[Senate Hearing 111-1116] [From the U.S. Government Publishing Office] S. Hrg. 111-1116 ESEA REAUTHORIZATION: MEETING THE NEEDS OF THE WHOLE STUDENT ======================================================================= HEARING OF THE COMMITTEE ON HEALTH, EDUCATION, LABOR, AND PENSIONS UNITED STATES SENATE ONE HUNDRED ELEVENTH CONGRESS SECOND SESSION ON EXAMINING ELEMENTARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION ACT (ESEA) REAUTHORIZATION, FOCUSING ON MEETING THE NEEDS OF THE WHOLE STUDENT __________ APRIL 22, 2010 __________ Printed for the use of the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions
Available via the World Wide Web: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/ U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE 56-196 PDF WASHINGTON : 2012 ----------------------------------------------------------------------- For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office Internet: bookstore.gpo.gov Phone: toll free (866) 512-1800; DC area (202) 512-1800 Fax: (202) 512-2104 Mail: Stop IDCC, Washington, DC 20402-0001 COMMITTEE ON HEALTH, EDUCATION, LABOR, AND PENSIONS TOM HARKIN, Iowa, Chairman CHRISTOPHER J. DODD, Connecticut MICHAEL B. ENZI, Wyoming BARBARA A. MIKULSKI, Maryland JUDD GREGG, New Hampshire JEFF BINGAMAN, New Mexico LAMAR ALEXANDER, Tennessee PATTY MURRAY, Washington RICHARD BURR, North Carolina JACK REED, Rhode Island JOHNNY ISAKSON, Georgia BERNARD SANDERS (I), Vermont JOHN McCAIN, Arizona SHERROD BROWN, Ohio ORRIN G. HATCH, Utah ROBERT P. CASEY, JR., Pennsylvania LISA MURKOWSKI, Alaska KAY R. HAGAN, North Carolina TOM COBURN, M.D., Oklahoma JEFF MERKLEY, Oregon PAT ROBERTS, Kansas AL FRANKEN, Minnesota MICHAEL F. BENNET, Colorado Daniel Smith, Staff Director Frank Macchiarola, Republican Staff Director and Chief Counsel (ii) C O N T E N T S __________ STATEMENTS THURSDAY, APRIL 22, 2010 Page Harkin, Hon. Tom, Chairman, Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, opening statement......................... 1 Enzi, Hon. Michael B., a U.S. Senator from the State of Wyoming, prepared statement............................................. 2 Isakson, Hon. Johnny, a U.S. Senator from the State of Georgia... 3 Reed, Hon. Jack, a U.S. Senator from the State of Rhode Island... 4 Canada, Geoff, President and CEO, Harlem Children's Zone, New York, NY....................................................... 5 Prepared statement........................................... 6 Pittman, Karen, Co-Founder, President, and CEO, Forum for Youth Investment, Washington, DC..................................... 10 Prepared statement........................................... 11 Schwarz, Eric, Co-Founder and CEO, Citizens Schools, Boston, MA.. 16 Prepared statement........................................... 16 Sugai, George, Ph.D., Professor and Carole J. Neag Endowed Chair, Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports, Storrs, CT....... 25 Prepared statement........................................... 26 Greene, Jamie, President, Rhode Island School Library Association, Warren, RI........................................ 27 Prepared statement........................................... 28 Struck, Clare, Elementary Counselor, Price Lab School, Cedar Falls, IA...................................................... 30 Prepared statement........................................... 31 Rittling, Nikki, Educator, Wonderful Willards Elementary School, Willards, MD................................................... 38 Prepared statement........................................... 39 Jefferies, Lynsey Wood, Executive Director, DC Metro Higher Achievement, Washington, DC.................................... 41 Prepared statement........................................... 42 Henderson, Anne T., Senior Consultant, Community Organizing and Engagement, Annenberg Institute for School Reform, Washington, DC............................................................. 45 Prepared statement........................................... 46 Cardinali, Daniel J., President, Communities in Schools, Arlington, VA.................................................. 53 Prepared statement........................................... 59 Bennet, Hon. Michael F., a U.S. Senator from the State of Colorado....................................................... 63 Franken, Hon. Al, a U.S. Senator from the State of Minnesota..... 65 Dodd, Hon. Christopher J., a U.S. Senator from the State of Connecticut.................................................... 68 ADDITIONAL MATERIAL Statements, articles, publications, letters, etc.: Al Brandel, Lions Club International......................... 85 Lynn E. Linde, Ed.D., American Counseling Association (ACA).. 87 (iii) ESEA REAUTHORIZATION: MEETING THE NEEDS OF THE WHOLE STUDENT ---------- THURSDAY, APRIL 22, 2010 U.S. Senate, Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, Washington, DC. The committee met, pursuant to notice, at 10:09 a.m. in Room SD-106, Dirksen Senate Office Building, Hon. Tom Harkin, Chairman of the committee, presiding. Present: Senators Harkin, Dodd, Reed, Hagan, Franken, Bennet, and Isakson. Opening Statement of Senator Harkin The Chairman. The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions will please come to order. I would like to thank all of you for being here today as we continue our series of hearings in discussing the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. Through our previous hearings, we have gained valuable insight into the need for education reform, insight into the Administration's views on how best to meet this challenge. We have heard of various efforts around the country to turn around our lowest performing schools, how to recruit and develop talented educators and school leaders. Today, we will hear from experts who specialize in addressing the needs of the whole student. Research proves that students learn best when their academic, emotional, physical, and social needs are all met. Twenty-first century jobs require that our students graduate with not only a strong foundation in reading, writing, math, and other core subjects, but also in the ability to work in teams, think critically, communicate effectively, and be able to solve complex problems. More importantly, our civic strength rests on educating our children to appreciate the diversity in the world around them. The current No Child Left Behind Act mostly focuses on academic achievement. Obviously, that is critically important. As I am beginning to learn, I think others are pointing out-- that is part of a complete educational system. One of the most stinging criticisms leveled at the No Child Left Behind Act is that it has caused schools, especially those serving disadvantaged students, to narrow the curriculum and rely on what is called a ``drill and kill'' approach to teaching. Obviously, these were not requirements of Federal law, but it is important to explore why that is happening and what we need to do about it. For example, is it a result of trying to teach a set of skills and knowledge needed for a 21st century economy in a school day designed for the industrial age and a school year based on an agrarian calendar? Do schools need more time to help students reach higher expectations? Or is it because educators do not have the curricular tools and training they need to create rich, interdisciplinary courses that teach reading and math without losing students' interest? If schools are not meeting students' basic health and nutrition and other needs--things that are necessary for academic success--are there approaches, such as those we will hear about today pioneered by the Harlem Children's Zone or Communities In Schools. I just mention two of them--that can help them succeed? I believe it is essential that we support every aspect of the development of our students to maximize their chances of success in school and in life. I think it is incumbent upon us to take a look at the broad array of things that are going on out there, in elementary and secondary education, where we can see very successful patterns that people have pioneered that might point us in the right direction as we reauthorize this important bill. I look forward to hearing from our witnesses about their thoughts on what it takes to address the needs of the whole child, the whole student, and how we can best measure the effectiveness of programs and activities that are addressing these issues. Senator Enzi cannot be here right now. He has a mark-up he must attend to. We are honored to have Senator Isakson as our Ranking Member today. With that, I now turn to Senator Isakson. Senator Isakson. Well, thank you very much, Chairman Harkin. I would like to ask unanimous consent that the statement of Senator Enzi be included in the record. The Chairman. Without objection. [The prepared statement of Senator Enzi follows:] Prepared Statement of Senator Enzi Thank you, Senator Harkin, for holding this roundtable as part of our series of hearings on the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. I also want to thank each of our witnesses for joining us today. I apologize that I am not able to be there this morning, but have read your statements and will be submitting questions to each of you to be answered for the record. As we have progressed through this series of hearings I have two key questions in mind. First, what can we do to fix the current version of ESEA--commonly known as the No Child Left Behind Act? Second, how will any proposed changes effect or impact schools and school districts in rural areas? These two questions are particularly important for this roundtable. The role of school personnel such as counselors and librarians can be very different in rural Wyoming compared to urban settings. Many of the smallest schools in Wyoming are lucky to have even a small collection of books, referred to as the library, let alone a trained librarian. In rural communities across Wyoming the utilization of outside partners is very different from what we will hear about today from the participants and from what we heard about last week from Chancellor Joel Klein and Beverly Donohue. Few communities in Wyoming are large enough to support nonprofit agencies with which they can partner, but that doesn't mean that the community is not involved in schools. I travel to every county in Wyoming at least every 2 years and am often struck by the strong sense of community I encounter. This demonstrates itself not only during the fall football season or the spring rodeo season, but also when families are struggling and need the support of the community. Today's topic is definitely one area where one size cannot, and does not, fit all. An afterschool program in Washington, DC has to support different student needs compared to an afterschool program in Lander, WY. Extended learning time programs will look and operate differently in urban compared to rural settings. The Federal policy that we set must recognize and embrace these differences and allow programs the flexibility to meet the needs of the students, teachers, and parents they serve. Finally, I do want to talk for a moment about the importance of parental involvement in the education of children. Parents are a child's first, and often most important, teacher. I am amazed when I watch my grandchildren discover new things and learn how the world around them operates. Parental involvement is essential to the success of any student, and is key to the quality of a school. I will continue to support parental involvement and parental options for students as we work on this reauthorization of ESEA. I want to thank each of the participants for being here today and for sharing their perspectives. Statement of Senator Isakson Senator Isakson. I will just take a minute to open. This is a very important hearing, and I apologize. I will slip out for a minute, but I am coming back because I recognize the value of those testifying today, for a couple of particular reasons. One, when I chaired the Board of Education in Georgia, I brought Communities In Schools to our State 14 years ago, and I saw the remarkable difference they made in what I would refer to as nontraditional students, who are students that the system, one way or another, was losing, and turned those students around and met the needs of those students. I was also chairman of the State Board of Education when the university system of Georgia raised the mathematics Carnegie unit requirement from 3 to 4 for a college preparatory diploma and held a hearing attended by 5,000 angry arch band, PE, and music students who were going--or parents who were going to lose their students' ability to take arts or PE as an elective because of the additional math they were being required to take in terms of the university requirements. I understand the rich diversity that is represented here. What Mr. Canada has done in Harlem, what so many of you have done to reach nontraditional students in an afterschool framework or in the academic framework is very important. When we re-craft and reauthorize ESEA, it is very important for us to understand that there are a lot of moving parts in the whole student, and we don't have to have such a rigid regimen of Federal compliance that by its very application constrains the ability to meet the needs of nontraditional students and schools. I look forward to this. I appreciate the chairman calling this hearing today, and I appreciate all of you who have come to testify for your time and for what you do for the children of America. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. The Chairman. Thank you very much, Senator Isakson. Before we get started, let me take a moment to introduce each of the witnesses and sort of talk about how we do this here. First, we have Geoffrey Canada, president and CEO of the Harlem Children's Zone, which uses a comprehensive model to address the educational, developmental, social and medical needs of children, families, and communities. Then we have Karen Pittman, president and CEO of the Forum for Youth Investment, a nonprofit organization that provides assistance to States and communities to develop policies and practices that improve student outcomes and support positive youth development. After Ms. Pittman, we have Eric Schwarz, co-founder and CEO of Citizen Schools, a nonprofit organization that partners with middle schools to expand the learning day for low-income children to better engage students and to increase achievement. Next, we have Dr. George Sugai, director of the Center for Behavioral Education and Research. His research focuses on strategies to improve social and behavioral outcomes for students. I want to recognize Senator Jack Reed to introduce our next witness, Ms. Greene. Statement of Senator Reed Senator Reed. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman, not only for recognition, but also for holding this hearing. We have assembled quite a group of experts and leaders in the education community. I am delighted to introduce Jamie Greene, who hails from Little Compton, RI. Jamie is the president of the Rhode Island Educational Media Association, where she acts as an advocate for students' access to libraries, school libraries in particular. And she has been a school librarian herself at Cole Elementary School in Warren, RI, for 8 years. She is one of our leading lights when it comes to libraries and education and teaching. Thank you very much, Jamie. I also notice Harris Wofford out there, who is not an elementary school teacher, but a colleague. Thank you. The Chairman. Good to see you, Harris. Thank you very much, Senator Reed. Following Ms. Greene, we will hear from Clare Struck from the No. 1 State in the Nation, whose name I don't even have to mention. [Laughter.] Clare is an elementary school counselor at the Malcolm Price Laboratory School in Cedar Falls, IA. Founded at the University of Northern Iowa, the Price Lab School has been recognized for their work in developing students' knowledge, health, civic-mindedness, artistic, and real-life aptitude. As the first winner of the ASCD Whole Child Award last month, Clare has been instrumental in developing and implementing Iowa's school counseling framework. Next we have Nikki Rittling, a physical education teacher and team leader of the integration network at Wonderful Willards Elementary School in Maryland. After that, we will hear from Lynsey Wood Jefferies, the executive director of Higher Achievement in Washington, DC. Following Lynsey, we will hear from Ms. Anne Henderson, a senior consultant for community organizing and engagement at the Annenberg Institute for School Reform. And finally, Mr. Dan Cardinali, president of Communities In Schools, will wrap up our testimony. Communities In Schools is a national organization that works to connect community resources with schools to help young people succeed. We will proceed in a roundtable format. All of your statements will be made a part of the record in their entirety. I read through them last night before I went to bed, and they are all very good. I ask that you give me your best thoughts in a couple of minutes. Your clock says 2 minutes. I know that doesn't sound like much time, but again, I want to better understand the one or two things that highlight what you or your organization has done to focus on the needs of the whole student? I ask for the highlights because I want to engage into a discussion, rather than a formal presentation. Once we hear from each of you, I will ask the Senators who are here, who want to be recognized, turn your name plate up. Then I will call on you. I don't have any regular order here or anything like that. We just want to get into a general free-flowing discussion concerning this whole student approach and how you think we ought to be approaching it in the reauthorization. Fair enough? With that, I will turn to Mr. Canada, and we will just go down the line like that. STATEMENT OF GEOFF CANADA, PRESIDENT AND CEO, HARLEM CHILDREN'S ZONE, NEW YORK, NY Mr. Canada. Great. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. Thank you, Senators, for having us here. Let me say that I know this collection of peers, and you have really assembled an all-star team of people. I am excited to be included in this group. My interest in the whole child really came from my work in central Harlem. I have been working in that same community for 27 years, and I have watched young people simply fail decade after decade after decade. The education system just insists on doing the same thing that failed in the 1970s. They want to do it in the 1980s, and then they do it in the 1990s. I really began to push that we need to bring real change into education. We thought in communities where kids are failing in record numbers, you can not just do one thing, that you really have to meet all of the needs of that child. We work in a 97-block area. We try and make sure we get adults involved. We start with children at birth, and we stay with those children until they graduate from college. We provide health services and social services and dental services. We have a core group of social workers that work with the families because you can't save children if their families are falling apart all around you. We have also gotten involved in running schools because we think that we have to innovate in schools. Mr. Chairman, you mentioned, you know, the agrarian school system. Our schools are open 11 months a year because that is what it takes for our kids to be successful. If I could do it shorter, I would. We can't. But in the end, we have to make sure children succeed. We think that, in the end, you have to create for young people a series of supports that really meets all of their needs. We have great sports teams, great arts teams, as well as great academic programs for our young people. And so that is what we found it took in Harlem to change the cycle of children failing to one where they succeed. [The prepared statement of Mr. Canada follows:] Prepared Statement of Geoffrey Canada summary Thank you for this opportunity to speak in support of comprehensive services for poor children and President Obama's Promise Neighborhoods program which I believe will break the cycle of generational poverty for hundreds of thousands of poor children. Like our work at the Harlem Children's Zone (HCZ), Promise Neighborhoods will transform the odds for entire communities. High- achieving schools must be at the core of Promise Neighborhoods, but it is not only about creating a successful school. It is about programs for children from birth through college, supporting families and rebuilding community. Doing this changes the trajectory of an entire community. In the mid-1990s it became clear to me that despite heroic efforts at saving poor children, success stories remained the exception. Our piecemeal approach was of limited value against a perfect storm of problems and challenges. So we created the HCZ project in Central Harlem in order to work with kids, their families and their community. Starting with one building, we have grown to 97 blocks. Last year, the HCZ Project served 14,230 clients including 8,163 youth and 6,067 adults. HCZ, Inc., which includes the HCZ Project plus our Beacon Centers and Preventive Foster Care programs, served 21,279 clients including 10,462 youth and 10,817 adults. Our theory of change is embodied in the application of all of the following five principles:
Serve an entire neighborhood comprehensively and at scale. Create a pipeline of high-quality programs that starts from birth and continues to serve children until they graduate from college. Provide parents with supports as well. Build community among residents, institutions, and stakeholders, who help to create the environment necessary for children's healthy development. Evaluate program outcomes; create a feedback loop that cycles data back to management for use in improving and refining program offerings; and hold people accountable. Cultivate a culture of success rooted in passion, accountability, leadership, and teamwork. Ten years later, the Children's Zone model is working. Parents are reading more to their children. Four-year-olds are school-ready. Students are closing the black-white achievement gap in several subjects. Teenagers are graduating from high school and going to college in record numbers. Parents are filing for EITC and spending their returns locally. The HCZ model is not cheap. We spend on average $5,000 per child each year to ensure our children's success. For far less money than we are already spending on incarceration, we can educate, graduate our children, and bring them back to our communities ready to be successful, productive citizens. We think the choice is obvious. HCZ's achievements are not magic. They are a result of hard work and a comprehensive effort. I applaud the President for taking the war on poverty to the next phase and I urge you to support Promise Neighborhoods. ______ Chairman Harkin, Ranking Member Enzi and members of the committee: Good Morning. I am Geoffrey Canada, President/CEO of the Harlem Children's Zone, and President of the Harlem Children's Zone Promise Academy Charter Schools. Thank you for this opportunity to speak broadly in support of comprehensive services for children within the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act; and more specifically for President Obama's Promise Neighborhoods program. I believe Promise Neighborhoods will break the cycle of generational poverty for hundreds of thousands of poor children in America. Like our work at the Harlem Children's Zone (HCZ), Promise Neighborhoods will transform the odds for entire communities by addressing the needs of the whole child. High-achieving schools must be at the core of Promise Neighborhoods, but it is not only about creating a successful school. It is about programs for children from birth through college, supporting families and rebuilding community. By providing the same level of comprehensive supports found in middle class communities, Promise Neighborhoods will change the trajectory of entire communities of poor children. The challenges facing poor urban and rural communities across America are the same ones we face in Central Harlem, a community in New York City where I have worked for over 25 years. The fabric of the community is in tatters. Things that middle-class communities take for granted--working schools, useable playgrounds, decent housing, supportive religious institutions, functioning civic organizations, safe streets--are all but nonexistent. When they do exist, their effectiveness is marginalized by a toxic culture that overwhelms any small scale efforts. As today's poor children enter tomorrow's economy, under-educated and ill-prepared, the cost to America's future competitiveness in the world marketplace is incalculable. In fact, 75 percent of young people in the United States today can't join the military because they are too poorly educated, are overweight or have a criminal record.\1\ In America's inner cities, more than half of all black men do not finish high school.\2\ The impact of this is devastating communities: ``By their mid-30's, 6 in 10 black men who had dropped out of school had spent time in prison.'' \3\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \1\ Mission Readiness, Ready Willing, And Unable To Serve. (Washington, DC: Mission Readiness, 2009) \2\ Eckholm, Eric. Plight Deepens for Black Men. New York Times, March 20, 2006. \3\ Ibid. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- Fortunately, there are solutions. In the mid-1990s it became clear to me that despite heroic efforts at saving poor children, success stories remained the exception. My kids in Harlem faced not just one problem that could be tackled by any one specific program, but encountered obstacles everywhere that they turned. Our piecemeal approach was of limited value against a perfect storm of problems and challenges. Vast numbers of kids were still failing out of high school leading to unemployment, antisocial behavior, drug abuse and prison. We need to work with these kids and their families and their communities, enveloping them in healthy and encouraging environments at every stage of life, starting from birth all the way up until they graduate from college. Through this process, we are beginning to see a new generation of successful adults, coming back to Harlem to not only bring economic prosperity back to their neighborhood, but also to be the parents of and role models for the next generation of youth growing up here. So instead of seeing our kids drop out of school and get involved in crime, we will see a whole new Harlem community prepared to thrive in the global economy, competing with children from both the United States and the world. This was our idea 10 years ago when we started the Harlem Children's Zone in Central Harlem, an area in which the child poverty rate is more than double the national average. We started with one building on West 119th Street and over the last decade have grown in three phases to a neighborhood encompassing 97 blocks. Last year, the HCZ Project served 14,230 clients including 8,163 youth and 6,067 adults. HCZ, Inc. served 21,279 clients including 10,462 youth and 10,817 adults. Ten years later, the Children's Zone model is working. A few examples of outcomes from our programs: Parents are reading more to their children. At The Baby College, a program for parents of children aged 0-3, our pre- and post-surveys of parents showed that 86 percent of parents who read to their children fewer than 5 times per week at pre-test increased the amount of time they spent reading to the children.\4\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \4\ HCZ Internal data. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- Four-year-olds are school-ready. After a year in our early childhood programs, 99.4 percent of our children attained a ``school readiness'' classification of average or above compared to 83 percent at pre-test on the Bracken Basic Concept Scale-Revised. Also, at pre- test, 35.4 percent of children (57 of 161) had a school readiness classification of advanced or very advanced; at post-test, 73.3 percent (118 of 161) were in these categories (based on national norms, one would expect 15.9 percent of students to be advanced or very advanced).\5\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \5\ HCZ Internal data. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- Poor minority youth are narrowing and closing the racial achievement gap. Harvard economist Roland Fryer and his colleague Will Dobbie evaluated the outcomes of Harlem Children's Zone Promise Academy Charter Schools and HCZ programs combined. They found that we increased the achievement of the poorest minority children. They wrote, ``Taken at face value, the effects in middle school are enough to close the black-white achievement gap in mathematics and reduce it by nearly half in English Language Arts. The effects in elementary school close the racial achievement gap in both subjects.'' \6\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \6\ Dobbie, W., & Fryer, R.G., Jr., (2009). Are high-quality schools enough to close the achievement gap? Evidence from a social experiment in Harlem. (NBER Working Paper No. 15473). Cambridge, MA: National Bureau of Economic Research. Teenagers are graduating from high school and going to college in historic numbers. Our College Success Office helps young people complete their college degrees, the ultimate outcome we seek as an agency. Currently, we have 490 students in college. Each year, we increase the size of our cohorts. For example, of those 490 college students, 181 just started college in the fall of 2009.\7\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \7\ HCZ Internal data. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- Parents are filing for their Earned Income Tax Credits and spending these resources back in the local economy. As of April 9, 2010, our free tax filing program had helped families file 4,530 returns worth just under $8 million. Of the total returns, 1,285 were eligible for the Earned Income Tax Credit.\8\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \8\ HCZ Internal data. The theory of change for the Harlem Children's Zone model is embodied in five key principles. When policymakers or other communities ask us how to create similar models, we recommend that they replicate our five principles, and not our specific programs. The five principles --------------------------------------------------------------------------- are: Serve an entire neighborhood comprehensively and at scale. Engaging an entire neighborhood helps to achieve three goals: it reaches children in numbers significant enough to affect the culture of a community; it transforms the physical and social environments that impact the children's development; and it creates programs at a scale large enough to meet the local need. Create a pipeline of high-quality programs that starts from birth and continues to serve children until they graduate from college. The continuum should include everything that children need to succeed: parenting education, early childhood programs, strong schools and after-school programs, health initiatives, social services; support before and during college. Programs must be: high quality, accessible and linked to one another so that they provide uninterrupted support for children's healthy growth, starting with prenatal programs for parents and finishing when young people graduate from college. The pipeline must be surrounded by additional programs that support families and the larger community such as family counseling, benefits counseling, legal services and assistance filing for taxes, especially the Earned Income Tax Credit. Build community among residents, institutions, and stakeholders, who help to create the environment necessary for children's healthy development. Evaluate program outcomes; create a feedback loop that cycles data back to management for use in improving and refining program offerings; and hold staff and partner organizations accountable. Cultivate a culture of success rooted in passion, accountability, leadership, and teamwork. One key component of the HCZ pipeline is strong schools. Charter public schools provide the opportunity for innovation, but I do not believe that they alone are the answer. Proven reforms must be incorporated into traditional public schools. And children in communities with poor outcomes need both high-quality, comprehensive supports and strong schools. HCZ charter schools have longer school days and a longer school year, merit pay and bonuses, data-driven decisionmaking, and school leaders with the ability to hire and fire employees. We believe that these reforms--coupled with our early childhood programs, out-of-school time programs for all ages, medical, dental, and mental health services,\9\ and healthy food, nutrition, and fitness opportunities-- generated the terrific improvements in our student achievement that Fryer and Dobbie found in their study. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \9\ The Children's Health Fund, Harlem Hospital and HCZ provide medical, dental and mental health services to our charter schools. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- While all of the supports are critical, we cannot expect that only adding supports to schools will transform academic outcomes. This approach must be paired with the type of structural reforms to education that the Obama administration has proposed in their blueprint for revising the ESEA and encouraged through Race to the Top. For example, we must have effective teachers and leaders alongside high- achieving after-school programs. The HCZ model is not cheap. We spend on average $5,000 per child each year to ensure childrens' success. Compare this to the costs of not spending this money: New Yorkers spend roughly $210,000 per youth on detention annually. A recent report from New York State Governor David Paterson's Task Force on Transforming Juvenile Justice highlighted the fact that three-quarters of those released from detention were arrested again within 3 years and 45 percent were reincarcerated.\10\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \10\ A Report of Governor David Paterson's Task Force on Transforming Juvenile Justice. Charting A New Course: A Blueprint for Transforming Juvenile Justice in New York State. (New York: 2009) --------------------------------------------------------------------------- In the 97 square blocks that constitute the HCZ project, the government will spend $42 million incarcerating some residents of our community.\11\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \11\ Cadora, E. and L. Kurgan. Columbia University Spatial Information and Design Lab Geographic Information Systems. (New York: Justice Mapping Center 2007) Poverty now costs the United States about 4 percent of its gross domestic product annually in lost production, decreased economic output, and increased social expenditures.\12\ Yet for far less money than the costs of poverty or what we are already spending on incarceration, we can educate our children, have them graduate from college, and bring them back to our communities ready to be successful, productive citizens. We think the choice is obvious. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \12\ Holzer, H., Schanzenbach, D.W., Duncan, G.J., Ludwig, L. The Economic Costs of Poverty: Subsequent Effects of Children Growing Up Poor. (Washington, DC: Center for American Progress, 2007) --------------------------------------------------------------------------- HCZ's achievements are not magic. They are a result of hard work and a comprehensive effort. Communities recognize that this is not easy, but they are already getting started. PolicyLink and HCZ recently held a conference focusing on the HCZ model and 1,400 people representing over 100 communities came. HCZ has a Practitioners Institute where other communities can come for several hours or several days to learn about our model. Since we launched our Institute in 2003, HCZ has welcomed over 120 communities from the United States and more from around the world. I applaud the President for taking the war on poverty to the next phase and I urge you to support Promise Neighborhoods and comprehensive supports for children. The Chairman. Thank you very much, Mr. Canada. I read your statement last night, and you grew up in Harlem, right? Mr. Canada. I grew up in the South Bronx in the 1950s when it was actually doing worse than Harlem was doing. I grew up in circumstances that my kids are growing up in today. The Chairman. One of the things I want to keep coming back to is this idea of how we get parents involved. We have heard that from other groups and other witnesses, but I hope you have some ideas for that--for strengthening parent, family and community engagement. This is just one aspect of focusing on the needs of the whole student. Ms. Pittman, please. STATEMENT OF KAREN PITTMAN, CO-FOUNDER, PRESIDENT, AND CEO, FORUM FOR YOUTH INVESTMENT, WASHINGTON, DC Ms. Pittman. Good afternoon, Mr. Chairman and members of the committee. Thank you very much for having us here today. I want to thank you for your leadership in bringing up this issue of the whole child because I think it is critical that we think not just about how we fix the education pipeline of connecting early childhood of K-12 to higher education, but also how we actually insulate that pipeline so that young people have all the services that Mr. Canada was just talking about. That really is what my organization, the Forum for Youth Investment, has been focused on, how we can really build those connections between schools, specifically the K-12 system, and that array of family, community, and public service supports that are outside of the school, to bring those together so that we have complete insulation from early childhood through young adulthood for young people. Nothing short of that will allow us to achieve our goals. I was very pleased to hear you talk about broadening student outcomes to include critical thinking and communication and problem-solving. Clearly, that is what higher education, business leaders, youth development leaders, and young people themselves tell us that they need to have. Our challenge is to actually figure out how to measure those, how to build those into class plans and educational plans, not just give lip service to them. I urge you, when we are thinking about the reauthorization, that everywhere the legislation calls for accountability that focuses on a specific narrow set of outcomes like literacy and math, not that those are unimportant, that we really with equal specificity define those other outcomes that young people want to have because we know that 4 out of 10 young people who show up with a high school diploma still aren't ready for work. The second thing that I would suggest that we emphasize is that we find a way to formalize and support the roles of families and community organizations. I think that their commitment and expertise in helping young people has earned them a seat at the planning table, not just a spot on the providers list. We have to get them into the schools and into this conversation early on, and we have to figure out how, as we are looking at funding, we have ways to adequately support their roles as partners. The last thing that I want to suggest that we do is focus not just on the content of student learning, as you mentioned, but on the context of student learning. We understand that the quality of the learning environment that a young person has is as important as the content, the quantity of what they are getting in terms of academic information. We really do know very much about how we can make quality happen inside schools and outside of schools. We can measure it. It is malleable, and it really does matter. It matters most important for those young people who are suffering not just from being in inadequate schools, but being in underfunded and under-resourced communities. Insulating this education pipeline is critically important for all of them. Thank you. [The prepared statement of Ms. Pittman follows:] Prepared Statement of Karen Pittman summary Good afternoon Mr. Chairman and members of the committee. I thank you for your leadership on educating the whole child--focusing not only on the traditional education pipeline that links early childhood programs to schools to higher education, but also on the families and community organizations that form the insulation that wraps around this pipeline. It is this dual focus on both the traditional educational pipeline and the layer of insulating family and community supports that will allow this legislation to truly be an Elementary and Secondary Education Act, as opposed to merely an Elementary and Secondary Schools Act. As the founder and president of an organization that helps communities across the country create Ready by 21 plans to educate the whole child, I urge the committee to consider taking three steps that would facilitate this ``whole community'' focus. broaden the definition of student outcomes Everywhere that the legislation calls for accountability for a specific narrow set of outcomes, such as literacy and math, I urge you to consider striking and replacing that language with a broader set of outcomes that incorporates the list of ``21st century skills'' that students, parents, business and higher education professionals all agree are necessary to be ready for college, work and life. We must ensure that young people are not only academically prepared, but also are prepared socially, physically, vocationally and civically. formalize and support the roles of families and community organizations ESEA is primarily about schools, teachers and principals. But to fully educate the whole child, it must also be about supporting families, community organizations, and other public services. I urge you to ensure that this broader set of institutions beyond schools is adequately funded, and that a broader set of professionals such as after-school providers and youth workers are invited along with teachers and principals to develop and participate in quality improvement plans and accountability systems. Their commitment and expertise should earn them a seat at the planning table, not just a spot on the providers list. focus on improving both the content and context of student learning Everywhere the legislation addresses the need for better-qualified teachers and administrators, I urge you to define and measure not only their capacity to deliver content, but also their capacity to create classrooms, schools and communities where young people feel physically and emotionally safe, feel challenged and supported by peers and adults, and feel that they have opportunities to apply what they know. The quality of the learning environment is as important as the qualifications of the instructors; this is true both in school and out. Improving the climate in schools and in after-school programs is as critical to advancing learning as is improving STEM courses. While a well-insulated pipeline will benefit all youth, it is particularly important for young people who are most in need: those entangled in the foster care and juvenile justice systems and young people facing poverty, unemployment, and dead ends. Not only are these young people more likely to be in low-performing schools, they are also more likely to be in struggling, under-resourced communities. Not only is their educational pipeline broken, but the layer of insulation is missing for them as well. For these young people in particular, we must ensure that ESEA supports the fully insulated educational pipeline. Thank you for your leadership and I look forward to your questions. ______ introduction Good afternoon Mr. Chairman and members of the committee. I thank you for your leadership on educating the whole child--focusing not only on the traditional education pipeline that links early childhood programs to schools, and schools to higher education, but also on the families and community organizations that insulate this pipeline. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \1\ From ``Bringing Precision to Your Passion: A Quick Overview of the Ready by 21 Approach to Data-Driven Decision-Making.'' Forum for Youth Investment, Washington DC. (2010)
The first layer of insulation is the family, supported by a range of formal and informal organizations; this should include community- based organizations that connect youth and families to critical supports and resources, as well as employers who provide students with opportunities to apply their learning, pursue their interests and build social capital. A second layer of insulation should ensure that young people have access to quality basic services that will allow them to successfully make their way through the pipeline--health care, transportation, housing, and financial supports. It is this dual focus on both the traditional educational pipeline and the layers of insulating family and community supports that will allow this legislation to truly be an Elementary and Secondary Education Act, as opposed to merely an Elementary and Secondary Schools Act.
