MDE Weekly Superintendent Mail

TO: Superintendents, Districts, Charter Schools, Child Nutrition Program, Cooperatives

FROM: Jessie Montano, Deputy Commissioner

SUBJECT: Federal Shutdown

DATE: October 4, 2013

As you are aware, on October 1, large portions of the federal government were shut down due to a budget impasse in the U.S. Congress. As a result, some services that rely on federal funding may be impacted due to an interruption of funding and support from the federal government.

The Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) is committed to providing continuous updates as we assess the potential impacts of the shutdown. As of today, we can provide the following information:

· MDE continues to have access to the accounts for federal education funds.
· SERVS Financial has been reopened so districts may make draws of federal funds.
· Since the education programs administered by MDE are forward funded, MDE will reimburse districts, charter schools and cooperatives for any eligible expenditures for SFY 2014, unless unforeseen circumstances, such as debt ceiling limitation cause an interruption of funds from the federal government to MDE.
· MDE will notify districts, charter schools and cooperatives with as much lead time possible for any changes that affect their ability to draw funds through SERVS Financial.
· For the Child Nutrition programs: All meal claims reimbursements for FFY 2013 will be paid. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) at this time has secured funds for the first 10 days of federal fiscal year 2014 for meal claims reimbursements that started October 1, 2013. USDA anticipates additional resources will be available to reimburse all of FFY 2014 program claims once an appropriation is enacted. As of today, USDA is encouraging all local Child Nutrition programs to continue business as usual.

Moving forward, we will continue to monitor potential impacts to programs, schools and MDE staff. We will continue to provide updates as they are available and remain hopeful that this will be a very short-term situation.