An Update From the Indiana Department of Education for March 26, 2021

Indiana Department of Education. Dr. Katie Jenner. Secretary of Education. Working Together for Student Success.

A Message from Dr. Katie Jenner

Katie Jenner Headshot

Earlier this month, I joined Commissioner for Higher Education Teresa Lubbers and Department of Workforce Development Commissioner Fred Payne to discuss how K-12, higher education, and the workforce can partner to have the greatest impact for Hoosiers.

Over the course of about 13 years, those of us in the K-12 system have a unique opportunity to positively impact the lifelong trajectory of our students by building their knowledge and skills, removing barriers to educational attainment, and ensuring equitable opportunities for all. Achieving this matters tremendously -- not only at the individual level, but also for families, communities, and our state -- and we all have an opportunity to play a role in making this possible.

Across Indiana, we are seeing communities develop strategic partnerships among key stakeholders, contributing to improved opportunities for students. Educators, colleges and universities, and employers are increasingly collaborating to offer Hoosier students quality work-based learning experiences and the opportunity to leave high school with a post-secondary credential or high-value industry certification.

Last week, Superintendent Marilyn Hissong of East Allen County Schools (EACS) shared a fantastic example of this in her schools. In partnership with Vincennes University, East Allen University provides students with the opportunity to earn up to 60 transferable college credits.

In doing so, students are not only college prepared, but they are also exposed to the skills and careers of the 21st century… and once they get to college, often these students are able to graduate earlier and with significant cost savings! The program is open to all students in the district, as well as students outside of the district, and low income students have the opportunity to participate for nearly free. Now in the ninth year, their early college program has shown excellent success with 89 percent of students graduating with an associate degree in hand! Congratulations to EACS!

Another great example is Parke Heritage High School (PHHS) in Rockville, which offers a number of degree options and pathways in partnership with Ivy Tech Community College. Staff works with each student to customize a path that best suits their post-graduation plans.

This school year, Parke Heritage anticipates that 30 percent of their senior graduates will earn the Indiana College Core (formerly the STGEC), which will allow them to transfer these credits to any public Indiana college or university, and even some private institutions. Since 2019, when Principal Dwight Ashley and his team graduated the school’s first group of Indiana College Core seniors, students have earned over 3,500 college credit hours, saving PHHS families more than $500,000 in college tuition! Keep up the great work!

As a department, we will continue to spotlight the good work happening around our state. As always, contact us anytime to share news of your success and innovation, so we can elevate it and ultimately, support others as they emulate it. Thanks for ALL you do.

COVID-19 Updates - Academic Implications and Financial Information

REMINDER: Accelerated Learning Professional Development

IDOE invites schools and community partners to join the webinars listed below, where IDOE staff will discuss Indiana’s Accelerated Learning Plan. Registration is not required, and webinars will be recorded for those unable to attend live. For more information, contact Nicole Smithers.




Webinar Link

Tuesday, April 6

4 to 4:45 p.m. ET


Join Here

Wednesday, April 7

7 to 7:45 a.m. ET


Join Here

Monday, April 12

4 to 4:45 p.m. ET

Community Partners

Join Here

Thursday, April 15

7 to 7:45 a.m. ET

Community Partners

Join Here

Office of Accountability

REMINDER: IDOE Seeks Public Comment on Federal Waiver Request

IDOE is inviting the public to provide feedback regarding the state’s request for a one-year waiver from the U.S. Department of Education regarding federal accountability requirements. Specifically, IDOE is requesting a waiver from the following:

  • Annual assignment of federal ratings based on 2020-2021 data;
  • Identification for federal statuses of Comprehensive, Targeted, and Additional Targeted Support based on 2020-2021 data;
  • Measurement of progress toward long-term goals based on 2020-2021 data;
  • Adjustment of a school’s academic achievement (proficiency) score based on a participation rate below 95 percent; and
  • Annual reporting of certain data related to accountability based on 2020-2021 data.

Individuals who wish to provide comment are encouraged to complete and submit this JotForm no later than Friday, April 16. Questions may be directed to

Office of Student Assessment

NEW: Spring 2021 IREAD-3 Results Now Available

Spring 2021 IREAD-3 results are now available in the Online Reporting System (ORS) for all students who tested online during the defined two week test window. Results for students testing paper-and-pencil will post in ORS once paper materials have been processed and scored. Schools are required to share results in a timely manner with parents of students who tested. Schools should consult this guidance when determining next steps for students who did not pass IREAD-3 this spring. If you have questions, please contact the Office of Student Assessment.


NEW: Spring 2021 ILEARN Scripts and Glossary Sheets

The Office of Student Assessment (OSA) created the 2020-2021 ILEARN Scripts to Support Test Administration document to support corporations in preparing to administer upcoming ILEARN assessments to students with a variety of accommodations. The document also references the new ILEARN glossary sheets that will support students participating in paper testing (ELA, Mathematics, Biology). Glossary sheets provide students with a list of select terms and their definitions in lieu of footnotes in paper test documents. Please check with your Corporation Test Coordinator (CTC) for more details regarding these secure materials. If you have questions, please contact the Office of Student Assessment.


