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RULE §97.1071Special Program Performance; Monitoring, Review, and Supports

(a) School districts and open-enrollment charter schools are subject to general supervision and monitoring activities for compliance with state law and federal regulation and review of program implementation and effectiveness within certain special populations of students. Activities may include:

  (1) random, targeted, or cyclical reviews authorized under Texas Education Code (TEC), §39.056, conducted remotely or on-site to identify problems implementing state and federal requirements and to provide support for development of reasonable and appropriate strategies to address identified problems; and/or

  (2) intensive or special investigative remote or on-site reviews authorized under TEC, §39.057.

(b) Activities described in subsection (a) of this section are applicable for compliance with requirements for reading diagnosis in TEC, §28.006, and dyslexia and related disorders in TEC, §38.003, and §74.28 of this title (relating to Students with Dyslexia and Related Disorders).

(c) The commissioner of education shall assign school districts, including open-enrollment charter schools, an annual determination level based on performance levels of certain special populations student groups under §97.1005 of this title (relating to Results Driven Accountability) according to the following general criteria:

  (1) the degree to which the district's performance reflects a need for targeted or intensive supports, as indicated by the seriousness, number, extent, and duration of the student performance, program effectiveness, and/or program compliance deficiencies identified by the Texas Education Agency (TEA);

  (2) a comparison of the district's performance relative to aggregated state performance and state performance standards;

  (3) a statistical distribution of districts exhibiting a comparable need for targeted support; and

  (4) the length of time the performance standard has been in place and the length of time the district has exhibited deficiencies under the standard.

(d) In addition to performance levels determined under §97.1005 of this title, the commissioner may consider any other applicable information, such as:

  (1) complaints investigation results;

  (2) special education due process hearing decisions;

  (3) data validation activities;

  (4) integrity of assessment or financial data;

  (5) longitudinal intervention history; and

  (6) other federally required elements.

(e) The standards used to assign districts to specific determination levels under this section are established annually by the commissioner and communicated to all school districts. Determination level categories for assignment include:

  (1) meets requirements;

  (2) needs assistance;

  (3) needs intervention; and

  (4) needs substantial intervention.

(f) In addition to determination levels described in subsections (c) and (e) of this section, the commissioner may develop a system of cyclical monitoring to ensure every district participates in general supervision activities. Based on a district's assigned determination level, as part of its cyclical monitoring process, or as part of compliance monitoring activities, a district may be required to implement and/or participate in:

  (1) focused self-analysis of district data and program effectiveness;

  (2) focused remote and/or on-site review;

  (3) required stakeholder engagement;

  (4) focused compliance reviews;

  (5) strategic support and continuous improvement planning; and/or

  (6) corrective action plan development.

(g) The commissioner shall notify in writing each district identified for review under this section as a result of assigned determination level or cyclical selection prior to requiring a district to implement or participate in any activities included in subsection (f)(1)-(6) of this section.

(h) Actions taken under this section are intended to assist the district in raising its performance and/or achieving compliance under §97.1005 of this title, statutory requirements in TEC, §28.006 and §38.003, and §74.28 of this title and do not preclude or substitute for a sanction under another provision of this subchapter.

(i) Actions taken under this section do not preclude or substitute for other responses to or consequences of program ineffectiveness or noncompliance identified by the TEA, such as:

  (1) required fiscal audit of specific program(s) and/or of the district, paid for by the district;

  (2) required submission of improvement and/or corrective action plan(s), including the provision of compensatory services as appropriate, paid for by the district;

  (3) expanded oversight, including, but not limited to, frequent follow-up contacts with the district, submission of documentation verif ying implementation of intervention activities and/or an improvement plan, and submission of district/program data;

  (4) public release of monitoring review findings;

  (5) denial of requests under TEC, §7.056 and/or §12.114;

  (6) reduction, suspension, redirection, or withholding of program funds;

  (7) lowering of the special education determination level of the district; and/or

  (8) lowering of the district's accreditation status, academic accountability rating, and/or financial accountability rating.

Source Note: The provisions of this §97.1071 adopted to be effective January 6, 2008, 33 TexReg 150; amended to be effective July 28, 2010, 35 TexReg 6523; amended to be effective February 5, 2015, 40 TexReg 437; amended to be effective January 5, 2021, 45 TexReg 160

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