Office of the Commissioner

Commissioner's Weekly Update

2018

April 20, 2018

  • Additional Funding to Support Hurricane Evacuees from Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands
  • Picture of the Week: Student Government Day
  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  • Public Comment Open on Proposed Amendments Related to LOOK Act
  • Reminder on Restraint Reporting
  • ESE Resource Corner: Reports Library
  • For Your Info:
    • Strategic plan for the juvenile justice system
    • Lesson plans on intergenerational engagement

April 13, 2018

  • Massachusetts NAEP Scores Lead the Nation (Again!)
  • Picture of the Week: Tenacity Challenge
  • Professional Development Opportunities on Safe and Supportive Learning Environments
  • April Is the Month of the Military Child
  • Family Engagement External Stakeholders Regional Meetings
  • Spring Early Learning Regional Network Meetings
  • Elementary Principals Network Meetings
  • Computer Science Training Grant
  • Registration Open for July 24–26 Civic Education Institute
  • For Your Info: Message from the Registry of Motor Vehicles

April 6, 2018

  • Commissioner Riley Sworn in at Leading the Nation Celebration
  • Picture of the Week: Swearing In Ceremony
  • Supporting Displaced Students from Puerto Rico
  • DESE's Student Councils Seek New Members for 2018-2019
  • 2018 Massachusetts Green Ribbon Schools Announced
  • Advisory on Emergency Planning and Door Locking
  • New Advisory on Augmentative and Alternative Communication for Special Educators
  • Dropout Prevention and Re-Engagement Gathering
  • School Choice Reminder
  • MCAS Testing Schedule for 2018-2019 Released
  • For Your Info:
    • Two Massachusetts schools recognized by the Spanish Ministry of Education

March 30, 2018

  • A Message from the Acting Commissioner
  • Picture of the Week: Old Sturbridge Village Academy Charter Public School
  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education Meeting
  • Nominate teachers by Sunday for PAEMST
  • FY17 Preliminary Finance Data Available
  • Course on Pre-K and K Standards for SEL and Approaches to Play and Learning
  • ESE Resource Corner: Schools' sample materials for coordinating MCAS test administration
  • For Your Info:
    • Social and emotional learning grant opportunity

March 23, 2018

  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  • Graduation Requirements for Students from Puerto Rico
  • Picture of the Week: LEAP Convening
  • Public Comment on History and Social Science Framework Ends Soon
  • Graduation and Dropout Rate Events
  • 2018 VOCAL School Climate Survey
  • Diverse and Learner-Ready Teachers Initiative
  • ESE Resource Corner: "How Do We Know?" Initiative
  • For Your Info:
    • We the People Middle School Showcase
    • WIDA seeks input on framework
    • Youth Preparedness Council
    • Recent recognitions

March 16, 2018

  • Math and STE Ambassadors
  • Picture of the Week: National School Breakfast Week in Lowell
  • Snow Again!
  • Preparing for MCAS Administration
  • Save the Date for July 24–26 Civic Education Institute
  • VISTA: Last Chance!
  • ESE Resource Corner: Planning for Success

March 9, 2018

  • Massachusetts School Mental Health Consortium
  • Picture of the Week: Commissioner Chester Honored by CCSSO
  • Webinar on Proportionate Share for Special Education Directors
  • Professional Development on Safe and Supportive Learning Environments
  • Annual Arts Conference on April 2
  • 21st Century Community Learning Centers Grants Information Session
  • Grandparents Raising Grandchildren
  • Last Chance for Massachusetts Green Ribbon Schools Competition
  • Hasta La VISTA
  • For Your Info:
    • Resources on student walkouts
    • Integration of computational thinking and elementary math/science

March 2, 2018

  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education Meeting
  • School Safety and Student Activism in the Wake of the Parkland Shooting
  • Picture of the Week: Phoenix Academy Public Charter High School, Lawrence
  • Good News on Graduation and Dropout Rates
  • Accountability and Assistance Advisory Council to Meet
  • VISTA Survey Still Open
  • WIDA Early Years Modules
  • For Your Info:
    • ESE seeking a director of literacy and humanities

