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Please contact the OPI Help Desk at or 406.444.0087


Summary of OPI Activities for October 2016

Office of the Superintendent

Highlights for the Month

This month's Summary of Activities has information about upcoming workshops, important dates to remember and a way to celebrate Farm to School month.  Here is just a sample of what you'll find:

  • Fall student count date
  • OPI sponsored bills for the 2017 Legislative Session
  • Adoption of science standards for K-12
  • The 2016-17 school directories
  • Upcoming workshop for CTE professionals
  • New courses on the Teacher Learning Hub
  • Montana Crunch Time is October 24th

For more information, contact Terry Kendrick, 444-3449

OPI Bills for the 2017 Legislative Session

The Office of Public Instruction has requested six bills to be drafted for the 2017 legislative session. These include

  • LC 161 - Provide ANB funding for 19 year olds
  • LC 162 - Raise legal dropout age to 18 or upon graduation
  • LC 163 - Increase K-12 BASE Aid
  • LC 164 - Pupil Definition for ANB
  • LC 165 - Increased funding for Special Education Cooperatives
  • LC 166 - Inflationary increase for Special Education Allowable Cost Payment

LC 163 increases the basic and per ANB entitlements, the quality educator payment, the Indian Education for All payment, the American Indian achievement gap payment and the data for achievement payment by the inflationary factors calculated in accordance with 20-9-326, MCA.  The inflators will be 1.37% in FY 2018 and 1.0% in FY 2019. The price tag for this bill is currently estimated at $34.1 million for the 2019 biennium. This cost is calculated using FY 2017 appropriations as the basis for comparison purposes.

LC 165 increases the annual appropriation for the state special education allowable cost payment by $2 million and revises the distributions in 20-9-321, MCA to direct the $2 million increase to special education cooperatives for administration and travel. This proposal was developed by the Special Education Cooperative Funding Task Force to address the funding challenges facing the state’s 21 special education cooperatives. The task force was created by Superintendent Juneau following the 2015 legislative session.

For descriptions of all six of these proposed bills, go to desired text here.

For more information, contact Madalyn Quinlan, Chief of Staff, 406-444-3168

Update from ESSA Stakeholders

On September 26, 2016, members of the Stakeholders Group met to tackle the challenging concepts included in Accountability and establishing long-term goals as required by ESSA.  These representatives gave feedback and recommendations regarding the process by which districts would be identified for either comprehensive or targeted support under the Accountability requirements of the law.   

Four scenarios were provided as mechanisms to consider in determining the most challenged 5% of school districts in need of comprehensive support.  Comprehensive support includes consideration of student proficiency, academic growth and an additional element to be determined.  If a district is struggling within all of these student performance areas, they would be identified for comprehensive support.  If a subgroup (e.g. American Indian students, girls, boys or English Learners) are struggling, the district would then be identified as needing Targeted Support.  Targeted Support is intended to help that district or school develop strategies that result in better outcomes for the identified subgroup.

The day’s discussion was rich, informative and helpful in identifying options for consideration.    Additionally, student growth-models are highly valued by the stakeholders.  Districts and schools are invested in demonstrating gains toward goals and believe it is a more contemporary and useful measure of growth.

The list of stakeholders is available under the ESSA tab on the OPI website.  We encourage you to connect with these members to ask questions, share concerns and develop ideas.  You will also find additional information about ESSA on our website.  The next scheduled stakeholder meeting is scheduled for October 24, 2016 in Helena. 

For more information, contact Candy Lubansky, 444-7325

New Science Standards Adopted by BPE

On September 16, 2016, the Montana Board of Public Education unanimously approved Superintendent Denise Juneau's recommendations for new content standards in science.  Standards define what all students are expected to know and be able to do by grade level or band, but standards do not define specific curriculum or materials used in the classroom.

What are the big changes to the Science Standards from the 2006 version?

  • The new standards are organized by grade level for K-5, and by grade band for middle and high school. The previous standards were benchmarked at grades 4, 8 and 12.
  • The new standards integrate Indian Education for All.
  • The new standards move from general content standards across all science disciplines to three distinct disciplines: earth and space science, life science, and physical science.

The new science content standards will be implemented in July 2017. 

