American Indian Education Oversight CommitteeDate: November 25, 2012
To: Tom Torlakson, State Superintendent of Public Instruction
From: Laura Lee George, Chair, American Indian Education Oversight Committee
RE: American Indian Education Centers – Withdrawal from Maximum Flexibility
CC: Craig Cheslog, Judy Delgado
On July 18, 201,2 and again on November 25, 2012, the American Indian Education Oversight Committee (AIEOC) voted that I send you advisories strongly supporting the withdrawal of the American Indian Education Centers from maximum flexibility.
Unlike school districts, the American Indian Education Centers receive only one (or sometimes two) State categorical funding streams for which “maximum flexibility” is pure nonsense. The benefits from being included in “maximum flexibility” work against the accountability standards outlined in the American Indian Centers authorizing legislation and the Education Code.
The AIEOC is also being hampered from its duties to provide oversight on the American Indian Centers. The AIEOC is prevented from asking for information, even on a voluntary basis, from the Centers. We do know that three Centers owe refunds to the State for 2005-06, but there are no sanctions and they remain eligible to continue to receive funding under the “maximum flexibility” regulations.
The AIEOC is further hampered in collecting student outcome data on the successes and challenges of the Centers. With the AIEOC’s upcoming duty to produce a yearly report, the report again will ring “hollow” of any statistics and data on student outcomes due to restrictions from Centers being in “maximum flexibility.” This in turn hinders any efforts to improve education in California for its American Indian students.
Recommendation: The AIEOC strongly recommends that the State Superintendent of Public Instruction advocate for the removal of the American Education Centers from maximum flexibility.