House Education Committee

 

2004 Minutes

 

January 14, 2004
January 15, 2004 - Subcommittee 8:30 a.m
January 15, 2004 - Subcommittee 9:00 a.m
January 19, 2004 - Subcommittee
January 19, 2004 - Subcommittee
January 20, 2004
January 21, 2004
January 22, 2004
January 23, 2004
January 27, 2004
January 28, 2004
January 28, 2004 - Subcommittee
January 29, 2004
January 30, 2004

February 2, 2004
February 3, 2004
February 4, 2004
February 5, 2004
February 9, 2004
February 10, 2004 - 8:30 A.M. Meeting
February 10, 2004 - 10:35 A.M. Meeting
February 11, 2004
February 12, 2004
February 13, 2004
February 16, 2004
February 17, 2004
February 18, 2004
February 19, 2004
February 20, 2004
February 23, 2004
February 24, 2004 - Joint Meeting
February 25, 2004
February 26, 2004
February 27, 2004

March 1, 2004
March 2, 2004
March 3, 2004
March 4, 2004
March 5, 2004
March 8, 2004
March 9, 2004
March 10, 2004
March 12, 2004
March 16, 2004
March 18, 2004
March 19, 2004
March 20, 2004

November 5, 2004 - Joint Subcommittee Meeting

DATE: January 14, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please refer to the attached sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:07 A.M. with a quorum being present.
Chairman Barraclough began by sharing with the committee "what makes him tick", and what he hopes to accomplish as the new committee chairman. He explained that he lived through the depression and was in the Navy during World War II where he experienced being among the lowest echelon. He quickly realized that education was a treasured and valued asset, and when he got out of the Navy he attended the University of Idaho to become a Certified Professional Hydrologist. Representative Barraclough said he learned a long time ago that there are no great people ­ we are all ordinary people. He has been a legislator for 12 years, serving on the Environmental Affairs, Resources and Conservation, and Education committees.
Chairman Barraclough stated he approaches decisions by asking himself, "how can I do the right thing"? He stressed he wants the committee to work as a team and set an example by accepting that individuals can have different feelings on issues, yet still work together. He feels the refusal to work together makes us look ridiculous to the public. He said he does not believe in holding legislation or limiting testimony.

He and Vice Chairman Lake will be holding weekly meetings with the Senate Education Committee Chairman and Co-Chairman, and he mentioned the joint meetings next week with the Senate Education Committee to address No Child Left Behind, ISAT and Charter Schools. He explained that charter schools are spending less money per student, have parental involvement, and produce higher scores. On all of these issues we need to sort out what we can support and what we can't.

Chairman Barraclough said he believes the Idaho Legislature truly supports education. Sixty-three percent of Idaho's budget goes to education and there should be reviews of how the money is spent and there should be accountability in the product. He stressed that schools need to drop the idea that they could have done a good job if they'd had more money. He provided several charts from 1984-1996 that showed public school funding being increased and SAT scores going down. He wants to support and encourage quality educators and work to improve education where warranted.

He voiced his feelings about the Idaho Education Association opposing Republicans and the fact that some school facilities and resources are being used to do so. He stated that threats of suits only allow bad teachers to stay in our schools.

He closed by saying he wants to do what's right and that he is a coordinator of what this committee will do.
INTRODUCTIONS: Each committee member was asked to introduce themselves.

Vice Chairman Lake stated that his goal is to prepare better educated students. He feels we have been content too long with just exiting students out the door.

Representative Jones mentioned that he is not an educator by trade but is a very strong supporter of education. He served eight years on the National Education Panel.

Representative Trail took a moment to introduce Sarah Mahaffy, House Education Page from Moscow, Idaho. Sarah said she is a senior at Moscow High School and plans on majoring in Elementary Education. Representative Trail said he has been active in education for years, taught Ag Education at Washington State and is involved in developing Ag education worldwide. He indicated he would have several pieces of legislation this year, and he has learned that good legislation does not always make it through the process in one session.

Representative Bradford explained that he came to this committee without a lot of education himself and feels he can show others the wisdom in getting a good education. He said there are many great teachers in the state, and we all need to strive to make education better.

Representative Block spoke about how important education is to her ­ she was a K-4 teacher for many years. She stated that education is the future and we need to work cooperatively towards the best education possible.

Representative Rydalch mentioned that she served in the Senate for a number of years and taught Journalism for 10 years. She said what she would like to see changed is the process or the refining of the process. She is grateful for what the State Board is doing and feels that once requirements are established it doesn't matter where the students receive their required education ­ not the Legislature's job to tell parents where students can attend school.

Representative Bauer stated it is an honor and privilege to serve on this committee. He pointed out that we often times hear the negative and the criticism but there is a lot of positive going on. He mentioned an internship program at Sky View High School and also the progress Notus is making raising their test scores by teachers teaming up to help students who are struggling.

Representative Eberle indicated that he appreciated the Chairman's opening comments. He came to this committee after his experience serving on two school boards and feels that school boards are losing power due to Federal regulations and control. He believes Idaho needs to take back this control.

Representative Cannon related a story about a card game where one of the players accused another player (a gunfighter) of cheating. The player was killed by the gunfighter. When the card player's wife asked the judge to find the gunfighter guilty, he said her husband was guilty because he stood and talked rather than sitting and thinking.

Representative Garrett said she appreciated the opening remarks and she remembers well when her father, who was a minister, asked people to stand up and testify. She explained she has been out testifying about the good going on in our schools. She stressed we should be celebrating and rejoicing on how far we've come on the accountability issues.

Representative Kulczyk indicated that in 1996 he became a lobbyist for the Idaho Family Forum. He believes in educational choices and giving parents tools. He explained he has been working on getting a charter school started, and it may take up to a year for approval under the current system.

Representative Nielsen stated that he agrees with the comments about choice. He also feels that the dollars should follow the kids, and his biggest concern is about financing schools. He stressed that resources play a big role in boosting the economy and a good economy is vital to help fund schools.

Representative Bayer explained that he is the "newbie" who replaced Representative Tilman in District 21. He said he is a Medical Research Scientist, and he was educated in private and public schools. He indicated that he has concerns about accountability and efficiencies.

Representative Sayler said he has spent 50 years either as a student or a teacher, and said being a teacher doesn't give inherent wisdom about education. He feels we need to define the "best education possible" and not change for change sake ­ look at the evidence to make changes. He is supportive of working together, more harmony and decency.

Representative Naccarato supported the Chairman's comments about bringing divisions together and said we need to look at the State Board and the Department. He has concerns with the ISAT and feels if the tests and scores are not valid we should not continue spending funds unnecessarily.

Representative Andersen said he spent 20 years on the farm and in school and then taught school for 10 years, teaching a variety of subjects and coaching. He spent 24 years working for the Idaho Education Association and the last four years as an arbitrator for the Better Business Bureau. He feels we are at a point where we can move forward, but we need everyone at the table. We need to understand what quality education means.

Representative Boe said she appreciates the fact that the Chairman wants to work on the differences between the House and Senate and the State Board and the Department, but she feels we also need to work on differences with the IEA. She stated that in her district that the IEA supports both Republicans and Democrats. She feels we need accountability from students and teachers, and we need to provide a thorough education that will equip students to be good citizens.

Chairman Barraclough asked John Watts to relate a conversation they'd had about how to design the best system and who best to design it.

John Watts, Veritas Advisors, introduced himself and stated that he has also been retained by the Idaho School Boards Association for the past three years. He explained that there are five entities setting education policy in Idaho: the Governor, the State Superintendent of Schools, 105 Legislators, the State Board of Education and the local school board trustees. He said the best way to determine the best system is to lock members of all five entities in a room to design a plan and the goals to work towards. Plans are being made for an Education Summit.

Other agency representatives who introduced themselves were Randy Thompson, Chief Academic Officer, State Board of Education; Teresa Molitor, Lobbyist, IACI; Carissa Miller, Program Manager for Accountability, State Board of Education;Luci Willits, Communications Officer, State Board of Education; Rachel Rasmussen, Intern, State Board of Education; Connie Richey, Lobbyist, Idaho State University; Tim Hill, Bureau Chief, Finance and Transportation, State Department of Education; Jim Shackelford, Executive Director for Idaho Education Association; Robin Nettinga, Director of Public Policy, Idaho Education Association; Jerry Helgeson, President, Meridian Education Association; Mike Friend, Executive Director, Idaho Association of School Administrators; and Phil Homer, Idaho Association of School Administrators.
Vice Chairman Lake informed the committee about the two subcommittees that would be reviewing the committee rules starting tomorrow. He explained that he would lead the subcommittee dealing with graduation requirements, and Representative Trail will lead the subcommittee that will review all the remaining rules. The subcommittees will put together their recommendation to be presented to the committee of the whole to be voted on.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 10:28 A.M.




DATE: January 15, 2004
TIME: 8:30 A.M.
PLACE: Room 408
MEMBERS: Chairman Trail, Representatives Bradford, Rydalch, Cannon, Garrett, Nielsen, Andersen, Naccarato
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please refer to the presenters highlighted below and the attached committee sign-in sheet.
Rep. Trail, subcommittee chair, called the meeting to order at 8:35 a.m.
DOCKET NO.

08-0202-0301

Karen Gustafson, Idaho State Board of Education, gave a brief overview of Docket No. 08-020-0301. The current rules relating to Idaho's pupil transportation support program became effective July 1, 2002. This rule is essentially a clean up of that comprehensive rulemaking. The rule clarifies current rule language related to 60-day inspections of school buses and withdrawal from service. There were two public hearings held. One was held during the negotiated rulemaking process and one after the proposed rules were published. A total of three people attended the hearings. Ms. Gustafson said that changes to this policy were made with school bus manufacturers recommendations.

Rod McKnight, State Department of Education, fielded questions from committee members.

A question was asked regarding to the process that was in place to identify deficiencies in the buses before this new rule. Mr. McKnight stated that personnel did spot inspections and that the statute was followed if they needed to be fixed or removed. The new rule adds language which will reaffirm the statute. He also stated that school districts are required to do the 60-day inspections. In answer to a question regarding a cost to the school districts, he said there was none.

Mr. McKnight also stated that there has been confusion at the school district level regarding inspections and these rules will help with clarification. In response to a questions about busses being in service, Mr. McKnight said that if a bus is available it is in service.

MOTION: Rep. Garrett made a motion to recommend to the full committee that 08-0202-0301 be approved. Rep. Nielsen seconded the motion.

Motion approved unanimously.



DOCKET NO.

08-0202-0303



Karen Gustafson, Idaho State Board of Education, gave a brief overview of Docket No. 08-0202-0303. The major purpose of these rules was to remove information that was previously located in an incorporated document and to put that text directly into the rule itself. The amendments make the Code of Ethics clearer, less ambiguous, and more specific.

Negotiated rulemaking was not conducted because this rule change is not controversial in nature and other interested parties would not be harmed as a result of this change. There were no hearings requested or held. Some comments were received and those were positive. Ms. Gustafson stated that to their knowledge there are no outstanding issues.

Keith Potter, State Department of Education, stood for questions from the committee.

In response to a question regarding hearings, Mr. Potter stated that there was a teleconference in the summer. He said that this was a two-year process and the IEA, OSBE, and the IASA were contacted.

In answer to a question regarding whether a brochure would be produced, Mr. Potter said they would probably produce some sort of booklet and it would also be available on a disc.

Mr. Potter said that the major changes to the code of ethics are found on Page 9 and 10 of the rules and repeated again on Pages 15 and 16. He also stated that on Page 12, Principle 2 is more explicit and defines acts of cruelty.

There was a question regarding Principle 2 about identifying issues of conduct and whether this conflicts with students who need discipline. Mr. Potter stated that if there is a problem then there is a due process that is followed when a written complaint is made. This would go to a panel who decides if there are sufficient grounds. This process can take as little as two months or up to a year. A question was asked if this would be detrimental to the teacher if they have to wait that long for their due process. Mr. Potter said that is a possibility. He said that anytime that there is a complaint they encourage people to work through the local entities first.

There were real concerns by some of the committee members that the new rules were too specific and derogatory. It was felt that the code of ethics now in use is worded more positively. It was also felt that with the new rules being so specific that it is opening a pandora's box in the area of child abuse and especially emotional abuse. It was asked if these vague terms wouldn't be clearly defined in law. Mr. Potter said that they had been reviewed by their legal council.

There was a question regarding the rule on Page 13, Principle 3, and what a teacher does on their own time. A concern was voiced about not wanting someone who is teaching children to indulge in drugs even on their own time. Mr. Potter said (and he gave an example) that this type of behavior would fall under a law case. It was stated that this could be handled at the school board level­by getting teachers who live within the standards set. Mr. Potter said that was correct that it is the school board who takes the first action before the state comes into it.

Mr. Phil Homer, IASA, stated they have no negative comments on the issue.

Mr. Jim Shackelford, IEA, said they are a strong supporter of the Professional Standards Commission; however, they are in disagreement with the new rules. He stated that the old code of ethics approaches instructions to the teaching profession as to what conduct should be not what shouldn't. The IEA feels that some of the rules leave an ambiguous interpretation and they would prefer more specific examples. Mr. Shackelford said this code does not just include teachers but everyone with a certificate. He said the IEA would like additional time to work with the Professional Standards Commission. It was felt by some committee members that two years should be enough time.

It was asked if this does not pass what would happen. Mr. Potter said they would use the current code of ethics. Another question was asked about how many actions against teachers had taken place in the last year and would this new code of ethics change that in any way. Mr. Potter said they had 17 cases with 5-6 licenses revoked. He also said that with this new code the number of cases might not change but the action might.

A point was made that this is a highly visible profession and any guidelines that can be given to help the ethical teachers would be a help to keep the profession honorable.

MOTION: Rep. Cannon made a motion to put off a vote on Docket No.08-0202-0303 until we have an opportunity to study it.
SUBSTITUTE MOTION: Rep. Garrett made a substitute motion to send Docket No. 08-0202-0303 back to the full committee with no recommendation.
AMENDED SUBSTITUTE MOTION: Rep. Andersen made an amended substitute motion to table Docket No. 08-0202-0303 and come back to it.



The Amended Substitute Motion passed by a 5 to 3 vote with Representatives Trail, Cannon, Garrett, Andersen, and Naccarato voting aye; and Representatives Bradford, Rydalch, and Nielsen voting Nay.

DOCKET NO.

08-0202-0304

Karen Gustafson, Idaho State Board of Education, presented Docket No. 08-0202-0304. This docket has to do with the re-authorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, titled the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB), provided for sweeping reform in education. A key component of the Act is a requirement relating to the quality of instruction in classrooms. To this end the Act requires that schools must assure that a "Highly Qualified Teacher" in core academic areas is in every classroom by 2005-2006 (Title 1, Section 1119).

In response, the Idaho's MOST committee created three teacher certification routes as alternatives that will meet the requirements of NCLB. Because of the federal requirements the present rules addressing alternative certification will expire July of 2006.

The Teacher Preparation Task Force met approximately 18 times and the MOST Advisory Group met 24 times since November of 2000. A total of 5 public hearings were held and were held via statewide video conference. There were three questions regarding para-professionals but no comments positive or negative.

Mr. Keith Potter, SDE, stood for questions. It was asked if these three alternate routes meet federal standards and if there is adequate time for the teachers to actually accomplish this. Mr. Potter said yes they meet federal standards and if we are not in compliance we then can have funding cut. He also said that over the 3-year period there should be time.

Some concerns were that we are trapping ourselves into a flow of funds that might be hard to budget and that it might be especially hard on smaller school districts. It was noted that this is one of the largest underfunded mandates.

Mr. Jim Shackelford, IEA, said that they support this.

MOTION: Rep. Andersen made a motion to recommend to the full committee that Docket No. 08-0202-0304 be adopted. Seconded by Rep. Bradford. A roll call vote was requested. The motion passed by a 6 to 2 vote. Rep. Rydalch and Rep. Nielsen voted nay.
DOCKET NO.

08-0202-0302

Mr. Keith Potter, SDE, presented Docket No. 08-0202-0302. This removes the requirement that a teacher is required to have an endorsement in Biology, Physics, Chemistry, or Geology in order to receive a Natural Science endorsement. Allows teachers who possess an endorsement in Agricultural Science and Technology, complete a minimum of 20 hours of course work plus a lab in the Biological Sciences, Physical Science, and Earth Science, and receive a passing score on the Praxis test, to receive an endorsement in Natural Science.

In answer to a question, Mr. Potter said that this testing is for all new teachers or those moving to Idaho. It also includes those teachers who have let their certificates laps. A copy of the Idaho Statutes which shows the fees was passed out to each member (attached).

It was asked if all teachers need to do these two things and Mr. Potter answered this only relates to Natural Science.

Mr. Jim Shackelford, stated that the IEA is in support of this rule.

Mr. Phil Homer, said that the IASA is also in support.

MOTION: Rep. Cannon made a motion to accept Docket No. 08-0202-0302. Seconded by Rep. Nielsen. The motion passed unanimously.
Rep. Trail stated that there are still two rules that need to be heard and that the ethics rule needs to be reheard. The Sub-committee will meet on Monday, January 19 at 9 a.m.
ADJOURN: The meeting was adjourned at 10:50 a.m.




DATE: January 15, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Subcommittee Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Block, Bauer, Eberle, Kulczyk, Bayer, Boe, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

All subcommittee members were present.
GUESTS: Please refer to the presenters highlighted below and the attached committee sign-in sheet.
Representative Lake, Subcommittee Chairman, called the meeting to order at 9:06 A.M.
DOCKET NO.

08-0203-0301

Ms. Karen Gustafson, Policy & Governmental Affairs Officer, Office of the State Board of Education (OSBE), briefed the subcommittee on Docket No. 08-0203-0301. She mentioned that the Board embarked on creation of new provisions for standards, assessment, and accountability in 1997. Standards have been adopted and are being implemented in all Idaho public schools and a comprehensive assessment program was put in place in 2001. The final step is establishing accountability measures that will tie the effort together and ensure compliance with the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB).

She said these rules add proficiency to the Idaho Standards Achieve-ment Test (ISAT) in order for the state to meet the accountability requirements of NCLB. They include provisions for students who are unable to attain proficiency by graduation so that they may appeal to the local school district and be given an opportunity to meet the standards through some other locally established approved mechanism. The rules allow for adaptation of the test to assist Limited English Proficient (LEP) students. It establishes that students will take the ISAT in their 10th grade year and can retake, up to eight times, the portions of the test they did not pass. The rules also define adequate yearly progress or AYP. The rule further outlines a phased in approach for a graduation requirement that would allow some exemptions in 2006, fewer exemptions in 2007, and full implementation in 2008 and it clarifies that the ISAT does not take effect until January 1, 2006. And finally, the rule clarifies the definition of full academic year.

Negotiated rule making was conducted in May 2003 by the Accountability Commission, and they held seven public meetings around the state to gather information on the formation of these rules. Nearly 200 people attended these meetings and offered input. The Board staff conducted a statewide public hearing video conference on October 16, 2003 at seven sites around the state with about 200 people attending. The Board also received nearly 200 written comments.

Based on comments received during the hearing process, the rule was further rewritten to clarify when and what measures local school boards can use as an alternate measure for the graduation requirement, and the Board removed the requirement that the ISAT include both a selected response section and a constructed response section.

Ms. Gustafson addressed several outstanding issues with ISAT and accountability:

Concern that ISAT is being used as a graduation requirement in general. The Board feels very strongly that an exit exam is the most effective way to ensure that our students are graduating with the needed skills and knowledge. The Education Council of the States research presented at the Albertson's Foundation in October suggests that raising the standards is the most effective way to increase performance.

Concern about validity and reliability ­ has the exit exam been tested? Board staff completed a rigorous and accepted process to build the tests and to ensure reliability ­ review is available on our website. An external review will be conducted this summer.

Concern that the test does not use multiple measures. The Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) baseline was set on a multiple choice test only. Introducing new elements at this point may cause potential problems because it could affect school and district AYP determinations.

Questions/concerns from the committee:

Were the oral and written comments received by the Board positive or negative? Ms. Gustafson said it was about half and half ­ written were positive where oral tended to be negative.

Why test using only multiple choice and why test only reading, writing and math? Dr. Randy Thompson, State Board of Education, explained the use of multiple choice only was to provide consistency and to provide a statistically sound basis for the exam that would be valid and reliable. This does not preclude the school districts from using other means of assessment, i.e. a portfolio. He said the evaluation of a student is viewed as a partnership with educators who are able to assess student's oral and other proficiencies. To comply with NCLB, AYP has to be evaluated for language arts, math and reading. The Board plans to add a science and other components to the ISAT.

CON Ms. Robin Nettinga, Director of Public Policy, Idaho Education Association (IEA), spoke in opposition to Docket No. 08-0203-0301. Ms. Nettinga stated that the concerns detailed by Ms. Gustafson reflect many of the concerns IEA has expressed in numerous presentations to the SBOE. Ms. Nettinga outlined the IEA's concerns as follows:

High Stakes Tests ­ The IEA believes the fact a student is required to pass the ISAT in order to graduate from high school makes that test a high stakes test, even though students may have multiple attempts to pass it.

Validity/Reliability ­ IEA continues to be concerned that the ISAT has not undergone an extensive external study to determine validity and reliability and that it is inappropriate for students to be held accountable for this piece of the system that has yet to be proven reliable and valid. Ms. Nettinga pointed out that Section 105.03 allows school districts to develop alternate measures as long as they meet specific criteria, but Section 105.03d requires these to be valid and reliable. She voiced a concern about what measures would be acceptable based on Dr. Thompson's earlier remarks about using only multiple choice tests because they are statistically valid and reliable.

Costs ­ IEA has always supported the creation of a standards-based system, yet they fear that the resources to ensure a quality system may not be there. They encourage the OSBE to include the estimated cost of achieving the goals they have outlined.

Dropout Rates ­ IEA has repeatedly shared their concern that high stakes/exit tests lead to increased dropout rates. A study from the Center on Education Policy titled "State High School Exit Exams Put to the Test"

cited at least three studies that offered a "moderate degree of evidence that exit exams are associated with higher dropout rates". That same study indicated that high stake exams might also negatively affect curriculum and instruction decisions.

When asked if she thought the fear of the high stakes test would go away because students have 8 chances to take the test, Ms. Nettinga said probably not ­ we have to remember we are dealing with children. She said students who have learning problems would probably see this as another failure.

Dr. Thompson and Carissa Miller, OSBE, responded to the following:

Will the ISAT affect the acceptance of the GED? The GED and the ISAT are two different sets of requirements, and the GED will not be affected by high school diploma requirements. The GED is accepted by the military and most Jr. Colleges. Boise State University and others are raising the entrance standards and most give their own entrance exams.

What research is available to support the use of a high stakes test? Most of the research is fairly new and has been done by the states. Ms. Nettinga said she would provide the members with copies of some research she had found.

Can a 9th grade student passing the test waive taking it in the 10th grade? Dr. Thompson said "no". Students can "bank" the portions of the ISAT they pass at 10th grade level for graduation.

Are we setting a bar of knowledge or trying to improve education? It is difficult to separate the two, but what the Board is trying to do is establish a minimum standard of competency. Idaho colleges are having to give 6,000 students remedial math. We need to warrant that students have requisite knowledge to move on to business or college.

How will Idaho know how they compare to other states? Based on the data gathered by many state, it should show if Idaho has set the standard too high or too low.

What are the ISAT requirements for home schools, charter schools, alternative schools and detention centers? Homeschoolers are given the option, by their school district, to take the ISAT. Most districts do not require homeschoolers to take the ISAT unless they want to participate in athletics or other extra-curricular activities. Charter schools and state run alternative schools are required to administer the ISAT. There is work to be done with alternative schools where students only attend for a portion of the year. The Board is working on this. Students in state operated detention centers will be required to take the ISAT, while those in private centers will not.

What is the difference between the ISAT and the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP)? Every student is required to take the ISAT test where the NAEP is a stratified exam taken by a sampling/ percentage of sub-populations with a school or district. A problem was brought up regarding the NAEP where districts don't have adequate participation of a sub-population because of absentees. Ms. Miller explained that schools are given extra weeks to comply in certain cases.

How can Limited English Proficient (LEP) students be expected to pass the ISAT? LEP students are given the test for three years in a row, but not included in the test results. Two additional years can be added if necessary. The percentages required for students to pass the tests will be increased over a 10 year period to reach the 90% proficiency, i.e. reading starts at 66% and math at 51%. Students must also attend the school for a full year to be included in the results. If a student moves to a district in January, they can participate in the test but will not be included in the results.

Wouldn't it be productive for the Legislators to be able to look at the ISAT so they can adequately address constituent questions and concerns? Dr. Thompson said that sample booklets can be provided and a hands-on demonstration can be arranged at Boise High School.

Dr. Clifford Green, Executive Director, Idaho School Boards Association (ISBA) addressed Representative Sayler's question about what concerns the ISBA has regarding the mandate (possibly unfunded mandate) from the state to the local districts. Dr. Green said ISBA supports appropriate, accurate and adequately funded assessment of student performance with the goal of improving student achievement. ISBA did, however, have some concerns about the validity and reliability of the ISAT. Dr. Green worked with the OSBE and now believes that given the data provided by the OSBE, Idaho has a valid and reliable test. The only issue that still remains is whether the Legislature will adequately fund remediation.
Dr. Bob Haley, Legislative Liaison, State Department of Education asked to speak to the committee. He explained he was not representing the Department with his comments today. He said the Albertson's Foundation has donated around $200 million dollars to Idaho schools in the past five years and test scores are not increasing. He said the Albertson's Board decided that before spending any more money they would call in a team of education experts. One of the experts, Dr. Doug Reeves, was asked if he had heard about the flap going on in Idaho regarding the ISAT. Dr. Reeves said Idaho is heading down a path of disaster. Idaho should not throw out the test, rather they should modify it to ensure it will hold up in court. Dr. Reeves went on to say that research shows when the tests are taken by students with poor attendance and who sluff off, they fail. He said 90% attendance and a "C" average in all courses must be required. Also giving students the option of passing 4 of the 5 elements will increase the chance for success.

Dr. Haley was asked to remind the members about Idaho's minimum requirements. Dr. Haley said there is no 90% attendance requirement in statute, but many of the districts have kept the requirement. The 90% attendance requirement and the "C" average were required by statute at one time and maybe these issues need to be revisited. He stressed that if ISAT is to be implemented, having an external validation will help it stand up in court. Dr. Haley stressed that it is Idaho's fault that the colleges are having to offer remedial math to 6,000 students. He said only four credits of math are required in high school and most students take these in 9th & 10th grade. By the time they take the SAT or college entrance exams, they have forgotten most of what they learned.

Dr. Thompson informed the subcommittee members that Ms. Miller is working on an RFP to have external validity of the ISAT performed.
ADJOURN: Representative Lake reminded the members that the subcommittee will continue the review of Docket No. 08-0203-0301 on Monday, January 19, 2004 at 9:00 A.M. There being no further business, Representative Lake adjourned the meeting at 10:40 A.M.




DATE: January 19, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Trail, Representatives Bradford, Rydalch, Cannon, Garrett, Nielsen, Andersen, Naccarato
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please refer to the presenters highlighted below and the attached committee sign-in sheet.
Rep. Trail called the meeting to order at 9:10 a.m.

Rep. Nielsen made a motion to accept Subcommitte A's minutes of January 15, 2004. Seconded by Rep Bradford. Motion passed.

DOCKET NO.

08-0202-0303



























MOTION:

Rep. Trail stated that the wording in Docket 08-0202-0303 was taken from the Georgia Professional Standards Commission's code of ethics. He also said that he received a letter from Dr. Bob West which states that the SDE, OSBE, and the IEA have resolved their concerns regarding the proposed rule change. (See attached letter).

Representatives Bradford, Cannon, and Garrett said that most of the educators that they talked with liked the clarification and are comfortable with the new code. Representatives Andersen and Trail said that the educators that they talked to still have some reservations.

Dr. Bob West, SDE, stated that the concerns of the Education Committee regarding the negative manner in which the rules list examples of unethical behavior for each of the ten ethics principles was worked out in a compromise with the SDE, IEA and OSBE. The booklet to be created by SDE will begin with positive statement from the State Superintendent, a preamble, aspirations and commitments of ethical conduct followed by each of the ten positively stated principles with illustrative language for each. A reader of the booklet will be directed to the end of the document with a list of the rules as proposed, including examples of prohibited conduct.

There was a question from the committee asking how these codes would get to those educators. Dr. West said that whenever a person's certificate was about to laps and they send in their paper work then a booklet would be sent to them. The booklet would also be sent to Superintendents, principles, and counselors.

Mr. Jim Shackelford, IEA, stated that they are now in support of the changes.

Rep. Cannon made a motion that Docket No. 08-0202-0303 be accepted as written. Seconded by Rep. Bradford.

Rep. Nielsen asked if they vote in favor of this motion now will they be bound by that vote in the full committee. Rep. Cannon said that as the person who made the motion he would be amiable if Rep. Nielsen changed his mind. Rep. Andersen stated that this was just making a recommendation to the full committee. Rep. Trail agreed.

All members present voted to accept the motion.

DOCKET NO.

30-0101-0301















MOTION:

Dr. Charles Bolles, State Librarian, Docket No. 30-0101-0301 clarifies and updates rules relating to library materials and services relating to disabled borrowers. These rules are being amended to reflect the changes in focus of the collections and services of the State Library necessary to reflect the results of a strategic planning process completed by the State Library Board and staff. It also reflects the reduction in the State Library's budget of just under 20% in the last few years, including no appropriation for library materials in both FY 2003 and FY 2004. As a result of these events the State Library has moved from a mission of providing information services to Idaho residents to helping Idaho libraries improve their capacity to better serve their clientele.

In answer to a question regarding the talking book library, Dr. Bolles stated that this is one of the areas which has not been affected by the cuts as it is the responsibility of the Library of Congress.



Rep. Nielsen made a motion to accept Docket No. 30-0101-0101. Seconded by Rep. Andersen. Motion passed.

DOCKET NO.

47-0101-0301





















MOTION:

Ms. Sue Payne, Vocational Rehabilitation, stated that after discussions with their federal partners and finding that some of

their wording had been more explicit than the federal wording, they were asked to make the wording be less specific.

It was asked why their federal partners don't like the wording, and Ms. Payne stated that it was thought that the State may not allow things that the feds allow.

There was a concern whether we would still be able to do what we need to do if we turn down this rule. Ms. Payne said yes. It was then asked if the State was threatened to go along with these changes. Ms. Payne said no.

There was also a question regarding CRP and what type of services they provide. Ms. Payne said that they are all over the state and they provide things like job coaching and job placement.

It was mentioned that there was a concern from the Senate side that the descriptive summary did not follow Idaho statute. Ms. Payne said they would do better next year. It was pointed out that the fee summary was adequate because there is not a fee; the inadequacy arises in the descriptive summary. This summary is important because it becomes helpful to someone who doesn't have the full document or time to study it. All agencies should be cautioned to have better descriptions for the public.

Rep. Rydalch moved to adopt Docket No. 47-1010-0301. Rep. Nielsen seconded the motion. Motion passed.

ADJOURN: The meeting was adjourned at 10:05 a.m.




DATE: January 19, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Subcommittee Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Block, Bauer, Eberle, Kulczyk, Bayer, Boe, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representative Jones
GUESTS: Please refer to the presenters highlighted below and to the committee sign-in sheet.
DOCKET NO.

08-0203-0301

Representative Lake, Subcommittee Chairman, called the meeting to order at 9:07 A.M. Public testimony on Docket No.08-0203-0301 was continued.
Dr. Carolyn Keeler, Professor at the University of Idaho and Chair of the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC), appointed by Dr. Marilyn Howard, addressed the committee. She explained that the TAC is charged with (1) meeting the requirements of the compliance agreement with the federal government for an external review of the State assessment system and (2) to ensure that the test is valid, reliable, fair and unbiased. She stated that both of these efforts will result in protection for the State from liability in the case of students being denied diplomas due to the ISAT's use as a sole measure of high school achievement.

Dr. Keeler explained that the TAC has spent more than a year evaluating the documentation provided by the test contractor, Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA). She described the makeup of the committee and each member's area of expertise. She summarized the technical committee's concerns as:

1. that it is valid ­ measures the adopted curriculum;

2. that it is reliable ­ measures achievement consistently across items and test administrations;

3. that it is without bias ­ no minority group will be treated unfairly by the test; and;

4. that there is a recorded process for test development and review.

Dr. Keeler said that NWEA did respond to some of TAC's questions/ concerns last week, but TAC still has concerns. The responses given by NWEA, the TAC's outstanding concerns and some alternative measures are outlined in detail in Attachment 1. Dr. Keeler said the bottom line is that the State and NWEA both need more time before implementing this test as a requirement for graduation to ensure the ISAT is in good shape and to eliminate the State being sued.

In response to questions, Dr. Keeler said it could take 1-2 years before the ISAT is valid and reliable. She said the fear is that if we start down this path before we have a valid, reliable and non-biased test we will lose students. When asked since NCLB doesn't require a high stakes test, why ISAT. She explained that NCLB requires adequate yearly progress (AYP) and a high stakes test is just one means of showing AYP.
Mr. Fred Riggers, self-employed farmer, stated he is concerned for his grandchildren who will be required to pass the ISAT before graduating from high school. He explained that he has a grandson who gets A's & B's but has failed the tests given to prepare him to take the ISAT. His granddaughter on the other hand is failing her classes, but has passed the tests. He asked that the committee members use caution and make the best judgment. When Mr. Riggers was asked if the results of the tests were being used as a diagnostic tool to help his grandson, he said he wasn't sure ­ his grandson just has trouble taking tests.
Dr. Mike Friend, Executive Director, Idaho School Administrator's Association (IASA), spoke to Subsection 105.03, Graduation Requirements, pages 27 and 28 of the rule. He applauded the Office of the State Board of Education for listening to input during the hearings and adding the provision to allow locally established mechanisms to be used if students cannot pass the ISAT. He believes these rules provide the guidelines and framework that will allow the local school boards to develop alternative routes and remediation, and he feels the alternative route for Special Education is just a drop in the bucket to those students needing help.

Dr. Friend indicated that Superintendents from Region 1 and Region 6 each put together proposals for intervention strategies. A group of about 12 high school principals joined them last Tuesday to look at the proposals and began to formulate one plan. He pointed out that the proposals include performance and practice intervention strategies to help students who are struggling. These intervention strategies and remediation measures are vital because students can't apply for a waiver until their senior year, which may be too late.

When asked if the IASA has concerns about requiring the school districts to develop the alternative mechanisms, Dr. Friend said the reason the superintendents in the two regions began developing their proposals was because they don't want 114 different plans, and many districts do not have the dollars or resources to develop a plan. In response to whether we are putting techniques into the plans to help students not to freeze on a test, he said hopefully they can minimize the fears. It was pointed out that students going on to college or into the workplace must learn to take and pass tests. Dr. Friend said the IASA is in favor of moving forward on the rules and they will provide additional comments on ISAT at the joint meeting on Wednesday.

Dr. Cliff Green, Executive Director, Idaho School Boards Association (ISBA), indicated that the ISBA developed a resolution that states: "ISBA recognizes the importance of assessments in measuring what students should know and be able to do. Moreover, ISBA supports efforts to ensure that student performance be appropriately and accurately measured. Assessments of student progress should be tied closely with state and local standards and reflect changes in expectations." He said the ISBA did have concerns about the validity and the reliability of the ISAT, so he worked with Dr. Thompson and looked at the data and the methods used to ensure validity and reliability. He said he feels that the Office of the State Board of Education (OSBE) has gone through adequate validity and reliability testing, and if ISAT is both reliable and valid we need to get going. If not, we must request a waiver from the Federal government, which they have already denied. He said the OSBE is working on an RFP for a third party evaluation. ISBA supports the OSBE and realizes the ISAT is not perfect, but feels by 2006 it will be close.
Dr. Marilyn Howard, State Superintendent of Public Schools, State Department of Education (SDE) stressed that the SDE supports the ISAT and they are hard at work trying to put all the pieces together. She said they just want to be able to say with assurance that they are accurately measuring students. She said the SDE will live and deal with the rules whatever the outcome. Dr. Howard pointed out that under NCLB schools will be judged on their performance and so will the instructors. The SDE's main concern is that with ISAT individual students will be placed in a high stakes situation. She acknowledged that all schools have struggling students, but a higher percentage of Hispanic and Tribal children are failing, and we must help them overcome their anxieties. Dr. Howard indicated that the ISAT is still being written, these tests will be different in the Spring than they were last spring and the new test hasn't been validated. She indicated that having an outside group of educators evaluating the ISAT and giving their input and suggestions on collecting data has been instrumental in the contractor changing their behavior.

In response to a question about whether there is an ideal amount of time before mandating tests, Dr. Howard referred to the IRI where they had a year to pilot and repair the test. When asked from her perspective if we should move forward on rules and then change along the way, she said they are concerned that a single multiple choice test must have a parallel plan to evaluate if students are doing what's required ­ taking the test 6 times isn't a motivating factor. In response to a question about bias, Dr. Howard explained that it is a way of looking at an item to see if the item would be unfamiliar or demeaning or if one student population would have an advantage over another. When asked if there is anything in the test that would preclude someone reading the test to a student, she said she is sure it would be against the rules on the reading portion itself.

Ms. Morgan Byron, student at Eagle High School, voiced her opposition to the ISAT, if it is used for a graduation requirement. She explained that she has already passed the ISAT, but some of her fellow students may not. She said there are other ways to make sure they know the information, especially by taking the end of course finals. She stressed she feels using the test as an assessment is fine, but not as a graduation requirement. When asked if she found the ISAT difficult, she mentioned that the attention span was the most difficult because she took the test on a computer and it required a lengthy attention span to complete.
Ms. Lisa Kegan, Education Leaders Council, said the council is very much in favor of school choice, assessment and accountability, qualified teachers, etc. She mentioned she was a part of the American Federation of Teachers in Arizona and was in on the original set of studies. She believes that when we expect too little, students do less. She asked "is it not possible that instruction is not as high with minority and struggling students?" She feels basic skills can be learned by all. She stressed it should not be suggested that this test is new and it did have field testing. She stated she would be happy to help out with Idaho's efforts and mentioned that states are looking at all assessments.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the subcommittee, Representative Lake adjourned the meeting at 10:30 A.M.




DATE: January 20, 2004
TIME: 8:00 A.M.
PLACE: Gold Room
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representative Jones
GUESTS: Please refer to the presenters highlighted below and to the committee sign-in sheet.
Senator Gary Schroeder, Senate Education Chairman, called the joint meeting to order at 8:05 A.M. and introduced the chairs and co-chairs of each committee. He explained that the issues brought forth today are important to the people of Idaho, and these meetings will allow ideas to be flushed out. Chairman Barraclough thanked the attendees for their interest.
Dr. Randy Thompson, Chief Academic Officer, Office of the State Board of Education, began by saying that No Child Left Behind (NCLB) commands central stage in the US today. He explained that in 1994 the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) focused on a baseline of standards and required assessments. The Idaho Legislature responded to the business community's concern about finding qualified Idaho applicants and mandated a standards based system be developed. In 2001 a Federal bi-partisan approach began that resulted in the NCLB Act, a reauthorization of the ESEA. Congress authorized $1.1 billion to support testing. They did a scan of 18 states to develop the approach for NCLB, and Idaho was one of the states they looked at. Idaho now has solid standards, a testing system for diagnosis and a comprehensive development plan. In 2001, Idaho received $59.3 million in Federal support; $79 million in 2002, and $91 million in 2003. Funding has been responsive to the needs, and most Federal programs have received increases across the board. He stressed that the original purpose of the ESEA was to reduce the gap in student performance.
In response to questions regarding cost of bringing all students up to speed, Dr. Thompson said that Idaho State University is in the process of calculating Idaho's costs. He stressed the mandate from NCLB is educating children so that all youth graduating will be prepared and he sees this as a partnership among all entities involved.
Mr. Tom Farley, Federal Programs Bureau Chief, State Department of Education, stated that NCLB is all about educating children. He pointed out there are many pieces to NCLB that are not talked about. He said that Idaho schools began implementing NCLB in 2002-2003. NCLB goes right to the classroom, and is intended to close the gap ­ low income and low performing students should receive a quality education. Mr. Farley discussed what NCLB is about: accountability, flexibility and local control, enhanced parental choice and focusing on what works (Attachment 1). He talked about the Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) requirements under NCLB, and in Attachment 1 provided details of the State Board of Education's current position on the AYP formula, a chart listing AYP goals in reading and mathematics and illustrating the annual performance growth requirements through 2012-2013, an AYP School Improvement Timeline, and qualifications for highly qualified teachers (new & existing) and paraprofessional.

Mr. Farley also provided a detailed AYP summary showing Idaho's Spring 2003 AYP results (Attachment 2). He pointed out that every school is required to meet 36 individual targets and missing any one target identifies the entire school as not meeting AYP for the year. Attachment 2 outlines the most common participation targets missed and the most proficiency targets missed. He said schools can appeal, but the appeal process is intensive and the Department realizes the process needs to be improved. He stressed what's left to do now is find the resources to meet the requirements, concentrating on qualified teachers, paraprofessionals and remediation.

In response to questions, Mr. Farley provided the following clarifications.

Based on the requirement to meet 36 individual targets, Idaho does not have failing schools, only those needing improvement (see "AYP School Improvement Timeline" in Attachment 1).

Also on the AYP Timeline, Year 4, Item 2 under Supplemental Services, "Caps the per child cost" is based on Title I schools.

Growth requirements for schools performing at an extremely high levels are not the same as for those needing improvement.

A study is being conducted to determine the funding needed to meet the requirements, but what he fears is we must look differently at the qualified teachers and paralegal requirements. It is also his understanding that certificates and endorsements would meet qualifications.

Idaho cannot and will not throw out the ISAT. Every test a child takes now means something. ISAT is the test and must be validated and checked for bias ­ must use a stethoscope not a hammer.

NCLB changes the law and raises the bar ­ it uses teeth to see that the AYP is met.

Adaptations and accommodations will be developed for students with a low IQ.

The State Department of Education is aware that money is being redirected from gifted and talented programs. Idaho has an excellent GT Coordinator and we must assure all curriculum is taught well.

Federal requirements mandate only outcome, but do not mandate how to achieve ­ they do give some flexibility in moving funds. NCLB does not require a high stakes exam, but requires states meet the AYP targets.

Ms. Jane Lesko, Grangeville, Idaho, voiced her opposition to NCLB and provided references to support her position (Attachment 3). She urged the repeal of NCLB because she feels it "is a blatant breach of national sovereignty as well as state sovereignty, compromising the authority of our state representatives over our educational system, and impinges on the rights of parents to guide the direction of their children's education...".

Ms. Lesko has drafted an RS for a Senate Joint Memorial and hopes to have the RS introduced this session.

Mr. Tom Luna, Senior Advisor to Rod Paige, reflected on the day in 1995 when Governor Phil Batt announced that Idaho would develop standards, assessment and accountability measures for education. Four or Five years later they began hearing about NCLB, which was based on things Idaho had considered while developing their plan. He said in 1994 the reauthorization of the ESEA identified goals but no funding.

Funding, Flexibility and Local Control -- In the last nine years there has been an 132% increase in Title I funding. Idaho received $27.2 million in 2001 and 42.5 million in 2004 for Title I and all tied to NCLB because of its requirements. He also stated that there is $6 billion that states have not tapped into and Idaho has $3.9 million of Title I funds that could be used immediately ­ Federal funds can replace or supplant state funds under NCLB which provides flexibility at the local level to apply the funds where needed to meet requirements. He suggested that the state funds going to the locals schools needs to be as flexible.

Teachers ­ NCLB deals with highly qualified teachers and Idaho places in the top five states for number of highly qualified teachers. Teacher requirements are set by the states so Idaho should look at opportunities to remove barriers and look at other ways to bring highly qualified into the classroom.

He feels NCLB unites all individuals towards results ­ teachers, parents, administration, school boards, OSBE and the Department. Government and Legislatures will have report cards. Mr. Luna pointed out that in 1960 we felt it was impossible to go to the moon, but by pulling together the best and brightest we did. He said no society in the world has ever done what we are trying to do under NCLB.

Mr. Luna clarified the following:

States have a 23-27 month window in which to use Federal funds or they will be lost. Idaho has had money left over in all categories, but may have earmarked it for future programs. It is possible that no one knew about funds or have deferred use. NCLB mandates that every child learn math and reading and apparently the cost for implementing this was $6 billion less than anticipated.

If Idaho rejects NCLB it will jeopardize all Federal funding and Idaho is currently receiving $156 million for all Federal programs.

He does not agree that NCLB leaves behind children in rural schools, but recognizes that all schools (urban, suburban and rural) have unique needs. Rural teachers many times must teach multiple subjects and the state can play a role by utilizing paraprofessionals.