For more information, contact Jael Prezeau, 444-3128

Montana Crunch Time

Celebrate National Farm to School Month by crunching into locally and regionally grown apples on October 24 at 2:00 p.m. MST

This collective crunch encourages healthy eating and promotes Farm to School and Buy Local initiatives throughout the state. It also a fun way to connect food and nutrition into learning! The Office of Public Instruction, Montana Team Nutrition Program, Farm to Cafeteria Network, Montana FoodCorps, Eat Right Montana and other statewide partners have created a guide and additional resources to help every Montanan crunch into a delicious apple this October.

To register to participate in Montana Crunch Time and receive your guide, visit . Make sure to collect a “crunch byte” (video, photos, or audio) to share! Use #MTCrunchTime to share you crunch byte on Social Media. 

For more information, contact Aubree Roth, 994-5996

Excellence in Achievement

Ridge View Elementary School in Belgrade and Harlem High School in Harlem received the 2016 Distinguished Schools Award through the Office of Public Instruction and National Title I Association.

Ridge View received the High Achieving schools award for their students’ performance on the Smarter Balanced Assessment. Sixty-nine percent of students tested proficient or advanced in English/language arts, and 74 percent were proficient or advanced in math.

Harlem High School received the Excellence in Serving Special Populations award for its Graduation Matters Montana work. Harlem’s graduation rate has increased from 66 percent in 2013 to 91 percent in 2015.

Both schools will receive $12,500 and will attend the National Title I Conference in February. To qualify for the awards, the school must have a Title I program and have a poverty rate of at least 35 percent.

For more information, contact Emilie Ritter Saunders, 444-3160

Montana Early Learning Roadmap

State Superintendent Denise Juneau announced the release of the Montana Early Learning Roadmap: A Community Framework during a visit to a Helena preschool last week.  For the past year, OPI staff have worked with four Montana communities – Anaconda, Hardin, Crow Agency and Great Falls – that have a Graduation Matters Montana initiative and are part of the Montana Preschool Development Grant to learn how local school districts, preschool providers, Head Start programs, social services agencies and families are coming together to expand early learning opportunities in Montana. Click here to read about how these Montana communities and others are using the Graduation Matters Montana framework to build teams; use data; implement effective practices; and communicate their work throughout the community.  Let us know if you’d like us to come to your community to do a workshop on the Montana Early Learning Roadmap!

For more information, contact Deb Halliday, 444-3559

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Accreditation and Educator Preparation

TEAMS Work Sessions

The OPI is happy to announce we are providing TEAMS Work Sessions once again this fall! During these sessions, participants will bring and enter their own data into TEAMS, with face-to-face assistance from OPI staff. Link to registration, dates, and times:

Link to the TEAMS Help Page:

For more information, contact OPI TEAMS, 406-444-9444

March 6, 2016 due date for Variances to Standards Applications

The Board of Public Education rule ARM 10.55.604 Variances to Standards provides trustees of accredited schools the opportunity "to implement variances to standards designed to meet or exceed results under established standards." Local trustees interested in seeking initial or renewal application for a variance to a standard must submit the application by Monday, March 6, 2017.

The Variances to Standards rule requires trustees to produce evidence of local public participation and official approval of the application before submission to the Variances to Standards Review Board. Successful applications will be effective September 1, 2017.

Initial application

Renewal application

For more information, contact Patty Muir, 406-444-4317

Licensed Educator Deadline

December 1, 2016, is the date that all licensed educators must have registered his or her license with the Office of Public Instruction (OPI). If not registered by this date, educators are considered not licensed for accreditation purposes.

For assistance, contact Patty Muir

For more information, contact OPI Accred, 406-444-4317


November 15, 2016 is the date that post-secondary institutions must register internships with the OPI. If the internship is not registered, the new endorsement area will not be reflected on the educator’s license and this could result in an accreditation deviation.

For more information, contact OPI TEAMS, 406-444-9444

Continuous School Improvement Plan

The Continuous School Improvement Plan (CSIP) and Title I Planning applications are open for the 2016–2017 school year. Plans are to be completed by October 31, 2016, when the applications will be closed.

For assistance with the CSIP, contact Patty Muir, 406-444-4317 or

For assistance with Title I Planning, contact Jack O’Connor, 406- 444-3083

For more information, contact Heather Denny, 406-444-2036

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JUMP Newsletter

The September 2016 MontCAS newsletter, JUMP, is online:

For more information, contact Judy Snow, 444-3656


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Career Technical and Adult Education

New CTE Professionals Workshop

Professional Development Designed Specifically for those New to the Career & Technical Education Classroom

 The Office of Public Instruction’s Career and Technical Education Specialists will be conducting a New CTE Professionals Workshop on Wednesday, October 19, in Bozeman at the GranTree Inn, prior to the start of the 2016 Montana ACTE Institute.

