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February Newsletter

Monday, February 22, 2016   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Lauren Nero
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The past few weeks at A+PEL have been nothing short of exciting. Between several projects, professional development, and advocacy, we have been busy supporting our teachers. We know that you are extremely active in the classroom, and out of the classroom in extra curricular activities and weekend programs. Each and every A+PEL State Office Staffer continues to embrace Louisiana’s teachers with open hearts and fresh ideas. Read on to learn about some of the wonderful news and opportunities that A+PEL has to offer this month!

Free Educator All Star Conference
Stand for Children Louisianaishosting their annualFreeEducator All Star conference in Lafayette on March 12 from 8:30-3pm at the Lite Center. Participants will hear from local, state, and nationalleaders in the areas of teacher preparation/ evaluation/mentoring, early childhood education, and educator advocacy.

There will also be a special session on strategies to obtain ahighly effective rating on the Danielson Rubric. Louisiana Department of Education leaders, key state legislators and BESE members will be on hand to present and answer policy questions. Register here:

Governor Edwards Calls Special Session
Special Legislative session began on Valentine’s Day. It was called to focus on the state’s ongoing financial issues. The Legislature's regular session will follow shortly after on March 14. A+PEL has been present at session representing our teachers and taking note of potential legislation. At this point, the financial outlook will continue to be tight for K-12 education, but we are optimistic that we may escape the worstof the cuts. There are a few TRSL reform bills, but it is unclear at this point if any of them will make it out of committee. It seems like our public servants at all levels are understanding how important education is to the future of our state and the amazing job that educators are doing on a daily basis!

In the last few days, many of you have contacted us about TOPS. Currently, TOPS has a $28 million deficit this year. However, with recent announcements from various college presidents and the governor's office, we do not expect any changes to current TOPS students this semester. We will continue to monitor all funding issues related to TOPS, and, as always, will keep you informed.Clickhereto view and follow bills filed during this Special Session

Scholarship Deadlines Coming Up!
A+PEL is proud to offer several Scholarships and Grants to Louisiana’s educators. OnTuesday, March 15the Debra Nelson/Polly Broussard Scholarship (up to $500 for student teachers) application is due.

OnSunday, May 15, applications for the JY Sanders Social Studies Scholarship is due.

Find out more about these Scholarships and Grantshere.

Volunteer of the Year
We appreciate all of the nominations and selections we have received for our annual Volunteer of the Year awards! If you have nominated a volunteer, please be on the lookout for an email from Lauren, Terri, or Rebecca. Our banquet will be held on June 14, 2016. Please let us know if you are celebrating nominees on a local level as well! Questions? EmailLauren.

Standards Review Committee Concluded
The Standards Review Committee and Subcommittees have concluded their six-month review of the Common Core State Standards and will present their recommendations to BESE on March 3 and 4. The review process recommends that approximately 20% of the state’s 1,287 benchmark standards be revised. The review of the benchmarks in reading, writing, and math were presented to the Superintendent’s Advisory Council on Thursday, February 18, and were met with praise by those superintendents in attendance.After presentation to BESE, the recommendations face scrutiny by the state House and Senate Education Committees and Gov. John Bel Edwards.

GetCarried Away with Education!
Mark your calendars for July 13th-14thfor “Carried Away with Education”, the A+PEL Summer Conference! Regardless of what you teach, with over 50 professional development sessions, there is something for you! Network and hang out with your friends during the evening vendor social, play our digital scavenger hunt to win awesome prizes, and join us for fun evening events and contests. The cost is only $125 for A+PEL members and $150 for non-members. Register by April 1stfor a $25 discount! Breakfast and lunch is included both days! Clickhereto register.

Want to learn more about our organization or become more involved? Join us on Tuesday, July 12thfor the pre-conference for only $25! Would you like to attend the pre-conference for FREE? Contact your local A+PEL Chapter officer for a pre-conference coupon code. Clickhereto find your local officers’ contact information.


Do you have awesome ideas that other educators would like to know? We’re looking for presentations in every content area, classroom management and discipline, classroom technology, educational leadership, and ANY other topics you think would benefit teachers! Deadline for submitting your proposal is March 15th! Clickhereto become a conference presenter.

Upcoming Events and Deadlines

March 15 (Tuesday)-deadline for Deborah Nelson/Polly Broussard Scholarship Application

May 15 (Friday)-Deadline for JY Sanders Social Studies Scholarship

June 10 (Monday)-American Studies Conference in Baton Rouge

June 14 (Tuesday)-Volunteer of the Year Banquet (By Invitation Only)

Have an A+PEL event that you want added to our calendar? Let us knowhere.
Sent by: Lauren P. Nero
General Counsel and Director of Advocacy & Communications
Associated Professional Educators of Louisiana (A+PEL)

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