NEW: ISPROUT Needs Your Assistance

There are several opportunities to provide input into new ISPROUT resources. OSA is seeking educators to serve on a content and fairness committee to provide feedback related to the skills and foundations and to pilot lessons in fall 2021. OSA is also seeking speech-language pathologists, in particular, to provide feedback on guidance related to speech only students. If you are interested in serving in any of these capacities, please submit your information and areas of interest here. Please contact Felecia Jordan with any questions.

Office of Leadership and Innovation

NEW: Summer 2021 Graduate Courses for Dual Credit Instructors

IDOE continues its dual credit partnership with Indiana University, helping teachers receive the necessary credentials to meet the dual credit requirements of the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). Click here for additional course information or to request more information from Indiana University. Contact IDOE’s Scott Bogan with questions.

Office of Academics / Title Grants and Support

NEW: 2019-2020 NESP Financial End Report Due Wednesday, March 31

The Financial End Report for the 2019-2020 Non-English Speaking Program (NESP) grant is due for all grant recipients on Wednesday, March 31. Reports are submitted via this form. Grant details can be viewed in INtelligrants, accessed via the LINK portal. Please note, this is not the same system in which the grant application was completed. Contact Adam Pitt with any questions.


NEW: FY 2021 Final Title I Allocations

Final FY 2021 (SY 2020-2021) Title I allocations are now available. Districts received final award letters this week. Amendments for final allocations are due Sunday, May 30, and are now available in the Title I Application Center. Please reach out to Cole Dietrich with any questions.


REMINDER: Affirmation of Consultation Form

Updated Affirmation of Consultation Form (ACF) resources can be found on the IDOE Ombudsman page. The new ACF will be used for Title I-A; Title I-C; Title II-A; Title III-A; Title IV-A; and 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) and will replace all outdated documentation. You should make sure to discuss ESSER I and GEER I during Spring Consultation, if applicable. Please attach the new ACF to all future Title grant applications. The new ACF does not need to be uploaded for ESSER I or GEER I; also, the new ACF will not be used for ESSER II or GEER II, as neither are subject to Equitable Services. If you have any questions, please reach out to Andrew Mazur, or call 317-232-9150.

Offices of Early, Elementary, and Secondary Learning

NEW: Submitting Elementary Reading Plans

Indiana Administrative Code 511 IAC6.2-3.1 requires all public schools and state accredited nonpublic schools that have any students enrolled in kindergarten through grade three to complete and submit an elementary reading plan to IDOE by close of business on June 30. IDOE has streamlined the submission process, through use of a JotForm, for both public schools and state accredited nonpublic schools. This short how-to video has been created to assist schools in completing the new form. Please contact Joe Risch with questions.

Office of Information Technology

NEW: 2021 School Tech Plan Survey Now Available

The 2021 School Tech Plan Survey is now available for all Indiana public schools and will be open through Friday, April 23. The updated survey includes traditional questions as well as new questions focused on digital learning and the implications of the pandemic for your technology environment and practices. Completion of this survey is the requirement for all public schools to qualify for the connectivity formula grant, the common school fund, and grants from IDOE’s Office of Academics. Links to this year’s survey and the guidance document, along with data from previous years, are available on the Indiana School Tech Plan website. Contact Meri Carnahan with any questions.

Office of School Finance

NEW: Indirect Cost Rates

The Office of School Finance will be accepting applications from local educational agencies (LEAs) eligible to receive FY 2022 Indirect Cost Rates. Entities, including school corporations and charter schools, that provided Form 9 financial information for FY 2020 are eligible to receive a restricted and an unrestricted indirect cost rate in FY 2022. New charter schools are eligible to apply but will be subject to the median rate. The following memo includes the application instructions. Please direct any questions to


REMINDER: Common School Advancements

The Office of School Finance is now accepting applications for construction and technology loans from school corporations and school corporation career and technical education schools through Wednesday, April 14. Petitions must be received by the Office of School Finance by this date to be considered. Applications can be found in the Public School Finance Community in Moodle under Common School Funds > Spring. Questions can be directed here.


REMINDER: Summer School Estimated Costs

The deadline to submit the Estimated Costs Report and List of Courses for Summer School 2021 is Thursday, April 1. In order to be eligible for reimbursement of summer school instructional costs, the Estimated Costs Report, Course List, and Final Costs Report must be submitted by the posted deadlines. It is recommended that you print a copy of your submitted Estimated Costs and Courses for your records. Additional information can be found here, or if you need further assistance, please contact Teresa Hemmerle or Kathryn Roth.

