Board of Regents
MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING
BOARD OF REGENTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN SYSTEM
Held in 1820 Van Hise Hall
Thursday, November 4, 2010
Authority to Seek a Waiver of s.16.855 Wis. Stats., to Allow Selection Through a Request for Proposal Process of a Construction Manager-at-Risk for the Kenwood Interdisciplinary Research Complex Phase I Project, UW-Milwaukee. 21
MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING
BOARD OF REGENTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN SYSTEM
Held in 1820 Van Hise Hall
Thursday, November 4, 2010
– President Pruitt presiding –
PRESENT: Regents Jeffrey Bartell, Mark Bradley, Judith Crain, Danae Davis, John Drew, Anthony Evers, Michael Falbo, Thomas Loftus, Edmund Manydeeds, Charles Pruitt, Jessica Schwalenberg, Brent Smith, José Vásquez, Aaron Wingad, and Betty Womack
UNABLE TO ATTEND: Regents Thomas Loftus, Michael Spector, and David Walsh
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President Pruitt began the meeting by recognizing the presence of Governor-elect Scott Walker. Mr. Walker was elected Governor on November 2, 2010. Regents and other meeting attendees greeted him with a standing ovation.
President Pruitt announced that the Board of Regents would like to recognize an extraordinary event that occurred earlier this year in Green Bay, LZ Lambeau. He said that the recognition is especially fitting with Veteran’s Day approaching on November 11th. President Pruitt turned to Regent Falbo, a U.S. Army veteran, to present a resolution of appreciation.
Regent Falbo said that he was honored to present the resolution of appreciation for LZ Lambeau, an event that spanned three days in May 2010 (and three years in planning), in conjunction with the airing of Wisconsin Vietnam War Stories on Wisconsin Public Television. LZ Lambeau was like no other event held before in the country. It is now being emulated by other states as an important way to pay tribute to the service and sacrifice of our country’s Vietnam-era veterans, and all veterans. “LZ” means “landing zone,” the place where troops were dropped off from helicopters, usually a clearing in the jungle. For three days at Lambeau Field, the field was the clearing, where veterans met to tell their stories.
Regent Falbo recognized guests from the organizations that sponsored LZ Lambeau: James Steinbach, Director of Television at Wisconsin Public Television; Jon Miskowski, Director of Development at Wisconsin Public Television; Malcolm Brett, UW-Extension; Gene Purcell, Educational Communications Board; Ken Black, Secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs; Ellsworth Brown, Director of the Wisconsin Historical Society; and Mick Dern, who did the interviews for the project. The organizations these individuals represent joined together to sponsor LZ Lambeau, in conjunction with the Green Bay Packers, Brown County, and more than two dozen veterans’ organizations statewide. Their efforts are deeply appreciated. Regent Falbo also recognized James Gill, staff photographer at Wisconsin Public Television, who created a powerful portrait exhibit of Wisconsin Vietnam Veterans that has been displayed across the state and traveled to Green Bay for LZ Lambeau Weekend.
Regent Falbo said that Gary Wetzel, from South Milwaukee, who was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor in 1968, was unfortunately not able to attend the Board meeting because he was unable to take off from work. Regent Falbo said that Mr. Wetzel extends his appreciation for the project.
Regent Falbo then read the resolution of appreciation:
Resolution of Appreciation in Honor of LZ Lambeau
WHEREAS more than 165,000 Wisconsin veterans served in the armed forces during the Vietnam War, putting away their uniforms while holding closely to their memories, many reluctant to share their stories when they returned during a time of public controversy about the war; and
WHEREAS the Wisconsin Vietnam War Stories project gave voice to Wisconsin’s Vietnam-era veterans, allowing them to share their stories publicly and with their families; and LZ Lambeau events created a place for the entire state to thank these veterans for their service; and
WHEREAS through broadcasts on public and commercial television in Wisconsin, on Midwest PBS stations and streaming on the Internet, Wisconsin Vietnam War Stories reached more than 100,000 viewers and will be distributed to PBS stations across the country to further extend the reach of the documentary; and
WHEREAS on the weekend of May 20 through 22, 2010, an estimated 70,000 people – Vietnam veterans, their family members, friends, and neighbors – traveled to Green Bay for three days of tributes, memorials, reunions, and camaraderie; more than 27,000 people attended the Tribute Ceremony inside Lambeau Field, which was broadcast live on Wisconsin Public Radio; 1,100 volunteers contributed their time; and thousands of Wisconsin citizens participated in community events across the state; and
WHEREAS throughout the Lambeau Field grounds and in the Green Bay community, exhibits, displays, and presentations brought together veterans, families, friends, and students to share the veterans’ stories and feel pride in their service; and
WHEREAS, LZ Lambeau and Wisconsin Vietnam War Stories connected the people of the state through a unique partnership of the Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs, the Wisconsin Historical Society, and Wisconsin Public Television that has inspired citizens in other states to follow Wisconsin’s lead;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED that the University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents salutes all Wisconsin Vietnam and Vietnam-era veterans and the LZ Lambeau organizers who gathered, collected and shared veterans’ stories for this and future generations, honoring their service and sacrifice.
Regent Falbo presented the resolution to Mr. Steinbach who, rather than making remarks, showed a brief video overview of the LZ Lambeau event. After the video, President Pruitt recognized President Reilly, who expressed appreciation for the event and the work of Wisconsin Public Television.
