An Update From the Indiana Department of Education for September 10, 2021

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A Message from Dr. Katie Jenner

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This week has flown by! I hope you enjoyed the well-deserved, long weekend! As I reflect on this short, but eventful, four-day week, I want to share a bit about an exciting event sponsored by Greater Fort Wayne, Inc., as well as an update on the ADM question that we have heard from several of you.

Let’s start with the Greater Fort Wayne, Inc. event. Similar to last week, I always appreciate the opportunity to connect with a variety of local community leaders in the same room. In this case, Greater Fort Wayne, Inc. brought together leaders in K-12, higher education, philanthropy, government, and business to collaborate and brainstorm how to best work together to improve pathways and opportunities for students.

As this is a common theme throughout conversations statewide, including last week’s newsletter highlighting work in East Central Indiana, and then again in Allen County this week, the local synergy is really what drives progress for students. Dr. Mark Daniel, Fort Wayne Superintendent, is at the center of this work, championing innovation and partnerships that will undoubtedly positively impact their students and community. It was inspiring to be in a room filled with leaders from all sectors who are committed to making this shared impact.

We know that upon high school graduation, our students will be entering a rapidly changing and diverse global economy of which has been further magnified by COVID-19 impacts (e.g. technology advancement) -- an economy and workforce where fewer jobs require only a high school diploma and more jobs require some form of postsecondary credential, which may include a high value industry certification. As students develop the foundational knowledge and skills in elementary and middle school and ultimately walk across the graduation stage, we know that every year in the life of a child matters to ensure they are best equipped to be successful. The synergy in Fort Wayne is palpable, and they are certainly a community to watch!

Before I sign off, I also want to provide another quick update on some of the ADM questions we have received regarding potential unintended financial consequences resulting from students being quarantined or testing positive for COVID-19. Since ADM is outlined in state law, we are working with members of the Indiana General Assembly to identify a legislative solution to address these concerns. We know how hard you have been working to keep students learning safely in person, and we will share details with you as soon as possible.

Thank you for being a partner in this important work!

Office of Accountability

NEW: Guidance for Missing Students and Graduation Rate

Please read this guidance on the process for determining whether a high school student is considered “missing” for purposes of graduation rate. If you have questions, please email the Office of School Accountability.


REMINDER: Guidance Regarding Instructional Time and Attendance

Please read this guidance on school responsibilities for adhering to instructional time and student attendance requirements. If you have questions, please email the Office of School Accountability.

Office of Educator Preparation, Licensing, and Talent

NEW: Students Withdrawing to Homeschool

This memo answers several questions that typically arise when parents decide to homeschool. Contact Kimb Stewart with any questions.


NEW: Alternative Education Grant Renewal

The 2021-2022 Alternative Education Grant Renewal Application is now open and will close on Friday, October 29. Alternative Education programs must complete the grant renewal in order to claim Alternative Education grant funds for the 2021-2022 academic year. Click here for more information. Contact Kimb Stewart with any questions.

Office of Information Technology

NEW: Important Updates for Membership Reporting

Schools should be actively reviewing student enrollment data in Data Exchange for Membership reporting. It is critical that schools are also reporting student attendance data and student county of residence, as both are required for membership. Omission of this data will result in a student being excluded from membership. Questions about Data Exchange may be directed to


REMINDER: Submitting P-EBT Eligible Days through Data Exchange for the 2021-2022 School Year

IDOE will be retrieving the Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer (P-EBT) eligibility data and rosters from Data Exchange for the 2021-2022 school year.  P-EBT will utilize attendance day types and Free/Reduced Lunch (FRL) eligibility to determine eligible students and benefits. Schools should code these students just as they normally would, and the data will flow directly from IDOE to the Family and Social Services Administration (FSSA), the state agency administering the P-EBT program. More details are available in the full memo, including guidance for how to provide reason codes for absences so your students receive funds for each eligible day under the program guidelines. Questions about Data Exchange may be directed to


REMINDER: SIS Vendor Status

IDOE is continually working with SIS vendors toward their Indiana Ed-Fi badging of specific data elements required for 2021-2022 reporting in Data Exchange. For a list of all SIS vendors and their certification status, please review the 2022 Data Exchange Vendor Certification Status list. Questions about Data Exchange may be directed to


REMINDER: School Office Hours for Data Exchange

IDOE will be hosting weekly office hours on Tuesdays from 11 a.m. to noon ET and Thursdays from 3 to 4 p.m. ET. These office hours are intended for school personnel to ask questions and troubleshoot support with Data Exchange implementation. These meetings will be drop-in style, so feel free to stay as long as you can. To join the office hours, log in to the Data Exchange Training and Community course in Moodle and select the page for Data Exchange Office Hours. Questions about Data Exchange may be directed to