It is disturbing that technical training and other valuable programs are being cut in some districts because they are finding it difficult to assure a wide variety of classes and assure students meet the NCLB requirements.

Dr. Marilyn Howard, Superintendent of Public Education, State Department of Education, said she had no prepared remarks but would like to respond to comments. She thanked Mr. Farley for providing information on the many pieces of NCLB. She explained that at its heart, NCLB is centered on Civil Rights to provide resources to those left behind so they can achieve at the same level as others. She said the IRI, K-3 serves to screen those who need resources and then NCLB requires assessments at grades 3-8 and 10. She complimented the Legislators on their efforts, stating how important their support had been and explained that the $1 million they received for standards this year has been used to provide a supervisory focus to build leadership and data analysis. Dr. Howard said we must have substantial data to help teachers assess and then learn methods of remediation.

Dr. Howard identified problems we need to think about as (1) Under NCLB, even high quality schools may be placed on a "need improvement" list because if a subset of the population fails, the whole school is placed on the list. You don't have to have the same group fail each year to be put on needs improvement; and (2) in the 2nd year of school improvement, students will have the option of attending another school and must be transported ­ parents in Florida enrolled their children in a failing school so they could get a $1,000 voucher; (3) in Title I schools the dollars are targeted to elementary and not to high school students; and (4) schools that are not Title I are not subject to the same ramifications.

Dr. Howard thanked Tom Luna for pointing out that there is $3.9 million available to Idaho so now she can supplant a 1% raise for teachers and fund technology. When asked about the money and whether she felt she had flexibility, she stated that the Chiefs were outraged. She said you cannot ask for the money ahead of time and it is usually earmarked. If any of Idaho's money is not used it is usually small amounts not used out of grants.

Mr. Neil Colwell, Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry (IACI) said IACI has put together a well thought out education policy statement (Attachment 4). He emphasized that Idaho's business community has a vital interest in a public school system and has a stake in the process and delivery of education services and the quality of students graduating from Idaho's schools. He pointed out that Idaho's businesses directly contribute 45 percent of local property taxes going to schools and 30 percent of the General Fund appropriated to annual K-12 schools. Mr. Colwell stressed that business has a responsibility to sustain schools beyond tax support and they will partner with all education stakeholders to shape policies.
Mrs. Kelly Christensen, parent of a special needs child, explained she chose to keep her son home on the day of testing so his low math score didn't go against the school or put pressure on the teacher. She acknowledged that no accommodations would have helped him pass the test. Mrs. Christensen said she had struggled for 4 years to get an appropriate education for her son, and she has experienced teachers who don't want him in their class. She said NCLB is not bad, just not thought out. She asked the legislators to look at the test being required and to help her help the teachers.
Ms. Peggy Polling-Sharky, principle at Parma, stated she like being held accountable, but NCLB needs improvement. She talked about their specialized reading programs and after school leaning programs ­ some students are at school at 6:00 A.M. She indicated the problem is that one size doesn't fit all and you can't measure 280 adolescents one way. She said what she celebrates is when students come on time and aren't on juvenile detention or drugs. She closed saying she was arguing against being accountable for what counts.
Ms. Terry Anderson, parent and school board trustee, District 25 stated she is concerned about (1) their library being closed for 12 weeks while it is used for a testing lab; (2) accountability for students ­ withhold driver's license; (3) implementation with this group of 9th & 10th graders who didn't receive remediation in the lower grades; (4) dropout of students and teachers ­ teaching is not fun and there are too many pressures.
Ms. Janet Orndorff, trustee and President of Idaho School Board Association (ISBA) stressed that ISBA applauds and embraces NCLB, but need to put this in perspective. This has not been attempted or completed in the world. The need for remediation is great and all school districts want to be successful. ISBA believes NCLB gives more flexibility and local control and will help provide quality teachers in rural areas. ISBA is helping school board members by developing standards and holding measurement and training workshops (See Attachment 5, NCLB Governance Calendar).
Ms. Jan Lang, 4th grade teacher at Idaho Falls, said her school is a "failing" school in one category, while scores are very high. They have 400 students but no Title I. They wrote a letter of appeal but it was denied. They failed because one student was still on their records, but who was not enrolled because of severe emotional problems. They have many dedicated teachers and counselors and have had students score 1600 on the SAT. She cited problems with NCLB as funding, highly qualified requirements, and AYP doesn't measure attendance and grades. She feels students could be tested at the grade they are performing. Ms. Lang said she feels pressured (Attachment 7).
Due to time constraints, Ms. Kathy Phelan, President, Idaho Education Association, submitted written testimony (see Attachment 8).
Dr. Phil Kelly, professor at BSU, said he feels the 36 cell matrix is problematic because if schools fail to meet on requirement or 36 requirements they are placed on "need improvement list". He mentioned a model he'd worked on that would test at level on grade level but it was rejected by the Federal Department of Education. No state testing system can trump the ISAT, i.e. the IRI and the Direct Math exams cannot be used.
Ms. Pam Peck, Teacher at Pocatello High School, talked about how demoralizing it is to be listed as a school "needing improvement" or "failing". She said Pocatello High failed 7 requirements ­ 6 in participation and 1 in performance. She indicated that staff is being redirected for remediation and mentioned the feelings of hopelessness and the extreme amount of pressure. She said she begins her day working with special needs students who don't fall under the graduation requirement and then with AP students who welcome the standards based system but are behind because there are no challenging classes. Courses are being cut.
Mr. Sam Byrd, Consultant for Council on Hispanic Education, said the issues with Latinos and Tribal students are well documented with the use of aggregate data, but the gap is not being closed on the 40% of Latino and Tribal students who are dropping out. He said the Council supports accountability and they realize as parents and educators that they must do their part. He feels Idaho is not ready for NCLB and 60% of LEP elementary students are pulled out of regular classrooms. They are concerned about the political will to make this happen because they have been told for 25 years its their fault and told to wait. He mentioned the Federal Title III funding debate between the OSBE and the SDE that is holding up/eliminating a position the Council needs.
Mr. Dan Hawkley, representing Leave No Mother Behind, stressed that a child who is left behind at home is never going to catch up. He referred to Article III, Section 24, Idaho Constitution which states "The first concern of all good government is the virtue and sobriety of the people, and the purity of the home. The legislature should further all wise and well directed efforts for the promotion of temperance and morality." This group feels NCLB burdens educators with a task they cannot fulfill and diverts responsibility for America's future from families to the public schools (Attachment 6).
Ms. Patricia Burnham, parent and teacher, said she is amazed that the Federal government can dictate curriculum, NCLB, Sec, 2344 "We the People Program, The Citizen and the Constitution". She said if Idaho takes the funding for NCLB, she believes the government has the right to restructure the schools. She believes the objective is socialism and indoctrination and she is concerned the state is not waking up. She feels the privacy of the home and the parents are at risk.
ADJOURN: There being no further testimony, Senator Schroeder adjourned the meeting at 11:10.




DATE: January 21, 2004
TIME: 8:00 A.M.
PLACE: Gold Room
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representative Jones
GUESTS: Please refer to the presenters highlighted below and to the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 8:10 A.M. He commended Senator Schroeder's foresight in setting up the joint meetings this week to bring the committee's together and to facilitate public testimony. Our goal is to turn out students who can compete in today's world and acknowledged that we need everyone's help to make the ISAT the best test we can.
NOTE: Attachments referenced below will be included in the official Legislative Library minute book.
Dr. Randy Thompson, Chief Academic Officer, Office of the State Board of Education (OSBE), began by quoting author Henry Smith ­ "what we measure gets done" and in business it is said that "what we measure improves". Dr. Thompson indicated that Idaho has adopted and implemented standards in all Idaho Schools, a comprehensive assessment program was put in place in 2001 and the final step is to establish accountability measures that will ensure compliance with the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB).

In January 2002, Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA) was selected as the vendor to administer the ISAT. They are a non-profit education assessment organization serving 1100 member districts nationwide that represent more than 3 million students tested per year. In addition to offering a diagnostic test in the fall of each year, the SBOE and the State Department of Education (SDE) worked collaboratively to revise the fall version into an on-grade level test that could be used for the NCLB requirements and administered in the spring.

Attachment 1 provides complete details of Dr. Thompson's comments as they relate to the (1) eleven steps used to build the ISAT (validity); (2) alignment of the ISAT to the Idaho standards; (3) reliability of the test; (4) relationship to NCLB; (5) dropout and graduation rates; (6) teaching and curriculum; (7) student motivation/improving scores; and (8) legal issues.

In Attachment 2, Dr. Thompson provided the findings and conclusions of researchers at the Hoover Research Institution regarding high-stakes testing which differ significantly from the studies of Amerein and Berliner, ASU. To a concern about teachers and administrators struggling to accommodate the scheduling and administering of the ISAT, Dr. Thompson explained that all but two districts are using computers to administer the test because this provides immediate feedback. When asked if NWEA has the experience needed to provide valid and reliable tests, he stated that SBOE is working with a national expert to develop the RFP for a 3rd party evaluation of the validity and reliability of the ISAT.
Dr. G. Gage Kingsbury, Director of Research, NWEA, concentrated his remarks to issues relating to the measurement quality of the ISAT. These issues are:

1. How does the use of a systemic measurement scale influence the use of the test for graduation decisions?

2. Is the selection of test questions done in a manner to assure that the test matches well to the Idaho content standards?

3. Is the test able to make accurate decisions concerning student performance?

4. Is the test comparable in its measurement characteristics to tests used for graduation qualifying in other states?

Attachment 3 contains Dr. Kingsbury's testimony in its entirety. Major points he made are summarized here. The measurement scale for the ISAT is a growth scale that allows students to be accurately compared from grade to grade. It is not just the responsibility of the high school teachers to ensure students succeed ­ there are many warning signs along the way. As Dr. Thompson pointed out earlier, all items used on the high school ISAT were selected by Idaho educators to match a specific content standard. Regarding the question of whether the ISAT, for a graduation standards test, can consistently place students into the correct performance category, the classification accuracy on the spring 2003 high school ISAT was .92 in language usage, .92 in reading, and .91 in mathematics.

Dr. Kingsbury stated that the federal government does not require states to have a graduation qualifying examination and does not specify the characteristics that a graduation test should have. Most of the information concerning graduation tests comes from a comparison in a 14-state study (Attachment 3). When comparing Idaho's tests to other states having exiting exams (Texas and Florida), he found about the same level of classification accuracy. He pointed out that the exit exam requirement varies greatly in the 27 states requiring them, and Idaho has adopted the policy that if students don't pass they will be given additional opportunities. He said there are lots of district to district autonomy and many may have graduation policies already in place.

Dr. Carolyn Keeler, chair of the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) appointed by Dr. Howard, stated she is here to talk about ISAT as a requirement for high school graduation. She described the TAC as an external review committee charged with "providing technical information on each of the components of the Idaho assessment system." They are to (1) meet the requirements of the compliance agreement with the federal government for an external review and (2) ensure that the test is valid, reliable, fair and unbiased. She explained the TAC is made up of experts in large scale testing, test validity and reliability, and issues surrounding special needs students. Dr. Keeler pointed out four concerns about the ISAT as (1) test validity; (2) test reliability; (3) test without bias; and (4) test development and review must have a recorded process (Attachment 4).

Dr. Keeler acknowledged that NWEA has provided answers to some of their questions, but more time is needed to get the ISAT in good shape, for the testing company to do their work, and the TAC to do theirs. She emphasized that "Idaho is forced by NCLB to use a test that is still in development, but we are not forced to implement and untested test as a requirement for graduation". She described alternative measures that could be used for gradation requirements and suggested students could graduate based on 4 of the 5 requirements (Attachment 4). She again stressed the need for more time.

Dr. Marilyn Howard, Superintendent of Public Instruction, State Department of Education (SDE), expressed that she was pleased to see Dr. Gage Kingsbury from NWEA here today and pointed out he is sitting by Dr. David Breithaupt from the SDE. They both have similar jobs and have worked very closely together this last year to resolve problems.

Dr. Howard's testimony is presented in its entirety in Attachment 5. She provided an overview of how we got to where we are today:

­ Standards and Assessment Commission originally planned for a test that would measure students in the fall and spring, and tests would inform instruction and record how much students had learned.

­ NWEA was chosen as the vendor for the test

­ The US Department of Education would not accept these tests but wanted an on-grade on-level test.

­ NWEA had no experience as a company with developing and managing the test required by NCLB nor did they have the staff to develop test questions ­ their model had been to have teachers contribute and select questions.

­ SDE specialists identified teachers who were invited to come to Boise to select questions. This was a frustrating time for all involved because they couldn't influence the process because NWEA was not taking order from the SDE.

­ Three SDE staff spent six months full time to clean up the data mess left by NWEA. SDE wrote technical manuals and filled in many gaps. Concerns surfaced about the appropriateness of the test for special education students.

Costs of testing in the state are estimated at around $4 million, and it was pointed out that the cost of the ITBS three years ago was less than $1 million. Dr. Howard said she is not suggesting that we return to the ITBS because we do need to measure the standards. She stressed that the SDE is working to make the ISAT a strong test, and they believe that what we measure gets taught. She emphasized that it is important to determine what is important enough to be included on the test and to what degree those skills should be assessed. That work is underway, but we are not there yet. She urged that passing the ISAT not be made a graduation requirement at this time ­ we are not ready to bear the burden of high stakes now.

Ms. Kathy Phelan, Idaho Education Association, in the interest of time, submitted her comments in writing (Attachment 6).

Ms. Kathy Stetson, NWEA, said she has been the lead for Idaho since NWEA received the contract, and she has worked closely with the OSBE, SDE and the districts. NWEA has looked at what would give the best assessment for teachers. She definitely feels NWEA is fully capable of delivering the ISAT.
Mr. Tom Luna, speaking as a member of the Idaho Assessment and Accountability Commission, reminded those present that the commission was asked to go slow and he feels they did. He indicated that over the past 10 years over 300 Idahoans from all walks of life have been involved in this effort. He emphatically pointed out that allowing thousands of students to leave high school without the proper skills is high stakes.
Dr. Bob Haley, Legislative Liaison, State Department of Education, voiced two concerns. He is concerned about the library at some schools being closed while the ISAT is given, and he is very concerned about technology funding being cut in light of the ISAT requirements and ISIMS coming on line this year. Dr. Haley provided a suggestion from Dr. Doug Reeves, researcher for the Center for Performance and Assessment, that in order for Idaho not to head down the road to disaster they need to adopt a middle ground by allowing students to graduate from high school by completing 4 of 5 requirements.
Mr. Brian Crouch, consultant, stated he is a former high school teacher and served an internship in Japan. He asked that Idaho not focus on tests in lieu of critical thinking, because knowledge is more than dissemination of information. He stated students need to become good American citizens and high level critical thinkers.
Ms. Karen Vauk, teacher and Micron employee, representing the Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry (IACI), mentioned her involvement on the Idaho Assessment and Accountability Commission, stating she feels they did a thorough and inclusive job. She stressed paying attention to the cost for remediation, pointing out that Micron spends about $1 million on remediation. Ms. Vauk provided IACI's policy regarding achievement standards, assessment and accountability (Attachment 7). Also provided by IACI was written testimony from Teresa Molitor, J.D. on Adoption of Proposed Rules on Accountability (Attachment 8).
Mr. Sam Byrd, Consultant, Tribal-Latino Caucus, presented a statement from the Caucus. He said they welcome the commitment to systematically test student achievement in our schools. They believe that an ISAT, if proven to be valid, reliable, and free from cultural bias, offers a useful measure of the success or failure. However, they would consider it the gravest of injustices if their students were denied diplomas for failing to meet the standards expected of them before the school system has overcome its failure to meet the standards expected of it. Mr. Byrd pointed out that over 50% of the Latino and Native American students failed the ISAT pilot last year, a finding consistent with years of other standardized test results. He noted an unintended consequence of the ISAT could be a high dropout rate. He declared their united resolve to hold the state education system accountable and acknowledged as leaders, educators and parents they recognize their fundamental responsibility. (See Attachment 9 for entire statement and fact sheet.)
Mr. Steve Horner, private citizen, Meridian spoke in favor of basic skills testing. He explained that he was a single parent who raised two sons. One son was in one of the first classes in Minnesota to graduate under the new rules. Mr. Horner said his son, an average student, did well in math and reading because he was diligent, studied hard, turned in his homework, and took the test seriously. Mr. Horner disagrees with those who use excuses for students not doing well (Attachment 10).
Ms. Wendy Seley, teacher from Boundary County Jr. High, reminded the members that she sent them a letter telling them how to solve the problem (Attachment 11). She explained that the Idaho ISAT only covers about 20% of the standards and she's having to cover 80%. ISAT should be revamped to make sure standards are covered and must measure more than reading and writing. She stressed that electives are being cut and kids labeled.
Ms. Barbara Crow, fifth grade teacher, Couer d'Alene, stated that even with her 26 years of teaching little has impacted her teaching more than the ISAT. She said the diagnostic uses of the ISAT at first glance are appealing. She described a pilot program where students are grouped according to their scores to help teach what they need to know. They found that a group scoring the same mean turns out to be as diverse as any other group of students. Ms. Crow's comments are presented in full in Attachment 12.
Ms. Terry Anderson, elected member of the Pocatello School Board, urged that we take our time on this and have a 12-year implementation time period and start with first grade. People are feeling the impact locally ­ talk to the students.
Dr. Cliff Green, Executive Director, Idaho School Boards Association (ISBA), said his organization is encouraged with the process. They support appropriate, accurate and adequately funded assessment of student performance. ISBA accepts testing as part of a graduation requirement as long as there are additional avenues for students to meet the requirement. Educators are working on alternate assessment measures. A perfect test is improvable and the process will take time. (See Attachment 13 for the ISBA's full testimony).
Ms. Jan Downs, former Special Education Specialist, stated that ISAT would be fair if all students started at the same level. She feels the ISAT is high stakes and that the cut scores lend themselves to only 40% of the students. She opposes using ISAT alone without factoring in GPA or other criteria, and pointed out that only 50% of Latino's from Texas graduate.
Mr. Ralph Hahn, stakeholder from Glenns Ferry, said he is not an educator but was a college registrar. He feels that if schools had been grading properly and transcripts were not distorted that an ISAT would not be necessary. He stated the opposition comes from the culture of our youth who don't recognize the standards set by others.
Mrs. Tracy Warren, parent and staff member of the Idaho Council on Developmental Disabilities, talked about the importance of the participation of students with disabilities in state and local assessments. Not only because it is required by law, but also because their participation should help improve teaching and learning by creating high expectations and accountability for the success of ALL students. She warned that because of ISAT, referrals to special education may increase and some teachers may not welcome these students into their classroom. She said she commends Special Education Specialists. (Refer to Attachment 14 for her full testimony.)
Ms. Jessica Hill, student majoring in Education at Albertson College, mentioned three concerns: (1) qualified experts to teach; (2) the costs involved (she urged that they follow the money trail) and (3) people implementing the test. She said there is no end to assessment and the ISAT should be reevaluated continually.
Dr. Phil Kelly, professor at Boise State University, said he does not feel the ISAT is a high stakes test. He mentioned that teachers are asking not to be held accountable when students aren't accountable. He supports comments made by Ms. Vauk and Mr. Luna and fears the curriculum will be narrowed. He has heard that principals have said you will teach only reading and math.
Ms. Debbie Yates, adjunct professor, Albertson College, explained that she was a transplant and a former alternative school educator. She said "she had been there, done that" in Indiana. She taught GED preparation and they didn't have enough room for all the dropouts because they had no waiver process. She stressed the costs in human terms and said Idaho has a chance to learn from other states.
Mr. Jerry Helgeson, president, Meridian Education Association, reminded everyone to walk softly and carry a flexible stick.
Mr. Lee Dubert, professor of Education at Boise State University, spoke in opposition to the ISAT. He mentioned three concerns and urged that this not be made a high stakes test. Concerns were regarding (1) reliability and validity ­ 9 accepted measures; (2) reliability is easily measured; and (3) construct validity.
Mrs. Julie Robinson, parent and volunteer, Parent Teacher Association, urged that we slow down and provide resources. She voiced concerns about whether scoring well is synonymous with proficiency, about differences in states, differences between grades and the necessary financial support.
Ms. Molly Maas, graduating senior planning to become a teacher, said the first goal in teaching should be to "educate" and the secondary goal is the assessing and sorting of students. She said the ISAT is not the goal of educating and assessing. She pointed out that none of her job interviews had required a multiple choice test, but rather they evaluated her ability to communicate and interrelate. ISAT has a very real impact to students who can communicate but may not test well.
Mr. Juan Almanza, hombre, SEI, stated that as an Idaho resident he views this as a very serious issue. He said he has been dealing with these issues longer and his community is affected by them. He asked for a delayed implementation and to erase the disparities. He stressed the solutions are at our hand ­ work with my community.
Dr. Howard was asked how much money was in the Governor's budget for remediation and she said "none". The SDE requested $5 million based on $125 per student and assuming 1/4 of the students would require remediation. In response to the question about her staff member's costs being included in the $3.5 million to NWEA, she said her staff members cost was not counted, just the cost of cleanup and people contributing. Dr. Howard estimated about 3 years of rolling data, before the test is used, would give the system a chance to work. NWEA was asked whether legislator's could actually look at the ISAT, and Dr. Kingsley said the contract is through the Board and if they have no difficulty with it then it would be possible ­ the only concern is security.
ADJOURN: There being no other testimony, Representative Barraclough adjourned the meeting at 11:35.




DATE: January 22, 2004
TIME: 8:00 A.M.
PLACE: Gold Room
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representative Cannon
GUESTS: Please refer to the presenters highlighted below and to the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Schroeder called the meeting to order at 8:09 A.M., expressing how tremendous it is to have a room full of people dedicated to educating children. Because of the large number of people wishing to testify, a two-minute limit was set for testimony.

Chairman Schroeder stated he has visited most of the charter schools in the state, and this body supports charter schools ­ the question is not whether we have charter schools in Idaho, but how we manage efficient charter schools. He mentioned that a six-member committee made up of representatives and senators is being convened to address virtual charter schools. We have some issues regarding separation of powers, and the Office of the State Board, in trying to help the Idaho Virtual Academy, made a motion to fund that entity, but they do not have the authority nor the responsibility for allocating tax dollars. Mr. von Tagen was asked to address this issue.

Mr. William von Tagen, Division Chief Intergovernmental & Fiscal Law, Attorney General's office spoke briefly about charter school governance. He stated from a policy standpoint, we need to determine if statutes clearly apply to charter schools and their boards and then proceed in a proper manner. We need to predict what a court will do if a judge is brought in. There are areas in Idaho Code that may result in confusion: Section 33-5204, Nonprofit corporation ­ Liability ­ Insurance states "A charter school shall be organized and managed under the Idaho nonprofit corporation act. The board of directors of a charter school shall be deemed public agents authorized by a public school district or the state board of education to control the charter school...". The language in this section of code as well as definitions of "public servant" and "public official" on pages 2 and 12 in the Idaho Ethics In Government Manual have caused issues about liability to surface. Mr. von Tagen stated that in fairness, we need to determine which laws charter schools fall under.

Regarding questions about exemptions from law suits, whether employees of charter schools and their contractors are covered under PERSI, and differentiation between elected official and self-appointed, Mr. von Tagen said these issues need clarification. Most charter schools may have addressed these issues in the rules contained in their charters. He clarified that employees of charter schools are state employees and therefore are covered under PERSI, but contractors would not be covered. An attorney with a specialty may be considered a "special agent".

NOTE: Copies of all attachments listed below are available in Room 411 and will become a part of the official Legislative Library minutes.
Mr. Bob Henry, 10-year member of the Nampa School Board, provided background information for the Nampa (now Liberty) Charter School, stating the school board is in the process of discussing Liberty's renewal petition, and they hope to come to an agreement on the remaining few issues. The Nampa School Board denied a petition for the Nampa Charter II school that wanted to mirror Liberty. The denial was appealed to the State Department of Education (SDE) and a hearing officer upheld the denial. Nampa Charter II then appealed to the OSBE and after a hearing, the Board voted to approve the charter. The Nampa School Board has asked the district court to review the decision. He explained that he does not oppose charter schools and recognizes the advantages they have (Attachment 1). Attachment 1 also provides examples of procedures allowed at Liberty Charter that would never be allowed in traditional public schools.
Mrs. Laurie Beckel, Nampa, supports choice for parents, but believes public funds are not being distributed fairly because charter schools in Idaho have an advantage when funded similar to "small school districts" -- they get higher value for a few. She indicated that under pressure Liberty Charter has finally agreed to reimburse Nampa School District for dual enrollment in academics, but not for extra curricular activities. (Full testimony found in Attachment 2).
Mrs. June Blackhurst, Nampa, noted that she had three children enrolled at Liberty, but for their educational and emotional well being she had them pulled out ­ she feels her children did not fit the mold. She stressed that Liberty is a hand picked school. She noted that the1% of students attending charter schools costs the taxpayer 27% more. (Full testimony found in Attachment 3).
Mr. Bill Lofholm, Nampa, pointed out that in 2003 the Legislature was advocating consolidation of schools, yet advocating 60 charter schools. He voiced his concerns about dual enrollment and rules governing the issue of just compensation. (Full testimony found in Attachment 4).
Mrs. Cindy Schiller, Nampa, cited issues with Liberty and other charters as unfair funding, no free busing, hiding behind the non-profit laws, and suing a family for slander. She pointed out that Liberty has spent around $45,000 in the last two years on attorney fees. She supports charter schools and the concept of choice. (Full testimony found in Attachment 5).
Mr. Ken Bobb, parent and business owner, stated he is not against charter schools, but he is concerned about the Board of Directors not releasing documents, i.e. waiting lists. He has a child who is an ex-charter school student. Mr. Bobb was not allowed to sit in on classes.
PRO Mrs. Kelli Stellmon, spoke in favor of charter schools. She has six children and has taken advantage of public schools and homeschooling. One of her children attends the Coeur d'Alene Charter School and one is enrolled in the Idaho Virtual Academy (IDVA). She emphasized that the problems at Liberty are not present at all charter schools. She explained that because of learning disabilities her youngest daughter, Morgan, wouldn't survive in a traditional school because she requires one on one instruction. (Full testimony and Morgan's letter are found in Attachment 6).
PRO Mrs. Kerry Heninger, nurse, spoke in support of funding for charter schools. Her three children attend the IDVA and it works well for their family. Her children are receiving a top notch education, and she has great support from an educator and other parents. IDVA now has a PE program. Educational choice is important to Idahoans.
PRO Mr. Paul Powell, CFO of Intermountain Gas Company and member of the Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry's (IACI) Education Committee stated that IACI has adopted a position in support of choice in public education, including support for public charter schools. Two of his children are attending the Hidden Springs Charter School which has an enrollment of 372, a 16% increase. They have 400 students on a waiting list. Their academic performance is high, and they are financially sound. He asked for help with two issues: (1) financing a quality permanent facility and extended the length of charters. (Testimony found in Attachment 7).
PRO Mrs. Corey Moline, parent, spoke in support of charter schools and freedom of choice. She had a fourth grader in public school and was doing everything she could think of to help her. She suggested holding her daughter back, but the teacher was going to pass her on. Mrs. Moline sought a program where her daughter could succeed and enrolled her in the IDVA which she loves. Her daughter has regained her self-esteem.
Mrs. Joan Burmester, Nampa, cited problems with charters as accountability, selectivity, funding inequities and reporting. She said regular and accurate reports would give a picture of who is attending the school ­ she is concerned about what these schools will look like in 10-15 years.
CON Mr. Rex Burmester, 15-year member of the Nampa School Board, presented his issues of concern: (1) require charter schools to democratically elect their boards; (2) a neutral and impartial third party needs to be in charge of insuring that admissions lotteries are fairly administered; (3) charter school in the valley receive significantly more funding per pupil than large districts; and (4) current charter school law requires they be organized as nonprofit organizations. (Full testimony found in Attachment 8).
PRO Mr. Rodney Limb, Counselor, spoke in favor of charter schools and school choice. He said he has three children in public school and three in the IDVA. He said the public schools have many excellent teachers, but they cannot always give individual attention to students.
PRO Mrs. Dixie Limb, mother, spoke in favor of charter schools. She explained they had a child who was ill and missed a lot of school. They were trying to get their child back into public school when they heard about IDVA. She said that the teachers in Fruitland are awesome, but they can't support the needs of children when they are unable to attend school.
Mr. Zachary Burley, student, stated he had been a student at Liberty. They took away his credits because he failed to meet the attendance requirements by two days. He indicated that he was humiliated in front of the class and had to do community service which included cleaning the school bathrooms. He said Liberty's PE program was watching aerobics videos, and if they went to the recreation center they had to pay for it.
PRO Mrs. Kristine Reynolds, parent, spoke in support of charter schools. She said we need checks and balances and a separate governing body to oversee charter schools to ensure they follow the laws. She reminded everyone that charter schools do not receive property tax dollars, and there are many students waiting to get in.
Mrs. DeAnn Jenkes. parent of five and a teacher, shared her son's story ­ "he loves learning with IDVA, and he is learning a lot more than he did at traditional public school". She explained that her son, Stratton, has mood disorder, OCD, and has panic attacks. IDVA offers techniques to help her manage this condition and they provide very simple outlines and techniques for teaching. She urged support for educational choice. (Full testimony found in Attachment 9).
Ms. Katherine Sturkie, student, IDVA, urged that the Legislators make it easier to create charter schools. She stated that having attended two charter schools as well as a traditional high school, she considers herself an expert on the subject. She found at Eagle High School that much of her time was wasted and little was learned. IDVA has allowed her to have time for more classes, practice sports, be involved with college republicans, and spend more time with her family. (Full testimony found in Attachment 10).
Mr. Daniel Sturkie, IDVA student, explained he is in the 7th grade rather than 5th and he is small for his age and was teased in public school. IDVA has allowed him to learn at his own pace, and they expect much more from the students. He said he is required to write four complete paragraphs on his essays, and he doesn't like the "relentless onslaught of writing". He urged them to make adjustments to the charter school laws.
Mrs. Loralei Sturkei, mother, spoke in favor of charter schools. She noted that public charter schools allow innovations ­ they can modify and do more with less money. She said districts will be forced to innovate and improve because charter schools force traditional public schools to perform.
Mrs. Patricia Boliou, parent, proudly showed a picture of her 7-year old triplets who are enrolled in IDVA. She said she realizes the complexity of teaching children at the same grade level because her children all learn differently. She praised the flexible curricula IDVA offers and the support of the resource teacher.
Mrs. Kelley Phipps, parent and teacher, spoke in support of public charter schools. Her husband is a Civil Engineer, and they have moved their six children across our nation ­TWICE. They have always done homeschooling until four of the children enrolled in IDVA. She explained as parents they are responsible to consistently school their children, take attendance and monitor progress ­ and they have done this from all over the world. Kelley is now a special education teacher for IDVA. (Full testimony found in Attachment 11).
PRO Ms. Amy Phillips, middle school teacher at IDVA, talked about the rigorous curricula used by IDVA and the flexibility for students to move at their own pace. She emphasized that all types of learners benefit, including at risk and those with learning disabilities. Parents are partners and are encouraged to communicate frequently ­ they have bi-weekly conference calls. She urged the Legislature to redirect the necessary funds to keep IDVA open.
PRO Mr. David Gencarella, businessman, parent, and Chairman of the Board for IDVA, spoke in support of IDVA. He has three children ­ two attending IDVA. IDVA is a technology friendly school that has committed and satisfied students and parents and is good for taxpayers. It is a great equalizer because it doesn't matter where you live, you can attend. Mr. Gencarella emphasized that IDVA is in a funding crisis and if decisions stay in committee too long, they will not be here. Attachment 12 provides statistics from the IDVA and outlines their needs.
PRO Mr. Alan Price, student, Meridian Charter High School, thanked the Legislators for their support of charter schools. He said Meridian Charter is a smaller charter school that provides a safe and professional environment. Students are required to complete three years of math and two years of science. They are offered four avenues of certification and they are provided job shadowing opportunities. Charter schools work and need your support.
CON Mr. Dan Taylor, Loss Prevention Manager for Heinz, spoke in opposition to charter schools ­ traditional students are endangered. He cited several issues: (1) funding charters with same formula as small schools; (2) allowing charters to open without transportation and lunch programs is discriminatory; (3) educators without proper credentials; (4) dual-enrollment is double dipping; (5) absence of checks and balances; and (6) children attending charter schools being treated differently. He urged we treat Idaho's children fairly. (Full testimony found in Attachment 13).
PRO Mrs. Heather Dyer, mother, indicated she is homeschooling her children, but she urged support for a new charter school in Kuna. She stated that grants for buildings, bussing and lunch programs are difficult to obtain. She feels a charter school in Kuna would infuse the system since there are no private schools in that area. She asked for support for the regulations governing charters.
Mr. Eric Exline, Public Information Officer, Meridian School District, raised questions about unique and innovative techniques from charter schools being adopted back into school districts, and the language to allow only new programs to be created under a charter. He said the language needs clarification and cited that North Star Charter is using the Harbor method and now Meridian has another request to establish a charter that would also use the Harbor method. They are concerned about replicating systems rather than creating new, innovative systems.
Dr. Mike Friend, Executive Director, Idaho Association of School Administrators, pointed out two changes that need to be addressed regarding charter schools: governance changes and funding. He said accountability should be the same as for public schools. Dr. Friend indicated that information regarding the fairly new virtual and digital systems is contained in a policy brief entitled "Virtual Schools: Policy Formation Process" that can be obtained from the Intermountain Center for Education Effectiveness, College of Education, Idaho State University. He looks forward to working with the subcommittee assigned to address issues surrounding these systems.
PRO Mr. Steve Adams, educator and President of the Charter School Network, said he was standing in for Carri Whitehead who was unable to be here today because she is assisting with an audit of one of the charter schools. He emphasized that the Network is available to the Legislators. He indicated that because of the hostile relationships with some school districts, charter schools feel they are attacked if they give factual information. He mentioned that Paul Powell is a member of the Network, and reminded everyone that charter schools were created for diversity, and they do cause competition.
PRO Mrs. Barbara Singer, Meridian, has a degree in elementary education and is a member of the Compass Charter School Board. She said her goal is to help with extra curricular activities at IDVA. She appreciates the level of individualism and the slower pace in areas where students are struggling. She has taught the Harbor method in several states. Why not make the process of creating a charter easier ­ they are a bargain price at one-third less the cost?
PRO Mrs. Brenda Campbell, parent of six, spoke in support of charter schools. She explained she has three children in public schools in Nampa, and they have great teachers. She has a 19-year old who was homeschooled and is an example of a child reaching her goals, and she has two students in the IDVA. One child struggles and would be left behind in a traditional school, and the other works quickly and excels. She said her family is an example of how education choices help students excel (Attachment 14).
PRO Mrs. Theresa Truslow, parent, spoke in support of charter schools. She and her husband's goal is to provide an academically superior education for their nine year old son. He was enrolled in Cole Elementary, but he wasn't thriving. He was a perfect fit for the IDVA. She doesn't need to worry about him surviving because he doesn't want to miss anything ­ she is sure he'll be ready for college at 6th grade. She urged the simplification of the funding formula. (Full testimony in Attachment 15).
Mrs. Briana LeClaire, parent, spoke in support of charter schools. Her and her husband were both liberal arts majors and sought out a school for their daughter that shared their values. Their daughter was one of 700 students one and a half years ago and now the IDVA has 2000 students with about 4000 on a waiting list, that number is a scandal. She urged their support for funding. (Full testimony found in Attachment 16).
PRO Mrs. Kayla Rich, parent and business owner, is involved with the Compass Charter School application. She described this as a very tense process, but charter school legislation has opened the doors. She said we need to put to rest the idea of uniqueness. Parents demand choice and they want to see multiple authorizing bodies ­ they want to see the fruits of their labor.
PRO Mrs. Kim Engelbrecht, parent from Nampa, shared the story of her daughter's struggle with education in the public schools. She was spending 3 hours a night tutoring her daughter who had been labeled as below-average intelligence. Her daughter is now enrolled in IDVA and is reaping the benefits of unlimited access to a professional teacher, socialization with classmates and teachers and accountability through testing. (Full testimony found in Attachment 16).
PRO Mr. Bart McKnight, self employed, spoke in favor of charter schools. When discussing school choice he referred to Henry Ford's original choice of automobile colors ­ black, black, black. One color or size does not fit all students. Liberty Charter's performance speaks for itself and is a model. The Board has been chosen wisely, they share common goals and are mission driven.
PRO Mr. Kirk Miller, President of the Board, Anser Charter School, addressed accountability. He said Anser had three members from the Boise School Board of Trustees provide their expertise to Anser. Anser has a great relationship with the district, and they almost negotiated use of one of the district's school buildings. They have a model that other charter schools and districts can use. Three students left Anser this year and three new students entered ­ choice is there and that's what's important.
PRO Mrs. Frances Vincent Brown, parent, talked about the importance of IDVA, and the ability to teach at home so parents can learn their children's real likes is a blessing. She said IDVA is a complete program with excellent staff, dedicated teachers and children excited about learning. Students have opportunities to socialize through monthly field trips.
PRO Mr. Michael Vincent Brown, sixth grade student at IDVA, likes the fact that the curricula builds, and he can check his own progress. When he needs help he is not afraid to ask because his Mother is the teacher and she can explain it to him. He mentioned having problems with a math concept at his first school and after he asked twice and still didn't understand, he was afraid to ask again. He said public schools have advantages if you are accepted by your peers.
Mr. Jon Allen, CFO, Nampa School District #131, voiced his concern that the current state funding formula for charter schools is creating a disproportionate appropriation, favorable to students in charter schools. He pointed out that the Idaho constitution instructs the legislature to "establish and maintain a general, uniform and thorough system of public, free common schools." Our predecessors certainly had the vision to understand the importance of an educated society. He stressed that 33-5202 speaks to all students. Mr. Allen provided statistics showing that in 2003 that charter schools generated 37.78 more units than the same students in their granting district. (Full analysis and Mr. Allen's recommendation for an amendment are contained in Attachment 18).
PRO Mrs. Tami Bennett, parent, spoke in support of charter schools and parental choice. We cannot have the attitude that one model fits all. The Compass Charter School Board has been working for 9 months trying to get their charter approved and the process is grueling. She urged that they support the OSBE as they seek to make charter schools more accessible, and strongly urged that they have a separate entity governing charter schools (Attachment 19).
Mrs. Gayle O'Donahue, parent, indicated she is on the governing board of Victory Charter and an employee at Liberty. She said she is not asking for money and not here to make charter school creation easy. Charters are not the only successful way to learn, and we need to keep choice alive and well ­ not everyone has to subscribe. Mrs. O'Donahue feels it is unfortunate that the law is being used to keep charter schools from opening and urged everyone to take a look at the process for approving.
Mrs. Maegan Davis, parent on the board with the Compass Public Charter School application, stated she couldn't believe the amount of politics involved within the education system. She is concerned when a public official inquires what is best for Idaho's children and then turns to high-powered politicians for the answer. Parents know what's best. The process to have a charter passes is met with great adversity. (Full testimony found in Attachment 20).
Dr. Cliff Green, Executive Director, Idaho School Boards Association, stated that ISBA publicly supports charter schools, but charter law needs clarification and is the rancor between school boards and charter schools. Dr. Green identified additional concerns not addressed last session as equitable funding, multi-district charter schools, and definition of Local Education Agency (LEA). These concerns as well as civil rights violations and liability for debt are addressed in Attachment 21.
Mrs. Ann Ritter, Meridian School Board, described the charter application process as deliberate, complete and accurate. She said the Board has received applications only two-thirds of a page. Many charter school students are gifted and talented. School boards have no means of checking for accountability ­ the only control is when the charter application is submitted. Problems relating to the ISAT and NCLB seem to come back to the district.
CON Ms. Jan Sylvester, resident of Meridian, asked that the committees address the following issues pertaining to charter schools in Idaho:

(1) Charter School compliance with laws and admission procedures ­ enforce laws; (2) use of federal grant money ­ comply with the guidelines and intent of the program; (3) create opportunities for enrollment and eliminate wait lists; (4) align state charter laws and the OSBE temporary rules as they pertain to the selection of students. (Full testimony found in Attachment 22).

Mrs. Bridget Barnus, parent, explained she is guardian of two girls attending Capital High School and has a son, BJ, enrolled in the IDVA. The IDVA fits individual needs and sets forth the ground work of choice. BJ could read at four and would have been bored and disruptive in public kindergarten where the tradition is to learn the alphabet.
Mrs. Julie VanOrden, past PTA President, and trustee on the Snake River School Board, made it clear she believes in holding charter schools to the same accountability as public schools. Allowing immunities from accountability is undermining.
PRO Mrs. Leslie Mauldin, parent, spoke in support of charter schools. She has done a lot of research and as a parent is interested in ways schools are improving. According to the Education Freedom Index, states with more education freedom have higher average student achievement. Increasing educational freedom is one of the most practical ways for policymakers to improve the quality of education (Attachment 23).
PRO Mr. Kevin Hulsey, Physical Therapist, parent and teacher at Liberty, expressed his support for charter schools. He applauds those visionary people who passed the legislation to create charter schools. He acknowledged the system is far from perfect.
PRO Mrs. Irene Myers, homemaker, spoke in support of charter schools. She is a taxpayer and asked that they please help charter schools continue.
PRO Ms. Jessie Richards, senior at Liberty Charter, spoke in favor of charter schools. High school is about learning to be the people they will be. Liberty teaches morals and teaches them how to be the best they can be. She urged the same opportunity for other students.
PRO Mr. David Johnson, senior at Liberty Charter, indicated the main goal at Liberty is to teach students their potential. He feels the power to excel is in the mind, and students are challenged to take their knowledge further.
PRO Ms. Emily Harris, student at Liberty Charter, stated that what impresses her most about Liberty is when students present his or her most esteemed work. They are taught to lead a life of character.
PRO Mrs. Christalina Jensen, parent and President of the Compass Charter School, talked about the approval proceedings for charter authority. Clarity is lacking and the State School Board is confused about expectations. She indicated that they were one of the first groups to fill out the new application, and their application went from 56 to 1500 pages. She said other chartering entities would take away the burden from the school district.
PRO Mrs. Janis Araki, mother, spoke in support of charter schools. She said her children are in Liberty Charter School, and she volunteers to help grade papers, tutor students or organize school lunches. Tax dollars should follow the children. She doesn't understand why creating charter schools is so controversial. The Nampa school district has taken an adversarial position and the superintendent made the statement that charter school legislation was adopted because they believe public schools are failing. (Full testimony found in Attachment 24).
PRO Mrs. Shiela Bryant, mother, voiced her support for education choice for what method/system best meets children's needs. She asked that the legislature continue the vision, provide alternative sponsoring agents, support temporary OSBE rules that clarify expectations, and consider what's best for the kids who will be running our businesses and our government.
PRO Mrs. Nancy Despain, parent, is a U.S. Citizen and is thankful for the opportunity to vote. She has a 9th grader at Hidden Springs. She feels this is an exciting time, and we have the ability to change the face of education in Idaho. We owe it to our children to secure a good education, charters are more efficient, charters are unified in one goal and charters have higher performance.
PRO Gregg and Mindy Vance, parents from Moscow, District 6, spoke in support of charter schools. Mindy asked that the Legislators put their political agendas in their pockets, and that they look at the faces of the children. Gregg asked for clarity and the freedom to choose ­ let funding follow the child.
PRO Ms. Meredith DeMordaunt, sixth grade student, North Star Charter School, spoke in support of charters. She said there are many who say students at charters are just spoiled children. She doesn't believe this and said her ISAT scores are soaring. She also has two siblings at North Star.
PRO Mr. Steven Shear, parent, Idaho Leadership Academy, voiced his support for charters. He said he has five and a half dozen kids and the first 6 years they were in public schools and then they homeschooled for 20 years. The Idaho Leadership Academy is very much a success and DVA is exciting, but a full time job. He reminded them this is an evolving process ­ they need help to start a charter at Idaho Falls.
PRO Mr. Gary Larsen, principal at Idaho Leadership Academy, mentioned that his Father was once Speaker of the House and his Grandfather also served in the Idaho Legislature. He stated his plea is for good legislation for charter schools. Their local Superintendent says it is not about the money ­ make life easier.
PRO Mr. Jim Bauman, minister in Nampa, spoke in favor of charter schools. He has a son at Liberty and said he calls the administration all the time. His son struggles with school and the structure at Liberty is conducive to his learning. He supports the way they choose their board members. Change is good if it is about children.
PRO Mrs. Jolene Wallace, Director, Blackfoot Charter, voiced her support for charter schools. She has seven sons and some attend public schools and some attend the Idaho Leadership Academy. She said the Blackfoot Charter has its uniqueness and tends to be multi-age ­ everyone is treated as a family. Try to treat students as individuals and meet their needs. Students who transfer in and are behind or struggling appreciate choice.
PRO Mrs. Gale E. Pooley, Chairman of the Board at North Star, stated she has a great relationship with the school board. She indicated they just opened a new building and saved taxpayers about $3 million. About 30,000 hours were donated by parents and students to build the school ­ must get parents back in the classroom.
PRO Mr. Mario Wade, student at North Star, stated the advantages of attending North Star are more selection, learning faster and better, and becoming a better citizen.
PRO Mr. Cees Hofman, student at North Star, stated that charter schools provide the opportunities to be virtuous leaders and allow faster and better learning. He did have a negative attitude to the dress code at first.
PRO Mr. Jay Polley, student at North Star, asked that more charter schools are encouraged. Teachers are great and can handle 32 kids per classroom, and faster and better learning takes place. He is working on his Eagle scout and the school provides many opportunities for service.
PRO Mr. Jordan Borup, student at North Star, asked that charter schools be expanded. Admitted he hasn't always liked school because he struggles with math, but his sisters love it . His sisters are learning Spanish, and he is amazed at how well they speak it.
PRO Mrs. Leela Schafer, homemaker and teacher, supports charters. She has two daughters at Liberty and said she appreciates all the testimony given today.
PRO Mrs. Lourieann Shoemaker, parent, is pro education opportunity. She thanked parents and charters schools ­ they are enablers and Idahoans want choices. She said even though she was provided an abundance of education opportunities in the East at the best schools, she wants more for her daughter. Enable charters through laws and come up with a solutions to the problems.
PRO Mr. Terry Bower, parent and business owner, voiced his support for charter schools. He said charter schools are holding parents, students and schools accountable. At Liberty the ISAT scores are excellent, and students are reading above grade level.
PRO Mr. Alan Jones, foreman, stated he is the parent of an IDVA student and maintains an education that allows freedom to choose works best. He is thankful for the charter school laws and the flexibility the IDVA allows with family schedules ­ his wife is much more at ease. Children learn more when everyone is happier.
PRO Mrs. Vicki Asay, homemaker, stated she is a proponent of charter schools and school choice. Her family interviewed principals at several schools, and they were disappointed at what was available for Gifted and Talented students, so they chose Liberty Charter. She acknowledged that public schools provide many services to many students. Urged that charter school legislation be made stronger and clearer.
PRO Mr. Reed DeMordaunt, parent, began by saying he has seen empowered parents here today! The question is how we can empower more, and the answer seems to be in charters. Charter schools are characterized along economic lines, but there is research showing this is not the case, i.e. Delaware Charter School. He encouraged that we create a policy providing incentives and that we look at other authorizing bodies.
CON Ms. Molly Lazechko, Legislative Chair, Retired Educator's Association, stated that her association has concerns about expanding the number of charter schools because it could drain public school district's budgets and fund elitism. They fear school districts' ability to maintain a diverse student body and they believe in absolute accountability (Attachment 24).
PRO Mrs. Linda Erving, parent, spoke in support of the IDVA. She has six children and they are now enrolled in the IDVA where they don't have to deal with negative attitudes and no lunch ­ they can focus on their studies.
PRO Mrs. Stacy Holton, parent, stated she has children enrolled in the IDVA and thanked the committee members for their support of that school.
Written testimony was submitted by Mrs. Theresa Mccollum (Attachment 26) and by R. Paul Walker (Attachment 27).
ADJOURN: Senator Schroeder thanked everyone, saying their testimony will be considered. The joint meeting was adjourned the meeting at 11:40 A.M.




