Superintendent's Memo #088-09
COMMONWEALTH of VIRGINIA
Department of Education
April 3, 2009
TO: Division Superintendents
FROM: Patricia I. Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction
SUBJECT: Guidance on the Disposition of Equipment and Materials in Nonpublic Schools Purchased with Title V, Part A, Innovative Program Funds
This memorandum is intended to provide guidance to school divisions regarding the disposition of equipment and materials in nonpublic schools purchased with Title V, Part A, funds that are housed in nonpublic schools since there is no FY 2009 funding and LEA programs are about to be discontinued as remaining funding is exhausted. The fiscal year (FY) 2007 funds that Virginia school divisions previously received under Title V, Part A, of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act on July 1, 2007, remain available for obligation through September 30, 2009. After that time, unless Congress makes an additional appropriation, there will be no funding available for Title V, Part A, and no flexibility to transfer funds to that program.
Under the Title V, Part A, program, school divisions are responsible for providing equitable services for the benefit of nonpublic school students. The program statute and the Education Department General Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) require that the school division maintain title to, and administrative control over, any materials and equipment acquired with program funds for the purpose of providing Title V, Part A, services to nonpublic school students (20 US.c. § 7217a(c)(1); 34 CFR § 76.661). The United States Department of Education (USED) has identified two options that school divisions may use concerning the materials and equipment purchased with Title V, Part A, funds that are housed in private schools for use by private school students and teachers. Both of the options described below are consistent with all applicable statutory and regulatory requirements governing the program. Prior to selecting an option, the school division must engage in timely and meaningful consultation with private school officials in order to ensure that the needs of private school students and teachers have been adequately addressed.
- The school division may allow materials and equipment to remain in the nonpublic school for the benefit of the school’s students under a continuing activity authorized by Title V, Part A, (even though that activity will no longer be funded under Title V, Part A). Under those circumstances the materials and equipment must be used for the current Title V, Part A, purposes.
- If there is no continuing Title V, Part A, activity, the equipment may be used for other activities currently or previously supported by the federal government that the school division is implementing for the benefit of the nonpublic school’s students, noting that USED programs should be given priority (34 CFR § 80.32(c).
- In either instance, if the school division materials and equipment remain in a nonpublic school, the school division retains the responsibility to keep title to, and maintain administrative control over, the materials and equipment despite the absence of Title V, Part A, funds.
- The school division must keep the materials and equipment in inventory and monitor its use.
- The school division should obtain from the appropriate private school official a written assurance that equipment and materials placed in the private school will be used only for secular, neutral, and non-ideological purposes; that private school personnel will supplement, and in no case supplant, the equipment and materials that, in the absence of the Title V, Part A, program, would have been made available for the participating students.
- The school division may dispose of the equipment placed in nonpublic schools. Under EDGAR (34 CFR § 80.32(e)), if the equipment is no longer needed for the current project or another federal program and its per unit fair market value is less than $5,000, the school division may retain, sell, or otherwise dispose of the equipment. EDGAR at 34 CFR § 80.32(e) also provides instructions if the fair market value is more than $5,000.
- Under this option, a school division could sell some or all of the materials or equipment to a nonpublic school for its fair market value. As a result, the school division would no longer have the responsibility for administrative control and proper use requirements over the materials and equipment. If, in consultation with the private school officials, the school division chooses this option, it must develop a method for determining fair market value.
Before making any final decisions regarding the use or disposal of equipment that has been placed in private schools under the Title V, Part A, program, the school division must consult with private school officials.
If you have questions or require additional information, please contact Diane Jay, associate director, Office of Program Administration and Accountability, via e-mail at Diane.Jay@doe.virginia.gov or by telephone at (804) 225-2905.
PIW / DLJ / dj