Correspondence for Charter Schools
Aug. 3, 2023Posted by Business Center on 8/3/2023
- Additional Days School Year
Additional Days School Year (ADSY) adds half-day formula funding for school systems that add instructional days to any of their elementary schools (Texas Education Code (TEC), §48.0051). Districts will generate half-day funding for each instructional day after their 180th instructional day, up to their 210th instructional day.
ADSY funding is available at the campus level and programs can utilize anywhere from one to 30 additional days with design flexibility as long as it meets eligibility requirements. The list of requirements can be found within the TAA letter.
TEA is requesting that all LEAs who anticipate utilizing ADSY funding in 2023-2024 complete the ADSY 2023-2024 Implementation Survey by August 25, 2023.
This survey includes the submission of a school calendar with evidence of a 180-day instructional calendar, which will be used to verify eligibility compliance and serve as required evidence for any ADSY waivers in the 2023-2024 school year, as well as helping to identify projected ADSY implementation trends to better inform ADSY supports.
Beginning in the 2023–2024 school year, participating campuses are eligible for up to five days of ADSY waivers for missed instructional days throughout the year due to weather, health, or safety reasons. These waiver days are for the purpose of ensuring compliance with the 180 days of instruction requirement and are distinct from the Missed School Day waiver. The list of waiver requirements can be found within the TAA letter.
- Dyslexia Support Updates
During the 88th Texas Legislature (Regular Session), House Bill 3928 was passed and impacts dyslexia evaluation, identification, and instruction. TEA is working to update all impacted technical assistance resources and webpages since the changes are in effect beginning with the 2023-2024 school year.
The State Board of Education's (SBOE’s) proposed timeline for its required changes will be communicated as that timeline is determined and communicated to TEA. While the SBOE completes its rulemaking process to update the Dyslexia Handbook, it is critical that LEAs comply with the requirements of HB 3928 and use the HB 3928 FAQ document for assistance with implementation.
Be aware that there might be additional funding and expenditure requirements with an increased service for dyslexia related student instruction. Currently, the spending requirement is 100% of the assigned PIC in the Summary of Finance.
July 18, 2023Posted by Business Center on 7/18/2023
2023-2024 FY Tax Rate and MCR Template Tool
Due to timing of legislative decisions (specifically, Senate Bill (SB) 2, 88th Texas Legislature, Second Called Session), the official Local Property Value Survey (LPVS) application will calculate MCRs under Regular session (88th R) law only. The information below also assumes SB 2 (88th SS #2) will be signed by the Governor, enacted, and then approved by voters in November. If voters approve the increased homestead exemption, the state certified "T2" values will reflect the $100,000 exemption and will be incorporated into the Summary of Finances (SOF) reports in February 2024.
TY 2023 State MCR: 0.8941 × (1.025 ÷ 1.0443) - 0.0825 = $0.7950 - $0.1070 = $0.6880
If SB 2 (88th SS #2) is signed by the Governor and is enacted, Tier One MCRs for TY 2023 will range from $0.6880 (max) to $0.6192 (90% floor). As a result, the maximum M&O rate for the 2023 tax year would be $0.8580 ($0.6880 + $0.17).
Local MCR determinations for tax year 2023 will be calculated in 2 steps
Initially, the LPVS will calculate MCRs under regular session law only (88th R). However, TEA will then make additional calculations prior to publishing the Preliminary MCRs to incorporate the additional tax reduction per SB 2 (88th SS #2). These additional calculations from SB 2 (88th SS #2) will not require an action by the ISD (unless the ISD is appealing the MCR), as TEA will automatically calculate them as noted below:
- Districts submit LVPS using HB 1 (88th R) law prior to August 1.
- After initial LPVS survey submission, TEA will calculate and make available the preliminary maximum compressed tier one tax rates to each school district on or before August 5.
- If TEA does not receive an appeal of a preliminary MCR, the preliminary MCR as determined by TEA automatically becomes a final MCR.
- If TEA receives an appeal of a preliminary MCR, TEA will issue a final determination to the school district no later than August 31.
LPVS Submission Process
The LPVS for the 2023-2024 school year opens for data submission today, Tuesday, July 18, 2023, and will close at midnight on Tuesday, August 1, 2023. Please ensure that your district completes and submits the LPVS using the online FSP System by Tuesday, August 1, 2023.
For purposes of the LPVS submission, districts should enter local district taxable property values (and calculated estimates of district comptroller property values, or “T2” values) for TY 2023 reflecting the $40,000 state homestead exemption (HSE) under current HB 1 (88th R) law.