DATE: January 23, 2004
TIME: 8:30 A.M.
PLACE: Gold Room
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Rydalch, Cannon, Kulczyk
GUESTS: Please refer to presenters highlighted below and to the committee sign-in sheets.
Chairman Barraclough called the joint meeting to order at 8:38 A.M., welcoming everyone. He informed the committees that 78 people testified on charter schools on Thursday.
Dr. Carolyn Mauer, Bureau Chief of Curriculum, State Department of Education stated she is the liaison for charter schools in Idaho. She introduced eight charter school administrators who are in Boise for a workshop this week. Those introduced were Gary Messinger, Meridian Medical Arts Charter High School, Meridian; Matt Dorsey, Thomas Jefferson Charter School, Caldwell; Nancy Smith, North Star Charter School, Eagle; Anita Ogden, White Pine Charter School, Idaho Falls; Larry Slade, Idaho Virtual High School; Chase Trap, Idaho Virtual Academy, Pixie Vasquez, Sandpoint Charter School, Sandpoint; Steve Adams, Idaho Leadership Academy, Pingree.
Mr. William von Tagan, Deputy Attorney General, Intergovernmental & Fiscal Law Division, provided copies of an Attorney General's Legal Guideline in response to Senator Schroeder's September 15, 2003 letter in which he asked two questions about the separation of powers (Attachment 1. The two questions asked were:

1. Does the State Board of Education's order that the State Department of Education base funding on "average district per-pupil budgeted expenditure of the previous year of multi-district public charters and non-resident students" and "deduct the funds for public charter schools from the allocation to the resident districts and send them directly to the public charter school where the students are enrolled" prevail over the budgeting and appropriations authority of the legislature?

2. Is the State Board of Education's order to base funding on "average per-pupil budgeted expenditure of the previous year for multi-district public charters and non-resident students" and "deduct the funds for public charter schools from the allocation to the resident districts and send them directly to the public charter school where the students are enrolled" contrary to the FY 2003 session laws and existing laws governing the funding formula for school districts and charter schools?

Mr. von Tagen explained that the powers of the government in Idaho are divided into three distinct departments, the legislative, executive and judicial, and lines can't be crossed. Art. IX, sec. 1 of the Idaho Constitution states that "...it shall be the duty of the legislature of Idaho, to establish and maintain a general, uniform and thorough system of public, free common schools." Art. IX, sec. 2 of the Idaho Constitution provides that "... [t]he general supervision of the state educational institutions and public school system of the state of Idaho, shall be vested in a state board of education, the membership, powers and duties of which shall be prescribed by law."

Mr. von Tagen concluded that only the Idaho Legislature has plenary power and authority to appropriate funds in support of the public school system, and to prescribe the means and manner in which such funds are apportioned to the local school districts and public charter schools. Also, the resolution adopted by the Board relating to the funding of certain public charter schools prescribes a means and manner of apportioning funds to such schools that is materially contrary to the funding mechanism established by the Legislature. When expending funds based on the formula, the unique characteristics of the district are taken into account, and the formula may change based on experience of teachers and other factors. This can be changed, but only by the Legislature. Mr. von Tagen responded to committee questions.

A committee member asked if the characteristics are different for a charter school when the charter is authorized by a district school board, and Mr. von Tagen said basically yes.

Another question was asked how the formula applies when students come from a foreign country or out-of-state and a charter school employee comes from a business entity, and Mr. von Tagen's response was that he would need to do more research.

In response to what happens if the Board fails to carry out its powers or they go beyond their authority, Mr. von Tagen said if they are over-stepping their bounds a writ of prohibition can be issued by the court, and they can be called to account for the money spent.

Chairman Barraclough asked what Mr. von Tagen's counsel would be in the case of IDVA where they will go out of business if funding is not received, Mr. von Tagen said this doesn't have to happen, and the committees need to decide if they will hold fast to the funding formula. The formula is outdated for these types of situations.

When asked about the draft rules where the Office of the State Board would be the authoring entity for charter schools, Mr. von Tagen said that he felt he could not answer something with so many ramifications. Senator Schroeder indicated there would be meetings with people from the IDVA to gather information so we can proceed to resolve this situation so kids can keep learning. A subcommittee will be looking at virtual learning for Idaho and making recommendations.

Mr. Tom Farley, Chief, Bureau of Federal Programs, State Department of Education, addressed questions that surfaced in previous meetings about possible unexpended federal funds and provided a spreadsheet showing "Expenditure of Funds Awarded to the Idaho Department of Education" (Attachment 2). At the close of the 2001 federal funding cycle, which closed December 31, 2003, Idaho had $29,066.46 that was not drawn from available federal appropriations or expended. Of the $94,574,280 of the U.S. Department of Education federal funds made available July 1, 2001 this represents approximately .03 of one percent of the available funds as shown on the SDE and federal produced reports. There are various reasons why this money wasn't spent, and in some cases, it was not feasible to spend all of the funds.

Mr. Farley explained due to a twenty-seven month spending authority, states and school districts may draw on their available funds through September 30 two years following the initial availability of their allocations. And, following September 30 of that year, a district has another 90 days to fulfill any obligations they may have from those funds. He said that Idaho schools spend their funds judiciously, and all accounts managed by the SDE are audited annually.

Mr Farley responded to committee questions as follows:

How does the money on the table for NCLB that we heard about earlier in the week fit here, and how are states notified? No money is left on the table for NCLB at this time, and each state is notified under Title I.

Define obligation and expenditure. Appropriation is the amount identified; obligation is a plan rather than a commitment; expenditure is actual spending.

What's creating the discrepancy in what we were told earlier about NCLB funds being on the table and what you are saying. An unclear understanding of how funds are received and drawn down over a 27-month period.

When does the 27-month period begin and end? It begins July 1 and ends September 30 unless funds are obligated but not spent and then an additional 90 days is given until December 31.

Ms. Kathy Phelan, President, Idaho Education Association, congratulated the committees on the past three days of hearings. She stated we've heard testimony that begins the process of defining what public education means to Idaho. Ms. Phelan provided her thoughts on the hearings held for NCLB, ISAT, and charter schools, and then presented the IEA's testimony on charter schools (See Attachment 3).

NCLB ­ "Tuesday we heard about the so-called NCLB federal mandate. An expensive, simplistic, rigid, punitive one-size-fits-all federal law that assumes all children in the same grade learn the same things at the same time...."

ISAT - "Wednesday we heard that if we adopt a so-far unproven exit exam, it's not really high stakes because a student can take it multiple times. And then we learned that a test proves its reliability when a person takes it multiple times and gets the same result. We oppose using the ISAT as an obstacle to graduation..."

Charter Schools ­ "Yesterday we heard about the effectiveness of small learning communities, individualized instruction, individual attention and the power of parental involvement­parents involved in their schools love them. Ms. Phelan testified that "the Idaho Education Association has always supported public charter schools and was an active participant in the discussions that created current charter school legislation."

She offered three important improvements: (1) adding clarification regarding the fair and open election of charter school board members; (2) adding language to clarify that all students must have equal opportunity to apply and be selected for charter school attendance; and (3) adding language requiring charter schools and the local school district in which the charter school exists to create and implement a procedure for regular exchanges of learning that might be applied in the regular public school environment. Ms. Phelan closed by asking that they "please strengthen the public charter law. Don't allow public funds to be siphoned into what are essentially private and home schools. Please strengthen Idaho's commitment to public education."

Dr. Randy Thompson, Chief Academic Officer, Office of the State Board, presented his report on "The State of Charter Schools in Idaho". Dr. Thompson said as mandated under Idaho Code 33-5212, the OSBE shall review the education effectiveness of charter schools under the provisions of this chapter and shall report to the legislature no later than July 1, 2004. A Subcommittee has been appointed and the members are Laird Stone, Chair; Karen McGee; Blake Hall; and Marilyn Howard. The legislative intent is to:

Improve student learning

Increase learning opportunities/expand learning experience

Include different and innovative teaching methods

Utilize virtual distance and on-line learning

Create new professional opportunities for teachers

Provide parents/students with expanded choice

Hold schools accountable

Dr. Thompson provided the following information regarding public charter schools and the issues surrounding them. Public charter schools must comply with all federal and state laws and (1) work with local school boards on how they intend to meet legal requirements; (2) have comprehensive education program (33-5205(3); and (3) have a structured business plan (33-5205(3).

The charter school appeal process as defined in Rule 33-5207(5)(b) states: "The petitioners for the establishment of the new charter school may appeal to the State Board of Education. The State Board of Education shall hold a public hearing at its next regular meeting and shall approve the charter for the establishment of a new charter school if it determines that the local board of trustees failed to appropriately consider the charter request, or if the local board acted in an arbitrary manner in denying the request.

Dr. Thompson reported that OSBE identified 17 current issues with input from IASA, ISBA, IEA, local school districts, parents, community members and Legislators: (1) local control; (2) parental choice; (3) governance; (4) fiscal accountability; (5) sharing of "best practices"; (6) authority to grant charters; (7) roles and expectations; (8) access to education; (9) consistent review and approval process; (10) consistent timeline for application process; (11) clarity in appeals process; (12) governance of entities delivering education in more than one district; (13) enrollment (non discrimination, open to public, founders); (14) replication of successful education models (33-5202(3) Legislative Intent); (15) renewal and revocation of public charters; (16) oversight of Board approved schools; and (17) virtual school delivery.

The Board responded by drafting temporary rule 08.02.04 that:

  • Creates a definition of multi-district public charter school
  • Establishes a consistent process for the review and approval of public charter schools
  • Establishes a time-line for the approval process
  • Defines founders and creates a standard for assigning seats for founder' children
  • Clarifies oversight responsibilities, including renewal and revocation of charters
  • Allows the Board to delegate oversight of Board approved schools to an executive agency
  • Eliminate the liability to local districts resulting from a public charter's approval by the Board
  • Clarifies and supports non-discrimination in public charter school enrollment
  • Removes the sections related to geographical limitations on approvals because this section of the code has expired


The Board has issued a guidance memorandum addressing average daily attendance, the foundation's principle of "money follows student" and the distribution of federal funds. The Board is committed to perform oversight.

Senator Schroeder asked if this is his statutorily required report to the Legislature, and Dr. Thompson said he meant to talk to both Chairmen about this.

A lengthy question and answer period followed with questions centering around (1) the appeal process; (2) success of charter schools and the plan to integrate innovative ideas and practices into the traditional schools; (3) selectiveness of students and access to all; and (4) measuring growth of students without a standardized test.

(1) Appeal Process ­ There seems to be an inconsistency in the spirit of the Board's finding of fact in respect to the trustees granting the Nampa II charter. It seems to indicate that if a group submits a charter in compliance with the law that the trustees "must" or "shall" grant the charter where 33-5205(3) states trustees "may" grant charter. Dr. Thompson indicated that he is not in a position to speak on legal matters, but the State Board was trying to ensure there was adequate consideration given and no arbitrary actions were taken. When asked what the hearing officer's recommendations were back to the Nampa school board regarding Nampa II, Dr. Thompson said he would feel uncomfortable trying to speak to this.

Senator Schroeder reminded Dr. Thompson that based on Mr. von Tagen findings on the separation of powers communicated to him, he needs to come and speak to the Legislators about item # 5 of the temporary rule above. Dr. Thompson said he would always be willing to visit with them.

(2) Success of charter schools and the plan to integrate innovative ideas and practices into the traditional schools -- In response to questions about the successes in charter schools and the plans/recommendations to integrate innovative ideas and practices in the traditional public schools, Dr. Thompson indicated that one method widely used by charter schools is the Harbor method, and this method has been adopted by one school in the Boise School District. He also mentioned that he has had conversations with higher education to look at the methods being used and incorporate the best practices into their future course work. It was pointed out that individualized training, small classes, students working at their own pace are not luxuries afforded to traditional schools. Dr. Thompson assured them the Board would be working to analyze the different types of techniques and would recommend how these innovations can be incorporated into the traditional schools.

(3) Selectiveness of students and access to all -- Dr. Thompson was asked if, in his view, he felt that the success of charter schools and the high scores on the ISAT weren't because of the selectiveness of students, parent participation, selective atmosphere rather than the quality of teachers or the methods used? His response was that one of the critiques of educational research shows a lack of rigorous scientific methodology, and in order to be effective we need to determine growth of a student. The data we have right now is "ending" data which is misleading. We don't have the data to support that theory. It is proven that involved parents and teachers provide an extra advantage to students, and the Board will include ways to draw parents in. When asked if the Board will be working with the stakeholders, specifically the Hispanic and Tribal Caucus to provide charter school access to all, he said they would. A subcommittee will be looking at the gaps. This concern will be a topic of discussion on the Board's agenda and is a priority.

(4) Measuring growth of students without a standardized test -- You indicated we need to be scientific when evaluating growth, how can this happen when the fall and spring tests are unrelated? Dr. Thompson indicated that both tests have shown to measure growth. They both have leveling components and the Board has requested they be made comparable.

Dr. Bob West, Assistant Deputy State Superintendent, State Department of Education, presented the Department's testimony on charter schools (Attachment 4). "The Idaho State Department of Education (SDE) recognizes charter schools to be an important choice within the public school system of Idaho. It is important public policy." Dr. West provided background information on charter schools, stating that Idaho is one of 40 states and the District of Columbia that has passed charter school legislation. He provided a table listing which entities grant charters in various states, indicating that only Idaho and California allow an appeal to the state board of education (Attachment 4).

Dr. Howard has sought and has received two highly competitive federal grants in the amount of $4.8 million in direct assistance and a multi-year grant for $4.1 million to help new charters with planning and implementation assistance. He stated that "Dr. Howard remains committed to the endurable development and support of charter schools."

Dr. West addressed Idaho charter schools and the current issues surrounding them. He pointed out that there are 16 charter school in operation with 2, as far as we know, to begin next fall. As of the first Friday in November, there were 4,767 students enrolled in charter schools, among the 252,218 statewide total of all students enrolled. A list of charter schools and an enrollment report are included in Attachment 4.

One of the issues that has been raised for several years is the official legal status of a charter school, because it is organized under the nonprofit corporation act. The Deputy Attorney General said charter schools are public schools for all purposes (Idaho Code 33-5204). Charter schools authorized by district trustees are part of the school district in which they are located, though they operate independently within the district according to what is in the charter. Although the schools are organized under the Idaho Nonprofit Corporations Act, Idaho Code 33-5204(1) provides that "...The board of directors of a charter school shall be deemed public agents authorized by a public school district or the State Board of Education to control the charter school... A charter school shall be considered a public school for all purposes."

To help clarify what it means to be a public school, and to reinforce what seems to be legislative intent, the SDE suggests that:

All governing board business of charter schools be open and follow the education statutes required of public schools receiving public money.

The description of 7 components of Legislative intent given in Idaho Code 33-5202 that describe the purpose for charter schools seems to need clarification at item number 3, which states, "It is the intent of the legislature to provide opportunities...to...(3) Include the use of different and innovative teaching methods."

Elections of charter school governing boards needs to be addressed and perhaps better defined in public policy.

The selection for enrollment of the number of students, where the number of applicants exceeds the available seats, remains an issue.

The process of how school boards or the state board may better deal with a charter school where problems are found needs examining.

School districts are liable for acts or omissions of charter schools where federal agencies hold the Local Education Agency accountable and liable.

The funding of most charter schools seems to be working fine within the existing funding formula as defined in Idaho Code 33-5208.

There is concern that charter schools do not reflect the degree of diversity of racial and ethnic make up of the school district of which they are a part.

Dr. West concluded that by in large most charter schools, particularly where the school district is part of the planning and implementation process, as in Meridian and Boise school districts, are serving students and families well. There are some holes in public policy that need to be addressed through legislation. Senator Schroeder thanked Dr. West for the information and the focus on how we can resolve.

Responses to committee questions follow:

­ How does Nampa II charter school fit into the first paragraph on page 5,? Dr. West explained that as the chartering entity, the Nampa school board provides day-to-day oversight for federal and special education programs and must see that schools are in compliance.

­ When asked about data on the socio-economic makeup of charter school, Dr. Thompson responded that socio-economic makeup makes a difference in the starting point, and that data is not quite ready, but it is being tabulated and massaged from ISAT.

­ On page 5, wouldn't it be better to have complete separation in statute because now for funding purposes they are their own districts, but policy decisions fall to the school boards? Dr. West stated that anytime legislators make something clear in law it helps.

­ On page 4, selection process, would new charter schools give preference to siblings if one of the children is drawn in the lottery? Dr. West explained that the first year students are selected randomly from a hat, and in the second year siblings are give preference. Other concerns/comments on selection were that if children of board members can be self-selected, this is not equitable. Parents have always had the alternative of private schools, and legislators should not set a quota. Dr. West mentioned that there could be implications of Civil Rights violations if charter schools become too selective.

­ Are public schools as equitable as we think, because some parents get a job in a particular community so their children can go to that school? Dr. West responded by saying that Idaho Code allows for an open enrollment policy.

Ms. Teresa Molitor, Vice President of Human Resources and Education, Idaho Association of Commerce & Industry (IACI), reported that last month IACI's Board of Directors approved education policies that, in part, express support for innovations in public education (Attachment 5). IACI has been pleased with the efforts by the State Board of Education (OSBE) that attempt to appropriately promulgate rules addressing the "one-size-does-not-fit-all" issue in public education, including rules on charter schools and accountability.

Based upon IACI's reading of the Idaho Constitution, Idaho Code, and Idaho case law, they support the general principle that the OSBE is responsible for governance of education policy in Idaho. She referred to Mr. von Tagen's earlier points regarding art. 9, sec. 2, and went on to cite that Idaho Code 33-116 states that all public schools are under the supervision of the State Board of Education. Idaho Code 33-125 directs that the State Department of Education (SDE) is an executive agency of the State Board of Education and that the Superintendent is responsible for carrying out the policies and procedures established by the State Board.

Ms. Molitor has been informed that in the past the OSBE focused on higher education issues, leaving much of the K-12 administration to the SDE and the Superintendent of Public Instruction. Since NCLB initiated a push for increased accountability, this Board has taken its constitutional duty more seriously, with a renewed focus on K-12 issues. The way IACI views it, the Board is comprised of seven individuals who are taking their responsibilities seriously. The bottom line is, the OSBE is charged with implementing the education policies that the Legislature has approved for this state. She urged they support the Board as it asserts its constitutionally-granted rulemaking authority implement the policies you have approved for Idaho's public education system.

Mr. Gary Stivers, Executive Director, OSBE, reported on the flow of federal education dollars for school year 2003 (Attachment 6). He stated that Idaho received $136,548,362 in federal grant monies and $131,438,004 was distributed to the SDE to administer the pass-through funding to local districts to implement activities. Of the $136,548,362, $5,110,358 went to the OSBE for oversight and policy development responsibilities. Figures are broken down for all of the Title I through Title VIII programs and for special education.

A breakdown of the $13,138,295 for Title II-A, improving teacher quality, shows that $135,671 of federal funds were spent for Administrative Costs ($118,280 SDE; and $17,391 OSBE), and $345,640 was spent on State Directed Activity for K-12 and $345,640 was spent for State Directed Activity for Higher Education. One area of concern regarding Title IIA funding is that fact that the OSBE has held back $175,000 of the Bilingual Education funds because of concerns about improvements in performance. They are looking at ways to develop a better program and improve performance.

Mr. Stivers talked about the Title VI funds targeted for state assessments and mentioned $3,907,307 was identified for "Other Academic Indicator". There is a strong desire that rather than use the money for another academic indicator, they use the funds for software that provides teachers with remediation tools. Mr. Stivers provided a flow chart titled "Federal Program Process Chart" and briefly discussed how the federal program responsibilities and dollars flow between the Board and the Department. This process helps assure funds are being spent on targeted activities.

Mr. Stivers was asked whether some of the NCLB federal funds could be used for technology based remediation to offset the Governor's recommendation to cut technology funding, and he said the money was earmarked for an assessment product.

Dr. Bob West, Chief Deputy State Superintendent, provided testimony of Rule Making and Federal Programs Administration on behalf of Dr. Marilyn Howard, Superintendent of Public Instruction (Full testimony, Attachment 7). The Legislature establishes and authorizes the system, the State Board provides general supervision and control through administrative rules and policy based on what the legislature sets up, and the SDE is charged with executing the policy and the enabling laws of K-12 public education. The SDE recognizes the separation of powers through which laws and ultimate public policy are created by the Legislature, and through which administrative rules are created by the State Board, as authorized by the Legislature. These things are mentioned to draw your attention to the Temporary/Proposed rules for charter schools, not yet before the legislature for review, but which the SDE will be charged with helping to implement.

A letter was written to the Deputy Attorney General to get his guidance on the charter school temporary rules. Because of the controversy and concerns surrounding charter school issues, and because they are such an important educational alternative to thousands of families in our state, it is imperative the standards be put in place in such a way that they will have the force of law as free as possible from dispute and opposition. The State Board wants very much to help solve a number of concerns, and the SDE wants to be able to be a partner to carry out the rules, as proposed, free from challenges that may thwart the goal of the improvements sought. Please see the letter dated December 30, 2003, addressed to Mr. Don Robertson (Attachment 8). SDE has two concerns: (1) the component of the new rules that establishes the creation of independent charter school districts or Local Education Agencies; and (2) the approval of a new kind of charter school, a multi-district charter school, from petitions that have not been first turned down by elected trustees. SDE's concerns are spelled out in detail in Attachment 7.

A good part of the issue surrounding these concerns deals with who has the power and authority to make what kinds of decisions and set up which standards. A 1998 letter to Representative Ron Black deals with the legal relationship between the Superintendent of Public Instruction and the State Board of Education (Attachment 9).

Regarding the division of responsibility for the implementation of federally funded programs, there is a concern about a disconnect between key programs to be implemented in schools. As a result of the Title III Limited English Proficiency Program being implemented by the OSBE and the Migrant Program being implemented by the SDE; the symbiosis and integration that was in place in now unraveling. Another layer of bureaucracy affecting school districts is developing. Instead of a consolidated approach for all of NCLB programs for Title I, II, III and V and federal special education, there will have to be two sets of needs assessments, two sets of plans, measuring systems, two data collection systems and two reporting systems. What was integrated for networking among directors in the field with one agency to implement these federal programs, as one comprehensive consolidated effort, will be disjointed and less effective.

SDE cited problems as (1) the inevitable learning curve to orient people in OSBE, (2) people in the field trying to figure out how to meet the direction and program review expectations of two different agencies, and (3) school administrators and teachers having to complete double paper work. This creates more inefficiencies, puts more pressure on school personnel, and will cost more for administration.

Senator Nay thanked Dr West for calling their attention to the breakdown of the consolidated plan.
ADJOURN: Representative Barraclough thanked all who attended and commented we have great challenges ahead. Senator Schroeder suggested they all get credit hours for their efforts this week. The meeting was adjourned at 11:35 A.M.




DATE: January 27, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:06 A.M. with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: Minutes from January 14, 20, and 21, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Andersen made a motion to accept the minutes of January 14 as printed. The motion carried by voice vote. Representative Lake made a motion to accept the minutes of January 20 as printed. The motion carried by voice vote. Representative Rydalch made a motion to accept the minutes of January 21 as printed. The motion carried by voice vote.
Chairman Barraclough thanked the committee for their persistence last week in the joint meetings. He briefly discussed the seriousness of the situations regarding Liberty's charter and funding for the Idaho Virtual Academy. He said several people are working on charter school legislation and there are ongoing efforts to lengthen the charter renewal period. Chairman Barraclough voiced his concern about what happens to Liberty may affect new charters. The bank will withdraw its support if the charter is not approved. The debate last week was centered on the role of public charter schools and how to use them to improve the education system; they are incubators for the system. Representative Trail pointed out that people tend to forget that many charters are working very well. Representative Rydalch mentioned that with all the problems in Nampa there is no alternative viewer except for the school board, creating a "no win" situation. We need to make the playing field even. Representative Boe asked for NCLB suggestions, and Representative Jones mentioned he has a report that might help.
Dr. Michael Burke, President, North Idaho College (NIC), briefed the committee on current activities at NIC. NIC was founded in 1933 and is the oldest college in Idaho. A 1934 College Annual was passed around that showed pictures of the four staff members, five graduating seniors and 54 freshman.

Dr. Burke presented highlights from NIC's 2003 annual report:

  • NIC's economic impact to the community is $106 million. In addition, NIC contributes intellectual wealth and puts students into the community, where they receive service credits. One very successful program is the NIC wrestlers reading to area first-graders as part of the Shirley Parker Reading Program.
  • NIC received high marks on its 10-year accreditation evaluation and received six commendations for its community involvement, fundraising and development, learning resources (management team running the library), leadership, campus climate and student success.
  • The Adult Basic Education Center was one of 12 chosen nationwide to participate in a study by the U.S. Department of Education. They graduated 532 GED students in 2002-2003.
  • NIC's student newspaper, The Sentinel, won two national first-place awards from the Society of Professional Journalists.
  • NIC's nursing students have had a 100% pass rate on the National nursing certification exam.
  • The core of NIC is its health and sciences program, and last year a team of high school and college students, including six from NIC, and engineers from Unmanned Systems Technologies placed seventh in the International Autonomous Underwater Vehicle competition in San Diego.
  • One of their students was named a New Century Scholar. His is married with four children and is now serving in Iraq.


Representative Rydalch suggested that Dr. Burke contact the U.S. Department of Navy and Defense Grants because they accept unsolicited proposals and might be able to help fund the underwater rover project.

NIC is growing dramatically in the professional technical and GED programs; young people are connecting the dots between education, quality of life, and economic stability. Students are now able to get their associate degree online. Dr. Burke thanked the committee for their support last year on the bonding legislation that made possible the new health and sciences building that will increase classroom space by 25%.

Dr. Burke responded to questions from the committee.

  • Number of Students from Washington attending NIC? About 3% of NIC's students are from Washington, and NIC offers them tuition reciprocity.
  • Budget cuts and the impact on teaching staff and students? Not sure the budget cuts have impacted morale because everyone is part of the solution. Their salaries are about 14-15% less than the private sector. Representative Tail added that folks understand the issues and are stoical about it.
  • Affect of extra taxes required of surrounding counties? Whole economic issue is sensitive. Two years ago additional money from legislation helped lower the tax levy. The communities are committed not to make taxes an issue for new businesses not relocating to that area.
  • Difficulty of GED vs. ISAT? Dr. Burke said he doesn't know how many questions are actually on the GED, but he can find out.
  • Are courses being accepted by other universities and colleges? NIC is sensitive to that issue, and they help the students map out their courses to make sure they will be accepted. The problem arises when students refocus their majors.
  • Demographics of students requiring remedial courses; how many coming out right out of high school? Dr. Burke indicated that many are adults who didn't take math as a senior or didn't focus on math; remedial courses are a bridge.
Dr. Dene Thomas, President, Lewis-Clark State College(LCSC), introduced Tony Fernandez, Provost, LCSC; Whitney Pugh, Director of Finance, LCSC; and Justin Coleman, President, ASLCSC. Dr. Thomas began her annual report to the committee, by stating it has been an interesting 2-1/2 years since she took over at NIC. She stressed that LCSC hires good teachers and they each teach four classes per semester.

LCSC's role and mission includes baccalaureate and associate degree programs, professional-technical education, and community college/community service. Their primary emphasis areas are business, criminal justice, nursing, profession-technical education, social work and teacher education. Dr. Thomas explained that LCSC does not overlap with the University of Idaho as much as some think. They have a presence in Coeur d'Alene where they offer six baccalaureate programs, and they have a very good working relationship with NIC.

LCSC's budget is tied to actions, and they have made dramatic progress since 1999. Enrollment has grown 11.7% since the fall of 2002. They experienced the largest percent increase of all 4-year schools in Idaho even as though they cut 16 positions and initiated major program cuts.

Accomplishments cited in the instruction area were:

  • Sustained quality programs in all six emphasis areas.
  • PACE (accelerated teacher certification initiative) cited as model by Idaho's MOST program.
  • National Nurse exam pass rate was 96.8%
  • Increased efficiency; consolidation/realignment of divisions (humanities, business, social sciences).
  • ROTC returned to LCSC campus.
  • New Rad-Tech and LPN programs are thriving. The hospitals in the region expressed a real need for this program and the LPN program grew out of the tremendous needs in long-term care facilities.
  • New CAMP initiative; strong growth this fall.
  • Review of general education core is underway.
  • Increased total student credit hour production despite cumulative budget cuts/reversion of general education and professional-technical funds.


LCSC's placements rates are very high ­ 96% for academic programs and 94% in the professional technical programs. Businesses are waiting for the students. The outreach centers and the Harbor Center in Coeur d'Alene serve over 5,000 students throughout Region II; they are Idaho virtual incubators. LCSC produced over 450 GED graduates, and she explained that the GED is more rigorous than the ISAT which tests minimum knowledge/skills. Programs are delivered to the Department of Corrections to educate and train men and women in prison and assist their families.

Dr. Thomas said even the athletic programs are thriving, even though she remains as athletic director. She thanked them for the multi-purpose activity center that last year's legislation made possible. In respect to salaries, LCSC raises as much money as possible through grants and contracts and have been quite successful since 2002. LCSC has gone without salary increases for the past two years, and they have had a 6% turnover. LCSC will loose 3 PhD's this year who were offered 50% more to go elsewhere. She stated that salary issues are about fairness and prevention. She closed by saying that LCSC has sustained its service to the region in a time of economic challenges and enrollment growth.

Representative Trail said the multipurpose site is impressive and relayed compliments from the school districts who say the best prepared student teachers come from LCSC.

Dr. Thomas responded to the following questions:

  • Which prison facilities does LCSC work with? LCSC works with Cottonwood and Orfino to provide basic skills to some and take others through to their GED or provide workforce training. They also teach anger management courses.
  • Do you teach classes to help new teachers teach the standards? Yes, Professor Jane Hill was involved in developing the Idaho standards.
  • How are you dealing with the fact that when the bonding legislation passed last year it did not include furniture for the mulipurpose building? LCSC has submitted a maintenance and operations request for $157,000 and if they do not get this, they will revisit the budget.
  • Do you have a feel for the number of nurses who graduate from your programs and stay in Idaho, and would it make sense to give students incentives to stay in Idaho? Dr. Thomas said many of the students go to work at St. Joseph's Hospital, but their biggest competition is Boise. She fears and incentive program would be very expensive, and we might drive them out of Idaho to attend school.
Chairman Barraclough thanked Dr. Burke and Dr. Thomas. He asked Justin Coleman, LCSC Student Body President, to tell about himself. Justin said he is a history and political science major and wants to go onto law school. Dr. Richard Moore, Professor, was also introduced.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 10:40 A.M.




DATE: January 28, 2004
TIME: 9:30 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:40 A.M. with a quorum being present.
Chairman Barraclough informed the committee that after the testimony last Thursday, Micron stepped up to the plate and provided a $150,000 grant to the Idaho Virtual Academy (IDVA). Apparently there are several Micron families who take advantage of the IDVA because of their extensive travel schedules. This is an exemplary example of the value of this program for the children. He also mentioned that Dr. Marilyn Howard presented the State Department's Public Education Budget to JFAC on Tuesday and asked for additional funds. Nothing was mentioned about the $800,000 trimmed from busing costs by one of his districts. The Joint Legislative Oversight Committee will be meeting tomorrow to review how transportation money was spent in 10 Idaho school districts. Also this afternoon in the Republican Caucus Room, an assistant to Deputy Undersecretary Eugene Hickok will be available to answer questions about NCLB.
Chairman Barraclough introduced Mr. Gary Michael, acting President, University of Idaho (UI), and former CEO of Albertsons, saying this may be a bad day to come before the committee in light of the announced student fee increases. UI will be selecting a new President in the next few weeks. Mr. Michael said today he would like to share with the committee his observations of his past eight months in education.
  • People at UI are very dedicated and thorough in what needs to be done.
  • Quality interchange processes are in place and will have a long-lasting affect. It was insightful for him to see the collaborative efforts going on, and the UI and Washington State work well together. He is preparing a report for the Governor on this.
  • UI is an economic engine for the state. He indicated it is not appropriate to talk here about the issues surrounding Idaho Place, but he indicated that UI had no business being the landlord. The state should be very proud of the water resources facility and the opportunities it will bring.
  • Budget hold backs have had a tremendous effect on the university. As they made their decisions, the leaders of the university had no choice but to raise student fees. Students are now paying about 32% of the tuition costs and are at about 90% of where their peers are. It may take students longer to go through school because of fee increases. Need to make sure we don't loose the brightest students or create a mediocre institution that has access, but poor quality. With proposals on the table, UI will be okay. These are tough decisions.
  • Never anticipated having to fire and hire a football coach.
  • Concentrated on things that were threatening. He visited all of the colleges and asked these questions:
  • (1) what do we look like?
  • (2) what do we want to be?
  • (3) where are the gaps and how do we close?
  • UI needs to commit to retain the 28 merit scholars on campus.
Mr. Michael responded to the following committee questions.

Trends in recent grant money? He doesn't have those numbers.

How much does UI spend on remedial courses? Not as much as other institutions. The Polimer Lab is set up for computerized training for some of the remedial courses.

In light of the recent discussions on chartering entities, how would you feel about UI being a chartering facility? This would need to be looked at, but he doesn't see this happening because their mission is to run a university and he doesn't see the resources being available.

Were student groups cut out of the decision process, because shortly before Christmas vacations they were asked for their input, but when they returned they learned that the Athletic Department would be taking over the recreation center? Mr. Michael stated he is proud of the student leadership and there were 14 issues out there that have received student input, but the bottom line is someone has to make a decision. He said they are looking at getting facilities management to take over the center which would be more efficient. He asked each department to re-engineer themselves, and he made it clear that he would be making more decisions before he leaves.

Are you aware of the redesigning of programs taking place at NIC & LSCS that are resulting in savings? Yes, I am aware and all of these things lend to efficiencies.

Is it important to proceed with standards and resources rather than starting and then delaying implementation and use of resources? Education world knows what's coming down the pipe, this is an important segment. In regards to expected accountability, is that not important? Answer was "yes".

Mr. Michael indicated that in 1998 the state funded 45% of higher education, and now the state revenues are about 34%. Not knowing what the future budgets will be, universities must stay on the cutting edge of obtaining funding. He feels the legislature did what they could last year. Universities on their own must raise money for faculty and student enhancements and develop a revenue model they can rely on. Morale on campus is tough. The 1% salary increase proposed by the Governor still leaves professor's pay about 25% less than it should be. You can't expect them to continue to stay.

Representative Block told Mr. Michael that his former classmates are very proud of him and think he is a credit to the state. Representative Trail thanked him for providing leadership at a difficult time and for addressing the fiscal problems. Mr. Michael said he doesn't deserve the credit, but then he has arthritis and he doesn't deserve that either. When he was asked what he planned to do in retirement, he said he hopes he doesn't flunk retirement. He is actively involved with 10 different companies at present, and he plans to stay very engaged. He said it has been fun to be at the UI and hang out with smart people.
Dr. Randy Thompson, Chief Academic Officer, Office of the State Board of Education was asked to present his information on the Consolidated Federal Plan. He asked to defer his comments until the plan is completed and approved.
Vice Chairman Lake was asked to give an update on the status of the agency rules. He said the subcommittee's work is now complete. Representative Trail's subcommittee has prepared a letter with their recommendations, and the ISAT subcommittee voted to recommend the rule be adopted, except for Sections 105 and 107. The full committee is scheduled to vote on the rules tomorrow morning.
Representative Garrett stated that the ISAT is a major issue facing the education community. Without the opportunity to ask questions in the joint meeting last week and not having the benefit of the testimony and answers to questions asked in the subcommittee, she is feeling much frustration. She said this is probably one of the most important decisions she will be making this session, and she needs this information when she meets with her constituents.

Representative Garrett said she doesn't have a complete copy of the rules and needs more time than just this evening to review the minutes. Representative Nielsen said he would also like a copy of the rules and time to review the minute book. Representative Trail concurred with Representative Garrett, saying he has had 300 email messages supporting educational choice and only two asked that the ISAT be tossed out.

Representative Lake said the subcommittee asked Dr. Howard if we should pull the plug on the ISAT, and she said "no". Representative Rydalch said she senses what Representative Garrett is feeling. She talked with her granddaughter and constituents over the weekend. Her granddaughter has taken the ISAT and thought it was "a piece of cake". From constituents she is hearing not to delay the process, and one of the teachers she talked to feels the ISAT is a good tool. Representative Rydalch said she is impressed with what's being done to address issues raised at the hearings.

Dr. Thompson was asked if he would yield to questions about exceptions for LEP students and those students on an IEP. Dr. Thompson clarified that this rule was developed to meet the legislative requirement that students and teachers will be held accountable in 2005. The rule was built with two components. One component will address the elements required by NCLB (proficiency scores and adequate yearly progress) and the other (Sections 105 and 107) will address state and federal graduation requirements. Section 105 does not replace a district's credit hour requirements nor does it replace the end of course tests given by teachers. Section 107 allows for a phased in approach and allows time for students to prepare. One of the legal issues with other states has been how long the students have been exposed to the standards, thus the two years of phase in. Dr. Thompson said he is very concerned about fairness to special education students because he has a granddaughter who has special needs. He mentioned the efforts by the superintendents to develop alternative graduation requirements. The State Board will review the alternative developed for graduation, but not mandate them. He closed by saying he is available day or night to review these issues and answer questions.
Ms. Carissa Miller, Program Manager, Assessment and Accountability, Office of the State Board of Education, informed the committee that on February 3 and 4, they will have an opportunity to take or review the ISAT test at Boise High School. They will be required to sign a disclosure statement, and the test will be delivered on a computer. They can take all three of the components or 1 or 2, and it takes approximately 40-45 minutes.
Dr. Thompson clarified that (1) the ISAT does not replace the GED and (2) local district alternatives will need to be in place prior to 2006 to provide a safety valve. He said there is not a teacher in Idaho who doesn't want children to succeed, and we need to help them. Representative Rydalch asked about the process for teachers and the public to receive information about the ISAT and NCLB. She is concerned that if teachers do not belong to Education, Inc. they are not receiving the needed information. Ms. Carissa Miller is providing training and the State Board and the State Department are working together on this issue. Dr. Thompson closed by saying he takes exception to the comments about the OSBE and the SDE being at war, and he assured the committee that they do work closely together and share information. Information is being put on the website to help educate everyone, and there are regular articles going out to the school boards.
Chairman Barraclough said it is the sense of the chair that the committee needs more time to review the rules. Therefore, we will not vote on the rules tomorrow. He does not believe in railroading the members.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 11:05 A.M.




DATE: January 28, 2004
TIME: 8:30 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Subcommittee Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Block, Bauer, Eberle, Kulczyk, Bayer, Boe, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please refer to the presenters highlighted below and to the committee sign-in sheet.
DOCKET NO.

08-0203-0301

Representative Lake, Subcommittee Chairman, called the meeting to order at 8:35 A.M., informing the subcommittee that the purpose of this meeting is to approve or reject Docket No.08-0203-0301. We have all heard a lot of testimony the last few days about the ISAT, and no one is saying to quit or not to proceed.
Representative Eberle asked for clarification about making changes to the rule, and Representative Lake explained that they could reject portions/sections of the rule, but not add or change the wording.
MOTION: Representative Eberle made a motion that the subcommittee recommend to the full committee that we adopt Docket No.

08-0203-0301 as written.

Representative Block debated against the motion, stating that her four school districts are supportive of everything, even accepting the ISAT, but not at this point in time. Representative Lake suggested that sophomores have two years before this becomes a graduation requirement, and he feels the State Board will have the wisdom to push out the date. Representative Eberle pointed out that there will be alternate pathways. Representative Jones said the date can be delayed by the State Board on their own initiative, but he highly recommends a letter be written to the State Board requiring them to set a different date. Do we know what the Senate proposes. Representative Lake said he did not.

Representative Boe asked for clarification of several Subsections under

Section 111, page 35. Ms. Karen Gustafson, OSBE, responded saying Subsection 111.03 was removed from the proposed rule. Subsection 111.07.10 & 13 were part of the original rule adopted two years ago. Regarding an external review required in 111.09.11c, an RFP is being prepared; this is in addition to what Dr. Keeler's committee is doing. In section 112.01c the districts would pay for the cost of remediation, but this has been a big question/issue throughout the discussions.

Representative Kulczyk asked how much has been spent on remediation and what are the future costs for remediation? Ms. Gustafson said that $4 million has been spent and future costs are unknown. Ms. Robin Nettinga, IEA, said they have been asking this question all along. At the October State Board meeting, IEA looked at the State Board's statements on remediation and estimate it will cost millions of dollars.

