Missouri State Senate

Senate Committee Substitute

SCS/SBs 1, 22, 49 & 70 - This act modifies provisions relating to elementary and secondary education.

GRADUATION RATE DEFINITION: This act changes the definition of "graduation rate" to be the graduation rate determined by the annual performance report required by the Missouri School Improvement Program. (Section 160.011)

CHARTER SCHOOLS

SECTION 160.400: This act modifies where charter schools may operate. This act repeals the current restrictions on when charter schools may operate in provisionally accredited districts. Instead, charter schools may operate in any provisionally accredited district at any time. It removes the restrictions on which sponsoring entities may sponsor charters in a provisionally accredited district. In addition, charter schools may operate in any district in a county that contains an unaccredited district or provisionally accredited district or in a county adjoining to a county containing an unaccredited district or a provisionally accredited district. If the unaccredited district or provisionally accredited district regains accreditation, charter schools may continue to operate there.

In addition, a school board of an accredited district or a combination of school boards of accredited districts may sponsor charter schools located in unaccredited school districts.

This act repeals the requirement that a two-year private vocational or technical school be a member of the North Central Association to be a charter school sponsor.

This act requires that the contract between a sponsor and a charter school contain performance consequences aligned with annual performance report evaluations of public schools.

A sponsor's policies and procedures must require charter schools to meet current state academic performance standards as well as other standards agreed upon by the sponsor and the charter school in the performance contract.

When a sponsor notifies a charter school of closure, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education must withhold funds to assure all obligations of the charter school are met. The state, charter school's sponsor, or resident district are not liable for any outstanding liability or obligations of the charter school.

SECTION 160.403: This act exempts the Missouri Charter Public School Commission from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education's application and approval process for entities eligible to be sponsors.

SECTION 160.405: A charter must include a time frame for implementation between a charter school and the sponsor as to when a sponsor will intervene in a charter school.

A charter must contain a clause naming a trustee agreed upon by the charter school and its sponsor to resolve any remaining financial obligations and be responsible for the disposition of assets if the school should close.

Currently, the State Board of Education must approve a charter by December first of the year prior to the proposed opening date of the charter school. Instead, the State Board of Education is required to approve a charter by January 31 prior to the school year that is the proposed opening date of the charter school.

Under current law, when a sponsor approves a charter and submits the application to the State Board of Education, it must include a statement of finding that the application meets statutory requirements. This act requires the sponsor to prepare the statement of finding.

The State Board of Education must approve or disapprove a charter application within sixty days of its receipt. Any charter application received on or before November 15 of the year prior to the proposed opening of the charter school must be considered by the State Board within sixty days. If the State Board disapproves a charter application, it must do so in writing and identify the specific failures of the application to meet statutory requirements. The written disapproval must be provided to the sponsor within ten business days.

This act allows charter schools to provide early childhood education if specified in the charter.

Currently, a sponsor may place a charter school on probationary status for no more than twelve months. This act increases the amount of time a charter school may be on probationary status to twenty-four months.

A charter school that has an annual performance report consistent with a classification of accredited for three of the last four years and is fiscally viable may have an expedited renewal process as defined by rule.

The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education must calculate an annual performance report for each charter school and must publish it in the same manner as they are calculated and published for districts and attendance centers.

The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education must create a committee to investigate facility access and affordability for charter schools. This committee must report its findings to the General Assembly by December 31, 2015.

SECTION 160.408: This act allows high-quality charter schools, as defined in the act, to be provided expedited opportunities to replicate and expand into unaccredited districts, the St. Louis City School District, and the Kansas City School District. A high-quality charter school must receive eighty percent or more on its annual performance report in three of the previous four school years, maintain a graduation rate of at least eighty percent for three of the last four school years, be in material compliance with its performance contract and the charter school laws, and be organizationally and fiscally viable.

The term of such a charter will be five years and may be renewed for terms up to ten years.

SECTION 160.410: Charter schools will enroll nonresident pupils whose parents are employed at the charter school. Charter schools will enroll nonresident pupils from unaccredited schools in the same or an adjoining county who are unable to transfer to an accredited school in their district of residence.

A charter school's lottery system must not discriminate based on the parents' ability to pay fees or tuition.

This act changes how students are counted in the performance of the charter school on the statewide assessments. The charter school must include students in the charter school present on the last Wednesday in September through the administration of the Missouri Assessment Program test without transferring out of the school and reenrolling.

SECTION 160.415: A charter school's weighted average daily attendance must be adjusted to include any nonresident pupil who attends the charter school and whose parent is employed at it.

A charter school may receive tuition payments for nonresident students who transfer to it from an unaccredited school.