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President Reilly then welcomed Governor-elect Walker, saying that during the campaign, many UW campuses hosted debates and other events where voters could learn about the candidates and their viewpoints. Student leaders organized voter registration drives, and many UW faculty members provided expert analysis. Governor-elect Walker visited many UW campuses during the campaign.
President Pruitt formally welcomed Governor-elect Walker on behalf of the Board of Regents. President Pruitt said that with the exception of Regent Tony Evers, the Regents at the table were appointed to the Board by the Governor-elect’s predecessor. However, when the Regents walk through the door and into the meeting room, they all cease being Democrats or Republicans and are simply Regents of one of the finest public university systems in America.
This university system is one of Wisconsin’s most cherished assets. President Pruitt said that the Board looks forward to working, in partnership with Governor-elect Walker, to protect and enhance this asset in the months and years to come.
In these tough economic times, the university system can be vital in helping the Governor-elect achieve his goal of creating 250,000 more jobs in Wisconsin, President Pruitt said. The university can be a partner in growing the state’s economy by serving as a catalyst and an economic engine in making the state stronger and more competitive.
Offering sincere and heartfelt congratulations, and thanking the Governor-elect for taking time out of an incredibly full schedule, President Pruitt invited Mr. Walker to speak to the Board.
Governor-elect Walker expressed his thanks to President Pruitt, President Reilly, the Regents, and all other friends and supporters of the university in attendance at the meeting. He said that it was an honor to join the Board for its meeting, and he wished Vice President Spector, who was not present at the meeting, a speedy recovery.
Governor-elect Walker expressed his gratitude for the gracious calls he and his wife, respectively, had received from Governor and Mrs. Doyle and for their offers of help in the transition. Mr. Walker said that he looks forward to working with the Board of Regents and campus leaders, and he agreed with President Pruitt about the shared concern about the state. He said that he visited all but one of the UW campuses.
Governor-elect Walker acknowledged Regent Falbo’s leadership on LZ Lambeau, the War Stories project, and in general. He expressed appreciation for Regent Falbo’s friendship and leadership and praised him for his role in turning around the financial fortunes of the Milwaukee Public Museum.
The Governor-elect also acknowledged medal-of-honor-winner Gary Wetzel, who was due to attend the meeting, saying that Mr. Wetzel appreciated and valued the LZ Lambeau event. Mr. Walker congratulated the UW System for its involvement in that event, as well as for the newly-announced Veterans Portal, which will be a tremendous asset for veterans.
Discussing the challenges of the potential budget deficit of nearly $3 billion, Governor-elect Walker said that great challenges bring great opportunities. Referring to UW campuses he visited, with their innovation and creativity, the Governor-elect said that he will be calling upon the university for help. Mr. Walker expressed support for the university’s goal of more graduates and said that it will be necessary to find ways, not just with dollars, but with flexibility, innovation, and creativity, to apply existing dollars in the best way possible to meet the goals for more graduates on campuses across the state. He expressed interest in working with the university as he prepares to take office, and after, to work on innovations.
Finally, the Governor-elect mentioned the Discovery Center at UW-Stout, and said that there will be new ways to apply the campuses to meeting his campaign goal of 250,000 new jobs. He described a new state Department of Commerce, saying that UW System campuses will be part of his focus on economic development. During discussions about jobs, UW campuses, technical schools, and others involved in higher education will be “at the table” with the Department of Commerce. He said that the university system is a powerful asset for prospective employers, and he said that he looks forward to working with the university in economic development.
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President Pruitt, turning to the two policy-discussion items on the Board’s agenda, said that one-day, “deep-dive,” discussion-only sessions provide the opportunity to spend more time with significant topics without having to make any formal decisions about them. The “deep-dive” sessions allow Regents to ask questions on larger issues, and to inform the decisions they will make on other occasions.
President Pruitt introduced the two major topics for discussion: (1) the notion of “brain drain” and “brain gain” in Wisconsin, and how that intersects with the mission of the UW System; and (2) the state’s K-12 system, which has an enormous impact on the success of the UW System. Both are complex topics.
As for the morning’s “brain drain” and “brain gain” topic, President Pruitt noted that he and President Reilly heard questions, while traveling the state to advocate for the importance of More Graduates, the Growth Agenda, and Principles for Progress and Prosperity, about whether college graduates are leaving the state after the state pays some of the cost of educating them.
President Pruitt said that UW System Administration staff had been asked to present the best available data about these issues. As a Board of Regents with responsibility to set policies and strategic directions for the university, it is important that the Board base its decisions on facts, data, research, and evidence when making policy, just as faculty members do in their research.
Recently, Professor Ken Goldstein, of the Political Science Department at UW-Madison, conducted a study for the Wisconsin Policy Research Institute. He polled 3,300 Wisconsin adults in the summer of 2010 and asked them their opinions on the brain drain. Professor Goldstein found that 62 percent of those surveyed believe that the best and the brightest are leaving Wisconsin to work elsewhere. That, in turn, prompted the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel to headline their article on the survey to say, “Polling Finds Worry Over Brain Drain: Majority in Wisconsin See Talent Leaving.”
