District Deeds Sunday Reads – 12/9/18 – Recruiting Millennials; Chronic Absenteeism Focus; Misassigned Teachers

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Here are some interesting articles we received and discovered this past week…

ENJOY!

Millennial Teachers: Things to Consider in Trying to Recruit and Retain Them

Quote from Article:

Managers in many professions—including those working for school systems—share a common topic of complaint these days: challenges around hiring and keeping millennials.

That generation, generally defined as those born between 1981 and 1996, has been stereotyped unflatteringly as self-absorbed, entitled, and obsessed with technology to an unhealthy extent. The group also makes up large proportion of today’s eligible workforce.  

In a session here this week at the annual conference for Learning Forward, which advocates for and provides professional learning for educators, dozens of instructional coaches, administrators, and central office staff members gathered to address tactics for hiring and retaining millennial teachers—and with an eye toward avoiding stereotypes.

And…

At that point, Poag posed some peer-reviewed research findings about millennials in the workplace:

Given all this, a key to retaining millennials, Poag said, is offering ongoing professional learning.

And…

As Randi Weingarten, the president of the American Federation of Teachers, wrote in an Education Week opinion piece, another recent poll showed that millennials are supportive of strengthening teachers’ unions. But unions have historically protected last-in, first-out hiring policies and tenure-based advancement, rather than the outcome-based evaluations that millennials say they support. So, of course, even data-based generalizations such as the ones above should be viewed with some skepticism. 

District Deeds Synopsis:

This article provides a great break down of the motivators for millennials in choosing a career.  As a parent of two millennials, many of both the stereotypes and the actual characteristics mentioned ring true.

It was interesting reading the article and then comparing the desires of millennials in a Teacher position and what the San Diego Unified School District is currently able to provide to the next generation of Teachers.

Let’s break down a couple of the Millennial characteristics…

A quote from the book referred to, ” The M Factor”, says ” We have titled the seven trends that make up the M-Factor: Parenting, Entitlement, Meaning, Great Expectations, The Need for Speed, Social Networking, and Collaboration.”

Virtually every one of the seven Millennial trends is missing for a Teacher with the current SDUSD senior management.

“Meaning”  – Of being stuck in a struggling school with a rookie Principal and no supports – Nope!

“The Need for Speed” – with a 3 month wait time to get a computer repaired…afraid not.

This is one characteristic being fully met by the SDUSD – with layoffs every year and the “last in, first out” SDEA Union contract guideline, no job security is guaranteed!

Is it any wonder that the SDUSD can’t recruit enough new Teachers no matter how many hiring incentive programs they try?

One more question for our readers…

If you were a new Teacher with excellent credentials, would YOU apply for work in the dysfunctional SDUSD, that has no hope of getting better as long as the pathetically incompetent Superintendent Marten and and corrupt Board of Education are in charge, if you had opportunities to work somewhere else in San Diego?

Of course not.

Districts Focus on Outreach, School Climate and Students’ Life Challenges to Cut Chronic Absenteeism

Quote from Article:

Years ago, it was easy for districts to ignore what high average daily-attendance numbers can conceal: kids, sometimes lots of them, who miss weeks of school every year.

The 2015 Every Student Succeeds Act has changed that calculus.

For the first time, the law requires states to report chronic-absenteeism rates, and more than two-thirds of the states use those rates as indicators of school success in federally mandated accountability plans.

And…

The federal data defines chronic absenteeism as missing 15 days of school; although under ESSA, states usually define it as missing 18 days in a 180-day school year.

Addressing chronic absenteeism should start with efforts to create a culture of school attendance—by, for example, promoting the importance of coming to school and offering incentives, Chang says.

And…

In the 8,600-student Meriden Public Schools in central Connecticut, district leaders asked school-based teams of administrators and specialists—who were already meeting weekly to discuss student behavior—to also monitor attendance.

Typically, teams reach out when students miss three days of school. But families of students with a history of absenteeism get a phone call from a teacher after a single absence.

This early intervention has helped reduce the chronic-absenteeism rate at one struggling elementary school from 21 percent to 8.5 percent, says family-school liaison David Cardona.

District Deeds Synopsis:

This article is well worth reading.  It provides many successful strategies to reduce chronic absenteeism in from the ground up…starting with reviewing all relevant data and changing the school culture.

Whenever we read these hopeful articles with inspiring examples of multi-level stakeholder collaboration to produce wonderful results for Students and Families we temporarily forget the SDUSD leadership ineptitude.

Virtually all of the chronic absenteeism solutions provided require transparency, open communication and trust…three traits nonexistent in 90% of the absenteeism strategies created and presented by the Superintendent and approved by the Board of Education.

Our only hope is that Principals, Teachers and District/School Site Staff lead the way to implement some of these successful strategies independently for the good of their Students and Families.

If you do we are sure that Parents, Students and Communities will follow.

Good Luck!!!

Improper Teaching Assignments Increase, Likely Under-Reported

Quote from Article:

(Calif.) The number of teachers working outside their authorized area of specialty at the state’s lowest performing schools increased for the first time in 15 years after hitting record lows in 2015–but some education officials say the problem is likely worse than what’s been reported.

The total number of misassigned teachers increased from 1,570 during the 2015-16 school year to 1,821 in 2016-17, according to analysis from the Commission on Teacher Credentialing. Those numbers are drawn from just the state’s lowest-performing schools, which still represents about a third of the state’s student enrollment

Members of the commission said at a meeting Thursday, however, that the criteria used to identify misassigned teachers is leaving out many educators who are not yet fully credentialed to lead a classroom.

And…

Currently, misassignment is in part defined by the state as: The placement of certificated staff in a teaching or services position for which the educator does not hold a legally recognized certificate, credential, permit, or waiver.

Not included in the misassignment counts, Darling-Hammond  said, are all of those who hold substandard credentials, permits and waivers because they have not demonstrated subject matter competence or may not have demonstrated teaching competence.

“Most of the people who are by most states’ standards considered misassigned are not included in our count,” Darling-Hammond said. “We’re doing a lot of work to count the tiny number of people who don’t even have any of those substandard authorizations. I think we as a commission should be thinking with our colleagues on the state board and in the Legislature about what would be the appropriate way to reduce the actual amount of misassignments in schools.”

District Deeds Synopsis:

After reading this article we did a little investigation to see if any of our contacts are experiencing these “misassignments” in their SDUSD schools.

Preliminary results point to a variety of misassignment “violations” in SDUSD Elementary, Middle and High Schools at every level of K-12…and the numerous ways that SDUSD senior leadership is covering it up and hiding it from the California Department of Education and the SDUSD Communities.

Stay tuned for more information in the coming weeks!

Now for our Quote of the Week:

“But the best teams I’ve encountered have one important thing in common: their team structure and processes cover a full range of distinct competencies necessary for success.”         – Jesse James Garrett

 

Have a great week!!!

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