MDE Weekly Superintendent Mail

September 6, 2013

Welcome to the New School Year!

Earlier this week, at Centennial Elementary School in Richfield and at Parkway Middle School in St. Paul, I welcomed students and staff back to the new school year. I always feel a sense of optimism at this time of year knowing how much students will learn and grow during the year. And I’m sure you feel that sense of optimism, too. I hope your first week or weeks back to school are going well.

- Commissioner Brenda Cassellius

Commissioner’s Dialogue with Superintendents – September 18

The monthly conference calls with Commissioner Brenda Cassellius, which will begin again on September 18, are one of the best ways to stay informed of each other’s work and continue an open dialogue. School district superintendents are invited to participate in the monthly dialogue via audio conference call. The next conference call is scheduled for Wednesday, September 18, 9:30-10:30 a.m. Call-in instructions will be e-mailed to you two to three days prior to the conference call.

Minnesota State Fair Education Booth – Wrap Up

It is hard to believe that another State Fair has come and gone! This year’s Education booth provided a focus on reading—inspiring children to read, and parents to read to them. Information was also provided for older students about higher education planning and College Knowledge Month, which will occur during October.

And, there was an opportunity to share Unsession suggestions. As Governor Dayton has made government reform a top priority for his administration, he is establishing the Unsession—a first-of-its-kind effort to make government better, faster, simpler and more efficient, to improve service, shorten wait times, eliminate old and outdated rules, and undo anything else that makes government nearly impossible for people to understand. There is still time to submit your Unsession suggestions. Find more information and share your suggestions on the Unsession website.

Civil Rights Data Collection

The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) recently sent a letter to all school districts that participated in the 2011-12 Civil Rights Data Collection (CRDC), thanking the school district staff for completing the CRDC survey and announcing the upcoming 2013-14 CRDC. The next CRDC is expected to again be a universal collection in which every public school district and school in the nation will be selected to participate. OCR expects that school districts will report their 2013-14 CRDC data beginning in the fall of 2014. Visit the OCR website for further information about the upcoming 2013-14 CRDC and the proposed list of data elements.

If you have any questions about the upcoming 2013-14 CRDC, please contact Rebecca Fitch ( or Abby Potts (