June 9 2014

Published: 6/10/2014 1:00 PM
MONDAY SUPERINTENDENT E-MAIL – 6/9/14
 
As part of our effort to streamline communications and cut down on the number of e-mails you receive, here is a Monday E-Mail that combines several items into one communication.

Please read the Monday E-mail as it contains information about the following KDE-related items:
• 2014-2015 Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Program RFA
• Kentucky Green Ribbon Schools 2015 Application Available
• 2014 Joint ISLN/KLA Summer Meeting: Keep Calm and Be Effective
• Fidelity (Performance) Bond Submission
• Bond of Depository Submission
• Non-Traditional Instruction Program goes statewide
• New Guidance for District of Innovation Applications
• Guidelines to aid school districts using the Flex Focus transferability options (Attachment)
• Fiscal Year 2015 Comprehensive District Improvement Plan Assurances
• Fiscal Year 2015 New Forms and Instructions for Federal Cash Requests
• National Dropout Prevention Network Conference – November 2-5, 2014
• Attention Superintendents: NAEP is Coming!
Kentucky Teacher – Differentiated instruction
 
Also, take a look at the items under the section titled “Items from Outside Agencies”.
 
If you have questions about the specific items, please see the contact information for each item.
Items from KDE

2014-2015 Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Program RFA
Recent Federal legislation, Public Law 110-234, The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008, authorized funds for expansion of the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP) to all 50 States, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Elementary schools that represent a State’s highest free and reduced price enrollment are eligible to participate in the program and are given priority for being selected due to their high need level. The purpose of the program is to increase fresh fruit and vegetable consumption in elementary schools.

Kentucky has been allocated $2,919,403 for use during the period beginning July 1, 2014 and ending June 30, 2015. The level of funds provided to any one school must be calculated by funding each student at $50 to $75 per year.
 
The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE), Office of Administration & Support is issuing a Request for Application (RFA) from elementary schools, schools containing grades PreK-6, or any combination thereof, to participate in the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program during the upcoming 2014-2015 school year. The RFA is posted on the KDE Competitive Grants web page.

The application deadline is Monday, June 23rd at 4:00 p.m. (EDT).
 
Kentucky Green Ribbon Schools 2015 Application Available
The Kentucky Green Ribbon Schools (GRS) application for 2015 is now available on the Green Ribbon Schools webpage: http://education.ky.gov/districts/fac/Pages/Green-Ribbon-Schools-Application-Process.aspx. Application is a two-step process:

(1) The first step is to submit a letter of intent to the Kentucky Department of Education. Superintendents desiring to participate should assign a point of contact in the district who will e-mail the district’s intent to Sherri Craig (sherri.craig@education.ky.gov) by October 15, 2014; and
(2) The second step is to complete the KY GRS application available on the GRS webpage listed above. Applications are due by December 1, 2014.

Please visit the U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools (ED-GRS) webpage for resource links and other related information. If you have any questions, please contact Sherri Craig at sherri.craig@education.ky.gov or (502) 564-4326, ext. 4426.

2014 Joint ISLN/KLA Summer Meeting:  Keep Calm and Be Effective
Does every single student AND educator in every single school in your district have what they need to be successful?  On June 26, hear engaging and relevant TED Talks and participate in concurrent sessions focused on effective teaching, learning, and leadership strategies from Kentucky educators at the Joint ISLN/KLA Summer Meeting.
 
June 27 will be an optional day with facilitated work sessions around issues critical to Kentucky districts and schools (be sure to identify topics you would like to work on when you register).  
 
Registration is FREE and open to ANY educator (P-16) in the state on a first come/first served basis. Ideally, all Leadership Network participants – teacher, school, and district leaders—would attend.  Sessions will feature KY educators!  While there is no registration fee, all travel related expenses are the participants’ responsibility. EILA Credit will be awarded!
 
The opening session on June 26 will run from 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. ET.  June 27 will run 8:30-11:30 a.m. ET.  Visit the website below to see the matrix of presentations and to register.
 
Register by June 13 at the conference website:  http://www.kypromiseccr.com/.
 
Fidelity (Performance) Bond Submission
This is a reminder as mentioned in the “May/June 2014 Finance Newsletter” the window for submitting the fiscal year 2015 “Fidelity Bond” through the SEEK Application web-based form submission process was opened on June 1, 2014. The “Fidelity (Performance) Bond” information is due to the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) by July 1, 2014. 
 
