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HOPI SCHOOL SYSTEM
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
May 2, 2024

 

What information is available on the transition for parents, staff and stakeholders?

  • For updates on the transition, Hopi Board of Education (HBE) issues Fact Sheets & Updates, a Transition Handbook, and Action Plans.  These and other information are available on the HSS website, www.hopischoolsystem.org, and on the Hopi School System’s Facebook page.

  • HBE will also email information directly to parent organizations, the principals, school boards, and villages and deliver hand-outs to schools and request they be distributed. 

 

Is HBE’s grant application denied, and have the factors raised in Bureau of Indian Education’s June 5, 2023 denial letter still an issue?  

  • No.  The June 5, 2023 denial letter and the factors raised in that letter were overturned and sent back for a final decision.  

 

When will the Hopi Board of Education become Hopi schools’ governing board?

  • If the Bureau of Indian Education approves HBE’s grant, HBE will become the governing board for the schools and the Hopi School System on July 1, 2024.

 

Is HBE ready to become the school board for Hopi schools?

  • Yes.  HBE is ready to become the school board for Hopi’s seven schools.

  • HBE worked closely with the Transition Team (which includes the school principals and dozens of school staff) to submit a 500-page grant application to the Bureau of Indian Education demonstrating that HBE is experienced, has transition plans in place, and is ready to oversee the schools.  

  • HBE more than satisfied all grant requirements of the Tribally Controlled Schools Act, has approved a full set of Policies and Procedures covering all aspects of school operations which are based on the schools’ current policies and procedures, and has Action Plans ready to implement the transition.

 

What will be the standards and curriculum for the Hopi School System and Hopi schools? 

  • After the recommendation and analysis of the Transition Team and principals, HBE approved the Bureau of Indian Education academic standards for Hopi schools. HBE has seated a Curriculum Committee, comprised of nine current Hopi school teachers (from pre-K to High School) to examine and recommend the best curriculum for Hopi schools.  Both are scheduled to begin in 2025/2026 SY.

  • HBE will also oversee development of a Hopi culture and language program for all Hopi schools.

 

How will school budgets be determined?

  • For 2024/2025 SY, budgets will be determined by the local school boards.  For the 2025/2026 SY, budgets will be determined by the HBE after receiving recommendations from the local school boards and principals on their needs.

 

Will school staff remain in their jobs when the Hopi School System transition occurs?

  • Yes.  Current local school boards will sign contracts with all staff for next year, 2024/2025 SY, and HBE will honor all of those contracts.

 

How will HBE do the hiring?

  • HBE values our staff and wants to maintain and grow our dedicated and qualified staff to provide quality education for our students.  HBE will do hiring beginning with the 2025/2026 SY.  Hiring will be done through the Personnel Office at the Hopi School System Central Administration Office.  

 

Will school staff salaries change? 

  • For 2024/2025 SY, staff salaries will remain as they are now and as agreed to in your 2024/2025 contracts.  

  • For 2025/2026 SY, HBE will create a single salary scale to equalize salaries across all Hopi schools.  The schools have already provided their salary scales to HBE, and HBE is carefully studying ways to ensure that staff salaries do not go down.

 

Will the Hopi Tribe take over the schools? 

  • No.  When the Bureau of Indian Education approves the Hopi School System grant, the Hopi Board of Education will become the school board and will oversee school operations and funds.  The Hopi Tribe will maintain the same oversight function it has now, but the Hopi School System will be its own independent school system.  

  • The Hopi Education Code specifically states that the Hopi Tribe will not have access to or control over school funds.

 

What will happen to the local school boards after the grant is approved?  

  • After the grant is approved, each local school board will become an advisory board to assist their school with local school matters. 

 

Can school board members decide if they want to serve on the advising local school board?

  • Each school board member can decide for him/herself if they want to serve on the local school boards.  

 

Who will determine HBE’s board pay?  

  • The stipend payments for the HBE are set forth in the Hopi Education Code.  They are set at $100 per meeting per HBE member.    

 

What will happen with current strategic plans the schools may have?

  • HBE appreciates schools who have developed strategic plans for their school’s improvement and future.  HBE looks forward to reviewing these plans and incorporating them into the overall strategic plan for the unified Hopi School System.  

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