Monday, March 30, 2009

State Education Mandates - Part 9

From time to time, particular around the budget period, reference is generally made to Franklin Public Schools having to support "unfunded mandates." I managed to find a listing of such compiled by the Massachusetts Association of School Committees. This is Part 9 of the series:


Professional Development - with the enactment of Education Reform, all teachers and other professional staff must be re-certified every five years. The district must provide professional development required for re-certification, with no cost to the individual employee.

Highly Qualified Staff – this requirement is a mandate that ensures employment of and reporting on highly qualified staff members and requires a substantial investment of time and money at all school levels. In many cases, there is insufficient guidance for districts that enables administrators to assist teachers and professional staff to meet the requirements established by DESE. (For example, appropriate licensure and completion of a designated number of courses is required for teaching assignments for which licensure may not exist at this time.)

Foster Care & State Wards

Districts are required to educate students who have been placed by the state in foster care and state ward settings. If a student has special needs, the town is responsible for that student’s education, even if the student is enrolled in a day or residential school that is not in town.

• Districts are also responsible for the transportation for the student. However, the local district is only responsible for regular day/vocational education of these pupils. When that student requires special education, which cost can be billed back to the district from which the student came.

Grant Percentages of Federal Grant Funds to Private Schools

School districts are required to give a percentage of grants funded under the No Child Left Behind Act to all private schools whether or not our students attend the schools. The percentage is based on total school and district populations. The district must provide reading services from its Title I grant to all schools within the state that our students attend if the schools meet certain criteria.
The full listing is available here (DOC)

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