June 1, 2010
The Honorable Diane DeBacker
Commissioner of Education
Kansas State Department of Education
120 SE 10th Avenue
Topeka, Kansas 66612-1182
Dear Commissioner DeBacker:
I am writing in response to Kansas's request to amend its state accountability plan under Title I of the Elementary Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended (ESEA). Following discussions between the Department and your staff, you made a change to Kansas's accountability plan, which is now included in the amended plan that Kansas submitted to the Department on January 6, 2010. I am pleased to approve Kansas's amended plan, which we will post on the Department1s website. A summary of Kansas's requested amendment is enclosed with this letter. As you know, any further requests to amend Kansas's accountability plan must be submitted to the Department for review and approval as required by section 1111(f)(2) of Title I of the ESEA.
Please also be aware that approval of Kansas's accountability plan for Title I, including the amendment approved herein, does not indicate that the plan complies with Federal civil rights requirements, including Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, and requirements under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.
I am confident that Kansas will continue to advance its efforts to hold schools and school districts accountable for the achievement of all students. If you need any additional assistance to implement the standards, assessment, and accountability provisions of the ESEA, please do not hesitate to contact (Vicki Robinson@ed.gov) or (Clayton.Hollingshead@ed.gov) of my staff.
Thelma Melendez de Santa Ana, Ph.D.
cc: Governor Mark Parkinson
Amendment to Kansas's Accountability Plan
The following is a summary of Kansas's amendment request. Please refer to the Department's website (www.ed.gov/admins/lead/account/stateplans03/index.html)for Kansas' complete accountability plan.
Including all required student subgroups in adequate yearly progress (AYP) definition, including major racial and ethnic groups (Element 5.1
Revision: Kansas will use the following major racial and ethnic subgroups for data collection and the calculation of AYP: Hispanic/Latino, White, Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, Black or African American, Asian, American Indian or Alaska Native, and Multi-Racial. To calculate "safe harbor," if a school or district has a student group for which "safe harbor" applies and there was no such student group in the prior year, Kansas will use whatever number of students in the previous year that were i the subgroup even if it was less than 30. If, as a result with its AYP determination, it may file an appeal and provide supporting data. The type of appeal is only applicable to the 2010 AYP determinations and will be determined on a case-by-case basis.