May 26, 2010- Decision Letter on Request to Amend Utah Accountability Plan

May 26, 2010

The Honorable Larry Shumway
Superintendent of Public Instruction
Utah State Office of Education
P.O. Box 144200
Salt Lake City, Utah 84114-4200

Dear Superintendent Shumway:

I am writing in response to Utah’s request to amend its state accountability plan under Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended (ESEA). Following discussions between the Department and your staff, you made certain changes to Utah’s accountability plan, which are now included in the amended plan that Utah submitted to the Department on January 13, 2010. I am pleased to approve Utah’s amended plan, which we will post on the Department’s website. A summary of Utah’s requested amendments is enclosed with this letter. As you know, any further requests to amend Utah’s accountability plan must be submitted to the Department for review and approval as required by section 1111(f)(2) of Title I of the ESEA.

Please also be aware that approval of Utah’s accountability plan for Title I, including the amendments approved herein, does not indicate that the plan complies with Federal civil rights requirements, including Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, and requirements under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.

I am confident that Utah will continue to advance its efforts to hold schools and school districts accountable for the achievement of all students. If you need any additional assistance to implement the standards, assessment, and accountability provisions of the ESEA, please do not hesitate to contact Vicki.Robinson@ed.govor of my staff.


Thelma Meléndez de Santa Ana, Ph.D.

cc: Governor Gary R. Herbert
Judy Park

Amendment to Utah’s Accountability Plan

The following is a summary of Utah’s amendment requests. Please refer to the Department’s website (www.ed.gov for Utah’s complete accountability plan.

Timeline for making adequate yearly progress (AYP) determinations (Element 1.4)

Revision: Utah updated its accountability workbook to reflect a change in its timeline for making AYP determinations. The new timeline will allow the Utah State Office of Education (USOE) to make AYP determinations by July 30, thereby enabling local educational agencies and schools to notify parents of their school choice options at least 14 days prior to the start of the school year, as required by 34 C.F.R. § 200.37(b)(4)(iv).

High-school mathematics assessment (Element 6.1)

Revision: Utah updated its accountability workbook to reflect a change in its mathematics assessment for high schools (grades 10 – 12). USOE has identified grade 10 and Algebra 1 as the mathematics assessment it will use for high-school AYP calculations. Mathematics achievement in grades 10-12 is determined through performance on the Algebra 1 Core CRT taken in grade 10. Students who take the Algebra 1 CRT prior to grade 10 will have their score “banked” and the Algebra 1 score will be included in AYP when the student is enrolled in the 10th grade. This change will be implemented during the 2010-2011 school year.

Decision Letters on State Accountability Plans