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Dear Colleagues,
This week, we have a variety of new materials available for you, including our second installment of the new video professional development series, which delves more deeply into a third grade math lesson in Deer Park, Long Island. Additionally, educators from across the state reflect on the value of assessment in our classrooms through video and editorials, and one school district successfully uses a state grant to engage with families as partners in education. We would also like to share a new early literacy resource, which provides parents and families daily literacy content through an interactive e-book and accompanying activities produced by former Sesame Street Music Director, Robby Merkin. 

Thank you for the tireless work that you do on behalf of the students across New York State.
John B. King, Jr.
Follow me on Twitter @JohnKingNYSED
Video: Family Engagement in South Huntington

Watch how one school district is successfully using Teacher and Principal Leaders to engage families as partners in education through a New York State Education Department grant. The "Strengthening Teacher and Leader Effectiveness" program currently supports 170 school districts across the State through individual and BOCES-led consortia grants. In total, $72 million will be provided to support grantees utilizing a comprehensive systems approach to recruitment, development, support, retention and equitable distribution of effective teachers and school leaders as part of their implementation of their teacher and leader evaluation plan.

Video: School Principal Says Don't Sweat the Assessments

South Glens Falls Principal Mark Fish visits classrooms in his middle school with a key message: do your best on the state assessments, which are just part of the routine.

Video Professional Development Series: Grade 3 Math

The second installment of our new video professional development series focuses on a third grade mathematics classroom in Deer Park, Long Island, where students are solving real world problems involving the perimeters of polygons (3.MD8). The first video does not include captions of evidence of Common Core alignment. The second video includes captions that highlight when the task or teacher move is illustrating Common Core aligned instruction.
Who: small group of educators (1-4)
What: video professional development

New York Perspectives

March 27, 2014
Brian Cohen and G. Michael Guy, Ph.D. explain the importance of exposing students to a richer view of math through the Common Core math standards and tests.

Dr. G. Michael Guy is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science at Queensborough Community College. Dr. Guy's research and programmatic interests focus on math remediation, pedagogy and algebraic geometry.

Brian Cohen is a STEM Coordinator for Skaneateles Central School District and serves on the New York State math content advisory panel. He worked as a math coach in the Syracuse area for eight years and was a member of the working group that revised the Common Core Math standards for use in New York.
March 27, 2014
Frederick De Naples discusses the way in which New York State's implementation of the Common Core standards and tests will help close the gap between the end of high school and the beginning of college.

Frederick De Naples is a Professor of English at Bronx Community College of the City University of New York. He is a member of the New York State Education Department English Language Arts Advisory Committee.

The Value of Assessment in Teaching and Learning

This week's post from our EngagedVoices educator blog features Sue Wheeler, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction in Pearl River School District. Sue discusses how external assessments complement local measures as teachers and schools provide opportunities for student growth.
Assessment begins as early as the day each child is born. How much did the baby weigh? How long? Doctors immediately check for an APGAR score, comparing each newborn to a benchmark. As the child grows, parents may record other milestones such as first steps, first words, first lost tooth. These early childhood measures help parents shape the lives of their children physically, emotionally, and academically.
Keeping Our Schools Safe

We are very pleased to announce that the New York State Education Department, in collaboration with the New York State Police, the New York State Department of Criminal Justice Services, the New York State Department of Homeland Security, and the Governor's Office, have launched a new website: www.safeschools.ny.gov.

On the new website, you will find information specifically tailored to first responders, parents, and school administrators and staff related to school safety and climate. For your convenience, you may watch a short webinar, which can be accessed at the top of the homepage explaining the New York State School Safety Improvement Team, the availability of a 10% funding incentive for participating districts, the benefit to submitting school safety plans as well as partnering with local community responders, and work that is aid-eligible.

The website will be regularly updated to provide current and crucial information related to school safety. We hope that you will take the time to utilize this new and excellent resource.
New Early Literacy Resource - DaybyDayNY

The New York State Library has announced the soft launch of DaybyDayNY, an early literacy website designed to engage families and very young children in reading, learning and public libraries.

DaybyDayNY is a virtual calendar with content that changes every day. This unique setup gives families with young children numerous daily activities and a story to read together. The story, provided each day by One More Story, is in the form of an eBook that includes original music and sound effects, produced by former Sesame Street Music Director, Robby Merkin. In addition, the website includes monthly activities, storytelling and nursery rhyme videos, rhymes for young children, craft activities for children and their caregivers, a link to "Find Your Public Library," a New York State map of museums with activities for families with young children, health information, and reading lists. The website is designed to help parents and caregivers increase their young child's cognitive skills and have fun together at the same time.
EngageNY Updates

Grade 3 English Language Arts Module 3B
Grade 4 English Language Arts Module 3B 
Grade 5 English Language Arts Module 3B
Grade 6 English Language Arts Module 3B 
Grade 7 English Language Arts Module 4B 
Grade 8 English Language Arts Module 3B