Every parent knows that they cannot attend to only one aspect of their child's growth and ignore the others. Yet as policymakers, we too often forget what we know to be true as parents. We too often pick one area to focus on, such as test scores, and think we can succeed in this one area while ignoring the rest of our children's lives. We can't. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \2\ Ibid. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- I have spent my career working to reconcile the wisdom of parents-- who tell us that we need to attend to the whole child--with the intricacies of public policy--which tells us we must focus, crafting narrow policies that seek to influence only one type of development or behavior at a time. I have done so from an academic perspective, as the founder of the Center for Youth Development and Policy Research at the Academy for Educational Development; I have done so from an international philanthropy perspective as Senior Vice President of the International Youth Foundation; and I have done so from a Federal policy perspective, as the director of the President's Crime Prevention Council, chaired by Vice President Gore, which brought together the Secretaries of all major Federal departments to forge an overarching, interagency approach to educating the whole child. Currently, as co-founder and president of the Forum for Youth Investment, I oversee the development and promulgation of the Ready by 21 Strategy, which helps communities improve the odds that all youth will be ready for college, work and life. The Ready by 21 Strategy embodies a ``whole child'' or ``youth development'' approach to education. With effective local leaders and public structures like schools, community centers and libraries working together, communities can prepare a competitive workforce, strengthen social networks, support families and help all young people realize their potential. Using innovative strategic planning tools designed to maximize resources and developed by national experts, Ready by 21 mobilizes communities including State and local leaders to improve the odds for youth. Chief among these activities has been the formation of the Ready by 21 National Partnership, a coalition of prominent organizations such as United Way Worldwide, Corporate Voices for Working Families, and the American Association of School Administrators--whose members collectively reach more than 1 million children and youth across the country. Each of the Ready by 21 National Partners delivers the Ready by 21 Strategy to their respective constituencies, helping their affiliates use the Ready by 21 Strategy to strengthen their work. My remarks today, however, are my own and do not necessarily reflect the positions of any other Ready by 21 National Partner or the Ready by 21 National Partnership as a whole, which does not take official policy positions. recommendations As the founder and president of an organization that helps communities across the country create Ready by 21 action plans to educate the whole child, I urge the committee to consider taking four steps that would facilitate this ``whole community'' focus. Broaden the Definition of Student Outcomes Everywhere that the legislation calls for accountability for a specific narrow set of outcomes, such as literacy and math, I urge the committee to consider striking and replacing that language with a broader set of outcomes that incorporates ``21st century skills'' that students, parents, business and higher education professionals all agree are necessary to be ready for college, work and life. These skills have been well-documented by The College Board,\3\ the Search Institute,\4\ Harvard and MIT professors,\5\ the Partnership for 21st Century Skills,\6\ and the Gallup Organization,\7\ among others. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \3\ In addition to their detailed standards that align with expectations for entrance into core content college level courses in English Language Arts, Science and Mathematics, the College Board's standards include practical skills such as critical thinking, collaboration, problem-solving and technology literacy that the Board believes are critical to success in any content area. College Board College Readiness Standards. http://professionals.collegeboard.com/k- 12/standards. \4\ Two decades ago, the Search Institute brought adolescent development research into the school building with the release of their Developmental Assets Survey which demonstrated a powerful, direct relationship between the number of assets in a young person's life, their involvement in pro-social or anti-social behaviors, and their attitudes and performance in school. Search Developmental Assets list. http://www.search-institute.org/content/40-developmental- assets-adolescents-ages-12-18. \5\ In 1997, Murnane and Levy, the Harvard-MIT education-economics duo gained traction with the education and business leaders with the introduction of ``new basic skills.'' They identified three skill sets that young people need to succeed in the workplace--hard skills (e.g. mathematics, problem solving, and reading); soft skills (e.g. oral and written communications, team work) and information technology. Murnane and Levy, The New Basic Skills. http://www.infibeam.com/Books/info/ Richard-J-Murnane/Teaching-the-New-Basic-Skills/0684827395.html. \6\ In 2002, the Partnership for 21st Century Skills introduced skill sets that acknowledged the importance of: core subject matter content infused with 21st century themes; learning and innovation skills; information, media and technology skills, and life and career skills. The Partnership for 21st Century Skills. http:// www.21stcenturyskills.org/documents/P21_Framework.pdf. \7\ In 2008, the Gallup Organization introduced a student poll that measures students' hope, engagement and well-being. The Gallup Student Poll National Report. Dr. Shane Lopez. Gallup. 2009. http:// www.gallupstudentpoll.com/121019/Gallup-Student-Poll-National- Report.aspx. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- We know that by any of these broader measures of success, young people are not doing well. At best, only 3 in 10 seniors are college- ready.\8\ Only 4 in 10 high school graduates are work-ready.\9\ Up to a fourth of all students at 4-year colleges do not return for their second year of school.\10\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \8\ College readiness rates are rising slowly, but the problem is huge. Only 23 percent of high school graduates who took the ACT in 2009 scored as college-ready in all four core subjects. Earlier calculations, done by the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research based on calculations using graduation rates, high school transcripts and NAEP reading scores, found that one third of seniors ready, with white students almost twice as likely to be ready than African-American and Hispanic students. \9\ In 2007, Corporate Voices for Working Families, the Conference Board and other national business organizations surveyed over 400 employers across industries to document the skills they expect in entry level workers and assess their satisfaction with high school graduates. Employers report that 4 in 10 high school graduates are grossly deficient in the necessary skills, all of which, were important skills in the 20th century. \10\ Dropout rates are particularly high for African-American, Hispanic and first-generation college students--as many as 30 percent of students will take at least one remedial class during their college years, according to national studies. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- Employers, while acknowledging the need for ``21st century skills,'' are not equipped to train in these areas. According to a 2009 study by Corporate Voices for Working Families, 40 percent of the business respondents that offer some form of workforce readiness training have no on-the-job training to offer in these ``high need'' areas.\11\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \11\ Corporate Voices for Working Families, July 2009 http:// cvworkingfamilies.org/publication-toolkits/ill-prepared-us-workforce- exploring-challenges-employer-provided-workforce-read. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- We must ensure that young people are not only academically prepared, but also are prepared socially, physically, vocationally and civically. In general, the Blueprint for Reform: The Reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act uses a narrow set of outcomes when setting the criteria for receiving major funding streams, and uses broad definitions of outcomes when setting the criteria for small competitive grants. The opposite should be true. Formalize and Support the Roles of Families and Community Organizations ESEA is primarily about schools, teachers and principals. But to fully educate the whole child, it must also be about supporting families, community organizations and other public services (such as 21st Century Learning Centers, Supplemental Educational Services and Parent Information and Resource Centers). This requires educators to overcome what Daniel Domenech, executive director of the American Association of School Administrators, refers to as the ``edifice complex.'' I urge the committee to ensure that these important institutions beyond schools are adequately funded, and that a broader set of professionals such as after-school providers and youth workers are invited to work in conjunction with teachers and principals to develop and implement quality improvement plans and accountability systems. Their commitment and expertise should earn them a seat at the planning table, not just a spot on the providers list. At the committee's hearing on teachers and leaders, critical questions were raised about how to measure and support quality teachers and principals. There is a parallel conversation underway in the afterschool field, with assessments and capacity building tools such as the Youth Program Quality Intervention having passed rigorous research scrutiny on measuring and improving the quality of youth workers. I urge the committee to ensure that the reauthorization includes not only a plan to improve the quality of teachers and principals, but youth workers as well. Focus on Improving Both the Content and Context of Student Learning Everywhere the legislation addresses the need for better-qualified teachers and administrators, I urge the committee to define and measure not only their capacity to deliver content, but also their capacity to create classrooms, schools and communities where young people feel physically and emotionally safe, feel challenged and supported by peers and adults, and feel that they have opportunities to apply what they know. The quality of the learning environment is as important as the qualifications of the instructors--in school and out. Improving the climate in schools and afterschool programs is as critical to advancing learning as is improving STEM courses. The research is clear: the overall quality of the learning environment counts. When community after-school programs are sorted according to quality, the students in high-quality programs net significant gains in academic, social and emotional skills; the programs in low-quality programs show no gains. They might prevent pregnancy and violence, but they do not build skills. Quality is measurable; researchers can quantify school climate and classroom or afterschool programs quality. Quality is malleable; studies show that modest investments in quality improvement can net quick and lasting results. Quality matters if we are going to leverage the considerable investments already being made in school and community programs.\12\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \12\ See, for example, Durlak, J.A. and Weissberg, R.P. (2007). The Impact of After-School Programs that Promote Personal and Social Skills. Chicago, IL. Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning, and Smith, C., ET al. ``Continuous Quality Improvement in Afterschool Settings: Impact Findings from the Youth Program Quality Intervention Study,'' Spring 2010. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- Infuse Youth Voice A wise 17-year-old once said: ``If you had a problem in the Black community, and you brought in a group of White people to discuss how to solve it, almost nobody would take that panel seriously. In fact, there'd probably be a public outcry. It would be the same for women's issues or gay issues. But every day, in local arenas all the way to the White House, adults sit around and decide what problems youth have and what youth need, without ever consulting us.'' He was right. Most education reforms involve everyone else-- teachers, principals, parents, afterschool program providers, business leaders--but when does anyone bring young people to the table? Young people have unique perspectives that make them essential to any reform process and ESEA should look for ways to engage young people as core partners in shaping and implementing educational reforms. conclusion While a well-insulated education pipeline will benefit all youth, it is particularly important for young people most in need: those entangled in the foster care and juvenile justice systems and facing poverty, unemployment, and dead ends. Only half of all students of color graduate high school.\13\ Nearly 6 million youth (ages 16-24) are not in school and do not have a job.\14\ Researchers have identified the cohorts of youth who rarely make a successful transition to adulthood: 14-17-year-old adolescents that do not complete high school, are deeply involved in the juvenile justice system, are young, unmarried mothers, or are in a foster placement.\15\ Not only are these young people more likely to be in low-performing schools, they are also more likely to be in struggling, under-resourced communities. They are students who are least connected to the worlds of work or post- secondary education, are more likely to delay the pursuit of a post- secondary credential, more likely to spend college loans on remedial courses, more likely to leave college before completion. For these young people, ensuring that ESEA supports the fully insulated educational pipeline may be the only way we will get them through successfully. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \13\ Harvard Civil Rights Project, http:// www.civilrightsproject.harvard.edu/news/press releases/dropout05.php. \14\ Annie E. Casey Foundation, Kids Count Data Center, http:// datacenter.kidscount.org/. \15\ Urban Institute, http://www.urban.org/UploadedPDF/ 411283_alternative_education.pdf. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- In the world of education policy, we tend to get tunnel vision. We think of the school system as a complete educational experience in and of itself--it is not. Education systems alone simply cannot provide the comprehensive supports necessary to succeed by themselves. Equality of schools alone does not guarantee equal educational opportunity. Schools are merely one aspect of a child's education, much of which occurs beyond the school doors, beyond the school day, and beyond the realm of academics. Equal opportunity for success requires equality of the education of the whole child. This requires legislation that goes beyond academics to include a full range of outcomes, beyond schools to strengthen a full range of institutions, and beyond teachers and principals, to ensure quality child care workers and youth workers. In conclusion, I commend the committee's efforts to incorporate a Ready by 21 whole child approach to ESEA. Above and beyond this work, the committee may find that forging a truly overarching approach to children and youth requires strategies which transcend any one particular piece of legislation. In my work at the International Youth Foundation, I studied numerous countries that have forged an overarching child and youth strategy that brought increased alignment and efficiencies to the myriad policies focused on children and youth. In addition to the work on ESEA, I would be delighted to explore with the committees opportunities like the Federal Youth Coordination Act which calls for the creation of such an overarching national strategy for children and youth. Thank you for your leadership and I look forward to your questions. The Chairman. Very good. Thank you very much, Ms. Pittman. Mr. Schwarz. STATEMENT OF ERIC SCHWARZ, CO-FOUNDER AND CEO, CITIZEN SCHOOLS, BOSTON, MA Mr. Schwarz. Thank you, Mr. Chairman and members of the committee. I am with Citizen Schools, and for 15 years, we have been working with school districts, now 18 across the country--large communities, small communities, urban and rural--to dramatically expand the learning day, turning that 6- to 7-hour agrarian era schedule into a 9- to 10-hour learning day. And then filling up those extra hours with real-world learning opportunities, where kids get a chance to be producers and learn with experts from the community, as well as a skilled staff of second-shift educators. As one example, we worked last year across the country with 100 engineers from Google, who had a chance to work with our middle school kids in the afternoon hours to actually design video games--not just play video games, but design video games--learning algebraic concepts in the process. The main point I would like to make today that the whole child approach is not sort of just a touchy-feely approach to making kids feel good. It is an essential element of driving up proficiency, of driving up graduation rates, of driving up college readiness. I want to illustrate that, just telling a brief story about one school in Boston, which is our home community, the Edwards Middle School. Four years ago, the Edwards Middle School struggled. It was the lowest performing middle school in the city. Only 17 families the previous year had chosen to send their kids to that school. It had a typical 6 hour and 20 minute day. In a partnership with Citizen Schools, the school went from a 6 hour and 20 minute day to a 9 hour and 20 minute day. They became the first middle school in the city to have a football team and a dance program, but they also offered every kid through Citizen Schools four apprenticeships a year, academic coaching, an extra hour a day of academic coaching. That school went from worst to first in the last 3 years. It is now the highest-performing middle school in Boston. It has closed 80 percent of the achievement gap in science and English with State averages and created a reverse achievement gap in math. We think the Edwards is a leading example of what we can bring to the country, not just Citizen Schools, but other organizations on this panel partnering with schools to dramatically expand the learning day in a very high-quality way, focused on results. Thanks very much for the chance to speak with you today. [The prepared statement of Mr. Schwarz follows:] Prepared Statement of Eric Schwarz summary Chairman Harkin, Ranking Member Enzi, and members of the committee, I thank you for the opportunity to testify before the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions on the important issue of educating the whole child, and for highlighting this issue through the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). Citizen Schools is a national afterschool and expanded learning time model that works directly with schools and school districts across the country. Through our program, thousands of adult volunteers are mobilized and trained by a second shift of educators (including AmeriCorps teaching fellows) to help improve student achievement and close the achievement gap for low-income students. We run programs in seven States, including: North Carolina, New Mexico, California, Texas, New Jersey, New York, and my own State of Massachusetts. Citizen Schools serves nearly 4,500 students annually. At Citizen Schools, we partner closely with high-need schools to expand the learning day and bring more time, more relevant learning, and more caring adults into the lives or our students. Our programs include:
90-minute apprenticeships twice a week with professionals from the community who volunteer to give hands-on lessons to students on a wide variety of real world subjects. 60-90 minutes of daily supervised homework and study time. Weekly lessons targeting the specific educational needs of 6th, 7th, and 8th graders to build study-skills and help them navigate middle school and prepare for high school and beyond. Citizen Schools is not just a solution to help raise student achievement. Through an extended school day our program engaged citizens and communities in the larger effort to meet the needs of the whole child. We hope our success can be replicated across the country to afford all students the benefits of quality afterschool programming and expanded learning time. As such, Citizen Schools is a strong supporter of the Time for Innovation Matters in Education (TIME) Act (S. 1410) and we hope these policies will be reflected in the reauthorization of ESEA. At Citizen Schools we view the education of the whole child as not simply an add-on to a student's education, but as essential to their development into productive adults. Our success in afterschool settings has led us to believe that all children in a school deserve well- rounded supports and interventions in a re-imagined learning day. Edwards middle school in Massachusetts represents one clear example of how an expanded learning day helped turnaround one of the lowest performing middle schools in Boston. During a 3-year transformation effort the Edwards school restructured the school day to: Add 35 percent more learning time; Deeply engage outside community partners, including a strong leading partnership with Citizen Schools; Focus relentlessly on academic instruction; and Emphasize relevant, real-world learning activities and exposure to college and careers. As a result of this restructured school day and Citizen Schools' deep engagement, Edwards has achieved the following results: 8th grade math proficiency increased from 12 percent to 56 percent and ELA proficiency increased from 40 percent to 71 percent. 6th grade math proficiency increased from 15 percent to 37 percent and ELA proficiency increased from 27 percent to 49 percent. Today the Edwards is the highest achieving middle school in Boston and 6th grade enrollment has tripled from 77 to 247 students. I am happy to answer any questions members of the committee may have, and, again, I thank you for the opportunity to share the Citizen Schools story with you. ______ Chairman Harkin, Ranking Member Enzi, and members of the committee, I thank you for the opportunity to testify before the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions on the important issue of educating the whole child, and for highlighting this issue through the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). about citizen schools Citizen Schools is a national afterschool and expanded learning time model that works directly with schools and school districts across the country. Through our program, thousands of adult volunteers are mobilized and trained by a second shift of educators (including AmeriCorps teaching fellows) to help improve student achievement and close the achievement gap for low-income and minority students. We run programs in seven States, including: North Carolina, New Mexico, California, Texas, New Jersey, New York, and my own State of Massachusetts. Citizen Schools serves nearly 4,500 students annually. At Citizen Schools, we partner closely with high-need schools to expand the learning day and bring more time, more relevant learning, and more caring adults into the lives or our students. Citizen Schools is not just a solution to help raise student achievement. Through an extended school day our program engaged citizens and communities in the larger effort to meet the needs of the whole child. We hope our success can be replicated across the country to afford all students the benefits of quality afterschool programming and expanded learning time. As such, Citizen Schools is a strong supporter of the Time for Innovation Matters in Education (TIME) Act (S. 1410) and we hope these policies will be reflected in the reauthorization of ESEA. Citizen Schools programs directly complement classroom learning. Twice a week, students participate in apprenticeships led by professionals from the community who volunteer their time to give hands-on lessons in subjects ranging from business and finance, government and law, science technology, engineering and math, to arts and culture. At the end of each semester students present a portfolio of work developed through their apprenticeships in community sponsored WOW! events. Each year over 4,000 volunteer Citizen Teachers are engaged in our 37 sites. Citizen Schools' educators also supervise 60 to 90 minutes of daily homework and study time (4 days per week). Weekly lessons target the specific educational needs of 6th, 7th, and 8th graders and build the skills to help them navigate middle school and prepare for high school and beyond. For additional targeted support, Citizen Schools 8th Grade Academies provide intensive programming for 8th grade students. In these academies students make the connection between current learning and future opportunity. Citizen Schools helps these students analyze high school choices, visit college campuses, and take the necessary actions to make sure a college track is accessible and affordable. A long-term evaluation reports that Citizen Schools' 8th Grade Academy students are far more likely to graduate from high school in 4 years than the average for their district, despite starting middle school behind their peers. Our campuses are typically staffed by three sets of educators. First, the Campus Director works with school administrators and teachers to change school cultures, interface with the community, set the instructional vision for the campus, and lead our teams of educators. Second, our Team Leaders (many of whom are full-time Teaching Fellows, supported by AmeriCorps), work closely with targeted groups of students to raise student achievement in core subject areas. Lastly, our volunteer Citizen Teachers work to engage the students in learning through apprenticeships. We view our job as the education of the whole child, not simply as an add-on to a student's school day. This time is essential to the development of productive adults. Our success in afterschool settings has led us to see that all children in a school deserve these supports and interventions in a re-imagined learning day. It is our hope that Citizen Schools' success can serve as a model for other States and school districts looking to effectively expand the school day. the edwards middle school--an elt school turnaround success story Today, as one example of how Citizen Schools has helped turnaround a struggling school, I want to share with you the incredible story of how expanding learning time helped transform Boston's Edwards Middle School. Three and a half years ago, the Edwards--a school that serves 90 percent low-income students in a tough neighborhood--was failing. Its test scores placed the school at or near the bottom in rankings with other schools in the city. Edwards scored 30-40 percentage points below the State average for proficiency. The school wasn't attracting any new students. Only 77 6th graders enrolled at the Edwards 3 years ago, and just a handful of them had actually chosen to do so. By most accounts, the school was a year from closing its doors. Today the Edwards is the highest achieving middle school in Boston and 6th grade enrollment has tripled to 247 students. Through this transformation effort Edwards has doubled and tripled its students' proficiency rates, increased students' engagement in learning, and added more academic enrichment. The most dramatic gains have been achieved by 8th graders, who have participated in the expanded learning time model for 3 years. Eighth grade math proficiency increased from 12 percent to 56 percent and English Language Arts proficiency increased from 40 percent to 71 percent. Edwards' 8th graders are out-performing the State average in math proficiency--in a State that leads the Nation in academic achievement. Among 6th graders, math proficiency more than doubled--from 15 percent in 2006 to 37 percent in 2009--and English Language Arts proficiency jumped from 27 percent to 49 percent. This school has essentially reversed the achievement gap. How has the Edwards done it? The Edwards school has restructured the school day to: Add 35 percent more learning time; Deeply engage outside community partners, including a strong leading partnership with Citizen Schools; Focus relentlessly on academic instruction; and Emphasize relevant, real-world learning activities and exposure to college and careers. As the Nation struggles to turn around low-performing schools-- particularly middle schools where early indicators show the first signs of the dropout crisis--Edwards demonstrates the importance of effectively using additional time. To meet the needs of the whole child and keep each student on the achievement track more time is a key variable. Three years ago the Edwards undertook an intensive redesign process to implement an expanded learning time (ELT) model. It made some key decisions that distinguished it from most other Expanded Learning Time schools. The Edwards' faculty and staff: Added a full 3 hours of extra learning time Monday through Thursday and made Friday a shorter day to allow for joint professional development of teachers and outside partners. The Edwards added approximately 380 hours of learning, significantly above the State's requirement of 300 additional hours for ELT schools; Forged a partnership with Citizen Schools and empowered our staff and volunteer Citizen Teachers to run all extra learning time for all 6th graders. Citizen Schools and other community partners worked to expand the menu of academic and enrichment activities for 7th and 8th graders; Organized joint professional development and shared curriculum planning for teachers and outside partners, and used Citizen Schools' staff as a pipeline to fill administrative and faculty positions and to serve as substitute teachers; Focused on math reinforcement through hands-on lessons for 1 extra hour each day across all grades. These lessons were led by Citizen Schools' young educators (generally recent college graduates) and by school-day teachers; Focused on relevant, fun learning activities and exposure to careers and colleges through apprenticeships taught by professionals from the community (trained and coached by Citizen Schools' staff). Older students also had access to cheerleading, dance, music, and athletic programs, including the city's only middle school football team; and Enrolled a portion of the 8th grade class in an 8th Grade Academy, led by Citizen Schools. These students visited 10 college campuses while also learning about high school options and coaching their classmates on the best pathways to high school success and college and career readiness. expanded learning time done well Expanded learning time holds great promise for American education. The transformation of the Edwards School demonstrates that ELT--if well designed and well implemented--can advance achievement and expand opportunity for low-income students. Citizen Schools is eager to work with school and district partners who have an appetite for change and who are ready to meet the substantial challenges of implementing ELT well. As Congress considers expanded learning time in the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, high- quality ELT should include: 1. A substantial increase (at least 30 percent more) in total learning time, and enroll all, or a large portion (such as a whole grade level), of a school in the ELT schedule. 2. Engaging talented outside educators and strong community/ nonprofit partners to complement traditional instruction and allow these providers to take lead responsibility for instruction for large chunks of the longer learning day. School principals should have the flexibility to form instructional teams comprising current teachers and nonprofit partners to meet the needs of students and improvement engagement and results. 3. Including small-group academic coaching that is aligned with and supports the core academic subjects. Ideally, ELT programs will add a minimum of 60 minutes of small-group academic instruction per day at least 4 days per week. 4. Offering relevant enrichment activities with embedded academic exercises to engage the interest of students, capitalizing on the special opportunities that an expanded schedule allows. Ideally, ELT programs will add a minimum of 90 minutes of enrichment per day at least 4 days per week to allow for deep learning and enrichment experiences such as hands-on apprenticeships connected to career opportunities, theater, arts and music activities, and participation on sports teams. 5. Taking special note of students who are transitioning from elementary to middle school or from middle school to high school, and support these transitions through ELT activities. our afterschool and elt models replicate success across the nation While today I focused on our work at Edwards middle school in Massachusetts, we have seen similar student achievement results in our other sites across the country. Throughout all of our program sites, our students grades have improved, our partnerships with schools and districts have grown, we have engaged thousands of families on a regular basis to integrate them more fully into the school community, and we have mobilized thousands of professionals to bring the science, the law, engineering, the arts, finance, and many other disciplines into the classroom. Our goal is always to bring learning alive for our students. Our alumni are succeeding in and graduating from high school, attending college, and entering the world with knowledge, skills, and self confidence. We appreciate the committee's leadership on these important issues and look forward to working with you to expand quality afterschool and expanded learning time opportunities for students as ESEA reauthorization moves forward. I am happy to answer any questions members of the committee may have, and, again, I thank you for the opportunity to share the Citizen Schools story with you. APPENDICES
