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Countywide Plans Letter

Letter Head: Jack O'Connell, State Superintendent of Public Instruction, California Department of Education

January 21, 2015

Dear County and District Superintendents and Charter School Administrators:

2015 COUNTYWIDE PLANS FOR PROVISION OF EDUCATIONAL SERVICES TO EXPELLED STUDENTS

California Education Code (EC) Section 48926 initially required county superintendents, in conjunction with superintendents of the school districts within the county, to develop a plan for providing educational services to all expelled pupils in that county. The plan was to be adopted by the governing board of each school district within the county and by the county board of education, and submitted to the State Superintendent of Public Instruction (SSPI) in 1997. EC Section 48926 also requires that each county superintendent of schools, in conjunction with district superintendents in the county, submit a triennial update to that plan to the SSPI.

The next triennial updates to the Countywide Plans for Provision of Educational Services to Expelled Students are due no later than June 30, 2015.

EC Section 48926 provides specifically that:

The plan shall enumerate existing educational alternatives for expelled pupils, identify gaps in educational services to expelled pupils, and strategies for filling those service gaps. The plan shall also identify alternative placements for pupils who are expelled and placed in district community day school programs, but who fail to meet the terms and conditions of their rehabilitation plan or who pose a danger to other district pupils, as determined by the governing board.

In 2012, the recommended content of the Countywide Plan was amended to address additional, more detailed questions that were raised and supported by the State School Attendance Review Board and the Student Programs and Services Steering Committee of the California County Superintendents Educational Services Association. These questions concern behavioral intervention approaches used to minimize the number of suspensions and expulsions, including a focus on how such practices may impact any disproportionate number of minority students being suspended or expelled.

The Countywide Plan requirements and recommendations are described below:

  1. The Countywide Plan must list and describe the educational alternatives currently available for expelled students. It is recommended that the plan also describe strategies for improvement during the next three years, including:
    • Any behavioral intervention practices, at the site and district levels, and options used to:
      • Minimize the number of suspensions leading to expulsions
      • Minimize the number of expulsions being ordered
      • Support students returning from expulsions
      • Specific explanation of how those practices relate to any disproportionate representation of minority students in such interventions. For assistance in this area, you may review recent guidance issued by the U.S. Departments of Education and Justice located at http://www2.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/school-discipline/index.html.

  2. The Countywide Plan must address gaps in educational services and strategies for filling them. If a 2012 Countywide Plan identified gaps in educational services to expelled pupils, it is recommended the 2015 plan include the following information regarding the implementation of strategies outlined for filling those service gaps:
    • Were the strategies successful or not? Please explain why and how they were or were not successful.
    • Were any additional strategies implemented? If so, explain why and how they were or were not successful.
    • For strategies that were not successful, describe any additional measure(s) or approach(es) taken, and the outcome(s).

  3. Identify alternative placements for pupils who are expelled and placed in district community day school programs, but who fail to meet the terms and conditions of their rehabilitation plan or pose a danger to other district pupils, as determined by the governing board.

In addition, under the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), county offices of education are required to adopt a Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP) for county operated schools and programs which includes goals, actions, and expected measurable outcomes in 10 state priority areas, for all pupils and subgroups of pupils identified in EC Section 52052. Included among the priorities, a county office LCAP must address how it will coordinate the instruction of expelled students under EC Section 48926. Thus, the Countywide Plans will contribute to the information presented in the LCAP and provide a regional perspective on meeting the needs of expelled pupils.

Please submit both a hard copy and an electronic version of the 2015 Countywide Plan no later than June 30, 2015. Submit the hard copy of the plan to: 

Dan Sackheim, Education Programs Consultant
Educational Options, Student Support, and American Indian Education Office
California Department of Education
1430 N Street, Suite 6408
Sacramento, CA 95814-5901

To submit the electronic version of the Countywide Plan, post the plan onto your county’s Web site. Then provide the Web address to ToShawne Williams, Associate Governmental Programs Analyst, Educational Options, Student Support, and American Indian Education Office, by e-mail at ToWilliams@cde.ca.gov.

The California Department of Education (CDE) will establish an outside link on the Countywide Plans for Expelled Students Web page to each of the county plans. The CDE Countywide Plans for Expelled Students Web page can be viewed at http://www.cde.ca.gov/sp/eo/ex/index.asp.

If you have any questions regarding the electronic version of the Countywide Plans, please contact ToShawne Williams, by phone at 916-319-0507.

Please maintain the links to both the 2012 and 2015 Countywide Plans on your county’s Web site. The purpose of the availability of both plans posted on the CDE Countywide Plans for Expelled Students Web page is to show each county’s progress in providing educational services to all expelled pupils.

If you have any questions regarding this subject, please contact Dan Sackheim, Education Programs Consultant, Educational Options, Student Support, and American Indian Education Office, by phone at 916-445-5595 or by e-mail at dsackhei@cde.ca.gov.

Sincerely,

[Original Signed By]

William J. Ellerbee, Jr., Deputy Superintendent
Student Support and Special Services Branch

WE:ds

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