Representative Sayler presented his comments/concerns about ISAT to the subcommittee.
  • We heard several times last week "what we measure gets done". The converse is also true. His concern is that with data driven reform, only that which is measurable/quantifiable has value. He quoted Art Costa, Cal. State Professor of Education, who said, "What was once educationally significant, but difficult to measure, has been replaced by what is insignificant and easy to measure".
  • The ISAT is a minimal standard that focuses on a narrow part of education. ISAT does not adequately cover the standards and may not really prepare students for the world of work and college. There are higher level thinking skills, working relationships, problem solving, etc. that are not measured.
  • Major issues are (1) does it improve student learning/achievement and does it increase dropouts?; (2) cost ­ testing and remediation costs are unknown, but significant ­ there are no dollars in the budget; (3) libraries closed for testing; (4) public opinion in his district is against; and (5) there are many issues surrounding reliability and validity.
  • Asst. Superintendent Becky Ford, Post Falls, said "no child should graduate who can only pass the ISAT. There is much more needed." Standardized assessments such as ISAT ­ one size fits all ­ not appropriate. May force all students to be tested in same way although they learn differently and at different rates.
  • Task Force on Achievement Standards and Assessments for Students with Disabilities recommended an education policy based on best available education research and knowledge of learning. Multiple Intelligence Theory tells us that students learn differently. We are instructed to prepare lesson plans that incorporate that. We need accountability and we need multiple assessments to achieve the best for all students. I love the Nebraska Plan.
Representative Block stated she is proud of her school districts because they are supportive of standards, accountability, and improving the curriculum, and all they have asked is for more time to prove ISAT is valid and reliable. She said she will be voting "no" on the original motion. She is willing to help get the test to a point of reliability.
SUBSTITUTE MOTION: Representative Jones made a substitute motion to recommend to the full committee that we approve Docket No. 08-0203-0301 except for Sections 105 and 107 that deal with graduation requirements.
To respond to questions about not accepting Sections 105 and 107, Dr. Thompson thoroughly reviewed those sections of the rule (Attachment 1). He emphasized that the graduation requirements are designed to be phased in, and we will only be testing at a 10th grade level. He said Mr. Blake Hall, President of the Board, fears the ISAT may not be difficult enough. Representative Block asked Dr. Thompson how long it would be before they would have the results from an outside review? He said the Board is working with a national researcher to build the RFP and to select the review company. He is hopeful to have the analysis before the beginning of the next school year and any changes made by October.
AMENDED SUBSTITUTE MOTION: Representative Kulczyk asked if the full committee will have the final vote on this rule, and Representative Lake said they would. Representative Kulczyk made an amended substitute motion to send Docket No. 08-0203-0301 back to the full committee with no recommendation. Representative Boe opposed the amended substitute motion. Representative Lake stated that it was the responsibility of the subcommittee to provide a recommendation to the full committee.
Representative Bayer asked if he might make some general comments.
  • We are addressing a recognized traditional public school performance problem, and accountability and quality assurance are steps in the right direction. We must make progress now! We are not the only state dealing with this issue, and there are many issues to address and improve upon.
  • Regarding the time line, it may not be optional, but we must start somewhere!
  • Regarding testing basic material, it is reasonable to start with basic building blocks, as opposed to the completed building.
  • We have heard concerns regarding passing this basic test ­ imagine the fail rate if the test were even more comprehensive.
  • The threat of displacing other curriculum is unfortunate and I'm not convinced of its reality vs. being used as a tool against testing.
  • We must recognize the federal factors and the ties to funding, whether we like it or not.
Representative Eberle said he agrees with Representative Sayler and it was with great trepidation that he moved to adopt this rule. He is more afraid of not going ahead "paralysis of analysis". He said the graduation requirements do provide alternatives, we need to take the first step.
VOTE ON AMENDED SUBSTITUTE MOTION: There being no further debate, a vote was called for on the amended substitute motion to send Docket No. 08-0203-0301 back to the full committee with no recommendation. The motion failed by an 8 to 1 vote. Representatives Lake, Jones, Block, Bauer, Eberle, Bayer, Boe, and Sayler voted "nay", and Representative Kulczyk voted "aye".
Representative Jones stated we need to ensure legislative accountability and with cuts in technology and ISIMS coming on line this year, the graduation requirements are just another mandate. Representative Sayler said he would be supporting the substitute motion. Representative Bayer asked the consequences of deleting Sections 105 and 107. Dr. Thompson responded by saying it would eliminate the graduation requirements, leave the federal requirements in place, and not jeopardize the other requirements. Representative Jones explained that by eliminating this portion of the rule, the State Board has the authority to reimplement it as a temporary rule. Dr. Thompson stated the State Board appreciates direction, and this rule was driven from the business community and the legislature.
VOTE ON THE SUBSTITUTE MOTION: There being no further debate on the substitute motion to adopt Docket No. 08-0203-0301, except for Sections 105 and 107, the Chair called for a roll call vote and the motion passed by a 6 to 3 vote. Representatives Jones, Block, Bauer, Bayer, Boe, and Sayler voted "aye", and Representatives Lake, Eberle, and Kulczyk voted "nay".




DATE: January 29, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:07 A.M. with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: The minutes of January 22 were read, and Representative Lake made a motion to accept the minutes as printed. The motion carried.
Chairman Barraclough informed the committee that the Office of Performance and Evaluation will present two reports this afternoon at the J.R. Williams Building between 3:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. The reports are "Fiscal Accountability of Public Transportation" and "Administration and Oversight". The Office of Performance and Evaluation has agreed to come before the committee to present their findings.
Mr. Randy Tilley, Financial Management Analyst, Division of Financial Management, reported on the Governor's public school budget request. He received his BA at Idaho State University and his Masters from Boise State. He worked in state government for 20 years, and he has been with the Division of Financial Management for 10 years. He is much more familiar with inmate counts than with pupil counts, since he recently replaced Jeff Shinn who is now the Fiscal Officer for the Office of the State Board of Education.
Mr. Tilley provided the committee with a spreadsheet titled, "Comparison of Public Schools Budget Proposals" (Attachment 1). The spreadsheet shows a comparison of where we were last year, the Superintendent of Public Instruction's FY 2005 request, and the Governor's request (shaded area).

Mr. Tilley compared the figures on the Governor's request with those of the Superintendent's request, pointing out areas of major differences. The Land Board voted to reduce the endowment fund by $14.8 million which accounts for the reduction to the dedicated funds. This reduction was offset by about $2 million from an increase in the lottery dividends. A major difference between the requests, occurs at Lines 11 and 33. The Superintendent requested a 1% increase in the salary based apportionment, where the Governor decided to put $10 million into discretionary funds to allow the districts to use this for salaries, technology, supplies or where it is needed most. The most controversial difference seems to be on line 18, technology grants. The Governor is not recommending the one-time $5 million for technology, only the $3.4 million in the base. These decisions were made to ensure resources are available in 2006. The $24 million of state discretionary funds does include the $10 million in line 33. He called their attention to the $7 million on line 32 in the Education Stabilization Funds that can be used should support units increase. The Governor did not include the $5 million for ISAT intervention.

Mr. Tilley explained that they did not factor savings predicted by JLOC nor did they consider the findings of the Office of Performance Review since those reports are just being released. They rely on the expertise of the economic projection's staff to predict the overall revenue forecasts, and they rely on equalization from one area to another. When looking at overall budgets they look at funds available for out years. There may be savings this year, but support units may also be going up.
Mr. Tilley responded to committee questions:
  • Districts are distressed to see reductions in technology, especially because of the ISAT, ISIMS, software upgrades and technology support. In Line 9, are there any federal funds that can be used to support technology? In the past there have been grants for technology, but he couldn't find specific grants for technology. Mr. Luna reported that there are federal funds that can supplant state funds, and there may be $3-3.5 million for ISAT intervention or technology.
  • S-1560 addressed a lawsuit, and it seems by backing out the $10 million from the salary based apportionment, we're going backwards. Governor is recommending that the $10 million not be put in salary based apportionment.
  • How does the U.S. Department of Education's information that Idaho is not making full use of federal funds impact the budget? Mr. Tilley said he has started a process of trying to reconcile the reports on federal funds from the SDE, OSBE and the school districts. Because of the 27-month cycle it is difficult to match the appropriations with how much was spent. He will provide the information he has put together.
  • In the Governor's State of the State, he mentioned the final appropriation for White Pines ­ where would I find this? This would actually be a revenue transfer rather than an appropriation.
  • Why did the Governor not recommend money in Line 29 for ISAT Intervention with all the efforts going on and progress being made? Governor took a look at overall budget and had to make sacrifices. Intervention is happening, and the question is whether it is pulling resources away from other programs. The Indicator Study may provide for a program to assist teachers with remediation.
  • What information do you need to determine if resources are being taken away? Must rely on the State Department of Education to determine this.
  • What are the statutory requirements for Line 16, the $4.7 million for Safe and Drug Free Schools? These are dedicated funds from the cigarette tax and are divided between Corrections and public schools.
  • Explain Line 9, Floor. These dollars are used for equalization. School districts having a high property value receive less dollars, but statute says they should not receive 90% less than the previous year. In statute a floor is required to take care of districts that wouldn't receive tax dollars.
  • Superintendents in Twin Falls area say they are okay with the requirements, but they will need four new teachers for remediation. Where would there be money for new teachers? This will be dependent upon support units. If there is an increase in support units, there can be an increase in teachers. As the funding formula stands right now, there are no provisions for additional funds.
  • Where do figures come from for Line 8, Exceptional Contracts/Tuition Equivalents? These figures come from SDE.
Chairman Barraclough informed the committee that he would be reporting to JFAC on the education budget on February 11, and he needs their input. He mentioned that JFAC hopes to set the final budget by February 26, and it is predicted they will have to cut the Governor's budget for all agencies by $18 million. Concerns were voiced by committee members about whether these figures take into consideration the growth of charter schools, where does the IDVA fit, and the fact that the school superintendents brought forth S-1560 eight years ago, and now it seems we are going backwards. Representative Barraclough said these are all valid concerns/questions, and Dr. Howard will be before you on Monday so keep these in mind.

A committee member brought up the fact that virtual schools don't fit the mold, and we need to have more information about what's going on in these areas. The issue of ISAT and NCLB addressing the needs for students on the lower end of the scale and not enough being done for the gifted and talented was raised. It was asked if this couldn't be addressed by incorporating a virtual academy. Dr. Mike Friend was asked if he would speak to this. Dr. Friend explained that the IDLA in Mountain Home is a statewide school and the curriculum can be incorporated into other schools. In fact, Twin Falls is implementing one block through the IDLA and Meridian has its own virtual learning capabilities. When asked what percentage of virtual learning will take place in the next 25 years, Dr. Friend said it will be possible to obtain a masters or doctorate through virtual learning. He warned that there are special techniques and training for virtual education, and it certainly is not for every child or every teacher. It must be delivered so quality is maintained.

Chairman Barraclough said this is just the opening round on budget discussions, and he will be glad to schedule in people to address the concerns voiced here today.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 10:20 A.M.




DATE: January 30, 2004
TIME: 8:30 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representatives Bradford and Nielsen
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and to the committee sign-in sheets.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 8:40 with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: Minutes for January 19, 2004 for the Trail subcommittee (A) meeting were reviewed. Representative Cannon made a motion to accept the minutes as written. The motion carried.
The Chairman introduced Ms. Erin Hindman, Recruitment Manager, and Ms. Buffy DeBreaux-Watts, Director of Marketing & Outreach, American Board for Certification of Teacher Excellence. Ms. Watts provided a brief overview of what they do. The American Board is recognized as an approved provider of teacher certification in the new federal No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. Current certifications are available in Elementary Education (grades K-6); English (grades 6-12); and Math (grades 6-12). Candidates must have a Bachelor of Science Degree, provide official transcripts, have an FBI check and meet one of two American Board standards.

Ms. Watt stated the American Board for Certification of Teacher Excellence believes that all students are entitled to a quality education, and that a quality teacher with mastery in their subject area and professional teaching knowledge will make a difference in student learning. There focus is on student achievement and student growth. Idaho has seven active candidates. Representative Block mentioned she has three constituents who are interested.

Mr. Tim Hill, Bureau Chief, Finance and Transportation, State Department of Education (SDE), provided an overview of Idaho's Public School Foundation Formula (Attachment 1). He explained this is a very complicated formula that drives half of the public school funds, and he is here only to provide facts, not to take sides. He mentioned he spent 20 years in banking prior to coming to the SDE. For most of the members this is a refresher course, and there will be a test at the end ­ they have six tries to pass. Mr. Hill walked the committee through the attached charts. Due to time constraints, questions were deferred.
Mr. Ned Parrish, Principle Performance Evaluator, and Chris Shoop, Evaluator, Office of Performance and Evaluation, were introduced. It was explained that they have completed the reports on "Pupil Transportation" and "Administration and Oversight". Next, they will be looking at certification for superintendents and principals and business managers, school support and classified positions. Their focus is to look at ways the state can improve and look at school district accountability.
ADJOURN: Representative Andersen asked for clarification about what the Chairman's February 11 presentation to JFAC will entail. Chairman Barraclough said the focal point is what issues the committee would like taken forward. It will be beneficial for the committee to give direction, especially when it comes to intent language. There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 10:12 A.M.




DATE: February 2, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representative Jones
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and refer to the committee sign-in sheets.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:07 A.M. with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: The minutes of January 23, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Andersen made a motion to accept the minutes as printed. The motion carried.
Chairman Barraclough briefed the committee on the voluntary opportunity to review or take the ISAT test online at Boise High School Tuesday and Wednesday evenings. There will be a numbering system so no one will know who took which test, but you should be able to find out how you scored. Representative Sayler introduced two teachers from Coeur d'Alene, Ms. Sandy Bain and Ms. Willow Hanna. Vice Chairman Lake will be chairing the Tuesday morning meeting.
Chairman Barraclough summarized his thoughts on the overall budget situation, keying in on education. He said a 12-member legislative committee has predicted lower economic projections than the Governor's staff, so there may be less money available. The Governor looks at the overall budget and compares all agency requests before making his recommendation. JFAC looks at all of the budgets and massages them. It is not fair to continually cut other agencies, i.e. if Idaho Department of Water Resources is cut, the Snake River Basin project may be delayed or scrapped after 20 years of work. He is hearing that higher education is concerned about K-12 budgets being increased. He feels there are ways to cut the K-12 budget and mentioned the efforts of District 93 and 91 to cut transportation costs. He asked is the $39 million increase for public education more important than clean water? He doesn't get a sense that the State Department is trying to run public schools more economically. He emphasized that he is not anti-education, but is pro accountability.
Dr. Marilyn Howard, Superintendent of Public Education, State Department of Education, stated "she is happy to be here", even after those comments. She is pleased that Tim Hill had the opportunity last Friday to spend some time with the committee explaining the funding formula used for public schools. She credited him with being very accurate on the numbers predicted these past few years.

The department does think of ways to keep the budget on an even keel and move ahead. Through their support, the legislature allowed the reading initiative to move ahead and made sure Idaho has a good technology system in place. She stated she is coming to them with a budget cognizant of the state's economy, and one that reflects the requirements set forth in the statutes that are in place.

The1% salary increase in her budget is in line with the Governor's expectations across the board for all agencies. In order to keep technology in place, they are shifting funds, and they are offering up $2.5 million for remediation. She emphasized that the bottom line is that they care a lot about discretionary money, although the districts wonder just how discretionary it really is.

Mr. Tim Hill, Bureau Chief, Finance and Transportation, provided a spreadsheet entitled "Public School Support Program, Distribution Factor" (Attachment 1). He covered the items under Program Distribution, providing the following information.
  • 2a. Property Tax Replacement - estimated amount, about 1/10% of item 6. A $75 million cap was put into affect last year.
  • 2b. Transportation - a 3% increase was built in based on the current year's appropriation.
  • 2c. Border Contracts - For the welfare of students who might have to travel many miles to get to an Idaho school, they may attend a school in a neighboring state, and that state is reimbursed.
  • 2d. Exceptional Contracts and Tuition Equivalents - increase of $1 million requested - this covers district agency contracts, tuition equivalency, court ordered detention centers and juvenile corrections, special education, etc.
  • 2e. Floor - item is a function of those districts with high market value who would not receive tax dollars.
  • 2f. Program Adjustments - allows funds to correct errors, but this is where the SDE funds the Booth Memorial Home.
  • 2g. Salary Based Apportionment - the index used is a function of size (# of support units), who hired and who taught). If the statewide average goes up, all districts would take a reduction. He looks at recent history to determine the range of growth and uses a figure in the middle. The Stabilization Fund was established to help if estimates are too low.
  • 2h. Teacher Incentive Award (Natl Board Certification) - seeing a tapering off in the number of teachers applying for this, and Albertson Foundation funding has gone away.
  • 2k. State Paid Employee Benefits - because administrative staff has been reduced.
  • 1l. Substance Abuse - Safe and Drug Free Program funded through taxes on lottery winnings and cigarette taxes.
  • 2m. Bond Levy Equalization Support Program - this fund is a result of S1474 which pays a portion or all of the interest for districts who applied after September 15, 2002 and meet the requirements. Funds come from the lottery dividends and $2 million in general fund money to provide stability.
  • 2n. Technology Grants - JFAC has established intent language for items 2n. through 2r. The Governor is not recommending $5 million of one-time funding for technology in 2005. $3.4 million is part of the base. The ICTL receives $170,000 of expenses from this account, and LILI (state library program) receives $265,300 out of this account. Charter schools do receive a portion of these funds based on the previous year's ADA.
  • 2o. Idaho Reading Initiative - has been reduced by $500,000 because the number of children falling below the average has decreased, and most of the teachers in the system have received the training.
  • 2p. Limited English Proficient (LEP) - increased by $375,000 due to increased numbers of LEP students.
  • 2q. Idaho Digital Learning Academy - supplemental training provided to districts. Time spent doesn't generate hours, but can count towards the 4 hours required.
  • 2r. ISAT Intervention - $5 million was requested by SDE, but Governor is not recommending funding for this item. The $5 million request is based on intervention for approximately 40,000 students (25%) at $125 per student. It was pointed out that part of this is not new money, and $2.5 million would come from reductions/savings in least restrictive environment training, achievement standards implementation, and from IRI teacher training.
  • 2v. Annual Contract Support Program - funded for 2 years. Districts have been forced to use discretionary funds.
  • 2w. Federal Funds for Local School Districts - 1st year recognized on budget request. These funds don't affect discretionary funds.


Mr. Hill pointed out the reduction in dedicated funds, saying the Land Board voted to reduce the endowment fund by $14.8 million to allow for any shortfall in 2006. This reduction was offset by about $2 million from an increase in the lottery dividends.

A lengthy discussion followed that centered on two major concerns: (1) technology funding not recommended in the Governor's request; and (2) funding for the Idaho Virtual Academy (IDVA).

Technology Funding: The following points were made during the discussion on technology funding.

  • All school districts receive a portion of the technology funding based on the previous year's ADA. For this reason, new charter schools must wait a year before they receive technology funding.
  • Schools have received 1-time money for technology for 10 years.
  • Technology will continue to advance, and it is poor planning on the part of everyone involved not to have a strategic plan in place to ensure adequate funding is part of the base budget.
  • There are many costs involved with technology including software upgrades, information technology specialists, training, etc.
  • A source of federal funding for technology does go out to the school districts, but it comes with strings. The SDE does not dictate how the funds are spent, and some of the districts have used this money to hire technical support personnel.


Funding for the IDVA:

The statute governing charter schools exempts them from the same requirements as other public schools when hiring instructional staff, from flooring, and from the same index as the school district.

  • Regarding how we fairly and adequately provide funding for IDVA, there were several factors discussed. Funding is based on (1) size (# of support units); (2) who's hired; and (3) who's taught (K-6; high school; special education). At this time IDVA teaches only grades K-5 students, their staff is less experienced than other districts/charter schools, and their administrative staff are actually employees of K-12 company and receive no funding for benefits. Primarily because of these three factors, IDVA is being funded $3,200 per ADA versus charters or public schools who hire more qualified staff, have more special education students, and receive benefits for all of their employees.
  • After four years working with charter schools, everyone felt the foundation formula was working. IDVA is brand new and it is obvious that changes need to be made. Another problem is that when IDVA started, they had 700 students and within 6-8 weeks they had enrolled 1,000. Their ADA did not reflect this because it was based on data gathered the first Friday in November.
  • IDVA staff has a student ratio of 50 to 1, but they are not continuously in front of students. Funding adjustments need to be made.
  • Dual enrollment is allowed by law, and students may attend public schools and the IDVA.
  • This body has the authority to propose changes. There are no arbitrary decisions being made, but that's how the formula works.
Dr. Howard responded to findings in the report developed by the Office of Performance Review. In terms of administrative staff, several things occurred in recent years. Sixteen charter schools opened, two schools were de-consolidated, and districts have hired curriculum and information technology directors who are not always in instructional positions. She indicated that the SDE strives for efficiencies and the technology dollars have been put to good use; ITCL reports are required to show how dollars were spent. The IRI creates efficiencies over time. Because of the expectations to teach each student, and additional classified staff has been hired for support. When you think of the outcome, the SDE is targeting resources.
Representative Barraclough said his comments may have been harsh and direct, but he believes in spending efficiency, better students and teamwork among the State Board, the Department, the Legislature and the school boards. Dr. Howard said they have been a team in implementing standards and starting Idaho on the right pathway. The appropriations have allowed this to happen. The atmosphere across the state is enthusiastic; there is more to do, but they know what to do.

Dr. Howard addressed questions about the State Board looking at a software program for remediation and about teachers feeling the legislators do not like or appreciate them. Regarding the $3.9 million being spent for a remediation program, she said this is not likely in the near future because it would require 4-5 years of sustained funding. It is her hope that whatever is selected will be compatible with ISIMS. In response to the question about how teachers feel, she indicated there seems to be a mood across the country, and a lot of rhetoric against public schools. The "failing school" label tied to NCLB is very harsh. It is very difficult for teachers when they are working with a child they know will never advance. The newspapers have a lot to do with these feelings. Her personal opinion is that we need to say things very clearly.

RS13634 Representative Andersen presented RS13634 to the committee. This RS would allow education employees to use accrued sick leave to offset workers' compensation pay in order to bring the employee to his or her regular salary level. State employees already have this option, and the Attorney General's office said this change is needed.
MOTION: Representative Nielsen made a motion to introduce RS 13634. The motion carried by voice vote.
RS13563 Representative Bolz presented RS 13563 to the committee. The purpose of this RS is to allow school districts who contract school bus transportation services the opportunity, on a one-time basis, to renew the transportation contract with the current contractor for up to five years. Basically, this would address inequities because of depreciation issues.
MOTION: Representative Cannon made a motion to introduce RS 13563. The motion carried by voice vote.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 11:25 A.M.




DATE: February 3, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Vice Chairman Lake called the meeting to order at 9:07 A.M. and turned the gavel over to Representative Jones while he presented legislation in the State Affairs Committee.
MINUTES: Minutes from January 27, 28 (2 sets), 29 and 30, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Cannon made a motion to accept the minutes for January 27 - January 30 as printed. The motion carried by voice vote.
Mr. Brent Reinke, Director, Idaho Department of Juvenile Corrections (IDJC), provided an overview of what Idaho's program looks like. The IDJC provides services to adjudicated youth committed to its custody. Their mission is to "prevent and reduce juvenile crime in partnership with communities". The Idaho population of 10-17 year olds now stands at 170,936. There are 17 youth in out of state facilities. Mr. Reinke stated that 82.6% of Idaho's youth never get arrested. The facility population was broken down by percentages.

90.9% male and 9.1% female

93.9% are white, 4.2% American Indian, 1.6% black, and 0.32% Asian.

Ethnicity figures are 79% non-Hispanic and 21% Hispanic

Average age is now 15.7 where in 1999 it was 16.4

Crime level is 51.4% felony; 38.8% misdemeanor; 9.8% probation violation

Typically the youth will spend about 16.4 months in custody and may be placed in a least 2 different facilities. There most serious crime is generally a felony property crime. State facilities account for about 51% of the placements with contract facilities accounting for about 49%.

Mr. Reinke said the juvenile court system has been a positive tool. All 44 counties now have juvenile courts with 88 magistrates. There are 12 regional detention centers in Idaho. Their goal for those who are entering the juvenile system is that they never make it to the state level. He said out of 6,000 kids only 433 have ended up at the state level. They are trying to reach kids at an earlier age. Problem areas are adjudicated sex offenders (30.8%); conduct disorder/delinquency (82.4%); drug & alcohol (55.2%); and mental health (47.1%). He pointed out they had two suicides last year, and they are retooling on a daily basis to cope with this major issue.

A discussion followed and Mr. Reinke provided the following information.
  • In the juvenile system, there are no programs to deal with children before the 6th grade. Some schools may have programs in place.
  • The increase in sex offenders is a result of our society. If we look at what young children are exposed to or deal with, i.e., TV, lack of value systems in the home, lack of parental involvement, you begin to understand. IDJC has projects planned for 2004/2005 to try and address this.
  • Drug courts are working for juveniles, they are modeled after the state system, and parents are brought in and sometimes jailed. They are seeing positive results.
  • Sixteen year olds cannot decide they don't want to go to school while at IDJC; staff is with them 6 hours a day in a controlled environment.
  • Idaho is about 4% behind the national average on the number of female inmates, and the racial mix is not bad. They are working with the courts and looking at specific formats for Hispanics.
  • There are not many places in Idaho to house those with suicidal or psychotic behavior other than juvenile detention. Their staff has some training to handle these cases, but needs more. There are 3-5 kids on suicide watch on a daily basis in their facilities. At least 49% of the youth are on 2 medications a day. Counties are no longer taking indigent adults or youth.
  • Of the 17 youth being housed out of state, 1 is a female adjudicated sex offender, 14 are male adjudicated sex offenders, and 2 men are in need of mental health care.
Dr. Glenda Rohrbach, State Education Coordinator, Idaho Department of Juvenile Corrections, stated they are very proud of their education programs. They are accredited through the Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges. This allows students to return to local education agencies and receive credit for work completed within the IDJC programs.

Student performance (Attachment 1) is measured on the Idaho Standards Achievement Test (ISAT). Approximately 75 students were present for both the spring and fall testing and showed average gains per student of 4.0 for reading, 4.3 in math and 4.3 in language. In the fall of 2003 approximately 110 students took the ISAT, and over half had been in the program five months or less. The scores indicate that math is a big problem area. IDJC has difficulty in attracting highly qualified teachers, especially in math and science. IDJC must also comply with NCLB.

IDJC tries to discourage GED tests unless it is not practical for a student to get a high school diploma. They have had very high success rates on the GED with a 96% success rate in St. Anthony, 100% in Lewiston, and 93% in Nampa.

Dr. Rohrbach explained that 93 of the students in IDJC's three facilities are special education eligible, this represents 44% of the total population of 213. They have students with severe conditions such as brain injuries, heart transplants and severe mental health issues.

IDJC received federal funds from Title I and has a memorandum of understanding with the State Department of Education to provide funding. About 34% of the population is funded directly with IDJC funding.

Dr. Rohrbach mentioned she was excited about ISIMS because this would allow them to make decisions based on data. She explained they only had 10 computers with 140 students at St. Anthony to take the first ISAT exam. Since that time they have received an Albertson Foundation Grant which has allowed them to connect to T1 lines and install a network. She was asked if there are programs for parents to help them be better parents, and she said the public schools have some programs. One program that did make a difference was having community social workers in the public schools. When asked about the difference in the GED and a high school diploma, she said she feels a diploma is more highly regarded by the military and secondary education.
Vice Chairman Lake returned from State Affairs and assumed the chair.
Representative Jones briefed the committee on a legal opinion that was commissioned by the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL). Apparently several studies have been conducted, suggesting that the funds appropriated by the federal government are not adequate to cover the expenses the law imposes on state governments and local school districts. In other words, NCLB constitutes an unfunded mandate on state governments. Because several state legislatures have expressed interest in the wording of Section 9527(a) of the NCLB Act, NCSL requested a legal opinion be given. Although the words of Section 9527(a) are straightforward, what they mean and how they might be used to forestall the imposition of unfunded mandates is complicated.

The NCSL made it clear they have no position regarding possible legal challenges. Rather they have devoted their efforts to working with the administration to effect regulatory changes that would alleviate the financial and substantive concerns that legislators have expressed about the legislation (Attachment 2).

Representative Jones walked the committee through the various parts of the opinion. He mentioned that prior to NCLB, the Elementary Secondary Education Act required that Title I students have standards and assessments. NCLB now requires all students be tested and show adequate annual progress (AYP). Also NCLB indicates that states will lose all of their federal funding if they choose not to participate, not just their Title I funds. Representative Jones estimated that NCLB would result in about a 1% increase in federal funds.

The core of the brief is found on page 7, which provides Sec. 9527 in its entirety (Attachment 3). He explained that this one paragraph seems to say that NCLB is not a mandate, but all of the other sections deal with why it is a mandate. There are several states, including Virginia and New Hampshire, who have passed legislation to opt out of NCLB. Utah has also passed a resolution out of the House Education Committee to opt out. Utah would lose about $103 million per year in federal funding.

A discussion followed regarding Idaho's position, and the bottom line for any state is that if they opt out they will have to raise more funding locally. Whatever is taking place in other states, Idaho needs to ensure they do not cast students by the wayside. The hope is that all have signed on to the goals, and now we need to continue with the mechanism of how we get there. It was pointed out there are several other educational organizations who may have differing opinions and also provide information. One of these is the Education Commission of Governors and Legislators.

ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 10:36 A.M.




DATE: February 4, 2004
TIME: 8:30 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representative Bauer
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheets.
Senator Schroeder called the joint meeting of the House and Senate Education Committees to order at 8:40 with a quorum being present. He introduced Chairman Barraclough and Vice Chairman Lake from the House Education Committee and Vice Chairman Gannon from the Senate Education Committee. Chairman Barraclough mentioned that yesterday, two-thirds of the House Education Committee took portions of the ISAT, administered by three specialist from NWEA, at Boise High. He proudly announced that his mother was once Boise PTA President.
Ms. Shirley Block, Idaho PTA President, introduced herself as a mother of two, a registered nurse and a PTA member. The Idaho PTA was established in 1905 and now has 8,000 members, and there are six million members in the U.S. The advantages of being a PTA volunteer are getting to know the principals, teachers, and other parents with similar goals, hopes, and fears.

PTA advocates for children through legislation, supporting public education and acting as a liaison between schools and the community. PTA is also a "parent educator" that offers workshops on parenting skills, safety, discipline, nutrition, drug abuse and parental involvement. Last but not least, PTA is a "service" organization that provides and endorses volunteers in the schools and classrooms.

Ms. Block reviewed the Objects and Mission of the Idaho Congress of Parents and Teachers, Inc. (Attachment 1). She closed by quoting Anna B. Hayes, who fifty years ago was Idaho's PTA President and later become the National PTA President:

"For every child

the right to grow in stature, strong and free,

and grace to grow in fellowship

in his own right to be,

a noble, useful citizen

endowed with liberty"

Ms. Barb Bode, Engineer, presented the Idaho PTA Legislative Priorities for 2003-2004. She addressed issues and bill changes proposed by the PTA. Their priorities and their position statements are found in Attachment 2.

State Achievement Standards and Accountability: Idaho PTA supports the State Achievement Standards as educational goals for students, but they oppose the use of a standardized test as the sole criteria for measuring progress. The PTA is concerned about high stakes testing, and they believe multiple measures of student performance to be a more valid assessment.

Charter Schools: PTA supports charter schools, but also seeks legislation ensuring charter schools meet local health and safety standards, receive separately allocated funds so as not to divert limited funds from public education, carry a performance bond and be governed by the local school board in the district in which the charter school is located.

Education Funding: Idaho PTA supports Dr. Howard's proposed budget. Items missing in the Governor's budget were the 1% salary increase, technology, mentoring and ISAT intervention.

Property Tax Replacement Fund Cap: Idaho PTA opposes the continuance of the property tax replacement fund cap enacted in 2003, because they feel this may eventually result in a $4-5 million shortfall. The shortfall would require local levies and increase property taxes.

Safe School Facilities: Idaho PTA supports repealing all statues pertaining to facilities.

Second Hand Smoke and Tobacco Use: Idaho PTA supports S1120 dealing with abandoning smoking in public places. Second hand smoke is a major health issue.

  • The committee voiced concerns about the PTA supporting the repeal of the facilities laws without bringing with them recommendations for what other education programs would be cut or what other sources of funding could be used to fund facilities maintenance. Ms. Bode said they believe all of the lottery money should go towards facilities.
  • When asked if the Idaho PTA's views regarding charter schools, NCLB and ISAT are in line with the National PTA's views, Ms. Bode and Ms. Block stated that they are aligned.
  • In response to PTA's position on "pay for performance" Ms. Bode said she supports pay for performance rather than just "seat time", but we need to be careful when developing the evaluation criteria/factors.
  • Ms. Bode was asked if students can't meet the minimum requirements of the "exit" exam, not the "high stakes" test, how can they meet the other options you outlined on your position statement? She stated that the PTA is not against testing, but the methods used; a single multiple choice test. She was reminded that the only "high stakes" are students who can't read and write. She was asked is this not a reasonable approach to test students at 10th grade, giving several opportunities to take the test, and allowing them to bank portions passed? She said she fears if students pass ISAT in the 10th grade they will not apply themselves their last two years. Would prefer the test be given the last semester of student's senior year? She answered "no".
  • Would PTA support a mandatory kindergarten, because kindergarten teachers say their biggest concern is the children not there? She said they would.
  • A general comment was made about dollars spent and test scores not improving. It was pointed out by another committee member that when discussing test scores, we must identify which tests we are talking about and look at the way the test was measured; national norm test vs. state.


Throughout the presentation the message about the extreme importance of parental involvement came through loud and clear. Representative Block applauded the members for their work, and thanked them for getting the word out about parental involvement. Senator Schroeder thanked Ms. Bode and Ms. Block and stressed that parental involvement does determine the success of children.

Mr. Craig Olson, J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Foundation, presented the members with an update on the Idaho Student Information Management System (ISIMS). He introduced the other members of the ISIMS team from the Albertson Foundation: Wayne Rush, Nissa Crawford, Roger Widner, Bob Haley, and Gale Hogan. Also introduced was Rich Mincer, State Department of Education.

Mr. Olson described the makeup of the partnership to make ISIMS a reality: the Governor, the Legislature, the State Board of Education, the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, all educators, all stakeholders and the J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Foundation. He provided a brief background of the project from its beginning with the passage of HB 367 on April 15, 2003 to the present, outlining the progress made, the responsibilities of the stakeholders, the cost of the project and the risks involved (Attachment 3).

ISIMS Mission ... "To equip the Idaho educational system stakeholders with the most efficient and effective student information management and reporting system. The project goals are to (1) indirectly improve student achievement; (2) enhance data driven decisions; and (3) provide information on impact of programs. The benefits to students and parents, to teachers, to school districts, state educational agencies, and to the Governor and the Legislature are provided in detail (Attachment 3).

Mr. Olson described the system components, software packages chosen for user access, the hardware and platform. He also provided a timeline of where they hope to be by September 2006 when the system is targeted to be turned over to the State Department of Education. He emphasized that the software chosen is proven software and is being used in several other states. When discussing the costs for the system, he pointed out that the $35 million grant does not address adequate band with at the districts nor does it provide for updated computers running Windows 2000 (they no longer feel computers running Windows 98 will suffice).

  • A discussion followed. A committee member brought up the fact that in the business world planning for equipment would be done through a strategic plan, and doesn't it make sense to use a strategic plan rather than "hit and miss". Mr Olson indicated that the state will need to plan for the number of computers needed in a given school, connectivity (routers), replacement cycle, and support.
  • Has the ISIMS team determined the cost of band-width and computers? Mr. Olson said they are not planning to do this. They have a contractor who will look at existing equipment to determine if it can carry the data. It was suggested that the team needs to come out and say what's needed and provide a standard configuration so school districts can work together and combine bids. However, the team needs to find an entity in the SDE to provide that service. There is some infrastructure in place.
  • Roughly $10 million is estimated for training. The team is hoping to have district personnel do some of the training.
  • The ISIMS team has negotiated and purchased software licenses. The state will have to pay for maintenance agreements to keep the software current and allow for support.
  • What will the effect be on ISIMS if technology is not fully funded this year? This could hinder the addition of computers and the upgrades to connectivity, and may also put the ISAT at risk.
  • Does the system design vary for large versus small schools? No, it is very similar. Policies and procedures may be different (full time person versus secretary/superintendent entering data). Mr. Wayne Rush indicated the system is very robust and will allow schools to pick the right level. The small schools seem most excited about the system because they need the tools.
  • Will there be cost savings? The team has not tried to get their arms around savings, but feel Idaho may qualify for additional federal funding because of the system.
  • Have you looked at the makeup of the IDVA and how they will tie in? They will fit in nicely because there will only be one instance of student data available throughout the state so all of the schools can connect, even private schools, if a cost reimbursement is worked out.
  • What about the implications for parents and students who don't have computers and are not computer literate? The team is not addressing this, but the schools might want to have a computer set up and personnel to assist parents to access the data.
  • Will the system allow teachers to do a better job and will it save time? Mr. Rush said they believe it will save time in the long run because teachers can develop lesson plans and then share them. There will be websites linked to the standards and test banks of questions. He believes it will facilitate accountability, system efficiency and student growth/quality.
Mr. Rich Mincer, State Department of Education, informed the committees that he communicates with all 50 states on a regular basis, and all of them are looking at a statewide system. Idaho will be the first to implement a system that integrates curriculum and a student management system into one. British Columbia is looking at the Idaho model.
ADJOURN: Senator Schroeder adjourned the meeting at 11:00 A.M.




DATE: February 5, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please see the committee sign-in sheets.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:04 A.M. with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: The minutes of February 2, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Bradford made a motion to approve the minutes as printed. The motion carried by voice vote.
Docket Nos.

08-0202-0301

08-0202-0302

08-0202-0303

08-0202-0304

30-0101-0301

47-0101-0301

Representative Trail presented the findings of the rules review subcommittee on the following agency rules: Docket Nos. 08-0202-0301, 08-0202-0302 (fee rule), 08-0202-0303, 08-0202-0304, 30-0101-0301, and 47-0101-0301. Representative Trail reported that the subcommittee is recommending to the full committee that all of the rules identified be adopted as printed.
MOTION: Representative Trail made a motion that the committee accept the subcommittee report and recommendations. The motion carried by voice vote.
Docket No.

08-0203-0301

Representative Lake reported on the rules review subcommittee findings on Docket No. 08-0203-0301. There has been a great deal of discussion on this rule, both in the subcommittee as well as in the joint meeting of the House and Senate. After a lengthy debate, the subcommittee voted to adopt the rule, with the exceptions of Sections 105 and 107, the graduation requirements. Representative Lake suggested that the subcommittee members had the opportunity to further research this rule and also take the ISAT exam themselves since they voted in the subcommittee.
MOTION: Representative Andersen made a motion to adopt Docket No. 08-0203-0301, with the exceptions of Sections 105 and 107, as recommended by the subcommittee.
SUBSTITUTE

MOTION:

Representative Eberle made a substitute motion to adopt Docket No. 08-0203-0301 along with Docket Nos. 08-0202-0301, 08-0202-0302 (fee rule), 08-0202-0303, 08-0202-0304, 30-0101-0301, and 47-0101-0301.
Representative Jones debated in favor of the original motion and against the substitute motion. The State Board has paid attention to the concerns brought forth by the subcommittee and this committee, and the Board can make changes to the rule at their April meeting. He reminded those present that this is a rule, not a statute. The Nez Perce Tribe has voiced their concerns about the reliability and validity of the ISAT. The Governor is quoted in the newspaper as saying that parents will have the right to appeal, but as he interprets this rule, only LEP and IEP students can appeal, and the only year they can substitute an alternate means of proficiency is in the 10th grade. He emphasized he supports the original motion because he objects to what the rule says, not because of public opinion.
Chairman Barraclough stated he was disappointed when he heard the subcommittee had voted to exclude Sections 105 and 107 because of the extensive efforts the state has gone through to require accountability. After taking the ISAT, he feels it is a fair, professionally written test. There is room to evaluate it, and time to improve it. We need to look at what measurement needed to assure students can cope with life, rather than condemn them to a life of under performance.
Representative Andersen spoke in opposition of the substitute motion and for the original motion. He provided a scenario of a student who didn't pass one section of the ISAT and therefore did not receive his diploma. The student went to all the universities in Idaho and found they have multiple requirements for admissions, i.e. GPA, SAT scores, interviews. Representative Andersen searched the Internet to see what companies in Idaho require on job applications and found many required strong communication skills (both written and verbal), multi-tasking, problem solving and computer literacy. According to his research of Idaho test scores from 1997, student performance is improving. He said it is inappropriate to base graduation on one test score.
Representative Cannon spoke in support of the substitute motion, saying he is in favor of the ISAT being used as an exiting test. By taking the ISAT, he gained respect for the ISAT, not fear. If students don't pass the first time it is not the end of the world because they have a good support group of teachers and parents and can try again. Taking the ISAT provides a start for the rest of their lives and helps them deal with pressures.
Representative Lake debated in favor of the substitute motion, saying he feels the rules provide students with every opportunity of passing the ISAT, if they are willing to apply themselves. This requirement gives value to the diploma. He feels if more time is needed, the Board will make that adjustment.
Representative Kulczyk spoke in favor of the substitute motion. A builder spends a certain amount of time on the building plans and then starts building/implementing the plans. He agrees if there are problems with the rule we can bring it back and make adjustments until it's right. He commends the Board and feels we need to get going.
Representative Boe stated she supports the action of the subcommittee. She said the ISAT is a better test than what she thought. One reason for not linking the ISAT to the graduation requirements is possible lawsuits. She mentioned the Department of Education and the State Board are both working on external reviews, and it is best to wait until it is certified before linking it to the graduation requirements.
Representative Block spoke in support of the substitute motion, saying she supports the ISAT and its use as a graduation exam. In the subcommittee, she had concerns about the required dates and about validity and reliability. She has been informed there will be a technical review team, and she has confidence they will make the necessary adjustments. Also the legislature will have oversight. She believes that accountability motivates people - teachers, parents and students.
Representative Rydalch debated in favor of the substitute motion. If we don't move ahead, we are short changing teachers. This is one tool of many teachers will use, and she has never known a teacher who uses only one means to evaluate a student. Businesses do orientation training, but should not have to retrain employees on the basics. It is up to the legislature to follow through with additional changes. Legal ramifications are dealt with every day.
Representative Bayer spoke in favor of the substitute motion, asking to go on record for his strong support for the rule as a whole prior to the subcommittee recommendation. He looked at all of the perspectives and the ISAT, equally, objectively, and without compromise. His position was not changed, and he has not been strong armed by any means, and he challenges any future attempts.
Representative Sayler spoke in support of the original motion. The opposing views of the experts and their disagreements concern him. He feels the ISAT actually narrows the approach to learning, and he is concerned about the classification accuracy of 90% which means 1 out of 10 students may not be classified correctly. Waiting another year is good policy because the costs of remediation have not been determined. Studies have shown that students with disabilities are at greater risk and have a 50% drop out rate. The consequences are great for the students.
Representative Garrett spoke in support of the substitute motion. She shared a personal story about her niece who went through school without being diagnosed with dyslexia and ended up dropping out and living on the street for 10 years. She did eventually get her diploma, but still has a disability. Representative Garrett said she is excited about education in Idaho and not leaving behind students.
Representative Naccarato spoke in opposition to the substitute motion and for the original motion. He has received tons of information from constituents, and even a letter from the Gentleman on the second floor. His constituents can accept accountability and the standards, but can't accept the ISAT. He said his goal was and is to keep Idaho out of court.
Representative Bauer spoke in favor of the substitute motion, explaining that he voted in the subcommittee to delete Sections 105 and 107. He said as he took the ISAT he was nervous but as he proceeded, he became more comfortable. He knew he was close on most of the questions, but confident he could do this. He has talked with students in his district and some thought the test was easy and others thought it was hard. He said he is confident that the children of Idaho can come up to the task of learning.
Representative Bradford spoke in support of the substitute motion. He suggested that any test usually brings some fear. He stated he didn't receive a lot of education growing up, but in the service he worked in electronics and learned a comfort level. Idaho has great teachers, and we need to show them we have confidence in them. An email he received from a teacher said they fear their jobs; they need reassuring. This is a time of change, and the ISAT is a step in the right direction, even though it is not perfect.
Chairman Barraclough asked Dr. Randy Thompson to clarify the intent of Section 105. Dr. Thompson said the intent was to allow one of the following and the word "or" may be causing the confusion. The intent is not to allow students to appeal before their senior year, but the appeal process is certainly not limited just to LEP or IEP students.
Representative Trail debated in support of the original motion, saying he didn't receive a letter from the gentleman on the second floor. He stated he has concerns about the 10% in terms of reliability. The Nez Perce and other members of the Latino and Tribal Caucus have urged that we not implement this as a graduation requirement until the Board makes sure the equity is there.
Representative Eberle spoke is favor of the substitute motion. Nine years ago this state decided we would no longer give a diploma to students who did not deserve it. ISAT was not designed to test higher functions. He feels the validity has been examined. The test is not designed to punish. If you don't hold students accountable, it's like having a "car without a motor".
Representative Nielsen noted he has "kept his powder dry" throughout this discussion. He said he has been actively involved in education with his children and 23 grandchildren. He applauds teachers, and feels their number one rule is that they care about students. Producing students who must take a lot of remedial courses in colleges costs much more in the long run. He called their attention to Section 107 where it outlines the minimum graduation requirements. We need to do what's best for the kids and this rule can be modified if needed.
VOTE ON THE SUBSTITUTE MOTION: Chairman Barraclough called for a vote on the substitute motion, and Representative Rydalch requested a roll call vote. A roll call vote was taken, and the substitute motion to adopt all of the agency rules passed by a 12 to 6 vote. Chairman Barraclough and Representatives Lake, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer voted "Aye" and Representatives Jones, Trail, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato and Sayler voted "Nay".
Representative Jones emphasized what a successful process this has been. He said the first thing he learned when coming here was to learn to count, and he knew what the results would be today. The State Board has now heard all of the concerns and will make the necessary changes. This is the process, and he commended all of the members for their views. This has been a good discussion. This is a rule, not a statute.

