December Alternative Learning Update

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January 17, 2020 ALE Administrator Meeting

Please register for the 2020 ALE Administrators meeting. This meeting will be held on Friday January 17, 2020 from 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM at South Puget Sound Community College, Lacey Campus.

The event is free of charge. Registration will include morning refreshments, and lunch. Clock hours will be provided by OSPI. 

Registration will be open until Friday January 3, 2020 at 5:00 PM.

Questions? Contact Anissa Sharratt.  

November ALE Advisory Committee

The ALE Advisory Committee met on November 20, 2019. Representatives from programs across the state, Washington Association for Learning Alternatives (WALA), and the Alternative Learning Department (ALD) discussed the following topics: 

  • ALE rule change update
  • Professional learning from national conference attendees
  • Substantially similar reporting
  • January ALE Administrator Meeting planning
  • ALE training needs

For questions about the ALE Advisory Committee, please contact WALA or the ALD.  

Online Learning Multidistrict Application Deadline

We will accept applications for Approved Online Course Providers and Multi District Online School Programs during January 2020.  More information about the application process can be found on our website.  Please contact Nicole González, Online Learning Program Manager, to schedule an informational session if you are interested in applying. 

Online Learning CEDARS Reporting Guidance

There are two new fields in CEDARS when you code a course as “online”. These fields designate the approved online provider and program the course should be attributed to. OSPI has created updated guidance on these, please see this document.  If you have questions, please contact Nicole González, Online Learning Program Manager.  

District Responsibilities When Students are Absent

The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) recently released guidance on district responsibilities for reporting, claiming and engaging students when absent. Please review Bulletin B080-19 for additional information.

Call for Presenters - WALA Spring Conference

The 2020 WALA Spring Conference will be held March 5-7 at Skamania Lodge in Stevenson, WA. In preparation for the conference, WALA is currently accepting session proposals and vendor requests.

  • Submit session proposals here by January 24, 2020.
  • Contact WALA for vendor information.  

Call for Presenters - 2020 Student Support Conference

The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction would like to invite you to the 2020 Student Support Conference. This year’s theme is 2020 Vision: Every Student Healthy, Safe, Engaged, and Supported. The conference is May 14–15, 2020 at the Wenatchee Convention Center.

We are soliciting innovative and inspiring breakout sessions for the conference and invite you to consider presenting by responding to this online call for presenters. Proposals can be submitted through February 3, 2020.

The conference offers a diverse array of presenters and perspectives focused on whole-child approaches specifically geared for K-12 educators and their community partners who work closely with schools. Foundational themes include strength-based, culturally relevant practices and strategies to foster resilience that enhances the social, emotional, physical, and behavioral health of students and staff. We hope you can join us.

Compliance Corner - Choice Transfer

Choice Transfers in ALE

OSPI has recognized that the State Auditor’s Office has been regularly including choice transfer documentation review in their school apportionment audits for all settings.

For students who live outside of your school district who wish to enroll to your program, a choice transfer must in place before the first date that the student is claimed for apportionment. To be valid, the choice transfer must:

  • Be student specific.
  • Be approved by both school district superintendents (or designees).
  • Have a clear beginning and end date.
  • Retain documentation in the event of a compliance review or state audit.
  • For transfers to an ALE school or program, this process is completed online through the Standard Choice Transfer System (SCTS).

Per RCW 28A.225.020  (3) “All school districts must use the standard choice transfer form for releasing a student to a nonresident school district for the purposes of accessing an alternative learning experience program.”

The SCTS meets all the state level requirements for a successful choice transfer and as a result many school districts are utilizing it for all nonresident transfers, not just ALE.

Parent Portal

At the request of school districts, OSPI developed a Choice Transfer Parent Portal for the online Standard Choice Transfer System. This portal allows parents to submit their choice transfer request online with the information feeding directly into the resident district’s STCS. Some resident districts have opted out of the parent portal – instead requiring parents to submit a paper request or come into the office to request the choice transfer. For transfers to an ALE school or program, the district will still need to process the choice transfer through the online SCTS.

Additional Resources

Upcoming Events

  • GATE Equity Webinar Series Regular monthly webinars. Information and registration available through the GATE website.
  • 2020 ALE Administrators Meeting January 17, 2020 Lacey, WA. Registration for this meeting is now open.
  • Digital Learning Annual Conference (DLAC) February 24-26, 2020, Austin, TX, For more information, visit the DLAC website
  • 45th Annual WALA Spring Conference March 5-7, 2020, Skamania Lodge, Stevenson, WA. For more information, visit the WALA website.

Contact Us!

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

For specific questions, contact us by email:

ALE Programs: Anissa Sharratt
ALE/Reengagement Compliance: Liz Quayle
Online Learning: Nicole González