An Update From the Indiana Department of Education for September 4, 2020

indiana department of education - doctor jennifer mccormick - superintendent of public instruction
Dr. Mac

Guidance on ADM and Reporting Virtual Learning Students


This memo addresses guidance provided by the Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) issued on June 12, 2020, regarding Reporting Virtual Students on ADM for the 2020-2021 School Year. The memo aligns the previous document to the newly-modified Indiana Administrative Code enacted by the State Board of Education.

Questions about reporting ADM aligned to a student’s virtual status and/or this memo can be directed to Melissa Ambre.


Holiday Closing

Reminder: All IDOE Offices will be closed on Monday, September 7, in recognition of the Labor Day holiday. 


Office of Information Technology

New! Moodle Maintenance Scheduled for September 15

IDOE’s Moodle server will be down September 15, from 7:00 a.m. (EDT) until 1:00 p.m. (EDT) for routine maintenance. Courses providing a Group View should not schedule events during this maintenance window. All Moodle users will not have access at that time. Please contact Don Gilroy with any questions.


Office of School Building Physical Security and Safety

New! Considerations for Schools Used as Polling Locations

Schools may be used as polling locations for the upcoming November 2020 General Election. Health, safety, and security considerations for schools being used as polling locations can be found here.

New! Emergency Preparedness Plans Certification

Within 60 calendar days after the beginning date of each school year, superintendents shall certify to the Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) that the emergency preparedness plans for the school corporation and each school in the corporation have been reviewed and revised if necessary. This process may be completed here.

New! FEMA Guidance on Eligible Emergency Work 

This week, FEMA issued new guidance on eligible emergency work under the Public Assistance program. Additional information is available here.


Legislative Updates and Guidance

New! Review of the 2020 Legislative Sessions Impact on Education Available

A webinar is now available providing an overview of the 2020 legislative session. Please contact Michael Brown with any questions.

IDOE continues to provide clear and timely guidance related to bills passed during the 2020 legislative session. Find a curation of all 2020 legislative guidance here.


2020 Census

Reminder: 2020 Census Ends September 30

The U.S. Census Bureau is ending all counting efforts for the census on September 30, a month sooner than previously announced. This memo includes important information for superintendents and federal funding administrators encouraging 2020 Census lessons in the classroom and sharing information with parents and families available in English and Spanish.


Office of School Accountability

New! Release of Preliminary State Grades for 2019-2020 School Year

The 2019-2020 state report cards will be released on Tuesday, September 8, in an embargoed state to schools and corporations. Embargoed report cards will be posted in the accountability portal. Please review this important information regarding the 2019-2020 A-F grades. Guidance on the Department’s A-F audit process may be found here. All resources are posted in the School Accountability and Accreditation Community in Moodle. Please contact the Office of School Accountability for additional information.


Office of Student Assessment

New! Test Information Distribution Engine (TIDE) Downtime for Transition to New School Year

TIDE will be unavailable September 4-13 for yearly maintenance. When TIDE is live for school year 2020-2021 (September 14), all users must reset their passwords to confirm access. Review this memo for details.

New! Fall 2020 Webinar Series for New Teachers of Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities Continues Soon

Please join IDOE and Project SUCCESS in a webinar series for new teachers of students with significant cognitive disabilities. The following topics will be explored:

  • The Indiana Resource Network (Completed August 19)

  • Unpacking the Content Connectors (September 16)

  • Indiana Individualized Education Program (IIEP) Tips and Tricks (October 14) 

  • The I AM Assessment (November 18)

Please refer to this information for registration information and additional details regarding each session. Contact Stephanie Thompson with questions.

New! Test Security and Integrity Training

CTCs and/or School Test Coordinators are required to provide test security training to all* school staff and ensure all school staff sign the 2020-2021 Indiana Testing Security and Integrity Agreement by October 30.

CTCs received several training resources to assist with conducting the required training on August 31, via the Assessment listserv message. Superintendents should confirm their CTCs do the following by October 30:

  • Complete the CTC Test Security and Integrity Training;

  • Ensure staff sign the Indiana Testing Security and Integrity Agreement; and

  • Ensure staff complete Test Security and Integrity Training.