The Chairman. Thank you very much, Mr. Schwarz. I have to ask you more about that 9- to 10-hour learning day. Do the students get physical exercise and nutrition and all that kind of stuff? We will get further into that during the discussion. Dr. Sugai. STATEMENT OF GEORGE SUGAI, Ph.D., PROFESSOR AND CAROLE J. NEAG ENDOWED CHAIR, POSITIVE BEHAVIOR INTERVENTIONS AND SUPPORTS, STORRS, CT Dr. Sugai. Good morning, Mr. Chairman and members of the committee. Thank you very much for this opportunity to share with you a little bit of thoughts about the whole child, the whole student. I am also co-director of the National Center on Positive Behavioral Supports, which is funded by the Office of Special Ed Programs and the Department of Education. We have been really fortunate to be able to contact and touch about 11,000 schools across the country. Some from Minnesota and Colorado and Georgia, as well as from your own State of Iowa. What we have learned from that particular experience over the last 13 years is a couple of points I would like to make, and that reinforces what you said about the whole student and also all students as part of that. We have learned that it is very important to think about the interaction between effective instruction and positive behavioral supports for all kids. The good thing about that is, we know much about the technology that is needed to promote those positive social outcomes. I think one of the challenges we have, however, is how to ensure the infrastructure that people can implement those practices with high quality as well as durability. Because we can start something, but if it doesn't last past the 90-day warrantee, we are in trouble with respect to the impact on kids. Some things we have learned at the center that have been helpful to us thinking about high quality and durability are some points I want to make about policy, and that is I think we need to be thinking about how we use flexible funding across all the different initiatives that are represented here to support all stakeholders, meaning students, families, communities, mental health, and so forth. We also, I think, need to think about data systems that allow us to measure really important educational outcomes not only for kids, but also for the schools that provide those services. Another thing I want to mention is that this whole notion about professional development, and what we are learning from there is that it needs to be a deliberate effort. It needs to be integrated. Our one-shot in-service models have not been very successful in changing how schools practice, and we are really thinking about what does that need to look like in the context of the whole student? The last piece I wanted to mention about the policy side is that we probably need to continue this notion of engaging in research and documents, what the impact of our work is and whether or not it is working. I would like to finish with four questions that we always like to use as a way to judge what we do. The first question is, do the students really benefit from our activities? If we can't answer that question, we really need to make a decision about what we are investing in. The second part that we need to ask is whether or not we are using the most effective practices to achieve those outcomes. I am not sure we have that link yet in a formalized way. Third question is are we creating the systematic supports needed to enable schools, families, and communities to work together to implement those practices, like I said before, with durability. And finally, the last question is are we collecting the data, as was mentioned earlier, that allows us to answer the previous three questions? I think if we do all those four or answer those four questions well, we should be able to address the needs of the whole student and, as I like to argue as a special educator, all students. I would be happy to entertain more questions around that at a later time. Thank you. [The prepared statement of Dr. Sugai follows:] Prepared Statement of George Sugai, Ph.D. Purpose Statement. The purpose of this testimony is to endorse efforts within the ESEA Reauthorization that: 1. Authorize flexible education funding (e.g., title I) for local education agencies to improve school-wide climate with prevention-based approaches, like school-wide positive behavior support (SWPBS).\1\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \1\ SWPBS is a comprehensive framework for enhancing implementation of evidence-based practices and interventions to achieve meaningful academic and behavioral outcomes for all students. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- 2. Increase school-based mental health funding to encourage (a) collaboration with community mental health agencies and (b) implementation of prevention-based approaches, like SWPBS. 3. Extend scope and funding for comprehensive implementation coordination and technical assistance to States and schools (e.g., OSEP National Center on Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports). 4. Establish policy for more positive and preventive approaches to substantially decrease the use of highly aversive procedures, like restraint and seclusion. 5. Give priority to school practices and systems that are data- driven, evidence-based, outcome-oriented, and supported to be implemented with high integrity. 6. Collect and report at least annually school-level data on discipline, disaggregated by ESEA subgroups (race, gender, special education, SES, English learner status) to guide local decisionmaking regarding State and district technical assistance and the adoption of prevention-based approaches when high rates and/or disparities are noted. 7. Increase family involvement in and contributions to establishing effective teaching and learning environments for all students. 8. Promote effective and relevant professional development, technical assistance, and implementation approaches that give priority to (a) evidence-based practices, (b) data-based decisionmaking and evaluation, (c) measurable and meaningful outcomes, (d) continuous training and coaching, (e) sustained and accurate local implementation, (f) continuous improvement and regeneration, and (g) culturally and contextually appropriate practices and implementation. Rationale. These endorsements are important because: 1. Meeting the needs of the ``whole student'' requires consideration of the academic and social behavioral success of all children and youth. 2. Academic and social behavioral successes are inextricably intertwined. 3. Prevention-based (teach, prompt, monitor, acknowledge) approaches are more effective and durable than reactive ``get-tough'' (punishment) methods. 4. Individual student success is linked to classroom and school- wide environments that are positive, preventive, predictable, engaging, respectful, responsible, and safe. 5. Sustained, effective, and comprehensive implementation capacity (e.g., training, coaching, evaluation, expertise, coordination) is needed to maximize the impact of acquired knowledge and skills. 6. Long-term systemic supports are needed at the Federal, State, and local levels to achieve meaningful improvements at the classroom and individual student levels. 7. General and special education should be operating as ``one-for- all'' rather than as competing priorities and mandates so the (a) needs of the whole student are addressed, (b) all students can be successful, and (c) students with disabilities can receive specially designed instruction and behavior supports. 8. More competent, effective, and relevant teaching and learning environments are associated with classroom and school climates that are more culturally and contextually appropriate for all students, families, and communities. Outcomes. If we give priority to important student outcomes, evidence-based practices, data-based decisionmaking, and efficient implementation systems, we should expect: 1. Improved student attendance, engagement, and completion. 2. Improved resource utilization for accurate, sustained, and systemic implementation of evidence-based practices and systems. 3. Increased teacher instructional time and student academic engagement and opportunities to learn. 4. More respectful, responsible, and safe student behavior at the individual student, classroom, and school-wide levels. 5. Decreased rates of problem behavior and use of reactive behavior management practices (e.g., in-school detention and out-of-school suspensions). 6. Improved implementation of academic and social behavior supports for students who have characteristics that might place them at high risk for academic or social behavior failure. 7. Improved academic achievement in basic, core, and specialized content areas. 8. Enhanced family and community satisfaction and relations. The Chairman. Thank you, Dr. Sugai. Ms. Greene. STATEMENT OF JAMIE GREENE, PRESIDENT, RHODE ISLAND SCHOOL LIBRARY ASSOCIATION, WARREN, RI Ms. Greene. Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, thank you for the opportunity to talk about our Nation's school libraries. Mr. Chairman, thank you for introducing the Keep Our Educators Working Act. I hope this allows school librarians to continue to teach their students. In fact, I have received my layoff notice. Let me also say a special thank you to Senator Jack Reed. I ask that my full remarks be made part of the record. School libraries serve as a hub for all literacies and learning in our Nation's schools. Research indicates a well- funded and fully staffed school library with a State-licensed school librarian is crucial to preparing graduates for college, career, and life, educating the whole student to read, succeed, and achieve in any 21st century school. For countless students, school libraries are the only place where they have access to high-quality, multi perspective information and technology. School librarians teach the skills of how to draw conclusions or create new knowledge and share that knowledge with others. Yet with increasing frequency, we seem to be left behind in funding and policy debates at the national, State, and local levels. I asked my students to be the voice of students throughout the country. Pearse Adams had this to say. ``The library is a place of not only books, but opportunities. The library contains not only shelves, but imagination. The library is a battery with many circuits connected to it. These circuits are people, places, or things in a town. The library powers these circuits and keeps the town, city, or even country running. Without libraries, our lives would be a puzzle with pieces missing, a riddle unsolved.'' Here are four concrete steps to take now. First, amend title I and the Race to the Top fund to establish a State goal of having a school library staffed by a State-licensed school librarian in each public school. Second, maintain dedicated funding for the Improving Literacy through School Libraries program. Third, allow State and local professional development funds to be used for recruiting and training school librarians. Fourth, include libraries in any legislation you consider for education, training, or jobs. Thank you. And remember, to educate the whole student, children need school libraries and licensed school librarians. [The prepared statement of Ms. Greene follows:] Prepared Statement of Jamie Greene summary School libraries serve as a hub for all literacies and learning in our Nation's schools. Research proves a well-funded and fully staffed school library with a State-licensed school librarian is crucial to preparing graduates for college, career and life, educating the ``whole student'' to read, succeed and achieve in any 21st century school. To thrive in our global society, students need to be effective users of ideas and information. They must be able to access high- quality, multi-perspective information, make sense of it, draw conclusions or create new knowledge, and share their knowledge with others. These are precisely the learning opportunities provided by licensed school librarians. For countless students, school libraries are the only place where they have access to quality books, electronic resources, to the Internet, and to technology programs. School librarians provide the only instruction in multiple literacies, including digital, visual, textual and technological. School librarians teach the skills and foster the attitudes and responsibilities learners need for critical and creative thinking, communication and problem solving. Yet, with increasing frequency, we seem to be ``left behind'' in funding and policy debates at the national, State, and local levels. Our school libraries are unable to update their collections or provide expanded access to resources because many licensed school librarians have been laid off and some schools have even closed their libraries. Sadly, the schools in economically disadvantaged neighborhoods are the most affected. Simply put, children need equal access to school libraries, and they need State-licensed librarians. America's school librarians understand these are tough economic times, but we believe there are four concrete steps you can take now to ensure that all students have access to school library programs: 1. First, amend title I and the Race to the Top fund to establish a State goal of having a school library staffed by a State-licensed school librarian in each public school. 2. Second, maintain dedicated funding for the Improving Literacy Through School Libraries program. 3. Third, allow State and local professional development funds to be used for recruiting and training school librarians who are essential personnel to improve student academic achievement. 4. Finally, please include libraries in any legislation you consider dealing with education, training, or jobs. ______ Mr. Chairman and members of the committee--thank you for the opportunity to tell you about the wonderful things happening in our Nation's school libraries. Let me also say a special thank you to Senator Jack Reed, our State's senior Senator and, may I also add, the favorite Senator of librarians across the Nation. I ask that my full remarks be made part of the record. Since I only have a short time, I'd like to get right to the point. School libraries serve as a hub for all literacies and learning in our Nation's schools. Research proves a well-funded and fully staffed school library with a State-licensed school librarian is crucial to preparing graduates for college, career and life, educating the ``whole student'' to read, succeed and achieve in any 21st century school. Working collaboratively to provide cost-effective, data-driven educational solutions, Rhode Island Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education highlights the vital role of school librarians in the following quote: ``Tomorrow's graduates must be able to solve problems, think for themselves, learn independently, and find accurate and reliable information from among the millions of sources available to them at the click of a mouse. Students learn these valuable skills in school libraries and through effective library-media programs. We must continue to support these programs, which play a vital role in education today.'' To thrive in our global society, students need to be effective users of ideas and information. They must be able to access high- quality, multi-perspective information, make sense of it, draw conclusions or create new knowledge, and share their knowledge with others. These are precisely the learning opportunities provided by licensed school librarians. Accordingly, it should come as no surprise that our school libraries are being used now more than ever. In 2009, the American Association of School Librarians found that for each licensed school librarian, the average number of individual student visits per week to the school library was over 300 and groups visited nearly 30 times each week. For countless students, school libraries are the only place where they have access to quality books, electronic resources, to the Internet, and to technology programs. School librarians provide the only instruction in multiple literacies, including digital, visual, textual and technological. School librarians teach the skills and foster the attitudes and responsibilities learners need for critical and creative thinking, communication and problem solving. The simple fact is that children in schools need libraries, both school and public, and they need licensed librarians to provide access and instruction to evaluate information and resources. A Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation study, ``Primary Sources: America's Teachers on America's Schools'' released in 2010, reported that 83 percent of K-12 teachers say the No. 1 place students get books for their independent reading is at the school library. To most Americans, the importance of school libraries seems to be something that almost goes without saying. In fact, I have yet to come across anyone, anywhere who actually opposes school libraries--or for that matter, libraries of any type. In a January 2009 telephone survey by KRC Research, 97 percent of Americans agree school library programs are an essential part of the education experience because they provide resources to students and teachers. Ninety-two percent agreed that school libraries are a good value for their tax dollar. Yet, with increasing frequency, we seem to be ``left behind'' in funding and policy debates at the national, State, and local levels. Our school libraries are unable to update their collections or provide expanded access to resources because many licensed school librarians have been laid off and some schools have even closed their libraries. Sadly, the schools in economically disadvantaged neighborhoods are the most affected. The NCES School and Staffing Survey Report shows that the number of full-time licensed school librarians significantly decreased since 2003. The American Association of School Administrators is reporting that 10 percent of Administrators had to cut school librarians in 2009- 2010, and that an additional 19 percent would be cutting librarians in 2010-2011. For example, Iowa has lost 23 school librarian positions in this past year alone. We find ourselves in this predicament not because of outright opposition, but more as a result of pre-occupation with other, perceived to be more pressing, issues. But the fact remains that all students need equal access to the books, technology and instruction available through well-funded, fully staffed school libraries. To help ensure this equal access, libraries must be specifically included in new education programs such as the Race to the Top, and critical, dedicated funding must be maintained in programs like Improving Literacy Through School Libraries. I think researcher Douglas Achterman put it best in a 2008 California study on school libraries, ``It is more than ironic that school districts are willing to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on reading programs and staff development which have had limited success in boosting test scores, but are unwilling to invest in school library programs that show such direct correlations to student success.'' Simply put, children need equal access to school libraries, and they need State-licensed librarians. I asked my students to be the voice of students throughout the country. One of my fifth grade students, Pearse Adams had this to say about why school libraries are essential: ``The library is a place of not only books, but opportunities. The library contains not only shelves, but imagination. Many researchers use books from a library to create wonderful writings, speeches or programs. Without the libraries in our Nation, there would be no Harry Potter, there would be no adventure, no genre, no splash of color in the world of humans. Without librarians that dedicate their precious time, there would be no guidance to help you find a good book. Libraries can serve as a place for books, or much more! The library is a battery with many circuits connected to it. These circuits are people, places or things in a town. The library powers these circuits and keeps the town, city, or even country running. The library is like a support pole, without it the town will fall over. The library keeps the town steady, running and peaceful. Without libraries our lives would be a puzzle with pieces missing, a riddle unsolved.'' America's school librarians understand these are tough economic times, but we believe there are four concrete steps you can take now to ensure that all students have access to school library programs: 1. First, amend title I and the Race to the Top fund to establish a State goal of having a school library staffed by a State-licensed school librarian in each public school. To make sure this happens, ensure that this goal is validated through accountability performance measures that include baseline data and annual reporting on progress in each of these programs. 2. Second, maintain dedicated funding for the Improving Literacy Through School Libraries program. This program works (but in 2009, there were 450 qualified applications and only enough funding for 57 grants). It helps to improve student learning by providing up-to-date school library materials; well-equipped, technologically advanced school library media centers; and well-trained, certified school librarians to provide access and instruction to these resources. 3. Third, allow State and local professional development funds to be used for recruiting and training school librarians who are essential personnel to improve student academic achievement. 4. Finally, please include libraries in any legislation you consider dealing with education, training, or jobs. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, for inviting me here today. And remember: To ensure that all children read, succeed and achieve, and to educate the ``whole student,'' children need school libraries and licensed school librarians. The Chairman. Thank you very much, Ms. Greene. Now we will hear from Ms. Struck from the Price Lab. STATEMENT OF CLARE STRUCK, ELEMENTARY COUNSELOR, PRICE LAB SCHOOL, CEDAR FALLS, IA Ms. Struck. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and members of the committee, for this opportunity to speak on behalf of the students and staff of Price Laboratory School, as well as the 170,000 educational leaders from ASCD. Pupil services providers are vital to fostering and sustaining a school culture that embraces the five tenets of the ASCD Whole Child Initiative--healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged. The next ESEA reauthorization must include a more student- centered, educator-supporting, instruction-driven model focused on teaching, learning, and meeting the needs of all students, both in and out of school. PLS embraces this whole child model and has seen tremendous results. As an elementary school counselor, I provide pupil services in four main areas--curriculum, individual student planning, responsive services, and system support. Examples of my responsibilities include developing and implementing a standards-base guidance curriculum, consulting with students' families and teachers to develop and implement differentiated learning plans, responding to the immediate needs of students through counseling, and referrals to appropriate agencies, helping to integrate school counseling in the school improvement process using the Iowa school counseling framework that is based upon the ASCA comprehensive model. The two biggest barriers to providing pupil services are the student-to-counselor ratio and the assignment of noncounseling duties. Nationally, the ratio is 460 to 1 and up to 1,000 to 1 in the rural and high-poverty areas. These numbers are far too high to adequately support students. The other impediment is the performance of noncounseling duties, such as substitute teaching, discipline, and filling in for principals when they are away. We appreciate all of your work, Chairman Harkin, on behalf of the whole child. We at Price Lab are so proud of you for being the first recipient of the Whole Child Leadership Award in 2006 and want to thank you for being such a champion for the interests of children not just in Iowa, but across the Nation. Pupil services providers can be the constant force in developing and maintaining a positive school climate and a culture of caring where all students feel connected and safe and able to learn, which facilitates greater student achievement and academic proficiency. Indeed, children who are hurting, hungry, scared, or disengaged cannot learn to the best of their abilities. We must recognize and address these needs if we are to have any hope of educating all students to academic proficiency. I hope you, your colleagues, and other national leaders will join with me and educators across the country to ensure that each child is healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged. Thank you. [The prepared statement of Ms. Struck follows:] Prepared Statement of Clare Struck Chairman Harkin, Ranking Member Enzi, and members of the committee, my name is Clare Struck and I am an elementary school counselor at the Malcolm Price Laboratory School in Cedar Falls, IA. Thank you for this opportunity to speak on behalf of the students and staff of the Price Laboratory School (PLS) as well as the 170,000 educational leaders who are members of ASCD. I appear before you today as a mother, an educator, and a strong advocate committed to meeting the needs of the whole child. It has been my life's work and the work of the Price Laboratory School to provide all of our children--from 6 weeks of age through high school--with a whole child education; one that ensures that they are healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged. Before I begin, I want to acknowledge Chairman Harkin's work on behalf of the whole child. Throughout the course of your career in the House and Senate, you have been a staunch champion on issues affecting our children--everything from the foods they eat to the quality of the education they receive and the school buildings in which they learn. We at Price Lab were proud of your being chosen as the first recipient of the Whole Child Leadership Award in 2006. In accepting the award, you said, ``Educators, parents, and children rely on Congress to fund education initiatives that will help our kids reach their full potential. With help from organizations like ASCD, I am confident we can persuade the Senate to meet this responsibility. After all, there is no better investment we can make than developing the minds of our children.'' Thank you, Chairman Harkin, for your efforts on behalf of the whole child, not just in Iowa but across the Nation. I am also pleased to note that Price Laboratory School was awarded the first ever Vision in Action: The ASCD Whole Child Award in March 2010 because of our efforts aimed at ensuring that all of our preK-12 students are healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged. As Congress begins work on the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), it is critical that the current overemphasis on standardized tests, punitive accountability systems, and rigid mandates be replaced by a more student-centered, educator- supporting, instruction-driven model focused on teaching and learning and meeting the needs of all students, both in and out of school. We at PLS have embraced this model of providing a whole child education to all our children and have seen tremendous results. The Price Lab School is a preK-12 public school that is part of the College of Education at the University of Northern Iowa (UNI). PLS is home to 369 students, 53 faculty, and seven support personnel. The population is 71.5 percent Caucasian, 18 percent African-American, 6 percent Asian American, 4 percent Hispanic American, and .5 percent Native American. Students with disabilities make up 7 percent of our population. Eighteen percent of our students qualify for free or reduced lunch prices. The majority of PLS students reside in Cedar Falls and 32 percent of our students attend through the State's open enrollment policy. PLS is accredited by the North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement (NCA CASI) by meeting the high NCA standards for academic programs, learning materials, student needs, student interests, staffing, and facilities. PLS also works closely with the Iowa Department of Education to ensure that the PLS students and the UNI teacher education students experience the academic and character education standards required or recommended for the schools of Iowa. In May 2009, the Price Laboratory School was designated Iowa's first statewide Research & Development (R&D) School. As such, PLS creates innovative curriculum and evaluates promising instructional practices to support Iowa's 472,000 K-12 students and 34,600 full-time K-12 teachers. the whole child initiative In 2006, ASCD convened the Commission on the Whole Child--a group composed of leading thinkers, researchers, and practitioners. It was charged with the redefining of a successful learner from one whose achievement is measured solely by academic tests to one who is knowledgeable, emotionally and physically healthy, civically inspired, engaged in the arts, prepared for work and economic self-sufficiency, and ready for the world beyond formal schooling. The Commission issued a call to action for educators, parents, businesses, health and social service providers, arts professionals, recreation leaders, and policymakers to forge a new compact with our children to ensure their whole and healthy development--a compact that strives to develop the whole child. A whole child is intellectually active; physically, verbally, socially, and academically competent; empathetic, kind, caring, and fair; creative and curious; disciplined, self-directed, and goal- oriented; free; a critical thinker; confident; cared for; and valued. This is the goal of a whole child education. The Whole Child Initiative is built upon five basic tenets: 1. Each student enters school healthy and learns about and practices a healthy lifestyle. 2. Each student learns in an intellectually challenging environment that is physically and emotionally safe for students and adults. 3. Each student is actively engaged in learning and is connected to the school and broader community. 4. Each student has access to personalized learning and is supported by qualified, caring adults. 5. Each graduate is challenged academically and prepared for success in college or further study and for employment in a global environment. Over the course of the last year, whole child advocates across the country have been working to spread the word about the need to provide each child with a whole child education. Several States have petitioned their State boards of education and State legislatures to adopt a resolution acknowledging the need to educate the whole child. I am excited to report that just this month, Senator Kay Hagan introduced S. Res. 478 designating March as National Whole Child Month and recognizing that making sure all children are healthy, safe, engaged, supported and challenged should be a national priority. We thank Senator Hagan for her efforts and ask that all of the members of this committee join us in our efforts to make the passage of this whole child resolution a reality. why focus on the whole child? PLS has a longstanding tradition of focusing on the whole child, much of it delivered through the nuances of our school's climate and culture. Faculty, staff, students, and families alike foster an environment that promotes intellectual challenge, high standards of character, and the development of the whole child. This culture of support has been developed over many years, but can be traced to some specific catalysts. Our school improvement process, NCA CASI, has a significant history of focusing not only on our students' academic goals but also on whole child goals. As part of this process, one of the areas our school chose to focus on in 1999-2000 was school climate. This decision was based upon a wide assortment of student, parent, and staff data. Using the data analysis from the 1999 and 2002 National Study of School Evaluation Teacher Opinion Surveys, the 1999 and 2002 NCA Student Surveys (Grades 5-12), the 1999 and 2002 NCA Parent Surveys (Grades preK-12), and our ongoing school-wide NCA meetings, the following specific goal was determined. 2004 School Climate Goal: All members of the Price Laboratory School will demonstrate respectful, positive, and ethical behaviors in both verbal and nonverbal communication for the purpose of creating a positive school climate and effective school-wide discipline policies. Specific school-wide interventions in response to this goal were: the emphasis on respect in the Elementary Citizenship program, the PreK-5 ``Be a Buddy, Not a Bully!'' guidance curriculum and program, the Middle School Life Skills Class, the Notice of Concern and Notice of Success Forms for middle school and high school, the Character and Leadership Attribute Rating form for high school, and the development and implementation of the high school Extracurricular Involvement Plan. The well-known Elementary Citizenship Program grew out of a shared concern at the elementary level more than 15 years ago. In 1993, the elementary staff and administration expressed concerns about the students not transferring the level of respect they demonstrated in the classrooms to the more unstructured areas of recess, lunchtime, hallways, and before and afterschool. We collectively decided to move forward with a proactive response to instill the core tenets of citizenship. We taught students how to advocate for their own rights and the rights of others. Children are overtly charged with protecting our learning environment to ensure we always have a caring community. This program continues to transform in response to the current character education needs of our elementary students based upon input from students, parents, and faculty. For example, when PLS became a First Amendment School in 2005, we used the structure of the Elementary Citizenship Program to teach and reinforce the five freedoms of the First Amendment to all of our PreK-5 students. Our monthly citizenship themes and assemblies focused on what these five freedoms look like at our school. The high school advisory program was developed in response to changing student demographics at PLS. Over the past 15 years, we have seen an increasing number of parents choose to enroll their children at Price Lab School as a ``last resort.'' Some students enroll at PLS after being kicked out of other schools. Parents of children who have struggled academically and socially in other school settings choose PLS, hoping we would be able to meet their children wherever they were and move forward. This influx of ``at-risk'' students forced us to rethink what we do and how we do it. We engaged in a process of determining our core beliefs, some of which include: believing every child can be ready for work, life and college; embodying a relentlessness that does not allow us to write off any child; and developing a professional efficacy that means we believe we have greater power than any external factor to influence student achievement and personal development. We worked diligently to put these beliefs into action. We assigned our highest-need students to our strongest student advisors. We fostered a relationship between students and advisors through which our teachers act as ``in-school parents'' who not only advocate for the best interest of the student, but also demand the best from them. Putting these core beliefs into practice also sparked changes in classrooms. PLS courses are grounded in a student-centered and inquiry- based curriculum where students are engaged in interactive and project- based learning. We believe that every child is a full and rightful member of our learning community. Faculty members are well-seasoned in developing and delivering differentiated learning to meet the needs of each and every student. In 2005, Dr. Jeffrey Cornett, the former Dean of the College of Education at UNI, taught us another value we strive to live out every day--``Care & Excellence.'' He challenged us to be ``two for two.'' He explained that a lot of teachers care about kids and a lot of them have mastery of their teaching content, but many teachers are only one for two. The most effective teachers are two for two. Care & Excellence reinforces that if we don't deeply care about every child--even those children whose behavior makes them tough to love--then we cannot give them the first-class education they all deserve. Teaching is as much listening to the tear-stained story of a hurting child as it is engaging him or her in rigorous academic experiences. It is both cheering the basketball team on to a State championship and promoting deep conceptual and procedural knowledge of necessary 21st century skills and concepts. high standards and expectations for all students The learning environment at PLS has established a tradition of students believing in themselves and setting their aspirations high. Over 90 percent of our graduates go on to a post-secondary program of study. Our student-centered curriculum encourages all students to be engaged learners. As a result we have very few issues with absenteeism and dropouts are rare anomalies. Our desire to promote a community of learners is not only an expectation for students, but is mirrored in our professional development (PD) as well. PLS and ASCD recognize that the two most important school-based factors affecting student achievement are the effectiveness of the classroom teacher and the effectiveness of the school principal. In order to address the evolving needs of our students, schools and districts must build the capacity to support all educators in gaining and sustaining the professional knowledge, skills, and training they need to be successful. Over the past few years, the PLS faculty has adopted a variety of initiatives to support reflection and improvement in the design and delivery of curriculum, instruction, and assessment. Of these initiatives, Authentic Intellectual Work (AIW) is designed for faculty to collaborate in small groups, scoring videos of instruction, student work, and the teacher-created activities students are engaged in. Our PreK-12 building allows faculty from a variety of grade levels and disciplines to work together to share ideas, revise lessons, and monitor progress in our students' learning. The AIW initiative has been a helpful tool for our faculty to use to evaluate the success of our January Term (J-Term) projects. As the pilot school for the implementation of the Iowa Core Curriculum, PLS faculty have also centered our PD around revising courses and programs in order to ensure our students are prepared for success in the 21st century. providing pupil services As the elementary school counselor at PLS for the past 27 years, I have provided pupil services in four main areas: curriculum, individual student planning, responsive services, and system support. In my role as a school counselor, I am fortunate to work with all of the students. They ``carry'' me with them from year to year as they move from teacher to teacher. Research shows that students do better academically when they feel supported by caring and qualified adults. Additionally, they are less likely to engage in risky, violent, or self-destructive behaviors.