Please submit the bond information through the SEEK Application Fidelity Bond web-based form submission process, the same as last fiscal year’s submission process.  The following “Bond” website link consists of the Fidelity Bond Web Based Form Submission Instructions, Exposure Calculation Report, and other useful documents and information.
http://education.ky.gov/districts/FinRept/Pages/Bonds.aspx.
 
Fidelity Bond requirements are summarized in KRS 160.560.   The requirements for the penal sum of the bond are summarized in 702 KAR 3:080.  Please refer to the “Exposure Calculation Report” on the “Bonds” website for the Penal Sum amount for your district. The beginning and ending dates of the bond should coincide with the fiscal year beginning and ending dates of July 1, 2014 and June 30, 2015.
 
A hard copy of the bond shall be maintained with the local board of education and electronically submitted through KDE’s SEEK Application web-based system.
 
For questions regarding Fidelity Bonds, please contact Gail Cox at gail.cox@education.ky.gov or via phone at 502-564-3846, extension 4462.

Bond of Depository Submission
This is a reminder as mentioned in the “May/June 2014 Finance Newsletter” the window for submitting the fiscal year 2015 “Bond of Depository” through the SEEK Application web-based form submission process was opened on June 1, 2014. Districts are required to submit their Depository Bond information through the SEEK Application Depository Bond web-based form submission process each year.  The “Bond of Depository” information is due to the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) by July 1, 2014
 
The following “Bond” website link consists of the Bond of Depository Web Based Form Submission Instructions, Bond of Depository Web Form Submission Webcast, Approval Report, and other useful documents and information:
http://education.ky.gov/districts/FinRept/Pages/Bonds.aspx.
 
Bond of Depository requirements are summarized in KRS 160.570.  The requirements for the penal sum of the bond are summarized in 702 KAR 3:090. The Penal Sum must be calculated each year and any adjustments should be made to the Bond of Depository along with the Collateral Market Value.  The beginning and ending dates in the web form will follow the fiscal year on an annual basis and will only allow a one-year span.
 
A hard copy of the bond shall be maintained with the local board of education and electronically submitted through KDE’s SEEK Application web-based system.
 
For questions regarding Bond of Depository, please contact Gail Cox at gail.cox@education.ky.gov or via phone at 502-564-3846, extension 4462.
 
Non-Traditional Instruction Program goes statewide
During the 2014 regular session, the Kentucky General Assembly passed and Gov. Beshear signed into law House Bill 211, which among other things amended 2011 legislation that allowed for what was known as the Snow Bound Pilot.  That legislation gave districts that had missed excessive number of days of school due to weather or other emergencies the opportunity to conduct school through virtual or other non-traditional means on days that the district would have normally had to call off school.  The district would then show evidence of student participation and student learning and would submit a request to Commissioner Holliday for approval.  If approved, the district would not have to make up those days.
 
The primary criteria a district had to meet to submit an application was to have missed an average of 20 school days the previous three years (a total of at least 60 days).  Due to the mild winters in 2011-12 and 2012-13, districts could not apply because they hadn’t missed enough days. However, HB 211 removed the 20-day requirement making all 173 Kentucky school districts eligible to apply to conduct “non-traditional” student attendance days.  The legislation (KRS 158.070, Section 10) now reads:
 
Notwithstanding any other statute, each school term shall include no less than the equivalent of the student instructional year in subsection (1)(d) of this section, except that the commissioner of education may grant up to the equivalent of ten (10) student attendance days for school districts that have an alternative instruction plan approved by the commissioner of education for the use of alternative methods of instruction, including virtual learning, on days when the school district is closed for health or safety reasons, on nontraditional days, or on nontraditional time. The district's plan shall demonstrate how teaching and learning in the district will not be negatively impacted. Average daily attendance for purposes of Support Education Excellence in Kentucky program funding during the student attendance days granted shall be calculated in compliance with administrative regulations promulgated by the Kentucky Board of Education.
 
The timeline for submitting applications to participate in the Non-Traditional Instruction Program for 2014-15 is July 15.  The application and all supporting materials for the Non-Traditional Instruction Program can be found on the Kentucky Department of Education website here. Please contact David Cook or Pat Trotter at (502) 564-4201 if you have questions.