Chairman Barraclough thanked Representative Jones for his remarks and said this is why the NCSL holds him in such high esteem. Representative Andersen thanked the chairman for allowing the full debate.

ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, Chairman Barraclough adjourned the meeting at 10:12 A.M.




DATE: February 9, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheets.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:04 A.M. with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: The minutes of February 3, 4 and 5, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Cannon made a motion to accept the February 3, 4, and 5, 2004 minutes as printed. The motion carried by voice vote.
RS13924 Representative Meyer presented RS13924 to the committee. This legislation was brought to him by a trustee from Northern Idaho Community College. The legislation will amend Section 33-2115, Idaho Code, to revise descriptive language, to make a grammatical change and to provide that the boards of trustees of community college districts shall cooperate with county commissioners, mayors, city councils and school district boards of trustees. Representative Meyer said there is a lot of coordination that goes on right now, but if there is a change in administration, there could be a change in operations.
MOTION: Representative Rydalch made a motion to introduce RS13924. Representative Meyer was asked what situation(s) brought about the need for this legislation, and he mentioned (1) city sports teams use the college grounds and (2) a missionary training program at NIC had to be dropped because of funding and is now being operated privately. A question was asked about the use of "shall cooperate" and what the consequences are if they do not. It was explained that the required cooperation is currently spelled out in the statute for cities, and he feels it should work both ways.

A vote was called for, and the motion to introduce RS13924 carried by voice vote. Representative Kulczyk wished to be recorded as voting "nay".

RS13553C1 Representative Garrett presented RS13553C1 to the committee. This legislation adds Section 33-520, Idaho Code, to provide that the board of trustees of each school district shall adopt a policy governing medical inhalers and self-administration of medication. Nearly 40,000 Idaho children have asthma; about two children in a classroom of 30 (Attachment 1). When physicians prescribe inhalers, they instruct patients to carry them at all times. Asthma attacks can happen anytime or anywhere so it is important for students to have immediate access to their inhalers. By providing unrestricted access, children are empowered to manage their asthma. This legislation was drafted in cooperation with the Idaho School Boards Association, and the legislation will bring Idaho in line with 23 other states.

When asked what the downside of this might be, Representative Garrett explained that children with asthma are educated about the use of their medication, and there are no side effects if another child should get access to the inhaler.

MOTION: Representative Boe made a motion to introduce RS13553C1. When asked about students being allowed to carry and use other medications, Representative Garrett said asthma is life-threatening, and students don't always have time to get to the nurse's office for medication. We need to look at this on a case-by-case basis.

A vote was called for, and the motion to introduce RS13553C1 carried by voice vote.

Mr. Jason Hancock, Joint Finance and Appropriations Committee, provided the committee with a Revised Comparison of Public School Budget Proposals (Attachment 2). He pointed out the increases in items A-7 and A-9, stating that salary-based apportionment is driven by increased support units, in part due to the de-consolidation effect of charter schools. State paid employee benefits reflect an increase in what the states pays for employee health benefits and for the new costs associated with PERSI.

The $5 million decrease in item B-1, technology grants, in the Governor's budget coincides with the fact that the Governor did not include replacement equipment funding in any of the agency budgets, except one. Mr. Hancock didn't know exactly how the technology grants are allocated, but $300,000 of the $3.4 million is distributed for the LILI program and $173,000 goes to the State Department of Education to fund the expenses of the ICTL. He stressed that information technology (IT) staff should be funded from the ongoing $3.4 million, and the fact that the $5 million one-time funding is being cut should not mean a decrease in IT staff.

Regarding federal funds being garnered to offset this decrease, it was explained that these are not new funds, and currently half of the federal funds are distributed to the school districts using a formula and half of the funds are provided through grants that the school districts apply for. Mr. Hancock suggested that perhaps the state needs to sharpen its focus for the grant funds and make funding for ISIMS equipment a high priority. It is difficult to determine what adequate equipment really is for ISIMS, and there are many questions surrounding this. Kellogg is to be a pilot site for ISIMS, and they do not have adequate equipment. It is not clear if the equipment for the pilot sites will be purchased by the Albertson Foundation. Mr. Hancock stated that in 2006 the state, by law, will be required to fund the equipment and maintenance for about $6-8 million of on-going funding. It was suggested that this issue could possibly be addressed by the audit committee. When asked about the cost for upgrading the band width at each site, Mr. Hancock clarified that one-time funding could be used for the system infrastructure, but additional costs of maintaining the system will need to be addressed by base funding.

It was pointed out that item B-11 is not discretionary money if it is earmarked for salaries and benefits. The House Education Scenario column differs slightly from the Governor's request in that it places the savings in transportation costs and the discretionary funds into Item B-12, unallocated funds for $13,176,200 million. Mr. Hancock then provided the committee with possible options for the unallocated funds (Attachment 2).

When asked what would happen to the $13,176,200 million if the Governor's economic projections turn out to be too high, it was pointed out there aren't many other places to look for funds. Most of the public school budget is tied to statutory requirements. A comment was made that given this scenario, the savings from transportation costs will go back into education programs. Mr. Tim Hill, State Department of Education, indicated that the savings in transportation are a result of all stakeholders combining their efforts.

Mr. Ross Borden, Joint Finance and Appropriations Committee, presented the Higher Education Budget Summary to the committee. All of the materials for setting budgets can be viewed in the Legislative Budget Summary given to them on a CD. Benchmarks from 2001 were provided that focus on the general funds and show the percentage of increases or decreases. Very few federal dollars come to the colleges and universities in the way of appropriated funds, but through student loans and grants.

The Governor followed the same philosophy for higher education as he did with all agencies by not recommending new enhancements. The Governor did recommend a 2% increase in CEC to allow for merit pay increases. The 2% increase for CEC does not include the surplus eliminator.

Mr. Borden commented on each of the appropriations pointing out some of the shortfalls (Attachment 3).

Agricultural Research & Extension Service: The Governor did not recommend the requested $122,000 fund shift for loss of federal funds, but did recommend the personnel cost rollups and the 2% CEC increase.

Colleges and Universities (BSU, ISU, UI, LCSC) and Community Colleges (NIC and CSI): Again the Governor did not recommend the requested fund shift, the inflationary increases or the enrollment workload adjustment (these are the cost of educating students over and above the new student fee increases). New occupancy costs for the new CSI and NIC buildings were not recommended by the Governor. Because of the drop in endowment funds, the colleges and universities would ideally like these decreases covered by general funds. No equity funding has been included in this budget.

A question was asked about who is the requestor for higher education budgets, and Mr. Borden explained that all of the higher education budget requests are submitted to the Office of the State Board of Education (OSBE) and then combined/refined and submitted to the Governor. When asked what changes the OSBE made, it was indicated they did not make many modifications. A question arose about the funding percentage differences between community colleges and universities, and it was explained that 4-year schools are more dependent on general funds and have more occupancy costs.

Office of the State Board of Education: The general fund increase for OSBE can be attributed to their assessment and accountability responsibilities. Until last year, OSBE delegated to the State Department of Education through rule the responsibility for managing federal funds. Last session a rule was adopted that now requires federal funds to flow through the OSBE to the Department and then to the school districts.

Health Education Programs: FY 2005 is the 4th and final year to fund the additional medical seats. This was the only agency not subject to cuts.

Professional-Technical Education: Funding recommendation was consistent with all other agencies. These programs are experiencing a large growth, but the governor did not recommend funding for the secondary workload adjustment.

Special Programs: The Governor did recommend funding for the Promise Scholarships.

Mr. Borden stated that higher education has had impressive growth, and the lean recommendations presents a difficult situation. He reminded the committee that he is available if they have additional questions.

ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 10:45 A.M.




DATE: February 10, 2004
TIME: 8:30 A.M.
PLACE: Gold Room
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representative Jones
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheets.
Chairman Barraclough called the joint meeting to order at 8:36 A.M. with a quorum being present. He welcomed the school board trustees, recognizing the difficulty of their elected positions and commending them for the roles they play in education. Senator Schroeder welcomed everyone, saying you all know what needs to be done in your community.
Ms. Janet Orndorff, Idaho School Board Association (ISBA) President, introduced Wande Quinn, President Elect, Coeur d'Alene and Ernest Jensen, Vice President, Idaho Falls. Members from the Executive Board were also introduced. Ms. Orndorff stated that the ISBA chose to report on the Idaho Reading Initiative (IRI) this year. Prior to 1999, a study committee reviewed the latest research to determine what could be done to improve reading scores in Idaho. Legislation, creating the IRI, was passed in 1999 that (1) provided reading intervention at the lowest level; (2) provided funding for the Idaho Comprehensive Literacy Course for K-8 teachers; and (3) and provided diagnostic information for teachers. In 2001 legislation was introduced to address the accountability segment and in 2002 changes were made so calculations were made for students who were present 90% of the school year and allowed an additional year for schools to meet the requirements. The ISBA was a stakeholder in drafting the legislation and in the changes made to the legislation.
Ms. Wande Quinn, ISBA President Elect and Trustee, Coeur d'Alene School Board, thanked the committees for the time they devoted last month to the various educational issues. Representatives from three districts were asked to share (1) what they attribute to their improvement in scores; (2) lessons learned; and (3) their concerns. Dr. Cliff Green, ISBA Executive Director, prepared a table showing the IRI data for Spring 2001-2003 (Attachment 1). The data is representative of 30 school district (10 large districts, 10 small districts and 10 medium size districts) out of the 114. ISBA believes that there are aspects of the IRI process that provide guidance in the implementation of NCLB and ISAT. Specifically, the IRI set realistic goals and targets for the general population and the special needs population. Funding was provided for staff development, student intervention, and provided a valid and reliable assessment process. Educators have confidence in the IRI, and ISBA would like to see the same confidence developed in the ISAT as a measuring and diagnostic tool.
Ms. Deb Foster, Trustee, South Lemhi School District (Leadore and Tendoy) represented one of the small districts with an average population of about 120 students. About 64% of their students fall at or below the poverty level. Their student teacher ratio is low, but every teacher teaches more than one grade level. Their IRI scores have been outstanding the past four years. When Sue Smith became principal in 2000 it became apparent to her that there were high school students with high GPAs who were scoring very low on the ACT, and the direct writing and direct math assessments.

An extended reading program was implemented for 2nd through 6th grade, and students were placed on an individualized reading plans. In addition to the progressive classroom program, all students read out loud to a trained reading instructor 15 minutes each day. The 2003 reading scores for South Lemhi show that 92% of their students are reading at grade level at this time. In order to achieve this goal it was necessary to have (1) the school board put reading as a primary focus in elementary classrooms; (2) small class sizes in K-3 with uninterrupted teaching blocks; (3) excellent classroom teachers; (4) classified staff trained as reading instructors; (5) an instructional leader who understands the reading process and is able to articulate that process to others; and (6) teacher training.

Ms. Sue Smith, Principal, South Lemhi Schools, thanked the Chairman for their involvement in the education process. She stated that as an administrator she feels the standards, ISAT testing, IRI testing and other indicators set up by the State Department of Education and the State Board of Education are all valuable tools. We have to know where we are going and the standards do that. The ISAT is a helpful measure to assure students are mastering goals, and the ISAT correlates with other testing instruments used by the South Lemhi schools. Ms. Smith said she believes in NCLB, and that every child has the right to quality education that allows them to work to their maximum potential. However, every child cannot be proficient (5-10% of the population does not have the cognitive ability to achieve this goal), but tests scores can be raised with excellent remediation. It is not fair to the child to make them feel like a failure. Schools should be held accountable that every child makes progress, but they cannot make every child proficient.

She stressed that learning how to read is difficult and if children have not learned to read by the end of the 3rd grade, they probably never will. About 10% of our population struggles in the academic world, mostly for cognitive reasons. There are socially/emotionally burdened children in school and these children need immediate identification. Attachment 2 provides a list of behaviors of students who are at risk for learning how to read.

Many teachers have not been prepared to teach reading, and learning how to teach reading is a hands on skill that needs to have quality supervision. Idaho is doing a good job in preparing Elementary Administrators to run the business of the school. However, they do not receive adequate preparation to be the instructional leaders. More training is needed in child psychology, identifying special needs children, counseling, maturation process, and a firm grip on the sequence of learning K-8th grade.

To achieve 90% reading scores on the IRI test, principals need to be instructional leaders and be able to train their personnel in the structured reading process. Excellent teachers that are well versed in the reading process have the ability to identify at risk children and set these children up for immediate success. Attachment 2 outlines the successful reading program at Leadore and Tendoy schools.

Ms. Wendy Horman, Trustee, Idaho Falls, represented one of the 10 large schools. Her district's success is categorized into comments from the district level, the school building level, and parent perspective. The number one comment from the district was that teachers bought into the test as an assessment and accountability piece. The IRI (1) created a real focus on reading proficiency; (2) created an indicator or a data resource; (3) established uniform objectives; and (4) provided for staff development and a comprehensive literacy certification requirement.

At the school building level the principals and teachers pointed out a combination of research-based practices/fundamental tools used to help students succeed on the IRI. These were the Star Early Literacy Test, AIMSweb Fluency Test, Waterford Early Literacy Program, Saxon Phonics Program, remediation/intervention programs, Albertson Foundation's TOBI grant, and the IRI Instructional Support Guide.

From a parent perspective factors identified were focus, effective teachers, improvement of resources used in teaching, and communication of testing results. Ms. Horman said she is very appreciative of the positive changes she has seen over the past 11 years.

As policy makers it is hard to know how our great ideas or initiatives will trickle down, but the intent of the IRI did not get lost in the translation. Lessons learned from implementation of the IRI is that accountability isn't just for teachers, administrators and school boards, it's for students as well. There is a fine line between putting too much pressure on kids and not enough. She suggested we need to continue what works and discontinue what's not working.

Mr. Neil Thompson, Trustee, McCall Donnelly, said he became a trustee because he could see the needs of the children and so far he has had no bad experiences. He said in 1998, McCall Donnelly was targeted as a school the Albertson Foundation looked at for a high achieving school, but it wasn't until 2001 that they received a grant. They put together a curriculum team and gathered research data from across the country on curriculum based instruction. They put together their own curriculum based instruction manual and handed it out at the beginning of this year. The principal and the curriculum coordinator shared their excitement because a kindergarten teacher in McCall who put the curriculum in place saw student scores raised by 40%. Results from other teachers putting the curriculum to work are just starting to happen. The school board has set the bar at 90%. They want to see well equipped students, and he thanked them for their hard work and thanked the Albertson Foundation for making this possible.
Mr. Ernest Jensen, ISBA Vice President, presented ISBA's five recommendations based on lessons learned from the IRI that can be applied to the ISAT and NCLB: (1) involve all stakeholders, (2) academic intervention, (3) instructional leadership and professional development, (4) fund technology, and (5) continue to communicate with Congress and the U.S. Department of Education concerning NCLB (Attachment 3). The ISBA 2004 Legislative Priority Resolutions are provided in Attachment 4.
A discussion followed and the presenters were commended on their team efforts to raise the IRI scores. It was stressed that involving stakeholders up front was one of the keys to the IRI's success. Early childhood intervention, especially for special needs children, has made a big difference even though 100% achievement may not be possible. Special needs children are graduating and are prepared. Funding, thoughtfulness and resources will be the keys to ISAT's success. The difference in the IRI and ISAT is the fact that ISAT comes with sanctions.
ADJOURN: The joint meeting of the House and Senate Education Committees was adjourned at 10:15 A.M.




DATE: February 10, 2004
TIME: 10:35 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: None
Chairman Barraclough convened the full committee for a short meeting at 10:35 A.M. to gather their input and recommendations for his presentation to JFAC on Wednesday, February 11 at 8:00 A.M.
Funding for Technology: This was one of the top priorities for most of the members. Some thoughts and concerns shared were (1) one source indicated that 57,000 computers in the state may not be adequate to run Windows 2000; (2) computers were recently purchased by a district that run Windows 98 and may not be compatible with ISIMS; (3) accounting of equipment/audit at each district and a comprehensive plan are needed to meet the 2006 ISIMS implementation; and (4) the ICTL should be involved in overseeing the technology effort since money is allocated for this committee.

Remediation: Funding remediation was another top priority because the success of ISAT hinges on remediation. Teachers and resources are needed to ensure remediation is accomplished. It was suggested that funds need to be moved from the Office of the State Board to the State Department of Education for remediation. Also mentioned was the fact that remediation can be funded through NCLB.

Salary Based Apportionment: It was suggested that the Superintendent's $8 million recommendation be used for Salary Based Apportionment which would leave about $2 million (based on the Governor's recommendation) to be targeted for technology. There was a concern voiced that the Governor's $10 million recommendation for discretionary funds not be considered unallocated funds.

Other Input Received: Several members brought forth input including (1) be cautious this year and provide as much discretionary funding as possible; (2) support a level budget; (3) examine how to fund charter schools; (4) fund the mandated $25,000 beginning salary and teacher mentoring; (5) do not put school districts in a position that they have to request property tax increases.

ADJOURN: Meeting was adjourned at 11:00 A.M.




DATE: February 11, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representative Jones
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:06 A.M. with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: The minutes of February 9, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Andersen made a motion to accept the minutes as printed. The motion carried.
Chairman Barraclough reported that in his presentation to JFAC this morning he concentrated on the issues brought to him from the committee rather than exact numbers. He emphasized this was not his report, but the committee's report.
INTRODUCTION: Mr. Rakesh Mohan, Director, Office of Performance Evaluations, spoke about how his office works with the Joint Legislative Oversight Committee (JLOC). JLOC is a bi-partisan committee of eight with equal number of Senators and Representatives. The Office of Performance Evaluations gets general direction from JLOC. Once a project is approved, JLOC takes a back seat. JLOC sees the final report and the conclusions at a public meeting. Generally, the stakeholders know more about the project, and this is by design to maintain objectivity and independence.

Mr. Mohan explained that last year Leadership was interested in looking at public transportation and rather than do a quick report on just three districts, it was decided to do a more comprehensive audit using 14 districts based on size and comparability to other districts. Throughout this process, the State Department of Education (SDE), the Office the State Board of Education (OSBE), districts and the other stakeholders were kept apprised throughout the study.

PRESENTATION: Mr. Paul Headlee, Performance Evaluator, Office of Performance Evaluations, presented the findings and recommendations from the Fiscal Accountability of Pupil Transportation Report. A copy of the full report is available online at www.state.id.us/ope or a hard copy may be requested from the Office of Performance Evaluation. Ms. A.J. Burns, Senior Evaluator, assisted with the slide presentation.

It was found that between 1992 and 2002 transportation costs increased more than other indicators, i.e. daily ridership, number of buses, and miles driven. Also pupil transportation costs were higher than most state agency budgets. Fourteen districts, representing 43% of all districts, were chosen for this study.

Regarding state oversight, it was found that the SDE's role is unclear. The SDE is required in statute to do spot (bus) inspections, bus driver training, and determine reimbursable costs. The requirements are unclear, and the Department provides limited oversight.

Findings pertaining to district administration of transportation services revealed how district decisions impact state costs, and that more efforts are needed to improve fiscal accountability. One example was that districts seldom pursue Medicaid reimbursements and it is recommended they work with the Department of Health and Welfare to do so. It was also noted that Medicaid reimbursements are not always reported. Several districts have taken cost-saving measures by consolidating and reducing bus routes, reducing non-bus driver staff, reducing or limiting field and activity trips, maximizing use of full-time drivers and reducing number of drivers who receive benefits.

Twenty-two districts contract their bus services, and it was recommended that they be required to use a model contract, and that bid review guidelines be developed by the Department. Districts do not have bus replacement plans, and it was recommended that the Department should develop a model bus replacement plan based on mileage, age and use criteria.

The funding cap put in place last session does control costs because it limits reimbursements to 110% of statewide average cost/mile or cost/student (rider). Only those districts above both averages are capped, and the cap decreases in FY06 and FY07. Districts can apply for a waiver or loan. It is recommended that the Department of Education should establish, in rule, a method that increases and standardizes the days/ways districts count riders.

Mr. Headlee demonstrated how the online Office of Performance Evaluations funding cap model can be used to review and calculate district funding deductions and savings to the state, view funding at different cap percentages, review how close a district is to the cap, and view different scenarios of cost increases or decreases. Feedback on this model has been positive.

The Office of Performance Evaluations concluded that (1) there has been a limited focus on economical transportation, and district decisions cost dollars; (2) the Department's oversight role is unclear; (3) if the OSBE intends for more oversight, current staffing is inadequate and needs to be addressed; (4) with the funding cap in place, accuracy of data is more important than ever; and (5) cap will save the state money.

In response to committee questions and concerns, Mr. Headlee clarified that (1) districts generally apply the "safety busing" requirements, but districts are not counting students in the same manner; (2) increasing ridership is not valid or ethical and ridership should show sustained increases; (3) two approaches were recommended for standardizing ridership counts; (4) extending bus contracts could result in savings to districts, but there is no guarantee; and (5) there is a waiver process in place to allow districts with unusual circumstances to obtain a waiver to the funding cap.

PRESENTATION: Mr. Chris Shoop and Mr. Ned Parrish, Performance Evaluators, Office of Performance Evaluations and Audits, presented the findings from the School District Administration and Oversight Report. A copy of the full report is available online at www.state.id.us/ope or a hard copy may be requested from the Office of Performance Evaluation. Mr. Shoop reported that school districts received more than $1.6 billion in FY 2002 and over $150 million was received in reported administration costs. Eleven districts were visited and areas looked at were administrative staffing and salary levels, oversight and fiscal accountability, purchasing and contracting and district health insurance. Positions included in the administrative staffing were district administration, school administration, district/business support, school support and other supervisory positions.

Charts depicting statewide staffing growth and staffing growth by position category from FY 1999-2003 indicated that growth for administrative positions exceeded that of teachers and all other staff, and district business support was much higher than district administrators, school administrators and school support staff. Enrollment did affect staffing levels, and salaries for administrators at schools with 15,000 or more students were higher than those schools with fewer than 500 students. The study found that the Department of Education annual reports do not provide adequate staffing information, and it was recommended that SDE improve data reporting about administrative staffing.

It was clarified that this report considers clerical staff and attendance clerks as school support staff. District office staff and business managers are considered business support staff, and counselors are not considered part of administrative staff. The increase in staff could not be directly linked to additional state or federal mandates. The full report provides a breakdown of new positions, and 86 were new Information Technology staff and 50 were business managers.

Mr. Ned Parrish, Performance Evaluator, Office of Performance Evaluations, addressed the findings for fiscal oversight and accountability. Around 60.7% of public school funding comes from state funds, 30.7% comes from local funds, and 8.6% comes from federal funds. School districts need to demonstrate accountability for public monies by reporting revenues and expenditures. Fiscal data inconsistencies limit data comparability and the ability to accurately determine statewide costs. Statutes require annual audits, and the SDE directs auditors to review IFARMS data coding, average daily attendance (ADA), staffing information and pupil transportation figures.

Recommendations made to the SDE were (1) take steps to improve accuracy and uniformity of fiscal data reported by school districts; (2) strengthen oversight of financial audits to ensure they include a review of data districts submit to the state; and (3) improve statewide reporting of district financial information and make information available on its website.

Mr. Chris Shoop reported on School District Purchasing and Contracting. It was found that competitive shopping is not usually required by the districts except for purchases above $25,000 and bids or quotes are not required for many services. The approval process is not clearly defined or followed, and written agreements are not always in place. Recommendations were that (1) the Legislature should consider price quote requirements for districts, giving specific statutory authority to districts for use of statewide contracts; (2) OSBE should consult with the Division of Purchasing to develop bid requirements for purchased services; and (3) the SDE should ensure annual financial audits of purchasing processes, develop model contracting components, determine opportunities for cooperatives, explore online purchases, and encourage district staff to attend state training.

Mr. Shoop also reported that $282 million was spent on health benefits in FY 2002, and districts health insurance costs increased between 8% and 40% while state employees health insurance plan increased 17%. District health plans vary in type, cost, and benefits. It was determined that statewide pooling may help control costs, and it was recommended that the Legislature consider authorizing an in-depth study of potential cost savings of a statewide health insurance plan for districts.

ADJOURN: Chairman Barraclough thanked the presenters for their excellent reports. There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 10:35 A.M.




DATE: February 12, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representative Naccarato
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:06 A.M. with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: Two sets of minutes for February 10 were reviewed. Representative Lake made a motion to accept the minutes from the Joint House and Senate Education Meeting as printed. He made a second motion to accept the minutes from the full committee meeting with a correction to paragraph 5, line 3; change "remove" to "fund". Both motions carried by voice vote.
PRESENTATION: Dr. Mike Rush, Administrator, Idaho Division of Professional-Technical Education (PTE), presented the Division's annual report. The full report can be obtained from the Idaho Division of Professional-Technical Education Office.

The Division's budget is divided into four major areas into which dollars are allocated.

State Leadership and Technical Assistance

Today's competitive environment demands quality programs, and to that end the Division is working on several major initiatives to help the programs and teachers meet those challenges: (1) rigorous technical programs; (2) integration of academic achievement standards; and (3) articulation of high school and college curricula. To ensure PTE courses contribute to student success on the ISAT, a project was implemented to align all of the PTE curricula with the achievement standards. About 80% of the curriculum is aligned with the standards.

General Programs

General programs include secondary program support, guidance and curriculum, workforce training and teacher education. According to Joyce Gioia, a business forecaster, "the majority of rapidly growing occupational areas are suited to vocational and technical education programs." Unfortunately, there still exists a traditional, and a not very accurate, image of PTE. Preparation for 70% of the jobs fit PTE. To demonstrate how the vocational curricula has changed, Dr. Rush described some of the programs/projects Idaho PTE students have been involved with as the Autonomous Underwater Vehicle Competition placed 7th; stream restoration in cooperation with Idaho ranchers and Fish and Game; underwater mapping in conjunction with INEEL; study of goats eating Leafy Spurge; and a research project on controlling dairy odors.

Dr. Rush said he is often asked "how the current focus on academic performance is affecting PTE programs?" He said it has had some negative impact because teachers are being moved to teach remedial courses, students are being put into remedial courses, and dropouts are occuring. He quoted Paul Barton who said "These efforts to raise the achievement and introduce more rigor will not reach the 25-30% who drop out. In addition to academic rigor, we need to explore options that broaden the appeal to graduate and get the diploma." Dr. Rush said we know PTE (1) keeps youth in school; (2) makes it is possible to "major" in PTE and academics; (3) is an economic value to the individual and the community; and (4) does not limit postsecondary education.

The past five years, 223 new programs have been implemented with a net increase of 86. Secondary PTE enrollment has increased 17 percent in the last five years, and 78% in the past 10 years. This growth is not a result of increased student populations.

General program dollars support several types of programs. Professional-Technical schools were created through 1998 legislation. They provide high-end, state-of-the-art technical programs. Idaho now has 11 such schools and 117 programs. High school technical programs lead to an AAS degree, and since 1999, enrollment has grown by over 300%. This past year 2,000 tech prep students graduated from high school. Distance learning projects provide rural students with an opportunity to participate in health professions education. The Idaho Career Information System is one of the premier career information systems in the United States and it is used by 94% of the school districts, all job service and vocational rehabilitation offices, 23 college and university locations and the correctional facilities. Workforce training programs are non-credit programs targeted to adults in the workplace who need to upgrade or learn new skills.

Postsecondary Programs

This past year, in spite of a significant decrease in funding, full-time student enrollment increased 7% in Idaho's technical colleges. Positive placement was 95%. Most programs have some sort of business and industry certification that enhances the portability of credits.

Underprepared Adults/Displaced Homemakers

The fourth major program area for funding is the underprepared adults/displaced homemakers. It is through these funds, primarily federal and dedicated, that technical colleges provide an array of educational opportunities that enable people, who would not otherwise make it, to have a successful shot at succeeding in our educational system. The Centers for New Directions are a key part of these services.

Dr. Rush provided the following comments in response to questions:

(1) PTE students can't survive without academic skills; the reading level for an auto tech is 14th grade. Just passing the ISAT test is not enough, and students need to learn skills in an applied setting. He is a strong supporter of high academics.

(2) GED programs have shown a high growth for those under 20.

(3) Idaho has to have adequate capacity for professional technical. It is common for students to wait as long as 18 months to get into some programs, i.e. nursing.

(4) The ability to transfer credits is better, but still a problem.

Dr. Rush outlined cost-saving measures that have been taken due to declining PTE budgets.

  • Reduced administrative staff (7.5% fewer than 1996; 37% fewer since 1980)
  • Increased administrative responsibility by 540%
  • Dropped state leadership cost from 6.5% in 1996 to 4.9% in 2004
  • Reduced secondary added cost support by 8.4%
  • Postponed implementation of new added cost formula
  • Shifted money from administration to faculty
  • Eliminated 31 FTP from FY02
  • Increased part-time enrollment; charged students
  • Increased teaching loads
  • Hired part-time faculty
  • Used distance learning
  • Reduced access
  • Postponed instructional equipment purchases


Another way to look at the impact is to look at the amount spent per student. Cost per student dropped from a high in 2001 of $8,051 to $6,923 in 2003, over $1,000 per student. Capacity building money for technical college enrollment has been well spent. Cost per additional FTE is $5,818 compared to $7,000 cost per student systemwide. Colleges experienced a 9% reduction in 2003 or 54% of the capacity building funds. Instructional equipment has taken the biggest hit from 9.1% of the budget in 1991 to 2.8% in 2004.

The FY2005 budget contains no new above MCO requests, but there are some requests to address maintenance needs and increased enrollment. The combined Professional-Technical budget request is for $573,700 of which 94% goes to the postsecondary system. A request for $535,100 to cover operating expenses and capital outlay is highly understated because it is based on the significantly reduced CO base; a base which was eliminated. The CO base is less than 3%. Non-standard adjustments for enrollment were $334,900 for secondary workload adjustment, $362,400 for professional-technical schools, $899,300 for college capacity building and $48,800 for EITC library and utility costs. The final MCO request is te Governor's recommendation for salary which still leaves the Idaho average about 10% below other states. He emphasized how critical funding for equipment and professional-technical school rollup is to ensure 735 students have slots.

Dr. Rush closed by stating that the lump sum appropriation for the technical colleges and the carry-over authority have been critical to the system's ability to effectively manage the budget.

PRESENTATION: Ms. Shirley Silver, Idaho Division of Professional-Technical Education (PTE), presented the annual report for the "Idaho Displaced Homemaker Programs". In 1980, the Idaho Legislature passed the "Equal Opportunity for Displaced Homemaker Act" to serve single parents and displaced homemakers. The legislation authorized establishment of counseling centers for displaced homemakers based on the needs of each region in the state. In 1982, Senate Bill 1306 increased the divorce fee by $20 to establish a dedicated fund to operate these centers. Funding from the divorce fee, combined with federal vocational education funds, enabled the Division to setup Centers for New Directions in each region. These centers were housed on the technical college campuses, where participants had access to a full range of support services already available on campus, as well as important skill training.

This program's mission is to help participants become economically and personally self-sufficient. Results are measured by training and employment. The centers served over 1800 individuals of which 87% were female and 13% were male. Seventy-one percent had a positive outcome (Attachment 1). Ms. Silver explained that the data provided in Attachment 1 only counts the individuals for whom a center counselor conducted an intake interview, provided one or more services, and followed-up. Only individuals who entered school or found jobs in this fiscal year were counted in the return on investment figures provided.

Ms. Silver provided the Fiscal Year 2003 Annual report for the Idaho Displaced Homemaker Programs. This report is available at the Idaho Division of Professional-Technical Education Office. This report provides highlights of the Center activities, employment and educational outcomes, stories of successful clients in each region, and characteristics of the population served. It was noted that 90% of the participants in this program have children, 3,193 children to be exact. Participants are helped with parenting skills and learn to balance work and family. Center coordinators supplement state funding with other grants and technical college support to expand services, and they work with social service agencies.

ADJOURN: Chairman Barraclough thanked Dr. Rush and Ms. Silver for their excellent presentations. There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 10:20 A.M.




DATE: February 13, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:05 A.M. with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: The minutes of February 11 and February 12, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Trail made a motion to accept both sets of minutes as printed. The motion carried by voice vote.
RS13967C2 Representative Trail explained that an error occurred when the RS was changed, and he asked to have RS13967C2 returned to the sponsor.
Mr. Phil Homer, Idaho Association of School Administrators, (IASA) stated he would be filling in for Dr. Mike Friend who was detained in the Senate. Mr. Homer indicated his organization has been dealing with virtual learning issues the past few months.
Mr. Eric Earling, Deputy Secretary's Regional Representative, Region X introduced himself. Mr. Earling explained that he is working on the implementation end of NCLB. When asked if he was familiar with Idaho's HCR dealing with NCLB, he said he was aware of the resolution, but his focus is to implement the law as Congress passed it.
PRESENTATION: Dr. Gene Davis, Director, Intermountain Center for Education Effectiveness, College of Education, Idaho State University, briefed the committee on the findings of the Center for Policy Studies, Education Research, and Community Development titled Virtual Schools: Policy Formation Process (Attachment 1). The study included research from 21 states on virtual learning and found that there is a mix of activities, no common rules and no common funding patterns. Funding varies from challenge grants, private funding, and ADA.

There is an overriding need for a systematic and consistent policy approach for the creation of virtual schools. Twelve key considerations when designing, developing, and implementing virtual learning policy are funding, accreditation, credit, course development, standards, instructor skill sets/professional development, consistent schedules, access, privacy, focus, integration and legislation.

Florida is seen as the leader in virtual schooling. The content and assessments used in its courses are aligned with state standards, and all teachers have a Florida certification in the subjects they teach. Florida has set a ceiling on the number of students and targets the low performing students. The legislature has funded the school since 1997, but has given direction for them to become self-sufficient. Texas has three pilot programs, and they fund each one differently from just materials to full ADA. They will not expand these programs until they are proven effective.

The study concluded that the main issues related to virtual learning are (1) quality and accountability; (2) access and equity; and (3) funding. Oversight in the majority of states lies with the State Department of Education, but other governing bodies may be a university, the Governor or the Legislature. The opportunities and challenges are numerous for virtual schools. There is a strong emphasis on virtual learning in states with large rural populations.

Dr. Davis provided the following research based answers to questions:

Funding - Funding for virtual schools is less per pupil. In Florida it is $1300 less per pupil, and in Texas it ranges from $1,000 per pupil to full ADA for one of the pilot projects. From a policy standpoint, an equitable way to fund and get results might be to set a value for the system based on the results. The study did not look at the internal operations regarding state and federal funding.

Teachers - Certification and accountability were looked at in the study. Teachers must use tools, techniques and strategies to engage students through the computer. Virtual learning requires followup and monitoring, parental cooperation, and an honesty policy.

Test Score Comparisons - Comparison of virtual school test scores versus public school test scores was not part of the study. Various universities provide this type of analysis, i.e Florida State. Virtual schools should use standards based curriculum and be just as accountable as any other public school.

PRESENTATION: Mr. Bicker Therien, Director, Idaho Digital Learning Academy, reported to the committee (Attachment 2). The Idaho Digital Learning Academy (IDLA) was created within the State Department of Education through 2002 legislation, but no funding was appropriated. Alternate funding was sought and secured through a $1 million grant from the JA and Kathryn Albertson Foundation, which accelerated implementation of the IDLA. The accelerated implementation enabled them to hire and train staff, establish an online delivery platform and develop an Idaho standards based curriculum currently consisting of 57 credits. Approximately 50% of their staff have advanced degrees.

In 2003, IDLA received a $450,000 appropriation and changes to the original legislation allows them to charge districts or students $100 per credit. IDLA curriculum and teachers are available for any public school and public school student in Idaho.

The IDLA serves 1500 high school students from throughout Idaho and several foreign countries. IDLA is currently developing ISAT review and practice test materials to further assist schools, and the schools are very excited about this opportunity. IDLA is also working with several districts to assist with professional development of teachers and paraprofessionals, and feel they are just scratching the surface of what IDLA can mean to education in Idaho.

Strengths of IDLA's model of virtual delivery are (1) curriculum is locally developed, locally owned, paid for once and can be amended; (2) students are in constant contact with a highly qualified Idaho certified teacher; and (3) educational choice to public schools is provided, and IDLA is a service rather than competitor.

Mr. Therien responded to questions as follows:

Costs and Reporting - It costs $3,000 for Idaho teachers to develop each credit. A Board of Directors governs the IDLA and consists of three superintendents, two principals, and two citizen-at-large positions. Blaine District is the sponsoring district, and IDLA is required to comply with all state reporting requirements.

Contact Hours - Teachers are in the classes five days a week and must respond to questions within 24 hours and tests are to be graded within 48 hours. They have a few full-time students, but most students take an average of 2 courses.

Curriculum - IDLA provides offline materials for projects, and students have the capability of accessing web-based text books. Some hands-on labs are being developed, but most experiments can be done in kitchens at home. Additional AP course offerings are being developed.

PRESENTATION: Mr. Steve Adams, Director, Idaho Leadership Academy, and President of the Idaho Charter School Association, reported on the Academy. The Idaho Leadership Academy is a charter school chartered by the Snake River school board. It is in the development stages and serves 40 high school students. They modeled their charter after the Idaho Virtual High School in Mountain Home, and they offer a Liberal Arts curriculum consisting of Great Books (aligned to standards), liberal arts, leadership, electives and values. Their focus is on character and leadership. They bus students to Snake River for activities and rely on IDVA for some electives.

Tools for distant learning used by the Academy are virtual classroom, virtual whiteboard, web broadcast, one-on-one voice/video and teleconference and telephone. Their goal is to setup regional activity centers and have students throughout the state. Several issues have surfaced concerning their charter: (1) issues regarding violation of Idaho statute by having face to face services for students; (2) issues with IEPs for special education students, and (3) issues with what Snake River's liability involves. The Academy is banking on the temporary rules, and they are appreciative of what the Office of the State Board of Education is trying to accomplish.

Concerns about NCLB are that their teachers teach multiple subjects and it will be difficult for them to have endorsements for all subjects. When asked the cost per student, Mr. Adams said it is around $7,000 per student, and no local funding is being provided for utilities. When asked if he feels the charter school system is a financial blessing for Bingham County, he said "yes, with reservations".

PRESENTATION: Mr. Larry Slade, Principal and Founder, Idaho Virtual High School (IDVHS), reported that IDVHS is a public charter school chartered by the Mountain Home School District. They are accredited by the Northwest Association of Schools and by the Idaho State Department of Education. Their mission is to provide Idaho students online high school courses that are rigorous, accredited and tuition free. They are governed by a board of five to seven directors that are governed by provisions in the charter and by the corporate by-laws. School administrative staff consists of a principal, one registrar, one bookkeeper, and a director of curriculum and instruction.

IDVHS has four programs to assist students and schools.

  1. The fall/winter program runs from August 25 through June 20 and admits any home school or dual enrollment student.
  2. The summer school program helps "At Risk" students ro recover credits during the summer months.
  3. The foundation skills academy helps students improve basic academic skills in reading, writing and math and prepares them for the ISAT.
  4. The school partnership program allows small school to hire their own online teachers to teach IDVHS courses to their students in their school.


Attachment 3 provides courses offered, when they are taught, student demographics, RIT scores and the distance education funding model used by IDVHS. All classes are taught online and a Flat Rate funding model is used to report attendance to the State Department of Education. This model follows a business model where time to complete certain jobs is estimated. Therefore, IDVHS attendance is based on work completed using the estimated time it takes to complete an assignment. All of the assignment time values in a course add up to 90 hours, or the equivalent of working on one subject one hour per day, five days per week for 90 days or one semester. A student in a traditional school is counted in attendance, even if he or she doesn't complete any work.

IDVHS ended up with carryover funding this year because the cost per student was $4,300, which was about $2,400 less per student than their appropriation. Their charter is a 3-year charter and will be up for renewal next year.

Dr. Mike Friend, Executive Director, Idaho Association of School Administrator's thanked the committee for the opportunity to present this information. He said he would like to share with them the IASA's ideas about funding virtual schools.
ADJOURN: Chairman Barraclough adjourned the meeting at 10:50 A.M.




DATE: February 16, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representatives Rydalch, Naccarato
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:06 A.M. with a quorum being present.
RS13967C3 Representative Trail presented RS13967C3 to the committee, stating that Representative Ringo is a co-sponsor of this legislation. This legislation will amend Section 33-4307, Idaho Code, to provide that the grant payment for Promise Scholarship Category B students is for the first year of attendance in the maximum amount of $1,000. This legislation will be delayed by one year because colleges and universities already have their scholarship requirements advertised.

Representative Trail and Representative Ringo worked with the financial directors from the various colleges and universities, the State Department of Education and the State Board of Education while drafting these changes. Those contacted strongly recommended moving in this direction, because they feel it will provide better incentives to bring Idaho students to Idaho colleges and universities their first year. Also, this legislation will simplify administration of the Promise Scholarship, and it is estimated that .5 staff FTE, per institution, may be saved. Ross Borden, Legislative Services, was contacted regarding the fiscal impact of this legislation, and he feels the impact for the first three years will be neutral.

Representative Ringo stated that she sees this legislation as reducing administration, and helping students. She believes this will create a win-win situation.

It was explained that the estimated fiscal impact of $60,000 for the first year was estimated based on the number of sophomores still eligible for the Promise Scholarship. When asked how many colleges and universities were contacted, Representative Trail said he contacted six schools. Ms. Dana Kelly, Office of the State Board, said she called all 10 public and private schools, and they concurred that changes need to be made. Administration is complicated by the fact that students transfer to other Idaho schools and tracking eligibility is sometime difficult.

MOTION: Representative Boe made a motion that RS13967C3 be introduced. The motion carried by voice vote.
HB 602 Representative Andersen introduced HB 602. This legislation allows education employees to utilize a portion of accrued sick leave to supplement worker's compensation to maintain his or her regular salary while recovering from a disability incurred on the job and covered by worker's compensation. He explained that often classified employees do not receive high wages and end up having to pay family health insurance costs while receiving about a third of their regular wages.

Representative Andersen explained that he consulted with the Industrial Commission and with the Attorney General's office while drafting this legislation. A committee member asked about the use of the word "straight" in Line 34, and it was explained that employees could use all but a prorated amount of sick leave. Line 28 does allow the board of trustees to supplement the worker's compensation payment, but this is not mandatory. The provisions outlined here do exist for state employees in a different section of Idaho Code. The language used here was recommended by the Attorney General's office.

MOTION: Representative Trail made a motion to send HB 602 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation.

A concern was voiced about the impact of other legislation that may be introduced that would limit the amount of sick leave accrued. Representative Andersen said this may create a problem with the ability for employees to cover health insurance costs. It was asked if removing the words "which would result in duplicate compensation" on Lines 34-35 would hurt this legislation. Representative Andersen said he did not feel it would. When asked if this legislation would encourage people not to return to work, he said he doesn't believe it will because Worker's Compensation benefits are scrutinized, and employees would receive additional benefits when returning to work. He stated the purpose of this legislation is to allow people to pay their family insurance.

Dr. Cliff Green, Executive Director, Idaho School Board Association, said he has discussed this bill with the Idaho Association of School Administrators and felt it was an innocuous bill. He did question why this is being addressed if school boards currently have this ability. He clarified that sick leave is paid out of general funds.
Dr. Mike Friend, Executive Director, Idaho Association of School Administrators, said the IASA does support this legislation. They feel it provides clarification, and they support the fact that Line 31 specifies "may" rather than "shall".
MOTION: Representative Kulczyk, made a substitute motion to send HB 602 to the amending order with committee amendments attached to place a period after the word "leave" on Line 34 and remove the words "which would result in duplicate compensation" on Lines 34-35. He stated he hasn't seen this type of language used in other areas of Idaho Code.

When asked if a school board can implement this policy on their own, Representative Andersen stated that the Attorney General's office indicated that possibly they could, but their interpretation was to clarify this section of code. A concern was voiced that it might injure the Worker's Compensation system which encourages employees to go back to work as soon as possible. When asked if there have been employees who reported problems, Representative Andersen said he had the names of six to twelve employees who have had problems.

