In his first open address to the LA Unified school board since he was rehired as superintendent last week, Ramon Cortines promised accountability, transparency and constant communication.
“I know the buck stops here,” he told the seven members during a brief address that included an update on the district’s flawed student data software program, MiSiS.
Cortines, who got an early start on the job Monday morning and spent the day in intensive meetings with the district’s top leadership, quipped, “I’ve been here two days going on 10 years.”
Then he outlined a series of changes to MiSiS that will be effective immediately.
At the top of the list is a two-month extension to Dec. 1, from the previous deadline, Oct. 23, for schools to submit the number of students enrolled in the free and reduced meal program, which determines the allocation of federal dollars to individual campuses for low-income students.
A school is eligible for Title I money only if at least half of the student body is enrolled in the federal meals program. A school receives even more money per pupil if at least 65 percent of low-income students qualify. When a campus reaches a threshold above 85 percent combined free and reduced lunch it becomes exempt from collecting applications for four years.