Editor's Note (The View From Here)

Not a Lot of Coverage

You wouldn’t know it by watching the news, but on April 12, the President signed H.R. 276, the “Recognizing Achievement in Classified School Employees Act”, which directs the Secretary of Education to establish the Recognizing Inspiring School Employees (RISE) Award Program to acknowledge excellence exhibited by classified school employees. Job titles included in this category are paraprofessionals, clerical staff, custodial and maintenance services, transportation services, food services, skilled trades, health and student services, security services, and technical services.

Often overlooked and lumped into the category of “support staff”, these people are essential to keep schools safe and successful. Some districts and states have recognition programs for classified employees, but it seems only fitting that there be a national award.

Report Time?

It’s not only students who need to complete reports this time of year. Just as we were going to press, a number of national reports were published—more than I have room to mention. Here are a few.

The U.S. Department of Education released “Parent and Educator Guide to School Climate Resources”, which provides best practices and includes resources school leaders and teachers can utilize as they work to achieve a positive school climate, lower disciplinary issues, and enhance school safety. Download it at www2.ed.gov.

The Chiefs for Change issued “Breaking Through: Shattering the Glass Ceiling for Women Leaders”. The report addresses the fact that despite the increasing diversity of our nation’s schools, and the enormous representation of women at other levels of our public school systems, the vast majority of district superintendents and state chiefs are white men. You can read it at chiefsforchange.org.

The State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA) published “State K-12 Broadband Leadership: Driving Connectivity and Access.” It highlights the powerful impact of state leadership in driving critical policy decisions at the national and state level to support broadband networks, bandwidth capacity and home access for low-income families. Find it at www.setda.org.

This article originally appeared in the School Planning & Management April/May 2019 issue of Spaces4Learning.