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Board of Education Reviews Public Comment on Education Reform Proposals

December 14, 2012

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The West Virginia Board of Education reviewed public comments submitted for the recently released “From Audit to Action: Students First” report during its monthly meeting in December.

“From Audit to Action” highlights the board’s education reform goals (http://wvde.state.wv.us/policies/audit-response.html) and was developed in response to Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin’s “Education Efficiency Audit of West Virginia’s Primary and Secondary Education System.” Most of the comments focused on a balanced calendar, teacher leadership, teacher paperwork overload solutions and teacher evaluations.

“I was very pleased that people took the time to respond to our audit,” said state Board of Education Vice President Gayle Manchin. “The comments send a very clear message that West Virginia residents welcome change but they want to be part of the process. As we move forward, we need to be very cognizant of reaching out to teachers, administrators and others so they have a voice in some of these very dramatic changes.”

Highlights in “From Audit to Action” include re-examining educator seniority in an effort to place the most qualified teachers in classrooms, raising the enrollment of secondary students in career and technical programs through support for a middle school pipeline, supporting whole-school incentives for student achievement, and conducting meaningful conversations about the sustainability of small county school systems.

Another significant recommendation in “From Audit to Action” is to transfer more authority and responsibility to the local level. This is dependent on the ability of the board and the Legislature to work collaboratively to revise state code regarding supervision, according to the report.

“The board is dedicated to serious education reform, which is needed if we expect to provide our schools and teachers with the tools, training and flexibility necessary for students to succeed in life and work,” West Virginia Board of Education President Wade Linger said. “We know that change is never easy but the board is committed to charting the path forward.”

The public can offer comment on the audit response at http://wvde.state.wv.us/policies/audit-response.html.

For more information, contact the West Virginia Department of Education’s Office of Communication at (304) 558-2699. 

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