Mandated Services Aid/Comprehensive Attendance Policy (MSA-CAP)
Mandated Services Aid (MSA) is a New York State funded reimbursement program for religious and independent schools. The schools receive reimbursement for the state mandates that they have met in the prior school year (July 1 to June 30). In order to receive reimbursement, the school must have met the requirements of the mandate and have documentation to support it. The reimbursement request, or claim, must be processed via our online system. A full listing of the mandates and a brief explanation of each one follows this introduction.
Many of the mandates are met by reporting information in a timely fashion to the Department itself. For example, the Basic Educational Data Systems (BEDS) report, which is due every October, has a twofold purpose for religious and independent schools: it fulfills the requirement of mandate number three and enables a school’s claim to be entered into the processing system for MSA-CAP services. Other mandates, such as Pupil Attendance Reporting (PAR) rely on the school providing the state information relative to the time and effort attributed to complying with the regulation.
Filing for MSA-CAP services is a voluntary process, requiring schools to keep abreast of the changes and notices so that they can properly comply. This can easily be done by having the Chief Financial Officer and MSA Contact keep a current email address on file in the State Education Data Reference File (SEDREF), firstname.lastname@example.org and to check for updates weekly at the Office of Religious and Independent School Support website.
Guidelines, Announcement of Aid and forms for a particular school year are generally released in August of that year but are not due to the State until the following April. The opening of the MSA-CAP online system is dependent on the compilation of testing data and typically does not occur until mid-December. Schools are encouraged to download the guidelines and forms as early as possible to review any changes that may have occurred from the prior year and to have their data ready to enter into the system. While paper claims are still accepted, we encourage schools to learn and use the online system for faster processing and monitoring. Please note that paper claims will need to be processed by Department staff and cannot be entered until such time that the online system is open. Schools are expected to monitor the progress of their own claims once entered in the system.
Religious and Independent schools with questions about completing their claim are encouraged to first read the guidelines and then contact the MSA-CAP office for assistance. Our goal is for all religious and independent schools to file correctly and timely. When visiting the MSA-CAP web page, venture on to the Recordkeeping section. It has a complete listing of material that a school should keep on hand for every claim, and it will help prepare a school in the event of a claim review.
If a school’s claim is flagged for a review, Department staff may ask for additional documentation to substantiate the claim. These reviews are based upon a risk based management approach that the office staff must conduct in response to an audit of the MSA-CAP program by the New York State Comptroller. The goal of the review is not meant to be intrusive or to tell the administration how to run their school, but to ensure claims are filed accurately. A review may result in a loss, a gain, or no change at all in the expected reimbursement. Schools are expected to respond within a reasonable time frame to questions from staff, and are encouraged to ask follow-up questions if there is any confusion on what is being requested. Refusals or ignoring attempts by reviewers to ask questions will result in little progress; resolving issues promptly will result in more timely payments.
There are currently sixteen mandates available for reimbursement. After this introduction, we will be explaining these currently available mandates. The Announcement of Aid document, normally released in August with the new MSA-CAP claim forms, highlights changes/updates to the MSA-CAP program.
Questions regarding eligibility for MSA-CAP or a particular mandate can be directed to the MSA-CAP Office at 518-474-3936 or by email. A listing of the mandates which are currently available, as well as a brief summary of the mandate follows. By clicking on the underlined title of each mandate, more information concerning the reporting requirement, staff roles, and claim reimbursement can be found.
Mandates Currently Included in Mandated Services Reimbursement are:
Pupil Attendance Report (PAR): Attendance must be recorded once daily, summarized periodically, and maintained on file by the school. PAR applies to grades Kindergarten through 12th grade only. Do not include enrollment of nursery school or Pre-K students and teachers, post graduate students or pupils with disabilities who are enrolled pursuant to a contract with a public-school district or the New York State Education Department. Kindergarten students are defined as those children who are or turn five years of age by December 31 of the school year in question.
