|To: District and ESD Superintendents and Business Managers
From: Rob Saxton, Deputy Superintendent
Re: Clarification Regarding Reporting of Average Daily Membership for Students Taking Online Courses
The Department of Education was asked to provide clarification of the rules for the reporting of Average Daily Membership (ADM) for students taking online courses. This clarification should be regarded as a supplement to the information in the Student Accounting Manual .
Students in full-day programs who are taking all of their courses online, or some online and some in a brick-and-mortar setting, should be reported on an FTE basis using a standard record (ADMPrgTypCd = 01). Students may be either 1.0 FTE or 0.5 FTE.
Online students who are scheduled to participate in more than one-half of the full-day program are given an FTE of 1.0. Students who are scheduled to participate in one-half of the full-day program or less are given an FTE of 0.5.
The key measure in determining a student’s level of participation for FTE purposes is how many classes constitute a full load. This measure is independent of whether the school has a block schedule and is independent of the school’s daily schedule. If 7 classes is a full load, then a student taking three classes or fewer gets an FTE of 0.5, and a student taking four classes or more gets an FTE of 1.0. This determination of a student’s FTE is identical for students taking classes online and for those taking classes in a brick-and-mortar setting (or a combination of online and brick-and-mortar).
If a student takes online classes sequentially rather than concurrently, then the FTE of the student is determined by the number of classes in which the student was enrolled during the semester/term relative to the number that would constitute a full load. For example, if a student enrolled in four classes during a semester, then the student would receive an FTE of 1.0 (assuming a full load is 7 classes). If the student was enrolled in only three classes, then his or her FTE would be 0.5. If a student is withdrawn from a class due to the 10-day attendance rule described in item 6 below, then the class cannot be counted in determining the student’s FTE.
For counting attendance, students taking classes online are considered to be present for the entire week if they check in with their teacher at least twice a week and their teacher considers them to be making progress. If a student checks in only once during the week, then the student must be counted as absent for half the week (2.5 days). If the student does not check in at all during a week, the student must be counted as absent for the entire week (5 days). As long as the student maintains his or her attendance by checking in and the teacher determines that the student is making progress, the student can be counted in the district’s ADM even if the student does not complete the course. This treatment is identical to the treatment of students attending in a brick-and-mortar setting.
The check-in requirements for attendance reporting affect only the student’s attendance, not the calculation of the student’s ADM. As in brick-and-mortar settings, ADM is counted as long as the student is enrolled, even if the student is occasionally absent. And as with brick-and-mortar settings, if an online student is absent for 10 consecutive days the district must withdraw the student and stop including the student in the district’s ADM. In an online setting, this occurs when the student does not check in with his or her teacher for two consecutive weeks.
If you have additional questions, please refer to the Student Accounting Manual or contact Brian Reeder at Brian.Reeder@state.or.us .