Mike Laster and Team on Vimeo
Mike Laster, Principal of the Farnsworth Middle School, talks about the benefit for a new administrator to participate in the EE: STW program. The Essential Elements: Schools-to-Watch program in NY recognizes exemplary middle school programs. The program is a partnership between the National Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform, the NYS Middle School Association, and the NYS Education Department.


Special Updates!

Regents Take Emergency Regulatory Action

on Career and Technical Education for Grades 7 & 8

What Happened?

On May 9, 2017 the Board of Regents met and voted to adopt, through emergency action, the recommendations detailed in the item, “Unit of Study Requirements for Career and Technical Education in Grades 7 and 8” (click here for link to the memo). The Board’s vote enabled a change in the middle level regulation language that governs Career and Technical Education (CTE).

Why Did The Regents Take This Action?  (NYSED Slide Presentation on flexibility)

This action was taken to address concerns voiced by school superintendents to senior NYSED leadership about difficulties in finding Technology and FACS teachers to fill open positions, issues of scheduling two discrete CTE courses in the prescribed units of study, and providing middle-level students with broad-based CTE learning experiences.

The emergency action allows districts with 2017-18 job openings for technology teachers or for FACS teachers to look to the expanded pool of all CTE certified teachers for recruitment into open positions. This option is available for all schools beginning in 2018-19 assuming the Board continues its approval.

Who would qualify as a CTE teacher?  (NYSED Fact Sheet link)

Any teacher certified in the six CTE areas: Technology Education, Business Education (K-12 Classroom titles), FACS, Agriculture (K-12 Classroom Titles), and CTE titles in Trade/Technical and Health Sciences.

What will the 1 ¾ unit of middle-level CTE look like?

Local school districts will determine the best delivery model for high-quality middle-level CTE instruction. Districts that have effective FACS and Technology Education programs could continue to meet the unit of study requirements in the traditional manner. Districts that wish to explore new ways can do so by creating articulated programs that align to available CTE, STEM, or CDOS pathways at the high school or Districts can address the intermediate standards and, when available, provide accelerated CTE instruction for students in grade 8.  Options under Models A, B, and C were not addressed but still exist in regulation.

 What is the Timeline?

The emergency rule became effective July 1, 2017. A 45-day public comment period is now open. The Board of Regents will revisit this action at their September meeting, and if adopted, the regulation change will become a permanent rule on September 27, 2017.


NYSMSA 2017 Annual Conference Information – Saratoga Springs

The conference committee for the 2017 conference has been hard at work and much of the planning has been completed. The conference will be hosted in Saratoga Springs, October 19 – 21, 2017. Keynote speaker is the incredible Jack Berckemeyer, and over 100 workshops have been planned. The embedded links provide the Announcement Flier and Tourism Information on the areas of interest in and around Saratoga Springs. Tickets for those interested in the Fall Foliage Train Ride from Saratoga to North Creek and back sell out almost six months ahead of time, so if interested in this while continuing your weekend in Saratoga after the conference ends, get your reservations in early.