Accountability Certification Validation Due Date and Details

The Accountability Assessment Detail Report is currently available in NEO to allow districts to validate the detail student enrollment and demographic data that will provide the foundation for future Assessment and Accountability reporting for the 18-19 school year. The report lists student details which will be used to produce student groups for school support determinations and ESEA Dashboards.  The report also identifies which assessments the students should have taken, full academic year enrollment for all students, and whether or not a student will be included for accountability measures or only for assessment reporting.

The Accountability Certification will need to be validated by each school/district and certified and submitted by each Superintendent by June 14, 2019.

Once validated, the data will be used for ESEA Data Dashboards and other assessment and accountability reporting on the 18-19 academic year.  The due date is important, as the Department cannot release assessment data in the Maine Assessment and Accountability Reporting System (MAARS) until these student demographic data are certified to be matched up with the assessment results.

The Data Team will be hosting a May 29th 1:00 PM webinar about the Accountability Report.  Please use the following link, here, to register for the webinar https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7759757532334082317

COMMONLY ASKED QUESTIONS

If something is not right, who do we contact?

Please first validate that the information is correct in Synergy. If the data is correct in Synergy, or if it is not located in Synergy, please report your question to the Helpdesk – MEDMS.Helpdesk@maine.gov 207-624-6896.

ASSESSMENTS – What were the asterisks vs the blanks for on the Student Detail?

Asterisks indicate the assessment(s) that the student should have taken. A blank indicates that the student did not need to take any of the assessments.

TITLE 1 – Can you explain the Title 1 information?

Title 1 numbers have two sources:

If the school has a Schoolwide Title 1 program, then all of the students are flagged with Title1 ELA and Title1 Math.

If the school does not have a school wide Title 1 program, but rather a targeted assistance program, then the flags come from data entered into Synergy.

What is a school wide program?

School wide program is a type of Title 1 program. For further information, please contact Jackie Godbout at Jackie.Godbout@maine.gov or 624-6712.

SPPS – Are Special Purpose Private Schools responsible for entering and checking this data for their students or is this a requirement for the public schools only?

SPPS should review the data (if the report has been fixed so you can see it) to validate that student grade levels and enrollments are entered correctly.

Full Academic Year – We have a student that was enrolled the entire year, but is showing N in both District and School Full Year columns.

Students are considered to be school full year if they are enrolled on October 1 and May 3 at the same school.

Students are considered to be district full year if the same district is responsible for the student on October 1 and May 3.

October EPS enrollment data is utilized to determine the October 1 status, if enrollments were entered after October EPS was closed (even if they cover the October 1 date), then the student isn’t counted as Full Academic Year.

AOS – Our schools are each their own district because we are an AOS. I have some kids who are marked N for full year district and a Y for full year school?

Please review the enrollment data in Synergy. It is possible for a student to attend one of your schools for the full year, but whose resident district has changed, so the district full academic year would not be Y, but the school full academic year would be Y

EL Assessment – What does the E mean in the ELA Assessment column?

The “E” indicates Exempt.

EL students who arrived at a US school between April 1, 2018 and March 1, 2019 and who took the ACCESS for ELLs assessment are exempt from having to take the ELA assessment

EL students who arrive at a US school, or have an EL start date, between March 1, 2019 and May 3, 2019 are exempt from having to take the ELA assessment

WAIVERS – We have students with “waivers” who shouldn’t be on the list

The only “waivers” that the Department recognizes are

  • the EL exemption
  • special considerations – these students will have an S in the column for the assessment(s) for which the special consideration was granted

Students whose parents requested that the student not test will be counted as Non-Participants – there is no waiver for these students.

PRIORITY NOTICE: Updates Regarding ESEA Dashboard, Data Correction, and Federal Accountability under ESSA

This notice provides an update to the original timeline released in the DOE newsroom on March 11, 2019 regarding School Year (SY) 2018/19 data correction requests, the timeline for the release of the ESEA Dashboard, and the implementation of the federal accountability model under ESSA.

Data requests submitted to the Maine DOE by the February 8, 2019 deadline were reviewed, amended if necessary with the updated data sets, and uploaded to the ESEA Dashboard. The original timeline indicated the Data Dashboards would be provided to Superintendents for review on Monday, April 15, 2019.  The Department is currently in the process of conducting Quality Assurance (QA), ensuring the accuracy of presented data sets, and therefore the Dashboards were not available for District and School review on April 15, 2019. Once the QA process has concluded, district and school leaders will be notified and provided two (2) weeks to review the information provided. The ESEA Dashboard will become available prior to the conclusion of SY 2018-19.

As a result of a Maine DOE leadership phone conversation with the US Department of Education (USDE) on December 12, 2018, a subsequent phone call on March 8, 2019, and written feedback provided to the Maine DOE on March 15, 2019 related to Maine’s ESSA amendment, the Maine DOE was directed to resubmit clarifying information on April 8, 2019 to the USDE for review.  USDE has verified receipt of the clarifying information, and the Maine DOE awaits their feedback so that the process can proceed.

During this time of pause, the Maine DOE has secured state funding to support the provision of virtual coaching to schools that the Maine DOE anticipates will be eligible to receive additional support when amendments to Maine’s ESSA State plan are approved.  Participation in the virtual coaching is currently optional, with many eligible schools taking advantage of this support.

Maine DOE has requested an extension, until August 31, 2019, to officially make school identifications, and has requested the period of availability of 1003(a) funds be extended until September 30, 2020. These extensions will allow the Maine DOE to ensure the Department is able to align available federal funds to the identification timeline, therefore ensuring the availability of financial supports to schools.

Please know that the Maine DOE continues to do everything conceivable to ensure Maine has an equitable federal accountability model that honors stakeholder feedback and Maine’s small, rural context.