SECTION 160.417: This act changes the phrase "number of school days and hours required" to "the minimum amount of school time required."

SECTION 160.425: The Commission may employ staff as needed to carry out its duties. Commission employees will be considered state employees for purposes of retirement and health plans.

This act creates the "Missouri Charter Public School Commission Revolving Fund" in the state treasury.

These provisions are substantially similar to HB 1550 (2015) and are similar to provisions contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014) and SB 637 (2014).

SECTION 163.036: When a local school board sponsors a charter school, it may only submit an estimate of the district's weighted average daily attendance for the current year. The school board will be prohibited from using a weighted average daily attendance count from any preceding year for purposes of determining state aid.

This section is identical to a provision contained in CCs/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014) and is identical to SB 547 (2014) and SB 390 (2013).

SCHOOL DISTRICT ACCREDITATION: Before the State Board of Education classifies a school district as unaccredited or reclassifies an accredited district as provisionally accredited, if there is no State Board member who is a resident of the congressional district in which the affected district is located, the State Board must notify the Governor of its intent to change the classification. The Governor must make the appointment within thirty days of the notification.

This section is identical to a provision contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014). (Section 161.084)

When the State Board of Education assigns classification designations to school districts, it must use one of the following designations: unaccredited, provisionally accredited, accredited, and accredited with distinction.

The State Board of Education must develop and implement a process to provide assistance teams to borderline districts, as determined by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, and to underperforming districts upon assignment of such classification or determination by the Department. Teams must have at least ten members, including two active classroom teachers in the district, two principals, and one parent of a student in the district. The Department staff member assigned to the region may be included in the team activities but must not be formally assigned to the team. Teams must provide an analysis of the assessment data, classroom practices, and the communication processes within buildings, in the district, and the community, and also provide prescriptions for improvement based on the district's and community's needs. The team must provide recommendations by June 30, 2016. Assignment of teams must be prioritized so that districts with lower APR scores are addressed first. Suggestions are mandatory for underperforming districts but not for borderline districts. If an underperforming district disagrees with any suggestion of the assistance team, the district must propose a different method of accomplishing what the team has suggested.

This section is identical to a provision in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014) and is similar to SB 64 (2015), SB 856 (2014) and a provision in SB 993 (2014), and HB 1856 (2014). (Section 161.087)

ATTENDANCE CENTER ACCREDITATION: No later than school year 2016-2017, the State Board of Education must adopt and implement a system of classification that accredits individual attendance centers within a district separately from the district as a whole. Attendance centers must be assigned one of the following classification designations: unaccredited, provisionally accredited, accredited, or accredited with distinction. The State Board of Education must prepare an annual performance report for any attendance center that provides only kindergarten through grade two but will not assign it a classification designation.

The State Board of Education may consider the classification designation of an attendance center in its accreditation classification system to exempt attendance centers with classification numbers outside the range of numbers assigned to high schools, middle schools, junior high schools, or elementary schools. Public separate special education schools within a special school district are exempted from these accreditation requirements. However, a special school district must report all scores on its annual performance report to the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education for all of its schools. Juvenile detention centers within a special school district are exempt from these accreditation standards.

This act waives the statutory two year delayed effective date for school accreditation rules for this system. This section is identical to a provision in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014). (Section 161.238)

SCHOOL TRANSFER AND IMPROVEMENT TASK FORCE: This act creates the "School Transfer and Improvement Task Force" within the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. The task force will study the following: means to address failing schools, including a school improvement district; developing options for school transfer finance formulas; best practices for how to design and finance public virtual and blended schools; and best practices and possible pilot projects to assist transient students. The task force will consist of the following members:

(1) Three members of the Senate, appointed by the President Pro Tempore of the Senate, of whom not more than two shall be of the same party;

(2) One member from an education policy research organization in Missouri, appointed by the President Pro Tempore of the Senate;

(3) Three members of the House of Representatives, appointed by the Speaker, of whom not more than two shall be of the same party;

(4) One member from a statewide business association, appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives;

(5) The Commissioner of Education, or his or her designee;

(6) One member from an education organization consisting exclusively of elected officials, appointed by the Commissioner of Education;

(7) The Lieutenant Governor, or his or her designee.

The task force must make recommendations by February 1, 2016 to the General Assembly. The task force will expire on April 31, 2016.

This provision is identical to a provision contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014). (Section 161.1000)

STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION INTERVENTION POWERS: This act allows the State Board of Education to lapse the corporate organization of all or part of an unaccredited school district. If the State Board appoints a special administrative board for the operation of a part of an unaccredited school district, the State Board of Education must determine an equitable apportionment of state and federal aid for the part of the district. In addition, the school district must provide local revenue in proportion to the weighted average daily attendance of the part governed by the special administrative board.