Curriculum: In 2005, PLS developed a standards-based PreK- 5 guidance curriculum, which is integrated into the classroom teachers' curricula called the Buddy Circles program. Buddy Circles partners PLS 4th graders with their peers from a school for children with severe disabilities. The accompanying guidance curriculum emphasizes that all people have abilities and limitations, all people have feelings, and friendship is important for all kids. The program promotes social- emotional knowledge and skills. Pre- and post-data gathered each year through student interviews has shown that student empathy and compassion are heightened as a result of the program. Individual Student Planning: School counselors are often the connecting link between students, parents, classroom teachers, special education teachers, school psychologists, and other support staff in developing and implementing individual learning and behavior plans. This kind of team support, coupled with setting specific goals and collecting data, has helped a group of 4th graders I work with to show significant improvement in being respectful, following directions, and getting their work done. Responsive Services: In my capacity as a school counselor, I have been called upon to meet the immediate needs of students through individual and small group counseling, ongoing consultation with teachers and parents, and referrals to community agencies and programs for students and families. Recently, I teamed with PLS's other school counselor in assisting a family with an elementary school student and a middle school student to get support from the Iowa Department of Human Services and the justice system to keep them safe from their father--a methamphetamine dealer and user who is prone to unpredictable behavior and violent outbursts. System Support: I provide and participate in ongoing PD that includes school counseling, the school improvement process, school climate, and character education data-gathering and interpretation. Since 2008, I have worked closely with the Iowa Department of Education and the Iowa Area Education Agencies to survey all Iowa school counselors about their roles and responsibilities and the kinds of support they need to ensure that all students are successful learners who feel safe. Pupil services providers are vital to fostering and sustaining a school climate that embraces the five tenets of the ASCD Whole Child Initiative--healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged. Congress can best support the work of pupil service providers by establishing policies that promote: Innovative and useful reform that requires State and local governments to dismantle the obstacles to collaboration between and among school systems and the social, health, and safety services that support children. Alternate pathways to graduation that are available to all students. An adult mentor for every student--one who supports individualized learning opportunities that engage students in relevant curriculum and challenging education plans. The facilitation of school partnerships with community service agencies and other local entities. Flexible grouping and flexible timeframes to measure success, which enables schools to develop alternative approaches to the Carnegie Unit and other traditional conventions such as the traditional school day and year. Publicly reporting the ratio of counselors and support staff to students--with an effort toward meeting the goal of the ASCA- recommended 250:1 student-to-counselor ratio. School turnaround strategies that incorporate the tenets of the Whole Child Initiative--with special attention to fortifying the relationships and interpersonal connections among students, staff, and families--to support student achievement. Content assessments that are valid, reliable, and comprehensible for English language learners and students with disabilities. ASCD believes each student deserves access to personalized learning and support from qualified, caring adults. Research shows that, in addition to improving students' academic performance, supportive schools also help prevent a host of negative consequences, including isolation, violent behavior, dropping out of school, and suicide. Central to a supportive school are teachers, administrators, and other caring adults who take a personal interest in each student and in the success of each student. healthy PLS and ASCD believe that each student deserves to enter school healthy and ready to learn about and practice a healthy lifestyle. Research has confirmed that students do better in school when they are emotionally and physically healthy. PLS is committed to a culture of wellness. The K-10 daily physical education program and K-11 weekly health program focus on students as engaged and reflective learners who possess the knowledge, skills, fitness, and dispositions to pursue physical activities and make healthy choices. This leads directly into our Junior/Senior Healthy Active Lifestyles course, which allows students to use the tools they have learned in their previous daily PE experiences to effectively manage their time and take responsibility for their own health and fitness in real-world experiences. It is my hope that as Congress looks to reauthorize the Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act and ESEA, it will support policies that ensure physical education and health education classes emphasize lifetime healthy behaviors. Our most successful effort at school wellness has been the creation of our Grassroots Cafe. We have gone from purchasing processed foods to supporting local farmers by buying fresh meat, produce, and beverages from their farms. Students have also become educated on food and how it affects their own health, the local community, and the world. Students have planted and harvested vegetables from their own garden on campus under the leadership of a PLS volunteer. The students also maintain a composting pile near the garden. Our average number of students eating school lunch increased from 160 to 220 this year. I'd like to thank Chairman Harkin and Senators Murkowski, Brown, Casey, and Bennet for their leadership on efforts to improve the nutritional content of school meals provided by the Federal school lunch program. While not every school has the same access to local farmers and high-quality, nutritious foods as we do at PLS, every child deserves to have meals that are healthy and nutritious and that promote good eating habits. ASCD suggests Congress can promote healthy students by enacting policies that: Use State report cards to measure and publicly report on the health, safety, and education of children and families and that offer a comprehensive look at the circumstances (e.g., hunger, poverty, crime, literacy, and health) of children and the factors that influence student success. Establish coordinated school health advisory councils as part of schools' improvement efforts. Ensure that physical education and health education classes emphasize lifetime healthy behaviors. safe PLS and ASCD believe that each student deserves to learn in an intellectually challenging environment that is physically and emotionally safe. Children who don't feel safe at school can't concentrate on their studies, don't connect well with their classmates, or don't go to school at all. At PLS, we have a well-established comprehensive and developmental school counseling program based upon the ASCA model, which addresses the academic, career, and personal/ social development of every PreK-12 student. Two licensed Iowa school counselors serve the PreK-12 enrollment of 370. This student-counselor ratio allows the counselors to get to know all of the students and families they serve. These counselors developed a PreK-5 bullying prevention program--Be a Buddy, Not a Bully!--that has been successfully used at PLS as well as other schools throughout Iowa, the United States, and the world. The Des Moines Register reported in 2008 that graduates of PLS ranked second for grade point average in the most difficult courses and in the Top 10 for overall freshman grade point average at the three Iowa Regents universities. The 2007 and 2008 National Schools of Character Finalist evaluation reports cite the PLS school counseling program as a crucial link in this intellectually challenging environment and caring community. To promote school settings that are physically and emotionally safe for every student and adult, ASCD proposes that Congress develop a set of more comprehensive indicators of student well-being in ESEA: Disaggregated statistics about student security, discipline, and support to help inform teacher professional development activities and integrate climate and culture strategies into school improvement plans at the school and district level. Publicly reported survey data from students, staff, and families on the school climate, parent satisfaction, and family outreach. Evidence of family communication and engagement plans at both the district and school level. engaged PLS and ASCD believe each student deserves to be actively engaged in learning and connected to the school and broader community. To help facilitate this type of connectedness, PLS offers January and May Term courses that engage students in project-based learning. This year, J- Term was a pilot for all elementary, 8th grade, and 11th grade students. May Term will be for all PreK-12 students. We anticipate this becoming a standing practice at PLS. Students propose a project or choose from a variety of teacher-developed projects. The 11th grade J-Term projects included hosting a talk radio show, investigating string theory, engaging in multiple service learning experiences, job shadowing, and learning how to play the guitar. The 8th graders participated in The Empathy Project for J-Term. In small groups, students are effecting positive change in our school and community by developing films that create awareness, engender empathy, and call viewers to action. Elementary students created games to teach others about the floods in response to the widespread devastation in our community; planned and held a garage sale they titled ``Hope for Haiti,'' where they earned $313.09 they donated to the Red Cross; and engaged in Spanish cooking to complement what they learned in their elementary Spanish classes. These project-based learning experiences help PLS students develop 21st century skills such as demonstrating initiative and self direction, using individual talents and skills for productive outcomes, effectively managing time, and performing work without oversight. They also increase student options and voice in what they learn, as well as how they learn and demonstrate what they've learned. I was actively engaged in the overall planning and implementation of the J-Term and May Term projects at the elementary level. I also co- taught a course to 3d through 5th graders titled, ``The Tibetan Culture: Building Community Through Compassion,'' in preparation for the Dalai Lama's visit to UNI in May 2010. Our group of 3d through 5th graders had the opportunity to visit with the Venerable Geshe Thupten Dorjee, an ordained Tibetan Buddhist monk from Drepung Loseling Monastery in southern India. They also did Tibetan cooking and music and created their own mandala with Tibetan students studying at UNI. According to ASCD, Congress can support systemic reforms to promote student engagement, such as intellectually challenging school environments; opportunities for community service, apprenticeships, and internships; a relevant and exploratory middle-level curriculum; high school redesign that includes a rigorous curriculum and meaningful relationship with caring adults; and incentives to businesses and local community services to become more involved in the educational process. supported PLS and ASCD believe each student deserves access to personalized learning and support from qualified, caring adults. In 2005-2006, after participating in a book study of Nobody Left to Hate by Elliot Aronson, the PLS middle school teachers made the shared decision to revitalize the Advisory Program for grades 6-8. Our goal was to ensure that each student felt valued and respected at school. We decided to transition the advisory groups from meeting once a month to meeting daily. The PLS middle school students and teachers have benefited from an established meeting time every day of the week. Each day, the advisory groups meet in cooperative learning groups to participate in developmentally appropriate activities and moral discussions in order to meet the social-emotional needs of each student. The success of the PLS Middle School Advisory Program continues to be seen on a daily basis as trusting relationships are formed between students and teachers. It has been said that the students often view their advisor as an ``in-school parent.'' Middle school is a difficult stage for many young people. Research tells us that this is where many of our students either make the unconscious decision to continue their journey toward high school graduation or begin the process of becoming a dropout. Numerous warning signs such as chronic absenteeism and truancy, behavior problems, and academic struggles prove to be early indicators of their academic future. It is with this in mind that I want to thank Senator Hagan and Senator Klobuchar for their leadership on combating middle school truancy. The Student Attendance Success Act's recognition of the need for a whole child approach to combat truancy reflects a true understanding of the complexities of this issue and the comprehensive solutions needed to deal with it. I teach guidance units to the PreK-5 classes. This provides a wonderful foundation for me to get to know all the students and a venue for me to teach them critical life skills through topics such as feelings, friends, differences and similarities, social skills, conflict resolution, diversity, choices, and so forth. I also facilitate many small groups to support children dealing with divorce, death of a loved one, family members with a serious illness, family members with addictions, friendship concerns, social skills needs, worries, and perfectionism. I provide individual counseling to many PreK-12 students to support them through difficult times in their lives. challenged PLS and ASCD believe each graduate deserves to be challenged academically and prepared for success in college and further study and for employment in a global environment. To succeed in college, other post-secondary education, civic society, and the workplace, students need higher-level thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills. In order to prepare our students for success in their post-secondary experiences, PLS has created a multi-component Junior/Senior Options Program to serve as a launching pad for students to success after high school, whether in work, college, the military, or another experience. The Junior/Senior Options Program consist of viable alternatives for students to personalize their own curriculum that relates to and helps order their future plans. Some of the options students can choose to participate in are dual enrollment university courses, individualized study courses, internships with local businesses/ industry/organizations, cadet teaching, and a senior project designed and implemented by the student. The scheduling flexibility and personalized curriculum provides students the opportunity to refine their organizational skills, time management skills, and independent decisionmaking skills. Approximately 84 percent of the current seniors and 66 percent of the current juniors are participating in at least one of the Junior/Senior Options. From the 2009 graduating class, 94 percent took the ACT and went on to further their education at 2- or 4- year colleges or universities. These statistics strongly correlate with the number of students participating in the Junior/Senior Options Program. Innovative approaches to keeping secondary students engaged in their learning, coupled with flexible programs that incorporate various different student skills and school and community stakeholders, have proven effective to help students find relevance in their learning and encourage them to complete their studies. I want to thank Senators Bingaman, Dodd, Reed, Murray, Brown, Casey, Hagan, Merkley, Franken, and Bennett for their leadership on the Graduation Promise Act and the Secondary School Innovation Fund Act. These two pieces of legislation are aimed at providing the challenging learning environments all students deserve, by promoting the types of innovative approaches that we at PLS are incorporating into our practice. ASCD has recommended that the next iteration of ESEA include growth model accountability for each child, college- and career-readiness standards that go beyond proficiency solely in reading and math but include all core academic subjects, and enactment of the Secondary School Innovation Fund Act. conclusion We can no longer afford to develop the range of education and noneducation policies affecting children or operate the resulting programs serving them in isolation; we must work to coordinate and integrate them for the benefit of students rather than the interests of adults or bureaucracies. Building this synchronization into policies at that outset will lead to more efficient and effective results for children. Pupil services providers such as school counselors, school psychologists, school social workers, and school nurses can be a constant force in developing and maintaining a positive school climate and a culture of caring where all students feel connected, safe, and able to learn. I want to close with the words written to me by two of our graduates: ``I was just thinking about elementary school and what it meant to me and you were the first person to pop into my mind. Visions of puppets and smiling children, small group and big group sessions. The more I thought about this the more I realized what a major role you played in my childhood and for that I am most grateful.'' ``Thank you for all the opportunities you gave me to grow and experience new things like mentoring the little kids.'' Children who are hurting, hungry, scared, and disengaged cannot learn. We cannot focus on achievement alone. Join with me to ensure that each child is healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged. The Chairman. Ms. Rittling, please. STATEMENT OF NIKKI RITTLING, EDUCATOR, WONDERFUL WILLARDS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, WILLARDS, MD Ms. Rittling. Good morning, Chairman Harkin and members of the committee. Thank you for inviting me here today to talk about my efforts at my elementary school to ensure a rich curriculum for our students. I am the physical education teacher and team leader for the integration team at Wonderful Willards Elementary School on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Willards is set in a farming community which lacks a variety of cultural and arts experiences nearby. Seven years ago, as a targeted title I school, Willards also struggled with low test scores in reading and math. For these reasons, the school's administration challenged the teachers to implement an arts integration program. Since then, we have implemented a successful arts integration program, which has been identified by both The Arts Education in Maryland Schools and The John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts as a Maryland School of Distinction. Because we are only a pre-K through second grade school, we don't have quantitative data, but we have seen our test scores rise. So, what does this all mean? We define arts integration as the seamless blending of arts area objectives and content area objectives within the same lessons where natural connections occur. The components embedded into our program meet our students' educational needs, cultural needs, and demographic needs by helping to differentiate instruction. The teacher and student work cooperatively to embrace creativity, innovation, high-level thinking, and risk taking. Not only do we explore the various art forms and how to integrate them, but we also examine how they impact children's motivation, learning, comprehension, development of critical thinking, and problem-solving skills. For the students, this not only means there is daily integration of the arts into the curriculum, but also to experience an artist in residence. In a residency, artists work cooperatively with the classroom teachers to align their art form with the core curriculum. As a school, we also study a country each school year. Last year, we experienced the cultures of South Africa, and currently, we are celebrating India. At the conclusion of our country study, all students participate in a year-end celebration where the students use the arts and sciences to build a parade with floats, costumes, banners, music, and dance as they travel through the community sharing their knowledge. To facilitate the program, we have in place a Willards integration network, which I lead. As the team leader, I am responsible for any number of things including writing grants, sharing to help other schools in the district begin their own program, working with parents in the community, and providing professional development. Getting together as a team is as important in sustaining our program as is the tremendous support we get from leaders in our district. Arts integration has impacted our entire school community and school environment, nurturing the whole child. I am often awestruck by the students' creativity, innovation, and willingness to take creative risks. As the students take risks in learning and creativity, the teachers do, too. I again thank you for the opportunity to share our story with you and welcome any questions the committee may have. [The prepared statement of Ms. Rittling follows:] Prepared Statement of Nikki Rittling Good Morning. Chairman Harkin and members of the committee, thank you for inviting me here today to talk about efforts at my elementary school to ensure a rich curriculum for our students. My name is Nikki Rittling and I am the physical education teacher and team leader for the Integration Team at Wonderful Willards Elementary School on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Willards is set in a farming community which lacks a variety of cultural and arts experiences nearby. Seven years ago, as a targeted title I school Willards also struggled with low test scores in reading and math. For these reasons, the school's administration challenged the teachers to implement an arts integration program. We happily took on that task. Since then, we have implemented a successful arts integration program which has been identified by both The Arts Education in Maryland Schools (AEMS) and The John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts as a Maryland School of Distinction. Because we are only a preK-2d grade school we don't have quantitative data, but we have seen our test scores rise. We are now consistently in the top 3 in our district and the only targeted title I school at the top of the ranks. So, what does it all mean? We define arts integration as the seamless blending of arts area objectives and content area objectives within the same lesson where natural connections occur. The four basic art forms that we focus on are: visual art, music, dance/movement and drama. The components embedded into our program meet our students' educational needs, cultural needs and demographic needs; while helping to differentiate instruction. The teacher and student work cooperatively to embrace creativity, innovation, high level thinking and risk taking. The students are safe and comfortable in an environment which values them as a lifelong creative learner. Not only do we explore the various art forms and how to integrate them, but we also examine how they impact children's motivation, learning, comprehension, development of critical thinking, and problem-solving skills. As the only full-time specialist, excitement for this type of teaching and my familiarity with most dance/movement standards, I was appointed as the Willards Integration Network (WIN) Team Leader. The WIN team plans and provides professional development opportunities and also facilitates school-wide arts activities. As the team leader, I am responsible for any number of things including writing grants, sharing to help other schools in the district begin their own programs, and providing professional development. Getting together as a team is as important in sustaining our program as is the tremendous support of the leaders in our school and district. For the students, this not only means there is daily integration of arts into the curriculum but also to experience an artist in residence. In a residency, artists work cooperatively with the classroom teachers to align their art form with the core curriculum. As a school we also study a country each school year. Last year, we experienced the culture of South Africa and currently we are celebrating India. At the conclusion of our country study, all students participate in a year-end celebration where the students use the arts and sciences to build a parade with floats, costumes, banners, music and dance as they travel through the community sharing their knowledge. When studying South Africa a group of students played South African rhythms on drums while other students performed the South African Gumboot dance. At times, it is natural to combine the cultural study with the arts. This provides students with a tremendous amount of knowledge. In learning about China the students used interpretative dance to share facts about Chinese culture. The students were charged to individually develop movements using long strips of fabric to match these facts and dance them to Chinese flute music. Because the students were able to work successfully and meet all expectations for the task, they performed this for our school community and about 100 visitors. In addition to the support of our school leaders, the success of the program also rests on continued and varied professional development. Within the school building, the WIN team hosts monthly teacher workshops to help provide strategies to integrate. An example was a recent workshop during which teachers paralleled visual arts, writing and language arts to create a story mural. Providing on-going professional development also pushes teachers to integrate weekly and sometimes daily. Other professional development has been for groups of specific subject-matter teachers within the district and collaborations with teaching artists and university professors. We have also participated in intensive 5-day workshops at the Maryland Artist Teacher Institute each summer, which helps to provide our school team the tools to plan for integration in the coming school year. Arts integration has impacted our entire school community and school environment nurturing the whole child. For those students who have been in the school for 4 years, I am often awe struck by their creativity, innovation and willingness to take creative risks. Over time, the students have trained themselves to think in an alternate way, to think independently and to learn beyond a text book. Arts integration has impacted the teachers and my own teaching. As the students take risks in learning and creativity the teachers do too. With the implementation of our program 7 years ago, teachers and their teaching were renewed. I find that teaching in this way challenges me, helps me to stay current and vary my teaching. Willards Elementary has come a long way in the 7 years of the arts integration program, all for the benefit of its students. We are proof that you can provide a rich curriculum while still focusing on the important academic needs of our students. I again thank you for the opportunity to share our story with you and welcome any questions that the committee may have. The Chairman. Thank you very much, Ms. Rittling. Now we will hear from Ms. Jefferies. STATEMENT OF LYNSEY WOOD JEFFERIES, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, DC METRO HIGHER ACHIEVEMENT, WASHINGTON, DC Ms. Jefferies. Thank you, Senator Harkin, and thank you to the members of the committee. On behalf of Higher Achievement, I am delighted to be here today. I have witnessed over the last 10 years, as both a volunteer and a staff member with Higher Achievement, hundreds of lives changed through our program. I want to answer your questions, your two questions based on that experience. First, what do we do? Higher Achievement was founded in 1975, and we currently serve more than 600 students in DC, Maryland, and Virginia. We are a year-round, meaning afterschool and summer, academic enrichment program. There are six things that I think make us special and relevant to this conversation. First is our year-round, multiyear commitment that the young people make during middle school. Second, that we intervene purposefully during this high- risk middle school transition time. Third, that every child in our program has 3 weekly mentors. That is unique. I don't know of any other program that does that, certainly not in the District. Fourth, that our afterschool and summer curriculum is aligned to the school standards, but it is accelerated, and it is more engaging. Fifth, that we have close partnerships with schools and parents. We really see it as a three-legged stool--parents, schools, and then the afterschool and summer programs. And then, finally, that we create a culture of high expectations and support for our scholars. We measure our results in three ways--internal evaluation, external evaluation, and then individual stories. Internally, we have found that despite the fact that in DC, only 9 percent of students finish college, of Higher Achievement scholars, 93 percent finish college. That is awesome. Second, externally, we have a study going on. We are the subject of a randomized study right now by Public/Private Ventures, and it is getting a lot of national attention. We will have the results next year. Then, third, personal stories. I might go a little over, but I want to share one personal story. Tariq West is an alum of Higher Achievement. He grew up in southeast Washington, the sixth of eight siblings in southeast Washington, and he should have been a statistic. In that neighborhood, only 40 percent of students finish high school, and it is riddled with violence. Tariq worked with his Higher Achievement mentors afterschool, in the summer, and was placed into one of the best high schools in DC. I am delighted to say he has been very busy since then. He has done internships with Deloitte, with Microsoft. He started nonprofits, including ones around human rights in Sudan. He is now, I am delighted to say, next month going to graduate with honors from Stanford University. And in this economy, Booz Allen is holding a job for him, has been holding it for 4 months. I just think it is a wonderful story. On top of that, a testament to his condition and his commitment to Higher Achievement, he is a frequent and generous donor to us. And when he moves back to Washington, he has promised to be a mentor with Higher Achievement. Thank you. [The prepared statement of Ms. Jefferies follows:] Prepared Statement of Lynsey Wood Jefferies summary about higher achievement Higher Achievement's rigorous after-school and summer academic program gives youth from at-risk communities their best opportunity to succeed in middle school--and in life. Our research-based program challenges middle school students to meet their full potential in three key areas: academics, social skills, and leadership. When students get the skills and support they need to invest in their own success, they discover that they can be scholars. On average, 95 percent of Higher Achievement scholars who complete the program advance to top academic high schools and 93 percent graduate from college. Founded in 1975, Higher Achievement currently serves more than 600 scholars per year and, in partnership with local schools, operates achievement centers in Washington, DC; Alexandria, VA; and Baltimore, MD. The organization is expanding to an additional five cities in the next 5 years, with plans to serve 2,300 scholars per year by 2015. Higher Achievement is funded by support from foundations, businesses, government, and individuals. The organization has been honored with numerous national awards. how do we measure our effectiveness Higher Achievement provides 650 additional hours of academic instruction and mentoring during out-of-school time, on top of the 900 hours students spend in school. This intensity pays off with a proven track record of tangible results: Seventy-seven percent of scholars improved or maintained As and Bs in reading, and 65 percent in math, in 1 year. One hundred percent of scholars improved their DC CAS (standardized test) score by an average of 20 percent. Eighty-nine percent of scholars improved their school attendance or maintained perfect school attendance. Ninety-three percent graduate from college. Further, Higher Achievement is the subject of a ground-breaking, randomized, longitudinal study by Public/Private Ventures. Funded by the William T. Grant Foundation and Atlantic Philanthropies, this rigorous evaluation started in 2006 and will conclude in 2011, comparing Higher Achievement participants to an equivalent control group. These results are a testament to Higher Achievement's model. This data demonstrate that quality out-of-school time programs cannot only stop the ``middle school slide'' that widens the achievement gap--they can reverse it. ______ Chairman Harkin, Ranking Member Enzi, and members of the committee. On behalf of Higher Achievement, I thank you for this opportunity to testify about meeting the needs of the whole student. Higher Achievement provides an after-school and summer program that aligns with schools' educational goals and coordinates with schools and communities to prepare middle school students for success in high school and beyond. In my 10 years as both a volunteer and staff member with Higher Achievement, I have worked with hundreds of students and seen the value of this approach firsthand. Our organization has seen concrete results for more than 35 years and I believe that Higher Achievement is particularly qualified to discuss the benefits of and approaches to extended learning opportunities. about higher achievement Higher Achievement's rigorous after-school and summer academic program gives youth from at-risk communities their best opportunity to succeed in middle school--and in life. Our research-based program challenges middle school students to meet their full potential in three key areas: academics, social skills, and leadership. When students get the skills and support they need to invest in their own success, they discover that they can be scholars. On average, 95 percent of Higher Achievement scholars who complete the program advance to top academic high schools and 93 percent graduate from college. Founded in 1975, Higher Achievement currently serves more than 600 scholars per year and, in partnership with local schools, operates achievement centers in Washington, DC; Alexandria, VA; and Baltimore, MD. The organization is expanding to an additional five cities in the next 5 years, with plans to serve 2,300 scholars per year by 2015. Higher Achievement is funded by support from foundations, businesses, government, and individuals. The organization has been honored with numerous national awards. Unique aspects of our program: Year-round, multi-year commitment. Intervention during the high-risk middle school transition. Every child has three weekly mentors. After-school and summer curriculum is aligned to school standards. Close partnership with schools. Measurable results, continual data-driven improvement. Project-based learning, college trips, field trips, and academic competitions to make learning fun. how do we measure our effectiveness? Higher Achievement provides 650 additional hours of academic instruction and mentoring during out-of-school time, on top of the 900 hours students spend in school. This intensity pays off with a proven track record of tangible results: Seventy-seven percent of scholars improved or maintained As and Bs in reading, and 65 percent in math, in 1 year. One-hundred percent of scholars improved their DC CAS (standardized test) score by an average of 20 percent, compared to an average improvement of 3 percent among DCPS students overall. Eighty-nine percent of scholars improved their school attendance or maintained perfect school attendance. Eighty-nine percent of scholars reduced their number of days tardy to school or maintained zero days tardy. Ninety-five percent advance to top academic high schools. Ninety-three percent graduate from college. Further, Higher Achievement is the subject of a ground-breaking, randomized, longitudinal study by Public/Private Ventures. Funded by the William T. Grant Foundation and Atlantic Philanthropies, this rigorous evaluation started in 2006 and will conclude in 2011, comparing Higher Achievement participants to an equivalent control group. These results are a testament to Higher Achievement's model. This data demonstrate that quality out-of-school time programs cannot only stop the ``middle school slide'' that widens the achievement gap--they can reverse it. tariq: a portrait of achievement Numbers show that our proven model can lead to measurable outcomes that our scholars deserve--success in high school and beyond. Tariq's story shows what that outcome means in practice. Tariq should have been a statistic. He grew up the sixth of eight children in southeast DC in the late 90s. In our Nation's capital, 57 percent of DC students drop out of high school and 91 percent \1\ do not finish college. In southeast, the community is riddled with violence. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \1\ Gates Foundation, ``Double the Numbers'' 2008. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- This was Tariq's reality. But, his conditions did not define him. Tariq beat those odds with the help of Higher Achievement and his mentors. He dedicated his afternoons, evenings, and summers in middle school to Higher Achievement and it paid off. With the help of Higher Achievement and his mentors, Tariq was placed in a top high school. Since graduating high school, he has been busy. He has completed competitive internships with Microsoft and Deloitte, studied abroad in Madrid, led the student government, and started several nonprofits, including Access Sudan, a human rights advocacy group. Next month, Tariq is graduating from Stanford University, with honors. Booz Allen has been holding a job for him for 4 months. A testament to his compassion, at age 21, Tariq gives often and generously to Higher Achievement and will mentor with us when he returns to Washington. In his words, ``I grew up keenly aware of poverty and hopelessness, but also feeling incredibly empowered, and compelled to change the world in the ways that I can.'' after-school and summer instruction By drawing attention to ``meeting the needs of the whole student,'' this committee has recognized that although improvements to students' in-school experience are critical, our students need more. This is especially true for students living in underserved communities. We agree that every student should graduate from high school ready for college and a career. To realize this shared goal for our public education system, we need to provide high-quality out-of-school time educational opportunities that can be aligned with academic outcomes during the school year. At Higher Achievement, our curriculum is paced slightly ahead of the public school standards and it is delivered in small groups (3:1 ratio) by volunteer mentors. Every child in our program has 3 weekly mentors, who teach lessons in math, literature, and elective seminars. Further, our scholars compete in academic contests that make learning fun, including a spelling bee, literary love poetry contest, debate contest, and more. Higher Achievement does not stop with after-school programming. Our underserved scholars, and truly all students, need more. It is abundantly clear that we need to increase our national commitment to quality summertime programming. More than half of the achievement gap between lower- and higher-income youth can be explained by unequal access to summer learning opportunities.\2\ Low-income students lose more than 2 months of grade equivalency in math and reading during summer months.\3\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \2\ Alexander, 2007. \3\ Cooper, 1996. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- At Higher Achievement, we counteract this ``summer learning loss'' with our Summer Academy, which complements the after-school program and connects students' academic experience with their expectations for the future--including overnight trips to top universities like Penn State or Virginia Tech. The summer lessons in math, literature, science and social studies are aligned to the school standards at an accelerated pace. So, for example, if a student just finished 6th grade, she will learn 7th grade material in the summer. Further, our Summer Academy is replete with fun academic contests: Model UN, mock trial, science fairs, and the Olympics of the Mind, to name a few. The school year should not be the only time when young people are focused upon their education and future. In underserved communities, where the ``summer learning loss'' compounds existing achievement gaps, summer programming is critical. aligning after school and summer work with school standards When Higher Achievement enters a school district, we bring a commitment to our scholars and their community. We commit to help the scholars translate their hard work into opportunity. We meet this commitment by partnering with schools, districts, and communities to ensure that our programming is aligned with the standards that the students will have to meet. For example, Higher Achievement eighth graders study mass transit systems in order to practice setting up and solving linear equations and inequalities with one or two variables--a discrete math skill they are expected to master during their eighth grade year. Out-of-school time programs can and should be expected to measure their success in the context of a student's general academic success. The most effective OST academic experiences are those that align with what students learn in school, and act as a true partner to families and schools in supporting a child's academic growth. Higher Achievement does this by working closely with teachers of the students it serves, and with each family to monitor individual progress, and adjusting each student's learning plan accordingly. conclusion The difference between the child who drops out of high school and the child who goes to college is not talent, but lack of opportunity. Equal access to opportunity is every child's right--and yet it does not exist. Therefore this must be our call to action. The Chairman. Very good. Thank you, Ms. Jefferies. Now we will turn to Ms. Henderson. STATEMENT OF ANNE T. HENDERSON, SENIOR CONSULTANT, COMMUNITY ORGANIZING AND ENGAGEMENT, ANNENBERG INSTITUTE FOR SCHOOL REFORM, WASHINGTON, DC Ms. Henderson. Thank you for the opportunity to speak, Mr. Chairman, and for sponsoring a committee on such an important topic. Today, I am here as a member of the National Family, School, and Community Engagement Working Group, which is composed of leading practitioners, researchers, funders, and policy experts who are committed to family engagement. I hope I can address your question of how we get families involved. First, I would like to quell forever the misconception that family engagement is something soft and squishy that doesn't have any hard data to back it up. Because I have been tracking this now for 30 years--the research--and I can assure everybody in the room that engaging especially low-income and nontraditional families will raise student achievement. It will lower the dropout rate, and it will help close our achievement gap. We measure the effectiveness of family engagement not by the number of people who come to back-to-school night, but by its impact on student achievement. That is what counts. Let me give you an example of what happened when Austin Interfaith, which is a family and community organizing group, collaborated with the Austin Independent School District to turn around struggling schools in the poorest parts of the city. The schools that had the most intensive involvement in the initiative saw a 20 percent increase in the number of students who were passing the State test in a fairly short amount of time, and teachers and administrators and district officials all credited the work of the community group in turning that around. Yet despite all of this evidence that I have been tracking all these years, family engagement is a low priority, and schools are struggling with how to do it. Teachers say it is their No. 1 area where they feel least well prepared, and they think it is the most important thing they need to do. Clearly, there is a misfit. Rather than committing what our working group calls ``random acts of parent involvement,'' we need to scale up innovative research-based approaches that are going to improve achievement and turn around our failing schools. Now, at the outset, I can remember--I am old enough to remember when the Elementary and Secondary Education Act was passed in 1965. It was part of the war on poverty, and a watchword was ``maximum feasible participation.'' It has always been a big part of this law, and I think it is very important that we strengthen and continue that commitment to our children and families because without family engagement, we are definitely dealing with just a part of the child. I offer four recommendations. The first of which is to let us move away from rigid compliance-based strategies to provide incentives to schools and districts and State education agencies to implement proven approaches through both continuing a mandatory set-aside so that even though it might be a low priority, they still have to do it, and competitive grants. And second, let us build the capacity of our schools and districts and our State agencies to engage families from early childhood all the way through college graduation. One way to do this will be to strengthen the parent involvement resource centers that are now in every State. Let us provide professional development to our teachers and school leaders on how to do this. And finally, invest in rigorous research. To close, if parents aren't onboard, we are going to leave the whole child behind. [The prepared statement of Ms. Henderson follows:] Prepared Statement of Anne T. Henderson summary The evidence is clear--schools cannot close the achievement gap without partnering with families. Over 40 years of research has demonstrated that engaging families in their children's education improves student achievement, attendance, and behavior, and increases graduation rates.\1\ Children spend 70 percent of their waking hours outside of school, and how they spend that time is critical to their success in school.\2\ Modest investments in increasing families' knowledge and skills to support learning can leverage our larger investment in teacher quality and school improvement. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \1\ Anne T. Henderson and Karen L. Mapp, A New Wave of Evidence: the Impact of Family, School, and Community Connections on Student Achievement (Austin, TX: Southwest Educational Development Laboratory, 2002). H.B. Weiss, S.M. Bouffard, B.L. Bridglall and E.W. Gordon, Reframing Family Involvement in Education: Supporting Families to Support Educational Equity. Campaign for Educational Equity (Teachers College, Columbia University, December 2009). \2\ Reginald Clark, ``Ten Hypotheses about what predicts student achievement for African-American student and all other students: what the research shows,'' in Walter L. Allen ET al. (eds), African-American Education: Race, Community, Inequality and Achievement--A Tribute to Edgar G. Epps (Oxford, UK: Elsevier Science, 2002). --------------------------------------------------------------------------- Despite this strong evidence, there is a lack of capacity at the State, district, and school level for engaging families, and Federal and State policies offer few incentives to remedy the situation. Teachers have repeatedly identified parent involvement as one of the most important ways to improve education, yet they also list parent engagement as the area where they feel least prepared and least satisfied with their own performance.\3\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \3\ The MetLife Survey of the American Teachers: Transitions and the Role of Supportive Relationships (NY: Harris Interactive, 2005). --------------------------------------------------------------------------- Instead, schools often commit ``random acts of parent involvement''--a back-to-school night or a flyer home on parent teacher conferences. Rather than focusing on scaling up innovative, research- based practices that engage families, districts and States tend to direct their resources toward monitoring compliance with the law. The National Family, School, and Community Engagement Working Group, composed of leading researchers, practitioners, policy experts, and funders committed to effective family engagement, has developed a research-based definition of what effective family engagement should look like: a shared responsibility for student success, in which schools and community organizations are committed to engaging families in meaningful ways and families are committed to actively supporting their children's learning and development. This shared responsibility is continuous from birth through young adulthood and reinforces learning that takes place in the home, school, and community. The reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) provides a critical opportunity to strengthen family engagement in education and build local capacity to scale up research-based practices that drive student achievement. Since 1965, Congress has recognized the involvement of parents as a key driver in school improvement, especially in title I and low-income schools. As Congress works to reauthorize ESEA, it must ensure that effective family engagement is again a cornerstone of the law. Below is a brief summary of our recommendations: 1. Provide funding and incentives to promote effective family engagement at the school, district, and State level. 2. Strengthen Parental Information and Resource Centers (PIRCs) and focus their role on capacity-building to scale up research-based family engagement practices that improve student achievement. 3. Provide high-quality in-service and pre-service professional development to strengthen the knowledge and skills of teachers and principals to engage parents in raising student achievement. 4. Build statewide capacity to develop, coordinate, and implement family engagement initiatives from cradle to career. 5. Strengthen Federal support for research and coordination of cradle-to-career family engagement strategies and initiatives that reach families in underrepresented and underserved communities. ______ Chairman Harkin, Ranking Member Enzi, committee members, and my fellow distinguished panelists, I am honored to participate in this important hearing on the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). I am here today as a member of the National Family, School, and Community Engagement Working Group (FSCE Working Group) to share lessons from the research and the field that demonstrate the urgent need for effective family and community engagement in raising student achievement and driving school reform. The FSCE Working Group is a group of leading researchers, practitioners, and funders committed to family engagement in education. We offer the diverse expertise of our members to inform the development and implementation of sound Federal policy on family and community engagement in education. We are dedicated to mobilizing cradle to career pathways and partnerships among families, schools, and communities to promote readiness from kindergarten to college, improve schools, and increase student achievement. Over 40 years of research and effective practice demonstrate that families play critical roles in student success. They support their children's learning, guide them through a complex school system, advocate for better learning opportunities, and collaborate with educators and community organizations to push for school improvement. A strong relationship between families and schools is essential to eliminating the achievement gap and preparing all students for success in school and in life. Effective family engagement positions families as agents of change, who from the day their children are born, keep them on track to be successful in school, college and the workforce. The FSCE Working Group has identified three proven components of effective family engagement, which together provide a picture of what robust family engagement in education should look like. First, family engagement is a shared responsibility among schools, communities and families. From their side, schools and other community agencies and organizations must make the effort to engage families in meaningful and culturally respectful ways. And reciprocally, families must actively support their children's learning and development. Second, family engagement is continuous across a child's lifespan. Family engagement is not confined to traditional K-12 schooling, but rather begins from infancy, moves into early childhood programs, and continues through college and career, to support children during all stages of their development. Third, family engagement is carried out everywhere that children learn--at home, in pre-kindergarten programs, in school, in afterschool programs, in faith-based institutions, and in community programs and activities. overview of research on family and community engagement I have spent the last 30 years tracking the research that links family and community engagement to student success and school improvement, and then identifying effective practice that carries it out. In my most recent review of research with Dr. Karen Mapp of the Harvard Graduate School of Education, we found that family engagement is critical to closing the achievement gap. Specifically, when families are engaged in the education of their children, students' test scores and grades increase, and their attendance, attitudes and behavior improve. In addition, students are more likely to take higher-level classes, graduate from high school and continue to post-secondary education. The positive impact of school practices to engage families is greatest for low-income children, and the disparity in capacity between middle and low-income families to be engaged effectively is an engine of the achievement gap.\4\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \4\ Anne T. Henderson and Karen L. Mapp, A New Wave of Evidence: the Impact of Family, School, and Community Connections on Student Achievement (Austin, TX: Southwest Educational Development Laboratory, 2002). H.B. Weiss, S.M. Bouffard, B.L. Bridglall and E.W. Gordon, Reframing Family Involvement in Education: Supporting Families to Support Educational Equity. Campaign for Educational Equity (Teachers College, Columbia University, December 2009). --------------------------------------------------------------------------- A recent study on whole school improvement efforts demonstrates that effective family engagement is essential to turning around struggling schools. In their book synthesizing 15 years of research on school improvement, Anthony Bryk, John Easton and the other distinguished authors identify parent involvement as one of the five ``key ingredients'' to school improvement in low-income schools. This study, Organizing Schools for Improvement: Lessons from Chicago, demonstrates that engaging families is not an ``add-on'' activity, but rather a critical factor in improving academic achievement. Moreover, the study found that parental involvement is necessary to ensure the success of other school improvement efforts, including school leadership and curriculum alignment.\5\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \5\ Anthony S. Bryk, Penny Bender Sebring, Elaine Allensworth, Stuart Luppescu, and John Q. Easton, Organizing Schools for Improvement: Lessons from Chicago (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 2010). --------------------------------------------------------------------------- In this difficult economic time, it is important to note that engaging families is a cost-effective way to raise student achievement. Partnering with parents and the community to increase student success leverages local resources and capacity to drive education reform. In 2008, economists Andrew Houtenville and Karen Smith Conway published a study showing that schools would have to increase spending by over $1,000 per pupil to attain the same results that family engagement would yield.\6\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \6\ Andrew Houtenville, and Karen Smith Conway, ``Parental Effort, School Resources, and Student Achievement.'' Journal of Human Resources. XLIII, (2008), 437-53. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- Not only does engaging families improve student achievement, but building the advocacy and leadership capacity of parents drives school reform and improvement. A series of studies by the Annenberg Institute for School Reform in Providence, RI found that organizing and empowering parent leaders contributed to these changes in schools: Improved school leadership and staffing; Upgraded school facilities; New resources and programs to improve teaching and curriculum; and Higher quality learning programs for students.\7\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \7\ Kavitha Mediratta, Seema Shah, & Sara McAlister. Community Organizing for Stronger Schools: Strategies and Successes. (Cambridge MA: Harvard Education Press, 2009). Despite strong evidence that family engagement raises student achievement, decreases the dropout rate, and stimulates school improvement, the majority of current family engagement policy and practice is not strategic, sustained, or linked to children's learning and development. Instead, schools and districts often commit what we call random acts of parent involvement--a back-to-school night, a flyer home about parent-teacher conferences, or a 1-hour workshop on bullying practices. These practices do not engage parents in meaningful ways and fall short of achieving the desired effect--to raise student achievement and drive education reform. The dearth of effective family engagement practices at the local level does not stem from lack of interest from educators or parents. Both educators and parents want to work together in meaningful ways to increase student success, but they say they need guidance and support on how to form such a partnership. Despite contrary misperceptions, studies show that all parents, regardless of their income level or socioeconomic background, want to be involved in their child's education and understand the importance of going to college.\8\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \8\ Henderson and Mapp, 2008. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- In a recent survey by Hart Research and Associates, teachers listed increasing parent involvement as one of the most effective ways to improve public education--ranking it even higher than school discipline and the quality of school resources and facilities.\9\ These findings corroborate a 2005 survey of American teachers conducted by the Metlife Foundation. According to the survey, the biggest challenge that new teachers say they face is communicating with and involving parents. New teachers also identified engaging families as the area where they feel least prepared. Not surprisingly, they also reported that their relationship with students' parents is the area where they are least satisfied.\10\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \9\ Bridgeland, J.M., Dilulio, J., Streeter, R. & Mason, J.R. (2008). One Dream, Two Realities: Perspectives of Parents on America's High Schools. A report by Civic Enterprises in association with Peter D. Hart Research Associates for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. \10\ The MetLife Survey of the American Teachers: Transitions and the Role of Supportive Relationships (2005). NY: Harris Interactive. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- Congress has always recognized parent involvement as essential to ensuring equity and opportunity for all students. Since its inception in 1965, ESEA has included parents in efforts to improve education in low-income communities and hold schools and districts accountable for raising student achievement. Congress must move this work forward to ensure that parent engagement remains a cornerstone of Federal education law. national family, school, and community engagement work group public policy recommendations Despite this historic commitment, schools, districts, and States lack incentives and capacity to develop and scale-up proven, innovative approaches to engaging families. The FSCE Working Group offers five recommendations for the upcoming reauthorization of ESEA: 1. Provide incentives and funding for effective family engagement at the school, district, and State level. Increase mandatory funding for family engagement at the district level and for State Education Agencies (SEAs) to provide technical assistance and professional development on proven, research- based strategies that engage families to improve student learning. Increased guidance and incentives for implementing research-based strategies is needed to leverage the Federal investment in family engagement to prepare all students for college and career. For example, the collaboration among parents, the community organizing group Austin Interfaith, and the Austin Independent School District, led to significant improvements in school climate, parent engagement, teacher commitment and principal leadership. Schools that were deeply involved in this effort showed gains ranging from 15 to 19 points in the percent of students meeting minimum standards on the State test, compared to only 4 points in schools with lower levels of involvement.\11\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \11\ Kavitha Mediratta, Seema Shah, and Sara McAlister. Building Partnerships to Reinvent School Culture: Austin interfaith (Providence, RI: Annenberg Institute for School Reform, 2009). Engage families in ensuring all students are prepared for college and career by effectively communicating academic standards and assessment data and requiring that parents play an integral role in all --------------------------------------------------------------------------- school turnaround strategies. By engaging families in the school improvement process, schools and LEAs build capacity for systemic reform that will result in improved student achievement. When families and community members have ready access to the information and resources necessary to support their children's learning, they are in a stronger position to hold schools accountable. We ask you to leverage the substantial public and private investments in better data systems by ensuring that college- and career-ready standards, assessment, and performance data are communicated to families and communities in a language and variety of formats they can understand. In addition, this information must be disseminated via processes that enable them to play their multiple roles in keeping children on the pathway to college and career. 2. Strengthen Parental Information and Resource Centers (PIRCs) and focus their role on capacity-building and technical assistance, so that schools, districts, and States can scale up research-based family engagement practices that improve student achievement. Schools, districts, and States cannot implement effective family engagement strategies alone, and the PIRCs can help. The PIRCs are the only Federal program dedicated to engaging families in their children's education from cradle to career. There are 62 PIRCs across the Nation, in all States and territories, and they serve over 16 million parents annually--over 70 percent of them in title I and low-income schools. Congress can strengthen this program to provide high-quality capacity building and technical assistance to schools, districts, and other grantees to scale up research-based and innovative approaches that engage families and raise student achievement. Several PIRCs have already moved in this direction and are providing leadership on family engagement in their State--and having a significant impact on student achievement. For example, Utah PIRC has trained parent liaisons to work in 26 low-performing schools to focus specifically on family literacy and training for parents with limited English proficiency. The parent liaisons work with the district to create a curriculum for parents that offers not only literacy development but also strategies for reinforcing student learning at home and navigating the educational system. Over 90 percent of parents enrolled in this program report that their children's grades have improved. California PIRC-1 partners with 18 school districts to conduct parent leadership academies that build parent knowledge and skills on how to navigate the educational system and advocate for school improvement. A quasi-experimental study conducted in 2009 found that students with parents participating in this Project INSPIRE Parent Leadership Academy increased their English language arts score by 12.8 points and their math score by 18.5 points on California's State test. 3. Provide high-quality in-service and pre-service professional development to build the capacity of teachers and principals to engage parents in raising student achievement. Engaging parents in improving student achievement allows teachers and principals to share the responsibility of preparing all students for college and career. Unfortunately, teachers (especially new teachers) have identified family engagement as the primary area where they feel the most challenged and least prepared.\12\ It is critical to provide high-quality, job-embedded professional development to teachers and principals in effective and meaningful ways to engage families. Several districts and PIRCs across the country have already taken leadership on providing this training. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \12\ The MetLife Survey of the American Teachers: Transitions and the Role of Supportive Relationships (NY: Harris Interactive, 2005). --------------------------------------------------------------------------- For example, the Iowa PIRC's iSPIN program provides professional development, training, and support to teachers, parents, and administrators on how to partner to increase student academic achievement. The Iowa PIRC is housed within the School Administrators of Iowa to ensure that systemic family engagement is part of the school's core academic program. A recent and rigorous evaluation of the Solid Foundation program, from which iSPIN has been adapted, showed that participating schools had increases in student achievement that were significantly higher than in non-participating schools. The University of Arizona's math department houses Math and Parent Partners, which trains parent leaders and teachers to facilitate math workshops for parents so that they can support their children's math learning. Originally based in four States in the southwest, MAPPS Programs are now in place in nine States around the country. Results include enhanced teacher quality in math content knowledge, new approaches to teaching and learning math, and knowledge of meaningful ways to work with parents in math. An evaluation in two districts found that students of participating families improved as much as 80 percent on their standardized test scores. The Grow Your Own teacher initiative in Illinois aims to create a pipeline of highly qualified teachers, many of whom are parents from underserved communities, to improve teacher retention in low-income schools and hard-to-fill positions, and to increase the cultural competence and community connections of teachers. As of March 2009, the program has 500 candidates in the pipeline, nearly 90 percent are people of color with strong ties to their communities. 4. Build Statewide Capacity for Family Engagement. For too long, State education agencies have been agents of compliance, rather than creators of innovation. The reauthorization of ESEA provides an opportunity to build the capacity of States to provide leadership, support and compelling incentives for effective family engagement in education. Provide resources for States to build local capacity and offer incentives family engagement such as creating competitive grant programs for family engagement, hosting parent leadership academies or designing professional development. SEAs should create infrastructure to support the development and scaling up of effective practice as well as partner with other agencies and institutions to offer technical assistance and professional development to local schools and districts. Developing statewide data collection and evaluation system on family engagement can identify schools that would benefit from training and support, as well as to identify effective practice. For example, the Connecticut Department of Education has partnered with the CT PIRC to launch a program that has transformed ineffective family-school compacts into dynamic agreements between teachers and families to meet the goals of their school improvement plans. The program consists of professional development for high-need title I schools in urban districts, on-site technical assistance to school staff and parents as they develop their plans, mini-grants to cover the costs of workshops and meetings, and a formative assessment to guide schools toward increasingly effective practice. The Theory of Change Diagram (attached) documents the strategies used, actions taken, changes in attitudes and practice, and improved outcomes for students, teachers and families. Establish statewide family engagement coordinating councils comprised of parents, educators, the early learning, higher education, and business community, and community and faith-based organizations to coordinate family engagement initiatives across a child's lifespan and in all learning settings. Creating statewide councils will engage families and key stakeholders in building State capacity for integrating and coordinating family engagement policies, initiatives, and uses of funds from cradle to career--preventing fragmentation and create a statewide family engagement strategy that is systemic, sustained, and scalable. The Maryland Department of Education created M-PAC, the Maryland Parent Advisory Council, which works with key educational and community stakeholders to drive educational decisionmaking and ensure that family engagement is a core component of all educational programs beginning in early childhood and extending through college graduation. Piloting local family engagement centers that serve the unique needs of families in local communities. During the last reauthorization of ESEA, Congress determined a critical need for direct services for families, which would be provided by community-based organizations. In response, Congress added a funding trigger that would establish Local Family Information Centers if PIRC funding reached $50 million. Because this threshold was never met, these local services have not been implemented to remove barriers to family engagement in education. The FSCE Working Group recommends that ESEA include a local family engagement demonstration program that provides direct services, such as leadership training and family literacy, to families and removes barriers to family engagement. Community-based organizations know the needs and strengths of local families and can most effectively engage and support parents' involvement in their local school and neighborhood. Codify a research-based definition of and standards for effective family engagement. Codifying standards for effective family engagement policy and practice will provide schools and districts with a robust picture of what effective family engagement looks like in practice. Fifteen States have already adopted the National Parent Teacher Association's research-based Standards for Family-School Partnerships into law or State policy as guiding principles for schools and districts to use when developing their strategies for family engagement. These standards describe conditions that should be in place in every school, to provide an essential foundation for a high-achieving learning environment. 