LEAP - Loudoun Education Alliance of Parents

LEAP - Loudoun Education Alliance of Parents LEAP is an independent, all-volunteer, non-partisan parent network promoting interaction between parents, teachers, local leaders & LCPS administration.

Rules of the Forum The Loudoun Education Alliance of Parents encourages discourse on the articles and other information that it posts on its page. The opinions and comments are those of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views of LEAP or have any association with LEAP. While we understand that people sometimes have strong opinions and will not always agree on issues, we insist on respectful dialogue. LEAP will delete comments that go way off-topic, are clearly intended to fulfill a personal agenda (business or otherwise), contain profanity or lewd comments/images, are deliberately hurtful or threatening, or are potentially libelous. If it happens repeatedly, the poster will be banned from accessing our page. Please alert us (via private message) to any posts that violate the forum rules so that we can address immediately. Thank you for your cooperation.

Mission: - To provide a forum for the discussion and sharing of common educational concerns and ideas and - To serve as a network for interaction among local parent groups, students, teachers, administrators and the Loudoun County Public School System and - To secure for all students in the Loudoun County Public School System the highest advantages in academic, vocational, physical and social education. - The Loudoun Education Alliance of Parents (LEAP) is a non-partisan network that promotes interaction between parents, teachers, School Board members and members of the Loudoun County Public Schools Administrative Team. The mission and objectives of LEAP are promoted via monthly meetings held during the school year on the second Wednesday of the month. Meetings are held in rooms 102 A and 102 B at the LCPS Administration Building in Ashburn, Virginia. Discussion of agenda topics commences at 7:00 p.m. Each two-hour program features a panel discussion on topics of interest to parents and members of the community at large, followed by a Question and Answer session and an update from LCPS Superintendent Dr. Eric Williams. Delegates are elected from each Loudoun County Public School's PTA, PTO or PTSO group to attend the monthly LEAP meetings. In addition to delegates, members of the community are encouraged to attend LEAP meetings. The Loudoun Education Alliance of Parents was founded in 1989 with 20th Judicial Circuit Chief Judge Thomas D. Horne serving as the first president.

Can't join us in person for the June 12 LEAP meeting at 7pm on school safety?  Join us online via our Zoom conference ca...
06/08/2019
Join our Cloud HD Video Meeting now

Can't join us in person for the June 12 LEAP meeting at 7pm on school safety? Join us online via our Zoom conference call.

Worried about school safety? Wondering what you can do and what’s happening behind the scenes to keep students safe? School safety will be the topic of the last meeting of the year - June 12 at 7pm at the LoCo Sheriff's office Ashburn station community room.

Topic: Admin LEAP's Zoom Meeting
Time: Jun 12, 2019 7:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting
https://zoom.us/j/281309858

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+16465588656,,281309858# US

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Phone: 646.558.8656
Meeting ID: 281 309 858

Zoom is the leader in modern enterprise video communications, with an easy, reliable cloud platform for video and audio conferencing, chat, and webinars across mobile, desktop, and room systems. Zoom Rooms is the original software-based conference room solution used around the world in board, confer...

06/04/2019

Worried about school safety? Wondering what you can do and what’s happening behind the scenes to keep students safe? School safety will be the topic of the last meeting of the year - June 12 at 7pm at the LoCo Sheriff's office Ashburn station community room.

One meeting can’t provide all the information needed, but this meeting can help set the foundation for ongoing discussions and a shared understanding of challenges and resources. The Virginia Center for School and Campus safety will provide an overview of school safety audits and threat assessments. The Sheriff’s office will present on school resource officers. Fairfax County Public Schools and Kognito will share information about bullying prevention and mental health resources that have been implemented nationwide and in neighboring counties. The presentations will be recorded and posted online with supporting resources.

Elections will be held after the program. Anyone with interest in enhancing education is invited to run. Working together, we can achieve a lot for our kids.

05/21/2019

This is the letter sent to LCPS. We could use some help promoting this event. Please share the event announcement and indicate if you will attend. I hope to see all members running for school board and board of supervisors attend and learn about school safety and the issues that we see that need attention here in LoCo. Dear Superintendent Williams,

School shootings and other safety issues are occurring at an alarming rate, bringing tragedy and worry to many. Citizens are wondering what they can do and what’s happening behind the scenes to keep students safe. This is an invitation for you and all LCPS to join the Loudoun Education Alliance for Parents (LEAP) on June 12, 2019 at 7 pm to participate in an informative forum on the safety measures in place in our communities and the role that parents, students and community members can play in supporting safe schools.