The State Board of Education may appoint members of the elected board to a special administrative board but members of the elected board must not comprise more than forty-nine percent of the special administrative board's composition.

Nothing in this provision of law must be construed to permit either the State Board of Education or a special administrative board to raise, in any way not specifically allowed by law, the tax levy of the district or any part of the district without a vote of the people.

This act provides that when the State Board of Education determines another form of governance for an unaccredited district, that other form of governance will be subject to the following provisions of law: it will retain the authority granted to a board of education; it will expire at the end of the third year of its appointment unless reauthorized; it will not be deemed to be the state or a state agency; and it will not be considered a successor entity for purposes of employment contracts, unemployment compensation or any other purpose.

If the State Board of Education reasonably believes that a school district is unlikely to provide for the minimum school term required by section 163.021 because of financial difficulty, the State Board may, prior to the start of the school term, allow continued governance by the existing district school board under terms and conditions established by the state board of education. As an alternative, the State Board may lapse the corporate organization of the district and implement one of the options available to the State Board to intervene in an unaccredited district. However, this provision will not apply to any district solely on the basis of financial difficulty resulting from paying tuition and providing transportation for transfer students.

These provisions are substantially similar to provisions contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014). (Sections 162.081)

VIRTUAL EDUCATION: Currently, when a resident student completes a virtual course offered by his or her school district, the student's attendance upon course completion is calculated as ninety-four percent of the hours of attendance for such class delivered in a non-virtual program. This act provides that when a student is a candidate for A+ tuition reimbursements, the school must attribute no less than ninety-five percent of attendance to the student's completion of the virtual course.

This provision is identical to HB 1895 (2014) and a provision contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014). (Section 162.1250)

This act defines a "virtual school of choice" as a school authorized to provide a full-time kindergarten through grade twelve virtual program that provides a unified and sequential online curriculum, allows students to learn at a flexible pace, employs Missouri certified teachers to oversee all instruction, develops an individualized learning plan for all students, and is hosted by an accredited district or a charter school with an annual performance score of seventy percent or greater.

A student who has been enrolled in and attending an unaccredited school for at least one semester and is unable to transfer to an accredited school in the district of residence is eligible to enroll in a virtual school of choice. A student enrolled in a district in the same or an adjoining county as a district operating an unaccredited school may also enroll in a virtual school of choice. A student may enroll in the virtual school of choice hosted by the district of residence or by a charter school in the district of residence. In such a situation, there is no change in the distribution of state school aid. A student may enroll in a virtual school of choice that is hosted neither by the district of residence nor by a charter school in the district of residence. In such a situation, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education will deduct an amount equal to the state adequacy target from the district of residence's state aid and credit it to the virtual school of choice. Funds distribution will be in two increments: fifty percent completion and one hundred percent completion based on the student's progress. A student will not be admitted to a virtual school of choice hosted by another district if his or her admission would cause the amount deducted from the district of residence's state aid to exceed the aggregate amount of state aid due to the district. (Section 162.1250)

TRANSIENT STUDENT RATIO & STUDENT SCORES: This act requires the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to annually calculate a transient student ratio for each public school attendance center, each school district, each charter school, and each local education agency. The transient student ratio must be published on the Department's website and in the school accountability report card for each district and attendance center. The Department must also publish on its website an aggregate transient student ratio for the state.

The transient student ratio will use data, including the number of students enrolled in the district or school, the number of students who withdraw from the district or school, and the number of students who are enrolled, withdrew, and later reentered the district or school.

Each school district must report annually to the Department any information and data necessary for the Department to calculate transient student ratios.

In a transient student's first year of attendance in a district, the student's score on the statewide assessments will not be included when calculating the status or progress scores on the district's annual performance report scores. The scores will be counted for growth scores from the previous year's assessment for the purpose of the district's annual performance report score and to serve as the baseline for growth in the next year's assessment. In the second year of attendance, a transient student's score on the statewide assessments will be weighted at fifty percent, with growth counting for fifty percent. In the third year of attendance and any subsequent year of attendance, a transient student's status, progress and growth score will be weighted at one hundred percent when calculating the district's performance for purposes of the district's annual performance report score.

