MSDE Bulletin Banner
October 7, 2011
  | MSDE Home | Newsroom | MDReportcard.org | School Improvement |
Interim State Superintendent of Schools Bernard J. Sadusky

A few words from Interim State Superintendent of Schools Bernard J. Sadusky


We never forget being bullied. While it may be a common part of the human experience, it certainly isn’t one we’d like our children or grandchildren to go through. We also know that bullying affects student learning, which is our top priority.

This is why I was pleased to join the Governor and First Lady, as well as a group of important parent involvement and business partners, at Arundel High School yesterday to help put a spotlight on bullying. The event launched National Bullying Awareness Month and Parent Involvement in Education Month.

We want students and their parents to take this effort seriously. While bullying has been around for centuries, it has evolved into a new form for the modern age. Cyber-bullying may be the most difficult versions of this age old problem to successfully eliminate. It generally takes place off school grounds, using computers and cell phones. It is often anonymous.

Combining Bullying Awareness Month and Parent Involvement Month makes sense. The only way to truly stop bullying, and cyberbullying in particular, is with the help of parents. Parents have access to the computers and phones that are tools in this activity. Teachers and administrators can only do so much. We appreciate the efforts of the Maryland PTA, which has helped schools immeasurably.

We congratulate Facebook, and Time-Warner’s Cartoon Network for their work in this area, and we join the O’Malley Administration in its fight against bullying.

* * *

As part of the Maryland fight against bullying, we encourage all students and parents to take Facebook’s antibullying pledge, “Stop Bullying, Speak Up.”

You can do this at any time, but the Governor and First Lady have set aside Oct. 17 at 7 p.m. as a target time for Maryland residents to jump aboard this important initiative.

Information about the pledge can be found here.

* * *

The Maryland State Board of Education is embarking on its plans to choose the next State Superintendent of Schools, and as part of the process will be soliciting the thoughts of State residents.

The Board plans a series of regional meetings to help it develop a leadership profile for the position, which will be used to guide the search process. An online survey is also planned.

Board members in August chose Hazard, Young, Attea and Associates (HYA) to lead the search process. HYA will convene the regional meetings.

MSDE will announce the meeting schedule as soon as it is made final.

* * *

Follow MSDE on Facebook!
Follow MSDE on Facebook!

Don’t forget to connect with MSDE on Facebook. Our department’s Facebook page provides regular updates on state initiatives, MSDE videos, and links to education news throughout the State.


Calendar

October 13 – Lights On Afterschool Event, Elkridge

October 14 – Maryland Teacher of the Year Gala, Baltimore

October 25-26 – State Board Meeting, Baltimore



Video   VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS
Graduation Rate 2011
September 30, 2011
Maryland's graduation rate hits a record high of 87%. Educators believe the High School Assessments helped, and now the state will benefit as well from a new Longitudinal Data System.

Video   VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS
News from the Board
September 27, 2011
Maryland forges ahead with the Longitudinal Data System to better track and educate students from kindergarten through college. Also, SAT results and a continuing look at Maryland's policy regarding long term suspensions.


Race to the Top

Race to the Top Monthly Update
September 2011 Issue, Click Here.


In the News

Maryland Graduation Rate at a Record 87 Percent
Washington Post

Maryland Steps Up Superintendent Search WBAL-TV

Governor Joins Facebook in Anti-Bullying Pledge
Patch.com

Governor, First Lady, Take Anti-Bullying Pledge
WJLA-TV



Having trouble viewing this email?
Click here to view on the web.

Click here for a PDF version of the MSDE October 7, 2011 Education Bulletin.

If you would prefer not to receive future Newsletters from us, simply click here, and insert in the subject line, Unsubscribe.

GRADUATION RATE HITS NEW RECORD

Maryland’s High School graduation rate for the Class of 2011 jumped to its highest recorded rate, and more students are passing the High School Assessments to do so, according to data released last week by the Maryland State Department of Education.

 President Obama last month announced new flexibility for states with schools having difficulty making Adequate Yearly Progress. Baltimore City CEO Andres Alonso (left) was among the education leaders standing with the President during his White House announcement.

President Obama last month announced new flexibility for states with schools having difficulty making Adequate Yearly Progress. Baltimore City CEO Andres Alonso (left) was among the education leaders standing with the President during his White House announcement.

Maryland’s graduation rate reached 87 percent in 2011, up from 86.5 percent in 2010 and 85.2 percent in 2009, reaching its highest level in history.

“I want to congratulate the students, parents and educators in Maryland for outstanding progress in graduation rates – the highest level in our State’s history,” said Governor Martin O’Malley. “The more a person learns, the more a person earns, and the more jobs we create. Together, we can continue to demonstrate why Maryland’s public schools are number one in the nation by preparing our children for the jobs of tomorrow.”

The 87 percent graduation rate is calculated under the “leaver rate” developed by the National Center for Education Statistics.  The leaver rate counts all graduates, not just those who graduate in four years, and does not follow a particular group of students. 

As required by State law, Maryland this year is transitioning from the leaver rate to the “cohort rate” for federal reporting purposes.  In addition, federal law has changed the racial subgroup categories.  The combined effect alters how much of Maryland’s data is being reported this year and in the coming years, and initiates a new baseline.

The development of Maryland’s longitudinal database now allows the State to follow each student in a particular graduating cohort based on a unique identifier.   Because Maryland’s accountability plan calls for both a four-year and five-year rate, then five years of a single cohort’s data is needed.  That means the Class of 2010 data will be used for accountability in 2011.  The four-year rate for the Class of 2011 will be available after the September 30 enrollment numbers have been processed over the winter, as that is where the collection of 2011 summer graduate data occur.