Office of Special Education

NEW: IDOE Seeking Transition Aged Students for Stakeholder Input

The Office of Special Education is seeking Transition Aged Students (ages 14 to 22) to serve as stakeholders for Indiana’s State Performance Plan / Annual Performance Review, as required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Stakeholder involvement requirements include: engaging in setting targets, analyzing data, developing improvement strategies, and evaluating progress for each of the 17 federal special education indicators. Participating students will receive a certificate of attendance and a letter of thanks for their service to Indiana. For questions, or to provide contact information for interested students, please contact Michelle Oja.


NEW: Indiana Career Explorer (INCE) Administrative System Webinar

Kuder, the vendor for INCE, is holding a series of webinars for teachers of record, special education administrators, and special education directors to learn about the administrative side of INCE. Participants will learn how to access student information, student data, and more. There is a limit of 100 participants per session, and each participant must register separately. Below are links to register for the specific session you wish to attend. Please contact Michelle Oja with questions.

Office of School & Community Nutrition

REMINDER: Indiana Food Service Directors Recognized by USDA

Four Indiana food service directors have been recognized by USDA for their tremendous efforts. Learn more about these inspiring local program operators by watching this video, created by IDOE, to celebrate their achievements!

News From Our Partners

NEW FROM NEXTECH: Sponsorships available for the CSTA National Conference

Nextech is sponsoring 100 CSTA+ Members throughout the state to attend the virtual 2021 CSTA National Conference! Do you know a Computer Science teacher who could benefit from this? More information can be found here.


NEW FROM THE INAIAC: Scholarship Opportunities Available

The Indiana Native American Indian Affairs Commission (INAIAC) has scholarship opportunities available for the 2021-2022 academic year for college and university students. Do not miss this opportunity to apply for the John Daughtery, Jr. Scholarship. Visit this website for information, including the application and important dates. Contact Lisa Welch, Director of the INAIAC, with questions.


NEW FROM HANDS IN AUTISM ®: April 2021 Art Expo

Resilient is the theme for the 2021 Hands in Autism ® Art Expo, an online celebration of the arts and Autism Awareness Month. Individual artists and groups are encouraged to submit images and videos featuring their arts, crafts, mixed media, and performance arts to be displayed virtually. Artists with ASD, as well as those wanting to celebrate individuals with ASD, are also welcome. The deadline to enter is Friday, April 2. For more information contact Naomi Swiezy.


NEW FROM THE INDIANA RESOURCE CENTER FOR AUTISM: Free Family Support Webinar Coming Monday, April 12

The Indiana Resource Center for Autism will host a free family support webinar on Monday, April 12, titled Building Partnerships with Schools: How to Be an Active Member of Your Child’s Team. Kathryn Orvis, parent, and Kathy Klingerman, autism consultant, will share a road map on how they built a collaborative relationship and provide tips and helpful hints that may work for you. Sign up here or contact Cathy Pratt for more information.



With the release of the 2021 Early College Credit Report, the Indiana Commission for Higher Education officially unveiled a new name for the Statewide Transfer General Education Core: the Indiana College Core. Along with the rebrand, the Commission committed to building a suite of thoughtfully produced resources and strategies to support a more thorough understanding and improved implementation of the Core. Please take a few minutes to offer your thoughts and guidance via this survey by close of business Friday, April 9. Your input will help shape the messages and resources the Commission develops to support the Indiana College Core. If you have questions, contact Stephanie Sample.



All teachers and staff in PK-12 and childcare programs are able to schedule a vaccine at any state site by going to or calling 211. Appointments in your immediate area may be scheduled out several weeks, so be sure to look at surrounding counties, which may have earlier availability.


REMINDER FROM THE FAMILY AND SOCIAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION: Providing Pandemic Electronic Benefits to Indiana Families Portal, Policy, and Support Updates

The Division of Family Resources (DFR) continues to partner with Indiana schools to provide Pandemic Electronic Benefits (P-EBT) to Indiana families. Currently, the submission window is open for data submissions for January and February 2021, along with accepting corrections for October to December 2020. Please note that, due to changes in federal regulations, data must now be submitted by month.

Under the new guidelines, there is no five day minimum to meet Tier 2 eligibility status. That is, if a school was closed for one or more days due to the public health emergency, delayed opening by one or more days, or offered a hybrid model (between remote and in-person learning), the school will qualify as Tier-2 Eligible. This eligibility change extends to the October-December 2020 window. In addition, if even a single student participated in virtual learning due to the public health emergency, or missed school because they had to quarantine due to COVID-19, the school qualifies as a hybrid model and therefore qualifies as Tier-2 Eligible. More information is available in this communication.

To aid with the submissions process, DFR will be hosting office hours twice weekly on Tuesdays from 2 to 3 p.m. EST and Thursdays from 9 to 10 a.m. EST. These are informal drop-in sessions for data administrators to join as needed to ask questions regarding the data submission process and/or eligibility and program information. To join these sessions, please register using this link

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All Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) newsletters are located in one convenient location. Please find January updates and past issues here.

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Weekly Updates

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