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Instructional Leaders Update

December 2010

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Greetings logo type
close-up of hand writingWelcome to the first edition of Instructional Leaders Update. Things seem to be happening on every front in education: new Common Core State Standards, new state assessments, and newly aligned instruction to match! To help you make sense of it all, we'll be reporting and updating you each month on all the newest developments. If something is time sensitive or requires your immediate attention, we'll notify you with an e-mail alert.

We were joined this month by Dr. Lynne Wells, our new Supervisor of Instructional Services. She will be point person for all things related to Race to the Top. Please contact Lynne at or 464-3985, or contact me at or 862-4930 if you have questions.

Best wishes for a joyous holiday season!

Kathryn A. Gerbino, Assistant District Superintendent for Instruction
Important Dates heading


Overview of ELA and Math Common Core State Standards, scheduled for 3 locations (click the link to register via MyLearningPlan):

Albany County (BOCES, 900 Watervliet-Shaker Road), January 6 - ELA at 8 a.m. or math at 11:45 a.m.

Schoharie County (Cobleskill/Richmondville Central Schools), January 13 - math at 8:15 a.m. or ELA at noon

Schenectady County (Ellis Hospital, Schenectady), January 21 - ELA at noon or math at 8:15 a.m.

For more details: visit MyLearningPlan




Common Core State Standards

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The Common Core State Standards provide a consistent, clear understanding of what students are expected to learn, so all stakeholders know what they need to do to help students be successful. As part of the Race to the Top agenda, New York will develop models for English Language Arts and mathematics. This common set of academic standards for students will help create a common set of rigorous student achievement expectations across the country to prepare students for college and career readiness.

Below are links on the NYS Education Department website to assist you in understanding the Common Core at a deeper level:




Tool kit


Standards Review


Assessments & Use of Data

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Data update PowerPoint

Ken Wagner, assistant commissioner for data systems for the NYS Education Department, gave an informative update on data in December. Download the presentation PowerPoint (PDF)


Great Teachers & Leaders

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Understanding and addressing the new mandates will be challenging for us all. The regulations regarding the implementation of this process are incomplete. We expect the work of the joint task force to be discussed and most likely adopted at the January Regents meeting. There is definitely more information to come. Review what we know currently.


Educational Systems Quality Review

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RTTT is challenging us as leaders to move our staff and schools through a significant change process. The focus is on curriculum, assessment and other familiar educational arenas. It is important to keep in mind all of the critical elements that ensure system, staff and student effectiveness and success. Taking a look at these key areas, such as school climate and culture, must not be forgotten. Download a brochure about the Capital Region BOCES Educational Systems Review process that several area schools are currently engaged in (PDF)


Other News

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National Staff Development (applicable to Inquiry Team Training, but not required)

Professional development is at the heart of effective teaching and school reform. Current economic and educational climates, especially new regulations about standards and assessing student learning, require districts to develop effective, focused and efficient district capacity for professional learning. Designing, implementing and evaluating essential and effective teams for educators of widely varying assignments and levels of experience is both a critical and complicated endeavor.

This institute will provide instruction on designing and facilitating focused and strategic professional learning around a wide variety of work. Topics will include:

-Use of data to inform decision making

-Developing adult learning facilitation and coaching skills

-Protocols, facilitation, and presentation skills around collaborative professional learning

-Skills around building and sustaining professional learning communities.

-Team building

-Trust/Building Relationships

**Date and location for this training are being determined, and will be posted on MyLearningPlan when they are set.**


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Instructional Leaders Update

is a publication of Capital Region BOCES.
Questions? Contact Assistant District Superintendent for
Instruction Kathryn Gerbino at 862-4930.




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