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Commissioner's Weekly Update - September 14, 2012

New Weekly Update:

In an effort to provide superintendents, principals, and charter school leaders with regular and streamlined communications, we are launching a new weekly email update. This new communication tool was developed in response to results from our customer satisfaction survey demonstrating your desire to receive clearer communications from the Department. These updates will bring you up to speed on the work of the Department, share key information and resources, and remind you of upcoming events and deadlines.

One of our core objectives as an agency is to deliver outstanding customer service. We welcome your feedback and ideas on how this new update can best assist you. Please feel free to email us at Thanks!

MCAS & Accountability Results - Coming Next Week:

The Department will release the results of the 2012 MCAS exams next week in two phases. We will release the statewide results on Monday, Sept. 17 and the school and district MCAS results and accountability reports on Wednesday, Sept. 19. As a reminder, all MCAS data are strictly embargoed until the Department officially releases it to the public.

In February 2012, Massachusetts was granted a waiver from certain provisions of the federal No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). Accordingly, several features have been eliminated or replaced - including the NCLB goal of 100% proficient by 2014, the NCLB accountability status labels, and Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP). New features include our goal to reduce proficiency gaps by half by 2017, a unified system of accountability and assistance levels for all schools, and a new performance measure that incorporates student growth and other indicators. To learn more, see the Waiver Q&A online.

Updates on ESE's Core Work:

RETELL: All core academic teachers of English language learner (ELL) students, and building supervisors who supervise such teachers, must earn a Sheltered English Immersion (SEI) Teacher or Administrator Endorsement by July 1, 2016. The training for the endorsement is starting this year for approximately 3,000 of the nearly 26,000 core academic teachers who are responsible for teaching one or more ELL students and must meet this new requirement. For more info, please see the Aug. 27 memo at

Educator Evaluation: During the 2012-13 school year, Race to the Top districts are required to implement new educator evaluation training requirements. Other districts must implement the new educator evaluation system and training requirements for the 2013-14 school year. Please send your completed agreement to the Department at

2011 MA Curriculum Frameworks: This year, school districts are beginning to implement the new curriculum frameworks in English Language Arts & Literacy Download PDF Document  Download MS WORD Document and Mathematics Download PDF Document  Download MS WORD Document, which incorporate the Common Core State Standards, in anticipation of full implementation of the new standards in 2013-14. Educators are becoming familiar with the shifts and changes in the new frameworks, developing curriculum maps and sequences for when the standards are to be taught, and reviewing current materials for alignment with the new standards. For information on how the state will transition MCAS to the new frameworks, go to

For Your Info:

ESE Staff Updates:

We welcome retired Bedford Public Schools Superintendent Maureen LaCroix, who will be working as a part-time special assistant in the Commissioner's office on a number of projects, including the roll-out of the RETELL training. Maureen can be reached at 781-338-3110 or


Subscriber Information: Superintendents, principals, and charter school leaders will receive the update automatically. For others wishing to subscribe, send an email to with the following information in the body of the email: subscribe ESEUpdate Your Name. (Example: subscribe ESEUpdate John Smith) To unsubscribe, send an email to the same address with the following information in the body: unsubscribe ESEUpdate Your Name. (Example: unsubscribe ESEUpdate John Smith)

Last Updated: September 14, 2012
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