As a note, the MCR that will be shown in the local property value survey in TEAL will not correctly reflect your district’s final MCR, as determined under Senate Bill 2 (88th SS #2), since TEA will adjust the LPVS prior to issuing preliminary MCRs. Districts that do not submit their LPVS will receive the lesser of the prior year MCR, or the assumed State compression rate of $0.6880 as their MCR.
Tax Rate Adoption
Districts should wait to proceed with tax rate adoption until the TEA publishes preliminary MCRs on or before August 5th. If an appeal is requested, then districts should wait to receive from TEA a final MCR determination before proceeding with tax rate adoption.
As a reminder, a lower MCR does not impact your district’s total FSP entitlement, but rather shifts funding between the state and local share, as Tier One tax compression does not impact the overall level of funding a district is entitled to. Rather, tax compression only impacts the balance of the state and local share of a school district’s total Tier One entitlement.
MCR Template from TEA
For additional assistance, TEA has posted a new Tax Rate and MCR Template on their TEA State Funding Webpage, under the District & Charter Planning Tools subheading. Please note that the purpose of this template is limited to assistance only and does not anticipate any tax rate increase that the district may be considering, nor is it an official submission of the LPVS. Legal responsibility to adopt a tax rate in accordance with the law remains with the district, which should consult with its own legal counsel.
For more information on submitting the LPVS through the FSP System, including information on applying for specific roles in the system, please see the TEA FSP System web page. For help with accessing the FSP system or submitting the 2023–2024 LPVS, please contact Namrata Parikh by phone at (512) 463-6220 or email email@example.com.
June 30, 2023Posted by Business Center on 6/30/2023
- Preliminary 2023-2024 Summary of Finance (SOF) Data
The initial 2023–2024 preliminary Summary of Finances (SOF) reports are published in SOF Run ID 40797 and incorporate, but are not limited to the following:
- Increased tier two golden penny yield from $98.56 to $126.21.
- Preliminary ASF rate of $414.884.
- ADA and FTEs – attendance projections as adopted in the 88th GAA, HB 1, Article III, Rider 3.
- For charter schools, the SOF reports will be updated prior to the first September payment to reflect charter estimates from the FSP system.
The 2023–2024 preliminary Summary of Finances (SOF) reports do NOT yet include:
- HB 3 (88-R) changes to school safety allotment (increase from $9.72 to $10 per ADA, plus $15,000 per campus).
- HB 3705 (88-R) to provide $1,500 per non-enrolled student for UIL activities.
- Pending Legislation from 88th called special sessions.
Periodic updates to the preliminary 2023–2024 SOF reports will occur until the first payment is made in September 2023. Additional updates might also be needed throughout the school year depending on the complexity/timelines/outcomes of pending legislation in the 88th Texas Legislature called special sessions.
Please contact TEA’s School Finance Division at firstname.lastname@example.org with any additional questions.
- Survey on Real Property
TEA is conducting a short survey of local educational agencies (LEAs) to identify those LEAs that purchased real property with federal funds under grant federal programs administered by TEA prior to the 2022–2023 grant year. Note that this purchase may have occurred several years ago, since the completion of the previous Survey on Real Property Reporting back in October 2019.
All LEAs need to complete the survey on real property, regardless if you have purchased eligible property or not, by July 21, 2023.
The Federal Fiscal Compliance and Reporting (FFCR) Division will send targeted emails to LEAs that do not complete the survey and provide an extended deadline for them, if needed.
- ESSER Supplemental
TEA has calculated and posted final allocations for the 2021–2023 ESSER Supplemental (ESSER-SUPP) Federal Grant Application on the TEA entitlements webpage under the “COVID-19 Funding” heading.
When Federal Fiscal Compliance and Reporting (FFCR) Division staff replaced projected 2022–2023 enrollment with actual 2022–2023 enrollment, it impacted the ESSER-SUPP allocations for every LEA. If an LEA’s actual 2022–2023 enrollment was lower than the enrollment projection used in the April 2022 ESSER-SUPP calculation, even if the LEA experienced an increase in enrollment in 2022–2023 compared to 2021–2022, the LEA’s ESSER-SUPP allocation decreased.
The 25% hold on LEA's NOGAs has been removed, and as a result, LEA's can now draw down their remaining funds, including expenditures during the grant period.
No action is required by the grantee at this time, as TEA staff have already initiated and completed budget adjustments to incorporate the revised amounts. If necessary, an LEA may submit an amendment to revise the budget entered by TEA staff with a revised deadline of July 28, 2023.
As a reminder, ESSER Supplemental grant funds must be obligated by August 31, 2023, which is the end of the grant period.
