Bill Text: CT SB00786 | 2017 | General Assembly | Comm Sub


Bill Title: An Act Concerning Education Mandate Relief And The Transparency Of Endowed Academies.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 4-0)

Status: (Engrossed) 2017-06-03 - House Calendar Number 633 [SB00786 Detail]

Download: Connecticut-2017-SB00786-Comm_Sub.html

General Assembly

 

Substitute Bill No. 786

    January Session, 2017

 

*_____SB00786ED____032717____*

AN ACT CONCERNING EDUCATION MANDATE RELIEF AND THE TRANSPARENCY OF ENDOWED ACADEMIES.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. Section 10-15 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2017):

Public schools, including kindergartens, shall be maintained in each town for at least one hundred eighty days of actual school sessions during each school year, and for the school year commencing July 1, 2014, and each school year thereafter, in accordance with the provisions of section 10-66q. When public school sessions are cancelled for reasons of inclement weather or otherwise, the rescheduled sessions shall not be held on Saturday or Sunday. Public schools may conduct weekend education programs to provide supplemental and remedial services to students. A local or regional board of education for a school that has been designated as a low achieving school pursuant to subparagraph (A) of subdivision (1) of subsection (e) of section 10-223e, or a category four school or a category five school pursuant to said section 10-223e, may increase the number of actual school sessions during each year, and may increase the number of hours of actual school work per school session in order to improve student performance and remove the school from the list of schools designated as a low achieving school maintained by the State Board of Education. The State Board of Education (1) may authorize the shortening of any school year for a school district, a school or a portion of a school on account of an unavoidable emergency, and (2) may authorize implementation of scheduling of school sessions to permit full year use of facilities which may not offer each child one hundred eighty days of school sessions within a given school year, but which assures an opportunity for each child to average a minimum of one hundred eighty days of school sessions per school year during thirteen years of educational opportunity in the elementary and secondary schools. Notwithstanding the provisions of this section and section 10-16, the State Board of Education may, upon application by a local or regional board of education for a town that has not been designated as an alliance district, as defined in section 10-262u, approve, [for any single school year,] in whole or in part, a plan to implement alternative scheduling of school sessions which assures at least four hundred fifty hours of actual school work during the school year for nursery schools and half-day kindergartens and at least nine hundred hours of actual school work during the school year for full-day kindergartens and grades one to twelve, inclusive.

Sec. 2. Section 10-16l of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2017):

Notwithstanding any provision of the general statutes, [to the contrary,] a local or regional board of education may establish for any school year a firm graduation date for students in grade twelve which is no earlier than the one hundred eighty-fifth day noted in the school calendar originally adopted by the board for that school year, except [that] (1) a board, on or after April first in any school year, may establish such a firm graduation date for that school year which at the time of such establishment provides for at least one hundred eighty days of school, and (2) a board that has been granted a waiver pursuant to section 10-15, as amended by this act, may establish such a firm graduation date that is in accordance with the plan approved pursuant to said section.

Sec. 3. Subsection (c) of section 10-145b of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2017):

(c) (1) The State Board of Education, upon request of a local or regional board of education, shall issue a temporary [ninety-day] one-hundred-eighty-day certificate to any applicant in the certification endorsement areas of elementary education, middle grades education, secondary academic subjects, special subjects or fields, special education, early childhood education and administration and supervision, or in the certification endorsement areas corresponding to teacher shortage areas, as determined by the Commissioner of Education pursuant to section 10-8b, when the following conditions are met:

(A) The employing agent of a board of education makes a written request for the issuance of such certificate and attests to the existence of a special plan for supervision of temporary [ninety-day] one-hundred-eighty-day certificate holders;

(B) The applicant meets the following requirements, except as otherwise provided in subparagraph (C) of this subdivision:

(i) Holds a bachelor's degree from an institution of higher education accredited by the Board of Regents for Higher Education or Office of Higher Education or regionally accredited with a major either in or closely related to the certification endorsement area in which the requesting board of education is placing the applicant or, in the case of secondary or special subject or field endorsement area, possesses at least the minimum total number of semester hours of credit required for the content area, except as provided in section 10-145l;

(ii) Has met the requirements pursuant to subsection (b) of section 10-145f;

(iii) Presents a written application on such forms as the Commissioner of Education shall prescribe;

(iv) Has [successfully completed] enrolled in an alternate route to certification program provided by the Board of Regents for Higher Education or the Office of Higher Education or public or independent institutions of higher education, regional educational service centers or private teacher or administrator training organizations and approved by the State Board of Education;

(v) Possesses an undergraduate college overall grade point average of at least "B" or, if the applicant has completed at least twenty-four hours of graduate credit, possesses a graduate grade point average of at least "B"; and

(vi) Presents supporting evidence of appropriate experience working with children; and

(C) The Commissioner of Education may waive the requirements of subparagraphs (B)(v) or (B)(vi), or both, of this subdivision upon a showing of good cause.