 *Bus drivers are not required to complete test security training or sign the Integrity Agreement.

New! 2020-2021 Accommodations Updates Webinar

IDOE's offices of Special Education and Student Assessment (OSA) invites special education directors, CTCs, administrators, superintendents, and classroom teachers to attend the 2020-2021 Accommodations Updates Webinar. The agenda includes the new legislation related to TTS and Calculator, IIEP accommodation updates and how these affect students taking Indiana standardized assessments. There are two available options.The first will be on September 14, from 3 to 4 p.m. (EDT). The second opportunkty will be September 18, from 10 to 11 a.m. (EDT). Please contact OSA with any questions.


Office of Accountability

New! Instructional Time Requirements and Two-Hour Delays and Early Dismissals

IDOE acknowledges the implementation of two-hour delays or two-hour early dismissals by schools where it is deemed necessary for the safety and wellbeing of students and faculty. A day when a two-hour delay or two-hour early dismissal is implemented may count as a full instructional day. Please note that the utilization of such delays or early dismissals are not to be considered as a regular scheduling practice by schools. Additionally, if two-hour delays or early dismissals are used in circumstances where the safety and wellbeing of students and faculty are not the concern, it is possible the school day would not count towards the 180-day minimum required for full ADM funding. Schools should utilize late arrivals and early dismissals to address safety concerns. Read the full memo here. Please send all questions here.


Office of Academics / Special Education

New! Indiana IEP Transition to the IDOE LINK Portal

This fall, IDOE’s Office of Special Education will be piloting the move from Learning Connection to the LINK Portal for the “front door access” to Indiana IEP (IIEP). To prepare for this transition, all traditional public and charters will need to perform some clean-up on their Learning Connection accounts. IDOE is recruiting a few school corporations, charters, and Special Education cooperatives to volunteer for the pilot. Read the full memo here. If your organization is interested in piloting, please contact Emma Everson

New! IIEP Error Message: Review Assessment Accommodations

IDOE was made aware of an error message in IIEP this week. This issue only appears to have affected current eighth grade students. The error message asked teachers to review assessment accommodations. For eighth graders, the participation in high school biology and government could be selected, but the biology and government sections for these students did not appear when reviewing assessment accommodations.

Public Consulting Group (PCG) began working on a solution immediately, and a solution was deployed late last night (Thursday). IDOE believes this solution resolved the error message issue. However, in the event this error message remains unresolved, please follow the instructions for a temporary solution. Please contact Emma Everson with questions.

New! Physical, Occupational, and Speech Therapy Telemedicine Services Extended

Governor Holcomb’s Executive Order 20-13, clarifying that physical, occupational, and speech therapists may provide telemedicine services, was recently extended through October. Please note that EO 20-13 does not address telemedicine service provisions by therapy assistants and speech-language pathology clinical fellows. For further details, including information on Medicaid reimbursement for IEP-required therapy services, click here.

New! Resource Guide for Transition Planning Released

The Office of Special Education (OSE) is releasing part one of a two-part Resource Guide for Transition Planning. Included in the guide are digital and PDF versions of Transition Assessments, along with virtual options for transition activities and services.

New! Transition from School to Post-School Life Guidance Available

The United States Department of Education Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) has released their updated Transition Guide to assist schools and families with the transition from school to post-school life. The guide features information on transition IEPs, pre-employment transition services (Pre-ETS), and student decision-making.

New! Implementation Toolkits Offer Support to Student Literacy Growth in Remote and Blended Learning Environments

The National Center on Improving Literacy (NCIL) and OSEP have released a toolkits to help schools and families join efforts to support children’s literacy growth in remote or blended learning environments. 

New! Teacher of Record (TOR) Professional Development Class Available

A new course, Indiana IEP for Teachers of Record (TOR), is now available from the Indiana IEP Resource Center (IEPRC). This course walks through Indiana IEP from the perspective of a TOR, and provides an in-depth review of each section of the Indiana IEP system. Click here to take this course.


