Dear LEA Leaders and Staff:
OSSE is committed to a successful enrollment audit for the 2017-18 school year. We know that there were a number of challenges with the 2016-17 enrollment audit, and are committed to ensuring a significantly improved process this year. We are writing today to share some of the key steps we have taken and changes you can expect.
Earlier this year, we conducted after-action reviews, sought feedback from Enrollment Audit points of contact and other LEA/school personnel who play a role in the enrollment audit process, and solicited suggestions from critical educational partners to improve enrollment audit design and implementation. We are implementing the following key changes to the enrollment audit process that will help streamline the process while continuing our commitment to the accurate count of students and to residency verification:
- Redefined role for auditor – For the upcoming fall, the auditors will play a narrower role, focused on residency verification (see more details below) Because we now have the data systems and LEA coordination to support timely and accurate collection of data for each student, we no longer need to conduct a student-by-student physical headcount. However, OSSE auditors will still visit each LEA to conduct an on-site verification of residency documents.
- Greater clarity and transparency for LEAs – We will be deploying a newly developed Enrollment Audit Application that will provide unprecedented transparency to Enrollment Audit points of contact at each LEA by allowing them to track their student data in real time throughout the phases of the enrollment audit process.
- Balanced focus on residency verification –
- In April 2017, new residency regulations took effect that streamline some processes and provide more clarity on previously ambiguous areas such as custodial situations and residency verification for special populations.
- As in previous years, 100 percent of the residency verification forms will be checked onsite at the LEA. However, this year, instead of only checking 10 percent of supporting residency documentation, we will begin with checking 20 percent of supporting documentation. If a school fails the 20 percent sample, OSSE will review 100 percent of documentation in the current year.
- Streamlined process and faster completion. This year, the Resolution and Desktop Appeals phases will be integrated; LEAs will have the opportunity to correct all data during the six-weeks of the fieldwork phase, eliminating the need for multiple appeals processes. Outstanding issues involving residency and duplicative enrollment can be resolved in the final appeals phase.
- Completion of the audit by January 2018: OSSE has re-worked the timeline to allow the process to end earlier than in previous years. LEAs will receive final enrollment audit determinations by December, and the final report will be released by January.*
We expect to release the 2017-18 School Year Enrollment Audit Handbook by Wednesday, July 26. In August, beginning with the Start of School Summit, we will provide a series of trainings to thoroughly review LEA responsibilities and changes in the enrollment audit process. Please see the attached training calendar. We also encourage you to review our Start of School Campaign to learn about all the priority areas we’re improving for the start of the 2017-18 school year and the actions we need from you in order to get your LEA start-of-school-ready with OSSE.
Finally, below is a high-level outline of the 2017-18 school year Enrollment Audit timeline.
|Thursday, Oct. 5, 2017||Launch of the SY18 Enrollment Audit, when enrollment data is frozen|
|Oct. 6 through Oct. 12, 2017||LEA Enrollment Review Period|
|Friday, Oct. 13, 2017||LEAs unaudited enrollment certification due; Child Count anomalies acknowledgment due|
|Oct. 16 through Nov. 9, 2017||On-Site review of residency documentation|
|Oct. 16 through Nov. 17, 2017||Issue Resolution Period|
|Friday, Nov. 17, 2017||LEA certification of Child Count and educational environments data due; LEA data certification due|
|Nov. 27 – Dec. 1, 2017||Final Appeals|
|Friday, Dec. 8, 2017||Final enrollment audit determinations sent to LEAs|
|Friday, Dec. 15, 2017||LEAs certify final audited enrollment|
|January 2018||Enrollment Audit Final Report Released|
We are excited about the improvements made for SY 2017-18 Enrollment Audit. We look forward to working with each LEA and their respective schools to make sure this is the best enrollment audit yet.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to Rehva Jones, Strategic Planning and Performance Officer, at [email protected] or Terasita Edwards, Lead Compliance Officer, at [email protected].
*Updated on 7/27/17 to ensure consistency with other communications.