VOTE ON SUBSTITUTE MOTION: A roll call vote was taken on the substitute motion to send HB 602 to the amending order with committee amendments attached to place a period after the word "leave" on Line 34 and remove the words "which would result in duplicate compensation" on Lines 34-35. The motion failed on a 14 to 2 vote. Representatives Barraclough, Lake, Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, and Sayler voted "NAY", and Representatives Kulczyk and Nielsen voted "AYE"
VOTE ON ORIGINAL MOTION: A vote was called for on the original motion to sent HB 602 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote. No members requested to be recorded as voting "NAY".
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, Chairman Barraclough adjourned the meeting at 9:50 A.M.




DATE: February 17, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representatives Jones and Kulczyk
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:08 A.M. with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: The minutes of February 13 and February 16, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Cannon made a motion to accept both sets of minutes as written. Representative Sayler suggested that the minutes for February 16, Page 1, Paragraph 2, Line 8 should reflect the .5 staff FTE saved is per institution. The motion, to accept the minutes of February 13 as written, and to accept the minutes of February 16 with the above noted correction, passed by voice vote.
HB 631 Representative Meyer introduced HB 631 and offered an amendment (Attachment 1). Based on suggestions from Representative Kulczyk and Representative Lake, Representative Meyer said he "lifted the radiator cap on HB 631 and put a new vehicle underneath it". He explained that the way the current code is written, it requires county commissioners, mayors, city councils and school district boards of trustees to cooperate with community colleges, but this should work both ways. There is a lot of cooperation that takes place right now between Northern Idaho College and these entities, but a recent effort to house a professional-technical high school at NIC seemed to be meeting some resistance.

Representative Meyer said he was very impressed with the programs at the College of Southern Idaho and the way they work with the community.

A brief discussion followed, and it was asked whether "authorized and empowered to cooperate" means colleges will have to agree with the positions presented. It was explained that there is cooperation now, but the fear is that if college administration or boards change, this may not be the case. It was pointed out that the legislation also specifies that if facilities are available, school districts should be allowed to use these facilities. It was suggested that the cooperative efforts could result in cost savings. Representative Meyer was asked to research the other side of the coin and look into what prompted the original legislation. It was suggested that deleting the original legislation might level the field.

MOTION: Representative Block made a motion to send HB 631 to the amending order with committee amendments attached. She cited the efforts CSI made to attract Dell Computers to the Twin Falls area, and the cooperation with the high schools to allow students to complete college credits before they graduate. Representative Lake addressed an earlier comment about the original legislation, stating it was adopted in 1939.

A vote was called for, and the motion to send HB 631 to the amending order with committee amendments attached carried by voice vote. Representative Lake seconded the motion.

ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, Chairman Barraclough adjourned the meeting at 9:27 A.M.




DATE: February 18, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representative Lake, Jones, Block, Cannon, and Garrett
GUESTS: Former representative and member of the House Education Committee, Wayne Kendell, was introduced. Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:07 A.M. with a quorum being present.
RS 14115 Representative Rydalch presented RS 14115, stating this RS will be referred to the appropriate committee, if printed. This problem was brought to her attention by a person in Idaho Falls who encountered a problem because of a loop hole in the current law.

A new section to Chapter 83, Idaho Code is added to make it a felony for an adult criminal sex offender to apply or accept employment at a day care center, group day care facility or family day care home or to remain on the premises while children are present. It also makes it a misdemeanor for the owner or operator of any day care center ... to knowingly employ or accept volunteer services from a person who is an adult criminal sex offender. Section 2 of the new code applies the same penalties for juvenile sex offenders. Section 4, (7) provides for written notifications to include warnings outlining the penalties. Section 6 is a new Section that does not close the door for anyone who has proven their recovery to petition the courts.

Mr. William von Tagen, Attorney General's office responded to questions.

MOTION: Representative Andersen made a motion to introduce RS 14115. The motion carried by voice vote.
PRESENTATION: Mr. Bill Robertson, Interim President, Eastern Idaho Technical College (EITC), stated that EITC is happy to be a technical college, and their mission has not changed. They are willing to accept new challenges if so directed. EITC is accredited by NWEA, and they have several programs that are nationally accredited. The campus is about 65 acres with approximately 60% of the land improved.

EITC has a nine county service area, and they service many remote areas. Health education is one of their main emphasis areas. Through cooperation with the Teton Valley Medical Center, the remote delivery nursing program in Driggs recently graduated 20 students. This program has been replicated at Salmon and Arco.

The bonding legislation last year authorized a health education building to be built on their college campus. The Office of the State Board has determined that Idaho State University will have equal access to this building. They have encountered some conflicts with the bonding regulations because of differences between the building authority and the EDA. They are working to resolve these conflicts and hope to engage an architect in the next couple of months and begin construction by next spring.

Mr. Robertson stated that they do an excellent job helping to provide economic development in the areas served. The college provides workforce training for thousands, both on campus and at the work site. Adult basic education is a big part of their mission, targeting those with skills below 8th grade, and they have about 350 GED graduates per year. The college works closely with the Center for New Directions, and he urged continued funding for these programs that are providing counseling and direction to many. They also work very closely with the area high schools to provide technical preparation courses.

Their enrollment is stable in spite of budget cuts and they have done a lot to maximize their efforts. The average age of their students is just under 30, and they work with "second chance" students. Student fees will be increased about 6.5% this year, but it is feared they may be closing the door to some of their most vulnerable students. Mr. Robertson said they welcome the CEC increases, because they have excellent staff. They will continue to work towards economic development in the nine areas they serve.

When asked about sharing their new health education building with ISU, Mr. Robertson said they are more than willing to share the space, although the original design considered only their needs. One area of concern is making sure their practical nursing students get a standing in ISU's baccalaureate nursing program, because he feels the rigor of the nursing program at EITC is as high as other universities. They do have a waiting list in all health education programs.

EITC draws on the community for adjunct professors and for volunteers, especially in the health education areas. The community has been very responsive to their needs by donating equipment and supplies and providing scholarships. They are talking with the Department of Energy and to potential bidders on the INEEL Phase IV project in the hopes of providing training in environmental safety and providing computer and networking training to employees. They presently provide training courses for the BLM in wildland firefighting, and are looking into moving into structural firefighting training.

PRESENTATION: Mr. Jeff Duggan, Assistant to the President, College of Southern Idaho (CSI), explained that President Meyerhoeffer was unable to be here today because the Congressional delegation was in Twin this week. CSI is the youngest and largest community college in Idaho with a 240-acre campus plus an additional 80 acres just recently acquired. They plan to put a higher education center on the newly acquired land and to provide needed parking.

CSI serves a diverse student population and provides two-year degree programs and serves four-year transfer students, professional-technical students and under-prepared and low-literacy students (30% have only 6th grade skills). The college provides a center for the region's educational needs, economy and cultural events. They collaborate with K-12 education, partner with universities, and promote community economic development (Attachment 1).

Statistics provided were that CSI has (1) the fastest growing school with a larger freshman class than University of Idaho; (2) a .8% population of foreign students; (3) a large contingency going onto 4 year schools; (4) 150 hours of telecommuted courses per week; and (5) a large GED program with 450 graduates last year.

CSI's increase in student fees will be about 6%, and the fear is that if budgets continue to be cut and property tax revenues decrease the increases in student fees will eventually diminish student access. Mr. Duggan explained that CSI has been fiscally conservative and cut faculty travel and training. Expenditures per full-time students decreased 15%.

Economic development is the key to community colleges, and CSI is extremely proud of their connection with Dell and Freightliner and Penske. CSI will be happy if they receive the Governor's requested budget amount for next year. When asked about using computerized systems for remedial training, Mr. Duggan explained the entire second floor of their library is dedicated for this purpose.

RS 14025 Representative Eskridge presented RS14025 to the committee. He explained that the purpose of this legislation is to expand and clarify the technology competency requirement for certified public school employees and to define a waiver process. The technical competency requirements are in rule, but no procedure is outlined for waivers. This legislation will allow those K-12 educators with endorsements in physical education, music or art, whose primary teaching assignment is in the area of the endorsement to be exempt for the technology proficiency requirement. It also requires that the state board of education, through rule, provide a process to request a waiver from the requirement, upon application for recertification.

A discussion followed and a concern was voiced about whether this would lower the standard and have an affect on the use of ISIMS. Representative Eskridge said he does not believe this relieves teachers from reporting student progress.

MOTION: Representative Eberle made a motion to introduce RS 14025.
Senator Keough was introduced and offered to provide some clarification. She said until last year Idaho required that 90% of the

teachers at a school district had to meet the technology competency requirements. Last year this was changed to require 100%. When the 90% rule was put in place, it focused on those teachers coming out of college, and it is estimated that about 90-95% of Idaho teachers have passed the technology competency requirements. There are some relevancy issues as to whether teachers need the technology competency before they can be recertified. When asked if only those teachers with endorsements in physical education, music or art will be given a waiver, she said this language mirrors the reading certification requirement.

VOTE: A vote was called for on the motion to introduce RS 14025, and the motion carried by voice vote.
Chairman Barraclough asked the committee what their thoughts are as far as scheduling a field trip to a charter school or a public school. The consensus was to visit a public school with a diverse population to see what issues they are faced with.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, Chairman Barraclough adjourned the meeting at 10:40 A.M.




DATE: February 19, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:06 A.M. with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: The minutes of February 17 were reviewed. Representative Rydalch made a motion to accept the minutes with a change from "legislation" to "problem" in Paragraph 2, Line 2. The motion carried.
RS13927C2 Representative Boe presented RS13927C2 to the committee, stating this legislation will make attendance in kindergarten mandatory. She cited the emphasis on standards, assessment and reading at grade level by our schools and explained that expectations for kindergartners are much higher today. This bill provides as much flexibility as possible with the language in lines 11 and 24. If the parents and the teacher feel a child is not ready for kindergarten at a specific age they have some flexibility. The intent of the legislation is to ensure all children learn the reading readiness skills and are given the same opportunities to succeed.

The fiscal impact of $2.2 million is based on the fact that about 5-6% of first graders have not attended kindergarten. The effective date will be July 1, 2005 to allow for funding.

A discussion followed and concerns centered around (1) resistance to being forced to send children to kindergarten and are we causing harm to those not ready; (2) fiscal impact; (3) small percentage of students this addresses; and (4) intrusion into homes and can parents "opt" out. Representative Boe responded that the intent is to get the attention of families and let them know the expectations of students entering first grade. The language is taken from the school attendance statute and is intended to be flexible. The fiscal impact was a surprise, but if we look at all the millions spent on remediation it is hoped this legislation will help reduce those costs. First grade teachers spend a great deal of time helping the 5-6% of students who haven't attended kindergarten. The ISBA and the IASA support this legislation, but because it is not in bill form, it is difficult to gauge the support or opposition.

MOTION: Representative Jones made a motion to introduce RS13927C2, stating he feels this RS has enough merit to warrant a full discussion and receive public input. The motion carried by voice vote.
PRESENTATION: Mr. Mark Dunham, Director of Government Relations, introduced Boise State University (BSU) President, Dr. Bob Kustra. President Kustra was President of Eastern Kentucky University and served in the Illinois Legislature for 10 years.

President Kustra spoke about his recent opportunity to talk with the new University of Idaho President and emphasized his selection is a win-win situation for Idaho and the University of Idaho. President Kustra stated this is a new era of collaboration, and he is committed to work on this with all of the colleges and universities in Idaho (Attachment 1).

BSU looks a lot different than it did in 1994 or even in 2000. They have 18,400 students enrolled and expect enrollment to continue to increase. Because of the budget cutbacks they are now having to turn students away. About 91% or over 16,000 students are Idaho residents, and it is extremely important that state institutions accommodate Idaho students so they will remain in Idaho. There has been a 25% increase over the last five years of Idaho students indicating on the ACT exam that BSU is their "first choice" university. BSU is focusing on residential students and is opening up 300 units of housing for undergraduate students and 400-500 units of married and graduate housing.

Eight BSU teaching faculty have received the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching "Idaho Professor of the Year" award. The 2003 recipient, Alicia Garza, is the sixth BSU faculty in a row to receive the award. BSU has embarked on several biomolecular research efforts, partnering with U of I and ISU, has connections to INEEL and is doing research on Alzheimers and breast cancer. For the third straight year, the College of Engineering was named one of the top 50 undergraduate engineering schools by U.S. News & World Report. It was stressed how important it is for BSU to connect to Idaho's economy and without Micron the engineering program would not exist.

President Kustra addressed the challenges of decreased state funding for higher education, not just in Idaho but in many other states, i.e., Virginia and Colorado. There must be a funding commitment to state institutions or students will seek other alternatives such as online degrees. Access and participation rates are two issues. Less than 50% of Idaho high school graduates immediately enroll in college. He said he is not so sure we are addressing these issues in Idaho, because there is no statewide system of community colleges. He cited the fact that CSI is teaching Micron employees applied technology courses, and Treasure Valley Community College in Oregon is teaching about 400 students at the Idaho Migrant Council facility in Caldwell. BSU has 150 acres of land in Canyon County and they need the state's help to transition this into a true community college.

President Kustra closed by saying the challenges are many and the opportunities are plentiful. BSU will continue to do their mission and he welcomes any suggestions and ideas the members may have. Several committee members thanked him for sharing his vision for BSU as well as the state education system and for his commitment to collaboration with all of the colleges and universities in the state. President Kustra said he failed to mention that he feels we are doing a disservice to students by charging them twice as much when they want to obtain a 2-year associate degree.

A concern was voiced about using student fees for salaries, and Dr. Kustra said he hopes that the proposal on the table for a 2% increase in CEC funds and the increase for health benefits is truly considered new money and that they are not forced back on student fees.

In response to whether BSU plans to use the U of I Model for a learning emporium, President Kustra explained that there are 30 institutions participating in this research. Computers are set up in pods and faculty and graduate students assist the students. The results have been astounding, students are learning better, the costs have been reduced and the software keeps pace with the students. This concept has not caught on because faculty must learn to be coaches and need a push and a shove to make the adjustment. BSU's new building will be an interactive learning center with cutting edge wireless technology and will lend itself to this type of learning environment.

Scholarships at BSU are one of their biggest challenges and they are working on a scholarship campaign to try and attain private scholarships. The Promise Scholarship is one of the categories people can donate to.

Regarding the proposals for a change in the State Board of Education governance, President Kustra stated he has worked under all types of governance, but feels having one Board has its advantages. He suggested that adjustments could be made but not a total restructure.

PRESENTATION: Ms. Mary Jones, Manager of the Idaho Infant Toddler Program, presented the 2003 progress report for this program. (The progress report has been jointly prepared by the Interagency Coordinating Council and the Infant Toddler Program and may be obtained from the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare.) The Idaho Infant Toddler Program is part of the educational system because babies are born to learn. The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare has served as the lead agency for the early intervention system that is administered federally through the US Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs. Last year the Idaho Infant Toddler Program served 2,719 children through the provisions of an Individualized Family Services Plan or IFSP.

Advancements in medical technology have helped identify problems in the very early stages of life. Newborn hearing screening, multi-phase metabolic screens, and vision screening devices are changing the world of early intervention and contributing to growth in the number of very young children who will benefit from early intervention services in Idaho.

Ms. Jones provided an overview of the services provided and the key elements that make up a coordinated, interagency system of care for infants and toddlers and their families (Attachment 2). Services are provided in natural learning environments where a child has the best potential to learn and where they would typically do their learning if they didn't have a disability. Questionnaires are sent to 5,508 parents of infants and toddlers that can be used for screening purposes. This safety net/identification program is operated through contracts with the Public Health Districts and helps to identify children early if their development lags.

Transition planning begins as the child approaches age three to ensure the family receives continued services, and part of this planning is with the local school districts. This past year there has been a special focus on the transition from early intervention to early childhood special education or preschool services. Ms. Jones closed by emphasizing the collaborative work of the interagency early intervention system.

Ms. Kristina Rice, parent, spoke about the tremendous impact the Infant Toddler had on her family. Her first child, a daughter, appeared to be a healthy child, but at 18 months she was not walking or talking. She was finally diagnosed with a rare genetic disease and would have been institutionalized had it not been for this program and the support the family received. Through early intervention and extensive therapy her daughter now walks and is in preschool. Ms. Rice stated she received great support from this program and was treated with the upmost respect. She mentioned that she is seeing services reduced and urged their support for this program.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 10:52 A.M.




DATE: February 20, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:06 A.M. with a quorum being present.
HB 632 Representative Garrett presented HB 632 to the committee. She explained that this legislation provides that the local board of trustees at each school district shall adopt a policy permitting the self-administration of medication administered by way of a metered-dose inhaler by a pupil for asthma or other potentially life-threatening respiratory illness.

Representative Garrett worked very closely with the American Lung Association of Idaho, the Idaho School Boards Association (ISBA) and the doctors at St. Luke's while drafting this legislation.

PRO Dr. Cliff Green, Executive Director, Idaho School Boards Association (ISBA), spoke in support of HB 632 and commended Representative Garrett for the work she has done on this legislation. Dr. Green called the committee's attention to the CD they were given containing the ISBA's Model Policy Manual. This manual includes a model asthma policy to assist the local school districts in establishing their policy. He stated that this is state promulgated legislation that provides for local control.

Dr. Green clarified that the American Lung Association of Idaho will provide in-service training for the school districts to help train personnel. When asked if the ISBA model policy covers additional medications, Dr. Green stated the policy can be modified and then adopted. In response to whether this covers students who don't have their inhaler and borrow one, it was explained that one of the policy requirements is that the students are educated in the use of their inhaler and they carry it with them.

PRO Senator Andreason spoke in support of HB 632, stating he is well versed on the subject of asthma; it is a lot like drowning. He said he remembers as a young child having asthma and his mother rushing into his room and using "asthmadore" to clear his lungs. He stressed that time is of the essence when someone has an asthma attack.
MOTION: Representative Kulczyk made a motion to send HB 632 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation.
PRO Ms. Janet Shackelford, Registered Nurse, has served as school nurse in the Boise District for 16 years. As the Idaho Representative to the Board of the National Association of School Nurses (NASN), she stated that NASN does have a position statement that supports students managing and carrying their own inhalers. Ms. Shackelford addressed the issue of successfully managing all students that have a potential life threatening condition. The School Nurses of Idaho supports this legislation, but would like to be part of the team that discusses this school health issue and future school health concerns. A state level health consultant would bring some conformity to all Idaho schools (Attachment 1).
PRO Mrs. Crystal Dickson, parent, testified in favor of HB 632. She brought her daughter Courtney, who has been diagnosed with severe chronic asthma. Mrs. Dickson related Courtney's experiences at school trying to get access to her inhaler and the fact that school officials have at times been negligent in reacting to Courtney's attacks (Attachment 2). Courtney is limited in her activities and can't walk to school because she cannot carry her inhaler. Mrs. Dickson urged that they pass this legislation and not let these children suffer any more than they already do.
Ms. Laura Middleton, co-president of the School Nurse Organization of Idaho, stated that ideally she would be reporting the position of school nurses, but their organization was not contacted for either input or their position in regard to this important legislation. There is a larger issue to be addressed, but the school nurses do not wish to delay this legislation (Attachment 3). In the future they wish to be a part of the process as decisions are made concerning the health care or the medication needs of students. They offer their resources.
PRO Mrs. Elicia Zahm, member of Mother's of Asthmatics and the mother of a two-year-old asthmatic son Jacob, spoke in support of HB 632. Asthmatic students miss 14 million days of school annually and countless hours are spent in the nurse's office while they miss out on classroom instruction (Attachment 4). Very few schools in Idaho have full-time nurses, and often secretaries or office staff assist children with their inhalers. This legislation can reduce sick days and does NOT dictate to any district how to implement the policy. This law will protect the rights of Idaho's asthmatic students, and as a mother of an asthmatic son, she urged their favorable vote.
PRO Ms. Kera Yost, Program Director, American Lung Association (ALA) of Idaho, spoke in support of HB 632. An estimated 32,000 children in Idaho are diagnosed with pediatric asthma. That is approximately two children in a classroom of 30. Asthma is the leading chronic illness of children in the U.S. and the leading cause of school absenteeism (Attachment 5). The ALA of Idaho has been working closely with the Idaho School Board Association, the Statewide Asthma Prevention and Control Project, the Area Asthma Coalitions and health professional around the state to assist in the development of this legislation. Currently, there are active Asthma Coalitions in every health district in Idaho whose goal it is to provide asthma education through a program called "Open Airways". The ALA fully supports HB 632.
PRO Dr. Mike Friend, Executive Director, Idaho Association of School Administrators, spoke in support of HB 632. He stated this legislation will force a review of procedures. Use of inhalers is important. Dr. Friend said schools do use common sense in these situations, but are caught in a spot where policy dictates these medications are kept locked in cabinets. Few schools have nurses assigned to the district.
PRO Dr. Matthew Brown, Physician from Caldwell, stated the number of asthmatic children has grown from 6.7 million to 17.3 million in 1998. He stressed how important rapid access to medication is for these children and urged the committee to vote unanimously to adopt this legislation. It was asked if he knows of physicians who provide inhalers without instruction, and Dr. Brown indicated that responsible physicians all train their patients. It was also clarified that some inhalers are put together with air chambers or extenders.
PRO Dr. Tom Patterson, Pediatrician and member of the American Academy of Pediatricians, told about a young patient he diagnosed as asthmatic and through instruct therapy and use of a rescue inhaler she is playing basketball. This patient expressed a concern about not having time to get from her classroom to the nurse's office if she needs her inhaler. With this paramount legislation she won't have to worry. Dr. Patterson clarified that there is very little chance of someone overdosing on another student's inhaler.
PRO Dr. Kenny Bramwell, Physician representing EMI, stated that asthma is a preventable disease that responds to inhaled medications. He supports this legislation for the children who have to wait for their medication.
PRO Dr. Jerry Hirschfeld, Physician representing the American Academy of Pediatricians, NACHRI, and SLRMC, spoke in favor of HB 632 because it will provide access to rescue medications. He provided some figures on the fiscal impact of this disease, stating that 1362 of the 24,000 children seen at St. Luke's in 2003 were asthma patients. Of those 1362, 128 were admitted to the hospital. The enormity of the financial burden for 2003 was $2.7 million, and of this cost, $1 million was billed to Medicaid.
VOTE on

HB 632

A vote was called for on the motion to send HB 632 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried unanimously by voice vote.
HB 603 Representative Bolz presented HB 603, stating this legislation, basically allows school districts who contract school bus transportation services the opportunity, on a one-time basis, to renew the transportation contract with the current contractor for a time period not to exceed five years. He referred to a letter of support for this legislation from the Associate Superintendent of Caldwell School District. Caldwell District spent approximately $35,000 over 1-1/2 years of committee meetings, lawyer's fees, accounting fees and rewriting bid specifications and re-advertising for bids (Attachment 6). Middleton just spent $5,000 on their bid process. Part of the problem is how contracts are written.

Contract costs are usually estimated on normal routes plus supplemental services or they can be based on so much per mile. The State Department of Education does allow for 10-15 years of depreciation, but requires contracts are for five years only. This legislation provides an opportunity to extend out a contract. Another component of this issue is that bus contractors are tied to the communities, and if they go out of business it affects the entire community. This legislation does not prohibit a school district from going through the bid process. A possible downside to this might be that some feel we are taking away the bid process.

PRO Dr. Mike Friend, Executive Director, Idaho Association of School Administrators, spoke in support of HB 603. The majority of school districts are not involved in contract busing. When looking at those who are, they do support HB 603.
PRO Mr. Brent Carpenter, Owner, Brown Bus Company, spoke in support of HB 603 and commended Representative Bolz for his work on this legislation. He responded to questions, stating there are 16-18 contractors operating school buses in Idaho. This number includes the out-of-state contractors. Mr. Carpenter's company provides services for three districts and one charter school in Canyon County, and there are about 4 or 5 contractors who have multiple contracts. The contracts have provisions for adjusting fuel and oil costs based on current markets.
Dr. Bob Haley, Legislative Liaison, State Department of Education, stated that the Department has been working with Representative Bolz on this legislation and they stand in support of HB 603.
MOTION: Representative Bauer made a motion to send HB 603 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote. Representative Kulczyk wished to be recorded as voting "nay".
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 10:17 A.M.




DATE: February 23, 2004
TIME: 9:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representatives Jones and Naccarato
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:04 A.M. with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: The minutes of February 19, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Andersen made a motion to accept the minutes as printed. The motion carried.
RS 13996 Representative Trail made a motion to move RS 13996 to the agenda for Wednesday, February 26, 2004 because changes are still being considered. The motion carried.
RS 14162 Ms. Kris Ellis, Lobbyist representing the Idaho Assisted Living Association, presented RS 14162. She explained the intent of this legislation is to clarify conflicting rules regarding the distribution of medication from bulk bottles in assisted living facilities. She asked that the committee introduce the RS and then have it referred to the Health and Welfare Committee.
MOTION: Representative Rydalch made a motion to introduce RS 14162 and have it referred to the Health and Welfare Committee. The motion carried.
RS 14117 Ms. Kris Ellis, Lobbyist representing te Idaho Assisted Living Association, presented RS 14117. She explained the intent of this Resolution is to develop and propose statute and rule changes that allow an oversight process in assisted living that uses new methodologies and increased efficiencies to assure that facilities have appropriate and timely surveys without dramatic increases to the state general fund. She asked that the committee introduce the RS and refer it to the Health and Welfare Committee.
MOTION: Representative Sayler made a motion to introduce RS 14117 and have it referred to the Health and Welfare Committee. The motion carried.
RS 14172 Representative Block presented RS 14172, stating one of the greatest and noblest gifts we can give Idaho's youth is a college education and to reward them for being drug, alcohol, and tobacco free. Only 47% of Idaho high school graduates go to college while the national average is 75%. Statistics were provided that support the need to provide incentives for students to abstain from use of drugs, alcohol and tobacco, and this legislation is designed to address this issue by offering Category C scholarships. Research shows that if students are deterred from using drugs, alcohol and tobacco until at least age 21, they are less likely to become addicted.

To become eligible for a Category C scholarship, a student must enter into an agreement that, at a minimum, will require that the student agrees to be drug, alcohol, and tobacco free for the entire year, and that the student voluntarily participates in a random drug testing program as outlined by the board of trustees or the governing board of the school. During college they will not be tested, but if convicted for use they will lose their scholarship. These students may also qualify for Category A and B scholarships.

Representative Block stated that there would be no fiscal impact in FY 2005 - FY 2007, but the impact would be $662,600 in FY 2008; $234,500 in FY 2009; $26,900 in FY 2010 and $27,700 in FY 2011. These figures assume that the unspent Category B scholarship funds are carried forward for the exclusive use of Category C scholarships.

MOTION: Representative Nielsen made a motion to introduce RS 14172.
Mr. John Hathaway, Region V Director, Health and Welfare, worked with Representative Block on this legislation. He pointed out that 80-85% of the children in foster care are there because of alcohol and drugs. When talking with disadvantaged youth about this legislation, they were excited and indicated there is really no reason/incentive for them not to use drugs and alcohol. The prevention programs in place don't seem to be having an impact. The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare has 2900 employees and 1600 provide family and child services at a cost of $154 million per year. Mr. Hathaway agreed that we need to try and reach students before they get into high school, because the average age of students using alcohol is 12.9 years of age.
VOTE ON

RS 14172

A vote was called for on the motion to introduce RS 14172. The motion carried by voice vote.
RS 14148C1 Representative Eberle presented RS14148C1, stating this legislation was brought to him by a concerned constituent. It was pointed out that Idaho has taken great steps to ensure students are educated and many laws reflect the belief that children need to be 18 or older before they are given certain privileges and considered adults. Yet, a 16-year old can dropout of school. In a letter received by Representative Eberle, Mr. John Murdock, Idaho Falls, urged raising that age to 18. This legislation proposes a compromise and changes the age to 17. The fiscal impact of this legislation is estimated to be $7.2 million to fund the additional 1.44% support units. It is felt that many students will continue to drop out with parental permission.

When asked about married students with children and how this legislation would impact them, Representative Eberle said he doesn't know.

MOTION: Representative Rydalch made a motion to introduce RS 14148C1. The motion carried by voice vote.
Students from the Bishop Kelly High School government class were introduced.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 9:28 A.M.




DATE: February 24, 2004
TIME: 8:30 A.M.
PLACE: Gold Room
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please note presenters highlighted below and refer to the committee sign-in sheets.
Chairman Schroeder called the joint meeting of the House and Senate Education Committees to order at 8:49 A.M. He introduced Vice Chairman Gannon and Chairman Barraclough and Vice Chairman Lake. Chairman Schroeder assured everyone present that both committees view charter/virtual schools as part of the public school system. He stated there are many financial challenges for all of education this year.

Chairman Barraclough stated he appreciates the opportunity to hear from the Idaho Virtual Academy (IDVA) because better decisions are made the better informed we are. He suggested we need to stop comparing charters and public schools and concentrate on delivering the best education to students.

PRESENTATION: Ms. Kelly Roush, Teacher, IDVA, stated she comes from a traditional school teaching background and has taught for the IDVA for two years. Resources provided to IDVA students and parents include offline materials, online curriculum and teacher support. Students only spend 15-20% of their time online, and the K-12 curriculum is very robust.

Ms. Roush demonstrated the various components of the system: (1) Parents set up a weekly schedule and can look at lesson plans on a daily or weekly basis. There is an advanced preparation screen that advises them on what supplies are needed; (2) Lesson lists provide all of the units for a course and can be used by teachers to assess or focus learning, and by parents to enable them to work with children at different grade levels; (3) IDVA teachers view the progress reports online and see what lessons are started, in the process or completed; (4) Lessons and assessments are viewed to see if students have mastered the skills required before moving on; and (5) Attendance is monitored, and teachers view this information to see how much time is being spent.

The student portion of a lesson on the sense of hearing was shown. Objectives tied to learning were given, key words identified, audio pronunciations for names and scientific terms were available and there were online or offline indicators to identify where students can find lessons and materials. Graphic illustrations showed how the inner ear works.

As new curriculum is developed by K-12 it can be downloaded and Idaho's curriculum can be updated. In a virtual environment, teachers still assess students' skills, drive the learning and are accountable. Parents provide the one on one instruction similar to what classroom aids provide.

PRESENTATION: Mr. David Gencarella, Chairman of the Board of Directors for IDVA, thanked the committees for providing a forum to discuss their program. He stated that prior to accepting the position of Chairman last February, he worked in pharmaceuticals. He stressed that choices are great and one size does not fit all. Around 2000 families have now joined the IDVA.

Mr. Gencarella reviewed IDVA's current situation, stating they don't have a curriculum or teacher problems, but they do have a funding problem. The original charter for IDVA was granted in April 2002 by the Butte School District and the State Department of Education. The original budget proposal indicated a cost of $5,400 per student, and IDVA based their budget on that assumption until February 2003 when they found they were actually being paid $2,600 per student. Tim Hill, State Department of Education, did everything he could to assist them within the parameters of the funding formula. In August the State Board of Education adopted temporary rules to address this issue, but the rules were pulled back in January.

IDVA's need for $5,000 per student is less than the average of $6,800 for public schools and $6,500 for other virtual schools. IDVA is the "most" public of public schools because students can live anywhere and still have access. Students don't have to be the brightest, and they may have special needs. Fifty percent of their students are at the poverty level or below.

A great deal of misinformation about IDVA has been circulated, and Mr. Gencarella pointed out that IDVA is not robbing public schools, they are not the same as homeschooling, and they do use certified teachers. K-12 Company does not sit on the IDVA board, they are constrained by a negotiated contract, they charge $1100 per student and they have invested $50 million in developing their curriculum. Eleven percent of IDVA's students were homeschooled, and 89% of their students will go back into public schools if IDVA shuts down.

Senator Schroeder took a few minutes to discuss Idaho's constitutional separation of powers between the Legislative, Executive and the Judicial branches, stating that the actions of the State Board of Education can't stand. He said the first thing we need to do is allow the IDVA to continue, next have a six member committee determine costs, and then have an Interim Committee look at all virtual offerings in the state and identify code that doesn't fit.
A lengthy discussion followed and key issues centered around:

Number and nature of students leaving the IDVA - Two hundred students left IDVA during the school year and the reasons for leaving were time involved, flexibility and viability of the school.

Federal Funding - IDVA receives no Title I funding because these funds are based on the poverty level of the district and IDVA did not qualify. Dr. Jana Jones stated that IDVA received the state average amount for special education students.

Management of IDVA - IDVA is run by a Board of Directors, they have a parent group and no advisory group. K-12 is a startup, joint venture company and was selected because of their phenomenal program. The IDVA Board hires teachers and administrators, but administrators are employees of K-12 and are paid by K-12. The superintendent is paid $11,000 less than Idaho's average superintendent salary. Administrators and teachers are available 45-60 hours per week.

Funding Formula - Mr. Tim Hill, State Department of Education, provided several reasons why, under the public education funding formula, that IDVA was not eligible for more funding. Administrators did not receive benefits because they were paid by K-12, teachers were paid based on the experience index, estimated funding was based on an 775 students, and public schools' cost per student ranges from $2,000 to $7,000 based on grade level, special needs and many other factors.

Excess Funding - If there was a net savings because IDVA was only funded at $2,600 per student, that money goes into the stabilization fund.

Confidentiality - It was asked whether names and email addresses of IDVA students can be made available. Names can be released, but it was not clear about email addresses. It was suggested that some of the committee members would like to receive names and email addresses of all public school students.

Other Cost Issues - It was stated that disclosures show that a lobbyist was hired by K-12. It is not known who paid for the attorney's involved with the drafting of the temporary rules. A letter from K-12 was received by the IDVA Board stating that the $1.9 million loan they granted is a non-recourse loan.

Chairman Barraclough said after analyzing the testimony, it all comes down to funding. By any criteria, if the amount promised is not received, IDVA will fail. What schools are paid for their actual expenses? What would you recommend to avoid the train wreck? Mr. Gencarella stated the Legislature needs to pass legislation that provides a long-term solution.
Chairman Schroeder closed the meeting by saying we want to make sure we have a virtual experience in Idaho. Chairman Barraclough stated that virtual learning is the wave of the future, and the Legislature need to resolve this issue and stop making comparisons.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, Chairman Schroeder adjourned the meeting at 10:25 A.M.




DATE: February 25, 2004
TIME: 8:30 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representative Eberle
GUESTS: Please note presenters highlighted below and refer to the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 8:36 A.M. with a quorum being present. The committee was updated on the charter school issues and informed that the Governor has proposed charter school legislation that will start in the Senate Education Committee. At the rally yesterday, Chairman Barraclough reminded those present that ten years ago a member of this body, Representative Tilman, had a vision that resulted in the formation of charter schools.
RS13996C2 Representative Ringo presented RS 13996C2 to the committee, stating she has worked closely with the Idaho School Board Association on this legislation. The legislation will provide a short-term solution for the NCLB mandate that school districts hire highly qualified teachers by the 2005-2006 school year. Idaho currently has 290 teachers who are mis-assigned or are consultant specialist. The legislation provides an emergency measure to hire retired teachers or educators, but with strict controls. Contracts would be for no more than three years, and the legislation will sunset in 2007.

It was clarified that teacher's who have received an early retirement bonus will not qualify, and the school districts will use this option once they have advertised a teaching position, but have no highly qualified applicants. A concern was voiced that this should not be limited to teachers, but that all PERSI retirees should be considered.

MOTION: Representative Andersen made a motion to introduce RS13996C2. Representative Lake suggested this legislation should be referred to Human Resources because of the PERSI implications. The motion to introduce RS13996C2 passed by voice vote. Representatives Lake, Kulczyk, and Nielsen wished to be recorded as voting "Nay".
HB740 Representative Boe presented HB 740. A handout was provided outlining kindergarten requirements according to author Robert Fulghum in his book "All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten" and a chart showing what kindergartners are expected to know before first grade under the new Idaho standards (Attachment 1). Unfortunately, many families still think kindergarten is a place to play. Kindergarten is the serious beginning of a child's education. Educators in Representative Boe's district asked her to carry this legislation because children who do not attend kindergarten often struggle throughout school, and this legislation can help them.

According to the State Department of Education (SDE), $2.3 million was spent on reading remediation last year in grades K-3. According to Mr. Tim Hill, SDE, the number of kindergarten children affected would be 940, which would increase state ADA funding by approximately $2.2 million a year. Several cost-benefit studies on early childhood learning estimate that for every dollar spent, $6 is returned.

Representative Boe walked through the legislation, pointing out that changes to the existing language change the age from seven to six on Line 11 and remove the word "no" on Line 22, which will make kindergarten compulsory. Line 25 is amended to add private or parochial, and Line 26 adds "unless otherwise comparably instructed".

In response to questions, Representative Boe indicated that (1) changing the age from seven to six will not increase the numbers dramatically; (2) she feels an outreach program might help but may not reach those who are not sending their children to kindergarten; (3) demographic information was not available, although one area mentioned was Fort Hall; and (4) transportation should not be an issue since most districts run busses for two sessions of kindergarten now.

PRO Ms. Janet-Lee Murphy, KindergartenTeacher representing IEA, spoke in favor of HB 740. She stated that in her nearly 30-year teaching span, she has watched Idaho's public kindergarten program grow from "naptime and milk & cookies in the church basement" to what is proudly described in her district as a "developmental program with academic outcomes". This legislation making kindergarten mandatory is the next logical step in providing the best possible educational opportunity for some of Idaho's youngest learners and provided four reasons for this (Attachment 2). She said she welcomes the Legislature raising the bar, but doesn't see how we can mandate curriculum and not mandate attendance. How can we afford not to support?
PRO Mr. Darryl Jungen, Teacher representing the IEA, spoke in support of HB 740, addressing how children are impacted who do not attend kindergarten. Last year there were two children in his classroom who did not attend kindergarten, and it took a full year of special reading services to get them reading at grade level. He is concerned that we may be denying these children opportunities to explore their potential.
PRO Ms. Sonia Krueger, Teacher representing the IEA, spoke in support of HB 740, stating she has been a teacher for 14 years. She shared stories about three of her students (Attachment 3). Kristina came to school two days a week because she had to stay home and care for three younger siblings. Amy, a student she has this year, has missed 24 days in the first semester alone because she has to go to work with her Dad and is often 30 minutes late when she does attend. Brent's parents are divorced and he is living between two houses. The parents blame each other for his poor attendance.

These children's poor attendance in kindergarten is not going to help them gain the knowledge and experiences necessary for them to be successful in school for years to come and they will lag behind. This legislation sends a strong message to parents to send their children to kindergarten on a regular basis.

PRO Dr. Bob Haley, Legislative Liaison, State Department of Education, spoke in support of HB 740. He said he has seen education in Idaho change dramatically in the last five years. The 15 districts he consults with indicated that there may only be a handful of students not attending kindergarten. Dr. Haley pointed out that when you look at the current year's figures for those not attending kindergarten and add in those students attending private kindergarten there appears to be only 120 students entering first grade who have not attended kindergarten. If this legislation passes, it should actually have a minimal fiscal impact because a support unit cushion was built into the public education budget as proposed by JFAC.
PRO Dr. Mike Friend, Executive Director, Idaho Association of School Administrators, spoke in favor of HB 740, stating his organization recognizes how different kindergarten is today. NCLB brings with it more emphasis on academic success for all students and more accountability for teachers. In a recent conference call with the superintendents, no concerns were expressed. They too believe there is a smaller number of children who are not attending kindergarten. Dr. Friend relayed the fact that the Idaho School Boards Association also supports this legislation.
Ms. Murphy addressed the standards requirements for a kindergartner (Attachment 1), stating that a non-educator may not determine the importance of each of these.

Representative Boe closed by saying remediation is very expensive and teachers can't teach those who don't attend. She was pleased to hear there would be less of a fiscal impact and stressed this is critically important legislation.

MOTION: Representative Nielsen made a motion to hold HB 740 in committee, indicating that mandating a child to leave home at six is very difficult for some children. Where 95% of children are attending kindergarten, it is not worth mandating.
SUBSTITUTEMOTION: Representative Andersen made a substitute motion to send HB 740 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. Several members spoke in opposition to the substitute motion citing concerns about (1) the small percentage of students we are addressing, (2) no performance comparisons being given for the 95% vs. the 5%, (3) no flexibility and may see preschool mandated next; and (4) the situation will probably not change for those who are now being kept home. Those speaking in favor of the substitute motion indicated (1) that children who do not attend kindergarten begin school behind and require a lot of time and resources to bring up to grade level, (2) NCLB brings more pressure to students who are behind as well as added pressure for the teachers, (3) early brain development shows positive results, and we need to use the best science in education; (4) mothers don't always have the resources they need, especially when divorced; (5) if parents feel the child is not ready for school, the school will work with them.
VOTE ON

HB 740

A roll call vote was taken on the substitute motion to send HB 740 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by a 10 to 7 vote. Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Cannon, Garrett, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, and Sayler voted "Aye". Representatives Barraclough, Lake, Rydalch, Bauer, Kulczyk, Nielsen and Bayer voted "Nay".
HB 713 Representative Trail presented HB 713 to the committee, stating this legislation makes major changes to the Promise Scholarship Program, and these changes are that scholarships will be for one year only, colleges may provide a match for the program in the second year, and students may only qualify based on their academic record prior to attending college (Attachment 4). Implementation will be delayed for one year and in working with Ross Borden, Legislative Services, it was determined that the fiscal impact will be neutral (Attachment 5).
Mr. Dan Davenport, Director of Admissions and Financial Aid at the University of Idaho, represented the financial aid administrators across Idaho who are in support of HB 713 and the proposed changes. He pointed out that this scholarship program helps 5,000 new students each year and it is important that the program runs well.

The financial aid officers have worked together to suggest improvements to the program (Attachment 6). Mr. Davenport feels they have kept two of the guiding principles intact, and those are to encourage students to go from high school to college and to provide incentives for students to finish high school with good grades. It was felt that offering more money for the first year of college will affect the number of students enrolling, and for students with high financial need, will help during their first year when they have less access to federal financial aid programs. Administration of the program should be much easier and will allow the colleges and universities to provide more accurate services.

MOTION: Representative Nielsen made a motion to send HB 713 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. It was clarified that universities will not be reporting the number of awards that were matched by the institution because they will not match the scholarship money the first year. Matching would be allowed the second year and not involve state funds. CSI felt this would make them much more competitive and would provide more incentive for students to stay their second year. The only schools currently providing matching funds are ISU, CSI, Albertson and NW Nazarene.

All of the Idaho colleges and universities are represented by Mr. Davenport and are in agreement with the changes.

VOTE ON

HB 713

A vote was called for on the motion to send HB 713 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote. Representatives Rydalch and Bauer wished to be recorded as voting "Nay".
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, Chairman Barraclough adjourned the meeting at 10:05 A.M.




DATE: February 26, 2004
TIME: 8:30 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
Vice Chairman Lake called the meeting to order at 8:32 A.M. with a quorum being present. He explained that Chairman Barraclough was detained, but will assume the Chair in a few minutes.
MINUTES: The minutes of February 24, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Andersen made a motion to accept the minutes as printed. The motion carried by voice vote.
RS14195 Representative Bedke presented RS 14195 to the committee, explaining the legislative intent is for the state board of education and state department of education to develop statewide, research-based goals for students in Idaho who are English Language learners. For a number of years there has been a line item in the public school budget for Limited English Proficient (LEP) funding. Last year $4.4 million was budgeted for the LEP program, and this year's request was for $4.85 million. Districts receive funding based on the number of LEP children in their district.

Despite all the money we are spending there is still a gap in LEP students' proficiency. A State Board of Education subcommittee has been formed to coordinate efforts, look at the best management practices and address how best to spend these resources to ensure we make the mark/close the gap. Representative Bedke mentioned that districts have as many LEP plans as there are districts and some are more successful than others. He cited the LEP programs at Dworshak Elementary School in Burley and the program in American Falls as being very successful. Funding needs to be directed to the most efficient use because we are not showing the progress needed.

MOTION: Representative Kulczyk made a motion to introduce RS 14195 for printing.
Mr. Sam Byrd, Consultant, Commission on Hispanic Education, stated he supports this legislation. Mr. Byrd briefed the committee on past efforts, lawsuits, plans and committees that have tried to address the LEP issue in 1979. This is not a new issue and those involved have been unwilling or unable to close the gap. This is not about students being able to speak English, but it is about academic achievement and all students being held to the same level of accountability.
VOTE ON RS14195 A vote was called for on the motion to introduce RS14195 for printing. The motion carried by voice vote.
HB 728 Senator Keough introduced HB 728 to the committee, explaining that she and Representative Eskridge have worked with the Idaho Association of School Administrators and the Idaho School Boards Association, and they are proposing to amend this legislation by striking the sentence beginning "At the option..." on Lines 12-15.

The technology competency requirement currently exists in rule, but the waiver process is not defined. This legislation will put into law the technology competency requirement, define the waiver process and identify elements of relevancy. Lines 16-26 define the waiver/appeal process and Lines 29-34 clearly delineate the relevancy factors. If teachers are achieving the goals of their curriculum and can use computers to log attendance and access ISIMS, it may not be necessary for them to take the technology competency exam.