Office of Academics / Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Wellness

New! Dr. Adam Saenz FREE Virtual Workshops on Wellness and Mental Health – Open to ALL Indiana Educators

New Teacher Orientation: What You Need to Know to Be Sustainable. This virtual workshop will guide participants through the five areas of wellbeing: physical, occupational, emotional, financial, and spiritual. The first will be held on Wednesday, September 9, and again on Wednesday, September 16 from 3:30-5:00 p.m. (EDT).

The Truth About Mental Illness (Hint: It is Probably Not What You Have Been Told). The first virtual workshop will be held on Thursday, September 10, and again on Thursday, September 17, from 3:30-5:00 p.m. (EDT).

Additional information on how to join these FREE workshops can be found here.

New! Two Upcoming FREE Professional Development Opportunities with Panorama– Open to ALL Indiana Educators

Equity-Centered SEL 

In this September 22, 4 p.m. (EDT) session, attendees will reflect on social identities, identity development, and their significance in building equity-centered SEL programs. Learn about equity alignments with CASEL and Indiana Competencies and assessing existing SEL programs/initiatives for cultural competence. Register here.

Social-Emotional Learning and Adult Well-Being

On September 23, at 4:00 p.m. (EDT), a course on Strategies for Adult Social-Emotional Learning and Wellness will be held. This session will highlight high-leverage strategies that foster SEL and wellness for adults. While many of the strategies are easily adaptable for work with students, this session will focus on support for adults. Adult SEL and well-being have a ripple effect on students, and is a key lever for improving student outcomes. Register here.


Office of Academics / School Improvement

New! School Improvement Plans Due October 2

This is a reminder to all public and private accredited schools that comprehensive school improvement plans are due October 2. Plans are submitted by uploading a pdf file of the plan via the DOE Online portal. All schools designated as Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI) and Additional Targeted Support and Improvement (ATSI) are required to use IDOE’s consolidated template. The template may be found on the Office of School Improvement webpage. For additional information, contact John Purcell.


Office of Academics / Leadership and Innovation

New! Evaluation Plan Submission Deadline and Negative Impact

Details on Evaluation Plan submission and Negative Impact can be found here. Please contact Rebecca Estes with any questions. 

New! Grow Your Own: Teacher Residency Grant Information

The Grow Your Own Teacher Residency Grant supports a pilot program engaging local education agencies (LEA) in targeted, strategic recruitment efforts to build a pipeline of educators in their community. This grant offers  up to two LEAs to participate in a collaborative planning period with IDOE, the Region 8 Comprehensive Center, and an Indiana Higher Education Institution’s Educator Preparation Program (EPP). Selected LEAs will be awarded $50,000 to use towards planning and implementation. The application and details can be found here. Please contact Rebecca Estes with any questions.


Office of Academics / Teaching and Learning

New! Resources for Families During Remote Learning

As students move between in-person and remote learning, families may need additional resources to help provide instruction and guidance with the student’s learning. IDOE has partnered with Regional Educational Laboratory to provide a collection of instructional videos and activities for families here. Please contact Joe Risch with additional questions.

New! Save the Date for Preschool Administrator's Community of Practice Virtual Meeting

IDOE's Community of Practice for School Administrators of Preschool Programs is convening virtually on Wednesday, September 30 from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. This meeting will focus on the topic of remote learning for early learners. Instructions for connecting will be posted on the CoP group page. If you are interested in joining the Community of Practice, contact Sarah Parks-Reese

New! IDOE Moodle Course on High-Quality Pre-K Available

IDOE has created a new course specifically on the topic of high-quality pre-k in school settings. This course will assist K-12 administrators in considering various aspects of high-quality preschool expansion, from beginning the discussion in their school or district, to funding and managing a high-quality preschool program. There are three modules available now, with additional modules in production for later release. Log into Moodle, and begin the course here, or contact Sarah Parks-Reese for additional information.

