Detailed Information on the
Bureau of Indian Affairs - K-12 School Operations Assessment

Program Code 10000140
Program Title Bureau of Indian Affairs - K-12 School Operations
Department Name Department of the Interior
Agency/Bureau Name Bureau of Indian Affairs and Bureau of Indian Education
Program Type(s) Direct Federal Program
Assessment Year 2002
Assessment Rating Adequate
Assessment Section Scores
Section Score
Program Purpose & Design 100%
Strategic Planning 86%
Program Management 72%
Program Results/Accountability 27%
Program Funding Level
(in millions)
FY2007 $537
FY2008 $563
FY2009 $563

Ongoing Program Improvement Plans

Year Began Improvement Plan Status Comments

BIA will develop academic performance and cost-efficiency measures that are comparable to similarly located public schools.

Action taken, but not completed OIEP collected data from a four state area with the highest concentration of Indian Schools. Cost definitions varied significantly from state to state rendering statistical comparisons invalid. Additional supporting data collection is underway at this time to find other more feasible factors for evaluation of program efficiency.

Ensure that student transportation budgets accurately reflect full costs including fuel and vehicle maintenance.

Action taken, but not completed In FY 2008 a data call to all BIA funded schools resulted in inconsistent results/data being reported for student transportation costs during SY 2006-07 and SY 2007-08. Not all schools would respond to the data call.

Review all bureau funded schools to determine if any receive duplicative state funding.

Action taken, but not completed In FY 2006 the results of a November, 2005 study completed by an outside evaluator on BIA funded schools with cooperative agreements with states were reviewed. The results of the study were inconclusive because many of the Tribal grant schools would not participate in the study and would not provide any data.

Completed Program Improvement Plans

Year Began Improvement Plan Status Comments

BIA will establish a measure to report on schools (number and %) that are below, near, meet or exceed academic proficiency performance goals.


Implement a Program Improvement Accountability Plan for better management of resources, improved collection of student/school data, and timely distribution of funds.

Completed This item was completed and submitted to the Department of Education and OMB. Resulting improvements have been progressive and consistent with the improvement plan.

Program Performance Measures

Term Type  
Long-term/Annual Outcome

Measure: Percent of BIE funded schools with average daily attendance rates of 92% or higher for grades 9-12 (New measure added, August 2007).


Year Target Actual
2009 87%
2012 91%
2007 86% 20%
2008 86% 17%
Long-term/Annual Outcome

Measure: Percent of 3rd grade students in Bureau-funded schools who were tested at the end of the school year and were found to be reading independently.


Year Target Actual
2009 43%
2012 68%
2007 43% 40%
2008 42% 43%
Long-term/Annual Outcome

Measure: Percent of BIE funded schools with average daily attendance rates of 92% or higher for grades K-8. (New measure added, August 2007).


Year Target Actual
2007 91% 53%
2008 55% 62%
2009 57%
2012 96%
Long-term/Annual Efficiency

Measure: Classroom activities: cost per student (New measure added, August 2007).


Annual Outcome

Measure: Percent of students proficient in math at Bureau-funded schools.


Year Target Actual
2000 47% 50%
2001 54% 50%
2002 58% 50%
2003 54% 53%
2004 --- 53%
2005 56% 35%
2006 59% 39%
2007 36% 29%
2008 30% 32%
2009 31%
2012 58%
Annual Outcome

Measure: Percent of students proficient in reading at Bureau-funded schools.


Year Target Actual
2000 45% 48%
2001 52% 50%
2002 52% 49%
2003 54% 51%
2004 --- 52%
2005 55% 47%
2006 58% 44%
2007 48% 38%
2008 37% 38%
2009 39%
2012 54%
Annual Outcome

Measure: Percent of teachers who are highly qualified in select subject areas.

Explanation:This measures how many of the BIA teachers are certified to teach in their areas of education.