(2) A person serving under a temporary [ninety-day] one-hundred-eighty-day certificate shall participate in a beginning support and assessment program pursuant to section 10-220a which is specifically designed by the state Department of Education for holders of temporary [ninety-day] one-hundred-eighty-day certificates.

(3) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (a) of this section to the contrary, on and after July 1, 1989, the State Board of Education, upon receipt of a proper application, shall issue an initial educator certificate, which shall be valid for three years, to any person who has taught successfully while holding a temporary [ninety-day] one-hundred-eighty-day certificate and meets the requirements established in regulations adopted pursuant to section 10-145d.

(4) A temporary one-hundred-eighty-day certificate shall be valid for one hundred eighty days, concurrent with the school year, and may be renewed once upon request of a local or regional board of education for a consecutive, concurrent school year, provided the request is made prior to the expiration of the one-hundred-eighty-day certificate.

Sec. 4. Subsection (a) of section 10-157 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2017):

(a) Any local or regional board of education shall provide for the supervision of the schools under its control by a superintendent who shall serve as the chief executive officer of the board. The superintendent shall have executive authority over the school system and the responsibility for its supervision. Employment of a superintendent shall be by election of the board of education. Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, no person shall assume the duties and responsibilities of the superintendent until the board receives written confirmation from the Commissioner of Education that the person to be employed is properly certified or has had such certification waived by the commissioner pursuant to subsection (c) of this section. The commissioner shall inform any such board, in writing, of the proper certification, waiver of certification or lack of certification or waiver of any such person not later than fourteen days after the name of such person is submitted to the commissioner pursuant to section 10-226. A majority vote of all members of the board shall be necessary to an election, and the board shall fix the salary of the superintendent and the term of office, which shall not exceed [three] five years. Upon election and notification of employment or reemployment, the superintendent may request and the board shall provide a written contract of employment which includes, but is not limited to, the salary, employment benefits and term of office of such superintendent. Such superintendent shall, at least three weeks before the annual town or regional school district meeting, submit to the board a full written report of the proceedings of such board and of the condition of the several schools during the school year preceding, with plans and suggestions for their improvement. The board of education shall evaluate the performance of the superintendent annually in accordance with guidelines and criteria mutually determined and agreed to by such board and such superintendent.

Sec. 5. Section 10-157a of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2017):

(a) Notwithstanding any provisions of the general statutes, [to the contrary,] the boards of education of any two or more towns, or the board of education of any regional school district and the board of education of one or more of the towns comprising the district, or a committee formed and authorized by agreement of such boards on behalf of such boards may jointly employ a superintendent of schools, and said superintendent of schools shall have the powers and duties for each of said boards as provided in section 10-157, as amended by this act. Such boards of education or such committee shall specify in a written agreement the term of office of such superintendent, which shall not exceed [three] five years, and the proportionate share and limits of authorized expenditures for the salary of such superintendent and other necessary expenses, and any other pertinent matters, and shall provide for the evaluation of the superintendent pursuant to section 10-157, as amended by this act. Any agreement authorizing the employment of a superintendent pursuant to this section shall include, but need not be limited to, the duties of the committee, the membership of the committee, the voting requirements for action, and provision for termination of the agreement.

(b) Any board of education may withdraw from any agreement entered into under subsection (a) of this section if, at least one year prior to the date of proposed withdrawal, it gives written notice of its intent to do so to each of the other boards.

(c) Notwithstanding the provisions of any special act, municipal charter, local ordinance, home rule ordinance or other ordinance, or the provisions of chapters 170 and 171, any board of education that jointly employs a superintendent of schools under this section may reduce the number of board meetings it holds or hold joint meetings with any of the other boards of education that are jointly employing such superintendent for the purpose of reducing the expenses of such boards of education and aligning the provision of education by such boards of education, provided such board or boards meet at least quarterly.