Representative Eskridge addressed HB 728, explaining that he has one teacher in his district who is on the verge of retirement and will stay an additional year if the technology competency requirement can be waived. This legislation will help the rural districts that have difficulty recruiting qualified teachers by providing flexibility at the local level.

It was clarified for the committee that the technology competency requirements were implemented in 1997 requiring higher education institutions to add this requirement for graduating teachers. It has since evolved from a 90% requirement to all teachers in the system having to meet the requirements to be recertified. Teachers are not recertified every year, but once every five years.

Representative Kulczyk suggested that a five year sunset clause be added to the legislation. A concern was voiced about lowering the standard with this legislation, and Representative Eskridge said he does not feel it does.
Ms. Robin Nettinga, Idaho Education Association, stated that with the proposed amendments, the IEA supports HB 728. When asked if a 5-year sunset clause is acceptable, she indicated it is.
Dr. Mike Friend, Executive Director, Idaho Association of School Administrators, stated his organization supports HB 728 with the changes. This legislation puts in place the appeal process and the 5-year sunset clause makes sense. Those teachers coming from out-of-state can benefit from this.
Dr. Bob Haley, Legislative Liaison, State Department of Education, said the Department's concerns are addressed with the amendments.
Dr. Cliff Green, Executive Director, Idaho School Boards Association, said his organization supports HB 728 with the amendments. The criteria outlining the waiver process is important.
MOTION: Representative Boe made a motion to send HB 728 to the amending order with committee amendments attached. The amendments are to strike the sentence beginning "At the option..." on Lines 12-15 and to add a 5-year sunset clause.

Representative Jones suggested that the amendments help the bill, but he feels the waiver should only be granted one time and a time certain period set on the waiver. Also on Lines 31-34 the relevancy factors may change from year to year and equipment and technology also change.

Representative Boe said she would be glad to include the proposed amendments proposed by Representative Jones in her motion. Representative Jones will work with Representative Eskridge and Senator Keough on the amendments.

VOTE ON

HB 728

A vote was called for on the motion to send HB 728 to the amending order with committee amendments attached. The motion carried by voice vote.
Chairman Barraclough informed the committee that several pieces of charter school legislation have passed out of the Senate Education Committee. The Attorney General's Office has been asked to present the same information to this committee that was presented to the Senate Education Committee last week.
PRESENTATION: Mr. Terry Coffin, Division Chief, Contracts and Administrative Law Division, stated he would address only charter school laws pertaining to purchasing. In general on charter school law, he indicated that this is like trying to graft on a new system without killing the tree and advised them that they need to say exactly what they mean when drafting legislation. The Attorney General's office has provided more opinions on charter school law the last two-three years than any other legislation. He provided information on 33-5202 (Legislative Intent); 33-5210 (Application of school law - Accountability - Exemption from state rules); 33-601 (Real and personal property - Acquisition, use or disposal of same); and 33-5204 (Nonprofit corporation - Liability - Insurance) highlighting areas of concern (Attachment 1).

On Item 3 of Attachment 1, it clearly outlines procedures to be followed regarding the $25,000 threshold. He has not experienced problems with charter schools regarding this, but has seen some state contracts that didn't comply with the law. Bidders can civilly challenge the contract if schools don't comply. On Item 4 it makes clear that charter schools can be independently sued.

Mr. Coffin said he doesn't feel we need to start over on charter school law, but careful draftsmanship will take time, but this can work; it's important to get it right and it make take more than just this session.

PRESENTATION: Mr. Bart McKnight, Chairman of the Board for Liberty Charter School, spoke to the committee about Liberty Charter. Liberty has had five years of success, and their IRI scores are shown in Attachment 2. Liberty serves average kids, their demographics are much the same as other schools in the district, and they have children on IEPs. They are proud of the progress made and the fact that are able to bring average students up to above average. Liberty has dealt with many negative and positive issues and many of the newspaper articles reflect the problems they have had. Liberty has spent $100,000 since 2001 on legal fees defending the school. This is a situation where one education entity has power over another.
Mr. Bob Henry, Nampa Board of Trustees, was asked to say a few words, and he stated that the problems the Board is having with Liberty are (1) compliance with the charter; and (2) compliance with Idaho Code. Mr. McKnight was asked how Liberty does not comply, and he said they are in compliance.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 10:02 A.M.




DATE: February 27, 2004
TIME: 10:00 A.M. or upon Adjournment
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representatives Jones and Garrett
GUESTS: Please note presenters highlighted below and refer to the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:46 A.M. with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: The minutes of February 25 and 26, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Lake made motions to accept both sets of minutes as written. The motions carried by voice vote.
RS14188C1 Representative Rydalch presented RS14188C1, stating this House Joint Memorial requests that the President of the United States, the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives and Idaho's Congressional delegation vigorously supports and expands the Idaho National Laboratory as it develops a world class multiprogram laboratory. Representative Rydalch explained that INEEL will soon become know as the Idaho National Laboratory. INEEL has gone from 12,000 employees down to 6,000 and this affects the revenue coming to the state.

It is extremely important for states to support federal laboratories. While Representative Rydalch chaired the Federal Laboratory Consortium, it became very clear to her just how much competition there is for these labs. It was pointed out that INEEL has contributed a great deal to Idaho through their collaboration with higher education institutions and their transfer of technology to the private sector. More patents have been received per employee at INEEL than at any other national lab.

MOTION: Representative Cannon moved to introduce RS14188C1 for printing and refer it to the second reading calendar with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote.
RS14185 Representative Rydalch presented RS14185. She explained the purpose of this legislation is to commend the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory for its 55 years of service to Idaho and to the United States of America.
MOTION: Representative Block moved to introduce RS14185 for printing and refer it to the second reading calendar with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote.
SJM108 Representative Jaquet introduced SJM108 stating that this joint memorial is being sent to the President and to Congress to address Idaho's concerns about the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB).

Representative Bedke met with Congressman Mike Simpson, teachers and administrators from his districts and other stakeholders from around the state in July regarding NCLB. Early in the session, another meeting was held in the Senate Pro Tem's Office with representatives from Congressman Simpson's office, the Governor's office, OSBE, SDE, Leadership, Senators, Representatives, superintendents, teachers, IEA, IASA and ISBA and two representatives from the US Department of Education to develop the amendments found in this joint memorial. Idaho is highly dependent on Federal funding, and it is important to make sure NCLB works for Idaho.

Representative Bedke commented that this has been an interesting process, and it is hoped this process can serve as a model. He said he trusts the people who brought these issues to his attention, and he explained that Oakley has 208 students and three of those students failed to make adequate yearly progress; therefore, the whole school was placed on the "needs improvement" list.

This legislation urges Congress to support the four (4) amendments listed below.

(1) Allow determinations of "adequate yearly progress" to be made on the basis of individual student growth from year to year. It was explained that academic growth is occurring, but because it doesn't meet the AYP requirements under NCLB, schools are placed in the "needs improvement" category. This amendment will give states the ability to determine what is adequate growth.

(2) Target options for choice and supplemental services to specific subgroups that fail to make adequate yearly progress rather than to all children in a school. Representative Bedke stated that given the current language in the NCLB Act, all 208 children in Oakley will have the option to move to a neighboring school. He explained that with the advent of ISIMS, tracking the progress of the subgroups will be enhanced.

(3) Provide flexibility and more reasonable rules for English Language Learners .... Representative Bedke explained that the flexibility asked for here in no way lessens the responsibility for non-English speaking student academically, but allows more time for them to become proficient. He provided a copy of an email received from the US Department of Education that addresses new policies providing states with increased flexibility to help English Language Learners (Attachment 1). He stated with these new policies, many of the issues Idaho raised have gone away.

(4) Permit states to identify, for school improvement only, those schools that fail to meet adequate yearly progress for two consecutive years in the same subject and for the same subgroup. It was explained that this amendment should reset the clock if in the second year the students are proficient.

When asked why long term Federal funding wasn't included as a separate amendment, Representative Bedke explained that Idaho's Federal funding is at an all time high, and the stakeholders didn't feel asking for more money sends a positive message. The four amendments included in the memorial were ones that most participants could agree upon. Concerns were voiced about the constitutionality of the NCLB Act and about dividing students into subgroups. In regards to subgroups it was pointed out that without grouping students it is impossible to address individual needs, and if data isn't disaggregated it is difficult to direct resources where needed.

PRO Dr. Phil Kelly, Professor of Education and Policy, Boise State University, spoke in support of SJM 108. He pointed out that measuring student growth is good, and subgroups are integral and can't be translated into different expectations/proficiency levels for kids. The ISAT may now have to be amended to deal with measuring student growth rather than AYP. Idaho was mandated to change the ISAT from the Assessment and Accountability Committee's approach to one that met the US Department of Education's requirements.
PRO Mr. Jim Shackelford, Executive Director, Idaho Education Association, stated his organization supports SJM 108. He thanked all the parties involved in this legislation and said this is a very constructive way to approach NCLB. While other states are asking for waivers or pulling out, Idaho has rolled up its sleeves. The two things teachers talk about across the state are (1) change this to look at how students do individually and (2) provide flexibility regarding ELL/LEP students without removing accountability. These items will allow the state to devote special resources to ensure competency.
PRO Dr. Mike Friend, Executive Director, Idaho Association of School Administrators, spoke in support of SJM 108 and indicated that this legislation is a good illustration of what can happen when people sit down together. When addressing the benefits of measuring student growth, he stressed that we must be accountable to stretch this to high achieving students too. When asked about gifted and talented students being left behind and incorporating virtual learning into the brick and mortar schools to provide opportunities for the gifted and talented students, Dr. Friend said virtual learning is a possibility. School administrators must ensure AP and GT programs are not cut.
MOTION: Representative Trail made a motion to send SJM 108 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote. Representatives Kulczyk and Eberle wished to be recorded as voting "Nay".
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, Chairman Barraclough adjourned the meeting at 11:20 A.M.




DATE: March 1, 2004
TIME: 8:30 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail (Bennett), Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representatives Block and Naccarato. Representative Bennett will be sitting in for Representative Trail for several days.
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 8:33 A.M. with a quorum being present. Dr. Earl Bennett was introduced. He explained he will be sitting in for Representative Trail this week. Dr. Bennett is a retired Dean from the University of Idaho.
HB 603 Representative Bolz presented HB 603 to the committee. He explained that after this bill received a DO PASS recommendation from the committee last week, some concerns surfaced. To clear the air and address the concerns regarding the JLOC report and the Boise School District bus contract issues, he chose to bring the bill back to the committee. He pointed out that the report from the Office of Performance and Evaluations made recommendations for districts who do not contract their transportation as well as those who do.
MOTION: Representative Rydalch moved to send HB 603 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. Mr. Brent Carpenter, Brown Bus Company and Dr. Mike Friend, Executive Director, Idaho Association of School Administrators both restated their support for this legislation. Representative Stevenson spoke in support of HB 603, stating the two school districts in his legislative district deal with two private bus companies. These companies need assurance that their contracts can be extended. It was pointed out that it is bad to avoid making laws because of one bad situation, and this legislation is not the vehicle to address saving transportation costs. This legislation gives assurance to bidders, and all but 7 districts are following the Department's contract format.

A vote was called for on the motion to sent HB 603 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote. Representative Kulczyk wished to be recorded as voting "Nay".

S 1255 Senator Malepeai introduced S 1255, stating this bill comes from the State Department of Education and only changes three words. The bill will increase the distribution of funds to public schools for their driver education programs from $110 to $125 per student enrolled in the course. The increase helps offset the average 59% overall increase for the cost of vehicle fuel, oil, maintenance, insurance and training materials. This reimbursement increase to schools may reduce the growth of student fees paid by families for driver education, which have increased 145% since 1995.

The funds are dedicated funds and are generated by driver licensing fees. The dedicated fund balance, after 2004 expenses, will be around $2 million. This legislation should not cause an increase in license fees.

MOTION: Representative Andersen moved to send S 1255 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. A question was asked about fees for private driving schools, and Ms. Beth Weaver, State Department of Education, stated that the Department does not gather information from all private schools, but it is estimated that average private driving school fees are $275 and fees for schools are $77.

A vote was called for on the motion to send S 1255 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote. Representatives Kulczyk and Bauer wished to be recorded as voting "Nay".

HB 750 Representative Eberle presented HB 750 to the committee. He said he did a lot of thinking about this legislation over the weekend and is concerned about not knowing the real fiscal impact. It is difficult to determine the dropout rate because many who dropout have their parent's consent. He voiced a concern that most of these students will not pass the ISAT. He suggested that amendments are needed to provide a waiver for those students who complete their high school requirements and for those who are home schooled.
PRO Dr. Mike Friend, Executive Director, Idaho Association of School Administrators, spoke in support of HB 750. It has been a long time since Idaho has considered compulsory attendance at the end of public school. Support for this legislation centers around NCLB requirements and to decrease the dropout rate. Most children will be 16 when they take the ISAT. Students need incentives for completing school.
CON Mr. Barry Peters, Attorney for the Coalition of Home Educators, spoke in opposition to HB 750. He stated that this legislation has a wonderful, laudable goal, but it is questionable whether this bill will actually help accomplish this goal. Mr. Peters provided statistical data from the National Center for Education Statistics website that indicates by state the dropout rates and provides the compulsory age for each state (Attachment 1). In determining the median dropout rates for 1998-1999 and 1999-2000, he found that in states where the compulsory age is 16, the dropout rate is 4.2%; 4.9% at 17 and 5.0% at 18. Statistically it appears the opposite goal is achieved by raising the compulsory age.

A comment was made that these statistics do not seem to correspond with other reports, and Mr. Peters said he is looking at the median rates only. Mr. Peters did not have statistics for how many of these students went on to get their GEDs.

CON Mrs. Res Peters, Eagle representing herself, stated she has taught more than 3,000 students in elementary and secondary schools and has found that (1) students who want to dropout at 16 have had this mind set for a number of years; (2) negative peer pressure is prevalent and contributes to school dropouts; and (3) in schools potential dropouts absorb the resources and cause a negative impact on other students. Out of 3,000 students she found one exception. Mrs. Peters said entering the workforce and facing reality seems to be the best solution for many of these students. Representative Bennett stated that Genesee High School has no dropouts, and he wonders about the emphasis put on "at risk" students. Mrs. Peters said she feels a lot of emphasis is placed on these students, but they have mentally dropped out way before they physically dropout.
Representative Barraclough, co-sponsor of HB 750, stated this is a difficult bill. He explained he voted against the legislation that mandates children attend kindergarten because it dealt with such a small number of children. In light of NCLB, accountability issues and how dropping out affects students this is a serious issue. This legislation may be premature, but at most it will focus concerns. The issue of the fiscal impact was brought up, and it was asked under what rock we'll find funds. Mr. Hill clarified the fiscal impact given here is based on an estimated 5,900 additional support units, and the fiscal impact does not assume students will move to alternative schools.
MOTION: Representative Kulczyk moved to hold HB 750 in committee, stating it may help some but hurt others. The bill does not address those students who complete high school requirements by age 16. Representative Sayler stressed that it is our moral and constitutional duty to keep students in school regardless of cost. A vote was called for on the motion to hold HB 750 in committee. The motion carried by voice vote.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 9:30 A.M.




DATE: March 2, 2004
TIME: 8:30 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail (Bennett), Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

.Representatives Garrett and Kulczyk
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 8:35 A.M. with a quorum being present. Representative Bennett reported that Representative Trail's angiogram showed no blockage, and he will return on Monday.
MINUTES: The minutes of February 27 were reviewed. Representative Naccarato moved to accept the minutes as written. The motion carried by voice vote.
PRESENTATION: Dr. Richard Bowen, President, Idaho State University (ISU), was introduced by Chairman Barraclough. Dr. Bowen has been at Idaho State University for 19 years and was praised for his strong pitch for ISU programs and for appreciating the funding he has received.

Dr. Bowen referred to the brochure entitled Idaho State University Campus Profile (Attachment 1) and indicated that enrollment at ISU is increasing about 2% per year, 66% of their students are full time and 34% are part-time students. ISU has a community college function as well as that of a 4-year institution. They have four specific functions: (1) post-secondary vocational; (2) general curriculum; (3) health and sciences; and (4) graduate & research. ISU has a large number of students attending right out of high school, the majority of the population is white (non-Hispanic) and 92% of their students are Idaho residents. Two percent of their students are from foreign countries. Majors, graduation rates and GPA's are also given in Attachment 1.

Dr. Bowen pointed out that ISU has a lower rate per credit hour than it did 10 years ago. In 2003, about two-thirds (8,500) of ISU students borrowed an average of $5,000 per year and will leave college with a considerable debt load.

Dr. Bowen mentioned that the appropriation bill for higher education may be voted on today. He said he appreciates the salary and fringe benefits increase, but he was surprised when he was informed that these increases may have to come from student fees. He said if this is the case,

ISU will have to go back for an additional 2% student fee increase, raising the student fee increase to about 10%. Student fees can be increased if they are not used for instructional staff. Dr. Bowen pointed out that soon everything that can legally be supported by students fees will be exhausted. The matriculation fees are set in statute for ISU, BSU, Lewis-Clark State College and constitutionally for the University of Idaho. ISU has received increases of about $10 million from Federal Congress and grants and contracts continue to expand.

Dr. Bowen responded to the following:

(1) Cooperation/coordination efforts with the new presidents at BSU and UI: Cooperation among the institutions is very important. About 19 years ago, the State Board of Education assigned an emphasis for each institution. With the population growth in the Treasure Valley, ISU feels the need to expand some of its programs to this area. With the issues surrounding the University Place, resentment has developed and a minority of the Board believes missions may change. ISU is just working through the process.

(2) Issues with American Indian students not taking enough advantage of scholarship and not staying in school: Dr. Bowen said he is meeting with a teacher at Fort Hall. The instructor is working to develop particular programs of interest for these students, and Dr. Bowen feels they are making better progress. They need help from inside the community. It is possible this teacher may be interested in a part-time position at ISU.

(3) ISU's participation in the Idaho Falls University Place: There are 3,000 students enrolled. A lab and classrooms were built on a site owned by the University of Idaho Foundation with funding from grants and contracts and very little state appropriated dollars. Students can take courses from University of Idaho, Idaho State University and BYU-Idaho. A few BSU courses are offered. Student credits are recorded on a transcript, and students choose where they wish to receive their degree.

(4) Promise Scholarship legislation that proposes awarding $500 per semester for the first year only, and are colleges and universities in sync with this change: Dr. Bowen was concerned when he heard that it had been represented in this committee that ISU was recommending the changes. He is not recommending the changes.

(5) Attrition rates and is it better to spread the scholarship over a two year period: The second inducement of scholarship funds does affect attrition, but it may be possible for ISU to give the matching funds the second year. This legislation may have more of an impact on those schools that do not provide matching funds.

(6) Funding sources for ISU: About 32-33% of their funding comes from the state, 18% from students and the remainder from grants, contracts and business. He said the decline in state funding is a national trend, and the University of Virginia receives only 8% of its funding from the state.

(7) Impact of BYU-Idaho going to a four-year institution: BYU-Idaho has asked for help from the other four-year institutions in the state in developing their curriculum in an effort not to duplicate programs. The BYU-Idaho President informed him up front that they are primarily targeting LDS students nationwide and worldwide. He is hoping the relationships formed will mean that graduate students come to ISU.

(8) Computer technology for teach math: ISU is participating in this program, but has found it cannot work exclusively because students learn differently. A logical application for computer learning seems to be foreign languages.

(9) Impact of budget constraints on attracting and retaining faculty: Faculty members are hanging in there, but their patience is growing thinner and thinner. Morale is becoming a problem because they are not being rewarded for the work they do. ISU is not having an extremely difficult time attracting faculty at this time, but many may lose confidence.

Chairman Barraclough thanked Dr. Bowen for his presentation.

RS 14230C1 Representative Block presented RS 14230C1 to the committee. She explained that since Mr. Hathaway, Region V Director, Department of Health and Welfare, was here and RS 14172 was presented, several groups have given her new ideas about this legislation. She said the first RS was good, but this one is better.

This legislation proposes no changes to the Category A and B scholarships, but adds two new categories of scholarships: (1) Category C and (2) a Drug, Alcohol and Tobacco Free Category. She indicated that reporting for this category can be accomplished through the new ISIMS program, and this category of scholarships will be optional for school districts.

It was explained that the fiscal impact for Category C scholarships will increase starting in FY 2006. In 2004, ninth grade students will be eligible to begin earning one semester's use of the drug, alcohol and tobacco free scholarship if they remain drug, alcohol and tobacco free that year. There will be no fiscal impact for the drug, alcohol and tobacco free scholarship until FY 2009.

Representative Block stated that "the solution to poverty is education, and a happy, productive life results by being drug, alcohol and tobacco free".

In response to questions, the following was clarified.

  1. The current drug testing for athletics and extra curricular activities can be used to determine if students are drug, alcohol and tobacco free.
  2. Students receive one semester of scholarship funds for each year they are drug, alcohol and tobacco free. If they do goof up, they will loose a semester of eligibility that year. Once they are eligible for the scholarship they can only lose it by being convicted on drug or alcohol infractions.
  3. The scholarship was structured to start with the 2004 freshmen to make the fiscal impact more doable since the Category C scholarship requires that students maintain a 2.5 GPA and will begin in FY 2006.
  4. In order to keep this legislation consistent with the Category A and B scholarship criteria, the ISAT was not incorporated for eligibility.
  5. This legislation doesn't mean that Promise Scholarship recipients have problems, but does allow Category A & B recipients to also qualify for drug, alcohol and tobacco free scholarships.
  6. Dr. Randy Thompson is the person who said school districts could track this information using ISIMS. He indicated this would be simple to add this capability.
MOTION: Representative Boe moved to introduce RS 14230C1 for printing, stating this idea has merit and warrants further discussion. The motion carried by voice vote.
Mr. Marty Peterson, University of Idaho, addressed the possibility that the financial aid director from the University of Idaho had misrepresented Idaho State University. Based on the information gathered at the meeting with all of the financial aid directors, is was assumed from ISU's input that they supported the changes proposed in HB 713. Dr. Bowen does not support these changes; therefore, Idaho State University does not support HB 713.

A concern was voiced that the policy makers were not involved, and Mr. Peterson assured the committee that most of the financial aid directors had conferred with their Presidents. When asked about the University of Idaho not matching the Promise Scholarship funds, Mr. Peterson said this would be more likely if their budget gets on better footing. The University of Idaho provides more financial aid than the other institutions, but much of it is dedicated and there is not a lot of flexibility. They have 39 merit scholars attending the university, and they have focused on individuals at this level.

Ms. Connie Richey, lobbyist for Idaho State University, voiced student concerns about student fee increases being used for the 2% faculty raises. She said raising student fees creates a real burden on students, especially when most are incurring high levels of debt already. The students ask that the legislators consider not voting for the higher education appropriations bill. When asked if it is better to spread the Promise Scholarship money over a two-year period or award it all the first year, Ms. Richey said from her perspective it is better to spread it over two years.
MOTION: Representative Lake stated his concerns about HB 713 and made a motion to bring it back to the committee. The motion carried by voice vote. Representatives Bennett and Naccarato wished to be recorded as voting "Nay".
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 9:55 A.M.




DATE: March 3, 2004
TIME: 8:00 A.M.
PLACE: Gold Room
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail (Bennett), Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representative Kulczyk
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the Joint House and Senate Education meeting to order at 8:05 A.M. with a quorum being present. He welcomed everyone and said he appreciates their attendance and the cooperation of those involved with education.
PREPARATION: Dr. Robert Barr, Boise State University, indicated he is making his annual pilgrimage to present the annual Idaho Reading Initiative (IRI) Report prepared by the Center for School Improvement and Policy Studies, College of Education, Boise State University. Dr. Barr emphasized that there is an avalanche of research that confirms the enormous importance of reading and how essential it is for children to learn to read early and well.

Without reading skills students can't do their school work, their risk of failure increases and they are more likely to drop out of school. When an illiterate teenager drops out of school, they are no more successful in society than they were in school, and many are unemployed, underemployed or unemployable. Sixty percent of the men and women in our prisons are illiterate. Reading is incredibly complex and becomes increasingly sophisticated as a child grows older.

Dr. Barr commended the Legislature for passing the IRI. This legislation was bold, visionary and ahead of its time. Idaho is certainly ahead of all other states and will be prepared for No Child Left Behind. The IRI has become a model for the Nation and is the envy of all of the other states.

The IRI is on target because the test is quick and effective, assessments are given three times a year in K-3, and teachers receive feedback within two weeks which helps them focus on student needs. Idaho is documenting continuous improvement and documenting teacher preparation and student achievement. Ninety percent of Idaho teachers have received additional training through the Idaho Reading Academy, and first grade achievement scores increased by 8 percent.

Dr. Barr mentioned that Senator Schroeder asked last year that his report show how minority and low socio-economic students in Idaho are doing. The Center worked with various stakeholders, and this year's report does focus on reading as it relates to minority and low socio-economic students. Dr. Barr recognized those who helped make this report possible, and they are Stacey Joyner, William Parrett, Sam Byrd, Terry Boom, Jesus De Leon, Mari De Leon, Heresa Harrison and Teri Wagner (Attachment 1).

Referring to page 5 of the report, he pointed out that in 1999, 17,000 Idaho K-3 students were reading below grade level and today, 9,503 students are reading below grade level. The percentage of children reading at grade level has increased from 49% in 2000 to 59% in 2003. The challenge is to bring to grade level the 13% who remain below.

Page 7 describes the changing demographics in Idaho.

  • The overall population growth in Idaho was 3.2% during 2000-2002 while the Hispanic population increased by 10.6%.
  • In Idaho, more than 15% of children less than five years of age are Hispanic.
  • Hispanics make up approximately 11% of the almost 260,000 K-12th grade student body.
  • While the percentage of public school students living in poverty declined in Idaho during the last half of the 1990s, more than 50 of the state's 115 school districts showed an increase.
  • One of every eight school-age children in Idaho was living in poverty at the end of the last decade, and that number has increased in the last three years.


Comparisons of IRI scores for the ethnic categories and selected learning categories are provided on Pages 8 and 9 of Attachment 1. Poor and minority students arrive at school ill-prepared, but they are arriving slightly improved when compared to 2002 and 2001. A comparison of Fall 2001 and Fall 2003 reading level percentages for Native American and Hispanic students shows significant growth in the numbers of students reading at grade level and a larger increase than White students. The reading achievement gap is being narrowed for Native American, Hispanic, LEP, migrant and Title I students and this represents a significant success story for many Idaho schools.

Dr. Barr emphasized that there is a greater drop in achievement among the poor and minority students during the summer months. During the school year nutritional meals are provided for many of these children. Summers have a debilitating effect on these children.

Two success stories are highlighted on pages 10 and 11. Sacajawea Elementary in the Caldwell School District has been successful in raising reading scores by increasing learning time and the cooperative efforts of parents, teachers and administrators. Lapwai Elementary has shown noteworthy gains in reading programs by introducing all-day kindergarten, connecting culturally with students, families and the community, aligning curriculum and instruction and targeting professional development.

Policy recommendations are provided on pages 12 - 15 from the Idaho Tribal-Latino Caucus Summit, the International Reading Association and the Boise State University Center for School Improvement and Policy Studies.

In Dr. Barr's closing remarks, he said that if we want to continue to have poor and minority children reading at grade level, we should start as early as possible. The finest investment of money would be to invest in all day kindergarten for poor and minority students, extra instruction time, summer support programs, professional development of teachers and redefining the English language learners. Native American and Hispanic students are some of our finest gifted and talented students.

Several committee members thanked Dr. Barr for his dedication to this project and his service to Idaho and asked that he continue to "hold their feet to the fire". It was pointed out that this program costs us an absolute pittance and is highly successful.

In response to a question from Senator Schroeder about Idaho embarking on a new certification program where applicants simply pass a computerized test and are placed in the classroom, Dr. Barr stated he was not in support of this. He said he worries now whether the colleges and universities are doing as much as they should to train teachers because of the complexity of teaching reading. Research shows that if students have an ineffective teacher for one year it takes two years for them to catch up. Teachers in K-2 are most important, and if they are highly trained and effective it will improve all of the education system. Regarding the cut in funding for the IRI, Dr. Barr said we need to make certain we have adequate funding to focus attention on those with the greatest need. Funding needs to be restored to the original level.

Dr. Randy Thompson, Academic Affairs Officer, Office of the State Board of Education (OSBE), stated that Idaho's current certification process allows for the hiring of consultant specialists, and Idaho now has 200 specialists. To meet the highly qualified teacher requirements set forth by the US Department of Education, it was determined that Idaho needs to develop a new certification process, and we won't be able to use consultant specialists. Idaho's Most, chaired by Mr. Jim Hammond, came up with three alternate certification routes to identify tools that will make the requirements work in rural Idaho. A number of states have internship programs that research shows are comparable to classroom instruction.

The OSBE, through rule, accepted the "Passport to Teaching" certification offered by the American Board for Certification of Teacher Excellence (ABCTE) as a new route to teacher certification. Dr. Thompson introduced Dr. Kathleen Madigan, President of the ABCTE, stating that she has been a regular and special education classroom teacher, principal, college professor, curriculum coordinator and research project director (Attachment 2).

Before Dr. Madigan began her presentation, Representative Barraclough stated that the challenge in education is to protect the excellence and look at ways we can make it better. We need to look at the experience and education of those who may want to take advantage of this alternate certification route. This program provides an alternative or a supplement, not a replacement.
PRESENTATION: Dr. Kathleen Madigan, President of the American Board for Certification of Teacher Excellence, began her presentation by clarifying the question asked previously about the ABCTE applicants just passing a computerized test and being placed in the classroom. She said this seems to be the rhetoric that has flowed into the political arena. She asked that they back up and see what ABCTE is really trying to do.

The Passport to Teaching certification is a career pathway for professional individuals interested in teaching who hold a Bachelor's Degree or higher. ABCTE has two models of certification: process based and standards based. Idaho will be using the standards based model that is based on individual assessment. They offer two levels of certification: Elementary (K-6), English & Math (6-12) and the Master Teacher for existing teachers. To earn the Passport to Teaching certification, candidates will:

  • Submit an application; official college transcripts; and an FBI records check (includes fingerprinting) to the American Board;
  • Complete the candidate self-assessment and design and individual learning plan with the support of an American Board advisor; and
  • Prepare and register for the certification examinations.


Dr. Madigan pointed out that (1) a bi-partisan group developed computer-based assessments of rigorous standards in subject areas and professional teaching knowledge that require a maximum level of competency; (2) computer based exams and virtual assessments are used in many fields, i.e. medical, military, etc.; (3) through simulations and interactive video and audio segments, candidates will be asked to assess specific situations and skills and respond accordingly; (4) forty percent of the candidates have advanced degrees, the average age is 36 and 50% are men; (5) partnerships are being created for ongoing support, and mentoring can be provided through virtual technology; (6) the U.S. Department of Education will follow the candidates; and (7) there are no studies showing that if students go through the College of Education they are better prepared. Twenty of the top education colleges do not teach classroom management.

Pennsylvania still accepts ABCTE certification and 12 other states are in various stages of accepting. A five-year, $35 million grant was awarded to ABCTE by the U.S. Department of Education to expand the number of academic areas for which it offers certification and develop a Master Teacher certificate that would be similar to what the National Board of Certification offers now.

A lengthy discussion followed and Dr. Madigan and Dr. Thompson provided the following information in response to questions and concerns:

  • ABCTE began recruiting two years ago, and they have not certified any teachers to date.
  • ABCTE was founded by the Education Leaders Council and the National Council on Teacher Qualiity. They are a non-profit organization and through a series of grants have moved beyond their initial charge. Dr. Madigan did not meet Ms. McGee until yesterday.
  • Applicants will be observed through interviews, resumes and how they respond to simulations.
  • Pennsylvania is adding a one-year internship to their certification process.
  • Generally, it will take six months to a year to become certified, and the people who are applying are people who truly want to teach.
  • Teaching methods will cover facilitating learning, cooperative learning and explicit learning.
  • Idaho Consultant Specialists are being replaced to meet the highly qualified requirements through NCLB.
  • The American Board Passport Certification costs $500, not including a fee for background checks. The fee includes the candidate self-assessment, advising services and the cost for taking two computer-based examinations.
  • Face to face or video mentoring can be provided for candidates.


Senator Noh voiced a concern that OSBE and IACE have both given their seal of approval to an organization that hasn't certified any individuals. When Chairman Barraclough asked Senator Schroeder for his closing remarks, Senator Schroeder said, "We've had a good session today, and I just want to make one statement. From my perspective, I'm becoming increasingly frustrated by the constant progression of federal folks who regard us as some backward state ripe for exploitation. And the Judases of Idaho are willing to sell us out for an "atta boy" and a bag of gold".

ADJOURN: Chairman Barraclough adjourned the meeting at 10:00 A.M.




DATE: March 4, 2004
TIME: 8:30 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 8:36 A.M. with a quorum being present. He thanked the committee for the professional way they ask questions, especially in the joint meetings. We do not want to stifle public input. The comments made yesterday in the joint meeting went further than they should have.

He informed the committee that the Governor's charter school legislation has been drafted. Vice Chairman Lake and Representative Jones both agreed it should be made available to the members since it has been released to the press.

HB 787 Representative Jaquet introduced HB 787. She explained that Sam Byrd will do the actual presentation. She pointed out that both the State Department of Education (SDE) and the Office of the State Board of Education (OSBE) have been involved in developing this legislation. Some of the districts have plans with measurable objectives, but this legislation will help coordinate the plans and set research-based goals for students who are English language learners. She stressed the importance of closing the gaps in learning for these students and providing focus and measuring growth.
Representative Bedke added that coupled with the efforts of the OSBE subcommittee, this legislation can help refocus our efforts on this group of kids and direct the $4.85 million more effectively.
PRO Mr. Sam Byrd, Board of Directors, Council on Hispanic Education, stood in support of HB 787. He stressed the importance of this legislation because 60% of Latino students are scoring below grade level and 27-40% of are dropping out. In 1995 the Legislature appropriated $1 million to help these children and that amount has grown to the $4.85 million for FY 2005. He and his community believe English is the key to success.

The need to bring accountability to the millions appropriated was emphasized. It is important for these students to meet the proficiency levels, but they must also understand the subject content . According to research, students should not be pulled out of their regular classes to learn English, and 70% of the programs being used in Idaho do pull children out of their regular classes. Mr. Byrd referred to the 90-90-90 schools where 90% of the students are low income, 90% are Latino and they have a 90% achievement rate.

Mr. Byrd indicated that we have no statewide plan, but we do have a statewide problem. This is important legislation because it ensure the future for Latinos and other non-English students. We need to do everything possible to ensure these students can be held at the same level of accountability, and we need to use the funds in the wisest fashion as we work to close the gap.

PRO Representative Martinez spoke in support of HB 787 and stated he will be serving on the OSBE subcommittee. It is important to refocus on how we best address this program and to look at model programs that are working.
In response to a question about using the two successful programs at Sacajawea and Lapwai schools, Dr. Byrd cautioned that we need proof these are working, and the true test is if they are closing the gap. When asked about schools that have 99 non-English speaking students with 26 different languages spoken, Dr. Byrd said clearly this legislation represents Russians, Vietnamese, Romanians, Native Americans and all other limited English speaking students. He said all deserve an equal opportunity, and it may be necessary to come back for additional resources. When asked if this legislation addressed migrant students, it was pointed out that only 30% of these children are migrant, and by design we must improve the system for all. A member suggested that including and involving parents is critical.
MOTION:





VOTE:

Representative Cannon moved to send HB 787 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. Representative Kulczyk stated he has a problem with the language on lines 14-15 because we need to fix the problem, but not do another study. Representative Bedke explained that he questioned this language, but learned that it was included because of a 1983 lawsuit. It was explained that 100 of the 114 school districts do have plans and this should not be a sticky point nor should it be a "deal breaker".

A vote was called for on the motion to send HB 787 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote.

Before S 1323 was presented, it was pointed out by the Chairman and the Vice Chairman that amendments to this legislation are needed. The sponsors are in agreement.
S 1323 Dr. Cliff Green, Executive Director, Idaho School Boards Association, spoke in support of S 1323. He stated that the school trustees voted last November to support a resolution to remove the waiver for insulin dependent bus drivers. He explained that in 2000, Representative Black brought legislation that provided for a waiver for diabetics.
PRO Mr. Brian Jullian, Attorney, stated that a large portion of his practice deals with school districts. Mr. Jullian provided handouts including a Federal Register notice announcing that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has decided to issue exemptions to certain insulin-using diabetic drivers of commercial motor vehicles from the diabetes mellitus prohibitions contained in the current regulations. He also provided copies of United States Code, Chapter 313, Commercial Motor Vehicle Operations (Attachment 1). The waiver for allowing diabetics to get a drivers license is very specific. Idaho Code 33-1509 provides for a waiver from the Federal requirements. This waiver requires that school board trustees must weigh medical evidence, and it is not fair to place this burden on the trustees. By removing this waiver it forces everyone to abide by the Federal regulations and addresses a safety issue. The new Federal waiver provision was just put in place 2-1/2 months ago and no waivers have been processed to date.

A discussion followed and Representative Bayer suggested that on Line 25 the language can be changed to reflect this is "in the discretion of a physician" rather than the school board trustees and leave the waiver. Respectfully, Mr. Jullian said that the district courts have ignored this and employees are suing under the Disabled Americans Act anytime they are not selected. Some doctors will not sign the waiver as a matter of safety.

Representative Bennett asked how many bus drivers we are talking about, and Mr. Jullian said he feels the number is minimal.

Representative Jones referred to the amendments brought by Mr. Rod McKnight, State Department of Education, in 1993. A form was provided to all doctors to fill out, and they know what to do to provide a medical card. He said if we go back to the standard form of this legislation, we go back to where we need to be.

Representative Cannon said he has a problem with this legislation the way it is written because he has a son who is diabetic. He feels his son's physical skills are better than those of other drivers.

PRO Ms. Karlette Merrick, Trustee, Bruneau-Grandview School District, spoke in support of S 1323. She said her concern is that she does not feel qualified to make medical decisions. She had consulted with two health care providers. One, whose son was diabetic and a long-haul driver, said he would not condone a waiver because of an incident that happened to his son. The other health care provider said he would condone the waiver (Attachment 2).
PRO Mrs. Dolcie Roberts, Parent of Nine Children, spoke in support of

S 1323. She has eight children riding school buses. In her experience working for the police department in Idaho Falls, she encountered several incidents with diabetics being in accidents when they had hypoglycemic or hyperglycemic reactions. This issue comes down to safety for children.

Mr. Fred Riggers, Nez Perce, spoke as a long-term diabetic who has used an insulin pump for 24 years. He provided a picture from an accident he had with his tractor when he passed out. He said he is not sure if he is for or against this legislation, but he knows a number of diabetics who drive school buses or did drive them.
CON Ms. Stacy Beeles, CFO, representing the American Diabetes Association, spoke in opposition of S 1323. She is a small business owner and has Type 1 diabetes. She said she checks her blood frequently and with the help of her doctor and her medical team she knows how to detect if she is having problems. She carries fast acting glucose tablets, and she has to think for her pancreas. She asked not to be discriminated against.
CON Ms. Toni Sutton, Area Director, American Diabetes Association (ADA), urged the members to vote against S 1323 (Attachment 3). She said she represents 84,000 people with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. In 2000 she worked with Representative Black on the waiver. The legislation says at the discretion of the board of trustees. The school board trustees and the doctors can ask questions. The ADA recommends yearly eye exams, but not everyone follows their recommendation. ADA is not asking that all diabetics be allowed to drive a school bus, because not all of them are good drivers. Thirty-two states have waivers for intrastate bus drivers.
Representative Ellsworth addressed this legislation stating that her son is a diabetic. Until he was diagnosed she said her impression of diabetes was based on a 30-year old standard. She requested that the committee allow for the amendments.
MOTION: Representative Lake moved to hold S 1323 for time certain until Monday, March 8 to allow the committee time to look at the amendments before a decision is made. Representative Rydalch said she won't sign-off on this unless the American Diabetes Association supports it. She said this is controversial and on the verge of being discriminatory.
SUBSTITUTE MOTION: Representative Kulczyk made a substitute motion to refer S 1323 to the Transportation Committee because it is not a proper bill for this committee. Representative Jones debated against the substitute motion because the 2000 waiver went through the Transportation Committee without the Education Committee getting a chance to look at it. A vote was called for on the motion, and the motion failed.
VOTE ON ORIGINAL MOTION: A vote was called for on the original motion. The motion carried by voice vote.
ADJOURN: The meeting was adjourned at 10:02 A.M.




DATE: March 5, 2004
TIME: 8:30 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail (Bennett), Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 8:35 A.M. with a quorum being present. Representative Garrett introduced Ali Ishaq, Student Body President, Boise State University.
MINUTES: The minutes of March 3, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Bennett made a motion to accept the minutes as written. The motion carried.
PRESENTATION: Mr. Peter Morrill, General Manager, and Bruce Reichert, Executive Producer, Idaho Public Television, gave an very informative presentation. IdahoPTV helps children be ready to learn, provides a window to the world and delivers service into the home, free!

Public television in Idaho is licensed to the State Board of Education and began in 1965 as KUID-TV, Moscow. In 1971, it was expanded to southwest and southeast Idaho. Currently there are 349 PTV stations nationwide, all are locally owned and all are non-profit.

IdahoPTV serves 97% of Idaho, and more than 285,000 people watch this station every week. IdahoPTV has 5 transmitters, 34 repeaters and 5 digital transmitters throughout Idaho. IdahoPTV Learn cable channel is available in Lewiston, Moscow and the Treasure Valley. The IdahoPTV website contains a bucket of educational information that includes video streaming.

Mr. Morrill addressed their recent upgrade efforts, stating they completed the first phase of digital upgrades on time and are now working on the second phase of upgrades. This is going much slower because of reduced funding. There next challenge will be to fund the equipment upgrades at the BSU and ISU studios.

The FY 2004 operating budget was $6.4 million with 63.01% of their funding coming from private contributions, 23.65% coming from state funding, and 13.34% coming from a CPB grant. The state funding is targeted for the statewide delivery system and for the core base engineering costs. The yearly CPB grant is decreasing.

Mr. Bruce Reichert informed the committee that in the 1980s he spent a lot of time in the Legislature working on the daily "Idaho Reports" segments. To demonstrate the quality programming provided by IdahoPTV, brief clips from the "Lewis & Clark: Crossing the Centuries" (airdate: March 11, 2004); and "Outdoor Idaho, Camp Rainbow Gold" (airdate: May 20, 2004). Camp Rainbow Gold is a camp for cancer patients sponsored by the American Cancer Society and the Mountain States Tumor Institute and is located near Ketchum, Idaho. Doctors applaud the healing nature of this area. Other clips were shown from Dialogue for Kids, Dialogue and Designing Idaho.

In response to a question about the level of funding needed to air "Idaho Reports" again on a daily basis, it was pointed out that the CPB funding was reduced in 1996 from $1.5 million to approximately $800,000. It is estimated it would cost $150,000 to produce "Idaho Reports" on a daily basis plus $100,000 of equipment. When asked if schools are taking advantage of the resources offered by public television, Mr. Morrill indicated that it is the number one choice for teachers. With the fair use provisions, PBS has cleared the rights for 1-3 years of use, and local productions are clear for use.

HB 713 Representative Ringo stated she appreciates the opportunity to answer questions about HB 713. At the earlier hearing on this legislation, it was represented that ISU was in support of this legislation, and they are not. Apparently there was some mis-communication with ISU's President. The following schools have been contacted and are in support of HB 713: UI, NIC, LCSC, BSU, NNU, Albertson, and BYU-Idaho. CSI didn't propose this change, but would go along with it.

Representative Ringo explained the transition that will take place under this legislation. The class of FY 2005-2006 will be the last recipients to receive the scholarship for both their Freshman and Sophomore years. After that students would receive about $800 their Freshman year to keep within the constraints of the current funding.

PRO Mr. Ali Ishaq, Student Body President, Boise State University, spoke in support of HB 713. He referred to the original intent of the Promise Scholarship to (1) encourage Idaho high school students to attend Idaho colleges and universities and (2) give Idaho high school students incentives to do well academically. He stated that granting this scholarship for one year will give added incentives and may be the decisive factor for whether students attend an Idaho school. This may also provide more incentive for them to maintain academic excellence in order to qualify for a match from the school the second year or to receive additional scholarships.
Representative Ringo mentioned that she provided members with some of the comments she has received. Of particular interest are those provided by BYU-Idaho outlining specific problems relating to tracking scholarship recipients.