These provisions are identical to provisions contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014) and are similar to SB 765 (2014). (Sections 162.1303 & 162.1305)

PARENT NOTIFICATION OF UNACCREDITED STATUS & HOME VISITS: When a district or attendance center becomes unaccredited, the district must promptly notify the parent or guardian of students enrolled in the district of the loss of accreditation within seven business days. The notice must also include an explanation of the option for a student in an unaccredited school to transfer and any services for which the student may be eligible. This notice must be posted in district attendance centers and must be sent to district taxpayers and each political subdivision located in the boundaries of the school district.

This section is substantially similar to a provision contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014). (Section 162.1310)

The school board of any district that operates an underperforming school must adopt a policy regarding the availability of home visits by school personnel. The school board's policy may offer to the parent or guardian of a student enrolled in any such school the opportunity to have at least one annual home visit and must offer an opportunity for a meeting at the school or a mutually agreeable site.

This section is identical to a provision contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014). (Section 162.1313)

USE OF CERTAIN DATA FROM NEGLECTED CHILDREN AND DELINQUENT CHILDREN IN THE AGGREGATE DATA OF A SCHOOL DISTRICT: This act restricts the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education from creating a report or publication related to the Missouri School Improvement Program that includes the data of any children in facilities serving neglected children or delinquent children in a district's aggregate scores.

This section is similar to SB 566 (2014), SB 427 (2013) and SB 737 (2012). (Section 167.127)

STUDENT PROMOTION: All underperforming districts in St. Louis County, as described in the act, are prohibited from promoting any student from the fifth grade to the sixth grade or from the eighth grade to the ninth grade who has not scored at the proficient level or above on the statewide assessments in the areas of English language arts and mathematics. However, this provision does not apply to any student with an individualized education program or any student with a Section 504 Plan.

This section is identical to a provision contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014). (Section 167.642)

SCHOOL DISTRICT IMPROVEMENT MEASURES: Any unaccredited district must offer free tutoring and supplemental education services to underperforming and struggling students. Districts may use funds from the newly created School District Improvement Fund to the extent funds are available. An unaccredited district may satisfy the free tutoring services requirement by entering into a contract with a public library for online tutoring services. In addition, an underperforming district may do any of the following: implement a new curriculum, as described in the act; retain an outside expert to advise the district or school on regaining accreditation; enter into a contract with an education management organization with a proven record of success to operate a school or schools within the district; enter into a collaborative relationship with an accredited district in which teachers from both districts exchange positions for two school weeks; or implement any other change suggested by the State Board of Education, expert, contractor, or assistance team.

Any underperforming district may offer an attendance recovery program designed exclusively to allow students to recapture attendance hours lost due to absences. Attendance recovery hours may be included in the district’s weighted average daily attendance and also in the calculation of a district’s attendance rate for purposes of the Missouri school improvement program accreditation scoring.

This section is identical to a provision contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014). (Sections 167.685 & 167.688)

READING, PERSONALIZED LEARNING PLANS, STUDENT RETENTION: This act requires, beginning July 1, 2016, all public schools in the St. Louis City School District and Kansas City School District, including charter schools, to use a response-to-intervention tiered approach to reading instruction for students determined by their school to be struggling readers. At a minimum, the reading levels of students in kindergarten through tenth grade must be assessed at the beginning and middle of the school year. Students who score below district benchmarks must be provided with intensive, systemic reading instruction.

Beginning on January 1, 2016, and each January thereafter, each public school in the St. Louis City School District and Kansas City School District, including charter schools, must prepare a personalized learning plan for any kindergarten or first grade student whose most recent school-wide reading assessment result shows the student is below grade level. Certain exceptions exist from this requirement for students with an IEP or a Section 504 Plan. For any student with a personalized learning plan, the student's main teacher must consult with the student's parent or guardian about the plan and must have consent to implement it. If a student is still performing below grade level through the end of the first grade year, the school must refer him or her for assessment to determine if an IEP is necessary. If an IEP is not necessary, the personalized learning plan must remain in place until the student is at grade level.

Any student who is not reading at the second grade level in the St. Louis City School District and the Kansas City School District by the end of second grade may be promoted to third grade only if: the school provides additional reading instruction during the summer and demonstrates the student is ready for third grade at the end of summer school; if the school provides a "looping" classroom in which the student remains with the same teacher for multiple years and the student is not reading at the third grade level by the end of third grade, the student must be retained; or the student's parents or guardians may sign a notice that they prefer to have the student promoted except that the school will have final determination to retain.

The St. Louis City School District, the Kansas City School District, and each charter school located in them must provide in the annual school accountability report card the numbers and percentages by grade of any students at grade level who have been promoted but who have been determined as reading below grade level.

School districts and charter schools subject to this requirement may provide for a student promotion and retention program and a reading instruction program that are equivalent to those which are described in this section with the oversight and approval of the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.

