STUDENT FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE COMMISSION
|TOPS BULLETIN NUMBER:||T2000-32|
|DATE ISSUED:||December 18, 2000|
|EFFECTIVE DATE:||As Indicated|
|DISTRIBUTION:||Louisiana High School Principals and Counselors, City and Parish School Board Presidents, School Board Superintendents, Department of Education, Louisiana Officials, Louisiana Legislators, and Commission Members|
|TOPIC:||TOPS Certification Process Requirements|
To assure that your Scholarship and Grant Policy and Procedure Manual remains current, please record this document on your TOPS Bulletin index and retain it with your manual.
In our efforts to maintain the integrity of the TOPS program through audits and to process students who have fallen outside the normal certification process, it is often necessary to request an "official" high school transcript from the graduating high school. That transcript is evaluated by our Program Review Section. Recently, we have received transcripts that Program Review has rejected as "unofficial." Based on feedback, it is clear that there is some confusion as to what comprises an "official" transcript.
Bulletin 741 requires each school to send a transcript for each student to the Louisiana Department of Education, Bureau of Secondary Education, in order for the student to receive a diploma. Once these transcripts are signed by the Director of the Bureau, they become "official" transcripts. Transcripts that do not have the Director's signature have been routinely rejected as "unofficial."
Because there is a period of time between submission of the transcripts for approval and their return to the school, there are periods of time when an "official" transcript is not available. In an effort to meet the needs of students, this agency has established an exception to the requirement for an "official" transcript containing the Director's signature. If the school does not have an "official" transcript, the principal/headmaster may satisfy this requirement by providing a transcript with a written and signed certification that the grades and courses attempted and/or earned on the transcript reflect the same information that was on the transcript submitted to the Louisiana Department of Education, Bureau of Secondary Education.
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