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NKSD Audit Finding

NKSD Audit Finding

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Published by: sunnews820 on Nov 14, 2012
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12/04/2012

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Schedule of Audit Findings and Responses
North Kitsap School District No. 400Kitsap CountyOctober 1, 2012
1. The District lacked adequate controls over enrollment reporting for itsAlternative Learning Experience resulting in an overpayment ofapproximately $99,001.Background
 Alternative Learning Experience (ALE) is an individualized course of study conducted bythe school district that can be claimed for basic education funding provided it complieswith state regulations. The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI)establishes rules and provides guidance through classes and outreach on ALEenrollment reporting for state funding. District management is responsible for designingand following internal controls to provide reasonable assurance regarding the reliabilityof documentation supporting ALE enrollment as reported to OSPI.
 
Description of Condition
In the 2011 school year, the District reported 198 ALE students in its basic educationprogram. The District failed to separately report monthly ALE student counts anddocument the elements required to support ALE student reporting.Our audit identified the following weaknesses in internal controls that, when takentogether, represent a significant deficiency:Student learning plans
 
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State regulation requires each ALE student have a written learning plan designed
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edseveral students for ALE funding for whom it did not have written learning plans.
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State regulation requires plans to identify specific learning goals, performanceobjectives and requirements for successful course completion. The District didnot do so.
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State regulation requires the learning plan to identify all instructional materialsessential to successful completion of the goals and objectives of the program.State regulation also requires a description of the timelines and methods for evaluating student progress. The District did not have this information prepared.
 
 
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In addition, we found student files did not contain documented weekly contact; monthlyprogress reviews that would include Identifying support of the goals and objectives or milestones; and signed statements of understanding by parents to confirm theyunderstood the difference between ALE and home-based instruction.
Cause of Condition
District personnel were not aware of the requirements to claim funding for ALE studentsby separately reporting ALE on monthly enrollment reports and did not seek guidancefrom OSPI prior to claiming students in for the program. Additionally the assigned ALEspecialist did not monitor the program for compliance with District policy.
Effect of Condition
The District reported 186.53 monthly full-time equivalent students (20.73 annual FTE) for school year 2010-2011 in its ALE program for fiscal year 2011. We were able todetermine an error rate of 92.85 percent resulting in an over-reporting of 173.19 monthlyfull-time equivalent students (19.24 annual FTE) for the 2010-2011 school year, resultingin the District receiving approximately $99,001 more in apportionment funding than wasdue to it.
Recommendation
We recommend the District follow requirements for written student learning plans asoutlined in state regulations. Written student learning plans must:
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Identify specific instructional materials to be used for state requirements for courses of study and equivalents.
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Include measurable goals and objectives to include an explanation of timelines
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Clearly identify requirements for successful completion of each course within theplan and the methods the District uses to evaluate monthly progress.We also recommend the District ensure staff are adequately trained about ALErequirements to help ensure they only count students that comply with the state
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 We further recommend the District work with OSPI to determine resolution of theoverpayment.
Distr
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training and consultation recommendations to insure compliance with ALE program documentation and funding requirements. Due to recent changes in District 
 
 
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administration and leadership, however, the District has not had sufficient adequate time to fully examine existing documents or obtain information from other sources that may 
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s on-going review may produce information bearing on the number of inadequately documented or 
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error rate existed. Accordingly, at this time the District cannot concur that the reported overpayment amount is substantiated, and in working with OSPI to resolve the overpayment issue, the District reserves the right to address the accuracy of that sum and the projection methodology.
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We thank the District for its assistance during the audit and will review this area againduring our next audit.
Applicable Laws and Regulations
Washington Administrative Code 
(WAC) 392-121-182 [prior to amendment in 2011]provides the guidance for Alternative learning experience requirements:(3) Alternative learning experience implementation standards:(e) A school district that provides one or more alternative learningexperiences to a student shall provide the parent(s) or guardian of the student, prior to the student's enrollment, with a description of the difference between home-based instruction pursuant tochapter 28A.200 RCW and the enrollment option selected by thestudent. The parent or guardian shall sign documentation attestingto his or her understanding of the difference and thedocumentation shall be retained by the district and made availablefor audit.(4) Written student learning plan: Each student enrolled in an alternativelearning experience course of study shall have a written student learningplan d
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written student learning plan shall include, but not be limited to, thefollowing elements:(a) A beginning and ending date for the learning experience;(b) An estimate of the average number of hours per week that thestudent will engage in learning activities to meet the requirementsof the student learning plan. This estimate may be used inreporting enrollment in compliance with subsection (5) of thissection and must be based upon the criteria in subsection (a s6)of this section;(c) A description of how weekly contact requirements will befulfilled;

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