October 16, 2018 - Volume 38 Issue 10


The West Virginia Board of Education School Finance and Funding Committee will meet October 17, 2018, at 1:00 p.m. in Capitol Building 6, Room 353, 1900 Kanawha Boulevard, East, Charleston, West Virginia.

According to a news release from the state Department of Education, the committee will discuss or possibly act on these items:

  • Student population attendees, trends, and characteristics, school site distribution per district, how determined and trends/population/geographic comparison, and ‘funding buckets’
  • Analysis of West Virginia Department of Education FY19 appropriation line-items in excess of $100,000,000

The Committee held its inaugural meeting on August 8.

According to the WVDE, the committee’s central purpose is to initiate discussions surrounding the adequacy of public education funding in West Virginia.

Past President of the West Virginia Board of Education (WVBE), Tom Campbell, CPA, serves as chair of the committee, which comprises a diverse group of stakeholders.

Ryan White, president of the Kanawha County Board of Education, serves as the West Virginia School Board Association (WVSBA) committee representative.

Additionally, state Board of Education members Scott Rotruck and Jim Wilson serve as members of the committee. Also serving on the committee are representatives from the West Virginia Association of School Administrators (WVASA), the American Federation of Teachers (AFT-WV), the West Virginia Education Association (WVEA), an elementary school principal, a high school principal and the West Virginia Department of Education’s Office of School Finance.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The West Virginia Board of Education (WVBE) adopted four policies during its monthly meeting this week. The meeting was held off-site in the media center of Petersburg High School in Grant County, W.Va. All policies were previously available online for a 30-day comment period, and comments were considered in the adopted policies. A brief description of each policy can be found below.

  • Policy 2520.8, West Virginia Driver Education Standards: The adopted policy further defines the standards used to prepare students with the knowledge and skills to safely operate a motor vehicle. The policy was modified to specifically address distracted driving, effective communication and interaction with law enforcement officers during traffic stops, sharing the road with large trucks and buses, and the dangerous impact of impaired driving. Overall, the adopted policy is aimed to provide knowledge to learning drivers, enabling them to make wise decisions and become responsible users of the highway transportation system. The approved policy is effective July 1, 2019.
  • Policy 3232, Establishment Procedures and Operating Policies for Multi County Career and Technical Education (CTE) Centers: Policy 3232 describes organizational and operational requirements for career and technical education centers serving more than one county. The updated and approved version more clearly defines the director and counselor roles, aiming to enhance the delivery of CTE programs to students across the Mountain State. Additionally, the updates serve to ensure West Virginia’s CTE programs are aligned to industry’s current and future workforce needs. The approved policy is effective 30 days from filing.
  • Policy 4321.1, Standards for School Nutrition: The adopted policy reflects revisions made to comply with HB 4478, also known as the “Shared Table” initiative. The revised policy allows schools to provide excess food to students who need it the most. A shared table can be used for students who wish to take extra food throughout the school day or provide a place for them to discretely take it home. Schools can better utilize unused food before it is thrown away. The approved policy is effective 30 days from filing.
  • Policy 5500, Professional Learning for West Virginia Educators: The adopted policy replaces the old, repealed version to address the changes HB 4006 made to W.Va. Code §18-21-1. The amended version informs counties to utilize targeted data sources to ensure locally determined professional learning needs for educators and allows counties to use Step 7d funding to assist with teacher and leader induction and professional growth and development. Collectively, these efforts prepare WV educators to meet the needs of all learners in their county, thus increasing student achievement statewide. The approved policy is effective 30 days from filing.

To review current WVBE policies visit: http://wvde.state.wv.us/policies/.

September 20, 2018

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – A variety of stakeholders, including educators, administrators and district representatives attended a two-day, multi-disciplinary workshop to discuss school safety challenges and highlights in September.

Held September 20 and 21 in Charleston, The West Virginia School Safety Planning Workshop was facilitated by the National Governors Association and the National School Safety Alliance in partnership with the West Virginia Department of Education and the office of West Virginia Homeland Security.

West Virginia School Board Association (WVSBA) Executive Director Howard M. O’Cull, Ed.D., represented WVSBA at that meeting.