This section is substantially similar to a provision contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014) and is substantially similar to HB 2214 (2010). (Section 167.730)

STUDENT TRANSFERS: Currently, the school board of a school district that does not maintain an accredited school is required to pay the tuition and transportation of resident pupils who attend an accredited school in another district of the same or an adjoining county. This provision of law currently applies to both unaccredited school districts and K-8 school districts that do not offer high school grades. This act repeals the provisions applicable to unaccredited school districts so that the statute only applies to K-8 school districts. (Section 167.131)

For school year 2015-2016, students who participated in the transfer program that originated on July 1, 2013 will be allowed to participate under the same terms that governed the transfers in school year 2013-2014, except for the tuition amount. If an unaccredited district becomes provisionally accredited or accredited, any resident student who transferred will be permitted to continue his or her educational program through the completion of middle school, junior high school, or high school, whichever occurs first, and as described in the act. However, any such student must have previously attended a school in the unaccredited district for at least one semester before initially transferring, unless the student was entering kindergarten or was a first grade student. Such a student must maintain residence in the unaccredited district. A student who returns to his or her district of residence will be ineligible to transfer again.

In addition, any student who transferred from an unaccredited district to an accredited district in the same or an adjoining county in school year 2013-2014 or school year 2014-2015 but did not attend a public school for at least one semester in the unaccredited district prior to the transfer will no longer be eligible to transfer in school year 2015-2016. (Section 167.825)

Beginning in school year 2016-2017, any student enrolled in and attending an unaccredited school for at least one semester, or whose school becomes unaccredited during the student's attendance, may transfer to an accredited school in his or her district of residence that offers the student's grade level of enrollment. However, student transfers within the district of residence cannot result in a class size and assigned enrollment in a receiving school that exceeds the standard level for class size and assigned enrollment under the Missouri School Improvement Program resource standards. The school board of each district that operates an unaccredited school must determine the capacity at each of the district's accredited schools. The district's school board is responsible for coordinating the transfers within the district. Students enrolled in and attending an attendance center only offering kindergarten through grade two are neither eligible to transfer to another school nor under one of the transfer options described below. (Section 167.826)

Any student who has first attempted and is unable to transfer to an accredited school within his or her district of residence due to a lack of capacity at accredited schools in the district of residence may apply by March 1 to the appropriate education authority to transfer under one of the following education options: an accredited school in another district in the same or an adjoining county; a charter school with an annual performance report score of seventy or greater in another district in the same or an adjoining county; a virtual school of choice, as described in the act; or the virtual public school (MoVIP). (Section 167.826)

A student who is eligible to begin kindergarten or first grade at an unaccredited school may apply to the appropriate education authority for a transfer if he or she resides in the attendance area of the unaccredited school on March 1 preceding the school year of first attendance. A student who does not apply by March 1 is required to enroll and attend for one semester to become eligible. Any transfer student who does not maintain residence in the attendance area of the attendance center will lose transfer eligibility. In addition, a student who withdraws from the transfer will also lose transfer eligibility. (Section 167.826)

Unaccredited schools and provisionally accredited schools cannot receive transfer students except that a student who chooses to attend a provisionally accredited school in his or her district of residence may do so. Charter schools with a score of less than seventy percent on the annual performance report cannot receive transfer students. In addition, no attendance center with a three-year average score of seventy-five percent or lower on its annual performance report is eligible to receive transfer students, except for any student who was granted a transfer prior to the effective date of this act. (Section 167.826)

Districts and charter schools that receive student transfers are not required to do any of the following (unless they choose to do so): exceed the class size and assignment enrollment standards of a district-approved policy on class size; hire additional classroom teachers; or construct additional classrooms. (Section 167.826)

Each receiving district and charter school has the right to establish a policy for desirable class size and student-teacher ratios based on objective means and will not be required to accept any transfer students that would violate its policy. A policy may allow for estimated growth in the resident student population. A charter school may use the class size, student-teacher ratios, and growth projections for student enrollment in its charter and charter application. A district or charter school that adopts a policy must do so by January 1. If a transfer student is denied admission based on a lack of space under a policy, the student may appeal to the State Board of Education. The State Board may limit the policy if it finds the policy is unduly restrictive to student transfers. The State Board's decision is final. (Section 167.826)