 The New CTE Professionals Workshop is a FREE professional development opportunity designed specifically for Career & Technical Education professionals in their first, second, or third year in the classroom or for those teachers new to Career & Technical Education in Montana.

 This professional development opportunity will provide teachers who are new to the classroom, as well as those with less than four years of experience, with information on a variety of topics essential for success in the career and technical education classroom including

  • Perkins funding,
  • State CTE funding,
  • Advisory boards,
  • Professional development,
  • Professional organizations,
  • Montana’s Big Sky Pathways Initiative and the Development of Programs of Study,
  • CTE and program-area standards and guidelines, and
  • Career & Technical Student Organizations.

 The workshop will be held at the GranTree Inn (1325 North 7th Avenue) from 8 am to 4 pm. The training is free of charge and lunch will be provided for attendees. Up to six (6) OPI Renewal Units will be offered. Attendees are responsible for their own travel and substitutes.

 Additional details about the New CTE Professionals Workshop, including a schedule of events, are currently posted on the Secondary CTE page of the OPI website ( under the In The News heading and can be downloaded via the following link:

 Registration for the 2016 New CTE Professionals Workshop can be completed and submitted online at The deadline to register is Monday, October 3.

 Please note, registration for the 2016 New CTE Professionals Workshop does not also include the Montana ACTE Fall Institute. Registration for the Montana ACTE Fall Institute must be submitted separately. Montana ACTE Fall Institute registration details can be found at

 For registration assistance or for more information, please contact the appropriate CTE program specialist:

Business Education: Eric Swenson,, 406.444.7991

Family & Consumer Sciences Education: Megan Vincent,, 406.444.3599

Health Sciences Education: Renee Harris,, 406444.994.6986.

Industrial Trades & Technology Education: Don Michalsky,, 406.444.4452

For more information, contact Christy Hendricks, 406.444.9019

CTE Fall Data Collection

The fall CTE data collection begins on October 1 and ends on December 31, 2016. The fall CTE data collection is a follow-up to last year's Spring CTE data collection. Students identified as CTE Concentrators who graduated last year (2015-2016 school year) must be contacted between October 1 and December 31 and have their current post-graduation status identified in the Achievment in Montana (AIM) data system. Schools who receive funding from the Carl D. Perkins federal grant program are required to complete this fall follow-up collection.

Instructions for completing the CTE data collection are located on the OPI Secondary CTE web page under 'Data Collections'.

Questions regarding the CTE data collection should be directed to the AIM Helpdesk at 1.877.424.6681 (toll-free) or e-mail Questions regarding Carl D. Perkins should be directed to Christy Hendricks, CTE/Perkins Data Control Specialist at 406.444.9019 or e-mail


For more information, contact Christy Hendricks, 406.444.9019

2016-2017 Perkins Grant Approval REMINDER


The CTE Division of the OPI reminds all high school districts intending to submit a 2016-2017 Perkins grant application to please obtain final OPI approval of your initial Perkins application through the E-Grants system no later than Monday, October 31, 2016.

Only the initial/original application is subject to this deadline. Amendments to your approved Perkins application can occur after the October date. To view which CTE Specialist approves your Perkins grant application click here. This document can also be found on the OPI Secondary CTE web page under 'Perkins Federal Funding'. If you have questions regarding the status of your Perkins grant application, please contact one of the following CTE Division staff:

Renee Harris--phone, 406.994.6986; email,

Christy Hendricks--phone, 406.444.9019; email,

For more information, contact Christy Hendricks, 4064036653

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Centralized Services

2016-2017 School Directory

The 2016-2017 Directory of Montana Schools is now on our Web Site...

We have ordered enough copies to distrbute to all OPI staff. Copies for non OPI staff can be obtained by contacting Print and Mail Services 406-444-1494 or email Joe Mackay at

The directory's expected availabillty date is mid-October but Print and Mail Services can take orders immediately.

The mail room will hand deliver the directory's to staff in each of the OPI buildings but will need mailing information for any off site OPI staff who wish to receive one.