President Pruitt said that one of his political science professors, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, was fond of saying, “Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts.” When anecdotes and hearsay are starting to sway the public debate about higher education, or when a collection of people’s opinions are being represented as reality, the university has an obligation to inform Wisconsin’s citizens about the facts.
President Pruitt turned to President Reilly to further introduce the conversation about “brain drain” and “brain gain.” President Reilly first drew Regents’ attention to a news release about the new Veterans Wisconsin Education Portal, which Governor-elect Walker had mentioned. This portal, which is a joint venture of UW System, UW-Extension, and the Wisconsin Technical College System, is designed to help returning veterans transition smoothly from military service to college life, by providing them with a single point-of-entry to all of the resources, services, and benefits available to them through the UW and Technical College systems. Taking the first step is often the most difficult, so this new portal should make the process easier.
Returning to “brain drain/brain gain” issues, President Reilly, noted that in recent months, significant time and attention had been focused on the More Graduates for Wisconsin initiative and the UW System’s efforts to produce an additional 80,000 well-prepared UW graduates by the year 2025. He said that this is an important goal for both the individual and collective well-being of the state’s residents. The goal is ambitious, but also necessary and achievable. Reaching the goal will require the university’s commitment to its success, as well as a commitment from the state of Wisconsin in the form of additional state resources and greater management flexibility.
As to the issue of “brain drain” and “brain gain,” the ebb and flow of the state’s educated citizens in and out of Wisconsin, several recent polls suggest that the majority of Wisconsin residents believe that the state’s “best and brightest” graduates leave the state to find work -- the perceived “brain drain.” Other studies, meanwhile, indicate the real issue is that Wisconsin lags in attracting college-educated workers from elsewhere, a lack of “brain gain.” President Reilly introduced Heather Kim, Associate Vice President for the Office of Policy Analysis and Research, to describe the extent to which the “brain drain/brain gain” issue is real, or misperception.
Associate Vice President Kim, thanking campuses for the data and photos used in the presentation, began by saying that she would be presenting data on facts, rather than perceptions.
Referring to slides showing data based on alumni-address information from UW institutions in 2007, for alumni who received a UW bachelor's degree during 2003-04 or 2004-05, Dr. Kim said that a U.S. address was available for 93 percent of alumni. The address data show that 81 percent of the alumni who were Wisconsin residents when enrolled remained in Wisconsin after graduation. Thirteen percent of non-resident students remained in Wisconsin after graduation; non-resident students contribute to the state economy and educational quality, and they pay the full cost of their education.
Focusing on Wisconsin-resident alumni, Associate Vice President Kim showed a chart with data by institution. Among the findings was the conclusion that while alumni of UW-Madison tend to remain in Wisconsin at a lower rate, given UW-Madison’s size, the number of its graduates who work in the state is significant.
Regarding demographics, on average, alumni who remain in Wisconsin tend to be slightly older than those who migrate to other states. Also, for Wisconsin-resident graduates, Hispanic/Latino(a), African Americans and Southeast Asians are more likely to remain in Wisconsin; other Asians are less likely to remain.
The data show no meaningful differences in academic performance between the alumni who remain in Wisconsin and those who leave. However, graduates with degrees in education and in the health professions tend to remain in Wisconsin at higher rates, suggesting an opportunity to retain more engineering graduates.
The UW System is one of the major economic contributors to the state. Associate Vice President Kim cited the UW’s annual budget of $5.6 billion for FY2010-11; state funding of $1.1 billion; enrollment of more than 178,000 students; a workforce of more than 32,000 faculty and staff; and an economic impact of more than $10 billion annually.
Associate Vice President Kim said that distinguished UW alumni in a variety of fields make a positive impact as the leaders of Wisconsin, the nation, and the world, and she showed a list of distinguished and successful alumni who left the state, some of whom eventually returned, and others of whom contributed to the state even without returning.
Dr. Kim used case studies to show the efforts that institutions are making to track UW alumni. For example, a survey of the UW-Green Bay class of 2009 showed that of the respondents who indicated the location of their employer, 86 percent are employed in Wisconsin. A 2009 analysis of residency patterns for UW-Madison alumni receiving bachelor’s degrees within the last ten years showed that overall, 51 percent live in Wisconsin; of the alumni who were Wisconsin residents as students, 69 percent live in Wisconsin.
Associate Vice President Kim also showed slides emphasizing the need for enhanced in-migration. Data from the population of adults aged 25 to 39 illustrate that while Wisconsin is doing relatively well at retention, the state should work on attracting adults with a bachelor’s or higher degree. More, better-paying jobs are necessary to attract these adults. More job growth is projected in education and health care, but not much growth in engineering jobs is expected. The university can continue to work with other sectors to make the state more attractive to college-educated adults from other states.
To summarize, Associate Vice President Kim reported that: (1) four out of five UW alumni who were Wisconsin residents as students remain in the state; (2) UW alumni make a positive impact regionally, nationally and globally; (3) there are no meaningful differences in academic performance between UW alumni who remain in Wisconsin and those who leave; and (4) Wisconsin does relatively well at retaining college graduates, while it should continue its efforts to attract college graduates from other states.
