Thursday, June 12, 2008

The Blog Hot Summer

There is a long-held believe that summer is a quiet time in the education world.

Quite the opposite here at AWSP, actually. The office is more like a bee hive!

In fact, in the last few weeks, things appear to be getting busier. First, there's the AWSP/WASA Summer Conference June 29-July 1 in Spokane. We're the office of record this year, so AWSP has full responsibility for the planning and execution of the event. Our staff is working like crazy to provide a quality end-of-year professional development experience for our members and those at the superintendent's association.

This is also the time of year when our membership department goes into overdrive, tracking all of those position changes in the districts. By August, they'll know the whereabouts of just about every school principal, assistant principal and superintendent in the state. AWSP relies on some wonderful retired members to then take information out to new administrators to talk with them about the benefits of joining the Association. If you know of a new principal in your school or district, be sure to let them know why you like being a member!

Add to this the Basic Education Task Force hearings on school funding, the State Board of Education's work on the revised 9-12 mathematics standards, their Meaningful High School Diploma/Core 24 initiative and the systems accountability project. Plus there's the Higher Education Coordinating Board's proposal to revamp minimum college entrance requirements. Oh, and there's that continuing battle at the federal level over NCLB (Washington principals will be visiting with state Congressional reps next month in D.C.). And don't forget the statewide races for governor and superintendent of public instruction!

Last, but not least, there's some staff changes taking place at the office this summer. Our long-time director of elementary programs and professional development. Terry Barber, will be retiring at the end of the month. North Thurston Principal Paula Quinn will be joining the team in September to assume his duties. And I will also be moving on this month to oversee communications for another statewide association here in Olympia, the Association of Washington Business. The search is on for a new communications director who will take up this blog and all the other good work at AWSP.

Starting this blog was one of my favorite projects at AWSP and I look forward to seeing this and other technologies take off in the months ahead here. Thanks for reading and stay tuned: with everything going on, this could be a blog hot summer!

Jocelyn McCabe