Elementary and Intermediate Assessment in English Language Arts and Math (EIA): Grades 3 through 8 Math and English Language Arts (ELA) tests must be administered and reported to the New York State Education Department’s Office of Information and Reporting Services through a contract with a Regional Information Center (RIC) for scanning and reporting in the Student Repository System (SIRS). Religious and independent schools must adhere to the required deadlines and follow the RIC’s conditions for acceptance of material to have their scores reported and reimbursed. Proof of mailing should be maintained by the school, as well as a record of the students’ scores and a copy of answer sheets. (Printing costs are reimbursed at the rate of $86 per grade for those schools that do not have their tests graded by a Regional Scoring Center.) The website for Office of State Assessment will contain the schedules and information about the administration of these tests.
Basic Educational Data Systems (BEDS): Basic school, staff and pupil information must be reviewed and updated, and the BEDS Report of religious and independent schools must be filed with NYSED by the established deadline in order to receive Mandated Services reimbursement. For more information about this mandate go to the BEDS Enrollment Website. Include only those teachers that participated in Pupil Attendance Reporting (PAR). Do not include Pre-K teachers in your claim.
Regents Examinations (RE): Regents exams must be administered, scored, the results interpreted, and reported in level 0 of SIRS. Religious and independent schools that administer any of the Regents Examinations must contract for data collection, scanning, and reporting services with a RIC. Religious and independent schools must adhere to the required deadlines and follow the RIC’s conditions for acceptance of material to have their scores reported and reimbursed. Proof of mailing should be maintained by the school, as well as a record of the students’ scores and a copy of answer sheets. Please note that the online system will populate your Regents counts with the number of exams that your RIC reports to the State which does not include retesting of students. Schools are eligible to receive reimbursement for all tests administered in accordance with all rules, including retesting, so the school should claim any retests and be prepared to submit supporting documentation if requested. Reporting correctly in Level 0 will accomplish this task.
Do not claim examination results for students enrolled in other schools, even if the students attended class and/or were tested in the religious and/or independent school. The principal of the school where the student is enrolled is responsible for reporting the examination score and the school where the student is enrolled receives the mandated services aid for the examinations. Please note that the administration of the Second Language Proficiency (SLP) exam is not a reimbursable expense. The website for the Office of State Assessment will contain the schedules and information about the administration of these tests.
Regents Competency Testing Program (RCTP) - No Longer Offered: The Regents Competency Test are no longer offered by New York State Education Department, so we cannot accept reimbursement claims for the administration of these test after the 2018-19 school year. They were available in August 2018 only and were administered to students who have completed the unit of study requirements specified under “Admission Requirements” in Section One of the School Administrator’s Manual.
Calculator Expense (CE): The costs of four function or scientific calculators used in the administration of certain math and science tests will be reimbursed at the flat rate of $15 per calculator. These tests include Grade 6, 7 and 8 Math, Living Environment, Chemistry, Earth Science and Physics. Schools may choose either a four-function calculator with square root or a scientific calculator for Grade 6. Grades 7 and 8 must have scientific calculators for the revised math tests. Reimbursement for the costs of graphing calculators will be at the flat rate up to $110 per calculator. Pupils administered an Algebra I, Algebra II, or Geometry Regents Exam must be provided the use of a graphing calculator without symbol manipulation. The calculators are the property of the school and should be loaned to the students. Schools must maintain an inventory record of the calculators. Purchase documentation and inventory records must be maintained and available upon request.
Registration of High School (RHS). (ONLY APPLICABLE ONCE): The high school registration program involves the submission of an Application for Religious and Independent Secondary School Registration, review of data concerning student achievement, and a visit from the Office of Religious and Independent School Support. Upon the completion of the aforementioned process, the Office of Religious and Independent School Support recommends registration status. A claim should be made for the school year that the application process was completed. Go to the Office of Religious and Independent School Support website for more information.
State School Immunization Program (SSIP): (Note: only applicable to New York City, Rochester, and Buffalo). The new appropriation limits participation in this program to schools that have immunization records on file with the New York State Department of Health. Religious and independent schools must develop and enforce a school immunization program. Such immunization programs shall include the collection, verification, and completion of the individual pupil immunization records. The school must complete and return the New York State Annual School Immunization Survey Summary Form by the required deadline. New York City schools must send the form to the NYC Health Department & Mental Hygiene Immunization Program; all other eligible schools must send the form to the NYS Department of Health Immunization Program. New York City and State Health Department audits must be completed when required. Schools may not claim Pre-K students, nor a greater amount of students than claimed in enrollment.
