From the Executive Director:
As we say goodbye to 2018 and prepare for 2019, we are excited to share the following news:
It’s the most wonderful time of the year: Registration is now open for the 11th annual conference , Raising Our Voices: Bold Innovations That Empower Students , taking place in Chicago on April 3-5. We hope you can join us !

January will be a big month for us! First, we will be releasing the third round of data collection for the NPEA Data Counts Project (NDC) . Please keep an eye out for additional information in the coming weeks. If you haven't had the chance to read the recent summary of the data focus groups held at this year's conference, please take a moment to review it here . We will also be reaching out about the 2019 webinar series, having finished 2018 with 22 successful webinars , all of which are free to NPEA members. Scroll down to " Updates and Resources " for information about our first webinar of 2019, courtesy of The Steve Fund, on January 24th!

We welcome Alex Newell to the NPEA Team as the Member Services Associate. We are thrilled he has joined us. Feel free to reach out to him with membership questions at anewell@tsf.org .

Lastly, we are looking forward to 2019, more opportunities for connecting with members, and hopefully seeing many of you in Chicago for the conference. As always, we are thankful for all who are part of the NPEA family and the many ways you support your students, families, and communities in these busy and challenging times.

In partnership,
Executive Director, NPEA
Member Benefits Corner
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NPEA Data Counts
Eyes on the Field
Member Spotlights
Members in the News
The University of Michigan was recently highlighted in many national publications as part of a study investigating the result of offering guaranteed aid to high-achieving, low-income students. Those students ended up applying (and being admitted) at almost twice the rate of a control group, opening up fascinating new solutions for the challenge of students undermatching.

Read the entire study here.
Beacon Academy, a private school in Boston, was the subject of an NAIS article this fall focused on navigating race and class in elite spaces. Beacon was celebrated for their success in opening a discourse with students, families, and educators, providing support for their students through their graduation process. Beacon's strong track record serves as an example for similar programs everywhere.

Learn more about Beacon Academy.
DePaul University announced a partnership with City Colleges of Chicago to create the DePaul Harold Washington Academy, providing a low-cost path to a bachelor's degree for Chicago Star Scholars. The partnership is being touted as a first-of-its-kind program that will hopefully provide a model for other cities and schools across the country.

Read the announcement here.
Featured Video
Check out this feature on NPEA member Chicago Scholars at their fall Onsite Admissions Forum. 1,000 students and 185 schools, all in the same place!

Source: WGNTV
NPEA Updates and Resources
Raising Our Voices: Bold Innovations That Empower Students

Registration is now open for our 11th Annual Conference, taking place April 3-5, 2019 at the Holiday Inn Mart Plaza in Chicago, IL.

The deadline to register for discounted  Early Bird rates is Friday, February 15 .


Save the Date: the Award for Excellence nomination fo rm will be released on January 31, and the deadline for submissions is February 28.
NPEA Member Discounts on Professional Education Programs from Harvard Graduate School of Education
NPEA is pleased to announce a new learning alliance with Professional Education (PE) at the Harvard Graduate School of Education! NPEA members have the opportunity to attend PPE summer programs at 20% off the regular tuition . Below, please find information about each of the programs which take place in May, June, and July 2019. To receive the 20% discount in tuition, NPEA members should:

1) Apply for the interested program through the program webpage first. No payment will be required at this stage;

2) Upon acceptance, you will receive a confirmation email and be asked to complete an enrollment form (different from the application form). On the enrollment form, you can input the discount code “NPEA 2019” and a discount of 20% will automatically apply to your invoice.
6/29/19 - 7/3/19 (Apply by 5/24/19)
Learn how to raise achievement levels for all students—while narrowing gaps between groups—by increasing teacher, student, and family engagement.
7/22/19 - 7/25/19 (Apply by 6/10/19)
Design family engagement practices that are directly connected to student learning. Increase your capacity to engage staff, families, and your community to improve student outcomes.
First Webinar of the 2019 Series
Join us for our first Webinar of 2019! On January 24th, The Steve Fund will present a webinar on: Emotional Wellbeing of Students of Color During Transitions , presented by Dr. David P. Rivera (pictured right). Read more and sign up for the webinar here.