February 23, 2018

  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  • Picture of the Week: Skills Capital Grants announcement at Lynn Vocational Technical Institute
  • Presentation on Proportionate Share for Special Education Directors
  • Support Services for Students Who Have Arrived from Puerto Rico
  • VISTA 2018 Survey Window Extended
  • Upcoming Deadline on Circuit Breaker Intent
  • For Your Info:
    • Governance-based strategies for school improvement
    • Massachusetts leads again on Advanced Placement success

February 16, 2018

  • A Message from the Acting Commissioner: Parkland Tragedy
  • Update on Funding and Diplomas for Puerto Rican Students
  • Grants Available for Enhancing Data Use
  • USED Webinars on Funding System Flexibility
  • VISTA 2018 Responses Still Needed
  • Openings on English Learner/Bilingual Education Advisory Council
  • Massachusetts Green Ribbon Schools Competition
  • Registration Open for Statewide Convening on Safe and Supportive Learning Environments
  • Upcoming Deadline - School-Attending Children Report
  • For Your Info:
    • STEM Career Pathway Capacity grants announced
    • Massachusetts Ranks High on School Breakfast Growth
    • Massachusetts Children's Behavioral Health Innovation Awards

February 9, 2018

  • Rural Schools Report
  • Picture of the Week: Holyoke's Morgan School
  • New FAFSA Tool
  • Educators Needed for Arts Curriculum Framework Review
  • USED Announces Flexibility Opportunity for Districts
  • Applications for Planning for Success Training due Friday, February 16
  • VISTA Reminder
  • ESE Resource Corner: Research update
  • Casting Call for Students
  • For Your Info:
    • Lawrence Alliance for Education members announced
    • Massachusetts History Day judges needed
    • Youth Preparedness Council

February 2, 2018

  • New Commissioner Appointed
  • Save the Date - Statewide Convening on Safe and Supportive Learning Environments
  • VISTA Survey Window is Open
  • Student Government Day Will Be Friday, April 6
  • School Choice Reminder
  • For Your Info:
    • Early college update
    • Students honored at Bruins game
    • Online course for early childhood educators

January 26, 2018

  • Commissioner Finalist Interviews and Expected Board Vote
  • Picture of the Week: The Dever School in Boston
  • Board Meeting Recap
  • New Requirement for Districts to Implement a Substance Use-Related Screening Tool
  • FY19 Preliminary Chapter 70 Calculations
  • Guidance for Ensuring the Educational Stability of Students in Foster Care
  • Massachusetts Green Ribbon Schools Competition
  • Lead in School Drinking Water Assistance Program
  • For Your Info:
    • New Southbridge receiver
    • Preventing and Addressing Bias-Based Incidents

January 19, 2018

  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  • Commissioner Finalists
  • Advanced Placement Exam Fee Subsidies
  • Revision of the Massachusetts History and Social Science Curriculum Framework
  • Substance Use Prevention Education Training for Elementary and Middle Schools
  • Including Data from Commonwealth Virtual Schools for the School-Attending Children Report
  • Planning for Success Training Opportunities
  • ESE Resource Corner: New research on dual enrollment
  • For Your Info
    • Massachusetts tops in EdWeek's "Quality Counts"
    • New Metco, Inc. CEO
    • Alternative structured learning time programs

January 12, 2018

  • Update on Commissioner's Search
  • Alternative Structured Learning Day Programs
  • U.S. Department of Education Grants 1 Percent Waiver Request
  • Last Chance to Be Eligible for State and Federal Discounts for Fiber Upgrades
  • VISTA Survey Coming
  • Guidelines for Preschool and Kindergarten Learning Experiences
  • Student Government Day Will Be Friday, April 6
  • Charter School Waitlist Report Update
  • ESE Resource Corner: New policy brief available on class size in Massachusetts
  • For Your Info
    • Grants to help students from Puerto Rico

