MAESP Priority Issues
The Missouri Association of Elementary School Principals (MAESP) represents elementary and middle level school principals in the state of Missouri. MAESP maintains a current set of resolutions that cover a multitude of issues that impact public schools and school leadership. The following issues have emerged as priorities for MAESP and have been identified as focus areas for 2016.
1. New Standards - MAESP supports the continuing development of the Missouri Learning Standards as a comprehensive, rigorous and vertically aligned framework for student learning. Careful consideration should be given to ensure that adopted standards are commensurate with the development of young children when determining grade level expectations.
2. Assessments – MAESP supports stabilizing the Missouri Assessment Program to provide schools the opportunity to determine local curriculum revisions and refine the online testing experience for students. Any state-mandated assessments should be limited in time required, aligned to the Missouri Learning Standards, primarily used for determining gaps in district curriculum and instruction, and results should be considered a “snapshot” of student performance in each content area. MAESP opposes the use of student performance data from the state assessment as a significant factor for determining teacher or principal effectiveness.
3. School Funding - The 2015-2016 formula remains underfunded by approximately $500 million. MAESP supports full funding of the Missouri Foundation Formula and restoring funding for categoricals including transportation, Parents As Teachers, professional development, etc., that have been cut in recent years.
4. High Quality Teacher Shortage - MAESP is concerned about an impending shortage of a high quality teaching corps and opposes legislation that would exacerbate the issue by limiting local control over teaching and learning, increasing the influence of high-stakes testing, reducing current retirement benefits or incentives, or regulating the profession in ways that would discourage the best and brightest from entering the profession.
5. Principal Professional Development - MAESP supports federal, state, and local funding specifically dedicated for principal professional development. Principals readily spend identified professional development funds on teacher development, but are reluctant to use those same funds to meet their own professional development needs. Professional development opportunities for principals should be provided during the contracted day and the contractual year; and separate funding should be identified and specifically allocated to equitably support principal growth and development.