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Idaho education board shifts way attendance is calculated

December 15, 2021

The Idaho State Board of Education today approved a temporary rule shifting the methodology for calculating average daily attendance for public school funding from daily attendance to average full-time equivalent (FTE) student enrollment for the current academic year. The average full-time equivalent student enrollment methodology is based on weekly enrollment reporting and includes restrictions based on student absenteeism.

The action occurred during the State Board’s regular Board meeting in Boise and is the second year in a row that the Board has enacted a temporary rule to account for fluctuating attendance caused as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Board will also present legislation during the 2022 legislative session to make the shift to enrollment-based funding permanent.

“With so many students staying home this year, because they are feeling sick and quarantining, our public schools, system-wide stood to lose nearly $100 million if we funded the system based only on daily attendance this year,” Board President Kurt Liebich said. “We are already working with legislators and stakeholders on switching to FTE enrollment-based funding permanently. We just can’t risk such a big funding hit this year. Our school board members, administrators and educators already have enough to worry about and stable funding shouldn’t be one of them.”

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