Report 2016-109 Recommendation 16 Responses

Report 2016-109: Uniform Complaint Procedures: The California Department of Education's Inadequate Oversight Has Led to a Lack of Uniformity and Compliance in the Processing of Complaints and Appeals (Release Date: January 2017)

Recommendation #16 To: Education, Department of

To increase the efficiency and effectiveness of LEAs' UCP processes, Education should work with those LEAs throughout the State that receive a disproportionately high number of non-UCP complaints through the UCP process to assess the potential benefits of establishing similar mechanisms.

1-Year Agency Response

Education's position on this recommendation remains unchanged; no additional comments will be forthcoming.

  • Response Date: February 2018

California State Auditor's Assessment of 1-Year Status: Will Not Implement

As we state in our report, receiving a larger number of complaints that are not covered by the UCP can take time away from investigating those that do meet UCP criteria, making LEAs' processes less efficient. Although the UCP regulations allow LEAs to use the UCP process to address non-UCP complaints, we believe that LEAs can benefit from establishing a mechanism that allows specified individuals for the districts to promptly discuss with complainants how best to address their complaints and to determine whether their complaints fall under the purview of the UCP before they file their complaints. Further, as part of its monitoring of LEAs' compliance with UCP requirements, Education has access to an LEA's complaint log that identifies all complaints that an LEA investigation using the UCP process. As such, we believe that Education can work with those LEAs throughout the State that receive a disproportionately high number of non-UCP complaints through the UCP process and assess the potential benefits of establishing mechanisms to reduce the number of non-UCP complaints investigated through the UCP process.


6-Month Agency Response

Education's position on this recommendation is unchanged; no additional comments will be forthcoming.

  • Response Date: August 2017

California State Auditor's Assessment of 6-Month Status: Will Not Implement

As we state in our report, receiving a larger number of complaints that are not covered by the UCP can take time away from investigating those that do meet UCP criteria, making LEAs' processes less efficient. Although the UCP regulations allow LEAs to use the UCP process to address non-UCP complaints, we believe that LEAs can benefit from establishing a mechanism that allows specified individuals for the districts to promptly discuss with complainants how best to address their complaints and to determine whether their complaints fall under the purview of the UCP before they file their complaints. Further, as part of its monitoring of LEAs' compliance with UCP requirements, Education has access to an LEA's complaint log that identifies all complaints that an LEA investigation using the UCP process. As such, we believe that Education can work with those LEAs throughout the State that receive a disproportionately high number of non-UCP complaints through the UCP process and assess the potential benefits of establishing mechanisms to reduce the number of non-UCP complaints investigated through the UCP process.


60-Day Agency Response

Education does not concur with this recommendation. Districts are permitted to use the UCP process to address non-UCP complaints (5 CCR 4610(e)); however, Education does not have responsibility or oversight over non-UCP complaints. In addition, Education does not have knowledge of the districts that have opted to use the UCP process for non-UCP complaints.

  • Response Date: May 2017

California State Auditor's Assessment of 60-Day Status: Will Not Implement

As we state in our report receiving a larger number of complaints that are not covered by the UCP can take time away from investigating those that do meet UCP criteria, making LEAs' processes less efficient. Although the UCP regulations allow LEAs to use the UCP process to address non-UCP complaints, we believe that LEAs can benefit from establishing a mechanism that allows specified individuals for the districts to promptly discuss with complainants how best to address their complaints and to determine whether their complaints fall under the purview of the UCP before they file their complaints. Further, as part of its monitoring of LEAs' compliance with UCP requirements, Education has access to an LEA's complaint log that identifies all complaints that an LEA investigation using the UCP process. As such, we believe that Education can work with those LEAs throughout the State that receive a disproportionately high number of non-UCP complaints through the UCP process and assess the potential benefits of establishing mechanisms to reduce the number of non-UCP complaints investigated through the UCP process.


All Recommendations in 2016-109

Agency responses received are posted verbatim.