SB 0697 Creates more funding for textbooks and signing bonuses for rural schools
LR Number:2397S.02I Fiscal Note:2397-02
Last Action:01/23/02 - Hearing Conducted S Education Committee Journal page:
Effective Date:August 28, 2002
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Current Bill Summary

SB 697 - This act revises provisions relating to rural school districts. A rural school district is defined as any school district which:

(1) Contains any part of either a third or fourth class county; (2) Has a current assessed valuation which is less than thirty million dollars; and (3) Has a current membership which is less than or equal to six hundred pupils.

The distribution of Free Textbook funds pursuant to Section 148.360, RSMo, is revised to increase distribution to rural school districts, especially those with an enrollment of 100 pupils or less, by doubling the pupil weighting of the first 100 pupils in a rural school district. The weighting for the remainder of the pupil count for a rural school district is reduced so that at the maximum membership of 600 pupils, the Free Textbook payment for a rural school district is the same as for any other district with that same membership.

The act creates a program of signing bonuses for newly-hired teachers in rural school districts. An annual signing bonus of $2000 will be given for a period of up to five consecutive years, provided the teacher is employed in the current year with a rural school district in a full-time teaching position.

A "newly-hired teacher" must be employed by the district as a full time teacher for the first time in the current school year, beginning no later than February first. Neither a substitute teacher nor any teacher who has been a "newly-hired teacher" in a previous school year is eligible to be a "newly- hired teacher".

The signing bonus shall be in addition to the base salary to which the teacher would otherwise be entitled. Teachers receiving the signing bonus shall receive any pay and benefits received by teachers of similar training, experience, and duties. The signing bonus shall be provided no later than one month following the commencement of employment as a newly-hired teacher.

Any rule created under this act shall become effective only if it complies with chapter 536, RSMo.