Sec. 6. Subsection (a) of section 10-158a of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2017):

(a) Any two or more boards of education may, in writing, agree to establish cooperative arrangements to provide administrative and central office duties, school accommodations services, programs or activities, special education services, health care services or alternative education, as defined in section 10-74j, to enable such boards to carry out the duties specified in the general statutes. Such arrangements may include the establishment of a committee to supervise such programs, the membership of the committee to be determined by the agreement of the cooperating boards. Such committee shall have the power, in accordance with the terms of the agreement, to (1) apply for, receive directly and expend on behalf of the school districts which have designated the committee an agent for such purpose any state or federal grants which may be allocated to school districts for specified programs, the supervision of which has been delegated to such committee, provided such grants are payable before implementation of any such program or are to reimburse the committee pursuant to subsection (d) of this section for transportation provided to a school operated by a cooperative arrangement; (2) receive and disburse funds appropriated to the use of such committee by the cooperating school districts, the state or the United States, or given to the committee by individuals or private corporations; (3) hold title to real or personal property in trust, or as otherwise agreed to by the parties, for the appointing boards; (4) employ personnel; (5) enter into contracts; and (6) otherwise provide the specified programs, services and activities. Teachers employed by any such committee shall be subject to the provisions of the general statutes applicable to teachers employed by the board of education of any town or regional school district. For the purposes of this section, the term "teacher" [shall include] includes each professional employee of a committee below the rank of superintendent who holds a regular certificate issued by the State Board of Education and who is in a position requiring such certification.

Sec. 7. Section 10-34 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2017):

(a) The State Board of Education may examine any incorporated or endowed high school or academy in this state and, if it appears that such school or academy meets the requirements of the State Board of Education for the approval of public high schools, said board may approve such school or academy under the provisions of this part, and any town in which a high school is not maintained shall pay the whole of the tuition fees of pupils attending such school or academy, except if it is a school under ecclesiastical control.

(b) Not later than July 1, 2018, and annually thereafter, each incorporated or endowed high school or academy approved by the State Board of Education shall submit to the Commissioner of Education (1) a certified audit statement of all revenues from public and private sources and expenditures related to such incorporated or endowed high school or academy, and (2) a complete copy of such incorporated or endowed high school or academy's most recently completed Internal Revenue Service form 990, including all parts and schedules, other than Schedule B of such form.

(c) The Commissioner of Education shall post any reports, certified audit statements and forms submitted to the Department of Education regarding an incorporated or endowed high school or academy approved by the State Board of Education on the department's Internet web site not later than thirty days after receiving such reports, statements or forms. The commissioner shall identify any incorporated or endowed high school or academy that did not submit a report, certified audit statement or form for the current reporting period and post such information on the department's Internet web site not later than thirty days after failing to receive such reports, statements or forms.

(d) Prior to the adoption of an annual budget by an incorporated or endowed high school or academy approved by the State Board of Education, the sections of such budget that receive public funds shall be (1) reviewed by the local and regional boards of education that send students to such incorporated or endowed high school or academy, and (2) subject to a public hearing.

Sec. 8. Subdivision (8) of section 10-144o of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2017):

(8) ["Temporary ninety-day certificate"] "Temporary one-hundred-eighty-day certificate" means a license to teach issued on or after July 1, 1988, to a person upon the request of a local or regional board of education pursuant to subsection (c) of section 10-145b, as amended by this act. Each such certificate issued prior to July 1, 1989, may be reissued once upon the request of a local or regional board of education during the 1988-1989 school year and upon reissuance shall be effective until July 1, 1989. Any provision for the reissuance of such certificate after said school year shall be pursuant to regulations adopted by the State Board of Education;

This act shall take effect as follows and shall amend the following sections:

Section 1

July 1, 2017

10-15

Sec. 2

July 1, 2017

10-16l

Sec. 3

July 1, 2017

10-145b(c)

Sec. 4

July 1, 2017

10-157(a)

Sec. 5

July 1, 2017

10-157a

Sec. 6

July 1, 2017

10-158a(a)

Sec. 7

July 1, 2017

10-34

Sec. 8

July 1, 2017

10-144o(8)

Statement of Legislative Commissioners:

In Section 7, references to governing board were deleted for consistency; and Section 8 was added to conform with the changes being made in Section 3.

ED

Joint Favorable Subst.

 
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