Bill Text: IL SB1739 | 2017-2018 | 100th General Assembly | Engrossed

Bill Title: Amends the Higher Education Student Assistance Act. Provides that a student who is already licensed to teach and is enrolled in a course of study leading to an additional teaching endorsement or a master's degree in an academic field in which he or she is teaching or plans to teach may participate in the Minority Teachers of Illinois scholarship program (rather than limiting the program to undergraduate students). Makes a conforming change. Effective June 1, 2018.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 12-0)

Status: (Engrossed) 2017-05-22 - Placed on Calendar Order of 3rd Reading - Short Debate [SB1739 Detail]

Download: Illinois-2017-SB1739-Engrossed.html

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1 AN ACT concerning education.
2 Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
3represented in the General Assembly:
4 Section 5. The Higher Education Student Assistance Act is
5amended by changing Section 50 as follows:
6 (110 ILCS 947/50)
7 Sec. 50. Minority Teachers of Illinois scholarship
9 (a) As used in this Section:
10 "Eligible applicant" means a minority student who has
11 graduated from high school or has received a high school
12 equivalency certificate and has maintained a cumulative
13 grade point average of no less than 2.5 on a 4.0 scale, and
14 who by reason thereof is entitled to apply for scholarships
15 to be awarded under this Section.
16 "Minority student" means a student who is any of the
17 following:
18 (1) American Indian or Alaska Native (a person
19 having origins in any of the original peoples of North
20 and South America, including Central America, and who
21 maintains tribal affiliation or community attachment).
22 (2) Asian (a person having origins in any of the
23 original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, or

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1 the Indian subcontinent, including, but not limited
2 to, Cambodia, China, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia,
3 Pakistan, the Philippine Islands, Thailand, and
4 Vietnam).
5 (3) Black or African American (a person having
6 origins in any of the black racial groups of Africa).
7 Terms such as "Haitian" or "Negro" can be used in
8 addition to "Black or African American".
9 (4) Hispanic or Latino (a person of Cuban, Mexican,
10 Puerto Rican, South or Central American, or other
11 Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race).
12 (5) Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander (a
13 person having origins in any of the original peoples of
14 Hawaii, Guam, Samoa, or other Pacific Islands).
15 "Qualified student" means a person (i) who is a
16 resident of this State and a citizen or permanent resident
17 of the United States; (ii) who is a minority student, as
18 defined in this Section; (iii) who, as an eligible
19 applicant, has made a timely application for a minority
20 teaching scholarship under this Section; (iv) who is
21 enrolled on at least a half-time basis at a qualified
22 Illinois institution of higher learning; (v) who is
23 enrolled in a course of study leading to teacher licensure
24 certification, including alternative teacher licensure,
25 or, if the student is already licensed to teach, in a
26 course of study leading to an additional teaching

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1 endorsement or a master's degree in an academic field in
2 which he or she is teaching or plans to teach
3 certification; (vi) who maintains a grade point average of
4 no less than 2.5 on a 4.0 scale; and (vii) who continues to
5 advance satisfactorily toward the attainment of a degree.
6 (b) In order to encourage academically talented Illinois
7minority students to pursue teaching careers at the preschool
8or elementary or secondary school level, each qualified student
9shall be awarded a minority teacher scholarship to any
10qualified Illinois institution of higher learning. However,
11preference may be given to qualified applicants enrolled at or
12above the junior level.
13 (c) Each minority teacher scholarship awarded under this
14Section shall be in an amount sufficient to pay the tuition and
15fees and room and board costs of the qualified Illinois
16institution of higher learning at which the recipient is
17enrolled, up to an annual maximum of $5,000; except that in the
18case of a recipient who does not reside on-campus at the
19institution at which he or she is enrolled, the amount of the
20scholarship shall be sufficient to pay tuition and fee expenses
21and a commuter allowance, up to an annual maximum of $5,000.
22 (d) The total amount of minority teacher scholarship
23assistance awarded by the Commission under this Section to an
24individual in any given fiscal year, when added to other
25financial assistance awarded to that individual for that year,
26shall not exceed the cost of attendance at the institution at

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1which the student is enrolled. If the amount of minority
2teacher scholarship to be awarded to a qualified student as
3provided in subsection (c) of this Section exceeds the cost of
4attendance at the institution at which the student is enrolled,
5the minority teacher scholarship shall be reduced by an amount
6equal to the amount by which the combined financial assistance
7available to the student exceeds the cost of attendance.
8 (e) The maximum number of academic terms for which a
9qualified student can receive minority teacher scholarship
10assistance shall be 8 semesters or 12 quarters.
11 (f) In any academic year for which an eligible applicant
12under this Section accepts financial assistance through the
13Paul Douglas Teacher Scholarship Program, as authorized by
14Section 551 et seq. of the Higher Education Act of 1965, the
15applicant shall not be eligible for scholarship assistance
16awarded under this Section.
17 (g) All applications for minority teacher scholarships to
18be awarded under this Section shall be made to the Commission
19on forms which the Commission shall provide for eligible
20applicants. The form of applications and the information
21required to be set forth therein shall be determined by the
22Commission, and the Commission shall require eligible
23applicants to submit with their applications such supporting
24documents or recommendations as the Commission deems
26 (h) Subject to a separate appropriation for such purposes,