January 5, 2018

  • MCAS Grade 10 Field Test Assignments
  • For Your Info: Intergenerational grant opportunity

2017

December 22, 2017

  • Commissioner Search Update and Board Recap
  • Information on the LOOK Act
  • Serving Students from Post-Hurricane Puerto Rico
  • Webinar and Regional Networking on Safe and Supportive Learning Environments
  • Elementary Principals Network Meetings
  • Early Learning Program Quality Workgroup
  • Program Reconstruction Meetings about Approved Private Schools
  • 2018 E-rate Filing Deadlines
  • Qualified Zone Academy Bond Program Update
  • Save the Date for LEAP Convening
  • For Your Info
    • Fifteen school building projects advance
    • School design institutes
  • Note

December 15, 2017

  • Board to Meet
  • Picture of the Week
  • Culturally Responsive Holiday Celebrations
  • LOOK Act
  • 2017 School & District Report Cards
  • Quick Reference Guides to the 2017 Mathematics Curriculum Framework
  • Upcoming Twitter Chat on Standards-Based Learning in Mathematics
  • Student Government Day Will Be Friday, April 6, 2018
  • ESE Resource Corner: List of state holidays
  • For Your Info:
    • Advanced manufacturing program for adult students
    • Operation Prevention Video Challenge

December 8, 2017

  • Hiring Displaced Puerto Rican Educators
  • District Testing Mode Decisions
  • Coordinating Federal Grant Programs to Improve Student Learning
  • Resource Reallocation and District Action Reports (RADAR)
  • Accountability and Assistance Advisory Council to Meet
  • For Your Info:
    • Summer opportunity

December 1, 2017

  • New Schedule for Weekly Update
  • Board Meeting Recap
  • Tuition for Virtual Schools
  • Students from Puerto Rico
  • Picture of the Week: Principal Partners
  • Influenza Information
  • Updated Guidelines on Implementing SEL Curricula
  • Updated 2017-2018 Statewide Testing Schedule
  • 2015 PISA Collaborative Problem Solving Results
  • ESE Resource Corner: Help families save money for both K-12 and college expenses
  • For Your Info:
    • LOOK Act
    • Save the date for conference on bias-based incidents
    • Profile in Courage Essay Contest

November 17, 2017

  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  • Picture of the Week: SkillsUSA in Washington, D.C.
  • New Phase of Lawrence Receivership
  • Resources for Supporting LGBTQ Students
  • Improved Office of Planning and Research Website
  • New Associate Commissioner for Statewide System of Support
  • Upcoming Deadlines: Charter School End-of-Year Financial Report
  • Note: No Update Next Week

November 10, 2017

  • Department Website to Be Down
  • A Note from the Acting Commissioner
  • Aid for Families Fleeing Puerto Rico
  • Spring MCAS High School Field Tests and Question Tryouts
  • Reminder: New Policy Brief Available on Teacher Equity Gaps
  • Chapter 74 Career/Vocational and Technical Education Supply and Demand Study
  • Identifying Department of Children and Families Social Workers

November 3, 2017

  • Job Description Posted for Next Commissioner
  • Lawrence Educator Receives Milken Award
  • Middle Schools Substance Use Prevention Initiative
  • Board and Commission Training
  • School Survey Results from Massachusetts School Building Authority
  • Programme for International Student Assessment
  • Digital Connections Partnership Schools Grants Available for Wi-Fi

October 27, 2017

  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education Meetings
  • The ABCs of Success in High School and Beyond
  • Springfield Principal Honored
  • Graduation Requirements for High School Students from Puerto Rico
  • Online Course for Early Childhood Educators
  • ESSA Changes Related to the "Highly Qualified" Designation and Parental Notifications
  • Digital Connections Partnership Schools Grants Available for Wi-Fi
  • Recent Changes to the Educator Licensure and Preparation Program Approval Regulations
  • ESE Resource Corner
  • New policy brief available on teacher equity gaps
  • For Your Info:
    • Cyber threat
    • Governor tours early college programs