Thank you

For more information, contact Carol Monroe, 444-4404

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Content Standards and Instruction

Content Standards and Professional Learning News

OPI Professional Learning Opportunities Portal

The OPI Professional Learning Opportunities Portal shares information about the workshops and training happening across the state from the OPI and Montana’s many other professional learning providers. Watch this short video for a tour!

OPI Teacher Learning Hub  

Join an Online PLC!

These courses are creating a community of teachers across Montana in order to share best practices, solve problems, and collaborate. You can find recordings of previous meetings plus information on how to join upcoming online monthly meetings.  Check out the PLCs in these content areas: Math - History - Writing - Science and Library coming soon!

New Courses

Welcome to our School! An Introduction for Substitute Teachers

  • Satisfies the 3-hour training requirement
  • Free and self-paced

Watch for this course to open by the end of September!  

 English Language Arts  

Montana’s Online Writing Professional Learning Community (PLC) is a live webinar that takes place on the 2nd Wednesday of each month. It is a place for teachers in all content areas and from across Montana to collaborate and share best practices for teaching writing, ask questions, and participate in shared writing activities. Join hosts Bridgett Paddock and Wendy Tyree of Skyview High School on the second Wednesday of every month at 3:45.

Visit this site for more information and to join the monthly meeting.  You can also find the meeting information on the OPI Professional Learning Opportunities Portal.

In addition, you may go to the Teacher Learning Hub to enroll in the MT Writing Teachers PLC course and earn renewal units. New courses will be coming soon for writing in grades K-2, 3-5 and 5-12, so stay tuned for more information on these courses.


The OPI-sponsored STREAM Project offers outstanding and FREE professional learning  for your K-12 mathematics teachers! STREAM has something for everyone to improve mathematics teaching and learning. Three amazing opportunities include an all year High School program, an on site k-8 guide program, and convenient online courses.  Please encourage your teachers to apply – they will earn benefits, network with peers, and  increase their knowledge of content, standards, and Mathematical Practices! Visit STREAM Math for more information.

Intersections: A Virtual Math Community.  Math teachers all across Montana are working through everyday teaching issues like homework, grading, behavior management, planning, grouping, student engagement, etc. etc. etc. Now you don’t have to do it alone. Join us for Intersections to hear teachers’ best teaching pro-tips and share yours!  Meets every second Wed @ 3:45 on GoToMeeting. Renewal hours available.

Math Matters Montana:  Returning for another year, Math Matters Montana provides a one day training in your neck of the woods.  This year’s topic is Using Rich Tasks.  Remaining sessions will be located in Plevna, Glendive, Wolf Point, Fort Benton, Hardin, Plains, and Virginia City.  Find more information and register here.

Science News

On September 16, the Montana Board of Public Education adopted new science standards. Watch this video for a quick overview.  Visit the OPI Academic Standards page for a user-friendly Science Standards PDF.  Additional resources will be posted soon.

Professional development for implementing the new science standards are available at no cost through the Montana Partnership with Regions for Excellence in STEM (MPRES).  They are offering several long-term online learning sessions that could benefit an entire staff with limited (reimbursable) travel expenses. 

The Teacher Learning Hub also provides professional development courses in the science standard’s transition with some exemplar lesson ideas.

Additional professional development opportunities are being offered using NASA materials through the Northwest Earth and Space Science Pipeline Grant (NESSP)

Join the Science Professional Learning Community that is being organized and will be up and running by mid-October.  Please contact Michelle McCarthy if you are interested in these activities.

Montana Teacher-Librarians

To keep up to date on information, professional learning, and resources for school library programs and teacher-librarians, subscribe to the Montana Teacher-Librarian newsletter.  You can look at past issues on the Montana Teacher-Librarian website. The August 2016 issue includes information about the Ebsco contract status and contact information for magazine/reference database vendors. Please watch this video excerpt from the Legislative Audit Committee meeting on June 17, 2016, for State Librarian Jennie Stapp’s reply to a question from a state legislator about the coal severance tax funding reductions and their impact on library resources.

The Billings Gazette published an article on June 3 related to this issue – “Libraries, students to lose research databases as tax revenue falls.”

School Library Journal also covered this issue in a June 27 article entitled “Montana School Librarians Fight to Keep Database Subscription.”

Join Colet Bartow for a new series of monthly online PLCs to learn about hot topics and trends in the school library world.  You can still access and get renewal units for the past two series by enrolling in the Digital Blast courses on the Hub!

