An Update From the Indiana Department of Education for September 25, 2020

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

Again this year, the Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) will participate in the national Cards for Our Military Challenge. Please read this letter from Dr. McCormick. Feel free to contact John Althardt for additional information.

Legislative Updates and Guidance

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.


IDOE Newsletters Centrally Located

All IDOE newsletters are located in one convenient location. See September updates and past issues here.


Office of Information Technology

New! Second E-Rate Filing Window Now Open for a Short Time

The E-Rate program recently announced a second filing opportunity for schools to receive E-Rate funding for additional on-campus Internet and/or WAN bandwidth for this school year (2020-2021). During the last few months, if your school has needed (or will soon need) additional Internet and/or WAN bandwidth, this may be an opportunity for you. Filing is due by October 16. If you are going to pursue this option and you use a third-party to file for you, please contact them immediately. Details regarding this second window to file for Funding Year 2020 include:

  • Second Filing Window for FY 2020 is only for Internet and WAN services (NO Category 2). This is for Internet/WAN being used during July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021.

  • No competitive bidding requirement is needed, as long as the school requested Internet and/or WAN funding for FY 2020, and all state and local competitive procurement procedures are followed.

  • The Internet/WAN price per megabit has to be the same or less than the existing contract price.

  • Off-campus use of Internet bandwidth, even if used for an educational purpose, is still ineligible for E-Rate funding.

 New! New Cybersecurity Toolkit Available for Schools

As Cybersecurity Month (October) approaches, IDOE wants to make you aware of the Cybersecurity for Education Toolkit, an easy to understand, turnkey resource complete with the latest tips, trends, and resources to make sure you are cybersafe and practice good habits whenever you are online. Developed by the Indiana Executive Council on Cybersecurity with modular components for students, parents, teachers, administrators, and board audiences, the tool kit is now available. Please contact Dr. John Keller with any questions.

Reminder: First Data Collection Through Data Exchange-Submission Window Announced

The new data exchange system for school reporting will be open for submission of the Other Personnel (NE) certification from October 1 through October 30. Training for utilizing data exchange will be available in IDOE Moodle on September 25. Please read this memo for additional information. Questions should be sent here.


Office of School Accountability

Reminder: 2020 Cohort Guidance

High school personnel should be checking their 2020 cohort report in Learning Connection to ensure there are no errors or omissions. If graduates are missing, they can still be submitted to IDOE until October 5. The cohort process is running every morning, so any changes should be processed the next business day. If students who exited prior to June 30, 2020, are not showing as exited, a voluntary graduation rate audit can be submitted October 7-30. Guidance regarding the graduation rate audit can be found here. Additional cohort and graduation rate audit resources are posted in the School Accountability and Accreditation Community in Moodle (enrollment key: AccountabilityCommunity). Send all questions here.

Reminder: Updated Process for Signing Off on the Fall Membership Summary Report

This memo provides additional information regarding the September 4, 2020, memo related to the Fall Average Daily Membership (ADM) count. The previous memo included a Fall 2020 Funding Matrix that provided guidance regarding how prior virtual enrollments affect funding levels for the 2020 fall count. The updated memorandum provides further information about how the funding reconciliation process will work, and how schools will be able to review the funding levels generated by each student. Please send all questions here.


Office of Student Assessment

New! 2020-2021 Accommodations Updates Webinar 

Due to popular demand, IDOE has scheduled a third webinar for 2020-2021 Accommodations Updates on September 28 from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. (EDT). This webinar is for special education directors, corporation test coordinators, administrators, superintendents, and classroom teachers. Information will be shared regarding new legislation related to text-to-speech and calculators, IIEP accommodation updates, and how these changes impact students taking Indiana standardized assessments. Please register for this webinar here. The presentation slides are available here, and a recording is available here.

New! Things to Remember About Effective Learning Assessments

Teachers across Indiana are creating formative assessments for their classroom to evaluate students who are learning in a variety of different ways under demanding conditions. To offer perspective for classroom teachers as they develop and utilize effective learning assessments, the Office of Student Assessment has developed a document with helpful reminders.


Office of Academics / Special Education

New! Indiana Resource Network (IRN) Offers Support for Indiana Schools

In addition to the Office of Special Education (OSE), the IRNs offer Indiana public schools free or low cost in-person and virtual professional development and technical assistance options. This includes the Indiana IEP Resource Center (IEPRC) which provides resources, professional learning opportunities, and technical assistance related to the Indiana IEP system (IIEP), Article 7 compliance, Individual Education Program (IEP) processes, and improving local practices. Please contact Traci Tetrick with any questions.

New! Resources Available for Educators of Students Who Are Deaf and/or Blind

OSE has created a one-page flyer identifying deaf-blindness resources for educators and families. For additional information regarding deaf-blindness resources, please contact Sarah Mohr.

New! Resource Guide Including Indicator 14 Data Now Available

OSE has developed this Transition Planning Resource Guide for the 2020-2021 school year. The resource guide includes Google form versions of Transition Assessments as well as information about the new way Indicator 14 data is being collected.

New! IIEP Accommodations Course Completion Reminder

A Moodle course outlining the Indiana IEP (IIEP) Accommodations page is available through Moodle (course name: IIEP Accommodations). This course is mandatory for all IIEP users and must be completed by September 30. For instructions on how to enroll in the course, please click on the following link. If you have additional questions, please contact Emma Everson.