Receiving districts and charter schools must adopt a tuition rate policy by February first annually. The rate of tuition to be paid to the receiving district or charter school by the sending district is based on the per-pupil cost of maintaining the receiving district's or charter school's grade level grouping. However, a receiving district and a charter school is prohibited from receiving tuition from a sending district that exceeds the receiving district's or charter school's per pupil expenditure for its resident students. If any receiving district or charter school chooses to charge a rate of tuition that is seventy percent or less of the per-pupil cost of maintaining the sending district's grade level grouping, then the statewide assessment scores and all other performance data for those students whom the district received will not be used for five school years when calculating the performance of the receiving district or charter school for purposes of the Missouri school improvement program or annual performance report. (Section 167.826)

The school board of a receiving district or the governing board of a charter school may choose to charge a rate of tuition less than the amount that would otherwise be calculated under the statutory calculation. This act creates the Supplemental Tuition Fund in the state treasury. If the school board of a receiving district or the governing board of a charter school chooses to charge a rate of tuition that is less than ninety percent of the rate that would otherwise be charged under the statutory calculation, ten percent of the tuition rate will be paid from the Supplemental Tuition Fund. (Section 167.826)

Any district that received transfer students in the 2013-2014 and 2014-2015 school years may adjust the tuition paid by the sending district to seventy percent of the per-pupil cost of maintaining the sending district's grade level grouping. If a district adjusts its tuition rate, the statewide assessment scores and performance data for the transfer students will not be used for five school years when calculating the receiving district's performance for purposes of the Missouri School Improvement Program. (Section 167.826)

Sending districts must pay tuition to receiving districts and receiving charter schools in two increments: one increment at the start of the school year and a second increment at the start of the second semester. (Section 167.826)

If an unaccredited school becomes provisionally accredited or accredited, any resident student who transferred under one of the transfer options will be permitted to continue his or her educational program through the completion of middle school, junior high, or high school, as described in the act. (Section 167.826)

For any district that operates an unaccredited school, the education authority for the county in which the district is located must designate at least one accredited district to which the district must provide transportation for transfer students. (Section 167.826)

When costs associated with the provision of special education and related services to a student with a disability exceed the tuition amount, the transfer student's district of residence is responsible for paying the excess costs to the receiving district. When the receiving district is a component district of a special school district, the transfer student's district of residence must contract with the special school district for the entirety of the costs to provide special education and related services, excluding transportation. The special school district may contract with a district operating an unaccredited school for the provision of transportation. A special school district must continue to provide special education and related services, with the exception of transportation, to a student with a disability transferring from a district operating an unaccredited school within the same or a different component district. (Section 167.826)

When the St. Louis City School District operates an unaccredited school, it is responsible for the provision of special education and related services, including transportation to students with disabilities. A special school district may contract with the St. Louis City School District, as described in the act. (Section 167.826)

Regardless of whether transportation is identified as a related service, a receiving district that is not part of a special school district is not responsible for providing transportation. A district operating an unaccredited school may contract with a receiving district that is not part of a special school district for transportation. When districts other than St. Louis City operate unaccredited schools, they may contract with a receiving district that is not part of a special school district for the reimbursement of special education services. (Section 167.826)

By August 1, 2015, and by January 1 annually, each district in the same or an adjoining county as an unaccredited district must report to the appropriate regional education authority the number of its available enrollment slots in accredited schools by grade level. Each district operating an unaccredited school must report the number of available enrollment slots in the district's accredited schools. Each charter school with an annual performance report score of seventy percent or greater in the same or adjoining county as a district operating an unaccredited school must report the number of available enrollment slots. (Section 167.827)

Each education authority with a district operating an unaccredited school in its geographic area must make information and assistance available to parents who intend to transfer their child using one of the transfer options. Parents who intend to transfer their child must send initial notification to the appropriate education authority by March 1. The education authority will assign transfer students, as space allows. When assigning students to charter schools, the education authority must coordinate with each charter school and its admissions process if capacity is insufficient to enroll all students who submit a timely application. The education authority will give first priority to students who live in the same household with family members within the first or second degree of consanguinity or affinity who have already transferred and apply to transfer to the same accredited school. If insufficient enrollment slots are available for a student to transfer, that student will receive first priority the following school year. The authority is only able to disrupt student and parent choice for transfers if a receiving district's, receiving charter school's, virtual school of choice's, or the virtual public school's available slots are requested by more students than there are slots available. The authority must consider the following factors in assigning schools: the student's or parent's choice of the receiving school (most important); the best interests of the student; and distance and travel time. The authority must not consider student academic performance; student free and reduced lunch status; or athletics. (Section 167.827)

An education authority may deny a transfer to a student, who in the most recent school year, has been suspended from school two or more times or has been suspended for an act of school violence, as described in the act. (Section 167.827)

These provisions are similar to provisions contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014).

