-----Original Message-----
Sent: Friday, October 08, 2004 5:26 PM
Subject: Message from State Superintendent Randy Dunn




Good Afternoon. 

I know many of you are involved in Teacher Institutes in your areas that coincide with the Columbus Day weekend—as such, it may be a day or two before some of you read this week’s update.  For those taking an institute day, I hope those events are professionally invigorating and give you an opportunity to renew acquaintances and see old friends.


As part of our work toward streamlining the rules and regulations process here at ISBE, we have established an email account to both receive your recommendations for where our work should focus and note what specifically should be changed.  Send your ideas to lessredtape@isbe.net and we will start sorting through your ideas.  We want to be responsive to how you think our efforts can best be spent in undertaking this process.  Also, if you have an innovative idea across the spectrum of P-20 education that you haven’t had an opportunity to share with ISBE staff in the past, please share your thinking and suggestions to another email account we’ve set up: innovation@isbe.net.  We’ll be watching the activity in both of these and using what comes in to generate ideas and set direction for us here at the agency.


Finally—particularly for those of you who have involvement with high schools—ISBE will very soon need to review the PSAE assessment. We will be analyzing this very closely here at ISBE—and I will be involved in that process with many staff members from our Fiscal, Data Analysis and Student Assessment staff in the agency.  We will also be seeking input from various constituency groups. If you have strong feelings pro or con in this regard, please send them to me.  


Thank you.


Randy J. Dunn

State Superintendent of Education (Interim)



Also included in today’s message:


  • Tax Anticipation Warrant Program
  • Automated External Defibrillator—HB 4232
  • IMAGE Testing Grades and Dates – Reminder
  • Breakfast Start-Up Incentive Grants
  • Invitation to Comment on Rules
  • Satellite Broadcast  - “Measuring the Effectiveness of the Nation’s Food Service and Retail Food Protection System”
  • iVote 2004
  • Newsclips


Tax Anticipation Warrant Program

The response to the Pooled Tax Anticipation Warrant Program offered by the  Illinois Finance Authority has been significant and supports the necessity for this program.  “Pooling” the needs of school districts into one issue will allow school districts to reduce their costs and increase their savings.  The program will continue to accept surveys and applications on an on-going basis.  However, if funds are needed in December 2004, an application must be received by IFA on October 15, 2004


For information or assistance, please contact Nona Myers or Eric Watson of the Illinois Finance Authority at 217/782-5792. A survey of needs and an application is available by accessing the following link:  http://www.il-fa.com/products/bonds/ptawp.html


Automated External Defibrillator—HB 4232

The Governor has signed HB 4232 into law.  This law will require school districts to have an automated external defibrillator or AED in all indoor physical fitness areas.   The law also requires a trained AED user in each physical fitness facility during school sponsored events.  Contact the Accountability Division for additional information at 217- 782-2948.


For more on the act itself and other information, please go to: http://www.isbe.net/pdf/defibrillator.pdf


IMAGE Testing Grades and Dates - Reminder

Due to the new assessment changes in state law, IMAGE for spring of 2005 will only be testing reading and math in grades 3, 5, 8 and 11. 


For this year, the grade 11 students taking IMAGE will be tested at the same time as PSAE – April 27 -28; makeup May 11-12.  Testing dates for all tests can be found at  www.isbe.net/assessment/Chart2005.htm


Breakfast Start-Up Incentive Grants

The Illinois State Board of Education is pleased to announce the availability of grants to promote start-up funding for implementing School Breakfast Programs.  The state-funded School Breakfast Start-Up Incentive Grant is designed to assist schools in overcoming some of the barriers associated with starting a new program and provides up to $3,500 per school for eligible costs.  A local educational agency (LEA) may complete an application packet for schools that will start a School Breakfast Program during the 2004-2005 school year.  To be considered for funding, completed applications must be submitted to ISBE no later than December 1, 2004.


