You are currently viewing Student Progress Policy

Minnesota Department of Education
Adult Basic Education
Effective October 1, 2007

Summary and Key Points

Policy Summary: In order to receive ABE services or instruction, eligible students must have an educational goal that aligns with the scope of the Educational Functioning Levels (EFLs) described in the federal ABE accountability system, the National Reporting System (NRS).  The Minnesota ABE Student Progress Policy addresses currently enrolled students in the ABE system who are not showing defined educational progress within the NRS. In accordance with this policy, all ABE students, with the exception of Work-Based Project Learners, (WBPLs), High Adult Secondary Education (ASE) and Citizenship-only students must show NRS level completion within 24 months of service. At the end of a student’s 24 months of service, ABE programs will need to identify non-progressing students. At that time, a progress intervention plan will need to be implemented for the identified student(s) and student progress will be monitored for no longer than 6 months.

Key Points included in the ABE Student Progress Policy:

  • Definition of student progress
  • Definition of 24 months of service
  • Comprehensive progress intervention plan that addresses non-progressing students
  • Progress intervention plan action steps
  • Options for ABE students who do not meet the criteria of the progress intervention plan

The following information includes policy definitions and discussion from the ABE Student Progress Policy Committee, a group comprised of ABE program managers, teachers, program support staff with consultation from MDE-ABE staff.

Minnesota Department of Education (MDE)
ABE Student Progress Policy Position Statement

It is the position of MDE-ABE that eligible ABE students who are receiving free education services through ABE programs must have National Reporting System (NRS) educational goals that conform to eligible ABE core and conditional content areas of instruction. Once they are enrolled, they must demonstrate that they are making measurable progress as determined by federal and state approved NRS adult-appropriate standardized assessments. It is reasonable for MDE-ABE to require that students demonstrate a minimum level of progress consistent throughout the state of Minnesota . Students who cannot demonstrate progress are not fulfilling the academic intent and purpose of ABE and are using resources that may more effectively serve other students who have the ability to benefit. They may benefit from other adult services or programming in their community.

MDE-ABE Student Progress Policy

When possible, the following Student Progress Policy should be communicated to students at intake:

  1. If a Minnesota ABE student receives two years (or 24 months) of ABE services without showing a NRS level completion, an intervention team must meet with the student to offer a one-time 6 month intervention plan. In some cases, it may be necessary and appropriate to develop a progress plan prior to the two year timeline; this decision is at the discretion of the ABE staff.
  2. The progress plan may include a referral to another adult service or community program that has more appropriate goals and progress expectations. According to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), ABE must provide equal access and opportunity to persons with disabilities, but not educational services if the student does not fulfill the academic intent and purpose of ABE.

Student Progress Policy Definitions

Two Years (24 months) of Service

Definition:  Two years (24 months) of service from an ABE program, includes only months during which service was accessed by the student. If a student takes a break from programming and comes back, the months away do not count as part of the 24 months of service.

Rationale:  This timeline (rather than number of contact hours) will accommodate the diversity in intensity and frequency of services across Minnesota. Consideration is also made for adult students who often cannot attend programming consistently due to changes in work, family circumstances, day-care, health or medical issues, and other commitments.


Definition: Progress is defined as educational functioning level completion according to the guidelines of the National Reporting System (NRS).

Rationale: This definition of progress was chosen as it is based on federal and state approved NRS adult-appropriate standardized assessments and the federal and state accountability system of student academic performance recognized by all programs and stakeholders in the ABE system.

Progress Intervention Team

Definition: The intervention team will always include the student and teacher. Participation may include the program manager, lead teacher, volunteer tutor, family members, and other service providers or advocates.

Rationale: There are many reasons and other factors for a lack of NRS level completion. Each team member may contribute different information that will result in a more comprehensive intervention plan leading to change and success.

Progress Intervention Plan (see Intervention Form Template)

Begin by downloading and printing the Intervention Form Template above.  The progress plan must include the following:

  1. Action Plan – A clear description of actions/activities to be taken by the student and teacher. Possible examples may include a behavioral contract, attendance contract, consultation with ABE Supplemental Service Provider, PANDA. See the Adult Learner Intervention.
  2. Timelines – For each action in the plan, a deadline for accomplishment must be established.
  3. Guideline – Periodic follow-up should occur during the six month policy period.
  4. Performance – Actions in the Intervention Plan must be written in quantifiable and/or measurable terms.
  5. Duration – the complete Intervention Plan timeline must not extend beyond 6 months with periodic follow-up during the 6 month period.
  6. Signatures – the Progress Plan must include signatures from the student and a progress intervention team member.
  7. If necessary and possible, options and referral to other adult services (Supplemental services, Community Education programs, Social Services, etc.)

Progress Policy Enrollment Options for Non-Progressing Students

  1. Student follows the one-time 6 month intervention plan.
  2. Student exits ABE program, with or without a referral to other adult services.
  3. Student remains enrolled in the ABE program without counting contact hours. A fee may or may not be charged for services at the discretion of the program.
  4. Student remains enrolled in the ABE program due to policy exceptions: high adult secondary, work-based project learners, and citizenship-only.