1. Welcoming All Families into the School Community: Families are active participants in the life of the school, and feel welcomed, valued, and connected to each other, to school staff, and to what students are learning and doing in class. 2. Communicating Effectively: Families and school staff engage in regular, two-way, and meaningful communication about student learning. 3. Supporting Student Success: Families and school staff continuously collaborate to support students' learning and healthy development both at home and at school, and have regular opportunities to strengthen their knowledge and skills to do so effectively. 4. Speaking Up for Every Child: Families are empowered to be advocates for their own and other children, to ensure that students are treated fairly and have access to learning opportunities that will support their success. 5. Sharing Power: Families and school staff are equal partners in decisions that affect children and families and together inform, influence, and create policies, practices, and programs. 6. Collaborating with Community: Families and school staff collaborate with community members to connect students, families, and staff to expanded learning opportunities, community services, and civic participation.\13\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \13\ National PTA. National Standards, Goals and Indicators for Family-School Partnership, 2008. http://www.pta.org/Documents/ National_Standards_Assessment_Guide.pdf. Kentucky is the first State to adopt and codify State standards on family and community engagement. Developed by the Commissioner's Parent Advisory Council (CPAC), these State standards for family engagement align with the State's academic standards, and describe what practice looks like at the novice, apprentice, proficient and distinguished levels. (National PTA drew on these standards to develop their national standards.) Schools and districts in Kentucky use these standards to guide their school improvement plans and link parent involvement strategies to student achievement. When schools fail to improve student test scores 2 years in a row, they undergo a scholastic audit performed by a team appointed by the State education agency. The audit protocol includes a review of school practices to engage families in improving student achievement, based on the State standards.\14\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \14\ Commissioner's Parent Advisory Council, The Missing Piece of the Proficiency Puzzle: Recommendations for Involving families and community in improving student achievement (Frankfurt, KY: Kentucky Department of Education, 2007) www.education.ky.gov/NR/rdonlyres/ 45597738-F31B-4333-9BB9-34255F02BC6D/0/PACtheMissingPiecev2.pdf 5. Strengthen Federal support and coordination of cradle to career family engagement strategies and initiatives, including a robust --------------------------------------------------------------------------- Federal research agenda. Support a family engagement research and evaluation agenda. Develop a research agenda that uses rigorous methodology to identify evidence-based and promising practices that engage families to raise student achievement. In addition, research on promising school reform practices, including school turnarounds, should include metrics for family engagement practices and their effects. With the United States trailing other industrialized countries in college and career readiness, it is clear that schools and teachers cannot close the achievement gap alone. We must provide resources and leadership for schools, districts, and States to scale-up best practices and build local capacity to partner with parents to raise student achievement. Ensure equity and opportunity for all students by extending family engagement to young people who are Native American, homeless, or in the juvenile justice and foster care system. It is critical to extend family engagement to all young people, especially those in high-risk situations such as the juvenile justice and foster care systems where traditionally poor transition and discharge planning leads to lower educational outcomes for students. Engage families in ensuring a positive school climate and phasing out punitive discipline policies such as zero tolerance that keep students out of school and prevent them from learning. Engage families in assessing school climate and developing and implementing strategies to improve school climate, school discipline policies, school safety, and student physical and mental health and well-being. This includes providing incentives to phase-out punitive school suspension and zero tolerance policies and to support proven classroom-based behavioral interventions like Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS). Research has shown that school districts' use of ``zero tolerance'' policies has led to the near doubling of students suspended from school annually, increasing from 1.7 million to 3.1 million per year, between 1974 and 2003.\15\ Parents are key stakeholders in determining the comprehensive needs of students and their community, and should be engaged in developing strength-based interventions that improve student achievement, motivation, attendance, safety, and behavior. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \15\ Losen, D. and Wald, J. (May 2003). Defining and Redirecting a School-to-Prison Pipeline: Framing Paper for the School to Prison Pipeline Research Conference. The Civil Rights Project at Harvard. Encourage the replication of best practices and innovations in the field by requiring the Government Accountability Office to produce a report on the current status, barriers, and successes in State and district implementation of family engagement --------------------------------------------------------------------------- strategies. Over the last several years, many superintendents, principals, and teachers have approached members of the Working Group asking for guidance on how to use funds on strategies that research shows work. Providing them with this information encourages local solutions and flexibility by highlighting a number of successful strategies as well as identifying States, schools, and districts in need of more support. Support the development of research-based metrics for assessing effective family engagement in schools and their impact on improving student achievement. Require the Secretary of Education to appoint a committee of leading researchers and expert practitioners to develop metrics that assess the impact of family engagement strategies on student achievement. These metrics should be aligned with State and district assessment systems of educational programs and policies, including surveys for the Safe, Healthy, and Successful Students Program, to provide additional support to districts and schools that demonstrate a need to strengthen family engagement. Reduce duplication and fragmentation, and elevate family engagement in education by establishing dedicated staff for integrating family engagement initiatives within the U.S. Department of Education and across Federal agencies. Family, school, and community engagement should be a cross-cutting priority for all ESEA programs. A high level of coordination within the Department and across Federal agencies could ensure that educators, families, and community organizations have the resources and incentives to develop integrated, systemic, and sustained family and community engagement strategies that drive student achievement and school reform. Once again, I would like to thank the committee and the other panelists here today for their commitment to our country's children. We owe it to our children to work together--parents, teachers, principals, and community and business leaders--to ensure that all students have every opportunity to be successful in school and through life. Preparing America's students for college and career is imperative not only for our own children's future, but also for the future of our Nation. attachments
The Chairman. Thank you very much, Ms. Henderson. Now, to close out, before we open it up for general discussion, Dan Cardinali, president of Communities In Schools. Dan. STATEMENT OF DANIEL J. CARDINALI, PRESIDENT, COMMUNITIES IN SCHOOLS, ARLINGTON, VA Mr. Cardinali. Thank you, Senator Harkin. Thank you to the committee and to you particularly for your ongoing support to Communities In Schools and the students that we serve. I would like to make a point that I think is central to what we just heard, which is we have an enormous number of insights about how to improve the way young people achieve academically. I think at the heart of the problem is the fact that we don't have an intentional strategy often to integrate them and align them with the other sets of school reform strategies. We hear an enormous amount about the importance of teacher quality and data systems and high standards, which we think are incredibly important. A holistic approach to a child takes those sets of resources of afterschool programming, mentoring and libraries and align them and integrate intentionally such that the principal and teachers have a whole bucket of resources as they are trying to educate children. The question is, can you, in fact, effectively, sustainably, and at scale integrate resources and produce academic outcomes? I want to offer Communities In Schools up as an example of being able to actually do that. What is the effectiveness of it? What is the data? We are just finishing a 5-year, third-party evaluation of our organization by ICF International, which runs a ``what works'' clearing house. And the data is very clear. When you integrate community resources in alignment with school improvement, you see lower dropout rates, improved graduation rates, improved math and reading proficiency scores at the fourth and eighth grade level. More importantly, you can look at two match comparison schools that are getting the same sets of resources. One of which is integrating it with an individual trained to do this with teachers and principals and one that is not. The one that has the integrator statistically outperforms the school that has the same sets of resources that are not being integrated. There is very clear evidence that integration of community resources is an effective school reform strategy. Not a silver bullet, must be put in alignment with other sets of reforms. Two, is it sustainable? CIS, Communities In Schools, has been working for 33 years. We started with 100 kids in Atlanta, GA, in one school, and now we are in 3,300 schools, working with 1.3 million young people and over 200,000 parents or guardians across the United States. We know that school systems, local philanthropic communities, as well as municipal and public school systems want CIS. There is more demand than we possibly can meet right now--there is more demand than we have supply. The final point I want to make is about scalability. In order for good education reform--integrated student services, in this case--to be effective, it must be able to work in urban, rural, and suburban communities across America. I am happy to say that our network is in 26 States and the District of Columbia. Half of our affiliates are in rural communities. Half are in suburban and urban. There is an effective way for us to meet the needs of whatever the presenting challenges kids have, and then be able to resource them by using the services available in that community. I would like to end by simply encouraging the committee to support the Keeping Parents and Communities Engaged Act. It is an effective strategy that we hope to get integrated into the reauthorization of ESEA that would help support this integration of the terrific work we have heard this morning. Thank you. [The prepared statement of Mr. Cardinali follows:] Prepared Statement of Daniel J. Cardinali summary An introduction to Communities In Schools will include background on the organization and demographics of the people we serve. The importance of integrated student services and comprehensive supports as they relate to school reform and improvement proposals will be outlined. This includes the adverse consequences on other reform efforts if integrated student services are not included. Mr. Cardinali will provide an overview of the impact of integrated student services on improving academic performance, particularly among students with the greatest need. The testimony will also mention the results of an independent evaluation of the Communities In Schools Model, a description of the financial savings associated with the model, and the flexibility and mobility of the model to cover diverse communities. The testimony will close with the request for the inclusion of S. 1411, the Keeping Parents and Communities Engaged (Keeping Pace) Act in the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. This is the legislative vehicle that creates incentives for schools to work with communities and other stakeholders to provide integrated student services as well as supporting other parental engagement and community engagement strategies. ______ Chairman Harkin, Ranking Minority Member Enzi and members of the committee, thank you very much for convening this panel to discuss issues critical to our Nation's future and for providing me an opportunity to testify today. Chairman Harkin, I would like to extend a special thanks to you for your strong support and leadership of our students over the years. My name is Daniel Cardinali and I am president of Communities In Schools. We are a national organization of 57,000 volunteers and 5,000 professional staff working together to provide integrated student services to more than 1.3 million students in 3,300 schools and support to nearly 200,000 parents or guardians. Ninety-six percent of our students are eligible for free and reduced-price lunch and more than 80 percent are students of color. Each year Communities In Schools lowers dropout rates and increases graduation rates. About 80 percent of the students we serve demonstrate academic improvement. This is an extraordinary time to be in education. We commend the committee, the Congress and the Administration for their initiatives to support schools and your efforts to drive the meaningful reforms essential to strengthening our education system. Ensuring that highly qualified teachers teach to high standards and sharing high expectations with students will prove critical to providing students with a globally competitive education. We also believe that measuring student progress with effective assessments and improved data systems, and enabling educators to identify troubling trends before they become serious challenges will provide real-time and evidence-based interventions to keep all students academically proficient. We firmly believe that these strategies are absolutely essential to improving public education and closing the achievement gap. However, our 33 years of experience also tells us that these reform efforts alone are insufficient. In order to achieve the full benefits of education reform, benefits essential to our students and Nation, we must include integrated student services as an integral part of these efforts. To this end we support the Keeping Parents and Communities Engaged or Keeping PACE Act that would support integrated student services and ensure its inclusion alongside these other important reform strategies. We must position students to achieve success. In public education, this means we must adopt a holistic view regarding the needs of students. Dropout risk factors can be present even before a student walks through the school door. If students are hungry, suffering from chronic (and preventable) health challenges, if students are worried about their personal safety, if students have no one to encourage them to aspire to post-secondary education and walk with them through the myriad challenges--especially those challenges faced by poor children in America on a daily basis--then even the best teachers using a terrific curriculum and the best data systems will not be successful unless there is a system in place to address these needs. Teachers cannot attend to these challenges nor should they be expected to do so. Quite simply teachers are professionals, not trained to address these needs and efforts to do so only serve to distract them from the critical roles they play. It is my belief that even the most effective school reform efforts can fall short because they fail to include a comprehensive student support strategy. Across the country there are a number of effective organizations that provide student support services. However, my comments will focus on the work of Communities In Schools as an effective, sustainable and scalable national example of a successful integrated student support model. After 33 years, Communities In Schools knows that integrating student services will ensure children are ready for that effective teacher, so that even the most economically challenged students in America have a shot at the American Dream. The evidence supports this conclusion. This year, Communities In Schools is completing a 5-year independent evaluation of its integrated student services model. ICF International, the esteemed research organization that manages the evidence reviews for the dropout prevention section of Department of Education's What Works Clearinghouse, conducted an analysis of our integrated student service programs. The results are very compelling: according to ICF, these programs reduce the dropout rate, increase graduation rates, and increase 4th and 8th grade math and reading proficiency scores. It is important to reiterate that these results are drawn from many of the poorest schools in America. As an organization, Communities in Schools has grown its work from serving 100 students in one school to serving more than 1.3 million students in 3,300 schools, because integrated student services programs work and remain affordable to schools and communities. Over the long term, integrated student services generate substantial savings. With an average cost of less than $200 per student, covering a student from K- 12 would cost $2,600. Compare that to the roughly $260,000 a high school dropout is estimated to cost society in the form of lost income and taxes, higher use of social services and increased likelihood of criminal justice costs. Our model adapts effectively to serve a wide range of communities in America. Operating in thousands of rural and urban school districts alike, CIS demonstrates that integrated student services is a transferable school reform strategy. As the committee considers the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, we encourage you to include integrated student services as an essential element of these reforms. The Federal Government has a long history of driving effective reform at the State and local levels, often seeking to expand educational opportunities for some of our most vulnerable students. Including the Keeping PACE Act as part of the reauthorization is the next most important step in this evolution. By aligning integrated student services with school improvement, turnaround and reform strategies we will ensure that the American Dream remains within reach for our Nation's poorest youth. The Keeping PACE Act has been co-sponsored by a group of 25 legislators and endorsed by 40 leading education, health and community organizations, all of whom have a stake in the success of our Nation's young people. As you work to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, we urge you to include comprehensive services as an element of school transformation in order to achieve the objectives of that landmark legislation and ensure every child has equal access to an excellent education. Thank you for your time and I look forward to answering any of your questions. The Chairman. Mr. Cardinali, thank you. Thank you all very, very much for being here and not only for your testimonies, but for so many years of your involvement in addressing the needs of the whole student. And speaking of students, I see that Senator Dodd brought his two children here today. I just remembered, today is Bring Your Daughter to Work Day. I used to bring mine, but now they are too old. [Laughter.] My granddaughter is only 18 months. She is a little young for this. Grace and Christina, welcome. Senator Dodd. Probably not a good idea, I realized when I did this, to bring them into a room on elementary and secondary education, and they are skipping school today. This is really-- -- [Laughter.] Probably should have taken them to a financial reform regulation hearing. [Laughter.] It is being covered on C-SPAN, too. I am in trouble. But it is a good education process. I am listening carefully to what you are saying, having Christina, who goes to the Peabody School, a public school here in Washington. Her sister Grace goes to the Hyde School, a public school in the District, and both are very good students. I am delighted to have them here. The Chairman. And she is keeping diligent notes on what you are saying. [Laughter.] Well, listen, thank you again. I don't see any cards up. So I will turn mine up. In reading your testimonies last night and then listening to you this morning, the one thing that hits me is that, No. 1, we are talking about adding on different things to these students' responsibilities--things like longer school days. Ms. Jefferies was talking about adding 650 hours. Others were talking about longer school days. Mr. Schwarz, you talked about longer school years. It seems to me that you have to be careful about how you add time and in a way that will keep students interested. We know the attention span of young people. How do you keep them interested, and how do you deal with the students that are at the top end of learning, the AP kids that are very bright? How do you keep them interested without segregating them out into separate schools? We used to call them centers. Kids would go to centers and stuff like that. How do you do that? And second, if you are going to add all this stuff on, doesn't this require more personnel? I mean, can you ask a teacher, who is currently putting in 10 hours a day to put in 16 hours a day? Can you say, ``you are now working 9 months, and then you go to professional development in the summer. Now you have to put in 11 months, and that extra month you have, you have participation in professional development. You don't get a vacation. You don't get time off for personal development?'' It seems like as you add all this stuff on, you are going to have to add more staff, counselors, mentors, and librarians. I know the number of librarians in Iowa were reduced this year and last year. How do we accomplish all of this? Adding more people, and keeping kids interested? How do we prepare instructors and staff to work with them for a longer day and a longer school year? Ms. Pittman, you have your card up. Ms. Pittman. I think you are asking a very important question, and it is critical as we recognize the need to be intentional about making sure that young people have more learning opportunities during more of their waking hours that we not be bureaucratic about it. We have an opportunity to make this not the Elementary and Secondary Schools Act, but the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, and to have it live up to its name. Because education doesn't just happen in the school. Mr. Cardinali's comment about integrating the resources is so critical. The first thing that we really have to do, and this is one of the things that our organization does, is to help communities map the resources that exist that can be applied toward learning in school and out. You get those folks to the table and get them organized to have a shared commitment to fill that pipe, insulate that pipe, which doesn't mean that schools have to do it all. We often hear schools can't do it all. Then when we are challenged with these kind of ideas like extend the learning day, we automatically fall back on, well, schools need to do it. We know that we have a rich, rich array of organizations from nonprofits organizations to the faith community, to business community, to libraries and museums, our rec departments, that are really ready to take on this role. We haven't been intentional about first adding up the pieces that we have, seeing where they fall across the neighborhoods, and then deciding to bring them together to make a plan for how to do this. Where we see this happening so that the school really is being the central coordinator of those resources, but not assuming that it is its sole responsibility to do that is where we see the most progress. The Chairman. Thank you. I want to call on Mr. Schwarz, and then I am going to go to Senator Bennet. Mr. Schwarz. Mr. Schwarz. Thank you for raising the question. It is an important one, and I think the worst thing we could do is take a failing school with a disengaged kid and add more of the same. And that has been tried. A number of districts have just extended the day by an hour or two with the same teachers, using the same techniques. The research is in. It is not working. What can be done, though, in an expanded learning time environment and can be done well, is to use the extra time as a lever for reform in the whole day. It does need to be, what we have been referring to as a ``second shift'' of educators. Some of them are AmeriCorps members, recent college graduates, and community members serving as mentors, tutors, and trainers of the young kids. I think an afterschool or expanded learning time approach that adds those 3 or 4 hours of additional learning, but makes it different. It has to be hands-on, interesting, fun, engaging, get the kids out doing field trips to science museums and colleges, and doing the kind of things that have been too often squeezed out of the regular school day, adding back in arts, music, athletics, apprenticeships. If you do that, you are going to have a chance for kids to get engaged in learning, get excited about learning. You are going to give the teachers in the school more training opportunities. We see our regular school day teachers doing training alongside our AmeriCorps teaching fellows, and both of them learning a great deal. Then we bring into the mix scientists and other members of the community that can bring learning alive in powerful ways as well. The Chairman. Before I call on Senator Bennet, I am just going to say that one of the things I have been focused on for a long time is the lack of any physical exercise. I didn't say physical education. I always say physical exercise for kids in school because it is important for them to be active. You know, when I was a kid we had an hour of physical exercise a day. We had 15 minutes in the morning, 15 in the afternoon, and a half hour at lunch. You had 1 hour a day, when you had to go outside, run around, do things, get exercise. Kids need to burn off energy. How do you integrate physical exercise into the day also? Senator Bennet. Statement of Senator Bennet Senator Bennet. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I want to join Jack Reed and say welcome to Harris Wofford, who is here today, and a reminder to me, seeing Harris, the embodiment of an entire generation's commitment to civil rights in this country. I think that is really, to me, what these hearings ought to be about. When you hear Ms. Pittman cite the statistics that she did that 3 in 10 seniors in this country, high school seniors are college ready, that is a civil rights issue, in my view. When 4 in 10 seniors or, I guess, 12th graders are work ready, that is a civil rights issue, I think. That comes after the 50 percent dropout rate that we are seeing in America's cities all across the United States. Because Geoffrey Canada is here and because I know of the work that he has done, I am going to ask him a very unfair question. Chancellor Klein was here last week or the week before, and I don't think he would mind. If you were in charge, based on what you have seen, what would you do to begin to change those profoundly unjust outcomes for America's children? Mr. Canada. Thank you, Senator Bennet, and I think you know from conversations how absolutely upset I am at the State of American education for huge numbers of our children. I happen to think it is a national security issue. I don't think we are going to stay competitive. I think that we have countries like China and India, which are intentionally outworking us in terms of building the infrastructure for education. One of the first things I would do, and this would be--I know that Senator Dodd is probably coming from or going to some hearings on the economic crisis. I would love to have in front of me and in front of America the people who are responsible for holding up a system that has failed our children and making it so difficult--for those of us who want to bring change--to bring change to that system. I think that needs to be exposed to the entire country, that when you begin to ask yourself why is it so difficult for us to do basic changes--to change the school day, to change the school year, to air condition our schools so they can be used in the summertime--you run into the interests of adults, powerful interests. When you look at the food and the nutrition in schools and why is it so terrible, you run into the interests of adults. I think that as a country, we have focused on other issues to the detriment of our children. If I had the authority, I would be having hearings. I would be exposing, I think, what--you see a place like Detroit, 3 percent of the children in the fourth grade on grade level. You just say how can America sustain itself as a world power if we are allowing huge numbers of our--and who is responsible? And we have got to make some people responsible for that. So I am sorry. See, you knew you were going to get me going. [Laughter.] I said I wasn't going to get in trouble. But you know that, and I know Senator Dodd and some of the other folks who know me, Senator Franken, know that I think this is a real crisis in this country. I think that on both sides of the aisle, we have been unwilling to point to the issues where the unions come first, the issues where big business comes first, and our children come last. We can't afford to do that in this country any longer, in my opinion. And I think it is time to name names and point fingers and really bring some change to this system in a way that is going to make a lasting change. Sorry. I didn't mean to go on that long, but I got going. The Chairman. If you don't mind, I will call on Clare Struck and then Ms. Jefferies, and then I will go to Senator Dodd. Is that fair enough? Senator Dodd. Yes, sure. The Chairman. OK. Ms. Struck. Ms. Struck. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. When you talked about how to keep the kids engaged and interested, something that we have tried just recently this year at Price Lab School is project-based learning through J- term, and we are preparing now for our May term courses. The classrooms really came alive with these mini-type week-long courses where the students got to choose their own topic or choose from a list of topics, where they were actively engaged in small groups. Our high school students, some of them did talk radio shows. Some of them were in experimental string theory. Our middle school students did a project on empathy, and they developed video vignettes on how to teach others about empathy and what to do if you see someone who is not being empathetic, who is bullying, who is harassing, or who is hurting other kids. They were quite powerful. Our elementary students--we had a garage sale at our school, and the students voted on what did they want to do with the profits they made? This was shortly after the devastation in Haiti, and they decided to give their money to the American Red Cross for Haiti. So much success. When it was time for the students to go to their mini courses, to their J-term, May term, literally, the exuberance was in the hallways. Also, we tied these to our Iowa core curriculum so they can be standard-based. One other point I would like to make is, we do need to get outside. We need to move. Our children need to move. Wellness is really important, not competition and PE. At Price Lab School, I have been there 27 years, and we have had daily PE. Our juniors and seniors have a healthy, active lifestyle where they begin to monitor their own time. They don't go to a regular PE course. Those are some suggestions that I would like to make in response to your questions. Thank you. The Chairman. Are you familiar with what Rick Schupbach has done at Grundy Center? Ms. Struck. Yes. Yes, in fact, our PE teacher, our former PE teacher Lori Smith has worked closely with him with that. The Chairman. Ms. Jefferies, and then I will go to Senator Dodd. Ms. Jefferies. Thank you so much, Senator Harkin. You asked what do you do? Is it too much time to ask of students? It is a question I get a lot when I bring guests to our centers, and they ask our scholars, ``What would you be doing if you weren't here? Isn't this too much?'' Time and time again, our scholars say, ``I would be bored. I would be at home, playing video games. My parents wouldn't be there. I would be bored.'' And just because they would be bored without our programs doesn't mean that they need to be forced into our programs. They need to have choices, and I think it is important to have options afterschool and in the summer and make those options really engaging. It was--coincidentally, when I got the call about this hearing last week, I was actually on a field trip with our scholars at the Four Seasons in Georgetown, and it was a day that the schools were closed, DC Emancipation Day. Our scholars were out there planting the vegetable garden for Bourbon Steak Restaurant, and then they learned all about healthy eating, and they had a farm-fresh meal. The executive chef taught them about it. They went home with herb gardens. They learned about things they never would have learned normally. It is very important not only to pique an interest in science, but also to teach them about nutrition and health. And we have incorporated physical education, which you also raised, into our programs. Once every day for an hour, they have opportunities to be physically active. We do general sports, but then we also do hip-hop dance and martial arts and all different kinds of things. The Chairman. The other part of my question was also about personnel, teachers, counselors and other support staff. How many more personnel do we need? Ms. Jefferies. Yes. The Chairman. I am sorry, I said Senator Dodd. I meant Senator Franken next because you had your card up. Statement of Senator Franken Senator Franken. Thank you. I noted in your written testimony, Mr. Canada, you talked about when you finished with it, sort of the need to cultivate a culture of success rooted in passion, accountability, leadership, and teamwork. I was inspired by that, and I would urge all of us who have this enormous responsibility to reauthorize this act, all of us on this committee to work in a culture rooted in passion, accountability, leadership, and teamwork. I share Senator Bennet's and your passion and outrage at what we have now. This is kind of a question for everybody, and I am sorry to do that because maybe that is not the best way this works. I want to talk about return on investment. I want to ask a question about return on investment. What I see is things like--take Ms. Struck--school counselors. Minnesota, we have a ratio of 800 kids for each school counselor. OK? That is an actual funding issue, right? I want to extend school lunch, free school lunch to kids from 130 to 185 percent of poverty. A lot of them, it costs 40 cents for lunch for the reduced lunch. A lot of parents run out of money, and kids don't have lunch or they have a cheese sandwich. Or they don't--they are embarrassed to have a cheese sandwich. So they don't have lunch. Kids can't learn if they don't have good, healthy food. We should be giving these kids breakfast and good, healthy breakfasts and good, healthy lunches. Sometimes they said, ``well, we need these soda machines in there so that we can pay for an afterschool program.'' All of you, so many of you have talked about this not being about school, it is about being from birth to when you graduate, meaning early childhood. We know what the return on investment is on early childhood. We reap. It is either do that or send them to prison at the end of the day for $50,000 a year. Afterschool programs, I see schools in Minnesota cutting the afterschool programs, cutting the arts, cutting athletics because they don't have the funding. Many of you talked about extending the hours of learning and the number of days. These schools can't pay for it because of special ed. They have to pay for special ed. I guess my question is, if we really care about our finances, our fiscal shape in this country, what is the best investment for our children and our grandchildren? Anybody want to deal with that? Mr. Canada. Mr. Canada. Thank you, Senator. Look, I am a real believer that the Nation's children are going to really be in trouble because of the States' budget issues that every State that I know of is facing right now. They are cutting not the fat anymore. I think they are cutting into the muscle when it comes to education, and I just think that we have missed an opportunity to really rethink the contract that America has to have with its schools and its educators. I think you are right about return on investment. There are a lot of programs that, quite honestly, aren't very good, right? A lot of them keep getting funded, and they are just not doing the job. We should get rid of those programs. They really should be defunded, and that is very tough to do. The taxpayer, I think, is willing to invest in their children if they believe there is a return, if it is just not going to be another dollar that doesn't produce an impact. Senator Franken. That would be very helpful to us to know what to cut, so that we can do the things that work. Mr. Canada. I just think that that is one of the--that a lot of us here are looking at this issue of outcomes, and can you really demonstrate that the investment is paying off in a way that is real? And I think that is important. But I think you raise a larger question that I would just like to take 10 seconds. Are we investing enough in our children in this Nation? I think the answer is no. I think that there are huge areas in this country that all the children need to be in a full-day early education program if they are going to be able to be competitive. We just don't have the support, and we don't have the funding for it. Afterschools when parents are working and kids have no one at home, afterschool programs aren't a luxury. They are a necessity for those young people. There is not a funding source for that kind of a situation. I think that we have got to hold those of us in this business accountable for results, but we also have to be willing to pay for what we would consider realistic investment. One counselor to 800 kids is a joke. That is not going to produce the kind of support young people need, right? We are probably not even going to be able to hold onto that with the State budgets being in the condition they are in. I just think that, as a Nation, we have got to really do a real investment in education to support things broadly across this country. We have got to hold people accountable. Senator Franken. Would anybody care to just say one program that doesn't work, or would you like to submit that in writing to us? [Laughter.] Mr. Canada. I will tell you the famous one that people quote all the time, and some people have heard that. I don't know that it is publicly funded, but I have just heard that the DARE program is a program that pretty clear it doesn't produce the kind of results that--yet it is funded all over the country. I am sure the police forces will all be coming after me for making that statement. [Laughter.] But I think you are raising the right question. There are other ones, and we have not been transparent, those of us in the business, right, about putting those programs on the table. And we need to do that. The Chairman. Yes, we have another one called Abstinence Only. [Laughter.] If you want to get into things that we spend a lot of money on which we have data that show that doesn't work. Ms. Greene had hers up, and then Senator Dodd. Ms. Green, Senator Dodd, and then I will go to Senator Hagan. Ms. Greene. Thank you. There have been a few questions on the table I would like to address. First of all, you asked about student interest in lengthening the day. I would like to talk about how our libraries do that. In our libraries, we have inquiry-based learning. That is, what is the student connected to? What are they interested in learning about that creates the passion for their learning? Libraries help foster the habits of mind that will have students want to go beyond the school day to continue to learn. Our libraries are often open before and afterschool for children to have access to. Our libraries have a Web presence, which makes materials available 24/7 through databases and online resources. I know myself, personally, have worked on summer reading programs where I have blogged all summer on our Rhode Island Children's Book Award, encouraging student reading and having our students respond online to what they are reading and having contact with me all summer long. We also have the students engaged because they are creating knowledge. They are creating Wikis and blogs, video productions. I have parents who help me in the library all the time. Afterschool, I have students wanting to stay late to create videos with me. They want to be there. And through parent help and with my working with them, they are able to do those things that they are interested in. We have also talked about unjust outcomes. Certainly, all children deserve equal access to library and library instruction. And as far as return on investment, my background before I was a school librarian, I was in accounting. I certainly understand the need for a balanced budget. I can tell you our school libraries are a very wise investment. In Rhode Island, 40 percent of our students have access to a consortium of school libraries that share materials. That means we might have a few thousand books in our individual libraries, but through sharing, our students have access to over a million. But only 40 percent of our schools are able to afford to take part in that at this time. The Chairman. Senator Dodd and then Dr. Sugai, followed by Senator Reed and then Senator Hagan. Senator Dodd. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. Statement of Senator Dodd Let me echo Michael Bennet's comments about Harris Wofford. Harris, I don't know if you are still here or not back there? The Chairman. Yes, he is right there. Senator Dodd. Harris, it is wonderful to see you, and again, I underscore the points. Harris and I worked together as former Peace Corps volunteers. Harris was present at the creation of these programs going back decades ago. It is wonderful to see you in the room. Thank you, once again, for being here. Dr. Sugai, I appreciate your being here. I would be remiss if I didn't recognize a constituent. He does a wonderful job at the University of Connecticut, working in special education from classroom teachers to lending authorities and the whole positive behavioral support system. We thank you for your work. I want to pick up on two things. As my colleagues all know, I am winding down here with a few months left of serving in the U.S. Senate. Having arrived here the same day with the fellow here to my right a few years ago. I spent a lot of time and started the Children's Caucus with Arlen Specter in the Senate. My first real legislative efforts were the Child Care and Development Block Grant Program, beginning some 20 years ago. I wrote the Family and Medical Leave Act, which took 7 years, several vetoes. Tom Harkin was my great ally in that effort. Head Start programs, infant screening. All of this collaborative notion, I think, Ms. Pittman, you were absolutely correct. Utilizing other institutions within a community, mapping them out, determining what is there and how to access them rather than just the school-centric focus. I want to raise the question that has been raised by Mr. Canada and you, Ms. Henderson--did I pronounce your name correctly? It is, yes. Anne Henderson. Because I happen to agree with the notion that by the age of 3, the achievement gap is already there. So, we have to prioritize. We can't do everything, obviously. I think Al was correct, and so we have to be selective. But I think there is a general understanding and agreement that how a child begins those early days, long before they end up in any of your classrooms or doing anything else, so much has already been pre-determined. Whether or not you have a great afterschool program or a very creative system that gives them all sorts of access to wonderful new things that weren't available even a generation ago, if you don't begin right, nothing else works anyway. So if you have to prioritize, you have got to start, it seems to me, at the very foundation of all of this. That begins with parents and having the ability, to go to your point, Mr. Canada, that we have tried over the years--by the way, family and medical leave is to deal with illnesses or problems of parents and children. I have tried for years to get 24 hours a year so that a parent could be away from work without losing their job if they could go to a PTA meeting, attend a sporting event, just that connection. I would like you to talk about this because if, in fact, Mr. Canada is correct--and I believe he is--and I would like to hear from other than Mr. Canada, Ms. Henderson, how you respond to this, as teachers and as educators, this notion of 0 to 3, that family involvement, that beginning process here. How that child starts their education and the ability to make a difference there, and then how that relates to these other questions. If anyone wants to comment, I would be very interested in hearing your thoughts. If I had to prioritize, that is where I have always tried to focus--the beginning. Getting that right doesn't mean you are going to get everything else right. But if you get that wrong, it doesn't make any difference what you do on the other end. That achievement gap--I shouldn't say it doesn't make any difference, but it is harder, much harder. The Chairman. I might just add--I raised with Secretary Duncan the other day and with others on numerous occasions, that maybe, just maybe, we ought to think about redefining elementary education. Education begins at birth, not when children show up in your schools. Who wants to respond to Senator Dodd? Senator Dodd. How do we incorporate that in ESEA, if you can? I mean, can we do that? The Chairman. I don't know. I am throwing that out there. Who wants to respond to Senator Dodd? Ms. Pittman. I will jump in. I would be happy to start. I think that the issue of early investment is absolutely critical. I mean, the research has been in for a long time on the importance of not just preschool, but really those first 3 years. And so, parents as first teachers leading up to this, and so we have to do everything that we can on that side. We have seen a push for universal pre-K. We have seen pushing that back from age 4 to age 3. We have seen a progressive shift at the State level of having the formal education system back up to grab those early years because it is important. Equally important, we have seen much better partnerships between the early childhood community and schools and, on the other side, early childhood really defining themselves up to age 8. So you have that overlap. I would suggest, with the idea of focus, clearly, if we understand development, we have to start early. Everything that we know, including the studies now from Jim Heckman, who gave us the first data on the importance of investing in early childhood, is that we need early and sustained investment. As important as it is to start early, we can't forget about the other kids. But if we are going to get a good return on investment, every dollar that we put in, we have to figure out how we are going to sustain that investment. I would leave you with sort of a simple equation, which is I think quantity minus quality equals zero. What we have right now is an education structure that allows us to keep kids in shells of buildings that can hardly be called educational institutions. But they come in, and they sit there, and we feel OK about it. That is quantity. We are moving them into buildings. We really need a definition of quality education that is a holistic definition. If this is the panel to talk about the whole child, we really need this Elementary and Secondary Education Act to back up and define what quality education is from birth through young adulthood that addresses academic, civic, social competencies, basic health and exercise issues, that understands that education doesn't just happen in the school. Dan Domenech, the president of the American Association of School Administrators, has challenged superintendents to get over what he calls the ``edifice complex,'' the idea that everything happens inside the building. I do think we have the partners. They are not evenly distributed in all neighborhoods, but we can find them and begin to invest in them. If we have a definition of quality that is unrelenting, not down to the name of the program, because for every branded program, I can tell you some of them are good and some of them are bad, even under a brand name. We need standards for quality that we come in and look at building by building, organization by organization, and then we either ask them to improve or get out of Dodge. The Chairman. Does anyone else really want to weigh in? Mr. Canada. Can I just weigh--and I know he asked for someone other than me. But, Senator, there are two things. One, one of the things you may not know is I am the chairman of the Children's Defense Fund board, and all of us owe you and this Nation a debt of gratitude. We are very aware of your leadership around these issues of education. I am going to speak on behalf of all of the other members in saying one of the saddest days of my, I think, career will be the day that you are no longer Senator from Connecticut. I just wanted to thank you for all that you have done for children in this Nation and to say that I think Karen is right on this issue. I call it the ``superhero bit.'' You wait until kids are 12 and are 4 years behind, and then you have to turn into a superhero to save them. Where you knew that very kid--we all know where these kids are. We know where they are right now. Why don't we intervene early to make sure these kids start life off on even footing? I think it has been a mistake. I think we have separated the education arena as if learning doesn't start from birth, which it does, and that these kids don't start falling behind from birth, which they do. Then you have got to connect it. It has to be connected to strong programs. Otherwise, it is not going to work. I think that is something that we have to continue to push. The one thing that I will say and what I pushed the Secretary of Education on with Promise Neighborhoods was that we keep a pool of money that is able to do that very thing. Connect early with elementary, with middle and high school so you really can get that pipeline all the way through, which is what I think we believe it really takes. I agree with you, and I agree that Karen is right. We have got to sustain that effort. The Chairman. Mr. Cardinali, do you want to respond to that? Mr. Cardinali. Just a simple kind of almost philosophical point because I agree so much with Karen and Geoff. Often when we get asked this question when we are out in communities, I turn the question back and say, as parents, when are you going to invest most in your child? When they are 3 and then abandon them? Or when they are 7 and then say, ``good, good luck?'' We know that, in fact, kids from when they are born to probably when they are 21, 25, 28 now, need some form of ongoing support, love, set of resources, abilities to expand their horizons, opportunities when they fall down that someone picks them up, whether it is their health or trouble in school. The question, I think, is for this community in the United States, are we committed to our children the way a parent is committed to his or her child? If that is the case, then I do believe in the system there are sufficient resources. The data is very clear. It looks like a U, right? When you are investing early on, you see pretty strong outcomes for young people. As the investment drops off, you hit the bottom, and then those that can somehow squeak through, the investment goes up. All of a sudden, they are doing quite well. I don't think it is rocket science. At this point, I think it is about public will, coupled with a kind of rigor of delivery and excellence that outputs simply are no longer good enough, that there have to be clear, measurable ways that we hold ourselves accountable as a community, the same way a parent knows that when she or he sends their child off to that school that is failing, it is intolerable and they figure out something to do. The Chairman. Does anybody else feel like they really want to say something about this? I want to turn to Senator Reed. I know he has to leave. We have a vote at noon. Ms. Henderson. I would just like to put in a plug for the approach they use in the child parent centers in Chicago, which start when children are 3 and would be better if it started early, but the idea of starting off well is half done. Promoting kindergarten readiness because that is a powerful predictor of how well children will do the rest of their time in school. These centers take kids when they are 3 and move them through the school until age 9, giving parents support all the way along, showing them ways to be engaged at home. You talked about what kind of investments we make and to be careful of our scarce resources. Investing in families to work with their children at home and guide them through our complicated school system and advocate for their kids when they are falling behind really pays off. For families who stay with the program the full 6 years, the graduation rate for their kids--these are low-income title I kids--is 85 percent, compared with about 50 percent for the rest of the system. The kids are much less likely to need special ed or disciplinary attention, and they are much more likely to pass and be promoted and go on. This is a modest investment, and it really pays off. The Chairman. Senator Reed. Senator Reed. Thanks, Tom. I want to thank you all for just tremendous insights, and particularly something that Karen said about how so much of learning now is happening outside the school building. And how so much is influencing the child outside the school building that we have to get outside the building and beyond the 9 o'clock to 5 o'clock. One of the aspects of this, particularly in this Internet age, is that children get lots of information, but not a lot of knowledge. I wonder how you are factoring all of this new technology in. One of the ironies is that even in the schools that lack good technology or up-to-date and robust libraries, many kids can still play video games--which I couldn't even do because I couldn't even turn these games on. It is this discrepancy that we should be addressing by harnessing these aspects for education, and we are not. I don't know if anyone wants to take a turn at responding-- Jamie? Ms. Greene. Absolutely. Thank you for the question. Using the Internet is certainly part of a library curriculum. We teach students Internet safety, how to access information, and perhaps more importantly is how to evaluate it, how to weed out through the millions of hits that they might get what is appropriate. My students gave me some thoughts. ``I also know how to search the web safely because of the library. We learn how to get a good Web site for information we could understand.'' We are starting it at the early grades in elementary school, scaffolding, so that when students get to be in middle and high school they are able to be effective users of information, understanding bias, understanding plagiarism and crediting their sources, creating new knowledge, new understandings from the information that they know how to evaluate and find and use and create. The Chairman. Mr. Canada, my staff informs me you have a flight to catch, that you have to leave pretty soon? Mr. Canada. I do, and I really apologize for that. Can I respond to Senator Reed? The Chairman. Yes. Mr. Canada. Because one of the things I have been beating up on the technology companies about is that I think this issue of technology is going to further separate children who are advantaged from children who are disadvantaged. Disadvantaged children tend to be end-users of video games and other things, but not the users of technology that advance educational research and aspirations. If we don't really make that technology available to young people so that they can have the power of the Internet at their fingertips for education, we are going to broaden the gap between poor children and children who are middle class. In thinking about technology--I was in West Virginia with Senator Rockefeller, and he was talking about the eRate and broadband and some of the things that have been pushed to try and get these schools to get technology and get accessible to technology. A lot of schools in Harlem, they are not even wired. You can't even bring it in there because the wiring system is so old that you can't wire the place. Well, maybe wireless will help. But here is a challenge. Central Park is wireless, right? So everybody who lives around Central Park can go on the Internet for free. In Harlem, the park, you can't do that. So here, the people who don't need free Internet service get it and the people who really need free Internet service don't have it, and I think that kind of discrepancy we have to change if we are going to make sure technology doesn't widen the disadvantaged group. I would just like to thank you, Chairman, for the opportunity and apologize to the Senators for having to leave. The Chairman. Very good. Thank you very much. Whenever you have to leave, you have to leave. Before I turn to others, Senator Bennet. Senator Bennet. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I appreciate it. Just to jump off of what Mr. Canada was talking about, one of the things that is staggering to me--and I have three little girls at home that are Chris's kids age--is that--and they don't like it when they hear me say this because they get angry about it. They really do. But the idea that we have $12 trillion of debt on our balance sheet, but we haven't been able to make somehow the kind of investments that everybody here is talking about in our human capital and the infrastructure in this country, really does make people scratch their head and say, ``What in the world is going on back here?'' That is a broader conversation that we need to have, I think, about the policy choices that we are making. With respect to public education generally--and again, bringing the perspective of a former superintendent here and trying to hold on to the agony of that--by the way, thank you all for working with our kids--the agony that so many of you go through because so many decisions we made were made because this stream of resources was coming in this place. This stream of resources was coming from this place, this stream from this place. It contorted the ability for people to deliver what they knew would be better for kids. I think about Chairman Dodd's point that he made about early childhood education. Maybe we don't have to decide here how all this money is spent. Maybe we can figure out ways of allowing local communities to make those judgments. Some places may decide they want to spend it on early childhood. Some might decide they want to spend it on libraries. Right now, everybody at the local level is wrestling with a diminished level of resources than what they had before and a bunch of rules and regulations that may or may not actually reflect outcomes for kids or be the best things for kids. I wonder if there is anybody here on the panel that either believes notionally that anything I have said is true or wrong? I was an urban school superintendent so you can't hurt my feelings. It has been beaten out of me a long time ago. Does this prompt any thoughts? Maybe I will start with Mr. Schwarz just because we haven't heard from him, and then whoever else. Mr. Schwarz. I want to thank you for the question and reinforce what several panelists have said around the need for greater investment overall in education. And yet ask us to think hard about why we are not getting bigger gains in places where we are investing healthy amounts of money today. I was in Newark, NJ, yesterday, where a Citizen School has been operating for several years. They are spending $19,000 to $20,000 per student in that district and not getting good results. I think part of it is because of the issues you raised of funding streams that are very specific, rules and regulations around them. I support the idea of finding more ways to open up funding to creative results-based programs and let those decisions be made at the local level. I think this is an effort to try to find ways in the afterschool and expanded learning time space to increase resources, but also increase flexibility and allow school systems and nonprofits to move forward with an expanded learning approach and/or an afterschool approach that fits their needs. I also think it may make sense in some areas to look at nationally administered competitive grant programs that can help identify the strongest programs, the most effective interventions, and try to scale them and do better research around them so that we can build the knowledge base around what is working, and we can have the capital to support high-quality initiatives that are getting results for kids and create through that better results that will get synergy and get momentum at the local level. Senator Reed. Ms. Pittman. Ms. Pittman. I think you are absolutely right, and I am glad you brought this up. It is clearly true in education, and it is true across all of our human services that, again, our insistence that once we identify a problem, we want to come up with a very specific solution and drill that down has led to enormous fragmentation. I am going to pull us out of education just for a second because these are the partners that we are talking about, and these are the resources that we are talking about, which are available at the Federal level. Right now there are over 300 Federal programs that address one of the problems that we were talking about today, spread across 13 different departments. You have fragmentation inside of education in terms of how we send education funding down. But if we are really looking for those partners and we are looking for those dollars and we are looking for those staff, we really need to do what we did almost two decades ago now, in the Clinton administration--I was the Director of the President's Crime Prevention Council and charged with bringing all those agencies together to identify the range of things we were looking at to prevent which was from dropout prevention to pregnancy, violence, etc. We picked 50 of those discretionary programs across the departments and looked at very specific ways to be able to give communities that flexibility, based on their being able to, first, map their resources, decide their goals, decide their needs, and come up with what for them was a comprehensive strategy that they thought was going to be effective and then be able to draw down on those resources. I think those are the kinds of things, as we are looking at reauthorizing this, that we can be very targeted about reaching out to suggest that the dollars that are in this act can be blended with dollars across other departments to get to this larger whole. I think communities are eager and ready for this, as we talk to them. The Chairman. Dr. Sugai, you put up your card, I wonder if you had a specific answer or response to that, and then we will go on. Dr. Sugai. I just had a couple of general comments about the discussion so far. The Elementary and Secondary Education Act is about schools and thinking about schools as being a very important social change agent, and how do we create schools that are actually going to be effective and efficient and so forth, as everybody has described here? The equity issues, the civil rights issues, the funding issues make my head spin. I don't know how to take those on in particular. I think we can change how schools function by helping them with guidance about how to use their current resources better. I need to brag just a second about my wife. Senator Dodd, let the record show that I bragged about my wife, OK? [Laughter.] She is a principal. And she volunteered to be a principal of a school that is in trouble, a school in need of improvement. When you get designated as a school in need of improvement, you are given 16 things to do. If you are a school that is not in need of assistance, you only have to do a couple things, you know? And if you think about it, schools that are the most in trouble probably have the least capacity to be able to implement those 16 mandates with high fidelity and with big impact. One of the things I was thinking about as everyone was describing what was going on here is how do we really create guidelines, policies that help schools make good decisions about what is effective practice? How do we hold them accountable for selecting those? How do we make sure they implement with fidelity and produce the outcomes that we are really interested in for students? I would also argue that schools are maybe one of our best change agents for families in the sense that if you think about schools, they are probably the second family for most of our kids. When kids go through our education system, they are actually being taught how to become a family member for the future. I think when kids are successful academically as well as socially, they actually are going to take those skills as a parent and use them better as well. So, I think you are absolutely right. Early intervention is the way to go, but I think we also need to be investing in the future parents who are probably the kids going through our school systems now. My spin on it is that we probably don't spend enough time on the social/emotional side of kids' growth, going back to the whole student idea. I am not sure that we have formalized a curriculum of effective strategies for social skills instruction, for social/emotional problem-solving, how to handle conflict, and so forth. We basically set up places where kids move through routines, and we are not experiencing things that are very effective. The Chairman. Senator Bennet, to get back, Mr. Schwarz said he was up in New Jersey, and they were spending $19,000 per student. This is in a district, in a school district. With that, I mean, they ought to be great. So why $19,000 a student per year, per annum, and you are saying they are not getting good results? I mean, that is mind- boggling. Is it what Mr. Canada said? They are just spending more money doing the same old thing, and they are not getting anything changed? Mr. Schwarz. I think part of it is inertia, sort of piling more things on without getting rid of the things that aren't working. Part of it is speaking more to the interests of adults than the interests of kids. Part of it is a lack of rigor around taking new approaches and, when things work, invest more to grow---- The Chairman. What we have to recognize here also is that elementary and secondary education is a local responsibility. And while we have had a role since 1965, mostly supporting low- income kids, through title I as well as for kids with disabilities. We have made investments, but basically education is still a local matter. How do we answer these questions when locals are making significant investments in local education systems, and they are not getting any results? Senator Bennet. I wish that--I want to come back as a panelist, not as a Senator. [Laughter.] If I could do that, because I would have loved to have had this chance to talk to somebody here when I was there. We spend roughly $8,000 a kid in Denver. I think we get better results probably than Newark. But in terms of materiality, of moving children who are born into one zip code into another zip code on the economic ladder or in reality, there isn't a material difference from Denver to Los Angeles to New York to Detroit, as Geoffrey Canada mentioned. Our Federal spending is roughly 9 percent of what we spend on K-12 education, right? The Chairman. That is about right. Senator Bennet. Even if you doubled that, which we are not going to be able to do, the question is, would you make a material difference in terms of the work that any of these people are trying to do or all the teachers and principals across the United States of America are trying to do every single day? The way I think about it is that layering the 9 percent on top of a system that is out of date and where the incentives and disincentives are really very unaligned from the outcomes that everybody wants for kids probably is not a great way of helping. But figuring out how to use that 9 percent to inspire people to try new things, knowing that we don't have all the answers here because it is a local thing may be a better way of thinking about it. The Chairman. Response, somebody? Mr. Cardinali. Senator Bennet. Having said all that, we would gladly take $18,000 a kid in the Denver Public Schools. Mr. Cardinali. That is right. Senator Bennet. At all the schools across Colorado. Mr. Cardinali. I want to make a couple of comments. First, I want to directly respond to Senator Bennet's point about at the user end, the superintendent or principal end, that by the time the money arrives, the restrictions are extremely painful to deal with. There are two elements to that. One is that administrative leaders and teachers are often having to figure out more how to get access to the dollars than actually how to deploy them and make a difference. The second is that the purpose of this conversation I understood to be invited was about the holistic side of the conversation. I would like to suggest that as we talk about all of these resources, to beat a slightly dead horse about the integration of them, that communities and schools developed, in a sense, a technology to resolve this problem. It is not just ours. We actually want it in the reauthorization of ESEA because we believe it is so difficult to systemically break down these barriers that, actually, at the user end, if there is someone dedicated to working with teachers and principals, community resources, and other streaming resources that sit outside the school and allocate them against very clear, measurable differences, you can solve this problem relatively easily, relative to having to rework the entire system. I just think there is actually a way to think about this that allows for all of these excellent programs to be held accountable to their own results. There is a discipline around afterschool programming, around mentoring and