As you know from participating in previous LEAP forums over the years, LEAP was founded in 1989 with 20th Judicial Circuit Chief Judge Thomas D. Horne serving as the first president. Since then, LEAP has been a forum where parents, citizens, teachers, administrators and elected officials learn and share ideas for enhancing education for all students in the county. Part of LEAP’s purpose is to contribute to the decision making process establishing school policy (Bylaws, Article IVd, 1989) and thousands of volunteers from school parent groups and interested citizens have been participating in forums and sharing information back to their communities for many years, donating time, energy, money, expertise, and ideas on behalf of Loudoun’s kids. School safety in 2019 may be the biggest challenge we have all faced, so we have changed our final program for this school year from technology to school safety.

No forum on school safety would be complete without LCPS collaboration. We are also inviting the Sheriff's office and other panel experts who can provide a national perspective and data. Live web conferencing will be used so that speakers and participants can participate remotely as desired. If you and/or someone you designate will participate in person or online, please let us know by Thursday, May 23. If there’s any other information you’d like before then, please contact me by email or phone.

We hope to hear from you soon,

Steph Eskins Gleason
LEAP Executive Committee 2018-19
703-867-6381

Want to learn more about how your child grew academically this school year?Want to find out what exercises or skills you...
04/24/2019

Want to learn more about how your child grew academically this school year?

Want to find out what exercises or skills your child can practice this summer?

Ask for a MAP (Measure of Academic Progress) report from your LCPS school. Nearly all schools are using MAP this year. They administer a fall, winter and spring evaluation of your child. The test is adaptive so regardless of whether your child is on, above or below grade level, the test will adapt to see what skills your child can perform and which skills he/she is ready to tackle.

The reports show growth over time and specific areas for development. It includes both an overall level score (RIT) as well as a growth score showing how your child progressed over the year. It also includes breakdowns by skill area and suggestions for where your child is ready to learn new skills. Remember you can also use Khan Academy for math practice questions (https://www.khanacademy.org/mappers). My children's student profile reports ranged from 15 pages to over 40 pages (summary on initial 2-3 pages so you need not read a long report if you don't wish to do so). Here is a sample request for the reports shown in the images below:

Dear ,

I am

This past Wednesday evening, LEAP heard from the developer of MAP tests about how they work and what they measure.  We m...
04/12/2019

This past Wednesday evening, LEAP heard from the developer of MAP tests about how they work and what they measure. We mainly focused on how parents could obtain detailed reports for their child. But the data is so much more valuable than that. Because it can be used to compare the effectiveness between two alternatives (confirmed by NWEA reps in the Q&A), it can answer the following questions:

Which is more effective: differentiated instruction in a heterogeneous classroom or tracking by ability level?

Do black students learn more when they are taught by black teachers vs non-black teachers?

In elementary school, does allowing specific teachers to focus on a subject (2 5th-grade teachers instruct all 5th-grade students on math) generate more student growth in that subject?

Are smaller class sizes more effective?

How much knowledge do students lose over the summer?

Are gifted students being challenged? In all schools?

Are there significant differences in how students learn from various teachers?

Are students below grade level making significant progress?

Do teachers become more effective between 3 years of experience and 20 years of experience?

Do minority students (black, Asian, Hispanic or white - since we have a majority-minority population now) have high achievement scores from the outset (in the 2nd grade) or does this develop over time as they work toward Academy admissions?

During the LEAP meeting, the LCPS Minority Student Achievement Advisory Committee - MSAAC was discussing achievement gaps with Supt Williams. We respectfully suggest you all may have been attending the wrong meeting to get the answers you seek because those achievement gaps are just that - they ONLY analyze achievement scores at the end of the year. MAP data has achievement AND growth data to show how each student is progressing. Combined with classroom enrollment and student/teacher demographics, any researcher can answer all of the questions above. We say "any researcher" because to date, LCPS either hasn't analyzed these questions or hasn't shared the answers with the public. Certainly, one might hope if the new school board wishes to implement policy changes, they might try to support it with actual data from an 80,000+ student population. LCPS now has datasets from among one of the largest school divisions in the country.

