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Request for Waiver of Provisions Support Letter 6

Support letter from Mary Jane Burke requesting a waiver of provisions of sections of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

Accessible Alternative Version of the letter from Mary Jane Burke, page 29-30 of the Waiver Support Letters (PDF; 4MB).
This document provides text translation of the letter of support from Mary Jane Burke regarding the Request for Waiver of Provisions letter.


{Logo of the Marin County Office of Education}

MARIN COUNTY
OFFICE OF EDUCATION

BUILDING THE FUTURE ... ONE STUDENT AT A TIME

1111 LAS GALLINAS AVENUE/P.O. BOX 4925
SAN RAFAEL, CA 94913-4925
marincoe@marin.k12.ca.us

MARY JANE BURKE
MARIN COUNTY SUPERINTENDENT OF SCHOOLS
415-472-4110
FAX 415-491-6625

{Received stamp from the State Board of Education, June 1, 11:48AM}

May 29, 2012

Michael Kirst, President
California State Board of Education
California Department of Education
1430 N Street
Sacramento, CA 95814

Dear Dr. Kirst,

This letter is to express my strongest possible support for California’s “state defined” waiver request which will be before you on or after June 7, 2012.

We commend the Governor, State Board of Education and State Superintendent Tom Torlakson for strengthening California’s request for a general waiver. It is essential that we are successful in our waiver request and are relieved from the current over-identification of schools and districts in program improvement. As school districts struggle during difficult financial times, we have an urgent need for greater spending flexibility to increase student achievement. Lastly, we need to transition to a single, transparent, state accountability system, as the current practice of reporting scores on dual accountability systems is confusing and incomprehensible to the general public.

Schools and districts in Marin County have continued to show impressive growth on our API scores. Yet, out of the many measures of AYP that we have met, one subgroup not meeting AYP has put schools into Program Improvement, undermining public confidence and teacher morale, instead of recognizing the growth and achievement that has been accomplished.

We believe evolving our current API system is best for California and its students. It is generally agreed that the focus on the more onerous status bar model of AYP has been an impediment to our moving forward to improve our API. California has been and will remain committed to continuous student achievement for all students and all subgroups.

We appreciate the timelines outlined in the waiver which demonstrate a strong commitment on the part of the State to consider revisions to the API (January 2013), determination of targeted schools and districts for improvement (March 2013) and identification of sanctions (interventions) based on the severity and persistence of underachievement problems (July 2013). We stand ready to assist our state and we assure you of our continued commitment to strong accountability measures on behalf of our students.

Thank you for supporting and strengthening the waiver request. It is time to move it forward so that we can continue to improve the education we provide to the children of California.

Sincerely,

{Signature of Mary Jane Burke}

Mary Jane Burke
Marin County Superintendent of Schools

Questions:   State Board of Education | 916-319-0827
Last Reviewed: Tuesday, April 5, 2016
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