Documentation of Integration of Required Instruction in 7th and 8th Grade (DIRI): The requirements for technology education, home and career skills, and library and information skills may be met by the integration of the State learning standards of such subjects into other courses in accordance with the criteria found in Section 100.4(2) of the Commissioner’s Regulations. The religious and/or independent school must document the manner in which it has implemented the regulations and the documentation must be kept on file in the school and be readily accessible. Only the 7th and 8th grade teachers participating in fulfillment of the mandate should be included.
Graduation Report for Religious and Independent Schools (HSGR) grade 12 only: Religious and independent schools are now responsible for reporting all students who were awarded a local or Regents diploma, Career Development & Occupational Studies Commencement Credentials or Skills & Achievement Commencement Credential in the Student Information Repository System (SIRS). Graduation Reporting must be completed with your local RIC and filed by the end of August annually. Information about the graduation report is available on the Information Reporting Services website.
Grade Four Science Test (GFST): The Grade Four Elementary-Level Science Test must be administered and reported to the New York State Education Department’s Office of Information and Reporting Services through a contract with a Regional Information Center (RIC) for scanning and reporting in the Student Repository System (SIRS). Religious and independent schools must adhere to the required deadlines and follow the RIC’s conditions for acceptance of material to have their scores reported and reimbursed. Proof of mailing should be maintained by the school, as well as a record of the students’ scores and a copy of answer sheets. The Office of State Assessment website will contain the schedules and information about the administration of these tests.
Expenditure for Travel Costs to Examination Storage Sites (TSS): Some schools are required to pick up secure examinations being stored at a neutral site. A copy of an Approved Program Test Storage Plan must be filed with the New York State Education Department. (Note: All examinations included in the mandates are secure examinations.)
New York State Scholarships for Academic Excellence Application (SAE): The mandate relates to submission of the Scholarships for Academic Excellence Nomination Summary Form, listing the nominee(s) and the individual student application forms. The selection criteria for nominees for the Scholarships for Academic Excellence must be published and made available to students at the beginning of the school year. A high school must use uniform criteria for the selection of scholarship nominees, applicable to all competing students. The criteria must be in accordance with the requirements and timelines established by the New York State Education Department’s Office of K-16 Initiatives and Access Programs. More information is available at Office of K-16 Initiatives and Access Programs Website.
Grade Eight Science Test (GEST): The Grade Eight Science Test must be administered and reported to the New York State Education Department’s Office of Information and Reporting Services through a contract with a Regional Information Center (RIC) for scanning and reporting in the Student Repository System. Non-public schools must adhere to the required deadlines and follow the RIC’s conditions for acceptance of material in order to have their scores reported and reimbursed. Proof of mailing should be maintained by the school, as well as a record of the students’ scores and a copy of answer sheets. The website for the Office of State Assessment will contain the schedules and information about the administration of these tests.
REMOVED – Grade Eight Social Studies Test (GESST) – No Longer Offered
REMOVED – Grade Five Social Studies Test (GFSST) – No Longer Offered
Pesticide Neighbor Notification (PNN): The School Pesticide Neighbor Notification Law requires all Non-public schools to notify parents and interested parties prior to pesticide applications in instructional and administrative buildings and grounds, as well as playgrounds and athletic fields. The school must establish written pesticide notification procedures according to the provisions outlined in Section 155.24 of Commissioner’s Regulations. The procedures and a record of the notice(s) must be kept on file locally.