tutoring, which we want. And then the alignment of those against school outcomes, which is, at the end of the day, what we want to see. We want to see Newark rocketing up. I think that there are elements about what happens in that school building or virtually, however you want to define it, and then there is the use of those resources in an accelerator to make that all work more effectively. The Chairman. Ms. Jefferies, you had something to add? Ms. Jefferies. I did. Thank you. I wanted to propose that we think about ESEA and also concurrent work that is going on with the Serve America Act. Higher Achievement is involved in sort of both conversations, and I think volunteers are an important aspect of this conversation that helps save money to some extent, which I know is important. It also helps build the social fabric in our communities. It connects across different classes. It exposes young people to new worlds of opportunity, and I think they can also become individual donors, which help organizations become more self-sufficient. There is a lot of benefit when you can begin to tap into the base of volunteers and also inspire more people to volunteer to help our children. One other point that I haven't heard raised is the importance of summer, and you can actually explain--the Hopkins study showed that you can explain half, more than half of the achievement gap between classes based on unequal access to summer programs. It is essential, and it is uneven across the board. Underserved students may be forced to go to summer school, but that is more of the same. Just what Eric said, that is not going to solve the problem. If we can have engaging summer opportunities for all students, that money will be well spent. Senator Bennet. What is amazing about that study is what it says about the middle class kids, is that they actually gain ground during the summer when they are not in the programs. Ms. Jefferies. Exactly. Senator Bennet. When they are not in the school. Which means the gap just gets bigger. The Chairman. Senator Franken, do you have something you want to interject here? Senator Franken. Yes. Dr. Sugai was talking, and I read his testimony and also that you brought up something that just made me think of something very specific that has been on my mind, which is you were talking about the environment of the school, about the socialization of the kids. I have a very specific thing that I am going to be actually introducing a bill about, which is LGBT youth being bullied. Right now, we have laws that prohibit bullying on pretty much everything, on the basis of race and religion and other things, but not on that, on gender identity and on gay and lesbian kids. The evidence is that gay kids are bullied a lot, and that their achievement goes down. There is a lot of absenteeism. There is even suicide. I just maybe would like you to speak to not just that specific issue, but the issue of how you create an environment that kids learn in where they are working together, and what is the best way to create a positive behavioral environment? Dr. Sugai. Great question. First response is our basic response in general to bullying has been a reactive management strategy. Zero tolerance. Punish the kids. Create environments of control. Much of the literature suggests that if that is your response, it is going to be ineffective in supporting those kids or any kid inside the school. If you look again at the risk prevention literature and the violence literature, it is very clear about what is needed. One is you need to create a schoolwide environment where kids are academically and socially confident, meaning they are taught social skills. The instruction is the most effective at producing good academic success. Kids who experience academic success and social success are better able to deal with teasing, with bullying, and so forth. They are also less likely to do it because they are getting their needs met in other ways. Going back to that literature, it is about targeted social skills instruction for all kids and more specific instruction for those kids who might have some risk factors--the bullies, if you will. A third feature is academic success. The fourth one is that adults have to model what we want the kids to be able to display. Our research indicates that it is really hard to teach kids not to bully when they are seeing bullying around them, and it is clearly a factor that contributes to it. The adults have to actually change their interaction patterns with the kids for that to be successful. Underlying all of that is this administrative structure that actually endorses more prevention-based, proactive models. If the teachers are told to do something and there are no incentives or contingencies for staff members to contribute to a safe and caring environment, we are in trouble. Just to brag again about my wife. She is at an elementary school of 500 kids. She greets every single kid at the door when they come into school every single day. The effect of that is that kids enter the classroom ready to learn and also interacting with others as they meet them in the hallway. That is a big deal for us. Parents see her greeting the kids. Parents perceive the school as a more welcoming place, and guess what happens to parent involvement as a result of that? A specific example that is intended to indicate that the larger school-wide climate for all kids is really important. The Chairman. Excuse me. I am sorry. Senator Dodd had to leave. Senator Franken. May I just say something? The Chairman. Sure. Senator Franken. I think we should call Senator Bennet as a witness at one of these hearings. [Laughter.] The Chairman. I am sorry, Ms. Struck, you had something to add? Ms. Struck. I would like to respond to Senator Franken's comments and questions as well that when we talk about the whole child, we are talking about school-wide initiatives like school-wide character education programs that are integrated into the curriculum but also immersed into the school climate and culture. It is not just signs on the wall. It is not just these fun, creative lessons we do in the classrooms. One of the most important factors is what adults model. And so, adults modeling acceptance, awareness, teaching about diversity--that can be taught. Those character education ideas can be taught across the curriculum. Also, we need to look at policy. In Iowa, we did pass a bullying and harassment law, and in that bullying and harassment law, there is protection for kids on sexual orientation or perceived sexual orientation. But we, as the adults, have to be the models, and we have to be comfortable to acknowledge realistically that that does happen in our schools. You are right on, Senator Franken. That is one of the harshest, worst kinds of bullying and harassment that happens in schools all around the country. Ms. Henderson. I just want to add one final thing, which is kids spend 70 percent of their waking hours outside school, and most of that time is under the care and direction of their families. When schools are initiating any anti-bullying and other kinds of positive social behavior programs, parents need to be there and understand what it is so they can use those strategies at home and in the community with their kids. Because that will start to change the tenor of the whole context. The Chairman. Yes, Ms. Greene. Ms. Greene. I just wanted to add to that that one of the places that our students are exposed to bullying is online, maybe afterschool hours. I know that part of our library learning is we address and talk about that online community and how we behave on that online community. We are also offering evening programs where parents can come and learn about Internet safety and about cyber bullying and what their role should be in making sure that that doesn't happen. The Chairman. Let me ask you--we are going to have to wrap up here--have you all looked at the proposed Common Core standards that I think 48 States have agreed to adopt? Do the standards focus specifically on math, science, and reading or do they focus on the needs of the whole child? Dan? Mr. Cardinali. Not so much looked at them in terms of the content, per se, but what they do is they create a national, a stable national goal that allows both the institution, the public institution--LEAs, SEAs, and Federal Government--to then partner with local, State, and national communities. As we talk about a holistic approach for children, we then can hold ourselves accountable for clear ways--Eric made a very good point earlier about holding ourselves accountable to effective programming. Well, if we know what proficiency looks like across the country, then our effective afterschool programming can then also be held accountable across the country. I think it allows for a marketplace and transparency of effective practice that will only accelerate our ability to make selections when we have to make difficult choices around resource allocation, which are the best programs that are treating the whole child. Ms. Pittman. I would say that having looked at the standards, the good news is that they do mention these 21st century skills--social, emotional competencies, things like that--when you read the opening paragraph. The bad news is that there is no specificity. The Chairman. There is no, what? Ms. Pittman. There is no specificity behind that commitment. In the opening, we want standards for language arts. We want standards for math, etc. Those are laid out in extreme detail. That last bullet of and we want to make sure that young people have social and emotional competencies, 21st century skills, etc., has no detail behind it. That is a place where we need to come, or we are not going to get attention to these sort of things that we are talking about today. Mr. Schwarz. I would love to applaud the approach you are all taking on the committee to move the standards forward, and Secretary Duncan for his effort and his statement to be strong and clear on outcomes and loose on means. What the standards can do, if they are done right, is be very clear about the destination, where we are trying to get all of our kids to a level of proficiency across a broad set of skills, including 21st century skills, including thinking skills. Then it is up to the programs on this panel and those we represent and thousands more like us to figure out the best way to get there. To do that in very creative ways that are engaging and hands-on and fun. Because you can get a kid to proficiency in algebra in a number of ways. Too often the current methods have not been working. So most kids are not getting to proficiency in algebra. We are finding some success with developing curriculum around video game design, just to give that one example where kids are learning algebraic concepts. They are also learning to be producers, not just consumers of technology. They are learning algebra, and they are getting to those high standards and getting the high thinking skills through a hands-on, real- world approach. I think that is what some of the folks on this panel can do, and clear standards can create the environment for that kind of creativity to happen. The Chairman. Last word from the panel. Ms. Henderson. Ms. Henderson. I just want to put in a plug for the national PTA, who has put out standards for family and community engagement because we didn't think that the national standards project would go beyond academics and include this. I had the honor of working with them to produce them. I can say the State of Kentucky is the first, I know of, to adopt standards very like those. They customized them for their own context, and they are now part of what scholastic improvement teams go and look at in schools that have not made progress for 2 years in a row. Not only do they look at academics, but they use these State standards to look at the extent to which the schools are working with and engaging families and community organizations and helping to make progress with their students. I would absolutely recommend that this approach be encouraged nationally. The Chairman. Ms. Pittman. Ms. Pittman. If I could make one final comment? We are talking a lot today about both social/emotional skills and the larger competencies that we want young people to have, and we are talking about curricula and things that we can do to change schools. One of probably the most important things I think we could do is to just have an annual way to understand the nonacademic side of young people. The Gallup organization has implemented a student poll that is now being made available for free for school districts across the country for the next 10 years because they want to build up a national poll. They measure three things--hope, engagement, and well-being. Only one in four students in our public schools, 5th through 12th grade, measure well on all three of those things. Only 50 percent of kids are hopeful. Only 50 percent of them say that they are engaged in school, and those numbers decline steadily. For every year they are in school, they are less engaged in school. And then only about two-thirds are thriving. If we had measures like that up on the screen every year telling us as a country that our young people are coming to school, they are coming into buildings, but they are leaving not hopeful, not engaged, not thriving, we can't expect any of the outcomes that we are talking about to really be a 21st century community. The Chairman. Well, thank you all very much. This has been one of the best panels we have had, and the conversation could go on. Just to close up a couple of things. Mr. Canada asked about structure, and talked about doing the same thing with the same structures in place. I have asked this question before. Society, writ large, has changed a great deal in the last 300, 400 years if you think about it. Just think about how much we have changed not just in the last 10 years or 50, but in the last 400 years. In spite of these many changes, the structure of the classroom remains the same as the structure that we had 400 years ago. One teacher, desks lined up in rows. Is that the best structure to support the whole student in the 21st century? Society has also become more fragmented. Kids have tough lives. Some of these kids come from tough homes, single parents. They see violence, and struggle with poverty. Some don't have access to good healthcare, dental care or eye glasses. A lot of things are weighing on these kids. Students are not only dealing with academic challenges, they are also dealing with social and emotional problems, whether it is their diet, whether it is the influence of substances or peers. There are a lot of things out there. How do we deal with the need of the whole student because their lives are not fragmented? Perhaps we ought to be thinking the classroom should have more than a teacher. Maybe we need a counselor, someone who is well-trained in child behavior and development, to be there, too. An instructor to teach and another professional to attend to the social and emotional well-being of each child. Maybe you don't need one in every classroom, but maybe one for every couple of classrooms. Someone who can actually make home visits and follow up with the child, to find out what is happening in the home to get involved with the families. It is hard to get families in, to get them involved. It is something I wrestle with all the time. How do you get families involved? Well, if you had a full-time counselor or child behavioral scientist, someone who is well-trained to work with kids and to work with parents and families in a nonthreatening way, you could attend to the needs of the whole child. I am thinking, maybe this whole structure is wrong and we need to change it. Senator Dodd talked about early childhood. I keep waving this book around. It is sort of a staple of mine here. The first year I came here it was in 1985. the first year I came here. Then-President Ronald Reagan said that he wanted a study done on education, and these are my own words, not his. Here is what I heard him say. I don't want any of these pointy- headed liberals, and I don't want any of these soft-headed teachers and stuff. I want hard-headed business people to look at this and tell us what we need in education to prepare for the future. So they put together this Committee on Education, CED. A group of CEOs of some of our largest corporations. The head of the study was James Renier, the head of Honeywell, and they went on and completed this whole study. I forgot about it. I came to the Senate and got on this committee in 1988. By 1991, I was chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Education. And Jim Renier, whom I had never met, asked to meet with me. He came into my office, plunked this book down on my desk and reminded about the study. I could read you the list of the corporate executives that are on this committee. I mean, the head of Texas Instruments, the Freeman Company, Aetna Life, Sun Company, Ciba-Geigy, and on and on and on, Mellon Bank. And so, he put that study down on my desk. And do you know what their executive summary was, these hard-headed business people, the CEOs of these big corporations? Do you know what they said we had to do in education? Here was their executive summary, ``We must understand that education begins at birth, and the preparation for education begins before birth.'' It is all here, from 20 years ago. They talked about the importance of maternal and child healthcare programs, early learning programs, early intervention programs for children. Twenty years ago, they said that, and we haven't done a darn thing about it. The last thing I think about relates to what Mr. Bennet said. Senator Bennet said 9 percent of education funding is Federal funding. So you wonder how much we can do. I think No Child Left Behind shows that we can provoke change, for good or bad. How can we use the limited amount of money available to get these changes, to promote this kind of change at the local level? Again, I just say we just have to do something about getting people to think about the needs of the whole student. If a kid comes to school and he comes from a low-income family and has no access to healthcare--maybe he has got bad teeth, and he hasn't got dental care--when he's in class he can't focus because he is in pain and you wonder why they are not learning. Or for too many students, their diet consists of sugar, salts, and fats, you know? You wonder why they cycle between extreme highs and lows, because that is their diet. I think we just really have to understand that education can't stand by itself. It just can't stand by itself. It has got to involve the social fabric, the family, the community, the health and well-being of that child, both physical as well as emotional and mental aspect of these kids. Unless and until we do that, I think Mr. Canada is right. We are just going to continue to just do the same thing over and over and over again unless we challenge some of these structures and the way we have been doing these things. This was a great panel. You have provoked a lot of thinking in me. I know all of us here thank you very much for being here. I ask you to continue to be involved with us as we proceed on in ESEA reauthorization. I encourage you to come in and give us your best thoughts. I have my own Web site. It is called esea [email protected] I ask that any time you have some thoughts--you have heard us say something, you have heard something come up, you think you want to give some input, [email protected] I ask you to continue to be involved with us on that. Thank you all very much. We will leave the record open for 10 days until May 6, 2010. Again, thank you all, and this hearing is adjourned. [Additional material follows.] ADDITIONAL MATERIAL Prepared Statement of Al Brandel I would like to begin by thanking Chairman Tom Harkin, Ranking Member Mike Enzi and members of this distinguished committee for the opportunity to provide this testimony on Reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). I would also like to congratulate you, Mr. Chairman, and your colleagues, for examining the way organizations can collaborate with the Federal Government in addressing the needs of the whole student and improving educational opportunities. Lions Clubs International represents the largest and most effective NGO service organization presence in the world. Awarded and recognized as the #1 NGO organization for partnership globally by The Financial Times 2007, Lions Clubs International also holds the highest four star (highest) rating from the Charity Navigator.com (an independent review organization). Lions and its official charity arm, Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF), have been world leaders in serving the vision, hearing, youth development, and disability needs of millions of people in America and around the world, and we work closely with other NGOs such as Special Olympics International to accomplish our common service goals. Since LCIF was founded in 1968, it has awarded more than 9,000 grants, totaling more than US $640 million for service projects. All administrative costs are paid for through interest earned on investments, allowing LCIF to maximize out impact on the community and demonstrating the motto ``We Serve.'' Soon after its founding in Chicago in 1917, Lions Clubs became a service-oriented ``export'' to the World. Our current 1.3 million- member global membership, representing over 200 countries, serves communities through the following ways: protect and preserve sight; provide disaster relief; combat disability; promote health; and serve youth. The 14,000 individual Lions Clubs representing 400,000 individual citizens in North America are constantly expanding to add new programs and its volunteers are working to bring health and educational services to as many communities as possible. Today, our school-aged children face many complex challenges, from bullying, violence, and drugs that harm their healthy development. I will offer a brief summary of my remarks through an overview of where Lions Clubs International is involved with youth, and recommendations for stronger Federal partnerships and involvement. ``lions quest'' education programs Lions Clubs International's youth development initiatives, known collectively as ``Lions Quest,'' have been a prominent part of school- based K-12 programs since 1984. Fulfilling its mission to teach responsible decisionmaking, effective communications and drug prevention, Lions Quest has been involved in training more than 350,000 educators and other adults to provide services for over 11 million youth in programs covering 43 States. LCIF currently invests more than $2 million annually in supporting life skills training and service learning, and that funding is matched by local Lions, schools and other partners. Lions Quest curricula incorporate parent and community involvement in the development of health and responsible young people in the areas of: life skills development (social and emotional learning), character education, drug prevention, service learning, and bullying prevention. There is even a physical fitness component to this program that can assist Federal goals of reducing obesity in school-aged children. These Lions Quest programs provide strong evidence of decreased drug use, improved responsibility for students own behavior, as well as stronger decisionmaking skills and test scores in math and reading. In August 2002, Lions Quest received the highest ``Select'' ranking from the University of Illinois at Chicago-based Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning (CASEL) for meeting standards in life skills education, evidence of effectiveness and exemplary professional development. Lions Quest has extensive experience with Federal programs. Lions Quest Skills for Adolescence received a ``Promising Program'' rating from the U.S. Department of Education Safe and Drug Free Schools and a ``Model'' rating from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Lions Quest also has extensive experience of partnering with State service commissions to reach more schools and engage more young people in service learning. Successful partnerships have been active in Michigan, New York, Oklahoma, Tennessee and West Virginia with progress being made in Texas and Ohio. Service Learning Initiatives Lions Clubs strongly support Congressional efforts to fund the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act that was signed into law 1 year ago. The Serve America Act authorizes the Corporation for National and Community Service to expand existing programs and add several new programs and initiatives to provide service learning school-based programs for students as well as Innovative and Community-Based Service-Learning Programs and Research. Another program of value that was authorized by the Edward M. Kennedy Act is the Social Innovation Fund that provides growth capital and other support so that the most effective programs can be identified. Social and Emotional Learning Programs In addition, Lions Clubs recommends expanded congressional support for social and emotional learning (SEL) programs that stimulate growth among schools nationwide through distribution of materials and teacher training, and to create opportunities for youth to participate in activities that increase their social and emotional skills. Not only do SEL curricula contribute to the social and emotional development of youth, but they also provide invaluable support to students' school success, health, well-being, peer and family relationships, and citizenship. While still conducting scientific research and reviewing the best available science evidence, over time Lions Clubs and its SEL partners have increasingly worked to provide SEL practitioners, trainers and school administrators with the guidelines, tools, informational resources, policies, training, and support they need to improve and expand SEL programming. Lions Clubs share a commitment with SEL partners on this important issue, and we have long been an important voice for this school reform in conjunction with the Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning (CASEL) staff. Overall, SEL training programs and curricula have outstanding benefits for school-aged children:
SEL prevents a variety of problems such as alcohol and drug use, violence, truancy, and bullying. SEL programs for urban youth emphasize the importance of cooperation and teamwork. Positive outcomes increase in students who are involved in social and emotional learning programming by an average of 11 percentile points over other students. With greater social and emotional desire to learn and commit to schoolwork, participants benefit from improved attendance, graduation rates, grades, and test scores. Students become caring, concerned members of their communities. The Bank of America Foundation recently partnered with the Lions Quest program to support growth in Chicago public schools. Lions Quest has a positive presence in this schools system, a critical at-risk region where the high school graduation rate of just over 50 percent, more than 83 percent of students are low income, and less than two- thirds of high school students met or exceeded standards for their grade level. By reaching out to these high-risk students in Chicago and many other urban and rural areas, LCIF and Bank of America are helping reverse some of these trends on a school-by-school basis. We recently expressed our support for House legislation (H.R. 4223 introduced in December by Representatives Dale E. Kildee, Judy Biggert, and Tim Ryan), and it is our hope that a companion bill will be introduced soon in the Senate. Furthermore, we urge its inclusion in ESEA re-authorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. There are several benefits in this legislation for the Department of Education's goals for ``successful, safe, and healthy students.'' These include: expand district and State SEL initiatives, evaluate the impact of SEL programs, and create a national center to provide training and technical support. Lions Clubs remains committed to positive youth development and youth service programs that engage our schools and teachers. Today, students face many challenges, and Lions Clubs International understands the importance not only of academic excellence, healthy living, and community service but of instilling those values among members of our next generation. The success of non-profit entities such as Lions Clubs show what the service sector can do for the economic and social development of students, many of whom are hard hit by the recession, and we are committed to forming more effective alliances and partnerships to increase our domestic impact among youth. Mr. Chairman, we look forward to working with you and your colleagues on addressing these important challenges. Prepared Statement of Lynn E. Linde, Ed.D. The American Counseling Association (ACA), the Nation's largest non-profit organization representing school counselors and other professional counselors working in different settings, is grateful for the opportunity to submit written testimony on meeting the needs of the whole student in the context of reauthorizing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). We applaud the committee for devoting time and attention to this important issue. Professional school counselors play an important role in ensuring that students are ready to learn, and able to reach their maximum potential. All States require graduate-level training in school counseling as an entry-level prerequisite for credentialing as a school counselor, and 44 States require completion of a master's degree in school counseling or related field. School counselors receive substantial training in a range of areas encompassing children's growth and development within the education system, including in human development, counseling interventions, assessment, academic development, and research and evaluation. Professional school counselors provide the full range of students--across general- and special-education populations--essential ``9 a.m. to 3 p.m.'' school counseling services and academic supports, as well as consultation, collaboration, and coordination with teachers, principals, families and community-based professionals providing the ``3 p.m. to 9 p.m.'' services for students and families requiring more intensive support. Studies document that high-quality school counseling services increase academic achievement, and can help narrow the college-access gap between lower-income and higher-income student groups. School counseling services help increase students' well-being, improve student behavior, reduce incidence of bullying and other disruptive behavior, and foster more productive school environments. A recent meta-analysis of school counseling outcome research involving 117 studies of 153 school counseling interventions with 16,296 students found a significant effect size (ES) of .30.\1\ This means that the students who participated in the school counseling interventions improved almost a third of a standard deviation more than their peers who did not receive the interventions. In other words, school counseling interventions have a larger effect size than aspirin for preventing heart attacks (ES of .06) and larger than the overall effectiveness of acetaminophen, a.k.a. Tylenol (ES of .19).\2\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \1\ Whiston, S.C. & Quinby, R.F. (2009). Review of school counseling outcome research. Psychology in the Schools, 46(3), 267-272. \2\ Dimmitt, C. (March 24, 2010). Evidence-based practice in school counseling: using data and research to make a difference. National Center for School Counseling Outcome Research and Evaluation. University of Massachusetts--Amherst. Slide presentation. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- Surveying 22,601 students, and after researchers controlled for socioeconomic status and enrollment size, students attending middle schools with more fully implemented comprehensive counseling programs reported earning higher grades, having fewer problems related to the physical and interpersonal milieu in their schools, feeling safer attending their schools, having better relationships with their teachers, believing that their education was more relevant and important to their futures, and being more satisfied with the quality of education available to them in their schools.\3\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \3\ Lapan, R.T., Gysbers, N.C., & Petroski, G.F. (2001). Helping seventh graders be safe and successful: A statewide study of the impact of comprehensive guidance and counseling programs. Journal of Counseling and Development, 79, 320-330. --------------------------------------------------------------------------- A statewide study of Missouri high schools found that students in schools with more fully implemented school counseling programs were more likely to report that they had earned higher grades, their education was better preparing them for the future, their school made more career and college information available to them, and their school had a more positive climate (greater feelings of belonging and safety at school, classes less likely to be interrupted, peers behaving better). After controlling for school enrollment size and socioeconomic status, positive program effects were still found.\4\ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- \4\ Lapan, R.T., Gysbers, N.C., & Sun, Y. (1997). The impact of more fully implemented guidance programs on the school experiences of high school students: A statewide evaluation study. Journal of Counseling & Development, 75, 292-302. Professional school counselors and related personnel are instrumental in implementing individual and schoolwide interventions (e.g., Response to Intervention (RTI), Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS), Social and Emotional Learning (SEL), school climate surveys, etc.), expanding family and community engagement in education, and managing linkages that make community schools successful. As our education system continues to evolve, we believe there will be an even greater need for professional school counselors and their colleagues to help students, teachers, principals and entire schools succeed. We believe ESEA reauthorization must continue to invest in professional school counselors and related school-based personnel as key partners with teachers and principals, in order to achieve maximum improvements in academic achievement and economic competitiveness. ACA is very concerned about proposals to eliminate the Elementary and Secondary School Counseling Program (ESSCP). ESSCP was first established as a demonstration project in 1994, under Senator Harkin's leadership. Since that time the program has come to serve as a key resource for often cash-strapped State and local education agencies. ESSCP is the only Federal program that provides funds dedicated exclusively to hiring professional school counselors, school social workers and school psychologists to develop and expand comprehensive and collaborative school counseling programs. The need for ESSCP is all too clear. The current funding level ($55 million for fiscal year 2010) allows support of only about 1 in 10 applications. In 2009, the program helped more than 429,000 students in some 850 schools across 29 States get counseling services through new grants to establish or expand counseling programs. ESEA reauthorization must continue to provide focused support for school counselors and related school-based personnel, who are working daily to prepare students for academic and personal success. We would welcome the opportunity to work with the committee to develop safeguards and standards to ensure that Federal support for counseling services and personnel is increased, not eliminated, under ESEA reauthorization. For future correspondence, please contact Dominic W. Holt, MSW, MFA in the ACA Office of Public Policy and Legislation at (703) 823-9800, ext. 242, or [email protected] Thank you again for this opportunity. [Whereupon, at 12:08 p.m., the hearing was adjourned.]