For more information, contact Colet Bartow, 4064443583

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Educational Opportunity and Equity Division

Schoolwide Title I Plans

Title I Schoolwide Plan updates were due May 27, 2016.  Districts which have schools that have not completed the update will have their Egrants application rejected until the plans have been done.  Please contact the Title I Unit for more information.

For more information, contact Shawna Pieske, 4064445660

Parental Notification Letters 2016-17

Transition Guidance from the U.S. Department of Education (USED)  provides relief from many of the parental notifications related to Adequate Yearly Progress and Improvement Status.  Listed below are some of the most important parental notifications that have been sent out in past years, and whether or not those letters will have to be sent out this year.  Please remember that all parental involvement notifications are hosted on the Trans ACT website at  The OPI website does not host these letters, but we do have a link to the Trans ACT site on the OPI Title I, Part A web page  Each district has an account at TransACT which has been paid for by the OPI.  All districts need to do is login and create an account to access the forms.  If your district already has an account, all you need to do is login.

Annual Parent Notice, Right to Request Teacher Qualifications (NCLB-A1)            Required

Notice of Teacher Status (NCLB-A4)                                                                     No longer required

Annual Verification of Highly Qualified Staff Requirements (NCLB-A5)                 No longer required

Status of School AYP Progress (NCLB-C1a)                                                           No longer required

District Not Making AYP (NCLB-C4)                                                                      No longer required

Annual Notice of Supplemental Educational Services (NCLB-D1)                           No longer required

School Transfer Option (NCLB-C1c)                                                                      No longer required

Request of School Transfer, Public School Choice (NCLB-E1)                                No longer required

For more information, contact Shawna Pieske, 4064445660

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Health Enhancement and Safety


Free and reduced school meal applications require annual verification. Please remember to start the verification process on October 1 and complete it by November 15. Use the verification activity tracker to keep notes on the process.  A copy of the FNS 742 verification form is available to help you enter the information electronically in CNPweb after your October claim is submitted.

For more information, contact School Nutrition Programs, 406-444-2501

Sudden Cardiac Awareness Month

October is Sudden Cardiac Awareness (SCA) month.  The Sudden Cardiac Awareness Foundation has K-12 school-related resources and information available at that are geared toward childhood SCA.

For more information, contact Janet Trethewey, 406.444.0442

New Health Enhancement Standards Available

In July, new 2016 Health Enhancement Standards were adopted by the Board of Public Education.  The two-and-a-half year process recognizes topics and technology that have evolved since the last writing of the Health Enhancement Standards in 1999.  The Health Enhancement Matrix displays the 8 health education and 5 physical education standards along with their K-12 progression of performance indicators.  In addition, the Health Enhancement Curriculum Guide will assist with curriculum development at the district level and provides a framework for what may be taught within the K-12 curriculum of both health and physical education.  A hardcopy of the Health Enhancement Curriculum Guide has been sent to each school's health enhancement teacher.  

For more information, contact Susan Court, 406.444.3178

Celebrate Montana Teen Driver Safety Day on October 18 and Everyday

Montana Teen Driver Safety Day is the third Tuesday in October during National Teen Driver Safety Week. Proclaimed by the Montana State Legislature in 2009 at the urging of students from Belt High School, its mission is to bring Montana teens, community leaders, educators, and parents together to prevent young driver crashes, the leading cause of death for teens.

How is your school district celebrating teen driver safety?  Visit the Traffic Education webpage for ideas and resources to highlight the importance of driving focused, alert and buckled up.   

Download the Fall 2016 Montana Roundabout with Teen Driver Safety Day ideas, Plan2Live and Vision Zero Initiative resources from the MT Department of Transportation, Peer-to-Peer Traffic Safety Program grants, and best practices for Traffic Education Programs.   

For the latest Traffic Ed news, sign up to receive the OPI’s Teen Driver Safety e-news via email, sent out weekly in October and then monthly throughout the year.

Share your Teen Driver Safety Day celebration with us! Send us a quick email to let us know what you are doing or if you need assistance. 

For more information, contact Patti Borneman, 406-444-4432

2017 Youth Risk Behavior Survey Registration

Registration packets for the 2017 Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) will be mailed to district superintendents for receipt in schools by October 3, 2016.  The YRBS is a self-reporting student survey of health risk behaviors associated with unintentional injury and violence, tobacco use, alcohol and other drug use, sexual behaviors, nutrition and dietary behaviors, and physical activity.  The data is needed by school, community, county and state health interests for the delivery of topics addressing the health needs of young people.  Now in its 25th year, the YRBS is administered by over 95 percent of Montana middle and high schools.  For your school's 2015 YRBS results click on School-Specific Data.  The 2017 YRBS will be conducted in late February 2017; the registration deadline is November 30, 2016.

