Frequently Asked Questions
Q. 1. Where can I find information about the high school summer school program?
A. 1. Visit https://www.nd.gov/dpi/SchoolStaff/SAO/summer/ for North Dakota Administrative Code (NDAC), projected state aid payments, and other important information relating to the high school summer school program. Specific course codes and course descriptions can be found in the Course Codes and Descriptions.
If you have specific questions regarding high school summer school programs, please contact the School Approval & Opportunity Unit at (701) 328-2317 or (701) 328-4571.
Q.2. How does a program qualify for state aid?
A.2. In order for a district to qualify to receive state aid for summer school programming, the Summer School Application and the Summer School Licensed Personnel (MIS03) reports on STARS must be completed and approved BEFORE the program can begin. Applications must be submitted for review 15 days prior to the start of the program. (NDAC 67-20-01-01)
Q.3. Who can teach in a high school summer school program?
A.3. North Dakota Century Code (NDCC) states that only individuals holding a North Dakota educator’s professional license for the grade level and content area of instruction may teach a high school summer school program (NDCC 15.1-13-17, NDCC 15.1-18-03, and NDAC 67-20-01-03). There is an exception to this regulation for courses being offered under the postsecondary enrollment options statute. (NDCC 15.1-25)
Q.4. What courses may be taught in a high school summer school program?
A.4. All courses being taught and being paid through state aid must receive prior approval from the Department of Public Instruction. The course must be part of the regular school program. If the course is not part of the regular school program, it must be adopted by the school board and must be made available to all high school students. (NDAC 67-20-01-03)
Q.5. When can summer school courses be held?
A.5. Summer school classes must be conducted between the closing date of the regular school term and the beginning date of the next regular school term. (NDAC 67-20-01-04)
Q.6. How many students can participate in a high school summer school program course?
A.6. As a best practice, it is recommended that no more than 30 students should be enrolled in each class. The anticipated enrollment is reported on the STARS Summer School Licensed Personnel (MIS03) report and can be verified by a class roster if necessary.
Q.7. How are student grade levels determined?
A.7. Students participating in high school summer school programs are to be reported in the grade that they have been promoted to in the fall. (NDAC 67-20-01-05) Outlined below are examples to help clarify this:
- If a student was in grade 9 in the school year that just ended and has successfully completed that grade, the student has been promoted to grade 10, that student must be enrolled in a high school summer school program.
- If a student was in grade 9 in the school year that just ended but the school requires the student’s participation and successful completion of a summer course in order for the student to be promoted to grade 10, that student is still considered to be in grade 9.
Please note: Districts must report ALL summer school students, grades 9-12, under the grade level in which they have been promoted to in the fall. This is the grade level that will be reported in order to receive state aid payments.
Q.8. Will the summer school program be monitored?
A.8. Yes, the Department of Public Instruction may monitor summer programs by reviewing documentation and may also conduct on-site visitations, as necessary. (NDAC 67-20-01-06)
Q.9. May a student take a summer school course from another school district?
A.9. Yes; however, the two school districts must complete and concur on a tuition agreement. (NDAC 67-20-01-07)
Q.10. Can students from private schools attend the district’s state funded summer school program? If so, would we receive summer school state aid for their attendance?
A.10. Yes, as long as the private school student is a resident of that district. These private school children essentially become public school children for the summer. Whom ever does the district’s summer school reporting will want to be sure to exit code the private school children as “transferred within the district” at the end of the summer school session. If they are not a resident of the district, a tuition agreement between the two districts would need to be established.
Q.11. What are a school’s responsibilities if there are changes after the school’s application has been submitted or approved?
A.11. The school must submit an amended application to the School Approval & Opportunity Unit. The amended application must provide the same type of information as is required on the original application.
It is not uncommon for the number of students who actually enroll in a course to vary somewhat from the number identified on the school’s original application. Any increases that result in the employment of additional personnel must be reported as an amendment to the application. Additionally, staff would need to be reported on the Summer School Licensed Personnel (MIS03) report on STARS.
The program must provide the required hours of actual instructional time to qualify for state aid. If unforeseen circumstances occur (such as the school building being closed for emergency reasons or illness of the instructor), the instructional time must be made up and the Department of Public Instruction must be notified immediately of the change.
