The EdGate Observer





September 2013


In This Issue
Top Stories
Client Solution
Hot Topic
Common Core Update
Top Stories

Sesame Street Widens Its Focus

In the last four years, "Sesame Street" has set itself a much larger goal: teaching nature, math, science and engineering concepts and problem-solving to a preschool audience - with topics like how a pulley works or how to go about investigating what's making Mr. Snuffleupagus sneeze. Officials at the nonprofit educational organization that produces the show, believe the new approach has succeeded in introducing children - at least, the target-age audience - to scientific ideas and methods.


Top Ten Apps for Common Core State Standards: Language Arts

The Common Core Language Arts standards emphasize critical thinking (as do the math). Standards in each grade level also focus on narrative abilities. There are many great opportunities for the iPad to be used in these areas. Take a look at this list of favorite apps from a speech-language pathologist that allow educators to move away from worksheets and use technology in creative ways.


Educators and Parents Support the CCSS

In response to opposition to the Common Core State Standards from some political groups, School Improvement Network conducted a national survey of educators and commissioned a national telephone survey of parents to bring insight from two of the most significant stakeholders in education. Results show support for the Standards from both groups. 62% of parents say they support the Standards, and 81% of educators say the Standards will have a positive impact on students.


Texas SBOE Increases Transparency in Textbook Adoption Process

Publishers are asked to voluntarily make public any additional content they are proposing for new instructional materials. The board is in the process of adopting new materials for science for grades K-12, mathematics, K-8, and technology applications for use in Texas classrooms. A final vote on the submitted instructional materials will occur in November.

Read more at: Largest online textbook review under way


Minerva Project

A reinvented university experience for the brightest, most motivated students from around the world, today announced its undergraduate tuition will be $10,000 per year, which is approximately 25 percent the cost of tuition at other highly selective, private American universities. Minerva also announced it is now accepting applications for its Founding Class from students who plan to matriculate in Fall 2014.

Staff Highlight


We would like to introduce you to a member of our Technical Development Team,
James Lovato


James joined the EdGate team in 2012. He graduated from the University of Washington with a degree in Computing and Software Systems. Here at EdGate, he works with customers to develop solutions to integrate EdGate products into client's websites. He is responsible for analyzing, programming, documenting, debugging, and testing current and newly developed products. When not at work, James enjoys spending time with his young family.


 About Us



Founded in 1997, EdGate Correlation Services (EdGate) is a leader in the field of alignment solutions for educational companies around the world. 


The EdGate Standards Repository is the most comprehensive collection of national and international educational standards in all subject areas.


Through the power of our technology and the professional experience of our subject-area specialists, EdGate provides  accurate and continually updated correlations, on-demand correlation reporting capabilities, and effective website integration options.


EdGate can also deliver standards licensing, customized taxonomy solutions, correlation to assessment standards, and more.

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Welcome to The EdGate Observer!


Greetings everyone,


In this month's newsletter, we focus on the most recent education news pertaining to Pennsylvania's Core Standards Approved (Common Core Update), Who Will Lead the World in Making Physical Education a Core Subject? (Hot Topic), Basal Textbook Correlations (Client Solution), NSTA Portland Conference (EdGate Services) and following up with new additions to the EdGate Standards Repository (Standards Update).


As always, EdGate is your source for staying current with new developments in education and the impact of educational standards.   



Sandra Schugren, EdGate General Manager

Client Solution    




With the ever changing K-12 market, publishers are looking at new ways to leverage their reading programs and supplemental materials. Our solution of the month is basal textbook correlations!


In addition to our current extensive basal textbook correlations library we have just added Scott Foresman Reading Street 2013 to the EdGate Repository, and just last month we added McGraw-Hill Treasures 2011. In the coming months additions will include McGraw-Hill Reading Wonders 2014, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Journeys and National Geographic Reach for Reading.


These textbooks can be correlated to publisher materials based on tJWaughhe weekly/monthly themes or individual skill building activities for language arts grades K-6. If this is an area left unexplored in your company and you would like more information please contact me or your project manager. 


Project Manager

Hot Topic   




In June of this year, the BBC News reported that Paralympic multi-gold medalist Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson is chairing a group whose aim is to make physical education a core subject as a means of tackling that country's obesity problem. The Welsh government has responded that it will consider the recommendation.


