Law Firm News

CDE Issues Template for Written Report in Place of LCAP; Executive Order N-56-20 Changes Budget Adoption Process for 2020-2021

May 2020
Number 35

The California Department of Education (CDE) has issued the template for local education agencies (LEAs) to use for their written report to the community explaining their changes to program offerings made in response to school closures to address COVID-19. Governor Newsom's Executive Order N-56-20 of April 22, 2020, provides that, for LEAs that adopt the written report as described, the deadline to adopt the Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP) and budget overview for parents is extended to December 15, 2020. The Executive Order defines LEAs to include school districts, county offices of education, and charter schools. Details of the written report and the Executive Order are summarized below.

  • The deadline for adoption of the LCAP and the budget overview for parents has been extended to December 15, 2020, provided that the LEA:
    • adopts a written report explaining changes to program offerings made in response to COVID-19;
    • submits the written report to the County Superintendent concurrently with the LEA’s 2020-2021 budget; and
    • posts a copy of the written report on the homepage of its website, all as further specified in Section 2 of the Executive Order.
  • The written report shall include a description of how the LEA is meeting the needs of unduplicated pupils (i.e., English learners, students eligible for a free or reduced-price meal and foster youth) to support the following during school closures:
    • Continue delivering high-quality distance learning opportunities;
    • Provide school meals in non-congregate settings; and
    • Arrange for supervision of students during ordinary school hours.
  • The written report must be adopted by the LEA’s governing board at the same meeting at which the 2020-2021 budget is adopted by the board.
  • The budget itself must still be adopted by July 1, 2020.
Takeaways

LEAs who choose to take advantage of the extended deadline for adopting the LCAP will not need to hold LCAP stakeholder meetings this spring nor provide for a public hearing on the LCAP. Accordingly, the budget adoption process can be streamlined, with the public hearing and adoption of the budget being accomplished during one meeting. This will require revisions to the LEA’s notice and agenda language related to the public hearings and the budget adoption process. Implementing the changes to the LCAP deadline may also require LEAs to revise or suspend the operation of certain Board Policies and/or Administrative Regulations, depending on whether they incorporate the original July 1 deadline for adoption of the LCAP.

If you have questions about this recent Executive Order or would like assistance in preparing the written report and modifying your budget adoption process, please contact the authors of the Client News Brief or an attorney at one of our eight offices located statewide. You can also subscribe to our podcast, follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn or download our mobile app.

Related Resources

The legal and practical realities of the current crisis are ever-changing. In our continued effort to equip public agencies with useful insights, we have compiled a suite of links to several resource and guidance documents and webpages available from the federal and state governments regarding COVID-19. You can access them here: http://www.lozanosmith.com/covid19.php.