REGIONAL EDUCATION AUTHORITIES: This act creates three separate regional education authorities to coordinate student transfers, one for the St. Louis region, a second authority for the Kansas City area, and a third authority for the rest of the state. Each authority will consist of five members who must be residents of their covered area, as described in the act, appointed by the Governor with the advice and consent of the Senate, who will serve for a term of six years. The Education Authority must coordinate and collaborate with local districts and local governments for the student transfers. Parents who want to transfer their child must notify the appropriate regional education authority by March 1. The education authority will assign students to districts using an admissions process, as described in the act.

These provisions are similar to provisions contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014). (Sections 167.830 to 167.845)

DEFINITIONS: Definitions governing the student transfer portions of this act are provided. (Section 167.848)

ONLINE TUTORING SERVICES THROUGH A PUBLIC LIBRARY: A school district may enter into a contract with a public library to provide online tutoring services through a third party vendor or a non-profit organization for the district's students. Tutoring services must be conducted through compatible computers to participating students who have a library card, both within and without the public library facility.

Online tutoring services may include assistance with homework, collaboration and study tools in various school subjects, access to writing assistance productivity software, and test preparation tools.

A contract may allow dedicated access to assistance during specified hours of the day and specified days of the week. A contract may allow students to submit questions to tutors or join online study groups.

Online tutoring services must be designed and implemented to protect student privacy, prohibit voice communication between the parties, and prohibit face-to-face visual communication. In addition, employees of third party vendors or nonprofit organizations with which a public library has contracted for the tutoring services are prohibited from soliciting personally identifiable information from participating students.

Any entity offering tutoring services must maintain an archive of all communications between students and tutors for two years.

This section is substantially similar to a provision contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014) and SB 993 (2014). (Section 170.215)

PARENT PORTALS: This act creates the Parent Portal Fund in the state treasury. Moneys in the fund may be used to provide financial assistance to districts to establish and maintain a parent portal so parents may have access to educational information and access to student data via mobile technology.

This section is identical to a provision contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014). (Section 170.320)

SCHOOL LEARNING TIME: The school board of any unaccredited district, provisionally accredited district, or district with a three year average annual performance report score consistent with a classification of unaccredited or provisionally accredited, may, by a majority vote, increase the length of the school day and also increase the number of instruction hours above the statutory minimum. This act creates the Extended Learning Time Fund in the state treasury. Moneys in the fund will be used for schools that extend the length of the school day or hours of instruction.

This section is identical to a provision contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014). (Section 171.031)

SCHOOL BUILDINGS: Each district that owns a building that is not occupied must prepare and send a public notice to each district taxpayer of the status of each district-owned building that is not occupied. The notice must include the address of each building and the annual cost of maintaining it. The district must post this information on its website. A district's building will be deemed "occupied" if it is used for the education of children between the ages of four and twenty-one for at least three hours a day for a school term. (Section 177.015)

This act requires any district that owns buildings that are vacant and unused for classroom instruction to obtain an outside appraisal and prepare a cost estimate for the building's refurbishment to bring it into compliance with health, safety, and occupancy code. Buildings must be publicly listed for sale between September 1, 2015 and October 1, 2015. Any buildings that are not sold during this time will be sold at auction, as described in the act. (Section 1)

CHILDREN'S SERVICES FUND: In St. Louis County, if there is an unaccredited or provisionally accredited school district, up to five percent of each fiscal year's revenues in the Children's Services Fund must be devoted to a grant program to deliver services to schools in those districts. The Children's Community Services Fund board of directors must undertake a needs assessment for any such school district within ninety days. The needs assessment must be used as a basis for contracting of services. The board of directors must appoint one of its members to a direct school service coordinating committee. Additional members of the direct service coordinating committee. The committee must provide recommendations and oversight to the program of contracted services. The use of funds is subject to an audit. This provision will terminate after fiscal year 2017.

This section is substantially similar to a provision contained in CCS/HCS/SCS/SBs 493 et al. (2014) and is similar to HB 2299 (2014). (Section 210.861)

This act contains an emergency clause.

MICHAEL RUFF

SSA 2 FOR SA 1, AS AMENDED: THIS AMENDMENT REMOVES THE PROVISIONS IN 162.1250.4 PERMITTING A STUDENT ENROLLED IN A DISTRICT IN THE SAME OR AN ADJOINING COUNTY AS A DISTRICT OPERATING AN UNACCREDITED SCHOOL TO ENROLL IN A VIRTUAL SCHOOL OF CHOICE. INSTEAD, THIS AMENDMENT PERMITS A STUDENT ENROLLED IN AN UNACCREDITED DISTRICT, A PROVISIONALLY ACCREDITED DISTRICT, OR A DISTRICT WITH A THREE-YEAR AVERAGE ANNUAL PERFORMANCE REPORT SCORE CONSISTENT WITH UNACCREDITED OR PROVISIONALLY ACCREDITED TO ENROLL IN A VIRTUAL SCHOOL OF CHOICE.

