Managing Federal Programs During a Hot Summer

Summer is in full swing, and for many of us, staying indoors is the best way to escape the heat. But if you’re working through the summer, you might find that this season is surprisingly busy, especially when it comes to managing federal programs with schools out of session.

Here are some essential tasks to help you get a head start on the back-to-school rush:

Fiscal Year End

With the fiscal year ending, it’s crucial to ensure your new fiscal year budget is correctly uploaded into your financial management system. Verify that the FY24 budget carry-over matches the June 30 budget figures. Also, check that the FY25 budget aligns with your written plan.

Budget Management

Remember that Title I and Title V programs have a 15% carryover provision. This means 85% of these funds must be obligated by September 30, 2024. Although Mississippi is requesting a carryover waiver, approval is not guaranteed. Aim to spend down the budget to avoid potential issues.

Additionally, the FY22 grant is closing. Ensure all funds are obligated and ready for liquidation by December 31, 2024. The FY23 grant is also due to close at the same time, and while a waiver is being requested, it’s best to obligate funds by September 30, 2024, and liquidate by December 31, 2024. Reducing the number of grants to manage will streamline your workload.

Review and Revise Plans and Procedures

Several plans and procedures need annual review and revision. Make sure to clearly mark the review and revision dates:

  • EL District Plan: This plan requires annual board approval and should be disseminated to schools and posted on the district website and social media.
  • District Parent and Family Engagement Policy: This policy must be reviewed, revised, and board-approved annually. It’s typically updated during spring planning meetings and then posted on the district website and social media.
  • McKinney-Vento Homeless Procedures: While board approval isn’t required, districts must review these procedures to remove barriers for homeless students.
  • Foster Care Plan: Review and revise this plan to eliminate barriers to enrolling foster students, including transportation agreements with Child Protective Services. Collaboration on Best Interest Determinations (BID) and transportation procedures between agencies is essential.

Summer Programs and Professional Development

Many districts conduct professional development and offer summer school programs. Ensure proper documentation is collected to support teacher stipends. The federal programs office must ensure adequate staffing for summer programs, monitor student/teacher ratios, and verify teacher time sheets and Time and Effort documentation.

Monitoring Documentation

Use the summer to review school and district monitoring documentation from the previous year. Collecting and checking documentation throughout the year, especially for end-of-year submissions, simplifies the monitoring process when the time comes.

Take a Break

While summer is busy, finding time to relax and take a vacation is important. Leave work at the office and resist checking your email. Your work will be waiting for you to return!

By staying organized and proactive, you can manage federal programs effectively and still enjoy a well-deserved break during the summer.

 

 

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