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1payment of any minority teacher scholarship awarded under this
2Section shall be determined by the Commission. All scholarship
3funds distributed in accordance with this subsection shall be
4paid to the institution and used only for payment of the
5tuition and fee and room and board expenses incurred by the
6student in connection with his or her attendance as an
7undergraduate student at a qualified Illinois institution of
8higher learning. Any minority teacher scholarship awarded
9under this Section shall be applicable to 2 semesters or 3
10quarters of enrollment. If a qualified student withdraws from
11enrollment prior to completion of the first semester or quarter
12for which the minority teacher scholarship is applicable, the
13school shall refund to the Commission the full amount of the
14minority teacher scholarship.
15 (i) The Commission shall administer the minority teacher
16scholarship aid program established by this Section and shall
17make all necessary and proper rules not inconsistent with this
18Section for its effective implementation.
19 (j) When an appropriation to the Commission for a given
20fiscal year is insufficient to provide scholarships to all
21qualified students, the Commission shall allocate the
22appropriation in accordance with this subsection. If funds are
23insufficient to provide all qualified students with a
24scholarship as authorized by this Section, the Commission shall
25allocate the available scholarship funds for that fiscal year
26on the basis of the date the Commission receives a complete

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1application form.
2 (k) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (j) or any
3other provision of this Section, at least 30% of the funds
4appropriated for scholarships awarded under this Section in
5each fiscal year shall be reserved for qualified male minority
6applicants. If the Commission does not receive enough
7applications from qualified male minorities on or before
8January 1 of each fiscal year to award 30% of the funds
9appropriated for these scholarships to qualified male minority
10applicants, then the Commission may award a portion of the
11reserved funds to qualified female minority applicants.
12 (l) Prior to receiving scholarship assistance for any
13academic year, each recipient of a minority teacher scholarship
14awarded under this Section shall be required by the Commission
15to sign an agreement under which the recipient pledges that,
16within the one-year period following the termination of the
17program for which the recipient was awarded a minority teacher
18scholarship, the recipient (i) shall begin teaching for a
19period of not less than one year for each year of scholarship
20assistance he or she was awarded under this Section; and (ii)
21shall fulfill this teaching obligation at a nonprofit Illinois
22public, private, or parochial preschool, elementary school, or
23secondary school at which no less than 30% of the enrolled
24students are minority students in the year during which the
25recipient begins teaching at the school; and (iii) shall, upon
26request by the Commission, provide the Commission with evidence

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1that he or she is fulfilling or has fulfilled the terms of the
2teaching agreement provided for in this subsection.
3 (m) If a recipient of a minority teacher scholarship
4awarded under this Section fails to fulfill the teaching
5obligation set forth in subsection (l) of this Section, the
6Commission shall require the recipient to repay the amount of
7the scholarships received, prorated according to the fraction
8of the teaching obligation not completed, at a rate of interest
9equal to 5%, and, if applicable, reasonable collection fees.
10The Commission is authorized to establish rules relating to its
11collection activities for repayment of scholarships under this
12Section. All repayments collected under this Section shall be
13forwarded to the State Comptroller for deposit into the State's
14General Revenue Fund.
15 (n) A recipient of minority teacher scholarship shall not
16be considered in violation of the agreement entered into
17pursuant to subsection (l) if the recipient (i) enrolls on a
18full time basis as a graduate student in a course of study
19related to the field of teaching at a qualified Illinois
20institution of higher learning; (ii) is serving, not in excess
21of 3 years, as a member of the armed services of the United
22States; (iii) is a person with a temporary total disability for
23a period of time not to exceed 3 years as established by sworn
24affidavit of a qualified physician; (iv) is seeking and unable
25to find full time employment as a teacher at an Illinois
26public, private, or parochial preschool or elementary or

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1secondary school that satisfies the criteria set forth in
2subsection (l) of this Section and is able to provide evidence
3of that fact; (v) becomes a person with a permanent total
4disability as established by sworn affidavit of a qualified
5physician; (vi) is taking additional courses, on at least a
6half-time basis, needed to obtain licensure certification as a
7teacher in Illinois; or (vii) is fulfilling teaching
8requirements associated with other programs administered by
9the Commission and cannot concurrently fulfill them under this
10Section in a period of time equal to the length of the teaching
12 (o) Scholarship recipients under this Section who withdraw
13from a program of teacher education but remain enrolled in
14school to continue their postsecondary studies in another
15academic discipline shall not be required to commence repayment
16of their Minority Teachers of Illinois scholarship so long as
17they remain enrolled in school on a full-time basis or if they
18can document for the Commission special circumstances that
19warrant extension of repayment.
20(Source: P.A. 98-718, eff. 1-1-15; 99-143, eff. 7-27-15.)
21 Section 99. Effective date. This Act takes effect June 1,