Here in the U.S., the same recommendation was made in a report by the Committee on Physical Activity and Physical Education in the School Environment; Food and Nutrition Board; Institute of Medicine.


The report states, "Because physical education is foundational for lifelong health and learning, the U.S. Department of Education should designate physical education as a core subject." As its rationale for such an action, the report continues:


Nearly half (44 percent) of school administrators report having cut significant time from physical education and recess to increase time devoted to reading and mathematics since passage of the No Child Left Behind Act, which made federal funding dependent on schools making adequate progress in the latter subject areas. Moreover, disparities have been documented in access to physical education for students of Hispanic ethnicity and lower socioeconomic status.


Currently, despite growing concern about the negative consequences of physical inactivity, physical education is not considered or treated as a core subject. [. . .] Although a number of national governmental, nongovernmental, private industry, and public health organizations and agencies have offered specific recommendations for the number of days and minutes per day of physical education, no standardized state policy has emerged.


A prepublication copy of Educating the Student Body: Taking Physical Activity and Physical Education to School (2013) may be downloaded for free.

Project Manager

Common Core Update  




The Pennsylvania State Board of Education approved a new set of grade-level learning goals that come with the implementation of Pennsylvania's first-ever state graduation-testing requirement. The learning goals, called Pennsylvania Core Standards, spell out what students should be able to do at the end of each grade in math and language arts.


The proposed rules require students, starting with the Class of 2017, to demonstrate their proficiency in Algebra I, Biology I and Language Arts on a Keystone Exam, or one of the other state-approved alternative assessments, to graduate. It's a move the board sees as necessary to make high school diplomas more meaningful and to help standardize what students are being taught in schools.


The State Board adopted the Common Core standards in 2010 and put school districts on notice to start aligning their curriculum to them. While similar to the Common Core standards, the Pennsylvania Core Standards were developed by Pennsylvania educators and are more rigorous in some instances than Common Core.


To help differentiate the proposed standards from the ones the State Board adopted previously, the State Board has changed the name to Pennsylvania Core Standards.


An affirmative vote by the State Board will send the proposed final regulations through the state's rule-making process, which requires them to pass with the state House and Senate education committees. The state attorney general's office also must review the proposal, and the state's Independent Regulatory Review Commission must sign off on them before they can take effect.

EdgateServicesEdGate Services     




We are excited to be attending the upcoming regional NSTA conference in Portland, October 24-26. Two EdGate team members will be in attendance on Friday the 25th so please reach out and let us know if you will be there, as we would love to stop by and say hi! It would be a pleasure to connect face-to-face, learn more about your products, and how EdGate can support you in your initiatives. We are proud to say that, based on our history, expertise, and client satisfaction, EdGate is the leader in providing quality services!


In addition to the NSTA regional conference, EdGate will also be attending the following conferences scheduled through the end of the year:


iNACOL - October 27-28 in Orlando, FL

ACTFL - November 21-22 in Orlando, FL

NCTE - November 21-24 in Boston, MA

NAEYC - November 20-23 in Washington, DC


Contact your Account Representative for more information or to schedule an appointment. We look forward to seeing you there!


To reach Leslie Kolber, please email lkolber@edgate.com or to reach Tracy Olstad, please email tolstad@edgate.com.


  Leslie_Kolber The "EdGate Advantage is   Tracy_Olstad

YOUR Advantage"






Standards Update 


Updates to The EdGate Standards Repository include:  


� California Common Core - Science Literacy Grades 6-12 (2013)

� California Common Core - Social Studies Literacy Grades 6-12 (2013)

� CASAS Standards - English Language Learners (2008)

� College Board - AP Chemistry (2013)

� Michigan - Early Childhood Education (2013)

� Michigan - English Language Learners (WIDA 2013)

� Minnesota - Social Studies (2012)

� National Curriculum for England - Language Arts (2013)

If you have any questions regarding standards, feel free to contact me and I will be happy to assist you. You can always join us on Twitter and Facebook to receive notifications regarding state standards in the

EdGate Standards Repository at:





Kristie McCarley

EdGate Standards and Operations Manager