Compliance and Monitoring
The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB) requires the State Educational Agency (SEA) to monitor the implementation of program requirements and the expenditure of federal funds. Monitoring federal programs at the local level ensures compliance with regulations as well as to assure the quality of the program and the instructional delivery being utilized with at-risk populations is a primary focus for the Division of Compliance and Monitoring. Mississippi’s monitoring process for federal programs administered by the Office of Innovative Support (OIS) consists of: monitoring expenditures, single audits, self-assessments and on-site programmatic monitoring.
The procedures for monitoring specify that Local Educational Agencies (LEAs) participate in an on-site monitoring process on a three-year cycle. Approximately one-third of LEAs are monitored on-site (Cycle III) each year, one-third receives technical assistance (Cycle II) each year and one-third conduct their own self-assessment (Cycle I) using the consolidated federal programs monitoring instrument each year.
LEAs in Cycle III will have a comprehensive, formal monitoring visit conducted by a monitoring team to determine compliance with federal regulations of programs administered by the LEA. LEAs in Cycle II are provided technical assistance from the monitoring specialist assigned to the LEA. The LEAs federal programs coordinator collaborates with the monitoring specialist to schedule a time to provide technical assistance. The purpose of the technical assistance visit is to provide assistance prior to the formal monitoring visit. This is an opportunity for the monitoring specialist to provide feedback that will be used to strengthen the LEAs federal programs. LEAs in Cycle I have an opportunity to take a critical look at themselves and the monitoring instrument to ensure that their federal programs are in compliance. At this point, the LEA is putting out any potential “fires.” If there are questions concerning the use of the monitoring instrument as an annual self-assessment, applications, required plans, high-importance documents, required evaluations, needs assessments, or procedural manuals, the LEA contacts the monitoring specialist assigned to the LEA for technical assistance.