Associate Vice President Kim then posed questions for consideration: (1) what should be the UW System’s role in pursuing a “brain gain” strategy for Wisconsin, and what can the UW System do to communicate that role to the public; (2) how can the UW System help stimulate job growth (particularly in STEM fields) to strengthen the state’s economy; (3) how can the UW System strengthen relations between Wisconsin employers and UW institutions to enhance student achievement and employment opportunities for students after graduation; (4) what are the best ways to enroll and serve more place-bound working adults and under-represented minorities who are more likely to remain in Wisconsin after earning a degree; and (5) what more can the UW System do to help build the stronger communities that attract employers and a college-educated workforce.
President Pruitt suggested three possible areas for discussion: (1) questions about the data; (2) thoughts on the questions Associate Vice President Kim posed at the end of the presentation; and (3) questions about additional information that would be useful in the future.
Regent Bartell asked a question about the meaning of “stronger communities,” a phrase denoted in one of Associate Vice President Kim’s questions. He asked if this refers to geographic, occupational, age-related or other communities. Dr. Kim said that this is a comprehensive notion of community, as envisioned by the Growth Agenda. President Reilly elaborated upon Ms. Kim’s remarks by saying that Wisconsin has more medium-sized cities than Minnesota, for example, and in these cities, there is often a university campus. A university campus may bring an atmosphere that people like and that will attract people, including faculty.
Regent Bradley thanked Associate Vice President Kim for the presentation and asked about the effect of climate on attracting young people to the state or encouraging them to stay. Dr. Kim replied that migration patterns are complex; even in looking at the top ten states for in-migration, no patterns appear to exist. Regent Bartell suggested that identifying the aspects of communities that attract people would be useful; weather may be one factor, and the arts climate may be another. Art proliferates even in smaller communities in Wisconsin. Identifying the factors that help define community would be helpful for developing those factors.
Regent Vásquez asked about age-related factors. Ms. Kim said Wisconsin ranks high for having an older-adult (65 and over) population, rather than a younger population. Wisconsin does better at retaining older adults than at attracting older adults. She said she does not have data on the factors that influence these decisions.
Regent Falbo suggested that placing UW graduates globally is not a bad thing. To attract people from other states, creating more job opportunities is necessary.
Regent Davis asked for clarification about in- and out-migration. Dr. Kim clarified that this slide was for Wisconsin in general, not for UW graduates. Regent Davis said that it took some time to change public perceptions about the university; it may be useful to discuss the strategy for changing people’s perceptions about “brain drain.” It is bad for the state to have a reputation that is not based on reality. President Pruitt noted, in response, that if the university is asking the state to invest in more graduates, it seems reasonable that expecting graduates to remain in the state would be one of the returns on the state’s investment.
Chancellor Wells, noting that Wisconsin lags in the percentage of adults with bachelor’s degrees, said that Wisconsin is in the top ten of states for the percentage of adults with associate’s degrees. Changing the perception of an associate’s degree as a terminal degree is important. Also, Wisconsin companies say that they like UW graduates, but the graduates do not want to move; in the global economy, it is shortsighted to assume that graduates should stay here.
Regent Crain said that older adults tend to stay in the state because they have more complicated lives and less flexibility. Understanding the influences that keep younger people in the state is critical.
President Reilly commented that reporters have asked him and President Pruitt about the university’s goal with respect to graduates’ staying in Wisconsin. If 81 percent of graduates are staying in Wisconsin, is the goal to increase this? President Reilly said that the university is an import/export business, and even graduates who move away can give back to the state. President Pruitt commented that the university imports faculty and staff, which is a contribution the university makes.
Regent Drew commented on the high percentage of associate degree holders, and he said he would speculate that these degree holders stay in the state in high numbers. This underscores the importance of encouraging these people to work on bachelors’ degrees.
Regent Evers posed a question about what the data would show if the data excluded educators. He wondered what national data would show. Associate Vice President Kim suggested that this is something that could be examined.
Regent Smith commented that a continuing goal is to graduate more students. It is very important to dispel the myth of the “brain drain.” He stressed the importance of developing a strategy for dispelling the myth. Also, it would be useful to learn more about people’s reasons for staying or leaving the state.
Regent Falbo said it would be important to answer the question that President Reilly raised, about defining the university’s goal. Being viewed as a global institution that places talented people throughout the world is positive.
Regent Vásquez commented on a misperception in Milwaukee about crime rates. Changing the perception required a positive approach. He said that in the present instance, the UW System does not need to correct something that it is doing; it is perceptions that are the problem. The university should focus on the positive aspects of the university, such as job creation. The university is already succeeding. With the Governor’s help, the university can work to create more jobs.
Regent Drew asked about University of Minnesota and University of Iowa data. Associate Vice President Kim said that Wisconsin fares better than some other states, except Minnesota, in terms of retaining system graduates. Minnesota does slightly better than Wisconsin in retaining reciprocity students.
Regent Wingad said that he will leave the state after he graduates because his next opportunity is elsewhere. The university is an integral part of creating opportunity in the state, and job creation should be pursued as a strategy.
Regent Schwalenberg said that higher education contributes to developing people, who need both “roots” and “wings.” Students need to develop confidence to grow, but also to place roots here, through a dynamic job market, so they are more likely to come here.
Regent Crain said that “brain gain” is not a good phrase. It should not be implied that brains are entirely dependent on educational level. She supports increased education, but the phrase is perhaps not a winning phrase for use in developing future strategies.
Chancellor Wells commented on the notion that the university needs an “offense.” Being an import/export business has appeal. The university is the recruiter and can develop talent for industry. The university makes a valuable contribution and does not need to be on the defense.