October 20, 2017

  • Assessment and Accountability Results
  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  • Serving Students from Puerto Rico
  • Dropout Prevention and Re-Engagement Work Group Meeting
  • Southbridge Receiver Job Description Posted
  • Social and Emotional Learning Professional Development Opportunity
  • 2017-2018 U.S. Presidential Scholar Nominations
  • Elementary Principals Network Meetings
  • Special Education Advisory Council Openings
  • Used Computers Available
  • Digital Connections Partnership Schools Grants Available for Wi-Fi
  • Water Testing Available
  • Registration Open for Student Government Day on April 6
  • For Your Info:
    • Computer Science Teachers Association Conference

October 13, 2017

  • Embargoed Release of Assessment and Accountability Data
  • 2017 Annual Dropout and Cohort Graduation Rate Data Ready for Review
  • Grants Available for STEM Career Pathways
  • Free E-rate Webinar Series
  • Digital Connections Partnership Schools Grants Available for Wi-Fi
  • Application Deadline for Parent and Community Advisory Council Extended
  • Resources for Massachusetts' Approved ESSA Plan
  • Skills Capital Grants
  • Exploring the State of Personalized Learning
  • ESE Resource Corner
  • For Your Info:
    • Social studies conference
    • Identifying and remediating reading disabilities
    • "High School Quiz Show"
    • Civics opportunity

October 6, 2017

  • Commissioner Search
  • 2017 MCAS and Accountability Information
  • Early Warning and College Success Webinar
  • Accountability and Assistance Advisory Council to Meet
  • Update on Puerto Rico
  • Recent Changes to the Educator Licensure and Preparation Program Approval Regulations
  • Induction and Mentoring Report
  • ESE Resource Corner
    • Grade-by-grade explanations for the 2017 ELA/Literacy and Mathematics curriculum frameworks
  • For Your Info:
    • Gov. Baker visits Lawrence
    • Clean Energy Day opportunity
    • Webinar on evaluating professional development

September 29, 2017

  • National Blue Ribbon Schools
  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education Meeting
  • Welcoming Students from Puerto Rico
  • "I Came Here to Learn"
  • FY18 Digital Connections Partnership Schools Grant Webinars
  • Community Forum in Abington
  • Districts' Testing Mode Decisions Due October 13
  • Computer Science-STEM Opportunity
  • Advanced Placement Results
  • Two Charter School Proposals Move to Next Phase

September 22, 2017

  • State ESSA Plan Approved
  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  • Supporting Students in Military Families
  • Special Education Leadership
  • Digital Connections Initiative: K-12 Upgrade Webinar
  • Competitive FY18 Safe and Supportive Schools Grant
  • Online Course for Early Childhood Educators
  • Social and Emotional Learning Professional Development Opportunity
  • Openings on Arts Education Advisory Council and the Racial Imbalance Advisory Council
  • Elementary Principals Network Meetings
  • ESE Resource Corner:
    • Quick reference guides to the 2017 Mathematics Curriculum Framework

September 15, 2017

  • Reminder about Directory Administration
  • 2017 Principals of the Year
  • History Teacher of the Year Becomes a National Finalist
  • Chapter 74 New Program Applications
  • Substance Use Prevention Education Training for Middle Schools
  • 2017-18 Restraint Data Collection Tool Now Open
  • ESE Resource Corner
    • Highlighting strong work in Framingham
  • For Your Info:
    • Poetry Out Loud
    • National Assessment Governing Board seeks members
    • Prudential Spirit of Community Awards
    • Staff member recognized

