Policy

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Goals for Education | Monitoring State Policies

Monitoring and reporting to assist education leaders and policymakers as they shape public policy. SREB tracks trends and analyzes the progress of all 16 SREB states in each area in the Challenge to Lead 2020 Goals for Education and provides Legislative Reports that detail legislative and budget actions in each state.

SREB’s Insights data tool allows leaders to explore actions across states, delve into a topic for a deeper understanding or select a detailed state report.

College and Career Readiness

Intensive work to help states implement essential components of SREB’s recommendations for statewide college and career readiness. These include assessing high school juniors to determine their progress toward the state’s readiness standards — and requiring those who are underprepared to take transitional courses in 12th grade.

SREB.org/Readiness >

Accountability Systems for College- and Career-Readiness Standards 

Tracking and reporting progress on implementation of college- and career-readiness standards and related reforms across states. Based on this research, SREB staff support states through reports, meetings and technical assistance.

In September 2017, SREB staff presented information on state efforts to align instructional materials and on state accountability systems under the Every Student Succeeds Act at SREB’s annual Meeting of Legislative and Governors’ Staff. A stakeholder from Alabama attended.

SREB.org/Benchmarking >

Readiness in State Accountability Systems

SREB’s benchmarking team distilled key elements of SREB states’ new accountability systems under the Every Student Succeeds Act into interactive profiles at Insights.SREB.org.

Publications

In October 2018 SREB published a set of reports on the redesign of state accountability systems. Profiles on each state describe how the state established expectations for increasing student college and career readiness and also include the state’s long-term goals, school performance indicators, framework for differentiating school performance, and system of identification and support for struggling schools. An introduction to trends across states offers recommendations for making the new systems effective tools for continuous improvement.   

Alabama’s profile notes the state’s efforts to raise expectations for college and career readiness through its long-term goals and school performance indicators.

meetings
Increasing readiness and prosperity through optimized use of federal funds

In October 2018 at SREB’s Annual Meeting of Legislative and Governors’ Staff, SREB staff presented information on opportunities for states to increase the college- and career-readiness of learners and the prosperity of the workforce by integrating their implementation of three key federal laws: the ESSA, Perkins V and Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.

Career and Technical Education 

State Leaders Forum 

Alabama attendees at SREB’s State Leaders Forum on policies for high-quality career and technical education in November 2017: 6

    SREB.org/CTE >

    Educator Effectiveness

    Advises state and district leaders as they develop strategies to support the professional growth of teachers and principals. SREB serves as a technical advisor to state education agencies, spotlights inspiring stories of local practice and convenes stakeholders at regional meetings.

    Technical Assistance

    SREB supported the development and implementation of Alabama’s educator effectiveness strategy by funding two educators-in-residence. These educators conducted in-depth professional learning and training with district teams as they developed their educator evaluation plans. 

    convenings

    The state department sent representatives to SREB’s Sixth Annual Educator Effectiveness Convening in May 2018. They participated in collaborative working sessions with peers from 12 SREB states. At the meeting, state department staff met to discuss four shared problems of practice: equitable access to effective teaching, leadership development, professional learning, and teacher voice.

    reports and data

    SREB produced the following resources for Alabama leaders during the last 12 months:

    School Is My Happy Place, May 2018, which showcases the innovative strategies used to develop a positive school culture at an elementary school in central Florida.

    Mentoring New Teachers: A Fresh Look, January 2018, which proposes three action areas for states, districts and schools to support the development of novice educators and their mentors.

    Educator Effectiveness Bill Tracker interactive tool, updated weekly to allow constituents to track legislative bills across eight areas, including teacher preparation, evaluation and professional learning.

    A bi-weekly educator effectiveness e-newsletter.

    SREB.org/EE >

    Teacher Preparation 

    SREB’s Teacher Preparation Commission met in 2016, 2017 and 2018 and will publish its final recommendations to improve teacher preparation programs in late 2018.

    The Commission published its first report, More than the Numbers: Teacher Preparation Data Systems State Policy and Recommendations, in September 2017. 

    Postsecondary Education

    Affordability

    SREB’s Commission on College Affordability in the South recommended policies and practices to keep college costs within reach of all students. In addition to the Commission’s report, policymakers can draw on updated regional and individual state affordability profiles to understand how costs impact families at different income levels. 

    In April 2018, SREB collaborated with the Association of Community College Trustees for its Governance Institute for Student Success, which convened trustees, community college presidents and senior staff, and state postsecondary agency staff from Alabama, Kentucky, Louisiana and Mississippi. As president of the Alabama Community College System Board of Trustees, Governor Kay Ivey opened the meeting in Birmingham, welcoming nearly 70 participants, including a large contingent from Alabama. Among the topics discussed were the board’s role in state policy development, the changing world of work and learning, high-impact policies and practices, and engaging partnerships and collaborations.

    SREB convened state higher education agency academic officers in October 2017 to discuss factors that impact college affordability. Attendees learned from each other about new policies for tuition, fees, financial aid, transfer, textbook costs, online courses, collaboration with K-12, readiness and serving returning adults. A representative from the Alabama Commission on Higher Education participated.

    SREB assisted Alabama legislators and other leaders who requested information on postsecondary issues such as financial aid for dependents of veterans, educational goals, state longitudinal data systems and open learning resources.

    State Services

    Connecting policymakers with custom information, presentations and assistance on education issues as they arise. Leaders in member states are encouraged to contact SREB for data, analysis and advice.

    SREB staff visited Alabama to meet with legislators and staff, and attend committee meetings in 2018.

    Throughout 2017-18, legislators, legislative staff and governor’s staff from Alabama requested assistance on topics including student transportation, teacher salaries, student financial aid and education governance.

    Meetings 

    Alabama staff were among those from 10 SREB states at the 2017 meeting of legislative and governors’ staff from across the SREB region to discuss topics that will likely be on agendas during upcoming legislative sessions.

    Alabama legislators were among those in attendance at the 2017 meetings of SREB’s Legislative Advisory Council and Legislative Work Conference. 

    SREB.org/StateServices >