REMINDER: Data Exchange - Data Reporting Source of Truth

The 2021-2022 school year establishes Data Exchange as the source of truth for all data reporting. Specific instructions for parallel submission with the STN Application Center will be provided as needed. For the current school year, all SPN/STN should continue to be created in the STN Application Center. Details regarding Data Exchange can be found in Moodle. Additional information and training regarding Data Exchange implementation can be found in the Data Exchange Training and Community course in Moodle (no enrollment key required). Questions about Data Exchange may be directed to

Office of Leadership and Innovation

NEW: Attend the Indy Autonomous Challenge at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Students, families, and educators are invited to the Day of Innovation at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Saturday, October 23! This free event, held in conjunction with the Indy Autonomous Challenge, will provide students with the unique opportunity to learn more about STEM and innovations behind autonomous vehicles, followed by a unique opportunity to watch these cars zoom around the famous oval track (without drivers) in an all-new challenge. More information is available here, including information regarding how to register for free tickets. Contact Rebecca Estes with any questions.


NEW: Teacher Appreciation Grant Guidance

Local educational agencies (including charter and virtual charter schools) must submit a Teacher Appreciation Grant (TAG) policy for approval to by Friday, September 17. Please see the TAG Policy Submission memo here. Additionally, TAG distribution guidance related to House Enrolled Act 1001 (2021) can be found here. Contact Rebecca Estes with any questions.


NEW: Innovation Teacher Leaders Cohort Application Open Through Friday, September 24

The application is now open for up to 45 Indiana high school teachers to participate in the inaugural Innovation Teacher Leaders Cohort! IDOE's partnership with the StartedUpFoundation (SEUF) aims to build the capacity of innovative high school teacher leaders and enhance opportunities for high school students with the goal of creating an ecosystem of innovation and entrepreneurship throughout Indiana. For more information and to apply, click here. Questions can be directed to Rebecca Estes.


REMINDER: State of Indiana Partners with College Football Playoff Foundation to Support Educators

As part of the College Football Playoff (CFP) Foundation’s Extra Yard for Teachers Week, Hoosier teachers are invited to visit an Indiana state park, reservoir, or state forest for free on Sunday, September 12. In addition, IDOE and the CFP Foundation will host special recognition events for teachers on that day at five state parks across Indiana: Salamonie Lake (Huntington County), Indiana Dunes State Park (Porter County), Fort Harrison State Park (Marion County), Brown County State Park (Brown County), and Patoka Lake (Dubois County). These events will include food, music, activities, and resources for teachers and their families. More information is available here, including a video to share with your school teams. Contact Rebecca Estes with any questions.


REMINDER: Staff Performance Evaluation Plan Submission

Legal Standard 12 requires each public school corporation to provide a copy of its staff performance evaluation plan to IDOE. School corporations must also submit their staff performance evaluation plan to IDOE for approval in order to qualify for any grant funding related to IC 20-28-11.5-8(d). This includes the Teacher Appreciation Grant. Staff performance evaluation plans must be submitted via DOE Online by Friday, September 17. For more information, click here. Contact Rebecca Estes with questions.


REMINDER: Superintendents and Principals Encouraged to Nominate Educators for Emerging Leaders Recognition

IDOE’s Office of Leadership and Innovation is looking for confidential recommendations of teacher leaders representing the very best educators in Indiana. These emerging leaders must have between five and 15 years of experience, demonstrate leadership beyond the classroom, and positively affect school culture and student achievement. Superintendents and principals may submit recommendations here. Please contact Rebecca Estes with any questions.

Office of School Finance

REMINDER: Summer School Final Cost Report

The Summer School Final Cost Report submission window closes today, Friday, September 10. Information regarding the summer school program can be found in Moodle. Contact Teresa Hemmerle with questions.


REMINDER: Verification of Residency for Membership

Please review this guidance for verification of Indiana residency as it relates to reporting a student for membership. If you have questions, please contact Melissa Ambre.


REMINDER: Membership Presentation

Please review this presentation regarding membership. If you have questions, please contact Melissa Ambre.


REMINDER: School Year 2021-2022 Membership Count Dates

Please review this memo regarding School Year 2021-2022 count dates. If you have questions, please email Melissa Ambre.


REMINDER: Financial Transparency Portal

Please remember to upload your school corporation’s financial transparency data for January to June 2021 into the portal by Sunday, October 31. See the School Finance Moodle Community for a presentation explaining the upload process. Contact with any questions.

Office of School Improvement

UPDATE: School Improvement Plans

All public and accredited nonpublic schools are required to submit strategic and continuous school improvement and achievement plans each year (IC 20-31-5 and IC 20-31-6). Initial plans are developed for a three-year period and are reviewed and revised annually. Plans for the 2021-2022 school year are due Friday, October 8 and can be submitted at DOE Online. Additional information may be found in this updated memo. Contact Ron Sandlin with questions.