September 8, 2017

  • Guidance on Immigration Enforcement Requests
  • Early Warning Indicator System Data for 2017-18 Available
  • Planning for Success Action Plan Training
  • Openings on Parent and Community Education and Involvement Advisory Council
  • Water Testing Available
  • Back-to-School Materials in Five More Languages
  • Reminder: New Anti-Hazing Collection Procedures Underway
  • For Your Info:
    • Massachusetts History Day
    • Constitution Day
    • Great NorthEast ShakeOut
    • Massachusetts Students' ACT Scores among the Best

September 1, 2017

  • Celebration of Commissioner Chester's Life
  • Restraint Data Collection Update and Reminder
  • Planning for Success Action Plan Training
  • Public Comment Period for the Mass. Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS )
  • For Your Info:
    • Proposed Somerville school to be featured
    • Early education grants
    • Commonwealth Commitment expands
    • Back to school with USED

August 25, 2017

  • A Message from Acting Commissioner Jeff Wulfson
  • Preliminary 2017 Accountability Data
  • New Anti-Hazing Collection Procedures Underway
  • Standard Setting Conference
  • ESE Resource Corner
    • New interactive parent guide to the next-generation MCAS
  • For Your Info:
    • Celebration of Commissioner Chester's life
    • METCO, Inc. seeks a CEO

August 18, 2017

  • Preliminary 2017 MCAS Results
  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education Special Meeting
  • Educator Network Opportunity
  • Celebration of Commissioner Chester's Life
  • For Your Info:
    • New STEM and literacy and humanities leaders
    • Webinar on emergency planning

August 11, 2017

  • Summary Now Available on Changes to Licensure and Educator Preparation Regulations
  • Early Warning Indicator System (EWIS) Reports coming to Edwin
  • Four Groups Hope to Open New Charter Schools
  • Request for Proposals for Adult Education Posted
  • Dropout Prevention and Re-Engagement Network Meeting
  • Proportionate Share Guidance
  • Leading the Nation
  • ESE Resource Corner
    • Revised What to Look For observation guides now available

August 4, 2017

  • Understanding the Impact of Poverty on Student Outcomes
  • Application Materials Released to Support High Quality College and Career Pathways
  • Broadband Upgrade Support Survey
  • For Your Info:
    • Celebration of Commissioner Chester's Life

July 28, 2017

  • Celebration of Commissioner Chester's Life
  • Website Redesign
  • Early Grades Literacy Grant
  • Changes to Licensure Regulations
  • Request for Feedback about School and District Profiles
  • For Your Info:
    • Technology guide
    • Tips on Math Instruction

July 21, 2017

  • Massachusetts High Quality College and Career Pathways Initiative
  • Title IV, Part A: Student Support and Academic Enrichment Allocation Grant Posted
  • FY18 Chapter 70 Information Posted
  • Alternate Assessment Waiver
  • For Your Info:
    • Middle school science teachers wanted for study

July 14, 2017

  • Quick Reference Guides to the 2017 English Language Arts Curriculum Framework
  • Supporting Students who are Homeless or in Foster Care - New Contact Information
  • Special Education Professional Development Series
  • Free Conference on Implementing New Curriculum Frameworks
  • For Your Info:
    • SkillsUSA
    • Edcamp on innovation and design
    • Summer Nights for Youth
    • Strategies for at-risk high school students

July 7, 2017

  • Launching the High Quality College and Career Pathways Initiative
  • Sheltered English Immersion Endorsement Reports

June 30, 2017

  • Message from Acting Commissioner Jeff Wulfson
  • Sheltered English Immersion Endorsement Reports
  • Tiered Systems of Instruction and Support Academies
  • ACCESS for ELLs
  • ESE Resource Corner
    • English Language Arts and Mathematics Curriculum Frameworks
  • For Your Info:
    • Summer Learning Day

June 23, 2017

  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  • Proportionate Share
  • New Advisory on Special Education Law
  • For Your Info:
    • Principals to form unified pK-12 association