We would encourage all the members of MSAAC, LCPS Special Education Advisory Committee, and other Loudoun educational groups to request the data and research answers themselves. And to push LCPS to conduct research using its own data and share it publicly. Every modern successful organization uses data and makes data-driven decisions. There is no reason we should allow valuable data to sit in a database unused.

- https://www.facebook.com/LCPS.LEAP/posts/2397524200469688

Chris Croll for Loudoun Families, Andrew Hoyler for School Board, Atoosa Reaser for School Board, Ram Venkatachalam for School Board - Blue Ridge District, Sisson for Schools, Joe Newcomer, Jenna Alexander for School Board

Watch a recording of the April 10, 2018 meeting online here. Holly Sears & Jeanine Edwards of NWEA explained how MAP tests work for Loudoun County students. Highlights include:

- Parents can get detailed reports of their student's progress including areas for improvement (parents must ask for the student profile shown below as your schools won't give these to you unless you ask for them - tomorrow, we will post a sample FOIA request to assist parents in obtaining these reports)

- For the cost of 1 hr of instructional time (~$11/year), students and parents get accurate, nationally-normed competency scores while education administrators get data that can be used to evaluate curriculum and instructional effectiveness

- Parents can use the MAP scores on Khan Academy over the summer (or anytime) to obtain individualized, recommended exercises for their student to prevent summer lag

See the video here: https://zoom.us/recording/play/GYf7_28-CZv6TRoSurFrbXS4m5wLp4l7bNQV6zDNNsFLHTrGN7ySbkXdqIrWJQ_1?autoplay=true&startTime=1554936906000

Chris Croll for Loudoun Families, Andrew Hoyler for School Board, Jenna Alexander for School Board, Ram Venkatachalam for School Board - Blue Ridge District, Sisson for Schools, LCPS Minority Student Achievement Advisory Committee - MSAAC, LCPS Special Education Advisory Committee, Legacy Elementary PTO, Seldens Landing PTA, Belmont Ridge PTO, Steuart W. Weller Elementary School

Watch a recording of the April 10, 2018 meeting online here.  Holly Sears & Jeanine Edwards of NWEA explained how MAP te...
04/11/2019

Watch a recording of the April 10, 2018 meeting online here. Holly Sears & Jeanine Edwards of NWEA explained how MAP tests work for Loudoun County students. Highlights include:

- Parents can get detailed reports of their student's progress including areas for improvement (parents must ask for the student profile shown below as your schools won't give these to you unless you ask for them - tomorrow, we will post a sample FOIA request to assist parents in obtaining these reports)

- For the cost of 1 hr of instructional time (~$11/year), students and parents get accurate, nationally-normed competency scores while education administrators get data that can be used to evaluate curriculum and instructional effectiveness

- Parents can use the MAP scores on Khan Academy over the summer (or anytime) to obtain individualized, recommended exercises for their student to prevent summer lag

See the video here: https://zoom.us/recording/play/GYf7_28-CZv6TRoSurFrbXS4m5wLp4l7bNQV6zDNNsFLHTrGN7ySbkXdqIrWJQ_1?autoplay=true&startTime=1554936906000

Chris Croll for Loudoun Families, Andrew Hoyler for School Board, Jenna Alexander for School Board, Ram Venkatachalam for School Board - Blue Ridge District, Sisson for Schools, LCPS Minority Student Achievement Advisory Committee - MSAAC, LCPS Special Education Advisory Committee, Legacy Elementary PTO, Seldens Landing PTA, Belmont Ridge PTO, Steuart W. Weller Elementary School

LEAP is live with Holly Sears and Jeanine Edwards from NWEA discussing MAP tests. Join us on Zoom: https://zoom.us/j/235...
04/10/2019
Join our Cloud HD Video Meeting now

LEAP is live with Holly Sears and Jeanine Edwards from NWEA discussing MAP tests.