New! Learn By Doing Book Study for K-12 Math Teachers, Coaches, and School Leaders

Join IDOE’s math team for an action-oriented, learning by doing book study of John SanGiovanni’s book, Productive Math Struggle: A 6-Point Action Plan for Fostering Perseverance. The book study will explore six essential actions for nurturing productive struggle before, during, and after lessons through discussion, implementation, and reflection. Discussion will “support access, equity, and empowerment, specifically arguing that every student is worthy of struggle’’ (2020). Click here to participate. Please contact Emily Bruning with any questions.

New! Partnership for Inquiry Learning Instructional Support Videos

IDOE has partnered with a team of literacy and math educational coaches and specialists from the Partnership for Inquiry Learning to provide content to assist educators in understanding and applying select Indiana Academic Standards in grades two through five. Each standard is accompanied by a one page description of the vertical articulation of each standard or concept, a brief overview video introducing the standard, and grade-specific videos demonstrating strategies to effectively teach each goal. Click here to access additional information. Please contact Robin Conti with any questions.

New! IDOE Launches Digital Equity Month Website

IDOE kicks-off Digital Equity Month with a new website providing resources for schools to use in gathering key data elements on off-campus technology and Internet access for all students. Questions concerning Digital Equity Month should be directed to Meri Carnahan.

New! Digital Citizenship Week

The 2020 Indiana Digital Citizenship Week is September 14-18. School corporations participating in Indiana Digital Citizenship Week signal their commitment to empowering Indiana’s K-12 students to think critically, behave safely, and participate responsibly with technology both in and out of school. Click here for resources for Digital Citizenship Week, and contribute to the conversation by using #INDigCitWeek on Twitter. Contact Jennifer Watson with questions.

Reminder: Digital Learning Book Study - The Perfect Blend

IDOE’s Digital Learning team has announced a fall professional learning opportunity for K-12 educators. Beginning September 21, we will read and discuss, "The Perfect Blend: A Practical Guide to Designing Student-Centered Learning Experiences" by Indiana educator Michele Eaton. Learn skills, strategies, and lesson ideas to use in planning and implementing blended learning in your classroom. To participate in this book study, search for the course The Perfect Blend in Moodle then join using the enrollment key "blend." Please email Meri Carnahan with questions.

Reminder: Upcoming Webinars - Teaching In a Digital World Series

IDOE's Teaching In a Digital World Webinar Series supports teachers and their utilization of digital learning, whether remote, in the classroom, or hybrid. In each webinar we will cover a different topic related to the three pillars for digital learning: Leadership, Teaching and Learning, and Community Engagement. Visit our Teaching In a Digital World web page to get links to recorded webinars and slide decks. 

·         September 15 - Episode 6: Digital Citizenship (click here to register)

·         September 29 - Episode 7: Related Arts (click here to register)

·         October 13 - Episode 8: Assessment (click here to register)

Contact Jennifer Watson with any questions.


Office of School Finance

Reminder: CARES Act Fund Numbers

The Office of School Finance has added new fund numbers for reporting CARES Act expenditures. Please read this memo for additional information. Please send all questions here. 

Reminder: Summer School

The window to submit the Final Instructional Costs Report for Summer School 2020 is open. In order to be eligible to receive a summer school payment, the report must be submitted, or re-submitted as often as necessary, on or before the submission deadline of September 11. Access to the report is available in the Summer School folder in Moodle Finance and on IDOE's website. If you have additional questions about the Final Instructional Costs Report for Summer School 2020, please contact Kathryn Roth or Teresa Hemmerle


Office of School and Community Nutrition

New! USDA Information on SFSP/SSO Waivers

The Office of School and Community Nutrition (SCN) is working closely with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to provide guidance and flexibilities as quickly as possible. SCN will send additional communication as soon as it becomes available. Please email Julie Sutton  or call her at (317) 232-0845 with any questions.


Office of School Transportation

New! Special Purpose (Activity) Bus Use Guidance

Please read the memo regarding the allowable uses for a Special Purpose Bus, commonly known as an Activity Bus. Please send any questions here.


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Weekly Updates

View previous weekly updates from Dr. McCormick here.  

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The Weekly Update from the Indiana Department of Education is created by the Office of Communications, and  is distributed every Friday morning.