Office of Student Supports and Accessibility

NEW: After the Good Cause Exemption Guidance

After receiving a good cause exemption, English learners and students with disabilities will need additional, focused reading instruction directed at the skill deficiencies revealed by the Individual Student Report. These documents, for English learners and students with disabilities, walk both educators and families through how to support students who qualified for the waiver. Contact Adam Pitt for questions regarding English learners and Dr. Nancy Holsapple for questions regarding students with disabilities.

Office of Teaching and Learning/Digital Learning

NEW: INLearning Partnership

IDOE, the Learning Lab, and Keep Indiana Learning are pleased to announce the launch of the INLearning Partnership to provide comprehensive professional learning resources for Indiana educators. Join us for a webinar to learn more about these offerings on Tuesday, September 21 at 2:30 p.m. (ET). Register here. Contact Diana Gill with any questions.


REMINDER: STEM Certification

The window for STEM School Certification applications is open! The updated STEM Certification Guide, STEM Evaluation Rubric, and other resources are currently available here. For any questions or to schedule your pre-application meeting, please contact Dana Hartzell, STEM Specialist.


REMINDER: Networking and Professional Development for Leadership of Virtual and Hybrid Options

The Digital Learning Team is offering two opportunities to support those leading virtual and hybrid options. This includes a networking series, called Leadership Link, which provides a virtual opportunity to connect with others leading this work in the state, as well as a series of workshops. These workshops will be held regionally alongside a virtual option. Learn more about the workshops and register using the information on this flyer. Contact Alisha Foor with questions.


REMINDER: Wednesday Professional Development with IDOE 

Join us in the Learning Lab every Wednesday from 4 to 4:30 p.m. ET for workshops on focused topics delivered by IDOE team members. Our first workshop is available on-demand in the lab, and you can find additional September workshops by clicking here. To register, visit the Learning Lab calendar by clicking here. To create a free Learning Lab account, visit the LINK Portal or the Learning Lab website directly, and use your school email to log in. Contact Diana Gill with any questions.


REMINDER: Fall Digital Learning Book Study

Join the IDOE Office of Digital Learning’s fall book study featuring UDL and Blended Learning: Thriving in Flexible Learning Landscapes by Katie Novak and Catlin R. Tucker. Asynchronous discussions will begin the week of Monday, September 20. The book study will last nine weeks and will be worth up to 18 PGPs. Join the course using the enrollment key “blended.” Contact Meri Carnahan with questions.

Office of Title Grants and Support

NEW: 21st Century Community Learning Centers Cohort 11 Funding Awards Announced

The 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) program is a competitive grant, focused on funding out-of-school time programs in high-need, low-performing communities. Cohort 11 funding awards were announced on Tuesday, August 31. A list of those awarded can be found here. For questions on the 21st CCLC program, contact Erin Busk.


NEW: Free Professional Development Opportunities

IDOE is partnering with several professional development organizations to provide free training opportunities for local educational agencies that may be new to implementing out-of-school time programming. For more information on available opportunities, click here. For questions, contact Erin Busk.


NEW: College Board Advanced Placement Overview Workshops

College Board and IDOE are providing free workshops focused on delivering Advanced Placement (AP) excellence in the 2021-2022 school year. These workshops will cover state funding for AP exams, the optimal use of AP Potential data for success in specific AP courses, and how SAT Suite scores and AP exam participation and performance work together to support students’ college and career readiness and subsequent college acceptance. The intended audience is AP coordinators and other staff supporting assessments and curriculum. For additional information and to register, please click on the links below.

News From Our Partners


Please see updated COVID-19 Guidance from the Indiana Department of Health regarding masking, quarantining, and information on vaccinations. The graphics have been updated in response to feedback. Questions can be directed to



The Children’s Policy and Law Initiative of Indiana will offer an upcoming training session featuring national trainer, Jim Sporleder. The session will focus on trauma, resilience, and the importance of relationship-based culture. The training session will take place on Thursday, November 4. Click here for more information and here to register. For questions, contact Fiona Makowski.



The Indiana State Museum is offering fall camp opportunities for students in grades one through six. Camp will be offered from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., beginning Monday, October 11 and ending Friday, October 22. To learn more, visit the Indiana State Museum online or contact Hazel Theriault.



The Go Teach Mentorship Program encourages high school student athletes to explore the potential paths to a career in education through leadership development, mentorship, building connections, and college planning. The deadline to apply for 2021 has been extended to Wednesday, September 15. Learn more here, and contact Chelsea Wilson with any questions.

IDOE Newsletters Centrally Located

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

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