September 15, 2015
State Schools Chief Tom Torlakson Announces
Assistance to Districts and Students Affected by Wildfires
SACRAMENTO—State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson today announced that local educational agencies (LEAs)—which include school districts, charter schools, and county offices of education—will continue to receive state funding despite a possible loss of student attendance because of the wildfires.
"My deepest sympathies for the families, fire fighters, communities, students, and school districts that have been affected by the wildfires," said Torlakson. "In an emergency like this, I want to assure them that their schools will continue to receive state support, while we help find facilities where their children can continue their education."
The California Department of Education is working with districts to find facilities for students displaced from their schools by the wildfires, including portable classrooms. Districts affected by the wildfires whose teachers educate students in portable or other temporary classrooms, even if physically located outside their own district boundaries, can continue to count these students in their Average Daily Attendance (ADA).
ADA is the basis on which state funding for each district is calculated. If displaced students enroll in other districts, the home district may file a waiver for a loss of student attendance, and the enrolling district can also claim attendance for those students. For information on filing a waiver, districts may consult the Management Advisory 90-01 Web page. Also, the Department is requesting that districts, and others with surplus portable classrooms that can be loaned out to temporarily replace fire- damaged classrooms, notify the Department's School Facilities and Transportation Services Division, so they can be matched with districts in need.
The Department will be sending additional guidance on the waiver process to County Superintendents in the coming days.
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Tom Torlakson —
State Superintendent of Public Instruction
Communications Division, Room 5602, 916-319-0818, Fax 916-319-0100