Year Target Actual
2004 --- 74%
2005 76% 94%
2006 78% 95%
2007 94% 94%
2008 96% 93%
2009 99%
Annual Outcome

Measure: Percent of BIE schools not making AYP that improved in reading. (New measure, added August 2007)


Year Target Actual
2006 --- 18%
2007 21% 41%
2008 43% 43%
2009 45%
Annual Outcome

Measure: Percent of BIE funded schools achieving adequate yearly progress (AYP). (New measure, added August 2007)


Year Target Actual
2006 --- 30%
2007 34% 31%
2008 32% 32%
2009 33%
Annual Outcome

Measure: Percent of BIE schools not making AYP that improved in math. (New measure, added August 2007)


Year Target Actual
2006 --- 23%
2007 27% 41%
2008 43% 41%
2009 45%

Questions/Answers (Detailed Assessment)

Section 1 - Program Purpose & Design
Number Question Answer Score

Is the program purpose clear?

Explanation: The mission of the BIA, Office of Indian Education Programs, is to provide quality education opportunities in accordance with the tribes' needs for cultural and economic well-being in keeping with the wide diversity of Indian Tribes and Alaska Native villages as distinct cultural and governmental entities.

Evidence: In treaties dating back to the 1800's and legislation starting with the Synder Act of 1921, the Federal Government has assumed a responsibility to provide an education to Indian children. Mission statement 25 CFR Part 32.3, Pub.L 95- 561 (as amended), and 25 CFR 39. "It is the responsibility and goal of the Federal government to provide comprehensive education programs and services for American Indians and Alaska Natives."

YES 20%

Does the program address a specific interest, problem or need?

Explanation: BIA serves approximately 48,000 students in 185 schools located in 23 states and 63 reservations, representing 263 tribes, and includes the basic instructional program, student transportation, and administrative costs.

Evidence: Nationwide there are approximately 517,000 Native American children: 465,000 (including BIA students) attend public schools, and the remainder attend private schools.

YES 20%

Is the program designed to have a significant impact in addressing the interest, problem or need?

Explanation: BIA school operations program provides 78% of all Federal funding for BIA schools.

Evidence: In FY 2002, total Federal funding was $645M, with $504M from BIA and $141M from Education.

YES 20%

Is the program designed to make a unique contribution in addressing the interest, problem or need (i.e., not needlessly redundant of any other Federal, state, local or private efforts)?

Explanation: BIA schools meet the unique cultural needs of American Indians, and serve children in remote and isolated communities not accessible to public schools. A limited number of Indian students attend boarding schools which are unique to state and local governments. However, less than 10% of all eligible American Indian and Alaska Native students attend BIA schools. In addition, BIA schools are accredited by state/regional agencies and must meet the same standards for education.

Evidence: Of the 185 schools, 26 schools are on reservations in which there are no public schools, and 37 schools are more than one hour from the nearest public school. Of the 171 BIA schools operating in the 2001-02 school year, 96% were accredited under state or regional accreditation associations. There are 20,027 students in 54 boarding schools and 1,556 students in 14 dormitories.

YES 20%

Is the program optimally designed to address the interest, problem or need?

Explanation: BIA encourages the tribes to perform the work through contracts and compacts in accordance with the BIA mission to promote self-determination.

Evidence: Currently 121 schools are currently contracted through P.L.. 93-628 (Indian Self-Determination) and P.L.. 100-297 (Tribally Controlled Schools Act) grants.

YES 20%
Section 1 - Program Purpose & Design Score 100%
Section 2 - Strategic Planning
Number Question Answer Score

Does the program have a limited number of specific, ambitious long-term performance goals that focus on outcomes and meaningfully reflect the purpose of the program?

Explanation: Current strategic planning documents include the long-term goals of improving the succession of Indian students to each educational level The goals address: (1) student proficiency in math; (2) student proficiency in language arts; (3) student attendance, (4) teacher proficiency in use of new assessments; and (5) reduction in violence and substance abuse among students.

