MARSS Manual Updates
**Note that MDE has been posting updated MARSS coding instruction. The Data Elements have been posted and the procedures and appendices are updates as possible. Always refer to these updates as your first resource when researching questions. Also, there are many “new” guidelines that have been included which may change how you have accustomed to reporting these components in the past.**
Effective FY 2018, uniform statewide evaluations will be used to screen students for EL. This will allow MARSS to edit the EL indicator more thoroughly. Specifically:
• Students who scored non-proficient on the prior year’s ACCESS must be flagged as an EL student in the current year, even if the students are enrolled in a different school or district than the prior year and even if the new school does not have an EL program. Students flagged as EL but who are not served in the current year in an EL program would not have an EL Start Date.
• Students reported as EL in the prior school year and who did not have a valid ACCESS composite score the prior school year must be flagged as EL in the current year, even if the students are enrolled in a different school or district than the prior year and even if the new school does not have an EL program. Students flagged as EL but who are not served in the current year in an EL program would not have an EL Start Date.
• Effective FY 2019, students who scored proficient on the prior year’s ACCESS and all domains scored above 3.5 are reported as EL “N” and no EL Start Date. They are ineligible for state EL funding.
• Students who scored proficient on the prior year’s ACCESS but one or more domains scored 3.5 or less may or may not be reported as EL. Local program evaluations will make this determination.
English Learner Start Date
Effective FY 2019, students who scored proficient on the prior year’s ACCESS and all domains scored above 3.5 are reported as EL “N” and no EL Start Date. They are ineligible for state EL funding.
The district/charter school should have a procedure in determining the appropriate gender to report for a student on whose behalf you have been given conflicting information.
Homeless Student Flag
Minnesota Statutes, section 120A.20: Subd. 2 Education and residence, and transportation of homeless. (a) Notwithstanding subdivision 1, a district must not deny free admission to a homeless pupil solely because the district cannot determine that the pupil is a resident of the district.
Beginning in school year 2016-17, once the student has been identified as homeless, a new enrollment record needs to be created with Homeless Flag = “Y”. The start date should be the initial night of homelessness. The end date can be the last date the student was known to be homeless or the end of the school year. Either way is acceptable; however, a warning message will be generated indicating an earlier record exists in which the student is reported as homeless when a new enrollment record is generated when the student moves into established housing. This warning message can be ignored in this case.
The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (McKinney-Vento Act) was amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) on December 10, 2015. One of the key provisions is that “children awaiting foster care” was removed from the definition of “homeless children and youths.” Under this provision, schools cannot use McKinney-Vento funds to serve children and youth who are in and awaiting foster care. Districts will no longer be able to access state special education funds that have been available to cover the additional costs of transporting students awaiting foster care to their school of origin. This affects students initially placed for foster care on or after December 10, 2016.Title I.
Students experiencing homelessness are eligible to receive Title I services. Report the homeless student as a Title I participant if the student is enrolled in a Title I school (i.e., Title I School Indicator is one of B, C, D, or E). If not enrolled in a Title I school, homeless students are entitled to comparable Title I services but there is no MARSS indicator for this situation.
A district’s/charter school’s Homeless Liaison must provide certification to the MARSS Coordinators to ensure that the student is reported as homeless. The documentation may be provided as a spreadsheet or as a typical form. Whatever the process, the document needs to be signed by the Homeless Liaison. The date that the student is determined to be homeless is based on when the homeless situation occurred. Not when the Homeless Liaison first learned or met with the family.