New! Webinar on Least Restrictive Environment During COVID-19 Set for October 1

Please join IDOE for the Weekly OSE Webinar #3: "Least Restrictive Environment  (LRE) in the Wake of COVID-19." The webinar will be held Thursday, October 1, from 2 to 3 p.m. (EDT). Presented by Traci Tetrick and Jessica Tomasino, participants will have opportunities to discuss both K-12 and preschool LRE. Please register here.


Office of Academics / Teaching and Learning

New! Survey for Literacy Comprehensive Needs Assessment

IDOE is working to complete a Comprehensive Needs Assessment (CNA) of literacy across the state. As part of the process to develop a statewide literacy initiative, IDOE is asking for input from building principals on the current literacy practices and needs for schools. Principal input on the Elementary Survey or Secondary Survey is imperative to our ability to complete this task. This data will not be published in correlation to the school it came from, nor will there be any consequences for answers provided. This survey will take no more than five to 10 minutes. Please contact Kelly Waller with any questions.

New! Updated Gudiance from the NCAA

The NCAA Eligibility Center has updated its COVID-19 FAQ for students initially enrolling full time in college in the 2021-2022 academic year. This document relates to initial eligibility requirements, and is available on the NCAA website.

Reminder: Dyslexia Community of Practice

IDOE is renewing the dyslexia community of practice. This group has been created so the authorized reading specialist trained in dyslexia for each school corporation, charter school, or co-op has a place to collaborate, learn, and share with their peers. The community of practice will be divided into nine different regions across Indiana. New this year will be a book study, sharing of new instructional materials, and leadership opportunities within each region. Please ensure that the authorized reading specialist has completed the JotForm by October 4, to be included in these groups. Please contact Joe Risch with additional questions.

Reminder: Upcoming Webinars - Teaching In a Digital World Series

The "Teaching In a Digital World" webinar series supports teachers and their utilization of digital learning, whether remote, in the classroom, or hybrid. A different topic related to the three pillars of digital learning will be covered in each webinar. These pillars include 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 29 - Episode 7: Related Arts (click here to register)

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

October 27- Episode 9: Early Learning (click here to register)

Contact Jennifer Watson with any questions.

Reminder: U.S. Presidential Scholars Program

The U.S. Presidential Scholars Program honors outstanding high school seniors, and thereby encourages high attainment among all students. Please read this memo outlining the qualifications and nomination forms. Nominations are due by November 6. Please email Shannon Dick with questions.

Reminder: STEM School Certification and Recertification Process

Applications for STEM School Certification or Recertification are due October 30, 2020. Access the 2020-2021 STEM School Certification Guide here and updated rubric here. Contact Shannon Dick with any questions.

Reminder: Digital Learning Book Study - The Perfect Blend

It is not too late to join the fall digital learning book study, a great professional learning opportunity for K-12 educators. For the next ten weeks, there will be a book discussion on “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 by using the enrollment key “blend.” Please email Meri Carnahan with questions.

Reminder: Computer Science Education

Please click here to view guidance related to IC 20-30-5-23, requiring all public schools and public charter schools to include computer science in the curriculum for students in grades K-12. Direct any questions to Jake Koressel.


Office of Academics / Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Wellness

Reminder: Registration is Now Open for Virtual Training by Dr. Anthony Muhammad on “Overcoming the Achievement Gap Trap”

IDOE is pleased to announce a collaboration with Dr. Anthony Muhammad to provide an especially relevant training based upon his book “Overcoming the Achievement Gap Trap.” This training will take place in a virtual format an on October 14, from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., with scheduled breaks and lunch. Registration is now open through the link here. Registration is limited to the first 500 individuals. There is no cost for participation, and 10 Professional Growth Points (PGPs) and a copy of Dr. Muhammad’s book will be offered for meeting minimum participation requirements.   


Office of Academics / Title Grants and Support

New! Comparability of Services Under Title I

Local education agencies who accept Title I funds, including traditional public schools and charter schools, must annually determine comparability of services under Title I. The comparability form is now open and due October 31. Please see the attached memo and application guide.

New! 21st CCLC Waiver Update

In response to an increased need for flexibility around in-school and out-of-school time programming in light of COVID-19, the U.S. Department of Education is allowing states to waive “non-school hours” from the definition of a 21st Century Community Learning Center. This will allow 21st CCLC programs more flexibility in meeting the needs of their local communities. The period for public comment is open and the public may submit comments here.

New! Advanced Placement (AP) Updates: Live Sessions with College Board

AP coordinators, administrators, and teachers are encouraged to join College Board for a live presentation of recent AP updates. Sessions are offered on October 6 and October 7, from 10 to 11 a.m. (EDT). Additional information is available here.


Office of School Finance

Reminder: School Year 2020-2021 Average Daily Membership Count Dates

The fall count date of the eligible pupils enrolled in each school corporation and charter school was September 18. The submission phase for collecting membership data closes September 29. The DOE-ME Layout found at the following link under Data Layouts and provides details on reporting students for membership during the 2020-2021 school year.  If you have any questions concerning the count dates, please email Melissa Ambre.

Reminder: Curricular Material Reimbursement 

Public school corporations and charter schools may apply for curricular material reimbursement for the 2020-2021 school year. Both student level AND claim data must be submitted between October 1 and October 29. Officials should review the curricular material data layout (DOE-TB). Click the Data Layouts button. The Reimbursement Claim Form Instructions are located on Moodle in the Public School Finance Community / Curricular Material Reimbursement / 2020-2021. If you have any questions, please email Skii Ficklin. 

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 details. Questions may be directed 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.