President Reilly noted the existence of UW alumni clubs in China. There is significant interest in the Chinese government’s gaining expertise in maintaining clean air and water while growing the economy. Some jobs Wisconsin creates will be as a result of the connections with China. The issue is a broad and complex one. President Pruitt added that it is important to continue to remind the state that the university helps the state through job creation and in other ways.
Chancellor Shields posed a rhetorical question about how, as a System, the university can work toward greater economic development. He commented that there are four economic development entities in southeastern Wisconsin, which increases the complexity of the issue.
Chancellor Gow commented that the data analysis refutes the perceptions of “brain drain.” If educated citizens leave Wisconsin, is the solution to not fund higher education? Surely, if that were the solution, people would not be drawn here or stay here. Strong higher education is needed for the future health of the state of Wisconsin.
President Pruitt thanked Associate Vice President Kim and others for the discussion, which provided food for thought.
The discussion concluded and the meeting was recessed at 11:50 a.m. The meeting reconvened at approximately 12:20 p.m.
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Regent Pruitt asked Board members to turn their attention to the K-12 pipeline, an issue that has been an important focus of the Education Committee under both Regent Crain and, before her, Regent Danae Davis. The future of higher education is inextricably linked to the future of the elementary and secondary school system.
President Pruitt turned to President Reilly to begin the conversation. President Reilly said that the mission of higher education consists of three parts: teaching, research, and service. Preparing youth for higher education is a shared responsibility; higher education and PK-12 are interdependent. The success of the UW System’s More Graduates for Wisconsin initiative depends heavily on the readiness of the state’s high school graduates for college-level work. In turn, that readiness depends on the quality of the teachers prepared by UW institutions. The two systems are inextricably linked.
The afternoon discussion focuses on Wisconsin’s K-12 Common Core State Standards Initiative, which is a state-led, and not a federal effort. The effort is a direct response to the growing national consensus that shared and more rigorous educational standards will help ensure that all students, regardless of where they live, have access to high-quality education, and are ready for college or the workforce after high school.
In June 2010, State Superintendent (and Regent) Tony Evers and the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI) joined many other states in formally adopting the Common Core State Standards for English language arts and mathematics. These standards are to provide comparable expectations across districts and states, and establish clear and consistent goals for what students are expected to learn in grades K through 12.
President Reilly referred Regents to the questions listed in their materials and also suggested two over-arching issues for consideration: (1) how will the better definition of “the bar” help improve student achievement for all students, and (2) what is the UW’s role in helping to ensure that happens.
President Reilly asked Regent Evers to continue the conversation. Regent Evers said that after 150 years, the first attempt to standardize educational expectations occurred under President Clinton. This concept disappeared until “No Child Left Behind,” which was an attempt at accountability; while not successful, this effort pointed out achievement gaps. Regent Evers said that there is benefit in having uniform expectations for children. For example, Algebra 2 in Crandon, Wisconsin should be the same as Algebra 2 in Los Angeles. It is unfair to students to expect them to start over if a family moves. In July 2009, Regent Evers said that he adopted the Common Core Standards, which are rigorous, internationally benchmarked, and send a message about higher expectations for students.
The Common Core State Standards: mandate student learning outcomes for every grade level; create a common language; and include measurement of instructional effectiveness, based on student testing. Federal funding is linked to the adoption, implementation, and accountability for the Common Core Standards.
Regent Evers said the Common Core Standards interconnect with many other issues, such as the PK-20 data system, which will provide sophisticated data to parents, teachers, and policy makers. New ways to provide instruction to students will be developed. Changes in the way teachers are prepared in Wisconsin will occur. New systems for evaluating students and principals will occur and will include the use of data in evaluation. Every student should have the opportunity to engage in dual-credit opportunities while in high school; a seamless system is necessary for this to happen.
Regent Evers asked Paul Sandrock, Assistant Director with DPI; Francine Tompkins, Director of UW System’s PK-16 Initiatives; and Assistant State Superintendent Jennifer Thayer to provide additional information
Mr. Sandrock, Assistant Director on the team of subject-matter experts working on the Common Core State Standards, spoke about college and career readiness goals. The Common Core State Standards are a state-level initiative of the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers; 48 states participated. Consistency in the Common Core State Standards is critical because of the mobility of students. The standards will be one of the mechanisms through which teachers are prepared to teach. It is important that educators take ownership of how the standards are implemented. One of the goals is to develop a deeper understanding on the part of students. Also, there will be greater equity in expectations for teachers and for student achievement.
Regarding the content of the Common Core State Standards, Mr. Sandrock provided a portrait of a student who meets the Common Core Standards. For example, an English Language Arts student will: demonstrate independence, build strong content knowledge, respond to the varying demands of audience, task, purpose, and discipline, comprehend as well as critique, value evidence, use technology and digital media strategically and capably, and come to understand other perspectives and cultures. The standards are all based on college and career-readiness anchor standards: reading, writing, speaking and listening, and language. The Common Core Standards combine English Language Arts with Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects, suggesting that literacy resides in other subject areas, along with English Language Arts. Technical Subjects are broadly defined, to include Music, Art and other applications.
