I want to recognize the heroes who have gone above and beyond to ensure our students transcripts and grades are correct. Throughout the district, employees dropped what they were doing this week to help our students. This included our teachers, counselors, Assistant Principals of Secondary Counseling Services, Principals, Education Service Center Superintendents, Directors, Counseling Coordinators, central office staff, and others.
This week, we had to endure several system outages. This is completely unacceptable and we are addressing the technical issues. In addition, the team will do a much better job communicating any outages.
I have asked our staff to seek assistance from outside experts (US Department of Education, California Department of Education, and other entities) to determine why the MISIS system malfunctioned. I have reached out to Microsoft’s top executives to provide assistance with assessing our current problems with the MISIS system. Be assured, that we are feverishly working to rectify issues with the MISIS system, however, we do not have a timeline as of yet when the entire system will be fully functional.
In addition, I have read Mr. Viramontes’ report on MiSiS. I want you to know that we have already made some changes to address the issues in this first report by Arnold Viramontes, and will continue to work to resolve the problems until we have a fully functioning student information system to serve the students, parents and employees of the Los Angeles Unified School District.
Mr. Viramontes will be providing weekly MiSiS reports on the progress we have made based on his initial findings. I look forward to using the information in the report to help guide our decision-making moving forward.
Finally, we held our first meeting for our newly formed Technology Advisory Committee with representatives from the District, the community, and many of our labor partners to review, discuss and make recommendations related to the implementation of technology systems for our schools.
I offer my sincere apologies for putting you through these unforeseen challenges. I understand that these setbacks require more effort and time from our employees. I am committed to providing compensation for any time that is spent addressing this issue above and beyond the regular workday. Again, I appreciate your efforts on behalf of LAUSD students and their families.
Superintendent Ramon C. Cortines
Top Issues Being Addressed
• As the elementary reporting period comes to a close, some schools are reporting issues with the progress reports in MiSiS that are making them unable to enter grades and/or print. Below is a detailed back up plan elementary progress reports if MiSiS is not functioning properly and if teachers have more than a few corrections that can be done by hand. This plan will provide a paper-based process for schools which will allow teachers to complete progress reports on paper instead of having to enter grades and print directly from MiSiS. Principals will make the decision to use the paper-based option.
All elementary schools will receive 11 X 17 copies of English and Spanish progress reports on NCR paper for the whole student body. Deliveries will take place by Wednesday at the latest. There will be 4 copies, 1 for the cumulative record and the other three for future marking periods, as needed. Envelopes with a centralized return address to School Mail Unit, in Pico Rivera will also be delivered from the warehouse. If an envelope is marked “Return to Sender", the School Mail Unit will return the envelope to the corresponding school. Mailing labels will need to be printed. A copy of the report cards in English, Spanish will be available on the MiSiS website at http://misis.lausd.net and on the Office of Curriculum, Instruction, and School Support (OCISS) website at http://achieve.lausd.net/Page/92. If you have a parent conference scheduled for the beginning of next week, you may want to download the progress report from either of these sites instead of waiting for the delivery. These can be printed from the websites on 8.5 x 14 paper. Cantonese, Korean, and Armenian versions of the progress report are being translated and will also be posted to the websites above when they are ready.
• As schools prepared to notify parents with the Annual Assessment Results and Program Placement for English Learners letter, issues with the accuracy of EL program data were realized. This was the result of the data conversion from Legacy SIS to MiSiS, and the combination of K-12 systems into one common system.
The information that follows will provide clarity on data, describe changes made to the data, and define the school’s role in monitoring and maintaining accurate EL program data.
Identified EL Data Issues
After analyzing various reports, it has been determined that a significant number of English Learner student records in all grades contained errors. These include:
o Missing/obsolete/incorrect ELD levels
o 13-14 Reclassification data was missing, or students were unable to reclassify due to missing data
o Missing/obsolete/incorrect Master Plan Program codes
Correction of ELD Levels
After an examination of data regarding ELD levels, it was determined that the Secondary SIS method of designating ELD levels by course name did not capture a student’s level of English proficiency. From this point forward, MiSiS will now populate secondary ELD levels, 1 – 5, by equating them to the most recent initial or annual overall CELDT score. Schools will be able to monitor secondary English Learner course placement using a new English Learner Student Schedule Summary Report, which is currently in development.
School Site Monitoring and Maintenance of EL Student Data
Selected schools with missing or obsolete data will be notified and asked to work with ESC EL Coordinators to ensure accuracy of EL data.
We have made steady progress to correct the data. We will continue to work with MiSiS and the Office of Data and Accountability until our data accurately reflects our EL students’ records. Our goal is to ensure that schools are able to monitor and use reliable EL student data in all areas.
Please refer to your Educational Service Center/MMED English Learner staff for more information.
• The team continues to work on the statistical reports. Central teams are reaching out to impacted schools to resolve this issue.
• Secondary 15-week grading window closes on November 12.
• Fall Survey corrections are due November 21.
• Due date for including school meal data for 2015-16 Title 1 ranking decisions has been extended to December 1, 2014. This will have no impact on the budget.