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Great Lakes East
Comprehensive Center

Archive Record of Services

April 2006

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Great Lakes East State Manager: Jayne Sowers, Ed.D.

The Indiana Department of Education has determined the following three areas of focus:

  • Developing policies and procedures for assisting local education agencies in corrective action.
  • Developing policies and procedures for assisting non-Title I schools in need of improvement.
  • Developing procedures and processes for measuring the effectiveness of the state-offered professional development.

Briefly. The Indiana Department of Education is seeking public opinion about the debate on fall versus spring statewide student achievement testing. A panel of state senators amended House Bill 1240 on February 27, 2006, which would have moved Indiana Statewide Testing for Educational Progress Plus (ISTEP+, the statewide assessments) from fall to spring. The bipartisan compromise charges the department with developing a long-term assessment plan, to be created by October 1, 2006.

With the extended timeline, State Superintendent Dr. Suellen Reed anticipates hosting town hall meetings across the state to gather information from the public. According to a press release, the plan "might include spring and fall testing, contain costs, and avoid expensive lawsuits often associated with statewide assessments."

Source: Indiana Department of Education (2006, February 22). Reed supports compromise on ISTEP+ legislation [Press release]. Retrieved March 27, 2006, from http://www.doe.state.in.us/reed/newsr/2006/02-February/ISTEPcompromise.html


State Manager: Gary Appel

Michigan is focusing attention in two areas: teacher quality and high school redesign. The teacher quality interests include technical assistance regarding the following:

  • Reviewing and recertifying teacher preparation programs.
  • Exploring effective alternative certification programs.
  • Developing and implementing a tool for educators to use for planning their professional learning.

The high school redesign interests include the following:

  • Developing individual learning plan formats for students.
  • Researching effective professional development to assist high school teachers as they move from teaching rigorous college-preparatory courses into teaching rigorous courses for all students.
  • Developing supports for English language secondary students to help them access a more rigorous curriculum.

Briefly. Michigan is on the verge of dramatically increasing high school graduation requirements for all students. The plan, approved by the State Board of Education, was taken up by the state House and Senate. Both houses passed legislation that included at least 90 percent of the State Board recommendations. Governor Jennifer M. Granholm has indicated that she will sign the legislation when it arrives on her desk.

Passage of the plan will place new demands on high school teachers and administrators as they adapt to the required changes in coursework and instruction. The Michigan Department of Education is preparing to provide support for the high schools after the plan takes effect.


State Manager: Mark Mitchell

Ohio has identified three priority areas that directly support the focus of technical assistance under Great Lakes East. These priority areas are as follows:

  • Enhancing the content knowledge of special education teachers to promote teacher quality.
  • Exploring data-driven decision-making approaches that use technology tools to enable principals and teachers to analyze and use data to improve assessment and instruction.
  • Exploring a system for credentializing professional development providers and supplemental educational service providers.

Briefly. The State Institute for Reading Instruction (SIRI) offers research-based PK–K professional development for early childhood educators. SIRI, presented by the Ohio State University and the Early Childhood Quality Network and sponsored by the Ohio Department of Education's Office of Reading Improvement in cooperation with the Office of Learning and School Readiness, consists of a series of seven modules held across the state of Ohio. Modules include topics such as "Oral Language and Early Literacy in Preschool" and "Building a Foundation for Preschool Literacy." One of the goals of SIRI is to develop knowledge and skills relating to significant early-literacy concepts and to build capacity to support young children's learning through teaching strategies that are connected to current research.


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