Please note: Only approved courses and programs are eligible to receive state aid payment. If changes are made (i.e., additional staffing, additional courses) and not approved by the Department of Public Instruction, state aid payment for the course will not be made.
Q.12. How many hours of instruction are necessary for a high school summer school program to qualify for state aid?
A.12. NDCC 15.1-21-03 outlines the requirements for the receipt of high school credit units indicating that each full credit must consist of at least 120 clock hours of instruction; 60 clock hours of instruction for one-half credit; and 30 clock hours of instruction for one-quarter credit, with the exception that:
- Science and vocational courses require 150 clock hours of instruction for each credit; 75 clock hours of instruction for one-half credit; and 37.5 clock hours of instruction for one-quarter credit.
- Driver education courses, see Question 16 below. (NDAC 67-20-01-08)
Q.13. What fees can schools legally charge for summer school?
A.13. Only those fees specifically allowed in NDCC 15.1-09-36 can legally be charged for summer school.
Q.14. How or when can a school’s summer school data be submitted for state aid payment?
A.14. To receive state aid payment for the summer program, the school must submit the summer school data to the Department of Public Instruction, Office of School Finance, via the Summer School Enrollment report on STARS at the close of the program. (NDAC 67-20-01-08). If you have questions regarding the submission of summer school data, please contact Don Williams in the Office of School Finance at (701) 328-2236.
Q.15. How many hours of instruction are required for driver education?
A.15. Driver education must follow requirements within two sections of state law governing two different state departments. Classroom instruction for driver education must consist of a minimum of 30 clock hours in order for students to receive one-quarter credit. NDAC 37-03-04 for the Department of Transportation requires driver education programs to also include six hours of behind-the-wheel instruction AND six hours of observational instruction while in the vehicle. The behind-the-wheel and observation is in addition to 30 hours of classroom instruction. (NDAC 67-20-01-08)
All instructional hours (30 hours classroom + 6 hours behind-the-wheel + 6 hours observation) must be fulfilled for a school to be eligible to receive state aid payment.
Q.16. How are student grade levels determined for driver education?
A.16. Students participating in driver education are to be reported in the grade that they have been promoted to in the fall. (NDAC 67-20-01-05) Outlined below are examples to help clarify this:
- If a student was in grade 8 in the school year that just ended and has successfully completed that grade, the student has been promoted to grade 9, that student must be enrolled in a high school (Grades 9-12) summer school program for driver education. Additionally, this student MUST be at least 14 years of age before taking the behind-the-wheel portion of the course.
Please note: State aid payments for driver education are made only if students are:
- In grade 9 (minimum)
- Complete both Driver Education Classroom instruction AND Behind-the-Wheel/Observation instruction
Q.17. When can credit be issued for driver education?
A.17. In order to issue credit for driver education, students must have successfully completed:
- Grade 8 (be promoted to grade 9)
- Complete both Driver Education Classroom instruction (30 hours minimum) AND Behind-the-Wheel (6 hours minimum)/Observation (6 hours minimum) instruction.
Q.18. Are there age requirements for participation in Driver Education Classroom instruction or Behind-the-Wheel/Observation instruction?
A.18. Students can take the classroom portion of the driver and traffic safety education class as early as eighth grade. The behind-the-wheel portion, however, can be given only to students who are at least 14 years of age. It is strongly recommended that students have completed a minimum of 4 hours of classroom instruction in the rules of the road prior to any behind-the-wheel instruction.
Q.19. Can a student who loses his/her drivers license retake driver education?
A.19. A student who loses his or her license for traffic violations must retake the driver education course (NDCC 39-06-01.1); however, the school may not claim state aid for that student when the course is retaken. A fee for the course is allowed under NDCC 15.1-09-36.
Q.20. How can driver education completion certificates be obtained?
A.20. The certificate of completion confirms that the student has successfully completed the driver and traffic safety education program course. This is an official document that must be presented to the driver examiner at the time of the road test.
Driver education completion certificates are sent to the school administrators in the spring of every year or can be obtained by contacting the Safety Division at the ND Department of Transportation at (701) 328-4354.