June 16, 2017

  • End of Year Message from Commissioner Chester
  • Notable Teachers Recognized at State House
  • Opportunity to Give Input on First Year of Computer-Based Testing
  • Early Warning Indicator System (EWIS) Release Update
  • Celebrating Good Work
  • Title I Equitable Share Data for Private School Services
  • For Your Info:
    • Reminder: Principal and Teacher Advisory Cabinets open for applications
    • Educator preparation report
    • Video recap of administration's school tour

June 9, 2017

  • 2017-18 Testing Schedule Released
  • Seeking Feedback on Guidelines for Implementing Social and Emotional Learning Curricula
  • Principal and Teacher Advisory Cabinets Open for Applications
  • Jacob K. Javits Gifted and Talented Students Education Program Grant Opportunity
  • Preliminary MCAS Results Release Timeline
  • For Your Info:
    • Skills Capital Grants
    • Social studies summer content institute
    • Social and emotional learning network opportunity
    • Social studies professional development providers wanted
    • Reducing chronic absenteeism
    • Summer enrichment opportunity for high school juniors and seniors

June 2, 2017

  • First Year of Next-Generation MCAS Testing Completed
  • Provide Feedback on the Emerging High Quality College and Career Pathways Designations
  • Sharing Practices Related to Students Who Are Above Grade Level
  • VISTA: Educator Voices Were Heard, and the Results Are In
  • District Induction and Mentoring Reports due July 31
  • For Your Info:
    • U.S. Department of Education blog

May 26, 2017

  • Sharing Practices Related to Students Who Are Above Grade Level
  • Seeking Input on Next-Generation MCAS Parent/Guardian Reports
  • Financial Literacy PISA Results
  • Accountability and Assistance Advisory Council to Meet
  • Communication Survey
  • For Your Info:
    • Governor visits schools

May 19, 2017

  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to Meet
  • Guidance on Immigration Enforcement Requests
  • 2017-2018 Charter School Initial Waitlist Report
  • School Choice Reminder
  • VISTA: Educator Voices Were Heard, and the Results Are In
  • Opportunity for Free Strategic Planning Facilitation Training
  • Computer Science-STEM Opportunity
  • Summit on Leading Student-Centered Digital Learning Initiatives

May 12, 2017

  • Systems Upgrade Planned for This Weekend
  • 2018 Massachusetts Teacher of the Year
  • Information for 2017-18 Charter School Application Cycle
  • Update on Proposed Change to Licensure Regulations
  • Update and Reminder on Standard-Setting Panel Recruitment
  • Equity Plan Update
  • Study on Experiences of Students Whose First Language Is Not English
  • Massachusetts Survey on Personalized Learning
  • Second Annual Civics Literacy Conference
  • For Your Info:
    • Harvard Case Method Project

May 5, 2017

  • Presidential Scholars Announced
  • Save the Date: Conference on Safe and Supportive Learning Environments
  • Assistance Program for Lead in School Drinking Water
  • ESE Resource Corner: ESE Research Update
  • For Your Info:
    • High school strategy briefs

April 28, 2017

  • Material to be Assessed on 2018 Science and Technology/Engineering MCAS Tests
  • Standard-Setting Panel Recruitment
  • Access for Students with Disabilities to Field Trips and Extracurricular Activities
  • Reminder: May 8 Deadline if MCAS-Alt Participation Rate Will Exceed 1 Percent
  • ESE Resource Corner
    • Next-generation MCAS monthly update
  • For Your Info:
    • Green Difference Award winners
    • Personalized learning convening

April 21, 2017

  • National Teacher of the Year
  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education
  • Save the Date: Conference on Safe and Supportive Learning Environments
  • Early Education Focus Groups with Public Preschools
  • Sheltered English Immersion (SEI) Surveys
  • ESE Resource Corner: Writing Standards in Action Project
  • For Your Info:
    • Earth-to-space call
Jeffrey C. Riley
Jeffrey C. Riley
Commissioner of Elementary
and Secondary Education

Contact Us

Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
75 Pleasant Street, Malden, MA 02148-4906

Voice: (781) 338-3000
TTY: (800) 439-2370

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