New York State English as a Second Language Achievement Test (NYSESLAT): The NYSESLAT is designed specifically for limited English proficient (LEP) students to determine proficiency in the English language. The New York State English as a Second Language Achievement Test must be administered according to the rules, regulations and guidelines issued by the New York State Education Department. Student answer sheets must be sent to the RIC or large city scoring Center for scoring by the required deadline of May 28, 2022. Proof of mailing should be maintained by the school. The signed and dated Examination Storage Certificate, the Deputy Proctor Certificate and the Exam Scoring Certificate must be kept on file locally. Please note that if only teachers employed by the public school perform the teacher functions for the NYSESLAT exam, schools may only claim the Administrative and Support functions for reimbursement.
NYSITELL New York State Identification Test for English Language Learners (NYSITELL): The NYSITELL replaces the Language Assessment Battery-Revised (LAB-R) as the approved means of initially identifying ELLs, in New York State. The purpose of the NYSITELL is to assess the English Language proficiency of new entrants whose home language is a language other than English, as indicated on the Home Language Questionnaire. It is used to determine if the student needs bilingual and/or ESL services. NYSITELL must be administered in accordance with the rules, regulations and guidelines issued by the New York State Education Department. Student answer sheets must be sent to the RIC or large city Scoring Center for scoring and reporting to the Department.
Note: Teachers who administer the NYSESLAT and/or NYSITELL exam should have a “highly qualified background”, as noted by the NYS Department of Education’s Office of Bilingual Education. “A highly qualified background” is defined as teachers certified in English as a Second Language, specialized in Special Education or Reading Teachers, and some English Language Arts teachers. In order to enhance the appropriate administration of this test, schools may wish to access trainings provided by the Regional Bilingual Education Resource Network (RBERN), or by any educational entities delegated by either RBERN or the Office of Bilingual Education to be comparable. Schools are encouraged to contact either the New York City Office of English Language Learners or the Office of Bilingual Education for more information.
RIC and Scoring Center: The 3rd through 8th grade tests may be scored by Regional Scoring Centers. (Note: If your tests are graded by a Scoring Center, no printing costs are separately reimbursed under Mandate 2, EIA.) The cost for this scoring will be reimbursed. The Scoring Center Costs must include only the amount billed by the Scoring Center and paid by the school or a sponsoring organization. All elementary exams, NYSESLAT, NYSITELL and Regents exams require scanning and that the student data be recorded and maintained by a Regional Information Center (RIC). The RIC costs required by these tests and the filing of the High School Graduation Report should be added to those for the Regional Scoring Centers. Documentation on both the scoring and RIC payments must be maintained and accessible upon request.
CAP was promulgated by the Board of Regents for all schools in June, 2002. The attendance policy must encompass the nine points outlined in Commissioner’s Regulations 104.1 (i). All religious and independent schools must have such a policy on file and may be asked to produce the policy during a site visit or claim review.
CAP claims are made at the same time as the MSA claim for a specific year. A school is not eligible for CAP in a particular school year if it has not filed the MSA-CAP claim for that year.
You can claim your school’s MSA-CAP payment by going to NYSED Business Portal Website to log on to the MSA-CAP online system. Use of the online system is the most expeditious process for receiving your MSA-CAP payment. If you choose not to access the online system, please be sure to indicate on the front page of the MSA-1 Certification page that you wish to claim CAP and sign and return an original completed application to the MSA-CAP.
If claiming online, once you have completed your MSA-CAP application and prior to submitting, the following steps must be taken:
- Click on Summary of Expenditures and complete each applicable mandate.
- Certify both MSA and CAP.
- CEO, click on the [Submit Claim] button.
The formula used to calculate CAP reimbursement is as follows:
Teachers K-6 expenses = ([Teachers hourly salaries] x [K-6 enrollment]) x (0.17)
Administrative K-6 expenses = ([Administrative hourly salaries] x [K-6 enrollment]) x (.125)
Support staff K-6 expenses = ([Support staff hourly salaries] x [K-6 enrollment]) x (.125)
Teachers 7-12 expenses = ([Teachers hourly salaries] x [7-12 enrollment]) x (4.13)
Administrative 7-12 expenses = ([Administrative hourly salaries] x [7-12 enrollment]) x (.35)
Support staff 7-12 expenses = ([Support staff hourly salaries] x [7-12 enrollment]) x (.50)