Title I and Learning Assistance Program
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Title I

Guidelines on Comparability Requirements

Discretionary Provisions

The following provisions provide alternatives that a district may find advantageous to use in comparability calculations. Each district has the option of using some, none, or all of the provisions as district characteristics may warrant.

  • School buildings with an enrollment of fewer than 100 students may be excluded from the computation. (Very small schools may have substantially different staffing ratios than larger schools and, therefore, skew averages.)
  • School buildings may be divided into no more than four grade-span groupings for comparison purposes. (Elementary, middle, junior high, and high schools usually have different staffing patterns.
  • A district may categorize the schools in a grade span into groups of smaller and larger schools provided the largest school is at least twice as large as the smallest school.
  • The district may exclude from its calculation state-funded FTE staff time for the Learning Assistance Program (LAP), bilingual education services for children with limited English proficiency (LEP), and special education services provided to children with disabilities. (Special services are often offered at greatly reduced staff/student ratios and are located in one building that serves students from several schools. Including these staff members in a building’s staff/student ratio would unfairly skew the calculation.) Exclusion of these staff members in the computation must be consistent among and between buildings within the grade span selected for comparison purposes.
  • When determining comparability of services, a district need not include unpredictable changes in student enrollment or personnel assignments that occur after the beginning of a school year.

Comparability Bulletin (B052-09)

Non-Regulatory Fiscal Guidance

Comparability Presentation (PDF)


   Updated 1/29/2014

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