Current Status Bill Number:
3453Type of Legislation: General Bill GBIntroducing Body: HouseIntroduced Date: 19970213Primary Sponsor: McMahandAll Sponsors: McMahand, F. Smith, Meacham, Knotts, Neal, Mack, Maddox, Stille, Haskins, Young-Brickell, Parks, Gourdine, Moody-Lawrence, McLeodDrafted Document Number: egm\18563djc.97Companion Bill Number: 279Residing Body: HouseCurrent Committee: Ways and Means Committee 30 HWMSubject: School districts to develop alternative school for student expelled for more than one week
Body Date Action Description Com Leg Involved ______ ________ _______________________________________ _______ ____________ House 19980402 Committed to Committee 30 HWM House 19980331 Debate adjourned until Wednesday, 19980401 House 19980326 Request for debate by Representative Walker Harrell Littlejohn F. Smith J. Hines McMahand Cotty Davenport Allison Rodgers Stuart J.Smith Scott Moody- Lawrence Sandifer Martin Stille Townsend House 19980326 Co-Sponsor added (Rule 5.2) by Rep. McLeod House 19980326 Co-Sponsor removed (Rule 5.2) by Rep. Hamilton House 19980324 Committee report: Favorable with 21 HEPW amendment House 19970213 Introduced, read first time, 21 HEPW referred to CommitteeView additional legislative information at the LPITS web site.
March 24, 1998
Introduced by Reps. McMahand, F. Smith, Meacham, Knotts, Neal, Mack, Maddox, Stille, Haskins, Young-Brickell, Hamilton, Parks, Gourdine and Moody-Lawrence
S. Printed 3/24/98--H.
Read the first time February 13, 1997.
THE COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION AND PUBLIC WORKS
To whom was referred a Bill (H. 3453), to amend the Code of Laws of South Carolina, 1976, by adding Section 59-63-243 so as to require school districts to develop alternative schools, etc., respectfully
That they have duly and carefully considered the same, and recommend that the same do pass with amendment:
Amend the bill, as and if amended, by striking all after the enacting words and inserting:
/SECTION 1. Chapter 63, Title 59 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
Section 59-63-1300. The General Assembly finds that a child who does not complete his education is greatly limited in obtaining employment, achieving his full potential, and becoming a productive member of society. It is therefore the intent of this article to authorize district school boards throughout the State to establish alternative school programs. These programs shall be designed to meet the needs of students who have a history of disruptive behavior in school or who have committed a serious offense that warrants out-of-school suspension or expulsion from school according to the student conduct policies and behavior codes approved by the school board of trustees. It is further the intent of this article that cooperative agreements may be developed among school districts in order to implement innovative exemplary programs.
Section 59-63-1310. For the purposes of this article:
(1) 'Disruptive behavior' means behavior that interferes with the student's own learning or the educational process of others and requires attention and assistance beyond that which the traditional program can provide. It also means behavior that results in frequent conflicts of a disruptive nature while the student is under the jurisdiction of the school either in or out of the classroom or severely threatens the general welfare of students or others with whom the student comes into contact.
(2) 'Serious offense' means behavior which includes violence, possession of weapons or controlled substance, or harassment or verbal abuse of school personnel or other students.
Section 59-63-1320. Beginning with the school year 1998-99, the governing boards of all school districts shall establish, maintain, and operate, either individually or as a cooperative agreement among districts, alternative school programs for, but not limited to, the following categories of students in grades 6-12:
(1) Any student who has committed a serious offense which warrants suspension or expulsion from school according to the student conduct policies and behavior codes approved by the school board of trustees;
(2) any student referred to such alternative school program based upon a documented need for placement in the alternative school program by the school district, parent, legal guardian or custodian of student due to habitual exhibitions of disruptive behavior in violation of the student conduct policies and behavior codes approved by the school board of trustees;
(3) any student referred to such alternative school program based upon a documented need for placement in the alternative school program by the school district, parent, legal guardian or custodian of the student due to interference with the student's own learning or the educational process of others and requires attention and assistance beyond that which the traditional program can provide;
(4) Any student referred to such alternative school program by the dispositive order of a family court judge, with the consent of the local board of trustees.
Before a student may be placed in an alternative school program, a determination must be made by the local board that the written and distributed disciplinary policy of the district has been followed. Districts must establish clear guidelines and procedures for the placement of students into an alternative school program and at a minimum they shall prescribe due process procedures for disciplinary actions.
When students are being considered for placement in an alternative school program, districts must consider special education evaluation to ensure that the students are not eligible for special education services or a change in the current special educational placement.
