MDE Weekly Superintendent Mail

January 17, 2014

Commissioner’s Dialogue with Superintendents

Thank you to all who participated in Wednesday’s conference call. Updates were given regarding assessment, graduation rates release, the waiver renewal process, the upcoming legislative session (beginning February 25) and the World’s Best Workforce initiative.

The call schedule is as follows: February 19, March 19, April 16 and May 21. All are held 9:30-10:30 a.m. Call-in instructions will be sent prior to each call.


We Day 2014 – November 12!

As we begin a new year, we can anticipate the amazing acts of service (locally and globally) in which our youth will be involved. And, just as we celebrated their ability to change the world last year, we will be doing it again at We Day next fall.  Please mark your calendars for November 12, 2014, at the Xcel Energy Center.  Watch for more details via this mailing in the months ahead.

World’s Best Workforce Update

World’s Best Workforce Question of the Week: “Should the newly legislated Postsecondary Plans for all students in grades 9-12 be included in our WBWF plan?”

Answer: Absolutely! The student Postsecondary Plans (Minn. Stat. § 120B.125) are a great way to track student progress towards meeting the state standards and being career and college ready, both of which are basic required components of the WBWF legislation. Remember, this plan is a district’s way to inform the community about all of the great things that are in place in the district to assist every student in being successful both in their school career as well as their postsecondary endeavors.

A planning document is available to help drive formative conversations within school districts as they develop their WBWF plans over the next several months. Access the planning document. Watch for future WBWF updates each week in this newsletter.

A PowerPoint presentation on the WBWF legislation is available that can be used by districts to inform staff, parents and other stakeholders. Access the PowerPoint presentation.

Any questions regarding the World’s Best Workforce initiative can be sent to

District and School Site Verification – Please Review Contact Information

So that school districts and charter schools are informed of important information from the Minnesota Department of Education, we will soon be updating our superintendent e-mail listserv. This listserv is used for sending the MDE Weekly Superintendent Mail and any other special mailings (including urgent messages) from Commissioner Brenda Cassellius. This is a good time for district and school site verification coordinators to review and update their school and district contact information if any changes have ocurred recently.

To update contact information for your district or school, visit the District and School Site Verification Web page.


Grant Opportunity – Federal 21st Century Community Learning Centers, Cohort 6

See the January 16 memorandum regarding this federal funding opportunity. The Minnesota Department of Education is seeking applications from eligible applicants such as Minnesota schools, school districts, non-profit agencies, city or county government agencies, faith-based organizations, institutions of higher education and for-profit corporations. The funding is available for the purpose of establishing, sustaining and/or enhancing community learning centers statewide as part of the 21st Century Community Learning Center Grant Program.

Funding is available from CFDA 84.287C, After School Learning Centers through No Child Left Behind, Title IV, Part B, in the amount of $4,000,000. There is no maximum grant award but grant award minimums are $50,000.

Access the application documents on the Grant Opportunity Web page. The application must be received (not postmarked) by Monday, March 10, 2014, 4:30 p.m., Central Time.

For further information, contact Eric Billiet at

Decision-Making Strategies for Early Kindergarten Entrance Workshop – February 13, 2014

Registration is now open for the Decision-Making Strategies for Early Kindergarten Entrance Workshop. This workshop is designed to assist school districts and charter schools in developing board-approved policies for the early admission of select students into kindergarten or first grade.

The Decision-Making Strategies for Early Entrance Workshop will be held at the Minnesota Department of Education, Conference Center B, Room 15, on Thursday, February 13, 2014, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. The workshop will provide you with detailed information about effective strategies for considering select children who potentially may be admitted to kindergarten or first grade prior to meeting the age-eligibility entrance requirements. The cost of the workshop is $25. Morning refreshments and lunch will be provided. CEUs will be available. To register for this workshop, visit the Metro ECSU website. Registration deadline is February 7, 2014.

For additional information, contact Debbykay Peterson at, or contact Wendy Behrens at

Minnesota Board of Teaching Licensure Actions

The Minnesota Board of Teaching has taken the following licensure actions:

Lindemeier, Erik (FF 352737) Pursuant to the Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law and Order adopted by the Board of Teaching on January 10, 2014, Mr. Lindemeier’s application for the renewal of his teaching license is denied.

Wiley-Cloman, Jermaine (FF 475212) Pursuant to the Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law and Order adopted by the Board of Teaching on January 10, 2014, Mr. Wiley-Cloman’s application for a teaching license is denied for a period of six months and until he can meet other requirements by the Board.

ED Review – A U.S. Department of Education Newsletter

ED Review provides a biweekly update on U.S. Department of Education initiatives and activities. See the latest ED Review posting on the U.S. Department of Education website.