World Class Schools 2.0

The Branstad Administration’s latest education reform proposal has been released.  (It can be downloaded from the DE website or read it online at The Gazette.)  There aren’t any real surprises here:

  • Raising starting teacher pay and implementing a teacher leadership and compensation system.  (Graphic from page 3 of the legislative brief.)

Career Pathways

  • Teach Iowa Initiative: tuition reimbursement for qualifying students who commit to teaching in Iowa for five years, a year long student teaching pilot program, and a statewide job posting system.
  • Iowa Promise Diploma Seals: optional program to recognize college- and career-readiness of high school graduates.  It is to include “a senior portfolio assessment requiring the demonstration of concepts such as collaboration, critical thinking, and creativity.”  The standards for the seals will be set by “a blue-ribbon commission of business and education leaders.”  [Note that college entrance requirements already provide information to students and parents about transcripts and ACT/SAT scores that would indicate “college-readiness” of a student or help students and parents make a plan to be college ready.]
  • Educator Development System: this one is all about the NCLB waiver, asking for the authority to design and implement a teacher evaluation system the legislature declined to grant last session.  (See Iowa’s ESEA Flexibility Waiver Request pp. 111-113, which proposed the use of value-added measure of academic growth–including a plan to measure untested subjects–as part of the evaluation).
  • Iowa Learning Online expansion.

IPTV will have a live stream of the Condition of the State Address here at 10:00 am tomorrow.