- ESSER II
Upcoming deadlines for ESSER II are as follows:
- July 7, 2023 – Final Amendment due date.
- September 30, 2023 – End of grant period for ESSER II.
Please remember to fully expense your ESSER II funds (down to the penny) as applicable, otherwise you might be subject to have partial ESSER III funds be allocated for ESSER II by TEA’s grant staff.
- ESSER Annual Reporting
For the Year 4 Reporting, USDE has required an additional 26 data elements for ESSER I, II, and III.
LEAs will still be required to report expenditures in the standard expenditure categories, but will now also be required to report the same expenditures for the additional 26 data elements as well. A new printable workbook will be released in Early Summer for all LEAs to utilize, as the workbook will break down the new data elements for better understanding.
June 16, 2023Posted by Business Center on 6/16/2023
Below are 7 important updates to funding, initiatives, and upcoming training opportunities that have been recently released. As always, if you have any questions, please reach out to me for assistance.
- Adjustments to the FY 2023-2024 and 2024-2025 FSP Payments
In support of the legislative process, the LBB requested that the TEA provide supplementary analysis to put LEAs’ attendance projections in context, and alternative methodological options for consideration by legislative decision makers. These figures are lower than LEA projections by 15,923 (0.3%) in FY 2024 and by 54,624 (1%) in FY 2025.
To operationalize the adopted LPE:
- If an LEA’s projection was at or below the alternative projection, the LEA’s projection was accepted.
- If an LEA’s projection was above the alternative projection, the LEA’s projection was reduced by a percentage, but no LEA was reduced below TEA’s October projection.
- For 2023–2024, up to a 0.3% reduction was applied to LEAs with ADA up to 1,600, and reductions up to 0.52% for LEAs above 1,600 ADA.
- For 2024–2025, up to a 1% reduction for LEAs with ADA up to 1,600, and reductions up to 1.78% for LEAs above 1,600 ADA.
The adopted projections by LEA can be found here: https://tea.texas.gov/finance-and-grants/state-funding/additional-finance-resources/attendance-projections.
Note: Only refined ADA was revised for certain districts as noted above. All other student counts (SPED, Bilingual, G/T, etc.) that were submitted by LEAs and accepted by the TEA through the Attendance Projections module in the FSP system and submitted to LBB did not change.
Remember, LEAs are made whole during settle-up. If projections are too high, more funding flows during the school year, but must be returned to the state later. If the projections are too low, less funding flows during the school year, and will be made whole in the settle-up process. Whether projections are too low or too high, the final entitlement is the same, based on actual attendance. The only difference is when the funding flows.
Revised projections for school years 2023-2024 and 2024-2025 are not the basis of LPE payments to open enrollment charter schools. FSP payments will continue to be based on attendance submitted in the Charter Schools module of the FSP application.
More information can be found in the TAA letter sent out on June 15th.
- Upcoming Survey Deadlines
The 2022-2023 Transportation Route Services Report
- TEA requests your school district to promptly complete and submit this report to enable TEA’s process in finalizing the 2022-2023 Transportation Allotment amount.
- The annual deadline for submitting the 2022-2023 Transportation Route Services Report is August 1, 2023.
- Additional information can be found on the School Transportation Funding webpage, as well as in the School Transportation Allotment Handbook.
- Cyber Security Initiative, Funding, and IT Guidance
It is the intent of the Legislature that the Texas Education Agency enter into an interagency agreement with the Department of Information Resources (DIR) to provide cybersecurity services for LEAs in accordance with DIR Strategy C.1.2, Security Services. Cybersecurity services to be provided by DIR may include, but are not limited to, cybersecurity assessments, end point detection response, and network detection response.
The purpose of this initiative is to provide immediate solutions to protect LEAs from major cyber incidents, such as ransomware. Priority will be given to rural LEAs, and cybersecurity practitioners will be available at your regional education service center to assist with implementation of cybersecurity controls that fall within scope of this initiative.
The following cybersecurity controls are highly encouraged for all LEAs to implement between September 1, 2023 and August 31, 2025 and fall within the scope of this initiative:
- Implement fully managed Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) on LEA servers and applicable staff devices. TEA will fully fund licenses with limited distribution. See details below.
- Implement Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) on staff email systems. More details to come.
- Implement email protocol security configurations. More details to come.
- Restrict local admin access. More details to come.
The following cybersecurity controls are funded on a first come first served basis by TEA through DIR’s Shared Technology Services (STS) program and are recommended to mature LEA cybersecurity posture. These controls fall within scope of this initiative:
- Complete a third party K-12 Cybersecurity Assessment to get a baseline of your cybersecurity maturity and action plan for improving cybersecurity posture. Application to open in September.
