Part of our mission is to keep schools up to date on the latest noteworthy news in the education technology space. Below are three important items that we think everyone should read about.

Modernizing the E-Rate Program

For over 20 years, the E-Rate program has successfully provided the funding necessary for schools and libraries to bring wired and wireless connectivity to learning spaces. In 2014, the FCC started a five year test to split their funding into two categories. Category One funds data transmission services and/or internet connectivity. Category Two funds internal connections like computer hardware and other services related to internet connectivity like WiFi. There has been much speculation as to what will happen to the Category 2 program after FY19-20 which is the last year in that five-year test. Early last month, the FCC recommended making the two-category model permanent.

Click here to read more about this recent recommendation and how the E-Rate program has impacted schools and libraries across the country.

Cyber Security Awareness for Your School

Have you heard about some of the recent cyber security attacks on schools? The state of Louisiana called a state of emergency after a wave of ransomware attacks targeted Louisiana school districts. To help you stay ahead of hackers, we recently published an article outlining key areas you can focus on to mitigate risk. Click here to read more.

Top 5 Pupil Accounting Changes for the 2019/2020 School Year

If you missed this Spring’s Michigan Pupil Accounting & Attendance Association (MPAAA) Conference, we’ve got you covered. Here are 5 important reporting changes that will affect your district.

1) Criteria for the Section 35a reporting

MDE has finalized the requirements for what to report and how to report it for those students with reading deficiencies. Click here for more details.

2) TSDL SCED Codes are changing for the 19-20 school year

All courses that have been previously coded to be submitted in this collection will need to be updated. This is not something that your SIS will do automatically. Click here for a full outline.

3) TSDL Shared Time program criteria

According to new rules you may have more students who need to be reported. The updated criteria includes many elementary students and home-school students that do not even attend that district. Click here for more details.

4) English Learner Exit Process has changed

Often these students are exited in the EOY collection. Exit data will not be released until July, meaning it will not be accessible before the end of the year. This information will need to be updated through an SRM once available.

5) Mentor Teachers are now a classification

In previous years it may have been difficult to classify Mentor Teachers in the REP as a specific designation did not exist. Per the update, instead of figuring out what “box” to classify your Mentor Teachers in, they now have their own classification.

Don’t miss out on next year’s conferences! Mark your calendars now for both the Spring and Fall conferences, where the MPAAA experts promote best practices and provide training related to data management and attendance accountability. Become an MPAAA member and check out their events calendar here.