Title I-funded schools operating targeted assistance programs can transition to Title I schoolwide programs under the Every Student Succeeds Act, according to a memo from the New Jersey Department of Education.
Transitioning to a schoolwide program allows a district to use Title I funds to improve academic achievement and enables a school to more effectively leverage federal funds to upgrade its educational program.
Beginning in the 2022-2023 school year, any school that plans to transition to a Title I schoolwide program (as outlined on page four of the Title I Schoolwide Transition Process) must notify the NJDOE by completing the 2022-2023 Application of Intent to Operate a Title I Schoolwide Program by Wednesday, Dec. 22, 2021, and submitting it electronically to the Office of Supplemental Educational Programs.
Schools already approved to operate a Title I schoolwide program prior to the 2022-2023 school year do not need to re-apply annually.
The following Title I-funded targeted assistance schools may elect to transition to a Title I schoolwide program for the 2022-2023 school year:
- Title I targeted assistance schools with less than 40% poverty, for which the NJDOE grants an approved waiver (now completed and approved as part of the intent to operate application process).
- Title I targeted assistance schools that meet the 40% poverty requirement.
In accordance with ESEA Section 1114, a school operating a Title I targeted assistance program ESEA Section 1115 that elects to transition to a Title I schoolwide program must:
- Conduct at least one year of planning for a transition to a schoolwide program, which may be waived if the school previously operated under a strategic plan or improvement plan that addressed the entire school.
- Consult with all relevant school stakeholder groups.
- Submit an annual school plan that addresses the following required components:
- A comprehensive needs assessment of the entire school.
- Strategies to address school needs, including a description of how such strategies will: provide opportunities for all children, including each subgroup of students, as defined in ESEA §1111(c)(2), to meet the challenging state academic standards; use methods and instructional strategies that strengthen the academic program in the school, increase the amount and quality of learning time and help provide an enriched and accelerated curriculum, which may include programs, activities and courses necessary to provide a well-rounded education; and address the needs of all children in the school – particularly low-achieving students at risk of not meeting the challenging state academic standards, through various support activities.
- An annual evaluation of the implemented programs and services as articulated in the annual school plan.
Schoolwide Poverty Percentage Waiver Request
Schools with less than 40% poverty rates that are interested in transitioning to a Title I schoolwide program for the 2022-2023 school year must indicate that they will require a waiver on the application of intent to operate a Title I schoolwide program.
Schoolwide Program Guidance
To assist schools with the schoolwide transition process, the Office of Supplemental Educational Programs has created a “Title I Schoolwide Transition Process” guide. Additional details on Title I schoolwide programs are provided in the following guidance document from the United States Department of Education” “Supporting School Reform by Leveraging Federal Funds in a Schoolwide Program.” This guidance highlights advantages and flexibilities inherent in a Title I schoolwide program.
For questions about transitioning to a Title I schoolwide program, email the Title I schoolwide account at firstname.lastname@example.org.