Mr. Sandrock showed a slide contrasting the Common Core State Standards with the 1998 Wisconsin Model Academic Standards, which focused more on the “what” of learning, rather than the “how” – i.e., how the learning is demonstrated. He also described in detail the Standards for Mathematical Practice and for Mathematical Content and, as with English Language Arts, her detailed expected critical-thinking skills for students. The content spans all K-12 grade levels, with expectations for continual progress. The goal for common competencies in Math was to identify the mathematics needed in high school to graduate and to enter college-bearing coursework. Mathematics faculty and teachers from the UW System, Wisconsin Technical College System, Wisconsin Association of Independent Colleges and Universities, and Wisconsin high schools have been involved in this effort.
Wisconsin is one of 17 states that committed to join the SMARTER Balanced Assessment Consortium to determine how to assess the common core. SMARTER will develop a system of assessments, offering multiple data points to be accessed throughout the year. The SMARTER Balanced Assessment is due to be in place in four years.
In closing, Mr. Sandrock spoke about the partnerships needed for the Common Core State Standards effort to be successful. He showed a slide illustrating the various partnerships, including the involvement of higher education institutions.
Next, Francine Tompkins, Director of PK-16 Initiatives for UW System Administration, spoke about one of the teacher-quality initiatives currently underway in the UW System. The Student Teaching Assessment of Content Knowledge, or STACK, is significantly changing the way teacher candidates are assessed. STACK is just one element of a comprehensive system of assessment used by teacher educators.
The STACK initiative began in 2007 with funding from the U.S. Department of Education and matching funding from UW System Administration PK-16 grant resources. This initiative resulted from a partnership between UW System Administration and the American Association of State Colleges and Universities.
Dr. Tompkins said that the goal of the presentation would be to demonstrate how UW System teacher education programs are incorporating the Common Core State Standards and, as a result, are working to enhance K-12 student learning by improving the effectiveness of teachers.
An important aspect of the Common Core Standards work is the direct implications for K-12 curriculum and assessment and educational preparation practices. Three concepts have the most direct implications for the improvement of teacher preparation: the establishment of clear learning outcomes, the creation of a common language that specifies what students should know and be able to do, and a requirement to create assessments that align with the standards.
Teacher preparation programs have been under a great deal of scrutiny lately, Dr. Tompkins said. There is growing recognition of the critical difference that effective teachers play in improving student learning. Many national leaders and professional organizations are calling for significant changes in teacher preparation to help improve teacher effectiveness. Over the years, teacher preparation has been highly criticized for its inability to clearly demonstrate, through the use of valid and reliable assessments, that graduates have acquired the knowledge, skills and dispositions necessary to be effective in the classroom. Although assessment practices have improved, finding valid methods to link teacher performance with student learning outcomes continues to be a challenge.
Dr. Tompkins said that there has been significant debate about what is good assessment in teacher preparation. While there is general disagreement about specific methods, there is widespread agreement about the limitations of most current assessment practices: (1) the elements of teaching that are assessed are not based on a consensus of what effective teaching “looks like;” (2) those who evaluate teacher candidates, including university supervisors and cooperating teachers, often are not trained to use the evaluation instruments, leading to a lack of consistency in ratings; (3) evaluations tend to focus on either a narrow standardized test of content knowledge or general observable teaching behaviors, with neither approach demonstrating a connection between teaching performance and student learning; and (4) assessment data have little value in documenting the efficacy of the teacher candidate.
The focus of recent changes is to focus on learning outcomes, rather than curricular inputs, with program quality judged on the ability of teachers to perform, rather than an accumulation of credits. UW System institutions geared up to bring their programs into compliance with the Department-of-Public-Instruction reforms implemented in 2004.
Building on the work initiated by DPI, UW System faculty are taking a leadership role across the state, Ms. Tompkins said. Since 2006, UW System has sponsored or co-sponsored four major statewide Teacher Quality Conferences, which have brought together educators from public and private/independent colleges and universities, as well as representatives from DPI, the Wisconsin Educational Association, K-12 teachers, and other educational leaders.
A major outcome of these conferences has been that educators established six major principles to guide their work. The essence of the principles is the shared belief that Wisconsin’s educators must be the leaders of reform, and all efforts to improve accountability in teacher preparation must serve to advance student learning.
As a result of these changes, Dr. Tompkins said, partnerships across the state have been strengthened, and the STACK initiative has been created. STACK is an assessment system that is grounded in the content standards. The Common Core State Standards are a recent development, but Wisconsin has long had Model Academic Standards, which were used to guide the work. The STACK assessment tools and process were developed by faculty in math and science, education faculty, and middle and high school math and science teachers, working in collaboration with state and national experts. Substantial funding has been provided by the U.S. Department of Education.
While the major outcome of the project is the creation of an assessment instrument, STACK is part of a more complex assessment system that includes a wide sampling and evaluation of teacher-candidate performance throughout the course of their preparation. STACK focuses on the student-teaching experience, which for most education students includes a minimum of 18 weeks of teaching in a classroom.
Dr. Tompkins said that the design of the STACK instrument and associated assessment processes, are intended to increase the effectiveness of teachers by clearly documenting their ability to understand the central concepts of the disciplines they teach and show how they create effective learning experiences that make the content meaningful for all students. The STACK assessment will yield data that has the potential to demonstrate the link between the teaching event and student learning. By using processes that are valid and reliable, data will be available to guide reform in teacher preparation.