Evidence: BIA Strategic Plan (current) BIA FY 2003 Annual Performance Plan Draft DOI Strategic Plan for FY 2003-2008

YES 14%

Does the program have a limited number of annual performance goals that demonstrate progress toward achieving the long-term goals?

Explanation: "The BIA FY 2003 Annual Performance Plan contains GPRA performance targets that are annualized targets for each of the measures above. The proposed goals and measures in the DOI strategic plan would also have annualized targets. "

Evidence: "BIA FY 2003 Annual Performance Plan Draft DOI Strategic Plan for FY 2003-2008 "

YES 14%

Do all partners (grantees, sub-grantees, contractors, etc.) support program planning efforts by committing to the annual and/or long-term goals of the program?

Explanation: School boards, school staff, administrators and parents are involved in developing the consolidated school reform plan. Stakeholders assist in developing the strategic plan, goals and measures.

Evidence: The consolidated school reform plan and annual report card are shared with all stake holders.

YES 14%

Does the program collaborate and coordinate effectively with related programs that share similar goals and objectives?

Explanation: BIA collaborates with the Department of Education to approve state education plans and the allocation of funds to individual schools. Each school works with the state to obtain teacher certification and accreditation.

Evidence: BIA and Dept. of Education MOU and approved state plan. Individual state/regional accreditation and teacher certification. Multiple school attendance and curriculum policies.

YES 14%

Are independent and quality evaluations of sufficient scope conducted on a regular basis or as needed to fill gaps in performance information to support program improvements and evaluate effectiveness?

Explanation: An external evaluator conducts the Continuous Improvement Monitoring Process (CIMP) with a team composed of education specialists. One-third of the schools are reviewed annually. Schools develop and implement action plans to address areas needing improvement. CIMP reports and action plans are maintained for each school reviewed.

Evidence: Standardized state achievement tests are administered at all BIA schools.

YES 14%

Is the program budget aligned with the program goals in such a way that the impact of funding, policy, and legislative changes on performance is readily known?

Explanation: Budget request does not reflect program goals. Most of school operations funds are distributed by formula, not on factors related to goals and objectives. The schools are allowed to shift funds among program activities, for instance student transportation funds can be used for ISEP.

Evidence: Local schools consider the unique needs of students when developing their school reform plan and consolidating resources available to implement the reform plan.

NO 0%

Has the program taken meaningful steps to address its strategic planning deficiencies?

Explanation: BIA requires Corrective Action Plans when schools fail to achieve partial proficiency results. BIA adjusts its strategic plans yearly relative to actual accomplishments on annual targets. BIA and Education are collaborating to develop a criterion-referenced test aligned with national standards to assess student achievement while eliminating the cultural bias in the 23 state tests currently administered to BIA students.

Evidence: Strategic plan for Office of Indian Education Programs and DOI. As of the Fall 2002, 25% of schools require corrective action plans.

YES 14%
Section 2 - Strategic Planning Score 86%
Section 3 - Program Management
Number Question Answer Score

Does the agency regularly collect timely and credible performance information, including information from key program partners, and use it to manage the program and improve performance?

Explanation: A student count is conducted annually to determine the Average Daily Membership; consolidated school reform plans and performance report cards are submitted annually. Based on the data submitted, schools not making adequate yearly progress in (partial) proficiency are placed on a corrective action plan.

Evidence: OIEP provided lists of schools in corrective action for math proficiency: 26 schools made adequate annual progress in basic proficiency; 107 schools did not make progress this year; 2 are in year three of the plan; 6 are in year four and 38 schools have needed corrective action plans for the last 5 years.

YES 14%

Are Federal managers and program partners (grantees, subgrantees, contractors, etc.) held accountable for cost, schedule and performance results?

Explanation: The director, deputy directors, education line officers and school principals have student achievement results as a critical element in their annual performance appraisal.

Evidence: Eighteen principals were replaced and 56 teachers were released in SY 2002 due to performance.