Under that new calculation, Maryland’s four-year rate is 82 percent for the class of 2010, and its five-year rate is 84.6 percent for the 2010 class. 

Using the old “annual event” dropout rate – the percentage of students that drop out of Grades 9-12 in any given year – the State’s dropout rate increased slightly, from 2.5 percent to 3.2 percent.  The rate remains below that of 2008, when it was 3.4 percent.  The new cohort dropout rate for 2010 is 11.93 percent, which counts non-graduates who did not re-enroll for a fifth year as dropouts.

Last month’s data release also looked at high schools attempting to hit the increasingly difficult Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) targets.  No Child Left Behind required that states establish annual goals for schools to reach in order to hit the target of having all students reach proficiency by 2014.  President Obama last month announced plans to offer flexibility to states regarding the law.

Despite the increasingly difficult nature of the federal AYP rules, three high schools exited the School Improvement process this year, having met their targets for two consecutive years.  These schools are Benjamin Franklin High School and Frederick Douglass in Baltimore City, and Edgewood High School in Harford County.

Of Maryland’s 1,376 schools, 760 met AYP in 2011—55.2 percent.  This compares to 936—nearly 70 percent—last year.  Eleven schools exited the school improvement process overall. 

All 2011 school and system data are available on the updated MdReportCard.org website.


MARYLAND JOINS FACEBOOK, CARTOON NETWORK IN EFFORT TO STEM BULLYING

Governor Martin O’Malley and First Lady Judge Katie O’Malley yesterday joined Facebook’s Vice President of U.S. Public Policy Joel Kaplan and Cartoon Network President/COO Stuart Snyder, Interim State Superintendent Dr. Bernard Sadusky, Anne Arundel County Schools Superintendent Dr. Kevin Maxwell, and other officials and special guests for a National Bullying Prevention Month kick-off event at Arundel High School.

Cartoon Network COO Stu Snyder (left), Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, First Lady Katie O’Malley, Ali Sepasyar of Cartoon Network’s “Dude, What Would Happen,” and Jackson Rogow (front) also of “Dude,” gathered yesterday to speak out against bullying.

Cartoon Network COO Stu Snyder (left), Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, First Lady Katie O’Malley, Ali Sepasyar of Cartoon Network’s “Dude, What Would Happen,” and Jackson Rogow (front) also of “Dude,” gathered yesterday to speak out against bullying.

The event took place alongside the kick-off of Parent Involvement in Education Month, and scores of parent volunteers joined in the activities.

After a surprise introduction by Ali Sepasyar and Jackson Rogow, hosts of Cartoon Network’s “Dude, What Would Happen,” the Governor and First Lady, before hundreds of parents, educators and students, took the “Stop Bullying: Speak Up” pledge.  The Governor also challenged other governors across the nation and all Marylanders to take the pledge and become active in their communities against bullying.

“Maryland has become a leader in the fight against bullying with some of the most comprehensive laws in the nation, but it will take all of us –students, parents and family members, educators and community leaders –to stop the abuse,” said Governor O’Malley. “Katie and I stand with Facebook and Time Warner’s Cartoon Network to do everything we can to prevent bullying and help our children grow and learn with the support they deserve. We challenge Marylanders and all Americans to speak up and become involved in this initiative. Together, we can return to the work of building up our children’s future.”

The Governor and First Lady encouraged all parents to take an active role in their children’s lives by joining in efforts to prevent bullying. They also announced that at 7 p.m., October 17, Maryland families and children are encouraged to take time to take the pledge together and discuss the importance of bullying prevention.

“Martin and I encourage everyone to stand up to bullying in their schools and communities," said First Lady Katie O’Malley.  “As parents, we know firsthand that with the Internet, social networks and cell phones, the face of bullying has changed. The abuse no longer stops at the school yard, but bullies now have access to their victims 24 hours a day and the results can last a lifetime.”

The Maryland State Department of Education and local education leaders have been instrumental in supporting efforts to combat bullying in Maryland.

“Students, teachers, principals, and parents tell me that bullying is a big problem that hasn’t gone away,” said Interim State Superintendent of Schools Bernard Sadusky.  “School should be an oasis for learning and discovery.  We need to curb this type of behavior in our schools, and with the help of stronger parental involvement and a project like this, we are taking a step in the right direction.”

Arundel Principal Sharon Stratton and Interim State Superintendent Bernard Sadusky discussed the importance of parent involvement in the fight against bullying.

Arundel Principal Sharon Stratton and Interim State Superintendent Bernard Sadusky discussed the importance of parent involvement in the fight against bullying.

In addition to Dr. Sadusky and Dr. Maxwell, the event included Christian Hodges from the Maryland Association of Student Councils: Kay Romero, president of the Maryland PTA; Susan Shaffer, president of the Mid-Atlantic Equity Association; and Sharon Stratton, principal of Arundel High School.

 

The Maryland Education Bulletin is published by Maryland State Department of Education, 200 West Baltimore Street, Baltimore, Maryland 21201. 410-767-0600. 410-333-6442 TTY. 1-888-246-0016. Interim State Superintendent of Schools Bernard J. Sadusky.  Stephen Brooks, Deputy State Superintendent, Office of Finance. John E Smeallie, Deputy State Superintendent, Office of Administration. James H DeGraffenreidt, Junior, President, State Board of Education. Martin O’Malley, Governor. A publication of the Office of Academic Policy. Bill Reinhard and Gail Tucker, Editors. MSDE Videos: http://www.MarylandPublicSchools.org/MSDE/newsroom/videos

`