The Steve Fund is dedicated to supporting the mental health and emotional well-being of students of color, and has just recently joined with the Jed Foundation to publish the "Equity in Mental Health Framework", expert recommendations for colleges and universities to support and enhance the mental health of students of color. Learn more about The Steve Fund.
You Should Know...
A brief by CLASP looked at federal data from 2012-2016 and determined the following: not only has unmet college need risen 23% , but it disproportionately affects students of color, with 89% of black students suffering at private, not-for-profit colleges (versus 74% of white students and 87% of Latinx ).
Houghton Mifflin found that teachers were using more ed-tech in 2018 than 2017, but did not feel that they had adequate time to learn how to use these tools properly. Of interest: 41% of teachers in high-poverty schools found that technology improved student achievement, as opposed to only 22% of teachers in low-poverty . EdWeek provided a summary of these findings as well.
The American Educational Research Association (AERA) looked at Texas's "10 Percent Plan", through which the top 10% of students in Texas high schools receive guaranteed admission to any public university. They found that the plan "reduced the likelihood of undermatch... by 23 percentage points for a low-income, highly qualified student."
Best Practices
How Better Hiring Practices Can Increase Teacher Effectiveness and Reduce Turnover

Teacher turnover is a well-known problem that has certainly received plenty of attention for many years now. In an effort to better understand some of the sources of this problem, the Frontline Research and Learning Institute began a multi-part report studying the biggest contributing factors and the best practices that could address them. In December, Frontline released the second part of this report , in which they describe they how the practice of hiring for 'cultural fit' may contribute to a lack of qualified teachers and high teacher turnover.

One of the key points that Frontline noted was that "while most schools and districts have adopted a process for systematically reviewing applicants, very few report having a quality rubric to ensure that evaluations of candidate quality and fit are measured against a consistent standard." More alarmingly, Frontline found that "hiring managers believe that cultural fit is the most important element in making a hiring decision, above any other characteristic —including experience and training. Very few managers, however, have any clear, systematic way of articulating or measuring cultural fit."
Books You May Be Interested In
The Privileged Poor: How Elite Colleges are Failing Disadvantaged Students
By: Anthony Abraham Jack

The Ivy League looks different than it used to. College presidents and deans of admission have opened their doors—and their coffers—to support a more diverse student body. But is it enough just to admit these students? In  The Privileged Poor Anthony Jack  (a 2018 NPEA Conference Keynote) reveals that the struggles of less privileged students continue long after they’ve arrived on campus. Admission, they quickly learn, is not the same as acceptance. This bracing and necessary book documents how university policies and cultures can exacerbate preexisting inequalities and reveals why these policies hit some students harder than others.
Improving Education Together
By: Geoff Marietta, Chad d’Entremont, and Emily Murphy Kaur

Improving Education Together offers a step-by-step guide to Labor-Management-Community (LMC) collaboration, an intervention that has successfully improved student outcomes in a wide variety of school districts across the country. The authors illustrate how a culture of collaboration between labor, management, and community stakeholders can be built using readily available tools for needs assessment, root-cause analysis, team norms, brainstorming, consensus-building, and long-term planning. 
So You Want to Talk About Race
By: Ijeoma Oluo

In this  New York Times   bestseller , Ijeoma Oluo explores the complex reality of today's racial landscape--from white privilege and police brutality to systemic discrimination and the Black Lives Matter movement--offering straightforward clarity that readers need to contribute to the dismantling of the racial divide.
Mission: NPEA connects the people, practices, and innovations essential for eliminating barriers to educational access and college and career success for underserved students.
Photo Credit: LuvLens Photography