Looking ahead to the future, Dr. Tompkins said that campuses are already redesigning their content-methods courses to emphasize the content standards. With the recent adoption of the Common Core State Standards, the current tool will need to be revised to align with the new standards. Work will be expanded into other content areas, with attention focused on completing the link between teaching and student learning.
To initiate follow-up discussion of the Common Core Standards and Teacher Education, Senior Vice President Martin referred Regents to the policy questions included in the Board’s packets and also invited questions.
Regent Bradley asked about interim assessment of students and what steps are taken if a student is found to not be meeting standards. Assistant Superintendent Thayer responded that a developing initiative will help determine what steps are to be taken when an interim assessment shows that a student is struggling, or is an advanced learner.
Regent Womack said that it is important to address the capacity of the entire PK-16 system to deliver. It is not enough to simply adopt another set of standards. Looking at teacher qualification, and how content is delivered in the classroom, is vital. Also, Regent Womack asked about international assessments, because students are being educated to take their place in the world. A positive correlation between teacher effectiveness and student learning is essential to examine; she indicated she is pleased that teacher preparation is being examined.
Regent Danae Davis, commenting on recent discussions about a summit on improving educational performance, said that there is energy focused on standards, and she asked how the various efforts will be coordinated and who will be accountable. The new standards sound as though they may lead to more testing, and the effort should be about more than this. She also asked about the community voice; there needs to be buy-in and inclusion, with consideration given to how all who have been working on these issues are involved in moving ahead on the standards.
Regent Evers, responding to Regent Davis’s questions and concerns, said that accountability for the new standards will be less of an issue than in the past, because more data will be available and will be transparent. Regent Evers said that he will be held accountable. Setting up systems of accountability may not be necessary. For example, teacher- and principal-evaluation systems will be based on student data. Data also will be available on PK-12 students’ success in college.
Senior Vice President Martin added that student-learning data will be linked to teacher and student effectiveness and to the schools where the teachers were prepared. This data will be available to determine where improvement is needed.
As to testing, Regent Evers said that he believes that students will feel less tested in the future; testing will be online and will be viewed as part of regular instructional practice. The lines between instruction and testing will blur.
Regent Crain commented that the discussion of these issues is very important. It is important to combine accountability with support, to inspire a belief among teachers and school board members that success is possible. For the UW System, the importance of the System’s responsibility for schools of education cannot be overstated.
Regent Wingad suggested that innovation and implementing the standards model could seem to conflict. Mr. Sandrock, referring to his earlier remarks, said that the new standards imply a change in educational strategies to address both the “what” and the “how” of learning.
Regent Schwalenberg asked about differences in resources, community influences, and other factors that might affect teaching strategies. Paul Sandrock, saying this is an equity issue, responded that teaching preparation will be key. Instructional strategies must be adapted to individual student needs. Dr. Tompkins said that implementation of the standards in the classroom and continuing education for teachers will be crucial issues.
Regent Womack asked if DPI has considered the time and space issues related to secondary education. Seven-hour school days are common, for example; should areas such as this be re-examined? Regent Evers said that they should be. School districts sometimes assume that some aspects of school operations are requirements, when they are not. A new categorical aid program, if passed during the budget process, would focus on resources for schools with less-than-adequate graduation rates.
Regent Davis spoke about ratings of schools to help parents make informed decisions about schools. Data are already available about some schools; she asked whether methods used at schools that are already doing well could be replicated.
Vice Chancellor Earns of UW-Oshkosh asked what work has been done to align student learning outcomes for K-12 with UW System work in this area. Senior Vice President Martin said there is clear alignment with the shared learning goals. What is different about the new standards is that UW System has been very involved, both within Wisconsin and nationally, in the development of the Common Core Standards. Thus, UW System has taken responsibility in a way that may not have occurred in the past. The UW System is very interested in the SMARTER Better Assessment initiative, which Senior Vice President Martin said she believes has a potential to make a significant difference. Vice Chancellor Earns said that using the same language regarding “learning outcomes,” rather than “teaching to standards” would be helpful for making progress.
Regent Vásquez asked about the preparation of school administrators, in addition to the preparation of classroom teachers. Regent Evers said that new content guidelines have been developed over the past year for all administrators; relationship building, understanding political concerns, and resources are all included in the guidelines. Senior Vice President Martin said that more information on administrator preparation could be brought to the Education Committee at a future meeting. Regent Crain agreed with Regent Vásquez that administrative leadership is important to discuss.
President Reilly, in closing the discussion, talked about how critical the K-12 pipeline is for higher education. As a positive sign, President Reilly cited the summer 2010 meeting of state school officers and university system heads as collaboration which had not occurred previously. Thanking the presenters, President Reilly stressed the importance of continuing the dialog.
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President Pruitt called upon Regent Bartell to present the report of the Capital Planning and Budget Committee.
Regent Bartell began his report by saying that Resolution 9839, brought by UW-Eau Claire, requests authority to increase the scope and budget and construct the Children’s Center project. This $3.8 million project will provide a childcare facility to replace the existing facility that is located in the Campus School, a building that will be demolished to provide a site for the campus’ new Education Building.
The project’s predesign determined a needed scope increase to meet the programmatic and business needs of the center. The site was changed to a more suitable location and a budget increase was necessary to provide for both of those changes.