 

 

 

Important federal grants for local communities on school safety and security just opened, apply soon!

The Department of Education is committed to providing timely information and support to school communities, including federal grant opportunities, in the ongoing efforts to ensure safe schools in the State of Maine. Please see below for new grant information; further questions about the grants and requirements should be directed to the grant providers.

Community Policing Development (CPD) Program

The 2019 Community Policing Development Program is a competitive grant program designed to advance the practice of community policing by providing guidance on promising practices through the development and testing of innovative strategies; building knowledge about effective practices and outcomes; and supporting new, creative approaches to preventing crime and promoting safe communities. The CPD solicitation is open to all public governmental agencies, for-profit and nonprofit organizations, institutions of higher education, community groups, and faith-based organizations.

Applications are due by May 28, 2019 at 7:59 PM EDT.

Please click here for more information on the 2019 Community Policing Development Program.

Law Enforcement Mental Health and Wellness Act (LEMHWA) Program

The 2019 Law Enforcement Mental Health and Wellness Act Program is a competitive grant program that provides funding to improve the delivery of and access to mental health and wellness services for law enforcement through training and technical assistance, demonstration projects, and implementation of promising practices related to peer mentoring programs that are national in scope. The LEMHWA solicitation is open to all public governmental agencies, for-profit and nonprofit organizations, institutions of higher education, community groups, and faith-based organizations.  This grant may be of interest to school districts with a dedicated police force.

Applications are due by May 28, 2019 at 7:59 PM EDT.

Please click here for more information on the 2019 Law Enforcement Mental Health and Wellness Act Program.

School Violence Prevention Program (SVPP)

The 2019 School Violence Prevention Program (SVPP) is a competitive grant program that provides funding directly to states, units of local government, Indian tribes, and public agencies (including school districts and local law enforcement agencies) to be used to improve security at schools and on school grounds. Awards may include funding for coordination with local law enforcement; training for local law enforcement officers to prevent school violence against others and self; placement and use of metal detectors, locks, lighting, and other deterrent measures; acquisition and installation of technology for expedited notification of local law enforcement during an emergency; and/or any other measure that may provide a significant improvement in security.  Special eligibility notice for school districts:  Applications for SVPP must be submitted by a state, tribe, or local unit of ‘general government (city, county, township, etc.), or public agencies (school districts, police departments, sheriff’s departments).

Applications are due by May 31, 2019 at 7:59 PM EDT.

Please click here for more information on the 2019 School Violence Prevention Program.

PRIORITY NOTICE: Information Regarding ESEA Dashboard and Implementation of the Federal Accountability Model Under ESSA

Dear District and School Leaders,

I am writing to provide you with an update regarding School Year (SY) 2018-19 data correction requests, the timeline for the release of the ESEA Dashboard, and implementation of the federal accountability model under ESSA.

Data requests submitted to the Maine DOE by the February 8, 2019 deadline will be completed by Friday, March 15, 2019. The updated data sets will be uploaded to the ESEA Dashboard and provided to Superintendents for review on Monday, April 15, 2019. The review period will end on Monday, April 29, 2019. After April 29, 2019, no further data corrections will be possible. The ESEA Dashboard will be publicly  available later in SY 2018-19.

Maine DOE leadership had a phone conversation with the US Department of Education (USDE) on December 12, 2018 to discuss Maine’s ESSA amendment. During this conversation Maine DOE staff members outlined Maine’s proposed amendment. USDE did not indicate required revisions to Maine DOE during the call or provide written follow-up. The Maine DOE submitted the amendment on December 14, 2018.

The Maine DOE leadership emailed USDE leaders several times over the past three months to inquire about the ESSA amendment status. To meet USDE’s required timeline for implementation, the previous administration instructed Maine DOE leaders to move forward with the implementation of the ESEA Dashboard and federal accountability system, without regard to the status of Maine’s amended ESSA Plan.

Under my leadership, Maine DOE leaders expressed concern regarding the implementation of the federal accountability model without federal approval of Maine’s amended model. After gaining a deeper understanding of the concerns expressed by Maine DOE leaders, I called Frank Brogan, Assistant Secretary of Elementary and Secondary Education, to inquire about the status of Maine’s amendment. As a result of that call, a meeting was scheduled with USDE staffers and Maine DOE leadership for Friday, March 8, 2019.  During the call, Maine DOE leadership connected with USDE to discuss Maine’s amended ESSA plan, which had been submitted to them on December 14, 2018. Given the USDE’s recent feedback provided during the March 8, 2019 call, the Maine DOE suspects current anticipated school identifications will likely remain unchanged. However, Maine DOE believes USDE’s proposed revisions will require Maine to identify additional schools. The Maine DOE expects to receive written feedback from USDE by Friday, March 15, 2019.

In light of these developments, Maine DOE will request an extension to make school identifications during SY 2019-20. Please know that the Maine DOE is doing everything conceivable to ensure Maine has an equitable federal accountability model that honors stakeholder feedback and Maine’s small, rural context.

Pender Makin
Commissioner
Maine Department of Education

Rural Maine Attendance Summit to be held April 11

Rural Maine Attendance is hosting small school districts from across the state for a day-long summit held at gather at Jeff’s Catering in Brewer on April 11th, 2019 with experts from across the state to talk about ways to improve chronic absenteeism in rural schools.

This summit will help generate more tools, and allow for the exchanging of ideas regarding the growing issues that are keeping kids from accessing school. Any and all rural Maine school districts with less than 1,000 (or so) students are invited to this conference.

Groups of people (two or more) from districts are welcome to attend and/or staff that deal with attendance issues such as Social Workers, Guidance, Principals, Lead Teachers, etc.

For more information visit the Rural Maine Attendance website.