Policy Briefs & Special Reports

EPLC President Ron Cowell Provides Testimony on ”Special Education – Challenges Facing Pennsylvania’s School Districts”

On January 23, 2013, EPLC President Ron Cowell provided testimony to the Pennsylvania Senate Majority Policy Committee on “Special Education – Challenges Facing Pennsylvania School Districts”.

Full Agenda:

9:00 a.m.  Opening remarks — Senator Edwin B. Erickson, Chairman
9:05 a.m. Upper Darby School District (Delaware County)
Louis F. DeVlieger, Superintendent
Mary Cedrone, Director of Special Education Services
Daniel P. McGarry, Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction
Edward J. Smith, Director of Business Management
Testimony
Attachment 1
Attachment 2
9:30 a.m. Lewisburg Area School District (Union County)
Mark DiRocco, Ph.D., Superintendent
Attachment
9:45 a.m.  PA Association of School Administrators
Sherri L. Smith, Ed.D., Superintendent Lower Dauphin School District (Dauphin County)
10:00 a.m.  The Education Policy and Leadership Center
Ronald Cowell, President
10:15 a.m.  North Allegheny School District (Allegheny County)
Arleen Wheat, Ed.D., Assistant Superintendent for Special Education and Pupil Services
10:30 a.m. Education Law Center of Philadelphia
Rhonda Brownstein, Esquire, Executive Director
Attachment
10:45 a.m.  Closing remarks and Adjournment

 

2012 Education Issues Poll

The Education Policy and Leadership Center (EPLC) has released the results of its  Education Issues Poll conducted in November 2012.  Poll results show Pennsylvania voters continue to overwhelmingly value public education, support an increase in state funding for Pennsylvania’s 500 school districts, and support public school choices, while opposing the use of taxpayer funds for private school tuition.  The polling, commissioned by EPLC, was conducted by Susquehanna Polling and Research, which is based in Harrisburg.

 

2011 Education Issues Poll

The Education Policy and Leadership Center (EPLC) has released poll results that show Pennsylvania voters overwhelmingly value public education, support an increase in state funding for the 500 school districts statewide, and support public school choices, while opposing the use of taxpayer funds for private school tuition. The polling, commissioned by EPLC, was conducted by Susquehanna Polling and Research, which is based in Harrisburg.


Listing of Briefs & Special Reports

Funding Basic Education in Pennsylvania: A Status Report
The Pennsylvania School Funding Campaign has issued Funding Basic Education in Pennsylvania: A Status Report (Winter 2011) as a resource for members of the Pennsylvania legislature and others. This report is especially meant to help inform the 2011-12 education funding budget debate that the legislators and Governor Corbett will be involved in over the next several months. The report is available in color and b/w versions.

Pennsylvania Education Finance Primer
The Pennsylvania Education Finance Primer (November 2006) explains how Pennsylvania funds its public school system, with primary emphasis on state and local financing. The Primer provides historical background and briefly describes each of the major sources of funding. It is designed to help policymakers and potential policymakers understand this complex $19.6 billion system so they can better address critical policy issues discussed at the end of the Primer. It is designed as well for parents and other citizens to empower them to participate in decision-making on these issues.

The November 2006 edition of the Primer reviews the property tax relief legislation – Special Session Act 1 of 2006 – enacted by the legislature and its subsequent impact on education funding. The Primer also addresses new costing-out research underway in Pennsylvania, as well as policy considerations for the next legislative session.

Strengthening School Leadership: Preparing and Supporting Superintendents and Principals (PDF) (October 2006) reviews the status of district and school leadership and recommends policy changes to enhance the quality of that leadership. The report makes recommendations for state policymakers, universities, and school districts designed to strengthen preparation and professional development for superintendents and principals. Further, the report recognize that effectively carrying out the demands placed on today’s school administrators requires well-functioning leadership teams.
(Requires the free Adobe Reader)

A Rising Tide: The Current State of Higher Education in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (PDF) (April 2006) shows that, overall, Pennsylvanians enjoy increasing access to higher education. However, a marked gap between educational attainment in majority and minority populations remains, young adults in rural communities remain at significant disadvantage, and the state’s shortage of technically proficient workers is likely a result of inadequate secondary education – particularly in the areas of science and mathematics. The report identifies important higher education policy issues that policymakers, community leaders, and higher education leaders need to examine together.
(Requires the free Adobe Reader)

Strengthening the Work of School Boards In Pennsylvania (March 2004) makes recommendations for state policymakers, school boards and superintendents, and voters and community leaders about how they can improve the effectiveness of school boards and increase the number of citizens who are motivated and prepared to serve on boards. The report also includes a model Board Code of Conduct and model Governance-Management Compact that can be downloaded as individual documents here.
Also available in PDF format (Requires the free Adobe Reader)

Head of the Class: A Quality Teacher in Every Pennsylvania Classroom (February 2003) makes recommendations for how state policy can increase and support Pennsylvania’s supply of qualified teachers. The report emphasizes that quality teaching is key to student achievement and that the state must act to ensure the presence of a qualified teacher in every Pennsylvania classroom at all times.
Also available in PDF format (Requires the free Adobe Reader)

The EPLC Education Notebook provides a summary of recent education policy news, including legislative activity both in Pennsylvania and nationally, links to new research and reports, and upcoming education-related events. The Notebook is available online and through electronic mail distribution. To receive the EPLC Education Notebook via e-mail, click here.


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