New Guidance for District of Innovation Applications
In previous years, the Kentucky Department of Education has set a specific deadline for applying for District of Innovation status.  Those deadlines were based on the deadline in the administrative regulation (701 KAR 5:140) for Districts of Innovation that required a 180-day lead time for implementation.  In practice, focusing on this deadline meant that districts didn’t realize they could apply at any time prior to the posted deadline.
 
The attached chart should provide more guidance on when applications can be submitted to meet regulatory deadlines.  The purpose is to remind districts that they can apply on any date prior to a specific deadline. 
  
For more information regarding applying for District of Innovation status go to the Districts of Innovation webpage or contact David Cook at 502-564-4201 or via e-mail at david.cook@education.ky.gov.

Guidelines to aid school districts using the Flex Focus transferability options (Attachment)
Attached are guidelines to aid school districts using the Flex Focus transferability options included in HB 235. 
 
If you have any questions regarding these instructions, please contact Karen Wirth at Karen.wirth@education.ky.gov.

Fiscal Year 2015 Comprehensive District Improvement Plan Assurances
The Fiscal Year 2015 Comprehensive District Improvement Plan (CDIP) Assurances will be completed and submitted in ASSIST.  The CDIP Assurances will be in your “New Task List” in ASSIST.  You may print the document to present to your local board for approval.  Upon approval by your local board and after completion of the new task in ASSIST, an e-mail from the Superintendent’s inbox to kdeassurances@education.ky.gov must be submitted by September 30, 2014.  The e-mail should state:
 
As Superintendent of the ___________________school district, I declare that all the schools in our district (including private schools receiving funding from our district) are in compliance with all of the assurances listed in the Assurances document.  These assurances were approved at a regular meeting of the ___________________Board of Education on __________.   The approval is contained in the Board minutes that are available for review at the district’s central office.  All pertinent information related to these assurances is available for review at the district’s central office.”
 
Tutorial videos for completing the assurances in ASSIST are available at http://education.ky.gov/districts/fin/Pages/Comprehensive-District-Improvement-Plan-Funding-and-Finance.aspx. For guidance on submitting your CDIP, please contact Susan Ronca at 502-564-1979, ext.4347 or via e-mail at Susan.Ronca@education.ky.gov.

Fiscal Year 2015 New Forms and Instructions for Federal Cash Requests
KDE is using new forms and instructions for the 2015 Federal Cash Request (FCR) process. Please read through the instructions and review both the FCR Spreadsheet and the Statement of Assurance (SOA). These documents are currently available along with a tutorial video for submitting the FCR SOA at the following website: http://education.ky.gov/districts/fin/Pages/Federal-Grants.aspx. KDE is requesting that you begin using the new FCR spreadsheet beginning July 1, 2014. Please complete all required fields as indicated in the instructions. Understand that ALL FCRs will be held until both the Comprehensive District  Improvement Plans (CDIP) and the Statement of Assurances (SOA) are sent and on file at KDE. Both of these documents are located in the ASSIST system. KDE would like for the SOAs to be submitted no later than September 30, 2014. An electronic copy needs to be e-mailed to fcr.requests@education.ky.gov as well. If e-mailing isn’t an option, you may mail it to the address below. Should there be staff change over, please resubmit a new SOA as soon as possible.  ALL Perkins fund requests will be held until the Perkins Plan is turned into the local CTE Coordinator.
 
For guidance on submitting your CDIP, please contact Susan Ronca at 502-564-1979, ext. 4347 or via e-mail at Susan.Ronca@education.ky.gov.
 
If you need help using the ASSIST system please contact your local ASSIST coordinator or Ginger Kinnard via e-mail at Ginger.Kinnard@education.ky.gov or by phone at 502-564-3791, ext. 4048.
 
If you have a question about submitting your Perkins Plan, please contact Lea Ann Lewis at 502-564-4286, ext. 4239 or via e-mail at Leaann.Lewis@education.ky.gov.
 
If you have questions about the forms or instructions, please contact Ken Greene, Division of Budgets and Financial Management, at 502-564-2351, ext. 4335 or via e-mail at Ken.Greene@eduation.ky.gov.

