[Editor’s note: This article has been updated to reflect NEW frequently asked questions from the California Department of Education (CDE).]
On April 23, 2020, Governor Gavin Newsom issued Executive Order N-56-20 focused on easing requirements, because of impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic, for local educational agencies (LEAs) to complete their Local Control and Accountability Plans (LCAPs) for 2020–21. The Executive Order also foreshadowed further actions to “address future deadlines that are not imminent, including certain requirements related to the California School Dashboard.” Lastly, the Executive Order waived requirements related to physical education for the 2019–20 school year.
Under the Executive Order, the deadline for an LEA governing body to adopt their LCAP, the annual update, and the budget overview for parents is extended from July 1, 2020 to December 15, 2020. The deadline for a county superintendent to approve the LCAP is extended until January 14, 2021. In addition, the deadline for a charter school to submit the LCAP to its authorizer and the county superintendent of schools is extended to December 15, 2020.
Notably, the Executive Order also requires LEAs to complete a new report that explains the changes to program offerings that have been made in response to school closures to address the COVID-19 emergency and the major impacts of the closures on students and families. The report must include:
- A description of how the LEA is meeting the needs of low-income students, English learner students, and foster youth
- Steps taken by the LEA to deliver high-quality distance learning, provide school meals, and arrange for supervision of students during school hours
The LEA governing body must adopt the report at the same meeting the annual budget is adopted. School districts and county boards of education must submit the report to the County Superintendent of Schools or the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, respectively, in conjunction with the adopted annual budget, and charter schools must submit the report to their authorizers. Additionally, all LEAs must post the report on their websites. The California Department of Education (CDE) is tasked with developing a form that LEAs may use for the report, but no deadline is stipulated for the CDE to develop the template.
Unrelated to the LCAP provisions, the Executive Order also waived statutory requirements pertaining to physical education. Requirements that set minimum instructional minutes in physical education for grades 1–12 are waived. In addition, the physical fitness performance test for grades 5, 7, and 9 is no longer required for the 2019–20 school year.
Additional information about the 2020-21 budget and LCAP process for LEAs is available in a Frequently Asked Questions page on CDE’s website.