For more information, contact Susan Court, 406.444.3178

HealthierUS School Challenge: Smarter Lunchrooms Award Regional Workshops

  • Want to learn more about applying for a HealthierUS School Challenge: Smarter Lunchrooms Award and tips for a successful application? 
  • Are you interested in creating a Smarter Lunchroom to nudge students to make healthy choices? 
  • Is it time to update your school wellness policy and recharge your school wellness committee? 

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, Montana Team Nutrition invites you to attend a Gearing up for a HealthierUS School Challenge: Smarter Lunchrooms Award workshop!  This training is appropriate for school food service managers, health enhancement teachers, administrators, school wellness committee members, school nurses, and parents.  Schools are encouraged to bring a team of at least 2 people if possible.  This free 2-hour workshop will count towards Professional Standards training hours for Food Service Program Directors, Managers and Staff.  OPI continuing education credit will be available upon request. 


Dates and locations:

October 3, 2016 from 2:00 -4:00 pm in Glendive
November 1, 2016 from 2:00 – 4:00 pm in Kalispell
November 3, 2016 from 2:00 -4:00 pm in Billings

Register:, under the Training Opportunities tab.

For more information, contact Molly Stenberg, 406-994-7217

Serving Up Success- Standardized Recipes Regional Workshops for Schools

Using standardized recipes can save time and money in school and child care programs.  This workshop will teach the basics of creating and working with standardized recipes.  Learn to size recipes to specific yields and how to modify recipes with simple calculations.  Participants will practice developing standardized recipes for their own use.  Learn how to create, use and find standardized recipes to make your job easier.

This workshop provides 2 hours of continuing education for schools (Professional Standards) and childcare staff (approved by the Montana Early Childhood Project).

Dates and locations:

October 11, 2016 from 6:00 – 8:00 pm in Polson
November 1, 2016 from 2:00 – 4:00 pm in Glendive

Registration information for each workshop is located here:, under the Training Opportunities tab.

For more information, contact Molly Stenberg, 406-994-7217

School Food Safety HACCP Plan and new Montana Food Code workshop

Montana Team Nutrition staff and Registered Sanitarians from Yellowstone County invite school food service staff to participate in a half day School Food Safety training.  4 hours of Professional Standards approved training hours will be provided.  (Codes 2610 and 2630.)

Get started and/or update your School Food Safety HACCP Plan from 8:00 – 10:00 am. The class is intended for School Food Service Managers who are responsible for HACCP implementation.  This free professional development workshop will provide participants with the materials and expertise to develop a School Food Safety HACCP plan.  All participants must be ServSafe certified (8-hour course taken within the last 5 years) prior to taking this HACCP class. 

What Schools Need to Know about the New 2013 Montana Food Code from 10:00 – 12:00 pm.  Learn what’s new, what pertains to schools and how schools can follow these new rules.  Registered Sanitarians will allow plenty of time for questions!

Registration information for each workshop is located here:, under the Training Opportunities tab.

For more information, contact Molly Stenberg, 406-994-7217

Free and reduced lunch applications

Free and reduced lunch applications from SY15-16 can be used for meal eligibility in SY16-17 for thirty operating (school) days.  If a household does not submit a new application, remember to change student meal eligibility to paid and notify the household of the change. Read more in the eligibility manual.

For more information, contact School Nutrition Programs, 406-444-2501

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Measurement and Accountability

AIM Announcements September, 2016

OPI Regional AIM Montana Edition NEW USER Training -  September 26-29, 2016

This is intended for those districts that don’t use Infinite Campus as their primary student information system. It is targeted to new users, with a couple of items at the end of the day for advanced users.

The training will run from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.. To see a draft agenda, click HERE.

To register, click HERE.

