Monthly Communication

for School Improvement and State & Federal Programs

November 2019

Welcome to the monthly School Improvement and State & Federal Programs communication. The purpose is to contextualize School Improvement into our daily work, to efficiently complete all State and Federal Program tasks, and to promote moving these tasks past simple compliance.

November School and District Improvement Tasks

Be sure to review November activities from
  • Monitoring your School Improvement Plan - One of the main tasks of the SI Team is to monitor the implementation of our School Improvement Strategies and Activities each month, but how? See the Monitoring section of the Plan, Implement, & Monitor page on SITimeline for some ideas and examples.
  • Many districts have Parent/Teacher Conferences in November. This is a great time to collect perception data from parents, students, and the community. Once the perception data is collected, review the results - is there anything that should be considered for immediate change? Anything longer-term to consider for your school improvement plan?
  • Not sure what perception data to collect? Check out the School Climate Survey tool (surveys are in the appendix of the document)
  • Do you know which program you will be evaluating with the Program Evaluation Tool this year? If not, now might be a good time to figure that out and chip away at the PET each month.

I will be attending the State Continuous Improvement Conference this month and will send a detailed update in my December Communication.

In other are some updates to MISchoolData.

State Communications

Are you receiving all of the important communications from the MDE? There are many important things that are communicated from the state each month in memo and e-mail format. If you haven't ever visited the MDE GovDelivery listserv page (or you haven't in a while), it's time.

Dave's Recommendations:

  • School Improvement & Support (Announcement List)
  • Superintendent/Communications (All)
  • Student Assessment (All)
  • Curriculum (Pick your interest areas)

November State & Federal Program Tasks

Please see the suggested November Activities on the State and Federal Program and Compliance Calendar.

  • Parent/Teacher Conferences in November? It is required for Title I schools to review their Parent Compacts at this time. Speaking of Title I and parents, have you held your required Annual Title I Parent Meeting yet? Here is a written procedure that speaks to both of these items.
  • Final allocations are out and Final Expenditure Reports are being submitted. That means it's coming up on Amendment Time!
    • Be sure to plan for amendments in conjunction with your business official. Document the meeting as a Quarterly Budget Review.
    • For districts that share equitable services with private schools, be sure to include those activities and funds in the amendment process.
    • Please review this communication from Shelly Patton regarding amendments.
  • Fiscal auditors may ask for documentation of poverty level for Title I schools. I suggest working with your Food Service Director to get a printout of October Count free and reduced lunch numbers for each building and maintaining this documentation for the auditors.

31a Accountability and 35a Additional Instructional Time

31a: As you may have heard, the entire accountability section of 31a was removed from the law. No separate accountability system for 31a, and no redirection. Thank you to those that provided input or contacted your legislators to bring about this change. Here is a message from Dawn Carmody, 31a MDE Team, with more details.

35a(5): Additional Instructional Time Grant is now open. The application is in GEMS this year.

MAS/FPS Fall Institute Recap

A few presentations from the Fall Institute that are well worth reviewing:

Also, mark your calendars for the MAS/FPS Winter Institute, February 6-7 in Lansing. Registration information will be in a future communication.

Regional Updates