Title I Schoolwide Program
A Schoolwide Program is a comprehensive school improvement effort designed to elevate the entire educational program of a Title I school. The Schoolwide Program option is based on the premise that comprehensive reform strategies—rather than separate, add-on services—are most effective in raising the achievement level of students most at risk of not meeting academic standards. Multiple resources, including Title I funds, are used to strengthen the academic program in the school for all students and accelerate the progress of students who would otherwise be eligible for Title I Targeted Assistance services. Schoolwide Programs are effective in addressing needs such as core instruction, social-emotional learning, school climate, behavior, student health, and engaging cultural communities.
Three core elements are required to be a Title I Schoolwide Program and are essential to its effective implementation:
- Conducting a comprehensive needs assessment, which examines the current status of the school and identifies the root cause(s) for students not meeting standards.
- Preparing a comprehensive school improvement plan to address the identified needs of the school.
- Annually evaluating the implementation and results of the schoolwide plan and, as needed, revising the plan.
A school operating a schoolwide program may use Title I funds for any activity which supports the needs identified through the comprehensive needs assessment and is specified in the schoolwide plan.
Eligibility and process to become a Title I Schoolwide Program:A Title I school is eligible to become a Schoolwide Program if:
- At least 40 percent of the students served by the school qualify for free or reduced-price lunch; or,
- The Minnesota Department of Education (MDE), upon request, waives the 40 percent poverty threshold.
A Title I school meeting either eligibility must substantiate how becoming a Schoolwide Program will meet the needs of its low-achieving students better than it can with Targeted Assistance services.
To become a Schoolwide Program, a Title I school must:
- Submit the Intent to Become a Title I Schoolwide Program by September 15 to be eligible to operate a Schoolwide Program in the following school year, and
- Engage in a one-year process to complete a comprehensive needs assessment in order to develop an appropriate comprehensive school improvement plan.
Timelines with due dates
Sept. 15 – School submits to MDE a completed Intent to Become a Title I Schoolwide Program.
Oct. 15 – MDE acknowledges receipt of Intent document and, if applicable, issues a decision on school eligibility waiver request.
Oct.-April – MDE trainings for developing and implementing a Title I Schoolwide Program.
April 1 – School submits to MDE a draft plan.
May – MDE sends comments and recommendations after review of the draft plan.
Sept. 1 – Local educational agency (LEA) uploads the LEA Confirmation of Title I Schoolwide Program in the State Educational Record Review and Submission System (SERVS) for each approved to operate a Schoolwide Program.
The following training module provides more information about Title I Schoolwide programs. The first module is designed to be viewed by all school staff considering the schoolwide option, or by staff in an existing schoolwide program, to fully understand what it means to operate as a Title I Schoolwide program. Additional modules will be posted as they are completed. Read the E-learning Module Nagivation document first for tips on how to navigate, view and hear this e-learning module.
Module 1: Title I Schoolwide Programs: Purposes and Requirements (13 minutes, 22 seconds)
MDE is also offering a series of workshops to assist a school in developing, implementing and improving a Schoolwide program. A school interested in becoming a Schoolwide program is expected to register and participate in these workshops after submitting the Intent to Become a Title I School program by September 15. Existing schoolwide programs are welcome to take advantage of this training as well.
The workshop series is scheduled for the following dates:
- October 16, 2019
- January 14, 2020
- April 22, 2020
Annual LEA approval to operate a Title I Schoolwide Program
Prior to every school year, each Title I school that has completed the work to start or continue operating a Schoolwide Program must submit the LEA Confirmation of Title I Schoolwide Program and supporting documentation to the administration of the LEA for its review and approval. If approved, the LEA must upload the completed and signed document in SERVS.