- Implement Network Detection and Response (NDR), especially for schools with cameras and other Internet of Things (IoT) devices. Application to open in September.
LEAs will need to sign DIR’s inter-local agreement to receive the in scope services from DIR’s Shared Technology Services (STS), Managed Security Services (MSS) program.
- TEA’s goal is to have all eligible LEAs onboarded with a signed inter-local agreement by September 1, 2023, so the services can be distributed as soon as possible.
- After the inter-local agreement is in place, eligible LEAs may then request in scope services through the STS program, which will be paid for by TEA starting September 1, 2023 through August 31, 2025.
- The MSS vendor, AT&T, or your regional education service center may reach out to your LEA to help facilitate this process.
- Details about this process were discussed in the April Cybersecurity Coordinator call, and a recording can be accessed here, which includes additional resources with instructions and scope: https://tea.texas.gov/academics/learning-support-and-programs/technology-planning/k-12-cybersecurity-initiative.
- You may register for the Cybersecurity Coordinator Forum series, with the next one next scheduled on June 28th @ 11am CDT, at this URL using your LEA email address: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/8234183618339320587.
TEA’s distribution of Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) services through DIR’s Managed Security Services (MSS) will be to provide a scope that they can reasonably accommodate with the funding provided. Therefore, TEA will limit the distribution for LEAs with a total enrollment of 15,000 and below.
- The EDR provided, which replaces traditional anti-virus software and incorporates threat intelligence along with malicious behavior characteristics on endpoints, will be fully managed to eliminate additional LEA overhead and is one of the best solutions to prevent ransomware and secure devices.
- The current vendors under the MSS contract for EDR are CrowdStrike and SentinelOne.
- TEA will provide a range from 30 licenses up to licenses equal to 10% of student enrollment, whichever is larger.
- It is TEA’s intent to focus on high-risk and impact devices, so initial distribution should focus on servers and central office staff with any remaining licenses distributed to other staff devices that have access to sensitive data.
Finally, all LEAs will be signed up with the Dorkbot web application vulnerability notification service. Dorkbot is an automated system run by the University of Texas – Austin, that uses publicly available information to identify vulnerable public facing systems on K-12 networks.
- Currently designated cybersecurity coordinators for each LEA will be the point of contact for any findings the service uncovers, so please ensure those designations are up to date in AskTED. Please reach out to your district AskTED coordinator or email email@example.com if you need assistance with updating AskTED.
- The Dorkbot service for LEAs will begin July 1, 2023.
- More information about the Dorkbot service can be found at: https://security.utexas.edu/dorkbot.
- 2023–2024 Indirect Cost Rates
The Federal Fiscal Compliance and Reporting (FFCR) Division has published indirect cost rates for independent school districts and open-enrollment charter schools. These rates are effective July 1, 2023, through June 30, 2024.
You may find your indirect cost rates in either of two places:
- The Indirect Cost Rates page of the TEA website lists 2023–2024 indirect cost rates for all independent school districts and open-enrollment charter schools.
- The GFFC Reports and Data Collections secure TEAL application includes a 2023–2024 Indirect Cost Rate Notification Letter for each independent school district and open-enrollment charter school.
If you have questions about the issuance of indirect cost rates, please email the Federal Fiscal Compliance and Reporting Division at Compliance@tea.texas.gov.
- School Safety Funding
2023-2025 School Safety Standards Formulary Grant
- On November 3, 2022, TEA released a formula-based grant to support the school safety standards rule referenced above. The grant allows for pre-award for items purchased on or after June 1, 2022.
- Application due date is August 1, 2023.
- Grant details are available on the TEA Grant Opportunities page.
- The Texas Legislature has provided new funding for school safety totaling $1.4 billion for the next two years, including $1.1 billion in one-time funding through the supplemental appropriations bill to address new minimum school safety standards and other facilities-related safety improvements.
- TEA will provide more information on accessing this funding in the coming months.
- Accelerated Instruction from HB 1416
House Bill 1416 updated accelerated instruction requirements from House Bill 4545 (from 87th Legislature), which could have financial impacts to your local budget.
The following supports are available for LEA personnel supporting HB 1416 implementation:
- HB 1416 Webinar: TEA is hosting a webinar to provide an overview of HB 1416, review changes from HB 4545, and to walk through available supports for HB 1416 implementation on Thursday, July 13th from 10am CT to 11am CT. Interested attendees can register here.
- Accelerated Instruction Webpage: TEA will provide accelerated instruction supports – including frequently asked questions and example resources from LEAs - on the TEA Accelerated Instruction webpage. Additional resources will be added as developed.