If a student placed in an alternative school program enrolls in another school district before the expiration of the period of placement, the board of trustees of the district requiring the placement shall provide to the district in which the student enrolls, at the same time other records of the student are provided, information concerning the student's placement in an alternative school program. Upon review of the information, the district in which the student enrolls may continue the alternative education program placement or may allow the student to attend regular classes without completing the period of the placement.
Section 59-63-1340. Within the requirements of Section 59-1-440, alternative school programs may differ from traditional education programs and schools in scheduling, administrative structure, curriculum, or setting. Programs must develop a mission statement and shall focus on the educational and behavioral needs of the students to include individual student instruction plans, evaluations at regular intervals of the student's educational and behavioral progress, instructional methods in meeting academic standards, strict codes of student conduct, counseling, strategies to gain strong parental input and support, strategies to ensure students will adapt to a regular school setting upon departure from the alternative school program, and a time line for meeting the academic and conduct standards set.
The educational program for an alternative school must include the objectives of the adopted academic achievement standards in the core academic areas to ensure that the instructional program will enable students to make the transition to a regular school program or seek postsecondary education and to ensure that credit earned by students participating in the alternative school program can be transferred to either the sending public school or another public school in the State.
Section 59-63-1350. Each school district shall establish procedures for ensuring that teachers assigned to alternative school programs possess the pedagogical and content-related skills necessary to meet the needs of the student population. Each school board also shall ensure that adequate staff development activities are available for alternative school program faculty and staff and ensure that the faculty and staff participate in these activities. The State Department of Education in consultation with other appropriate entities shall provide assistance to school districts in the development of staff development programs which include best practices. These programs shall be made available to all district teachers.
Section 59-63-1360. Transportation for students attending the alternative school program shall be the responsibility of the sending school district.
Section 59-63-1370. A school district shall allocate to an alternative school program the same per student expenditure to include federal, state, and local funds that would be allocated to the student's school if the student were attending the student's regularly assigned school. This shall include any appropriate special education funding.
Specific alternative school program funds shall be provided by the General Assembly in the annual general appropriations act at an EFA weighting of 1.74 and shall be allocated to the districts of this State based on the average daily membership of the district and the EFA formula. These funds shall be used for the establishment, maintenance, and operation of alternative schools programs. Funds also may be used to provide for staff development needs pursuant to Section 59-63-1350.
Section 59-63-1380. The State Board of Education shall promulgate regulations for establishment, maintenance, and operation of alternative school programs to include clear procedures for annual alternative school program review and evaluation of its success. The regulations shall require the minimum amount of paperwork and reporting necessary to comply with this article.
Upon request of a school district, the State Department of Education shall provide the district informational material on developing an alternative school program that takes into consideration best practices."
SECTION 2. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor./
Renumber sections to conform.
Amend totals and title to conform.
RONALD P. TOWNSEND, for Committee.
ESTIMATED FISCAL IMPACT ON GENERAL FUND EXPENDITURES IS:
An Additional Cost to the General Fund of the State as Shown Below
FIRST YEAR GENERAL FUNDS: $ 17,372,684
ANNUALLY THEREAFTER: $ 17,372,684
The fiscal impact of this bill results from the funding requirement of Section 59-63-1370 which states that alternative schools shall be funded at an Education Finance Act (EFA) weighting of 1.74 based on average daily membership. It is estimated that the fiscal impact of the bill on the General Fund of the State would be approximately $17.4 million the first year.
The number of students eligible for alternative schools programs based on the criteria as contained in the bill is estimated 23,400 or 7% of the students in grades 6-12. Department of Education (SDE) estimates the current average EFA weighting for students in these grades at 1.25. The current Base Student Cost for FY 1998-99 is $1,879. The state and local match for EFA funding is 70/30. Therefore, increasing the EFA weighting by .49 (1.74 minus 1.25) for these students would result in the need for an additional $15,081,230. Appropriate fringe benefits associated with these funds is estimated to $2,291,454, for a total fiscal impact of $17,372,684.
Local school districts provide 30% of the total EFA funding requirement. Therefore, the total fiscal impact on local school districts would be $7,445,436.
Frank A. Rainwater
Office of State Budget
TO AMEND THE CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, BY ADDING SECTION 59-63-243 SO AS TO REQUIRE SCHOOL DISTRICTS TO DEVELOP ALTERNATIVE SCHOOLS AND TO REQUIRE A CHILD EXPELLED FOR MORE THAN ONE WEEK TO BE PLACED IN A PRIVATE OR ALTERNATIVE SCHOOL.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. The 1976 Code is amended by adding:
"Section 59-63-243. School districts must develop alternative schools and at any time a student is expelled from school for more than one week, the student must be placed in a private or alternative school."
SECTION 2. This act takes effect July 1, 1997.