For school superintendents, principals and treasurers


New way to determine kindergarten readiness coming fall 2014
Understanding a child’s learning and development is critical to both families and educators. In this and previous school years, children took the Kindergarten Readiness Assessment - Literacy (KRA-L) when entering school. In fall 2014, a new kindergarten readiness assessment is replacing the KRA-L. 

The new assessment will give kindergarten teachers a comprehensive picture of a child’s learning and development at kindergarten entry, pinpointing where each child is in physical well-being and motor development, language and literacy, mathematics, science, social studies and social skills.

Teachers will have from the first day of school until Nov. 1, 2014, to complete the readiness assessment. The language and literacy portion of the kindergarten readiness assessment may be used to meet the reading diagnostic assessment requirement of the Third Grade Reading Guarantee for kindergarten if the language and literacy items are administered by Sept. 30.

Between April and September 2014, all kindergarten teachers will receive training on the new assessment, including score reporting and using the data. Teachers can select one of three training formats – classroom, online, or a combination of classroom and online – to best meet their learning styles and offer training flexibility to their schedules.

Details and schedules will be available through the Ohio Department of Education and the state support teams in coming months. More information is available here. Contact the department’s Office of Early Learning and School Readiness at (614) 995-9974 or ELSR@education.ohio.gov if you have questions.

Proposals for STEM School Designation are due March 14
Proposals for STEM School Designation must be submitted by 3 p.m. on Tuesday, March 14. Additional information on the call for proposals for Ohio STEM School Designation can be found here. For more information, please contact Jennifer Williams at jennifer.williams@education.ohio.gov or (614) 466-4235.

The Ohio STEM Learning Network and Battelle are hosting a technical assistance meeting for schools applying for the STEM School Designation through the Ohio STEM Committee. The meeting will offer discussion of application requirements, tips from successful applicants, and a question and answer session. The event will be held on Monday, Feb. 3, from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Reynoldsburg eSTEM Academy located at 8579 Summit Road in Reynoldsburg, Ohio. Click here to RSVP or to find contact information.

Start Talking! makes funds available to support resiliency programming
Start Talking!, a new statewide initiative to reduce youth drug use, announced new funding for evidence-based drug prevention programming that encourages resilience development and resistance to substance use. The reimbursement grants will support Ohio’s most vulnerable student populations by funding efforts to develop students’ resiliency, in turn building students’ skills to cope with life’s stresses and push back against peer pressure.

Programming must target students in grades 5-9, and in schools where 40 percent or higher of the population is eligible for free or reduced lunches. Programming would commence at the start of the 2014-2015 school year. Funding is available through a reimbursement grant using federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) funds and awardees must comply with TANF funding regulations.

The application is available here. Applications must be received by 2 p.m., Friday, Feb. 14 and must be submitted electronically. Please see the website for all additional application requirements and deadlines.