In addition to the start-up funding, your district may be eligible to receive additional reimbursement of $.10 for each paid, free, and reduced-price breakfast served if participation in the School Breakfast Program increases.  If the number of breakfasts served in the month exceeds the number of breakfasts served in the same month during the preceding year by 10% the district is eligible for the additional reimbursement.  No additional application is required; this additional reimbursement will be paid on a quarterly basis.


Please consider how these incentives can benefit your students in starting the day ready to learn.  To access the entire application packet for the state-funded School Breakfast Start-Up Incentive Grant visit our website at www.isbe.net/nutrition.  If you have questions about these incentives or about the School Breakfast Program please contact staff of the Nutrition Programs and Support Services Division at 1-800-545-7892.


Invitation to Comment on Rules

At its September meeting, the State Board of Education released one set of proposed rules for public comment.  This item has been posted on the agency’s web site at www.isbe.net/rules; choose “Proposed Rules and Amendments.”  Please submit any comments or suggestions you may have to rules@isbe.net.


Part 1 (Public Schools Evaluation, Recognition and Supervision)


This rulemaking consists almost entirely of technical corrections that are needed to ensure continuity in certification policy.  When the personnel-related portions of Part 1 were most recently amended (effective June 1, 2004), no changes were intended in the requirements for serving in the middle grades.  However, by virtue of the way the various rules work together, the specific lists of required coursework for teachers whose fields are reading or library/media science became inapplicable and were not restated.  We therefore have identified a need to amend Section 1.720 by restating the specific topics that the required 18 hours in the field must address.


Similarly, in the recent amendment process several long-standing requirements for the assignment of teachers in career and technical education programs were inadvertently omitted.  These details, which chiefly have to do with the requirement for work experience in the field to be taught, need to be added to new Section 1.737, which discusses the minimum requirements for various assignments.


The only policy change being made via Appendix A is to re-amend the validity of the provisional vocational certificate.  The amendments that took effect on June 1 of this year included a change in the validity of both the provisional vocational certificate and the temporary provisional vocational certificate from K-12 to grades 11 and 12 only.  We agree with points raised since that time to the effect that individuals who meet the requirements for the provisional vocational certificate generally have sufficient educational preparation, in addition to their career background, to enable them to introduce students in grades 7 and above to the fields addressed in career and technical education.  However, we have determined that the temporary provisional vocational certificate, for which the requirements are less stringent, should continue to be valid only for grades 11 and 12 and limited to skill-level instruction in the specific field of specialization.


Deadline for Public Comment:                       November 22, 2004


Notice of Effectiveness of Emergency Rulemaking

Emergency amendments to Part 1, identical to the proposed version discussed above, have been placed into effect so that continuity of certification policy will not be lost while the proposed amendments are completing the rulemaking process.  These emergency amendments have been posted on the agency’s web site at www.isbe.net/rules; choose “Rules Currently in Effect” and scroll to the relevant Part number.  Once the ordinary rulemaking process is complete, the emergency amendments will be replaced.

Effective Date:            September 27, 2004


Satellite Broadcast  - “Measuring the Effectiveness of the Nation’s Food Service and Retail Food Protection System”

Mark Wednesday, October 13, 2004 and make arrangements to view the two-hour satellite broadcast from 12:00 noon until 2:00 p.m.(CST) sponsored by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, Office of Regulatory Affairs and FDA’s National Retail Food Team.


Visit the http://www.fda.gov/cdrh/ocer/dcm/html/program_calendar.html for technical information and updates. Viewing sites must have access to a steerable C-band satellite dish.


Viewing sites are encouraged to videotape this program locally.


iVote 2004

iVote is a project to encourage Illinois K-12 students to participate in the electoral process by reporting on the candidates and issues for the 2004 Presidential and Senatorial elections and participating in a State-wide online vote.

How To Participate

If you are an Illinois K-12 teacher interested in participating in iVote, you can register your class by logging onto the Collaboratory Project at http://collaboratory.nunet.net and clicking on the iVote link.  To participate in the iVote Campaign and/or the iVote Election Day you will need a networked computer running a standards Web browser.