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Missouri State Board of Education Approves ESSA Plan

The State Board of Education approved Missouri’s Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Consolidated State Plan today. The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) began work on the plan more than a year and a half ago, holding nine regional meetings with the public on what matters most in the education of our children. More than 1,200 people attended those events and offered valuable feedback. The process culminated in a draft ESSA plan posted for a 30-day comment period from June 15 through July 15, 2017.

Missouri Improving Educator Preparation Programs

Missouri educator preparation programs are improving their systems for preparing classroom teachers and school leaders. The State Board of Education approved certification areas for 40 Missouri four-year colleges and universities today. Preparation programs and PK-12 are now focused on the same research-based practices, as outlined through the standards and quality indicators. This focus means improved preparation, resulting in better teaching and more learning for students.

Missouri Welcomes New State Board of Education Members

Missouri Governor Eric Greitens appointed three new members to the eight-member State Board of Education today.

Melissa Gelner is chief kinship officer at Askinosie Chocolate, executive director of Chocolate University and principal at M Gelner Marketing in Springfield. She previously worked for 14 years at Tyson Foods, most recently as the director of National Account Customer Marketing. Ms. Gelner earned a management and marketing degree from the University of Tulsa. Gelner will fulfill the remainder of Peter Herschend’s eight-year term. 

Missouri Honors Pioneers in Education

Six educators will be honored as Pioneers in Education on Monday, July 31, for their commitment and contributions to public education in Missouri.

The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) will recognize the 2017 Pioneers during the 56th Annual Cooperative Conference for School Administrators at Tan-Tar-A Resort in Osage Beach. The ceremony will take place during a luncheon where more than 600 school district leaders are expected to be in attendance.

The following individuals will be honored as 2017 Pioneers in Education:

Hundreds of Missouri Students Showcase Their Technical Skills in National SkillsUSA Competition

More than 200 Missouri high school and college students traveled to Louisville, Kentucky, June 19-24 for SkillsUSA’s 53rd annual National Leadership and Skills Conference, the world’s largest showcase of skilled trades. In total, Missouri students brought back 33 first, second, and third-place medallions, and 89 students placed in the top 10 against competitors from all 50 states and two U.S. territories.

Missouri to Offer New Career and Technical Education Certificate for Students

To help Missouri meet its goal of preparing all high school graduates for success, the State Board of Education approved requirements this week for a new career and technical education (CTE) certificate that students can earn in addition to a high school diploma. The requirements were developed in consultation with the state’s CTE advisory council. Students must meet all of the requirements in order to earn the certificate.

Missouri Students Recognized as U.S. Presidential Scholars

Two Missouri high school students were chosen as members of the 53rd class of U.S. Presidential Scholars, as announced by the office of U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos.

Erin Neely (Des Peres; Parkway South High School, Manchester) and Thomas Pointer (Gainesville; Gainesville R-V High School, Gainesville) earned top billing from Missouri, joining representatives from each state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, and U.S. families living abroad.

Eleven additional Missouri students were selected as semifinalists:


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