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Fall 2017 Initial Information Release for Schools

Fall 2017 Initial Information Release for Schools

Student enrollments in MTDA classes have grown every year since the program was launched in 2010. In each legislative session since, with the exception of the one that just ended, MTDA has requested and received an increase in funding allowing us to meet the demand of increased student enrollments during each two-year period. The funding request for 2017-18 and 2018-19, was based on a conservative projection of an 8% increase in enrollments in each year and was consistent with the prior requests.  As a comparison student enrollment growth, this program year (2016-17) is in the 12% range.  However, for the first time the approved funding for MTDA did not include an increase and as we previously announced the funding for the next two program years (2017-18 and 2018-19) is $660,000 short of the amount that was requested in the budget process. Since the level of funding for MTDA, for the next two years, is the same as the current funding (2015-17) it can be described as flat or frozen.  The result of flat or frozen funding means that for the first time since MTDA was launched student enrollments will not be able to grow. This will require some adjustments to program availability and policies.  Please review the information below carefully, and share with interested and impacted parties.  If you have any questions, please contact our staff via the support desk, support@montanadigitalacademy.org, and we are happy to discuss or setup a follow-up call.

MTDA does not anticipate cost-sharing or charging for Fall 2017 and Spring 2018 services.

The Montana Legislature added rulemaking authority during the 2015 session for MTDA to share costs with schools when our costs to deliver our programming exceed the amount appropriated (see MCA 20-7-1202).  At this time, MTDA does not plan to put cost sharing (i.e. charging fees) into effect for the Fall 2017 or Spring 2018 program semesters.

Deadlines for enrollment requests will change.

For the Fall 2017 original credit program, MTDA will enforce new deadlines in order to plan for our more limited resources.  The Fall 2017 semester starts on Tuesday, September 5, 2017.  Note the following deadlines:

  • Initial course request deadline: Tuesday, August 29, 2017, at 5pm: Formerly our “Guaranteed Enrollment Deadline,”  we request that schools prioritize making ALL enrollment requests before August 29, 2017, at 5pm.  We will section off courses this day and assign teachers.  After this day, enrollment may be closed in any class at any time.
  • Late enrollment deadline: For any open classes, the final enrollment deadline is September 8, 2017 at 5pm.  No enrollment requests will be accepted after the deadline under any circumstances.

For the Fall 2017 credit recovery program, we will open enrollment for orientation on Monday, August 28, 2017.  Content course enrollment opens on Tuesday, September 5, 2017.

Some courses are not available for the 2017-2018 school year.

MTDA has revised its course catalog and decided not to offer some low enrollment courses:

  • Crown of the Continent
  • AP Human Geography
  • Music Theory
  • Math and the Liberal Arts

Please refer to our course lists for available courses for the 2017-2018 school year.

Some courses will have enrollment limits.

Some original credit courses for the 2017-2018 school year will have enrollment limits.  These limits are firm.  The following courses have limited enrollments and are first come, first serve:

  • Criminology
  • Mythology and Folklore
  • Veterinary Science
  • Art History/Appreciation
  • Astronomy
  • Fashion Design/Interior Design
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Sports & Entertainment Marketing
  • Now We’re Cooking: An Introduction to Culinary Arts
  • German I
  • German II
  • Latin I
  • Latin II

In addition, MTDA may need to temporarily limit enrollment in credit recovery courses if our enrollments exceed our caseload limits in specific content areas.

No new courses or programs will be adopted.

MTDA regularly reviews and adopts new courses and programs based on student, teacher, and school district input.  For this biennium (17-18 and 18-19), there will be no new course additions or formats considered or adopted.

Participating schools are expected to help scrutinize enrollments and conserve resources.

MTDA has always run our program under restrictions of finite resources, however, the available resources for the next school year demand that schools take a thoughtful approach to each enrollment.  Please evaluate each student using our existing tools, including the entrance counseling form and online readiness matrix to determine if this program is a good fit for the student.

Slow start, administrative drop, and enrollment restriction policies will be strictly enforced.

As has been policy since our start, MTDA actively monitors enrollments in all programs, and then warn and drop inactive students.  This process will continue, however, there will be less flexibility to continue enrollments where the student is not logging in or making meaningful progress in their course.  In addition, if a student doesn’t successfully complete a course or is dropped due to inactivity, they may be limited in future enrollments.

MLS will be offered this coming year with our original enrollments caps.

The Middle School Multi-Language Sampler will continue as a pilot program for the 17-18 school year with some adjustments. The program will revert to its original maximum enrollment of 500 for the school year (125 enrollments in each of the 2 sessions per semester).

In addition, MTDA will begin enforcing standards on individual student enrollments as it does in its high school program, including dropping students that do not get a good start in their course and limiting future enrollment for students that are not successful.

Program information will be released on August 1, 2017.  Enrollment begins August 21, 2017.  Enrollments are first come, first served.  MTDA cannot hold enrollments.

MLS schools should also carefully review technical requirements for the MLS program.  Schools should not enroll in MLS courses unless students have access to all needed equipment on day one of the course.

 

Montana Digital Academy
Phyllis J. Washington College of Education
The University of Montana
32 Campus Drive – Room 315
Missoula, Montana 59812
Phone: 406-203-1812
Fax: 406-203-1815

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