August Alternative Learning Update

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Welcome Back

Welcome back to the 2019-20 school year. We hope you had a fun and restful summer! Our team in the Alternative Learning Department looks forward to another great year of partnerships and collaboration. If we can provide any guidance or technical assistance in the coming weeks, please don't hesitate to reach out to us at

Deadline: ALE Year End Report – Due August 31st

  • School districts that claimed ALE enrollment during the 2018-2019 school year are required to submit an ALE Year End Report. The deadline, August 31st, is approaching quickly! This deadline is important because the method through which data is submitted to OSPI will roll over into the new school year in September, at which time access to the 2018-19 school year data will no longer be available. For additional information on this report, please review the following resources:

Important Note:  In the SAFS application, where the ALE Year End Report is submitted, the course type definitions for site-based and remote included under question two are inaccurate.  New course type definitions went into effect for the 2018-19 school year and those new definitions are not reflected in the SAFS application.  Please refer to the course type section of the Guide to Offering Alternative Learning Experiences for accurate definitions or contact the ALD for more information.  We apologize for this error and any confusion that may arise. 

Resources for New Programs and Staff

Are you a new staff member working with ALE? Or, are you interested in learning more about ALE? Check out the following tools and resources for educators new to ALE. 

Truancy in ALE Update

Thank you to everyone who participated in the Truancy in ALE webinar on May 30, 2019. The great discussion, thoughts, and feedback were appreciated. As mentioned during the May webinar, a follow-up webinar had been planned for August 2019. Due to outstanding questions regarding the overlap in rules between nonresident students and district responsibilities, this webinar has been postponed. Stay tuned for more information and contact the ALD with any questions.

ALE Rule Change and Methods of Participation

The ALD is exploring potential rule changes to WAC 392-121-182 for implementation in the 2020-2021 school year. A CR 101 has been filed and will be available shortly on the OSPI Rule Making Activity website. The goal of rule changes would be to:

  • Evaluate whether rule changes are needed and if so, include them as part of the WAC revision around truancy in ALE settings planned during the 2019-20 school year, as this would allow for one comprehensive WAC revision.
  • Move the existing ALE rules from the finance WAC and into its own WAC chapter.
  • Reorganize the current language into a more simplified and accessible version.
  • Review current language around substantially similar to determine whether edits can be made to improve clarity of requirements.

The ALE community is invited to participate in this discussion and participation can happen in multiple ways including:

    • Monitoring the newsletter and/or website communications for updates.
    • Attending informational webinars during the fall and winter of the 2019-20 school year (dates TBD).
    • Connecting with the ALD directly to discuss status updates or request information.
    • Participating in a variety of in-person events scheduled across the state beginning in the late fall of 2019-20 (dates and locations TBD).

Multiple Pathways to Graduation – Update

In 2019, the Washington State Legislature provided students with multiple pathways to graduation by passing House Bill (HB) 1599. Wondering how this legislation will impact your programs and students? 

Visit the OSPI Graduation Requirements website for more information including:

  • An overview of graduation requirements
  • A comprehensive FAQ about HB 1599
  • An OSPI presentation, including slides and notes

Online Learning Program Guidance Webinar

Please join us for an Online School Program Guidance Webinar on Thursday, August 22, 2019, 10:30-11:30 am.

The following will be discussed:

  • When to Apply as an Online School Program
  • How to Apply as an Online School Program
  • Reporting Requirements
  • Re-Approvals
  • Online Learning Priorities for 2019-2020

Compliance Corner

Starting up the new school year: What needs to be in place for the first enrollment claim?

On or before the 4th school day of September, the following items must be in place for each student enrolled in an alternative learning experiences (ALE) course:

  1. Written Student Learning Plan
    1. Student name & grade
    2. Beginning & ending dates
    3. List of courses, each with teacher, ALE course type & CEDARS code
    4. Estimated weekly hours & method of contact
    5. Signed & dated by certificated teacher
  2. Statement of Understanding
    1. Signed and dated by the parent/guardian
  3. Evidence of participation
    1. Within the first 4 days of the current school year
  4. Choice Transfer for students residing out of district
    1. *Approved* on or before the count date

Beyond this, schools must have syllabi available on file or in electronic form for each course.

Before the October count, be sure to verify that each student has had weekly contact and a monthly progress review communicated via direct personal contact with a certificated teacher (or school based support staff if the student’s schedule is fully online).

Check WAC 392-121-182 for more details, and start your year on the right foot.

Upcoming Events

  • GATE Equity Webinar Series Regular monthly webinars. Information and registration available through the GATE website
  • Interactive Webinar: ALE Compliance Tips for New Programs. 12:00 PM on August 19, 2019 Contact Liz Quayle for more information
  • Online Learning Program Guidance webinar 10:30-11:30 AM August 22, 2019. For more information, contact Nicole Gonzalez
  • Suicide Prevention Event September 10, 2019. More information available here
  • ALE Compliance Webinar:  Updates, Reminders, & Tips. 12:00 PM on September 23, 2019. Contact Liz Quayle for more information
  • Online Learning Advisory Committee 9:30 AM on October 16, 2019. For more information, visit the Online Learning website
  • Fall WALA Workshops October/November 2019 For more information, visit the WALA website 
  • iNACOL Symposium October 28-31, 2019 Palm Springs, CA For more information, visit the iNACOL website
  • NAEA Conference October 28-30, 2019 Tampa, FL, for more information, visit the NAEA website
  • 2019 BECCA Conference November 6-9, 2019 Ellensburg, WA, additional information here
  • 2020 ALE Administrators Meeting January 17, 2020 Lacey, WA, More information to follow

Contact Us!

For more information about Alternative Learning, please contact us as, or visit our newly updated website here.