SCS/HB 1856 - This act establishes the "Extended Learning Opportunities Act".
Beginning with the 2023-2024 school year, each local school board and charter school shall routinely inform students and parents of the ability to earn credit through extended learning opportunities, which the act defines as out-of-classroom learning experiences approved by a local school board or a charter school to provide enrichment, career readiness skills, or other approved educational opportunities.
Public schools and charter schools may assist students and parents in enrolling in such programs. Such opportunities shall not require the permission of the student's school so long as the student and at least one parent sign an agreement detailing all program requirements.
Extended learning opportunities shall count as credit toward graduation requirements and the achievement of state standards. Students shall submit a written request and proof of completion to a school administrator to receive credit.
Each local school district and charter school shall adopt, distribute, and implement policies related to the approval of extended learning opportunities by outside entities, a list of approved entities, a process for requesting credit, criteria for the approval of extended learning opportunities by districts and charter schools, and criteria for awarding a certificate of completion and credit.
Entities approved by the Board shall be qualified to offer extended learning opportunities for all districts and charter schools.
A student awarded a certificate of completion and credit shall be considered to have completed all coursework for the particular course of study. Opportunities that satisfy all required coursework for a high school course shall count toward credit for graduation.
Policies and procedures adopted by the Board and by schools shall provide students an equal opportunity to participate in extended learning opportunities and shall satisfy existing timelines and requirements for transcribing and reporting credits.
This act is substantially similar to a provision in the re-perfected HB 2325 (2022) and similar to a provision in the perfected HCS/HB 1750 (2022), a provision in HCS/HB 1753 (2022), and SCS/SB 1051 (2022).