Monday September 26th:  Missoula School District - Limited to 30
Big Sky High School
3100 South Avenue West

Tuesday September 27th: Helena – Office of Public Instruction - Limited to 14
Training Room, 1227 11th Ave

Wednesday September 28th: Lockwood - Limited to 32
Lockwood Primary Building
1932 US HWY 87 E

Thursday September 29th: Glasgow - Limited to 20
Glasgow Middle School
11 Lasar Drive

AIM Data Collections-Fall 2016

08/15/16 – 10/7/16 -- Previous Year Wrap-up and New Year Preparation

09/06/16 – 10/14/16 -- Previous Year Dropout, Graduate and Cohort Certification

10/01/16 – 12/31/16 -- Fall Career and Technical Education (CTE)

10/03/16 – 10/14/16 -- Fall Count: Enrollment, Aggregate Hours & Count Date Absences

10/03/16 – 10/28/16 -- Fall Program Participation

User guides are continually being updated and made available on the OPI AIM Website.

For more information, contact OPI AIM Help Desk, 406-444-3495

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School Finance

Changes to FY16 Trustess Financial Summary

If you find a material coding error on your FY2015-16 Trustees Financial Summary, you may submit a revision to Steve Hamel in the School Finance Division. As provided in 10.10.504(6), Administrative Rules of Montana, changes to the FY2015-16 Trustees Financial Summary are limited to:

  • Coding revisions between revenue and expenditure line items provided no change occurs in the fund balance of the budgeted funds, and…
  • Revisions in the balance sheet accounts provided no change occurs in the fund balance of the budgeted funds.

The Office of Public Instruction cannot process TFS changes that affect the fund balance in a budgeted fund because fund balance is carried forward to the FY2016-17 budget, and a change in fund balance may impact the number of mills already levied in the fund.

Revisions should be submitted to Steve Hamel by following these procedures:

  1. Photocopy the original page of the Trustees Financial summary with amounts to be revised crossed out and the correct amount written above or beside it.
  2. When sending balance sheet account revisions, please also send any expenditure and revenue line item changes that correlate with such changes. The fund balance on the balance sheet should equal the ending fund balance shown on the statement of revenues, expenditures and changes in fund balance report after the revisions are made.
  3. Change any sub-totals and totals that will be affected.
  4. Sign, or initial, and date any sheets you may be sending.
  5. Scan and e-mail the revisions to OR fax the revisions to Steve at (406) 444-0509 OR mail them to P.O. Box 202501, Helena MT 59620-2501. The new deadline for submitting changes to the trustees financial summary is December 10.  That being said, December 10 is a Saturday this year so changes will be accepted on Monday, December 12.

Note that immaterial line item coding changes that affect fund balance in the budgeted funds for FY2015-16 must be reported as a prior period adjustment on the Trustees Financial Summary for the current year (FY2016-17). The district may need to adopt a budget amendment for the current year to record a prior period expenditure adjustment in a budgeted fund.

For more information, contact Steve Hamel, (406)444-0783

TR-4 Individual Contracts

By October 1, the county superintendent must electronically acknowledge receipt of all individual transportation contracts and electronically authorize individual transportation contracts which the county transportation committee has approved the increased payments due to isolation. (ARM 10.7.101)

For more information, contact Donell Rosenthal, 406-444-3024

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Other Education News

Award for Aspirations in Computing

The NCWIT (National Center for Women and Information Technology) is in it's fifth year of sponsoring the NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing  for high school girls interested in technology and computing. There is also a MONTANA contest.  You can submit applications through November 7, 2016 at:

Any interested female high school student must fill in the on-line application, and get a parent and a school official to approve it to be entered into both the national and Montana contests.

Montana has had winners from high schools in Anaconda, Arlee, Beaverhead County, Bozeman, Cascade, Cut Bank, Helena Capital, Helena High, Missoula Big Sky, Missoula Sentinel, Noxon, Park County and Whitefish High School.  We hope your school will be represented on the winners list this year. 

We are looking forward to recognizing Montana's talent, and hope you will encourage students to apply. Here are some tools to help in the application process:

Application Guide

Parent Approval Guide

Endorsement Guide


P.S. There also is a Montana educator award (with $1,000 for professional development) given each year. Teachers can apply here:

For more information, contact Steve Harper, 447-4466

Letters about Literature

Guidelines for Letters About Literature, a national competition that invites students to submit letters written to authors, are now posted at Students in grades 4-12 can submit letters to the competition; there will be state and national winners. LAL is a great way to get students engaged in literature, and the Library of Congress provides schools with a teaching guide  Students can enter themselves (or teachers can send in their submissions) using these guidelines from the LAL site. Entry deadline for grades 9-12 is December 2, 2016. Entry deadline for grades 4-8 is January 9, 2017.

For more information, contact Sarah Kahn, 243-6022

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