Under No Child Left Behind, low–income students in schools designated “in need of improvement” for at least two years may be eligible to receive free tutoring or other academic enrichment services. This extra help is referred to as supplemental educational services (SES).
In order to help states, school districts and schools better implement the SES provisions of No Child Left Behind, the U.S. Department of Education has issued guidance that further clarifies the roles of states and districts. It also features ideas for connecting parents to supplemental educational service providers, who offer free tutoring and other academic enrichment activities to students. This guidance addresses questions that are primarily based on issues raised by state and local school officials and staff, education leaders, technical assistance providers, parents, parent advocacy organizations, parental involvement coordinators/liaisons, and others who are actively engaged in working with parents to improve student achievement and learning.
The guidance provides new information, as well as clarifications and modifications to previously included topics. For instance new information clarifies the steps that states and districts must take when a district is identified as “in need of improvement” and can no longer be a service provider. And revised language makes clear that SES providers can hire some teachers, even if they work in a school or school district that is in need of improvement.
The updated guidance also includes a “model” parent letter, which was added to help districts inform parents of the opportunity to enroll their children in free tutoring services.
New information also was added about the use of incentives by providers, how a school district can fairly select providers to work in school buildings, and how school districts must spend the full 20 percent of an amount equal to their federal Title I, Part A funding on supplemental educational services and school choice if the demand exists.
This updated guidance is available online.
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