National Dropout Prevention Network Conference – November 2-5, 2014
The 26th Annual National Dropout Prevention Network Conference will be held November 2nd-5th, 2014 in Louisville, Kentucky.  This year’s theme, ON TRACK FOR SUCCESS:  Each Student College and Career Ready, will challenge conference participants to look for new and effective methods to motivate students in at-risk situations to successfully graduate from high school and be college- and career- ready.  Please see the National Dropout Prevention Network webpage for registration information.

Attention Superintendents: NAEP is Coming!
National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP - Nation’s Report Card) will be implemented for a selected sample of Kentucky Schools for grades 4 and 8 for Math, Reading and Science.

The NAEP 2015 Assessment Window will be January 26 - March 6, 2015. If your school is selected for NAEP 2015, NAEP will schedule a one-day 90-minute session. Only districts and schools selected will receive a NAEP letter with further information.

NAEP is Important because the results are used to compare our Kentucky students with other states in our nation.
 
If your district/schools are selected, a letter during June/July 2014 will be sent out; please help promote the importance of NAEP with your students and let’s show what Kentucky students know and can do!

 
Kentucky Teacher - Differentiated instruction
Kentucky Teacher, the Kentucky Department of Education’s (KDE’s) award-winning online publication, is the place to go to stay abreast of what is happening in Kentucky’s public schools. Kentucky Teacher includes education news, feature articles that highlight successful classroom practice, helpful resources and more.

Here’s a look at what’s coming in Kentucky Teacher the week of June 9:
 
• More than ever before teachers need to focus on individualizing their instruction for their students. Delve into this week’s article on differentiated instruction, and gather some practical tips on making it work in the classroom from teachers who are doing just that.  
 
Make sure you don’t miss anything in Kentucky Teacher by signing up to receive e-mail updates whenever new stories or features are added. Rest assured, we won’t share your e-mail address.
 
We want to hear from you, too, so send your comments, feedback or story suggestions to us at kentuckyteacher@education.ky.gov or post your comments online.
 
Kentucky Teacher is produced by KDE’s Division of Communications.

Items from Outside Agencies
 
PLEASE NOTE: Inclusion of items in this section does not constitute endorsement by the Kentucky Department of Education.
 
My Brother’s Keeper
Earlier this year, President Obama launched the My Brother’s Keeper initiative to address persistent opportunity gaps faced by boys and young men of color and to ensure that all young people can reach their full potential.
 
Through this initiative, the administration is joining with cities and towns, businesses, and foundations who are taking important steps to connect young people to mentoring, support networks, and the skills they need to find a good job or go to college and work their way into the middle class.

The President is calling on Americans interested in getting involved in My Brother’s Keeper to sign up as long-term mentors to young people at WH.gov/mybrotherskeeper.  This effort will engage Americans from all walks of life to sign up to develop sustained and direct mentoring relationships that will play vital roles in the lives of young people.

Secretary of Education Arne Duncan recently sat down with ten Hispanic young men in Denver for an honest conversation, and to discuss My Brother’s Keeper. Read about the visit and watch a video from the conversation.
 

Host families sought for International exchange students
The U.S. Department of State invites you to make a difference by hosting an international high school exchange student in your school or home starting this fall. Approximately 2,000 Department of State-sponsored exchange students from over 50 countries, all of whom have undergone a competitive, merit-based selection process, will spend the 2014-15 academic year in communities across the United States.  These exchange students live with American families, attend American high schools, and participate in American culture, leadership activities, and community service. Exchange students can help internationalize classrooms and bring foreign affairs to life.
 
The State Department seeks host families and host schools from all over the United States. Learn more or submit an interest form at hosting.state.gov and please share this announcement with others. You can also e-mail at youthprograms@state.gov.

Strategies for paraeducators’ academy
Paraeducators' daily work with students is critical in a school’s goal of improving student achievement. The Kentucky Association of School Councils (KASC) has scheduled training on strategies for paraeducators.  The workshop includes:
• Recognizing your strengths and identifying ways to be more effective in the classroom
• The importance of positive relationships for working with students
• Strategies for building positive relationships and improving student achievement
• Specific instructional strategies to use with students
• Collaboration and communication with teachers
 
To register to attend this workshop, click here.