Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Q-Comp Report Released. The Office of the Legislative Auditor released its highly-anticipated report on Q-Comp today and presented it in both the Senate and House K-12 Funding Divisions. Legislative Auditor James Nobles and Evaluation Manager Judy Randall, pictured on the right, presented the report with their usual professionalism and the findings, while not surprising, were quite firmly stated.

The report, while I would say written in a tone that appreciates the difficulty in establishing and implementing this progam, does make several key points that show, if not shortcomings, questions about how the program has progressed.

The key findings are:
  • Q-Comp's effects on student achievement cannot be measured using existing tools,
  • MDE's application process is inconsistent as applicants are often held to different standards, and,
  • Not all Q-Comp participants are subject to regular oversight by MDE.
I would venture that these findings are consistent with the observation of most SEE member districts. We have all heard the rumors of inconsistent qualification standards and how different districts submitting similar applications met with different fates in terms of being accepted by MDE.

One of the key points brought up in the Senate was the absence of equity in the program, as the balance between metropolitan and rural districts (at least the number of students served in Q-Comp districts) is heavily tilted toward the metropolitan area. This is hardly rocket science and it was one of the complaints I registered early in the Q-Comp discussion. Districts that have the administrative staff to dedicate to developing the program and the resources to put teachers on leave to design the new pay scale and work to have it implemented will probably be able to both put together a successful application and make that successful application work more ably than a district lacking those resources. Duh!

Link to Legislative Auditor's Report on Q-Comp: http://www.auditor.leg.state.mn.us/ped/2009/qcomp.htm

AMSD Hosting Forum with Congresswoman Betty McCollum. AMSD will be hosting a 90-minute forum with Congresswoman Betty McCollum on Monday, February 9, from 11:00 to 12:30 in the Great Hall of the TIES Building at 1667 Snelling Avenue (the southwest corner of Larpenteur and Snelling just North of the State Fairgrounds). There is a lot of chatter about the education funding in the federal stimulus package and Congresswoman McCollum serves on the House Appropriations Committee and the House Budget Committee and the Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Budget Subcommittee, all of which were instrumental in designing the stimulus package.

This forum will provide interested parties with the opportunity to get clarity on the education provisions in the bill.

Please call 651-999-7325 or e-mail ldale@amsd.org to RSVP if you are interested in attending.

No comments: