Chancellor's Recent Speeches
California County Superintendents of Schools
Thank you for that warm welcome. I appreciate the opportunity to talk about the work we are doing together and what we can do in the future for our students.
I can say one thing for sure about our educational system: We face a far different environment today than we did just over a month ago.
The world changed forever on September 11.
This new world is filled with uncertainty: We don't know how different it will look a year from now or even a month from now. Look how much changed in the past month.
But one thing is certain: Our jobs will be more important than ever. That's because education will be a critical part of our society's ability to adjust to this new world. We'll need to help students understand more about Eastern cultures, religions, and tolerance. We'll also need to talk more about safety at a time when our country faces many threats.
I see us all as partners in the education of California's students. And I look forward to working with you on meeting the needs of those students in these difficult times and the uncertain future. Our collaboration is essential to our success.
Having said that much, I wanted to bring you up to date on a few of our projects.
Teacher Education Evaluation
First - An update on our teacher education programs:
As you may know, the CSU prepares about 60 percent of California's teachers and about half of its administrators. But quality is our primary goal.
We know that teacher quality is the most significant factor in student achievement - we've seen the research. That's why we decided to do a thorough evaluation of the quality of our teacher education programs - the first systemwide evaluation in the country.
We knew that we would find areas that needed improvement. In fact, we looked for them. The whole idea was to ensure that our programs are of the highest possible quality.
Overall, many CSU graduates are well prepared to be teachers. Some others are not as well prepared as we want them to be. Interestingly, principals and administrators gave our graduates better marks than the graduates did about themselves.
A few more conclusions:
In general, the CSU appears to prepare teachers who are well or adequately prepared for the rigors of teaching. We will continue to look for more areas of improvement.
Other Efforts - Professional Development
Along with improving teacher preparation, we are working on several other projects to assist and partner with K-12. For instance, in professional development:
Other Efforts - CSU/ACSA Partnership
We are also looking at administrative preparation - especially the need for more and better-prepared school principals.
The CSU and the Association of California School Administrators (ACSA) are collaborating on a proposal to initiate a partnership program in this area. This proposal would link ACSA, districts, and universities to provide more relevant Tier II preparation programs.
We could also meet the goals of AB 75 through this type of partnering.
We hope that by working at the district, county, and state levels, we can serve all schools: large and small, urban and rural. The group will meet next on Oct. 30.
Other Efforts - Preparing School Leaders
Also, I have been working with former New York City Schools Chancellor Rudy Crew and the Stupski Foundation, Dave Gordon, and others on an experimental alternative program for future school leaders.
This group is designing a program that is based on the new California Professional Standards for School Leadership, as well as five unique standards. The five standards are:
-- Supervision and Evaluation of Staff
The partnership participants are:
-- West Contra Costa School District, with CSU Hayward
We will be writing a series of reports on this pilot project, analyzing its success and looking at implications for future projects.
Other Efforts - Testing Alignment
One other project I wanted to call to your attention is our effort to align the CSU placement tests with the new California Standards Tests that are under development.
If we can agree with policymakers to have the 11th grade standards tests cover the right material in English and mathematics, California could offer one test for 11th grade achievement and college placement.
Of course, we're still in the discussion stage with statewide education officials. We're trying to iron out a few details, like including a writing portion in the test. But if we can reach agreement, we could have a pilot version as early as spring.
Last, but not least, I want to call your attention to the CSU's effort to offer an education doctorate.
I know that you know all about the need for more well-prepared educational leaders. However, our state's existing applied doctoral programs in education have not produced the number of graduates that California needs.
The CSU is seeking the authorization to offer this critical degree. We believe that our system can offer three key advantages: access, affordability, and expertise.
We have a bill, SB 713, which will go to the Senate Education Committee in January. We have earned a great deal of support from K-12 and community college individuals and organizations who understand the important need for this degree.
I especially appreciate the support of those county superintendents who have formally endorsed SB 713:
John Boyd, Sutter County
Thank you very much. I would like to ask all of you, individually and as an organization, to help us in this effort.
We consider California's K-12 educators to be our partners in this effort. If we are authorized to offer this degree, we will be consulting with you about the details of the program and its implementation, and for more specifics about your local needs.
That wraps up my update on the CSU. Again, I'd like to thank you for including our university system in your dialogue. I would be glad to hear your feedback or take any questions that you might have.