Newsblast - September 2017 Print

17/18 Pupil Accounting Manual released

The new Pupil Accounting Manual for 2017-18 has been released by MDE, and you can find the new document at:

Here’s a summary of the changes:

Section 1 (Enrollment Records) – Parent or guardian consent is now required for students enrolled in virtual courses, and that consent must be part of the student’s enrollment record. In related language in section 5-I, MDE has indicated that this should NOT be something that causes FTE deductions for the 17/18 school year (see below).

Section 2 – For special education students seeking reduced schedules, wording has been added to this section that is designed to clarify who can authorize the reduced schedule, and in which circumstances it is, or is not, allowed.

Section 3 – On page 5, there is new wording about calculating FTE. This is intended to clarify the methodology used to calculate FTE for students in several different situations. 

On page 7-9 of this section, the rules are laid out on how: early/middle college (EMC) programs can count students for more than 1.00 FTE; the new .75 FTE cap on shared time students; as well as clarifications on other FTE exceptions.  Please note that the calculations at the bottom of page 8 show the hours of instruction provided multiplied by hours of possible instruction, and in fact, they should be divided.

Section 5A – On page 2, language was added to clarify the attendance requirements for learning labs. There are also clarifying Q & A items added to page 4 regarding FTE calculation for students in learning labs.

Section 5D – Wording has been changed to clarify teacher and instructional time requirements for homebound/hospitalized students (page 1). A new Q & A on page 4 states that instructional sessions for special education students in homebound/hospitalized programs must have their instruction separated by at least 30 minutes to be considered nonconsecutive.

Section 5E – The FTE that can be earned by shared time students is now capped at 0.75. The restriction that the FTE may not be artificially prorated is removed, so that the FTE for a single overly-subscribed student may be adjusted down to the cap without having to be concerned about the FTE in each of the student’s constituent courses.

In addition, be aware that the legislated change that kindergarten students have the same non-essential course limitations as other grades have been lifted by an agreement between MDE and the legislature.  Kindergarten students may be taught any subject area without limitation, subject to the .75 FTE cap.

There are new definitions of what is considered a non-essential course listed on page 2 of this section. There are differing standards for students in grades 1-8, and for those taking high school courses.

Section 5-G-A – Dual enrollment. Language has been added to several parts of this section to clarify the intent that districts may provide more dual enrollment than the required minimums if they choose to.  Wording has also been added to page 4 to clarify dual enrollment for students in their 5th year of high school.

Section 5-G-B –  Early/Middle College (EMC) – Language has been changed in this section to clarify the distinction between an EMC school, and a program, as well as clarification on some of the count requirements. Note that the lifting of the 1.00 FTE limit for these students is NOT included in this section, but is included in Section 3 (see above).

Section 5-H – Reduced Schedules. Wording has been added here that reiterates the language in section 2 that discusses the requirements and limitations for special education students with reduced schedules.

Section 5I – Schools of Choice. Clarifying language has been added regarding cost sharing agreements for special education students seeking enrollment under schools of choice, as well as language in allowing students enrolled under SOC to continue in their new schools. Note that the anticipated language on State Aid penalties for those districts not able to reach agreement on cost sharing is NOT included at this time.  The Department is seeking more discussion before activating any additional penalties.

Section 5-O - This section has been extensively reworked:

Section 5-O-A -  No longer deals with online courses, but now is limited to independent study and distance learning.

Section 5-O-B -  Also no longer has online learning, as waivers are no longer required for online course enrollment. 5-O-B now deals only with offline or project-based learning.

Section 5-O-C  - Continues to define the differences between schools offering some online learning, and those who are ONLY engaged in online instruction.

Section 5-O-D - Is now the sole container of requirements for online students. Among the changes in this section is the new requirement of documented parental consent to take online courses, along with the limitation of this new rule to general audit findings only for 17/18 (meaning that no FTE should be deducted this year for lack of this documentation). There is also a new requirement for a completed educational development plan (EDP) for any student, including those in grades K-6, taking more than two online courses at a time.

The section goes on to explain the additional ways student participation may be shown and provides clarifying language on the 2-way interaction standard as well.

There is also clarifying language on the certification requirements of instructors in these programs, as well as an extensively rewritten and expanded Q & A section. 

NOTE: If you provide any online classes for your students, this is one section worth a careful read. Brian Ciloski and Jessica Beagle from MDE will be conducting a session at our fall conference on this section of the manual.

