SB 1078, Now a Law, Allows Executive Session Safety and Security Discussions (July 27, 2018)

Last month, Senate Bill 1078 was signed into law and was added to the PA School Code. The new law allows school boards to discuss certain security measures as a group in executive session without fear of breaking the law. Although it does not give school boards unrestricted discretion to discuss all safety and security-related issues during an executive session, it does permit discussion in executive session where a public discussion regarding school safety measures would be reasonably likely to impair the effectiveness of measures to be taken and/or would likely jeopardize the school and/or an individual’s safety. The opportunity to discuss such topics in executive session will allow for information sharing between administration and the school board without compromising confidential information.

Wolf Selects PCCD Head to Lead New School Safety and Security Committee (July 26, 2018)

Governor Tom Wolf has chosen Charles Ramsey, the Chairman of the PA Commission on Crime and Delinquency, to assume leadership of the newly formed state School Safety and Security Committee, which is tasked to identify ways to help protect teachers and students in the school environment. It will also distribute $60 million in grants to school districts and other school entities which can help fund such things as security equipment, staff training, and facility improvements. The committee will also set standards for assessing the safety and security of school buildings, staff training, and help for students with behavioral health needs. It will also develop and conduct a survey to measure safety and security readiness.

AASA Releases Crisis Toolkit (July 25, 2018)

On July 12th, the AASA, The School Superintendents Association, released a toolkit for proactive best practices before, during, and after a crisis. It is titled “School Safety & Crisis Planning” and  includes a 24-hour hotline managed by Joseph Erardi, former superintendent of Newtown Public Schools. Resources were also contributed by the American School Counselor Association, the National Association of School Psychologists, the National School Boards Association, and the National School Public Relations Association.

As part of the toolkit, CrisisGo, an AASA School Solutions partner, is offering an emergency planning and communications platform to AASA members at no cost. The “AASA Safe Classroom” app allows school safety leaders to send audible emergency alerts and enable two-way communications to every computer and mobile device in the school.

AASA releases Crisis Toolkit (July 25, 2018)

On July 12th, the AASA, The School Superintendents Association, released a toolkit for proactive best practices before, during, and after a crisis. It is titled “School Safety & Crisis Planning” and  includes a 24-hour hotline managed by Joseph Erardi, former superintendent of Newtown Public Schools. Resources were also contributed by the American School Counselor Association, the National Association of School Psychologists, the National School Boards Association, and the National School Public Relations Association.

As part of the toolkit, CrisisGo, an AASA School Solutions partner, is offering an emergency planning and communications platform to AASA members at no cost. The “AASA Safe Classroom” app allows school safety leaders to send audible emergency alerts and enable two-way communications to every computer and mobile device in the school.

2018-19 CATS Secondary Program Approval File Deadline is May 31 (May 6, 2018)

The 2018-19 CATS Secondary Program Approval file is now open for new secondary CTE program approval requests.  The CATS file is a series of individual pages containing data elements pertaining to various aspects of approved CTE programs.  The Bureau recommends that approval for programs of study (POS) be sought for all programs for which a POS exists.  For programs for which a POS has not been developed, seek Tech Prep approval.  All approved programs must be delivered as POS or Tech Prep.  All industry certifications MUST be entered for the teacher and students.  The deadline for seeking new program approval is May 31, 2018. CATS can be accessed at the login on PDE’s homepage. If you have any questions, please contact Tammy Keisling, by phone (717)783-6996 or email tkeisling@pa.gov.