Join us on Zoom: https://zoom.us/j/235041611

One tap mobile phone access:
+16465588656,,235041611# US (New York)
+17207072699,,235041611# US

Dial by your location
+1 646 558 8656 US (New York)
+1 720 707 2699 US
Meeting ID: 235 041 611

Zoom is the leader in modern enterprise video communications, with an easy, reliable cloud platform for video and audio conferencing, chat, and webinars across mobile, desktop, and room systems. Zoom Rooms is the original software-based conference room solution used around the world in board, confer...

Join LEAP tonight at 7pm online to learn about Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) tests used by LCPS to measure student...
04/10/2019
LCPS LEAP Presentation 4.10.19.pdf

Join LEAP tonight at 7pm online to learn about Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) tests used by LCPS to measure student growth. Guest speakers Holly Sears and Jeanine Edwards from the manufacturer (NWEA) will guide us through how the test works and the MAP reports that are available to parents to help your student maximize their growth.

This is an online only meeting. Use the following to join us.

Topic: LEAP Meeting - NWEA MAP Reports
Time: Apr 10, 2019 7:00 PM Montreal

Join us on Zoom: https://zoom.us/j/235041611

One tap mobile phone access:
+16465588656,,235041611# US (New York)
+17207072699,,235041611# US

Dial by your location
+1 646 558 8656 US (New York)
+1 720 707 2699 US
Meeting ID: 235 041 611

Here is an advanced read-ahead of tonight's presentation: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1swI8nfyNnAfh7EHuyLM56IHJAW15SRki/view?usp=sharing

P.S. All LCPS employees and school board members are welcome as always. And don't worry, we won't tell LCPS senior staff if you join us.

Recording of the April 3, 2019 LEAP Meeting discussing Performance-Based Teacher Compensation in DC Public SchoolsChanta...
04/04/2019
Video Conferencing, Web Conferencing, Webinars, Screen Sharing

Recording of the April 3, 2019 LEAP Meeting discussing Performance-Based Teacher Compensation in DC Public Schools

Chantae Campbell and Allison Rhode of DC Public Schools gave our parent group (LEAP) an excellent presentation on DC's performance-based compensation system. The big benefits for top-performing teachers were:

1. Greater compensation
2. More opportunities and fewer observations

For the DC Public Schools and students/parents, the big benefits were:

A. Improved student achievement
B. Higher retention of experienced and highly effective teachers

For any Loudoun citizen interested in how a neighboring district has implemented such a compensation system for nearly 10 years, check out their presentation below:

- https://zoom.us/recording/play/PEtqKkxZtkrBUJ1Bo2OSLK2tHkJRRg6ROghWifRS6r6HyM5hcHqdiBMjFnleIidY?autoplay=true&startTime=1554331451000

Zoom is the leader in modern enterprise video communications, with an easy, reliable cloud platform for video and audio conferencing, chat, and webinars across mobile, desktop, and room systems. Zoom Rooms is the original software-based conference room solution used around the world in board, confer...

A practical and caring approach
04/03/2019
Indiana school district turns unused cafeteria food into take-home meals for kids

A practical and caring approach

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WSBT) - An Indiana school district is taking steps to make sure kids have enough to eat. Elkhart Community Schools students usually get breakfast and lunch at school, but on the weekends at home, they may be without food. That's where the South Bend-based non-profit Cultivate comes...

A reminder of our LEAP meeting tonight at 7pm (Wed, April 3) to discuss teacher compensation policies with DC Public Sch...
04/03/2019
Join our Cloud HD Video Meeting now

A reminder of our LEAP meeting tonight at 7pm (Wed, April 3) to discuss teacher compensation policies with DC Public Schools' Chantae Campbell. We will be in-person at the Ashburn Library (Meeting Room C).

Or join online or on the phone using the Zoom info below.

Here is a link to Ms. Campbell's presentation: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1AO4nBugdY5072t18gpj47F7dzOQfn3YX/view?usp=sharing

Zoom meeting link: https://zoom.us/j/834426558

Phone dial-in: (720) 707 2699
Meeting ID: 834 426 558

Look forward to seeing you there.

Zoom is the leader in modern enterprise video communications, with an easy, reliable cloud platform for video and audio conferencing, chat, and webinars across mobile, desktop, and room systems. Zoom Rooms is the original software-based conference room solution used around the world in board, confer...

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