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Welcome to the home of Project ALDERi: Advancing Longitudinal Data for Educational Reform, a grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Educationi's Institute of Education Sciences to the Oregon Department of Education in its annual (FY09 ARRA) Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems grant competition (CFDA #84.384A, Award No. R384A100053). 

Project ALDERi is an initiative of the Oregon Department of Education in collaboration with the Oregon University System, the Oregon Employment Department, Community Colleges and Workforce Development and Teacher Standards and Practices Commission. This site contains information for all project stakeholders including students, parents, teachers, school and district administrators, legislators and educational researchers. It also includes technical documentation about how our solutions are implemented and details on project progress.

Please contact us if you have any comments, questions or suggestions.

Oregon Wins “Race to the Top” Grant for Early Childhood Learning Programs

 

(Salem, OR) —  Governor Kitzhaber today announced that Oregon is a recipient of the federal “Race to the Top – Early Learning Challenge” grant. The state will receive $20 million over four years to strengthen the state’s early childhood system and ensure that Oregon children reach school ready to succeed.
 
The grant was announced by the U.S Department of Education and the U.S Department of Health and Human Services, which jointly issue the grants. State recipients are chosen based on their ability to implement coherent, compelling, and comprehensive early learning education reform that results in high-quality early learning programs for young children. This funding is designed to spur broad system improvement – not to pay for direct services to young children. A total of $500 million will be awarded through the Race to the Topi – Early Learning Challengei.
 
“This is a welcome endorsement of Oregon’s focus on improving early learning and school readiness,” said Governor Kitzhaber. “Success in school starts long before school. This federal investment in our efforts will help to improve results for children and families and contributes to our efforts to transform Oregon education at all levels.”
 
Jada Rupley, Early Learning System Director, praised the announcement. “Oregon has charted a clear direction and taken many important steps in the past two years to improve early learning. Winning Race To The Topi will help us to move further, faster, to improve opportunities and results for kids.”
 
Oregon’s application was based on the Governor’s initiatives to create a more coordinated approach to budgeting and school curricula across the education spectrum. The federal money will support improvement in the quality of early learning and development programs, better training of early childhood educators, and better measurement of how well programs prepare children for kindergarten. This is Oregon’s first successful Race to the Topi application at any level of education.
 
The statewide Early Learning Council, established in July 2011 by the Oregon Legislature, is the lead agency in charge of implementing the grant. The Early Learning Council is housed in the Governor’s Office and is a part of the Oregon Education Investment Boardi, which oversees the creation of a unified system for investing in and delivering public education from early childhood through high school and college.
 
Thirty-five states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico submitted applications to compete for the first round of the federal early learning grant, which was first announced in 2011. Oregon finished 13th (since revised to 12th) in that first round; only the top nine were funded. Based on the strength of Oregon’s application, the state was invited with four others to apply for a second round of Race to the Topi in April, 2012. That second round application is the subject of today’s announcement.

Oregon Districts and ESDs Collaborate to Select New Student Information System

(Salem) - On November 7, after months of effort, the Oregon Student Information System Consortium (OSIS) announced its intent to award Edupoint Educational Systems. The award is dependent upon the successful completion of contract negotiations.

School districts and ESDs throughout the state have been working together on selecting a common Student Information System (SIS)i that will meet the evolving needs of all ESDs and districts – large and small. The group leading this effort is called the Oregon Student Information System Consortium (OSIS).  Knowing that many districts and ESDs will need a new SISi in the near future, the opportunity existed to combine workforces in preparing a joint purchasing agreement for a new Student Information System. 

The selection process for a common SISi has been a truly collaborative effort, with participation from more than 350 support and school office staff, and over 950 instructional staff from districts and ESDs throughout Oregon. The OSIS Consortium published a Request for Proposal in late June which resulted in proposal submissions by eight Student Information System vendors. The evaluation teams have been working all summer and narrowed the field of vendors down to three finalists. 

Oregon Department of Education Co-Authors SLDS Best Practices Brief

(Salem) – The federal Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems (SLDSi) Grant Program has released a best practices brief co-authored by the Oregon Department of Education (ODEi).  The best practices brief on stakeholder communications is the first brief of its kind released by the program.  The document details strategies and suggests best practices to communicate with SLDSi project stakeholders.

ODEi staff contributing to the brief include Doug Kosty, Josh Klein, Mickey Garrison and Michael Rebar.  In addition to Oregon, other co-authors represent Florida, Georgia, Idaho and Kentucky.  The brief was developed in collaboration with Robin Taylor of the SLDSi State Support Team at the Institute of Education Sciences. 

Though this brief is the first of its kind released by the federal SLDSi Grant Program, future best practice briefs are planned.  According to the program website, the best practices briefs will “…provide lessons learned and targeted strategies to help states overcome common obstacles to creating a high-quality SLDSi.”   

Read the SLDS Best Practices Brief on Stakeholder Communication.

Read more about Oregon's contribution to these efforts in the June/July issues of the Superintendent's Pipeline (page 8).

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