“These multi-agency workshops are integral to truly addressing the challenges that schools face in the modern world,” Paine said. “It is important that stakeholders come together to make real progress in improving school safety and cultivating healthy students who are ready to learn. School safety must not only focus on security at our facilities, but supporting the social and emotional wellbeing of each and every student.”

During the workshop, participants discussed many aspects of school safety, including mental health and how to strengthen planning, coordination and collaboration across agencies. Stakeholders were also given an overview of current initiatives to improve school safety while identifying the unique challenges that are facing today’s students, educators and administrators.

“School safety is a priority for governors across the nation and states are taking the lead on developing proactive solutions to address this complex issue,” said Jeff McLeod, Division Director, Homeland Security & Public Safety Division at the National Governors Association. “NGA is grateful for the opportunity to support West Virginia’s school safety efforts and encourages states to bring together stakeholders across disciplines to discuss ways to strengthen planning, coordination and collaboration.”

The facilitators hope that workshops like this one will help to identify best practices that can guide schools throughout the state. Moving forward, leadership within the West Virginia Department of Education plans to grow the workshops into a statewide safety conference.

This workshop is the latest in a multifaceted effort by Superintendent Paine to dive deeper into school safety issues. In May of this year, Paine assembled 17 students from across the state to participate in the first Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council on Safe Schools. The Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council was established to provide a voice for the students of West Virginia public schools by representing and presenting the interests of the students to administrative and policy-making bodies. Insights from the meeting have been used to inform education leaders and policy-making bodies.

Results Provide Valuable Information on Schools’ Success and Areas Needing Improvement

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The West Virginia Department of Education (WVDE) unveiled the West Virginia Schools Balanced Scorecard (Balanced Scorecard), which outlines accountability ratings for each public school in the Mountain State as part of West Virginia’s School Accountability System (WVAS).

The Scorecard was released September 13.

Schools were evaluated on four indicators including academic performance, English learner proficiency, student success and a benchmark indicator at the elementary and middle school levels and graduation rates at the high school level. Each public school in the state will receive a scorecard that provides parents, students, educators and communities an annual update on multiple measures that together show how well students are learning, growing and achieving. The Balanced Scorecard is used to outline clear information on where schools are excelling and in what areas schools may need to improve.

The Balanced Scorecard also meets the school accountability requirements of the bipartisan Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), which reauthorized the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965. A major part of each state’s required ESSA plan is an accountability system that establishes annual measurable objectives.

“We chose to utilize a balanced scorecard to depict statewide accountability ratings in a more fair and accurate manner in order to accelerate student learning,” said West Virginia Superintendent of Schools Dr. Steven Paine. “The balanced scorecard allows schools to review multiple measures and more specifically pinpoint their strengths and weaknesses.”

The West Virginia Board of Education (WVBE) eliminated the A-F accountability system, previously used to outline accountability ratings, in favor of a balanced approach to school accountability. The Balanced Scorecard was chosen by the WVBE and tailored to meet the specific needs of West Virginia. The system helps ensure parents have objective information on their students’ academic achievement, while empowering state and district leaders to identify struggling students and schools.

The West Virginia Department of Education and county school systems will provide resources and support to schools, parents and teachers to increase student performance in areas of need for each school.

For more information on the Balanced Scorecard and to view school results, visit www.mywvschool.org.

August 14, 2018

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The West Virginia Board of Education (WVBE) convened a two-day professional learning session for its members this month to broaden their knowledge and understanding of key areas of board governance.

The training, held August 27- 28, in the WVBE Board Room (Building 6, room 353 of the State Capitol Complex), is the first of its kind in recent years, and will provide background information and insight in areas such as ethics law, school finance and policy procedures among others.

Because there are several new members of the WVBE, Board President David Perry believed it was important to dedicate time for professional development and training for all members.

“County boards of education have been doing this for years because they are required to complete seven hours of professional learning each year,” Perry said. “This Board has been exceptional in its commitment to our state, and this session is a way of supporting members as they continue to pursue and execute critical business on behalf of our education system,” he said.

Sessions will be led by WVDE staff experts, as well as those from other governmental agencies, and Robert Hull, executive vice president of the National Association of State Boards of Education.

West Virginia is one of approximately 20 states that require county boards of education to complete specific training relevant to their service and obligations as board members, and the WVBE’s session aligns consistently with what is already occurring locally, according to the state Department of Education.