently, 36.4% of Tennessee students are meeting grade level expectations in English language arts, proficiency gains were reflected in all tested grades, and overall proficiency has largely returned to pre-pandemic levels.

 

4. Innovative High School Models

The state invested $30 million in the Innovative High School Models program to encourage school districts to reimagine the possible and create innovative, high-impact high school experiences for all students. The program develops strategic partnerships with local business and industry in local communities that will boost student readiness and prepare high schoolers for jobs and careers in their local communities.

 

5. Grow Your Own

The state’s Grow Your Own program is an apprenticeship program that uses Department of Labor funds to provide innovative, no-cost pathways to the teaching profession. As a federally recognized apprentice program, federal funding provides participants a living wage and free college through a partnership with the University of Tennessee. The apprenticeship program also can pay for childcare, car repairs that are essential for getting to school, and other supports.

The Grow Your Own initiative supports hundreds of individuals to become teachers for free. The school districts identify people employed in various non-teaching positions who wish to become qualified teachers. The objective is to remove barriers to the teaching profession and increase access to and success in teaching.

The length of the training depends on the individual’s prior experience. They are assigned a mentor or Master Teacher for three years and receive free tutoring to pass credentialing exams. Participants are paid while they receive training. In the course of two years, the program filled 650 of the 2000 open teaching positions, and currently, only 300 remain open.  Formerly, 90% of districts reported vacancies; today that is down to 40%.

 

Dr. Schwinn: concluded her remarks, noting that “We have to recover quickly. We cannot think that it will take five years to recover from COVID learning loss. We have set a target to get back to pre-pandemic levels withinin 18 months.”

 

Discussion

Moderated by

Tom Finneran

Presenter Biographies

Patrick M. Shields, PhD

Shields brings to LPI more than 25 years of experience managing large-scale social science research projects. Prior to joining LPI, he was the Executive Director of SRI Education, where he also served as Research Director for Teaching and California’s Future, a 15-year initiative to track the quality of the teacher workforce that contributed to legislation to ensure high-quality teaching for all of California’s students. Shields has also overseen many NSF- and foundation-supported studies of STEM opportunities for disadvantaged children, including serving as the co-principal investigator of the Science Activation Lab, a national research and design effort to dramatically strengthen learning.

Shields received a Ph.D. and an M.A. in Educational Policy from Stanford University, an M.A. in Educational Administration from Columbia University, and a B.A. in Romance Languages from Amherst College. He recently served on the National Academy of Sciences Committee on Strengthening Science Education through a Teacher Learning Continuum.

Penny Schwinn, PhD

CONTACT US

Senate Presidents’ Forum

579 Broadway

Hastings-on-Hudson, NY 10706

914-693-1818   •   info@senpf.com

Copyright © 2022 Senate Presidents' Forum. All rights reserved.