UW-Eau Claire student government approved a $17 per-academic-year increase in the Organized Activity Fee which began in the fall of 2010. Children’s-center tuition rates for student-parents will be about 40 percent less than market rates in the vicinity. Faculty and staff pay market rates.
Resolution 9840, brought by UW-Milwaukee, requests authority to seek a Building Commission waiver to allow the selection of a construction manager-at-risk through an RFP process, for the Kenwood Interdisciplinary Research Complex Phase I Project.
Regent Bartell said that this project is the initial phase of a multiphase major redevelopment in the southwest campus area and will provide space for research labs and core facilities, as well as instructional, collaboration, office, and support space.
The use of a construction manager-at-risk will provide a single manager who is experienced in the construction of research and advance technology projects and who can promote design strategies and construction methods that will resolve problems during the design phase before construction begins. In addition, by using a construction manager process, the project can begin with the funding available in 2011 and be completed with the balance of funding that becomes available in 2013.
Regent Bartell said that Resolution 9841 requests authority to construct 15 all- agency maintenance and repair projects at nine UW System institutions, totaling $15.7 million, including $5 million of program revenue. These projects include UW-Madison and UW-Platteville stormwater improvements and utility repairs on eight campuses.
Regent Bartell moved adoption of Resolutions 9839, 9840 and 9841, which were passed unanimously by the committee. Regent Drew seconded the motion. Regent Stan Davis requested that Resolution 9840 be removed from the consent agenda so that he could abstain from voting.
Resolutions 9839 and 9841 then were adopted on a unanimous voice vote:
That, upon the recommendation of the UW-Eau Claire Chancellor and the President of the University of Wisconsin System, the Design Report of the Children’s Center project be approved and authority be granted to: (1) increase the scope and budget of the project by $1,984,500 ($61,800 General Fund Supported Borrowing – All Agency, $175,000 Program Revenue Supported Borrowing, $1,449,600 Residual Program Revenue Supported Borrowing, and $298,100 Program Revenue–Cash) and (2) construct the project at an estimated total project cost of $3,826,500 ($61,800 General Fund Supported Borrowing – All Agency, $2,017,000 Program Revenue Supported Borrowing, $1,449,600 Residual Program Revenue Supported Borrowing, and $298,100 Program Revenue-Cash).
That, upon the recommendation of the President of the University of Wisconsin System, authority be granted to construct various maintenance and repair projects at an estimated total cost of $15,740,100 ($9,980,400 General Fund Supported Borrowing; $533,000 Program Revenue Supported Borrowing; $4,516,700 Program Revenue Cash; and $710,000 Gift and Grant Funds).
Authority to Seek a Waiver of s.16.855 Wis. Stats., to Allow Selection Through a Request for Proposal Process of a Construction Manager-at-Risk for the Kenwood Interdisciplinary Research Complex Phase I Project, UW-Milwaukee
President Pruitt then called for a vote on Resolution 9840, which was approved on a voice vote, with Regent Stan Davis abstaining. The resolution is as follows:
That, upon the recommendation of the UW-Milwaukee Chancellor and the President of the University of Wisconsin System, authority be granted to seek a waiver of s.16.855 Wis. Stats., under the provisions of s.13.48(19), Wis. Stats., to allow selection, through a Request for Proposal (RFP) process, of a Construction Manager-at-Risk for the Kenwood Integrated Research Complex (IRC) Phase I project, at an estimated budget of $75,000,000 ($73,400,000 General Fund Supported Borrowing and $1,600,000 Gift/Grant Funds).
Closing his committee report, Regent Bartell said that Associate Vice President Miller reported that the building commission approved $26 million for projects at its October meeting. The funding breakdown for those projects is $7.5 million General Fund Supported Borrowing and $18.5 million in program revenue.
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Regent Bartell briefly mentioned the minutes from the previous week’s meeting of the Higher Educational Aids Board (HEAB). On July 28, 2010, new awards from WHEG were suspended, which has also happened in previous years as a result of increased requests for financial aid. In addition, HEAB members made recommendations to a Legislative Council Committee studying financial aid, agreeing that financial aid should be directed to those who most need it, to encourage and enhance student retention and graduation; not all financial aid programs have this focus. HEAB opposed the expansion of financial aid programs for students attending proprietary, for-profit institutions. Regent Bartell remarked that financial aid will be an increasingly difficult issue for the state.
The discussion concluded, and the meeting was recessed at 2:10 p.m. and reconvened at 2:20 p.m.
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The following resolution was moved by Regent Bradley, seconded by Regent Wingad, and adopted on a roll-call vote, with Regents Bartell, Bradley, Crain, Danae Davis, Stan Davis, Drew, Evers, Falbo, Manydeeds, Pruitt, Schwalenberg, Smith, Vásquez, Wingad, and Womack voting in the affirmative. There were no dissenting votes and no abstentions.
That the Board of Regents move into closed session to consider UW-Madison and UW-Parkside honorary degree nominations, as permitted by s. 19.85(1)(f), Wis. Stats., to confer with legal counsel regarding pending or potential litigation, as permitted by s. 19.85(1)(g), Wis. Stats., and to deliberate the purchase of public property, as permitted by s. 19.85(1)(e), Wis. Stats.
The meeting was adjourned at 3:00 p.m.
/s/ Jane S. Radue
Jane S. Radue, Secretary of the Board