SA 2: THIS SENATE AMENDMENT ALLOWS TRANSFER STUDENTS TO ENROLL IN A CHARTER SCHOOL IN ANOTHER DISTRICT FOR WHICH THERE IS NO ANNUAL PERFORMANCE REPORT SCORE BECAUSE THE SCHOOL HAS NOT BEEN IN OPERATION FOR THREE SCHOOL YEARS SO THAT THE DEPARTMENT OF ELEMENTARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION MAY GENERATE AN APR. WHEN THE DEPARTMENT DOES GENERATE AN APR FOR SUCH A SCHOOL, IF THE SCORE IS LESS THAN SEVENTY, ANY STUDENTS WHO PREVIOUSLY TRANSFERRED TO IT MAY REMAIN ENROLLED.

SA 3, AS AMENDED: THIS SENATE AMENDMENT LIMITS THE APPLICABILITY OF SECTION 1 (SALE AND DISPOSAL OF VACANT SCHOOL BUILDINGS) TO THE ST. LOUIS CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT, THE KANSAS CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT, AND DISTRICTS IN ST. LOUIS COUNTY AND ONLY WHEN SUCH DISTRICTS ARE EITHER UNACCREDITED, PROVISIONALLY ACCREDITED, OR HAVE A THREE-YEAR AVERAGE ANNUAL PERFORMANCE REPORT SCORE THAT IS CONSISTENT WITH A CLASSIFICATION OF UNACCREDITED OR PROVISIONALLY ACCREDITED.

SA 5: THIS AMENDMENT MODIFIES PROVISIONS RELATING TO SCHOOL DIRECTORS FOR THE ST. JOSEPH SCHOOL DISTRICT.

SECTION 160.671: THIS AMENDMENT CREATES A PROCEDURE FOR RECALLING SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS IN THE ST. JOSEPH SCHOOL DISTRICT. A RECALL ELECTION SHALL BE HELD UPON THE SUBMISSION OF A PETITION SIGNED BY AT LEAST THREE HUNDRED REGISTERED VOTERS OF THE DISTRICT.

IF A MAJORITY OF VOTERS VOTE TO RETAIN THE SCHOOL BOARD MEMBER AT ISSUE, THE MEMBER SHALL REMAIN IN OFFICE AND CANNOT BE SUBJECT TO ANOTHER RECALL ELECTION DURING HIS OR HER TERM. IF A MAJORITY OF VOTERS VOTE TO REMOVE THE MEMBER, THE SUCCESSOR MEMBER WILL BE CHOSEN BY THE BUCHANAN COUNTY COMMISSION.

SECTION 162.471: THIS AMENDMENT REQUIRES THAT ANY VACANCIES ON THE ST. JOSEPH SCHOOL DISTRICT'S SCHOOL BOARD BE FILLED BY THE BUCHANAN COUNTY COMMISSION.

SECTION 162.481: CURRENTLY, THE ST. JOSEPH SCHOOL DISTRICT SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS SERVE A TERM OF SIX YEARS. THIS ACT ESTABLISHES THAT, UPON EXPIRATION OF ANY TERM AFTER AUGUST 28, 2015, THE TERM OF OFFICE WILL BE FOR THREE YEARS.

SECTION 162.491: THIS AMENDMENT PROVIDES THAT A CANDIDATE FOR SCHOOL BOARD IN THE ST. JOSEPH SCHOOL DISTRICT DOES NOT NEED TO SUBMIT A PETITION WITH SIGNATURES. INSTEAD, A CANDIDATE MUST FILE A DECLARATION OF CANDIDACY WITH THE BOARD SECRETARY.

SA 7: THIS SENATE AMENDMENT EXPANDS THE AREAS THAT THE SCHOOL TRANSFER AND IMPROVEMENT TASK FORCE MUST STUDY TO INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING: OPTIONS FOR COMPREHENSIVE SCHOOL QUALITY INDICATORS LEADING TO STUDENT SUCCESS; OPTIONS FOR SCHOOL QUALITY REVIEW MODELS BASED ON SUCCESSFUL REVIEW MODELS CURRENTLY IN USE; OPTIONS FOR LOCALLY-CREATED ASSESSMENT AND ACCOUNTABILITY SYSTEMS; AND BEST PRACTICES IN PARENT AND COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT.

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