As one part of its accountability system, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education oversees local compliance with education requirements through the Coordinated Program Review (CPR). All reviews cover selected requirements in the following areas:
selected requirements from the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA-2004); the federal regulations promulgated under that Act at 34 CFR Part 300; M.G.L. c. 71B, and the Massachusetts Board of Education's Special Education regulations (603 CMR 28.00), as amended effective March 1, 2007.
selected requirements from M.G.L. c. 71A, the state law that governs the provision of education to English language learners, and 603 CMR 14.00, as well as the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 and Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. All districts that enroll limited English proficient students are reviewed using a combination of updated standards and a self-assessment instrument overseen by the Department's Office of English Language Acquisition and Academic Achievement (OELAAA) and Program Quality Assurance Services (PQA), including a request for information regarding ELE programs and staff qualifications.
Some reviews also cover selected requirements in:
career/vocational technical education programs under the federal Carl D. Perkins Vocational and Technical Education Act of 1998 and M.G.L. c. 74.
Districts providing Title I services participate in Title I program monitoring during the same year they are scheduled for a Coordinated Program Review. Details regarding the Title I program monitoring process are available at Title I / Federal Support Programs website.
Starting with the 2007-2008 SY, the Department commenced the piloting of a new web- based approach to comprehensive special education monitoring. In the 2008-2009 SY, nine school districts and charter schools from that year's monitoring cycle were reviewed using the web-based approach, and in the 2009-2010 SY half of all school districts and charter schools in that year's monitoring cycle were monitored using the web-based approach. By the 2010-2011 SY, all school districts and charter schools in that year's monitoring cycle were engaged in web-based monitoring for special education. Starting with the 2011-2012 SY, the Department commenced the web-based approach to comprehensive civil rights monitoring. The web-based monitoring system (WBMS) allows both districts and the Department to submit, review and exchange documents and information through the Department's security portal. This new approach combines familiar elements from the standard CPR procedures in combination with new features that strengthen district/school accountability and oversight for special education and civil rights on a continuous basis.
Self-Assessment Phase: This is a requirement for all districts/schools participating in WBMS and is completed in the year prior to the onsite review.
Desk Review Phase: A Monitoring Team Chairperson, who is assigned to each district/school, reviews the district/school's responses to questions regarding the critical elements for appropriate policies, procedures, and practices, as well as actual documents and data submissions by criteria. The district/school's student record review data and explanatory comments are examined by focus area and by criteria. The outcome of this review, along with Indicator data collected by the Department and three-year trend data from the Problem Resolution System, is used to determine the scope and nature of the Department's onsite activities.
Onsite Verification Phase: This includes activities selected from the following:
At the end of the onsite visit, the team will hold an informal exit meeting to summarize its comments for the superintendent or charter school leader and other administrative staff he or she chooses. Within approximately 45 business days of the onsite visit, the Monitoring Team Chairperson will forward to the superintendent or charter school leader a Draft Report containing comments from the Program Review. The Draft Report comments for special education and civil rights are provided to the district/school online through WBMS. These comments will, once the district has had an opportunity to respond, form the basis for any findings by the Department. The district will then have 10 business days to review the report for accuracy before the publication of a Final Report with ratings and findings (see below). The Final Report will be issued within approximately 60 business days of the conclusion of the onsite visit and posted on the Department's website at Public School Coordinated Program Review Reports webpage.
Ratings. In the Final Report, the onsite team gives a rating for each compliance criterion it has reviewed; those ratings are "Commendable," "Implemented," "Implementation in Progress," "Partially Implemented," "Not Implemented," and "Not Applicable." "Implementation in Progress," used for criteria containing new or updated legal requirements, means that the district has implemented any old requirements contained in the criterion and is training staff or beginning to implement the new requirements in such a way that the onsite team anticipates that the new requirements will be implemented by the end of the school year.
Findings. The onsite team includes a narrative statement in the Final Report for each criterion that it rates "Commendable," "Partially Implemented," "Not Implemented," "Implementation in Progress," or "Not Applicable" explaining the basis for the rating. It may also include findings for other related criteria.
Where criteria are found "Partially Implemented" or "Not Implemented," the district or charter school must propose corrective action to bring those areas into compliance with the relevant statutes and regulations. This corrective action plan (CAP) will be due to the Department within 20 business days after the issuance of the Final Report and is subject to the Department's review and approval. Department staff will offer districts and charter schools technical assistance on the content and requirements for developing an approvable CAP. The approved CAP will be posted on the Department's website at Public School Corrective Action Plans webpage. Department staff will provide ongoing technical assistance as the school or district is implementing the approved corrective action plan. School districts and charter schools must demonstrate effective resolution of noncompliance identified by the Department as soon as possible but in no case later than one year from the issuance of the Department's Final Program Review Report.
Coordinated Program Review Reports
Mid-cycle Review Reports
Corrective Action Plans (CAP's as of January 2010)
Last Updated: October 17, 2017
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
75 Pleasant Street, Malden, MA 02148-4906
Voice: (781) 338-3000
TTY: (800) 439-2370
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