Section 5P – The section on work based learning has been heavily edited, to remove much of the section that doesn’t provide information on the required pupil accounting rules for work based programs, but provides guidance on running the program itself. The intent is to simplify the language and make work based opportunities more available in both CTE-approved and non-CTE programs, including internships and apprenticeships.

Section 6-B – Peer-to-Peer Programs. This section has been revised to eliminate the distinction between general education and special education. The intent is to make these programs available across the board for any students that may benefit from them.

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Still time to register for the 2017 Fall Conference!

Registration for the Fall 2017 MPAAA Conference, being held September 18th – 20th at the Troy Marriott hotel, is still open. Click HERE to register!

Attendees may attend just the Certification Day, on Monday, The conference itself on Tuesday and Wednesday, or all three days for a discounted price.

With all the changes to the Pupil Accounting Manual this year (see above article), this is an important year to NOT miss the fall conference. 

Keep in mind that a single FTE found, or not lost, because of information learned at this conference, will pay for the cost of the conference MORE THAN 10 TIMES OVER! We look forward to seeing you all in Troy!

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English Learner Exit Deadline Approaching

The deadline to submit a 2016-17 English Learner (EL) Exit in the state’s enrollment system (MSDS- – Michigan Student Data System) is Wednesday, September 13, 2017, at 11:59 PM. 

Schools and districts should currently be:

  1. reviewing their available data to determine which English Learner (EL) students are eligible to exit EL services, then 
  2. working with their district’s pupil accounting person to report the EL Exit information in the state’s enrollment system (MSDS – Michigan Students Data System) for those EL students.

Any 2016-17 English Learner (EL) students not reported as exited from an EL program in MSDS using the conditions below will continue to be EL students for 2017-18, even if the district does not re-report them as EL in MSDS.

To determine which EL students are eligible to be exited from an EL program, schools and districts must use the EL Entrance & Exit Protocol posted on the Education Improvement and Innovation web page (, which in part uses Spring WIDA results. The student data file containing Spring 2017 WIDA ACCESS for ELLs 2.0 and Alternate ACCESS for ELLs scores has been loaded into the Secure Site ( under Reports > Student Test Scores.

Once a school or district has determined an EL student is eligible to be EL exited, they will need to work with their district pupil accounting person to submit EL Exit information in MSDS. An MSDS EL exit record must have all of the following characteristics to successfully exit the student from EL services:

  • use the 2016-17 (Student Record Maintenance) SRM MSDS collection (i.e., waiting until Fall 2017 Count Day will be too late)
  • have a [Certification Date] on or before 9/13/2017
  • have a [EL Exit Date] after the [As Of Date] of the last record reporting the student as EL
  • have a [EL Exit Date] on or before 6/30/2017
  • have a [As Of Date] on or before 6/30/2017

For additional questions regarding: 

  • how to use the EL Entrance and Exit Protocol to determine which students are eligible for EL Exit – contact the Office of Field Services at 517-373-6066, and ask for Shereen Tabrizi, Unit Manager, or Kelly Alvarez, English Learner Consultant
  • how to appropriately submit 2016-17 EL Exit information in MSDS – contact the Center for Educational Performance & Information (CEPI) at
  • the 2017 WIDA Student Data File - call 1-877-560-8378, Option 3, or e-mail

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MPAAA Mentor Program

MPAAA is continuing its mentor program to allow staff new to pupil accounting the opportunity to ‘partner’ with an experienced colleague who can serve as a sounding board for questions, and a guide through the intricacies of this profession!

We’ll be pairing folks based on three different criteria: location in the State, size of the district, and SIS software used. We’ll ask mentorees to assign ranks to each of these categories so they can be matched based on criteria that are most relevant in their eyes.

Program commitments:

Mentors. Those who agree to mentor are asked to:

  • Get in touch with your mentoree at least monthly
  • Respond as quickly as practical to questions from your mentoree
  • Be willing to say ‘I don’t know’ and suggest who they should contact when you are unsure of the answer to a question

Mentorees. Those wishing to be mentored are asked to:

  • Understand that your mentor is working from the best of their knowledge, and to understand their answers are NOT the final authority
  • Keep in regular contact with your mentor, even if things are going well!
  • Let your mentor and MPAAA know when you are ready to end the mentor relationship

Contact the MPAAA Executive Director, Rob Dickinson (, if you would like to participate in the mentor program, and did not receive the recent invitation to complete the enrollment survey.

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