- Direct Support: LEA personnel may reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or to provide resources which may be hosted on the TEA accelerated instruction webpage as a resource for other LEAs.
Additional information about the changes can be found on the TAA letter sent out on June 15th.
- Upcoming Training Opportunity
We are excited to share that our partners at the Region One ESC Division of Business & Operations will be hosting their first School Finance & Operations Conference at South Padre Island, TX, July 27-28, 2023. School System teams of professionals in the areas of Business, Finance, Operations, Maintenance, Human Resources and Technology will be attending to prepare for the 2023-2024 School Year and beyond. They will also offer a Pre-Conference SOF Template session presented by Omar Garcia on July 26 at no additional cost.
You can visit their conference website, https://sites.google.com/esc1.net/schoolfinance/home, for agendas, registration, and hotel accommodations.
For questions or more information, please contact the Region One ESC Division of Business & Operations team at 956-984-6284 or email email@example.com.
August 7, 2022Posted by Business Center on 8/8/2022
Charter 2022-2023 Template
- TEA has released the 2022-2023 Charter Estimate of State Aid Template for you to estimate funding based on updated student data, as needed for budget purposes during the year.
School FIRST Rating – Preliminary
- Your charter school’s preliminary 2021–2022 Charter Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas (FIRST) rating is based on an analysis of the charter school’s financial data for the fiscal year 2021 (the fiscal period ended June 30, 2021, or August 31, 2021, depending on the ending date of your charter school’s fiscal year) and is now available online.
To access your charter school’s Charter FIRST rating:
- access the Texas Education Agency (TEA) website by using this link https://tea.texas.gov/;
- click the Finance and Grants webpage tab link https://tea.texas.gov/finance-and-grants;
- click the Financial Compliance link https://tea.texas.gov/finance-and-grants/financial-compliance;
- click the Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas link;
- click the Charter FIRST Rating link for Open-Enrollment Charter Schools and Charter Schools Operated by a Public Institution of Higher Education; and
- click the 2011—2012 and newer Charter School - Financial Accountability (Select Year from Dropdown) Ratings link.
If your charter school wishes to appeal an adverse issue it identifies in the preliminary rating; your charter school may submit a written appeal with supporting evidence to the TEA Financial Compliance Division. For the appeal to be considered, TEA must receive it by September 6, 2022. Send your appeal and supporting documentation to the following email address: FinancialAccountability@tea.texas.gov. TEA will issue final ratings to charter schools after they have reviewed any submitted appeals.
Final 2021–2022 Charter FIRST ratings are anticipated to be released in November 2022. After final ratings are released:
- Within two months of the release of your charter school's final Charter FIRST rating, your charter school must announce and hold a public meeting to distribute a financial management report that explains the charter school’s rating and its performance under each indicator for the current and previous year’s ratings.
- The report also must provide the financial information described in 19 TAC §109.1001(q)(3). TEA encourages your charter school to include in the report additional information that will be beneficial to stakeholders, especially information explaining any special circumstances that may have affected the charter school’s performance under one or more of the indicators.
- The required newspaper notice, to inform taxpayers of the meeting, must be published no more than 30 days and no fewer than 10 days before the public meeting. Your charter school may combine the meeting with a scheduled regular meeting of your charter school’s governing board.
- For full requirements related to the report and meeting, see 19 TAC §109.1001(q).
- For a template that your charter school can use in developing its financial management report, see the TEA Charter FIRST web page.
If you have questions about your charter school’s Charter FIRST rating, please contact Roger Seemion at (512) 463-3712 or by email at Roger.Seemion@tea.texas.gov. You can also view additional information in the TAA letter about this subject.
Final 2022 College, Career, and Military Readiness (CCMR) Student Listing
Column L (EB/EL Status) of the Final 2022 CCMR Student Listing was updated on Monday, August 1, 2022. Emergent bilingual students/English learners who were year five in U.S. schools were incorrectly reported as M (monitored). The updated listing removed the M (monitored) label from these students.
Additional information can be found on the Performance Reporting Page, or by using the College, Career, and Military Readiness Tracker in TEAL. If you have any other questions, please contact the Performance Reporting Division at (512) 463-9704 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Revised Planning Amounts are available for the 2022–2023 Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Consolidated Federal Grant Application
Local Educational Agency (LEA) revised planning amounts for ESSA formula grant programs are now available and can be viewed on the Entitlements webpage. Revised planning amounts are based on the US Department of Education July Grant Award Notifications and replace previously posted planning amounts which were based on the federal budget tables.
Note: The 2022–2023 Special Education Consolidated Grant Application (Federal) and the 2022–2023 Perkins V: Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century planning amounts have not changed.