YES 14%

Are all funds (Federal and partners') obligated in a timely manner and spent for the intended purpose?

Explanation: Based on a recent IG report of 4 sample schools, all 4 schools had questionable expenditures or inadequate financial plans. BIA has taken corrective actions at the schools. For the most part, it appears BIA schools are obligating funds in a timely manner and for the purpose intended. The Office of Audit and Evaluation coordinates responses to corrective actions found in the single audit reports.

Evidence: IG report, Annual Financial Plan for Bureau operated schools; Audit Status Report. In FY 2002, there was a 71% closure rate on audit findings.

YES 14%

Does the program have incentives and procedures (e.g., competitive sourcing/cost comparisons, IT improvements) to measure and achieve efficiencies and cost effectiveness in program execution?

Explanation: BIA school funding is allocated by formula(s) without factors that provide for incentives. However, schools can reallocate BIA and Education funds to address needs and effectiveness consistent with a Comprehensive School Improvement Plan. The NCLBA provides for additional incentives/awards for schools that meet annual progress in student achievement.

Evidence: BIA completed IT improvements by connecting all schools to the Internet. This has made teachers and students more proficient using modern technology to access/improve education skills and knowledge.

YES 14%

Does the agency estimate and budget for the full annual costs of operating the program (including all administrative costs and allocated overhead) so that program performance changes are identified with changes in funding levels?

Explanation: Although DOI complies with managerial cost accounting standards, it does not yet have a financial management system that fully allocates program costs and associates those costs with specific performance measures. This requirement might be met through Activity Based Costing (ABC), which DOI is adopting for each of its bureaus.


NO 0%

Does the program use strong financial management practices?

Explanation: The Bureau received a clean audit for FY 00 and FY 01; however, BIA received a material weakness for inadequate controls over financial reporting.

Evidence: FY 2001 Audited Financial Statements

NO 0%

Has the program taken meaningful steps to address its management deficiencies?

Explanation: Financial management training have been provided to all education line officers and staff. Corrective action plan was submitted to the IG to address findings from the last IG audit.

Evidence: Corrective action plan for BIA operated schools. Technical assistance and resource staff to provide on-site guidance to grant schools identified as high risk

YES 14%
Section 3 - Program Management Score 72%
Section 4 - Program Results/Accountability
Number Question Answer Score

Has the program demonstrated adequate progress in achieving its long-term outcome goal(s)?

Explanation: Of 169 schools, 24 are at/above 70% goal in Math, and 34 are at/above 70% goal in Language Arts.

Evidence: 26 schools are within 10% of 70% goal in Math, and 12 are within 10% of goal in Language Arts.


Does the program (including program partners) achieve its annual performance goals?

Explanation: Of 169 schools, 82 are at/above FY02 (52%) target in Math, and 77 are at/above FY 02 (52%) target in Language Arts.

Evidence: 20 schools are within 10% of FY02 target in Math, and 13 within 10% of FY 02 target in Language Arts.


Does the program demonstrate improved efficiencies and cost effectiveness in achieving program goals each year?

Explanation: BIA schools have flexibility to reallocate resources based on needs to make improvements.

Evidence: Consolidated School Reform Plan guidelines.


Does the performance of this program compare favorably to other programs with similar purpose and goals?

Explanation: GAO Report (September 2001) finds BIA student performance on standardized tests below that of public schools in NM, AZ, SD, and ND.

Evidence: GAO Report recognizes that BIA student performance may be associated with adverse social and economic conditions on reservations, lower educational levels of parents, and other factors that are outside of the school system's control.

NO 0%

Do independent and quality evaluations of this program indicate that the program is effective and achieving results?

Explanation: No Child Left Behind legislation requires independent evaluations to be done in FY 2003. Results not yet available.

Evidence: Recommend that BIA - Public school comparisons should focus on public schools in rural areas with high concentrations of Indian students for greater validity.

NO 0%
Section 4 - Program Results/Accountability Score 27%

Last updated: 09062008.2002SPR