SB 0097 Establishes a grant program for improving mathematics instruction
LR Number:0112S.01P Fiscal Note:0112-01
Last Action:04/04/01 - H Second Read Journal page:H944
Effective Date:August 28, 2001
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Current Bill Summary

SB 97 - GRANTS FOR MATH INSTRUCTION - This act establishes a four year, competitive grant program to school districts for improving math curriculum and instruction up to grade 9.

Applications may be made for grant funding for individual schools, a combination of schools or an entire school district. The act specifies certain elements which must be included in any application, including a process of instructional improvement and stated goals for improving student performance. Funding beyond the second year shall be based upon improvement in student performance on the 8th grade mathematics assessment.

Upon conclusion of the grant, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education may reimburse the local match, based upon improvement in student performance. The Department shall establish standards for student performance improvement needed for continued grant funding and reimbursement of local match.

Funds shall be distributed in equal amounts within geographic areas based proportionately on student population, but may be reallocated from an area if there are not sufficient applications.

This portion of this act is the same as SB 584 (2000).

ASSESSMENT OF ESL STUDENTS - This portion of the act provides that assessment scores of students for whom English is a second language (ESL) shall not be counted until the student has been educated in this state for three full years.

This act is the same as SB 319 from 2001.

CHARTER SCHOOLS - The act requires urban school districts to lease buildings to charter schools on terms which are, and at a price which is, "substantially equivalent," and requires good- faith negotiations by such districts, for fair market value. The provision shall not effect contracts in effect on or prior to January 1, 2001.

Only charter schools located in a building owned by a school district shall have their per pupil revenues reduced by the per pupil amount needed to repay leasehold revenue bonds obligated under a federal court desegregation action.

The act revises the procedure and schedule for chartering a school. A charter school proponent shall provide the local school district and the State Board of Education with copies of the charter school application within five days of submitting the application to the proposed sponsor. A charter application must be provided to a proposed sponsor at least 11 months prior to the proposed starting date for the school. The sponsor's decision of approval or denial must be made within 90 days of filing the proposed charter (rather than the current 60); if the charter is denied, written notice must be served on the State Board of Education within 5 days. The State Board has 60 days to deny or grant a proposed charter and shall provide reasons for denial in writing, if applicable.

Charter schools are required to employ the Missouri Assessment Program (MAP) tests. Charter schools shall provide all information needed to confirm compliance with all requirements of the charter and all charter school laws. A sponsor must take necessary steps to confirm that the charter schools it sponsors are in compliance with charter school laws.

Charter schools are required to publish audits and financial reports. Sponsors must perform criminal background checks on the members of the Board of Directors of any nonprofit corporation applying to establish a charter school, prior to granting or renewing a charter. Public reporting shall include results of background checks of charter board members. A charter may be revoked for failure to provide necessary compliance information, or the sponsor may require specified remedial action of the school.

Charter school board members, officers and employees who willfully violate charter school laws or neglect to perform any duty in the charter school laws are guilty of a misdemeanor as other public school employees are under current law. A charter school board may participate in the Missouri Public Entity Risk Management Fund to the same extent as a school board.

The act contains an emergency clause.