In a discussion that followed, it was emphasized that the freshman year has the highest dropout rate because of the fiscal impact and the incredible adaptation that is required. If students succeed this year, they will have access to other scholarships. Concern was voiced about some of the colleges and universities not matching the Promise Scholarship.

MOTION: Representative Cannon made a motion to send HB 713 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. Representative Lake pointed out that based on the number of scholarship recipients, if $1,000 is given the first year, it will exceed the $4.5 million limit for the scholarship, and this provides no incentive for students to stay the second year. Representative Ringo clarified that the amount given would be reduced to $800 for the first year, and that colleges are committed to help students the second year.

Representative Block said she talked with President Meyerhoeffer at CSI, and he is recommending keeping the program as it is. The program gives students money to start college but also to continue.

Representative Boe opposed the motion, stating that CSI and ISU have always matched the Promise Scholarship and by front loading this does away with their recruiting capabilities.

Representative Garrett said as the proud Representative of BSU, she strongly supports this legislation. BSU is not participating in a match because they do not have as much scholarship money as other schools, but they are recruiting for additional scholarship money. BSU donors seem to concentrate on merit and need.

Representative Bennett said "every child has the right to try and get a college education." By front loading, it will assist those falling by the wayside.

When Representative Bayer asked why schools are not currently matching the scholarship in the second year, Mr. David Tollman, Financial Aids Officer, BSU, explained that many of their scholarship funds come with specific restrictions. Also, BSU is engaged in retention of students and is concentrating their efforts on orientation and advisement.

Representative Sayler stated this legislation is consistent with Senator Lee's intentions to encourage high school students to attend Idaho colleges and to maintain their grades.

Representative Ringo closed by saying that schools have encumbered funds and cannot do a match. When the program was put in place the state was to provide help with gathering data, but this help has not been forthcoming and it is very difficult to track the recipients.

VOTE: A roll call vote was called for on the original motion to send HB 713 to the floor with a DO PASS Recommendation. The motion failed on a 9 to 8 vote. Representatives Barraclough, Lake, Bradford, Block, Bauer, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, and Boe voted "Nay" and Representatives Bennet, Rydalch, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Andersen, Naccarato, and Sayler voted "Aye".
REPORT: Ms. Janet Orndorff, Vice President of the Boise School Board, was called upon to present the findings of the Boise School District's 2003 Bus Contract. Before she started, Chairman Barraclough said as an alumni of Boise schools, he is very disappointed in the signal being sent by the district by funding an additional study. He said they should respect the fact that state funds were spent to conduct an independent audit, and they need to review the report conducted by the Office of Performance and Evaluations (OPE) and look for ways to improve their transportation system. Ms. Orndorff addressed the concerns about Boise District rebuffing the findings of the OPE, saying the District asked for the study because they needed more information.

According to Ms. Orndorff, none of the trustees nor the administration was aware that Laidlaw, Inc. substituted 100 used buses for new buses until January when OPE completed their audit. The Boise District engaged their independent audit firm of Balukoff, Lindstrom & Company, CPAs to examine fully this contract and determine whether the District had an obligation to renegotiate the contract (Attachment 1). The District feels they did not cost taxpayers $2.4 million dollars as indicated by OPE. The District has taken steps to reduce their transportation costs and to not have something like this happen again (Attachment 2).

Mr. A.J. Balukoff, Boise School Board Trustee, said they appreciate the OPE auditors brining this to their attention. The District study shows that Laidlaw, Inc. will spend $31,000 more to maintain the older buses. Representative Garrett said she works closely with Boise District and feels they are professional, hard working and accountable. Referring to the steps for savings in Attachment 2, Mr. Balukoff said even though they estimate they can save $1 million dollars by cutting routes, the costs per mile may not reflect the efficiencies.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 10:05 A.M.




DATE: March 8, 2004
TIME: 8:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representative Naccarato
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 8:10 A.M. with a quorum being present. He explained that the sponsors of S 1323 have requested that this legislation be moved to Wednesday's agenda.
MINUTES: The minutes of March 4, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Bauer made a motion to accept the minutes as written. The motion carried.
S 1331 Senator Goedde presented S 1331, stating this legislation addresses the Office of Performance and Evaluation (OPE's) recommendation that the Department of Education improve accountability of funds and ensure accurate, equitable and consistent reporting mechanisms by all school districts for pupil transportation. This legislation will increase the number and frequency of pupil transportation audits.

It is estimated that 1.8 FTEs would be needed to accomplish this task, and the anticipated additional cost would be $190,100. Senator Goedde pointed out that the average saving to the State over the past ten years was $16,000 per audit and, with the additional personnel, there could actually be an overall savings to the state. This legislation provides equity, and all districts will play by the same rules.

A discussion followed and Senator Goedde and Mr. Rod McKnight, Supervisor of Transportation, State Department of Education, addressed the following:

  1. Will these audits be ongoing or done on a permanent basis? Ongoing, even in the best of circumstances they will be conducted every five years.
  2. In districts with very expensive transportation systems, like Garden Valley, will they be given the opportunity to adequately show the transportation difficulties they face? This legislation does not change funding, but allows the Department the opportunity to do audits. This legislation will compliment the process when it comes to waivers from the 85% transportation cap.
  3. Why the State Board of Education and not the State Department of Education? The State Board of Education has rule making authority and delegates the authority to the Department's Supervisor of Transportation.
  4. Will the language on Line 3, Page 2, regarding withholding reimbursements, preclude a district from doing necessary repairs and be an obstacle? More emphasis would be placed on fixing the bus, and the funding is appropriated a year in arrears. Don't see this as an issue.
  5. What input was received on this legislation in the Senate from the State Board of Education and the State Department of Education? Both pieces of transportation legislation were coordinated with Mr. Rod McKnight from the Department.
  6. Number of audits currently done per year? A full audit takes about a week, and 30-40 spot inspections are conducted each year. From 0-5 of these audits are full reviews with the Department financial experts involved.


This legislation provides the opportunity to expand the audits to be able to look at the financial data rather than just reviewing the mechanical and routes information.

MOTION: Representative Nielsen made a motion to send S 1331 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. A debate followed and the following issues were discussed.

  1. Representative Jones said because of the empire building of the State Board, he would be more comfortable if the legislation specifies the Board will contract with the Department.
  2. Representative Lake referred to the green sheet produced by JFAC, pointing out that this legislation will require an additional appropriation of $190,100 from the general fund. Senator Goedde said he doesn't disagree, but it is hoped the savings from these audits will offset this funding.
  3. Representative Rydalch said she is surprised we have to put this into law. Mr. McKnight responded saying this has been the process for three decades, but this legislation will increase the degree and rotation frequency of the audits. It will also increase the oversight to educate the districts in efficiencies and cost savings.
  4. Representative Nielsen stated this is a good route to go because it provides oversight both ways. The Board delegates to the Superintendent of Transportation, the Department determines if funds are withheld, and districts can appeal to the Board.
  5. Representative Cannon said he is puzzled that we just implemented a plan last session to bring transportation into compliance, and we are now authorizing more auditors. He is leery of a plan that says it will save money, but needs money, and he is concerned this will take money out of the classroom. Senator Goedde said the legislation setting the cap doesn't address the equity issues where some districts are getting more than their fair share. The audits will address this, and the audits have proven successful, but it costs money to hire auditors. If we break even or save money it will put more money back into the classroom.
  6. Representative Kulczyk stated putting the 1.8 FTEs in statute will require us to repeal the law later. Senator Goedde said there will be nothing in statute that says the Department will have to hire 1.8 FTEs. This legislation will keep people from working the system, and it is a fair way for districts with unique problems to obtain a waiver.
VOTE ON S 1331 There being no further debate, a vote was called for on the motion to send S 1331 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote. Representatives Jones, Bradford and Kulczyk wished to be recorded as voting "Nay". Representative Sayler will carry S 1331 on the floor.
S 1344 Representative Goedde introduced S 1344 to the committee, saying this legislation addresses the second recommendation from the OPE in their report on pupil transportation. It is recommended that the Department of Education review and approve local contracts for pupil transportation. District contracts entered into by the boards of trustees for the transportation of pupils will follow the pupil transportation model developed by the Department. This process should help eliminate potential contract problems.
MOTION: Representative Lake made a motion to send S 1344 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. Representative Jones asked if this legislation applies to charter schools, and it was not clear if charter schools are covered by the transportation section. The motion carried by voice vote. Representative Boe will carry S 1344 on the floor.
S 1345 Representative Goedde presented S 1345 to the committee. He explained that districts may now take advantage of group purchases, but this legislation allows for districts to take part in the state purchasing contracts. Representative Trail said that District 6 currently uses cooperative purchasing contracts, but a greater savings may be realized by entering into the state contracts. It was pointed out that this opportunity needs to be publicized, and Representative Boe suggested that the Idaho Association of School Administrators and the Idaho School Boards Association would be the ones to help publicize this.
MOTION: Representative Cannon made a motion to send S 1345 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote. Representative Trail will carry S 1345 on the floor.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, Chairman Barraclough adjourned the meeting at 8:55 A.M.




DATE: March 9, 2004
TIME: 8:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 8:05 A.M. with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: The minutes of March 5 and March 8, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Kulczyk made a motion to accept the minutes of March 8 as written. The motion carried. Representative Lake made a motion to accept the minutes of March 5 as written. The motion carried.
RS 14260 Representative Block introduced RS 14260, stating this legislation will provide an opportunity for students to earn an additional Robert R. Lee Scholarship if they remain drug, alcohol and tobacco free during high school. She explained that this RS does not make any changes to the original Category A or Category B Scholarship language, but adds a new Drug, Alcohol and Tobacco Free Category. This legislation does not include a Category C Scholarship, as was originally included in House Bill 804; therefore, this legislation lessens the fiscal impact.

It was explained that students who qualify for the Category A or Category B Scholarships may also be eligible for the Drug, Alcohol and Tobacco Free Scholarship. High school students will earn one semester of scholarship funds for each year they remain drug, alcohol and tobacco free beginning in FY 2005. In ninth grade students who choose to enter this program will sign an agreement, and their names will be put into the drug testing pool. If they test positive, they will lose previous credits but can reapply the next year. If in college they are convicted of a drug infraction, they will lose their scholarship.

Because students will be earning credits from FY 2005 through FY 2009, there will be no need for the unobligated Category B funds. A perfect use for the millennium fund would be to fund this scholarship starting in FY 2010. Page 4, Lines 43-45, direct that the state board of education and the board of regents of the University of Idaho shall adopt rules to manage the Category A, Category B and the Drug, Alcohol and Tobacco Free Category Scholarships.

Representative Block responded to the following questions/concerns:

Was this legislation coordinated with the college and university financial aid officers and administration? Twin Falls Superintendent of Schools, Wiley Dobbs, provided input for this legislation. Twin Falls School District has a drug testing program for athletes that can be used to test students who opt to enter this scholarship program. Mr. Hathaway, Region V Director for the Department of Health & Welfare, worked with President Meyerhoeffer at CSI. The Idaho Association of School Administrators and the Idaho School Board Association also provided input for this legislation. High schools will know which students qualify for this scholarship and will indicate this on student transcripts. Also, colleges and universities are already administering the Category A & B Scholarships.

How would the drug testing work? A copy of the Twin Falls School District's drug testing program was included in the bill folder. Basically, they randomly test 10 students once a week. The names of those students wishing to participate in the drug, alcohol and tobacco scholarship program would be added to the existing pool. The cost for the drug test would be $3.75 if the tobacco element is added. The drug testing data is tracked through the Safe and Drug Free Program. The district pays for these tests.

Were other school districts contacted? There are 17 school districts that have drug testing programs. This is an optional program for students and for school districts.

MOTION: Representative Boe made a motion to introduce RS 14260 for printing. Representative Block explained that because it is late in the session, she was hoping that RS 14260 could be introduced for printing and referred to the second reading calendar.
SUBSTITUTE MOTION: Representative Nielsen made a substitute motion to introduce RS 14260 for printing and to refer it to the second reading calendar.

A question was asked about the amounts of the various categories of scholarships and whether colleges would match the Drug, Alcohol and Tobacco Free Scholarships. It was explained that the current amounts for this scholarship program are set by the State Board of Education. Category B scholarship recipients receive $250 per semester and if they also qualify for the Drug, Alcohol and Tobacco Free Scholarship they would receive $500 per semester. CSI has indicated they will continue to match the Category B scholarship, but not the Drug, Alcohol, and Tobacco Free Scholarships. Concerns were voiced because Boise State and University of Idaho were not consulted.

PRO Mr. Rod Leonard, Senior Planner for the Idaho Department of Correction, spoke in support of RS 14260. The use of alcohol, drugs, or tobacco by young people often leads to poor life choices and poor behavior; unfortunately, this behavior may also lead to crime and incarceration. Eighty-five percent of Idaho Department of Correction incarcerated or supervised offenders have some substance abuse issues. Education is a very important component in the rehabilitative efforts of offenders, and offenders with a high school degree have lower recidivism and do much better in the community (Attachment 1).
PRO Ms. Patti O'Maley, Teacher representing the Walker Center, spoke in support of RS 14260. She indicated that she has served as the Interim Scholarship Director at CSI. Ms. O'Maley mentioned the high cost to society and the impact on families due to drug and alcohol abuse. She stressed how hopeless these students feel and the importance of transitioning these students back into high school. As a teacher, she believes in educational support.
PRO Mr. John Hathaway, Region V Director, Department of Health and Welfare, spoke in support of RS 14260. He pointed out that only 39% of Idaho high school graduates go into higher education compared to three out of four nationally. He talked about the poverty level in Idaho indicating that Medicaid pays for four out of 10 babies born in Idaho, and one of every eight children goes to bed hungry. Many school districts are implementing summer meal programs. He stressed that education will always be the key to breaking poverty. He pointed out that all of the colleges and universities have just raised student fees, and he said he hopes these schools won't accept the scholarship funds and then say it is too difficult to administer the funds.
PRO Mr. Brent Reinke, Director, Idaho Department of Juvenile Corrections, spoke in support of RS 14260. He referred to the 170,936 students who are currently in Idaho's juvenile corrections system and said this kind of incentive might help some of these young people. A comment was made about students remaining drug free while incarcerated, and a question was asked about whether testing is continued once they are released. Mr. Reinke said testing is continued through the county systems.
VOTE ON SUBSTITUTE MOTION: A roll call vote was called for on the substitute motion to introduce RS 14260 for printing and to refer it to the second reading calendar. The motion carried by a unanimous vote of 18 to 0.
Mr. Paul Powell, Chairman of the Board of Directors, Hidden Springs Charter School, introduced Mr. James Merriman, Charter School Institute, State University of New York. Because of the Governor's interest in strengthening the charter school law and the proposed state charter school commission shaping up to be a key battleground, Mr. Powell said he contacted the Center for Education Reform in Washington, D.C. and asked them to identify a national expert who could come and give legislators a national perspective on the charter school issues. Mr. Merriman was recommended.
PRESENTATION: Mr. James Merriman, Charter School Institute, addressed the committee, relating his experiences in New York with what is happening in Idaho. He stressed that a statewide charter school commission is an important juncture and provides an alternate authorizer with statewide authority. The goal of the statewide chartering board is to increase the quality of charters to face the challenges in K-12 and to meet the goals of higher education.

Mr. Merriman explained that the New York charter structure came about as the result of a political compromise. The Governor of New York wanted education reform, and the Senate and House wanted pay raises. Through negotiations the Board of Trustees for charter schools was set up at State University, with the Governor appointing the members. Charter schools in New York are improving student learning and achievement. Statewide, clear expectations have been developed and are enforced. The Board has been careful, not only as a moral imperative, but as a political imperative. Not all schools have done well. Three charters were recently reviewed for renewal, and one was not reauthorized and one was denied the authority to continue to teach the middle school grades. The Board is clearly accountable and what they do reflects on the Governor.

Only two school districts in New York have authorized six charter schools. Mr. Merriman says this is no surprise because no one likes competition, and school districts aren't the exception. He said he has "never seen a McDonald's in a Burger King parking lot".

Without a statewide authorizing entity, generally, charter schools are authorized without clear expectations and have very little accountability. The shifting rules make it difficult to attract capital financing. This experience has been born out in other states. He referred to a study done by the Center for Education Reform where state charter laws are evaluated each year. The strength of the law correlates with the quality of the charter schools and the academic achievement. Mr. Merriman cited other successful authorizing entities as Central Michigan State, Washington, D.C. public charter school board, Arizona and California. It is important to create support structures for those wanting to start a charter school.

A discussion followed and Mr. Merriman clarified the following regarding the New York charter schools:

  • Because of monitoring, oversight and clear direction, they are not dealing with accusations of fraud, nepotism, unlawful/inadequate accounting.
  • In poor rural areas where schools aren't providing an adequate education, parents don't always have alternative choices and they seek out charter schools.
  • The size of their charters is not set by law, but the Board would not approve a charter wanting to start with 3,000 or so students. They feel charters need to start small and grow thoughtfully with strong leaders.
  • New York has an open enrollment policy with no preference for the founder's children. He said he wished they did have a 5-10% preference. Schools can specify that they will accept only those students on free and reduced lunch. There is no doubt that parental involvement plays a key role in students attending charter schools, but the "creaming" argument is not true in New York.
  • Students are funded with pass through funds from the districts using a complicated formula. Charter school students receive funding at 75-85% of that for traditional public school students.
  • New York charter law does not allow for virtual schools. The law states a charter school must be housed in one building, and virtual schools weren't thought of at the time the laws were written.
  • New York charter law does not require election of board members. Mr. Merriman stressed the importance of the cohesiveness of the Board of Directors. Charter school board members are selected in the bylaws and are approved early in the process.
  • New York doesn't have facilities funding for charter schools. They do receive support from not-for-profit foundations, and cities and school districts have allowed charter schools to use their facilities.
  • Regarding the success of the statewide board reflecting on the Governor and the makeup of the New York legislature, it was explained that the Assembly is controlled by the Democrats and the Senate is controlled by the Republicans. No Governor would want to be tarred for supporting legislation that results in a string of bad schools.
  • All but 5% of charter school teachers must be certified. It is hard to attract teachers if they are not paid on the same scale as traditional public schools and do not receive the same benefits. He said there is no collective bargaining when the schools are started. Usually when the schools are well organized and are succeeding you don't see collective bargaining. When schools are failing they move to collective bargaining.
Dr. Randy Thompson stated there has been too much made of the competition between charter schools and traditional schools and not enough emphasis placed on cooperation. Of the 241,199 public school students in Idaho, only 8 or 9,000 attend charter schools. He said there are many opportunities to collaborate between traditional and charter schools and pointed out that Owyhee Elementary has adopted a successful charter school model and enrollment is increasing.
ADJOURN: Chairman Barraclough thanked Mr. Merriman for a very informative presentation. There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 9:55 A.M.




DATE: March 10, 2004
TIME: 8:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 8:07 A.M. with a quorum being present.
Ms. Karen Gustafson, Office of the State Board of Education, reminded the committee members that the WICHE reception is being held this evening from 5:00 to 7:00 P.M. at the Hall of Mirrors. There will be a guest speaker around 6:00 P.M.
S 1323 Representative Ellsworth informed the committee that the group working on the amendments for S 1323 have agreed on everything that needs to be done, but they would appreciate more time to work on the wording for the amendments before presenting this bill.
MOTION: Representative Jones made a motion to hold S 1323 time certain until Friday, March 12, 2004. He concurs with Representative Ellsworth that they agree in principle, but have not come to an agreement on the exact wording. The motion carried.

Representative Eberle asked why this legislation is being heard in the Education Committee and not in the Transportation Committee. Representative Jones explained that it deals with public school buses and student safety and is addressed in the Education Section of Idaho Code.

Representative Boe shared a comment made by the choir director of the Barcelona Choir who said "he admires schools in America because they teach music". She said this was a good reminder, and she hopes we continue to teach music in our public schools.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, Chairman Barraclough adjourned the meeting at 8:25 A.M.




DATE: March 12, 2004
TIME: 8:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representatives Jones, Block, Naccarato
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 8:06 A.M. with a quorum being present. He informed the committee that the financial portion of the Governor's charter school legislation was passed in JFAC yesterday and was referred to the Senate second reading calendar.
MINUTES: The minutes of March 9 and March 10, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Lake made motions to accept both sets of minutes. The motions carried by voice vote.
S 1353 Representative Bayer introduced S 1353, stating that this bill received unanimous votes in both the Senate Education Committee and on the Senate floor. Representative Bayer deferred to Ms. Raegan Komprud to explain the changes.
PRO Ms. Raegan Komprud, Lobbyist, Idaho Commercial Driving Schools, explained that Section 33-1702, Lines 32 - 42 are being moved to Section 49-2102. Section 49-2102 will be administered through rule, rather than regulation and Lines 6-8 are deleted to provide clarification. Under 49-2101, Line 42 adds a requirement for criminal background checks, and Lines 48-49 provide that once a person has been certified as an instructor, they can teach in any approved private driver training programs.
MOTION: Representative Kulczyk moved to send S 1353 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. He said he had worked with Ms. Komprud last session on this legislation and feels it is good legislation.

Ms. Komprud was asked how this legislation compares to statutes in neighboring states. She explained it does compare. There are plans to move this authority under the Transportation Department, similar to neighboring states, but it was felt it would take a year to work through the financial impact and provide a comfort level. Commercial driving schools receive no funding from the state. Mr. Mike Ryals, Owner of Ryals Drivers Training, responded to questions about teaching students to drive in winter conditions. He said he doesn't control the weather, and the best that can be done, if the training takes place in the summer, is to show videos and talk about it. He also said he feels the four months the student is required to drive with a parent provides an opportunity to teach these skills ­ parents must be responsible.

CON Ms. Beth Weaver, Specialist, State Department of Education, spoke in opposition to S 1353. Ms. Weaver said the State Department of Education and the Office of the State Board both support moving this responsibility to the Transportation Department.

Ms. Weaver opposed this legislation because she feels the current language serves a need. Rescinding this language will make it difficult to issue waivers to students moving to Idaho who have met all of the driver training requirements except for the observation portion. Some states do not require the observation as part of their classes, but parents provide the observation. Currently, a waiver can be granted for the observation requirement if parents sign an affidavit showing they have provided adequate observation. Concern was also voiced about removing the language under 49-2101 requiring inspections of the facilities and equipment. She stressed the Department's concern is about the kids and their environment. Commercial driving schools must be held to the same standards and quality of training as provided by the public schools.

VOTE ON S 1353 A vote was called for on the motion to send S 1353 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote. Representative Bayer will carry S 1353 on the floor.
Chairman Barraclough asked the group of students attending the meeting to identify themselves. The eighth grade students from the Sandpoint Charter School were introduced by their sponsor who stated they are visiting the Legislature as part of their Government course.
S 1323 Representative Ellsworth presented the amendments to S 1323, stating they have spent a great deal of time working with the stakeholders, and all are in agreement with the amendments (Attachment 1). Representative Trail asked if this legislation is modeled after statues from other states, and Representative Ellsworth said they did look at statues from other states.
MOTION: Representative Lake made a motion to send S 1323 to general orders with committee amendments attached. The motion carried by voice vote. Representatives Jones and Ellsworth will carry S 1323 on the floor.
Mr. Steve Guerber, Executive Director, Idaho State Historical Society, recited the purpose of this 97-year-old agency as it was formulated by its Board of Trustees as: "The mission of the Idaho State Historical Society is to educate through the identification, preservation, and interpretation of Idaho's cultural heritage." He assured the committee that the agency takes its mission seriously, and the Society is doing reasonably well in K-12 education, doing the best of its ability at the college level, and in education as a lifetime process they may be among the most prolific providers of learning to be found in Idaho.

Mr. Guerber provided a very informative presentation on the services related to education provided by the Society (Attachment 2). He mentioned that the Society's Internet site, idahohistory.net, provides a wealth of information. He indicated that the Society's general fund appropriation has been reduced by 20%, and they are looking at other sources of funding to support their programs. He said their "goal as an agency is to help those who visit our state, move to our state, or have and will call Idaho "home" now and in the future, to gain the knowledge that is important in understanding where we came from in order to better appreciate where we want to go."

In response to questions, Mr. Guerber indicated that (1) sufficient resources are available for the Lewis & Clark activities with the $50,000 allocated and the approximately $2 million in Federal funding that is expected; (2) the most critical need of the Society, that was not funded, is an archivist position - Idaho has only three where other states have 15-18; (3) Federal funding requires an ongoing link with Idaho tribes, and the Nez Perce have their own archives and the Lewis & Clark project has been positive to allow the tribes to share their perspective; (4) T-21 money has helped maintain four historic buildings in Franklin; and (5) the Society did work with IdahoPTV to develop and review the scripts, provided photos and other support. Mr. Guerber said the Lewis & Clark production was incredible and was done on a very limited budget - it actually used pictures of Idaho mountains.

Chairman Barraclough had to leave for a meeting so the gavel was passed to Vice Chairman Lake.

Repesentative Trail provided the committee with a memo to the Governor regarding National Board Certification Research (Attachment 3). He indicated this is the first major research produced reflecting the results of Idaho's funding efforts.

Dr. Bob Haley, Legislative Liaison, State Department of Education, provided information on the State/Local Revenues per ADA for 2002-2003 that was provided to Idaho's charter schools. Generally the financial summaries from the previous year are available by this time, but the Department is running behind on this report. He pulled together these figures at the request of the Chairman.

Dr. Haley said he is not here to lobby one way or the other on charter schools. He discussed his involvement in the Meridian Charter High School of Technology, Hidden Springs, North Star, White Pines, Thomas Jefferson, and the Meridian Medical Arts Charter School to open next fall. He said these have been excellent processes, have met Idaho public school laws and have worked with both the Meridian and Boise School Districts. There have been a few bumps, but the requirements were met. There are lots of good things happening, and these schools are complying with the laws.

Dr. Haley briefly reviewed Attachment 4 with the committee, pointing out the average ADA for charter schools was $4,509.63. Charters do not receive the "off the top" funding, and they do not receive money from supplemental levies. Therefore, these figures are lower than figures we have heard. He stated that the greatest revenue goes to Meridian and the lowest to the Idaho Virtual Academy. He said three factors influence ADA and those are (1) what students are served; (2) size of school; and (3) teacher experience. It costs more to educate secondary students and schools under 200 students receive more funding. Meridian receives more because they hire the best teachers they can find and have less than 200 students. IDVA teaches no secondary students, is very large and teachers have a low experience index. Dr. Haley referred to pages 3 and 4 which show that Nampa gets less than Liberty Charter School. Federal funding is given for three years only for charter school start up. It was clarified that charter schools are exempt from the use or lose clause; and therefore, do not lose funding if they do not hire the allocated staff. It was also clarified that the discrepancies in IDVA's funding resulted in part because of the reporting dates used for students enrolled. They began with 700 students and ended up with around 1000. Also figures may be different than what we've heard because the figures here do not include the costs/funding for buildings.

ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, Vice Chairman Lake adjourned the meeting at 9:30 A.M.




DATE: March 16, 2004
TIME: 8:30 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 8:33 A.M. with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: The minutes of March 12, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Lake made a motion to accept the minutes as written. The motion carried.
S 1350a Dr. Bob West, Chief Deputy Superintendent, State Department of Education, presented S 1350a. This bill amends Idaho Code 33-1209 that gives authority to the Professional Standards Commission within the Idaho Department of Education to revoke, suspend, or deny a teaching certificate, or reprimand a teacher for having violated standards of the code of ethics of the Idaho teaching profession.

The bill expands the options now available to the 18 member commission, representing teachers, administrators, specialists and Idaho colleges of education, to place reasonable conditions on a teaching credential in a manner similar to placing a teacher on probation. The current options provide two extremes, either to do away with a certificate all together or to give the teacher a letter of reprimand.

The bill also makes clarifications and cross references Idaho Code 33-1208, by specifically listing that a conviction of any of the crimes listed in that section automatically prevents a person from being issued a teaching certificate (Attachment 1).

Dr. West explained that the bill was amended in the Senate to insert the term "reasonable" after conditions were worked out between the Idaho Education Association and the Department.

Dr. West clarified that this bill applies to anyone holding a teaching certificate and administrators, nurses, and consultant specialists and pertains to unethical conduct and those crimes listed in 33-1208.

MOTION: Representative Lake moved to send S 1350a to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote. Representative Nielsen will carry S 1350a on the floor.
Chairman Barraclough asked Mr. Blake Hall, President of the State Board of Education, to address the committee. Idaho is fortunate to have very dedicated, talented people in our education system. The State Board of Education and the Department of Education are committed to working together, and the ultimate desire of all is to improve education in Idaho through education reform. This legislative session will be remembered for its focus on education.

Teachers and parents are thanking the Board members for the ISAT, because it lets them know where the child is at the beginning of the year and identifies the child's strengths and weaknesses. Idaho's young people must be able to compete worldwide. There are currently five countries with educational systems that exceed those of the United States, and it is estimated there could be 16 within the next four years.

Mr. Hall was asked for an update on the LEP committee and on the status of Mr. Hammond and Ms. McGee's replacements on or reappointments to the Board. Mr. Hall said that the Governor can reappoint Mr. Hammond and Ms. McGee, but there has been no action taken. Once the session ends, the Governor can focus on these appointments.

The LEP committee was formed because the State Board saw a disturbing trend with LEP students in the state. With the tracking capability of the ISAT and NCLB, Idaho is in a prime position to address this issue. The State Board does not have the answers, but they believe the answers are out there. The committee is meeting around the state to gather information on best practices, and they are also looking at other states' best practices. This effort is a partnership to allow LEP children to be educated in the same fashion as all other children.

The current system of having State Board members appointed and the State Superintendent of Public Education being elected is working. It is not bad that people don't always agree. Board members serve a 5-year term and that term ends on March 1.

In response to the November 15 temporary rules being developed without input from the colleges of education, Mr. Hall said these rules will expire at the end of the session. Stakeholders have been involved in the Idaho's Most Project for a number of years. Mr. Hall stressed that ABCTE is only one option for certification, and pointed out that the Board does not hire teachers. The local school board trustees can choose to hire teachers with alternate certifications. Lewis-Clark State College has taken the lead on adopting a "fast track" to teacher certification based on the vision given by the State Board. Any Idaho college or university can come forward with alternate certification paths.

ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 9:25 A.M.




DATE: March 18, 2004
TIME: 8:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

None
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheets.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 8:04 A.M. with a quorum being present.
MINUTES: The minutes of March 16, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Kulczyk made a motion to accept the minutes as written. The motion carried.
S 1444 Senator Gary Schroeder introduced S 1444 and provided a handout briefly outlining the appeal procedure, revocation procedure, admissions policy, and the makeup of the Charter School Commission as addressed in S 1444 (Attachment 1). A list of Idaho public charter schools was also provided. Senator Schroeder described the various changes, additions and deletions contained within S 1444.
  1. Pg. 1, Line 40 - changing "all" to "any" allows for more than one school within a district to be doing the same thing.
  2. Pg. 2, Lines 12-43 - add a new section, 33-5202A, and defines authorized chartering entity, charter, founder, petition, public charter school, public virtual school, and traditional public school.
  3. Pg. 3, Lines 3-12 allow for six charter schools to be established in a school year, only one per school district per school year. Lines 20-36 provide for public charter schools within two or more school districts and specify that the charter petition shall be submitted to the board of trustees of the school district in which the primary attendance area lies. Lines 35-36 provide that a virtual school charter may be granted by the public charter school commission. Lines 40-42 specify that a public charter school chartered by the charter school commission is designated as a local education agency (LEA). A letter from the Idaho School Boards Association clarifying issues surrounding LEA as well as providing ISBA's position on the issue was given to each member (Attachment 2).
  4. Pg. 6, Lines 48-49 - provides that citizens in the area of attendance shall be made aware of the enrollment opportunities of the public charter school.
  5. Pg. 7, Lines 1-23 allow for not more than 10% of the capacity of the public charter school to be children of the founders and describe the lottery process for a family with several children. Lines 24-26 specify that there will be no carryover list from year to year and a new lottery shall be conducted each year to fill vacancies. Lines 28-30 specify that two persons not associated with the public charter school will conduct the random selection method.
  6. Pgs. 10 & 11 outline the Enforcement - Revocation - Appeal process and provide for a reasonable opportunity for the public charter school to cure the defect(s) before a charter is revoked. Attachment 1 provides information on the appeal procedure and the revocation-appeal process.
  7. Pg. 12, Lines 12-53 describe the Public Charter School Commission as three members who are current or former members of boards of directors and three members who are current or former trustees of an Idaho school district - all appointed by the Governor. A seventh member shall be from the public at large and appointed by the other six members.
  8. Pg. 13, Lines 18 & 19 - require that all public charter schools shall come into compliance with the duties and requirements of this act.
Senator McWilliams addressed the changes, additions and deletions found on Pages 4 and 5 of S 1444 that deal with ethics. These changes address the ambiguities in the current charter school law. Public charter schools are organized as non-profit organizations, but are public schools and subject to the same Code of Ethics regarding bribery and corrupt influence, prohibitions against contracts with officers, ethics in government, open public meetings, and disclosure of public records.

Subsection 5a deals with what is lawful and unlawful for a director and the board of directors regarding contracts or other transactions pertaining to the maintenance or conduct of the authorized chartering entity and charter. Subsection 6 sets forth the requirements when relatives of any director or relatives of the spouse of a director are being considered for employment.

A new section, 33-5204A, addresses Professional Codes and Standards and states that every person who serves in a public charter school shall comply with the standards of ethics or conduct applicable to public officials. This section aligns charter schools with traditional public schools.

MOTION: Representative Rydalch moved to send S 1444 to the amending order with committee amendments attached. She was looking forward to seeing the Governor's charter school bill, but this committee was not privileged to see or discuss this legislation. It is important for everyone to make this legislation the best we can for students and parents. Representative Rydalch asked for Brian Whitlock to present the amendments.
Mr. Brian Whitlock, Chief of Staff, Governor's Office, introduced the amendments explaining that charter school law has been discussed at length and many have been working on this effort for more than a year. The goal with this legislation is to remove the agony surrounding charter schools and treat folks fairly. S1444 with the amendments will do this. Many of the elements from the Governor's legislation are included in

S 1444 and these amendments will improve the entire bill. It was pointed out that eight sections of S 1444 are preserved in their entirety and four have slight amendments.

Mr. Kent Kunz, Legislative Liaison, Governor's Office, described the amendments (Attachment 3). Major changes are pointed out below.
  1. Section 2 contains the Governor's definitions that allow for the statewide charter school commission.
  2. Section 3 restores the Governor's original language on how a public charter school is created and defines an LEA according to the federal definition.
  3. Section 6 is a new section not contained in either the Governor's bill or S 1444 and provides three options for the local board of trustees when considering a petition for a new charter school. They may either (1) consider the petition and approve the charter; or (2) consider the petition and reject the charter; or (3) refer the petition to the public charter school commission. This section encourages the petitioners to work with the local district.
  4. Section 8 provides a uniform and public process for appealing a denial of a charter by a chartering entity.
  5. Section 9 reinstates the Governor's proposal as it pertains to enforcement and revocation of a charter.
  6. Section 12 pertains to the composition of the public charter school commission, allows the Governor to appoint the at-large member and provides for 2-year, staggered terms.


These amendments improve S 1444 to provide for local control. The Governor believes there is no better local control than a parent making decision for their own children. He also feels these amendments provide more opportunities for educational choice and rewards those parents involved in the education of their children.

Mr. Paul Powell, representing the Idaho Charter School Network, stated he was opposed to S 1444, but will support it with the proposed amendments.
Ms. Kathy Phelan, President, Idaho Education Association, said her organization supports S 1444 without the amendments. She asked that they consider the importance of the commitment of the school to the community and the connection between the community and the school as they review this legislation and the amendments.
Mrs. June Blackhurst, parent of ten children from Nampa, explained she has spent two months trying to work out the changes to this legislation. Things are different here than expected - it's about power and money. She supports S 1444, but does not agree with the amendments. She believes in looking at this for all children (the dysfunctional as well as those who excel), not just charter children. The public needs to know there is a cost.
Mrs. Cindy Schiller, Nampa, stated she is concerned about the education of all 250,000 students in Idaho, not just those in charter schools. She said it is very expensive to run charter schools, and this issue is about local control and everyone's tax dollars. She supports

S 1444 without the amendments.

Mr. Steven Adams, President of the Idaho Charter Association, spoke in strong support of the amendments. He said this legislation is the result of a 1-2 year effort, and he appreciates the Governor's office brokering a compromise. He mentioned his concern about the majority inflicting their views on the minority. He thanked the Governor's office for listening.
Dr. Cliff Green, Executive Director, Idaho School Boards Association, stated he wanted to dispel a misnomer about the ISBA. ISBA is not anti-charter school, and they support charter schools and applaud their successes. ISBA is concerned that the charter school law is clear and concise. ISBA worked with the Idaho Charter School Network last year and proposed legislation that passed in the Senate but was held in this committee. The participants of S 1444 agree with the Governor that parents make the best choices for their children. Decisions are best left to local control.
Dr. Mike Friend, Executive Director, Idaho Association of School Administrators, stated they support S 1444. The IASA supports ethics and standards for all, fiscal accountability for all, providing limitations, the commission as an appellant board, both parties open and fair, and the opportunity to discuss issues/defects.
Mrs. Laurie Boeckel, parent from Nampa, stated she wants to see there is an equal and honest playing field. Local control is not about a few parents controlling the system. She is in support of S 1444, keeping local control and keeping private enterprises financially accountable.
Ms. Janet Orndorff, Trustee representing the Ada County School District Legislative Committee, stated that they have studied S 1444 and are in favor of this legislation. They have concerns about the amendments because if the 5-year renewal provision is removed it creates a huge problem. Only the public charter school would be allowed to open up the charter which would be the same as allowing only the teachers to open a master contract. Also, if a charter school is allowed LEA status, the district would have no control over the school, but would still be liable. Please make sure there is more time to study and weigh these amendments.
Mrs. Gayle O'Donahue, parent representing Liberty Charter School, stated she was one of the founders of Victory Charter School, the first charter school in the state. She supports S 1444 with amendments, citing the year of hard work that has gone into this effort.
Mr. Neil Colwell, Legislative Adviser, IACI, stated that the distinctions of the two competing bills are very substantial. Business has the same goals as parents for children - the best outcome and achievement. IACI supports the Governor's legislation because it creates a level playing field to allow charters to flourish. Elements of S 1444 will continue the strife that exists. The applicant goes to the board of trustees for charter approval and also must appeal to the board of trustees which leaves out the review of the appeal by the Office of the State Board. There is no process for the Idaho Virtual Academy to appeal. The elements in S 1444 all create trails to the courts. Section 14, Page 13 of S 1444 says this act doesn't apply to existing charter schools, but goes on to say "provided however, that all public charter schools shall come into compliance with the duties and requirements of this act." The Governor's bill proposes clear, concise and predictable processes.
Mr. Bart McKnight, representing the Coalition of Charter School Families and Liberty Charter School, spoke in support of S 1444 with amendments. He said this legislation will open the doors for all children, and he appreciates the cooperative efforts that have gone on for over a year.
Mr. Dale Wheeler, Chairman of the Nampa School District, stated that

S 1444 addresses a lot of the issues and problems they have experienced in the Nampa District. He admonished the committee to stick with S 1444.

A discussion followed. Representative Kulczyk cited Rule 38, stating he has a conflict of interest because he is a volunteer member of the Rolling Hills Charter School.

Representative Jones said the amendments are significant and the committee has not had a chance to discuss the amendments. Procedurally, if the Senate does not concur with the House amendments the legislation dies. Leadership can appoint a Conference Committee to negotiate specific amendments. Representative Jones said he will support the amendments if this bill is sent to the amending order and the amendments are discussed one at a time.

Representative Boe agreed because she wasn't aware of the amendments and had not seen them until a few minutes ago.

Representative Lake took a different approach mentioning that the committee was told it would be considering the Governor's RS a few weeks ago. Section 6 is the only section that contains new information.

Chairman Barraclough explained that the amendments are still in draft form and S 1444 was received late yesterday. He said he hopes everyone has had a chance to review, and we do need to talk about the amendments.

Representative Andersen said he agrees with Representative Rydalch on the importance of this legislation, but he is deeply chagrined not to have been privy to the amendments. Bringing the amendments without review is not appropriate for this Legislative body.

Representative Trail stated his concern because when there is a tremendous amount of information to digest in a hurry, bad decisions are made. The Governor said we could meet the needs of charter schools without infringing on local control.

Representative Rydalch spoke in support of the motion to send S 1444 to the amending order with committee amendments attached. She said the amended legislation provides "the best of both worlds".

Representative Cannon said it is impossible to make a well educated vote in a few minutes. He voiced a concern about sending a divided message to the floor.

Representative Eberle said he has studied S 1444 and the amendments, and the amendments deal primarily with the independent chartering authority.

SUBSTITUTE MOTION: Representative Jones made a substitute motion to send S 1444 to the amending order. Representative Cannon said he does not support exposing the bill to whatever the floor wants to add or delete. He said he favors sending it to the floor, but reserves the right to gather additional information and go after it on the floor.

It was explained that each section will be done individually on the amending order, but the debate is somewhat limited.

ROLL CALL VOTE SUBSTITUTE MOTION: A roll call vote was called for on the substitute motion to send S 1444 to the amending order. The motion failed on a 12 to 6 vote. Chairman Barraclough, Representatives Lake, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, and Bayer voted "Nay" and Representatives Jones, Trail, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, and Sayler voted "Aye".
ROLL CALL VOTE ORIGINAL MOTION: A roll call vote was called for on the original motion to send S 1444 to the amending order with committee amendments attached. The motion passed on a 12 to 6 vote. Chairman Barraclough, Representatives Lake, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, and Bayer voted "Aye" and Representatives Jones, Trail, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, and Sayler voted "Nay".
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting adjourned at 9:45 A.M.




DATE: March 19, 2004
TIME: 8:00 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representatives Trail and Bauer
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 8:04 A.M. with a quorum being present.
S 1329a Senator Schroeder introduced S 1329a by stating this legislation does two things. It removes obsolete language due to the specified 5-year period for the initial approval of charter schools is up. The second thing the legislation does is allow for the State Department of Education to review a charter petition before the final approval is given by the local school board trustees. Senator Schroeder found that many charter school petitions were being looked at by Carolyn Mauer at the State Department anyway, so he decided it would be a good idea for them to look at all of the petitions before the final document is submitted for approval.

In response to questions about problems with petitions and no time line for the Department to review the petitions, Sen. Schroeder mention one group trying to select specific blocks and areas of attendance, and a time line wasn't needed because the petitioners would ensure the petition was moved forward.

MOTION: Representative Nielsen moved to hold S 1329a in committee for time certain at the call of the Chairman. The motion carried by voice vote. Representatives Andersen, Naccarato and Sayler wished to be recorded as voting "Nay".
S 1346a Senator Schroeder introduced S 1346a, stating that this legislation deals with the attendance area for a public charter school. Lines 18-20 are added to indicate that "The attendance area of a charter school, as described in the petition, shall be composed of compact and contiguous areas". The amendments provide a clarification for the IDVA in that they operate throughout the state and the state of Idaho is considered a compact and contiguous area. This eliminates schools trying to choose specific households.
MOTION: Representative Rydalch moved to send S 1346a to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote. Representatives Kulczyk and Nielsen wished to be recorded as voting "Nay". Representative Naccarato will carry S 1346a on the floor.
S 1347 Senator Schroeder introduced S 1347, explaining that as he traveled around the state attending education forums he visited charter schools. At White Pines he found they couldn't offer transportation the first year of operation because of funding limitations. If transportation is not offered, enrollment may be limit. This legislation will provide 80% of the transportation funds up front the first year and the final appropriation payment will be given in July. Senator Schroeder clarified that traditional public schools and charter schools can share transportation just as some private schools also share traditional public transportation.
MOTION: Representative Andersen made a motion to send S 1347 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation.
Mr. Paul Powell, Idaho Charter School Network, spoke in support of

S 1347, saying it could be made better if it applied to those charter schools already in operation.

The motion to send S 1347 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation carried by voice vote. Representative Andersen will carry S 1347 on the floor.
S 1348 Senator Schroeder introduced S 1348, stating that America believes we should be governed by elected officials. When he visited White Pines he asked how their Board of Directors are selected and they said the parents elect the Board and Colorado does the same. The Moscow Renaissance does not elect their Board and it has created many problems. The charter petition will spell out how elections will be held after the second year of operations.
Mr. Paul Powell, Idaho Charter School Network and Chairman of the Legislative Committee, spoke in strong opposition to S 1348. He referred to Section 33-5204(1), Idaho Code, which states "A charter school shall be organized and managed under the Idaho nonprofit corporation act." The boards we are talking about are not typical school boards of trustees, but boards of directors of a nonprofit corporation. The Board has many responsibilities; however, the primary role of the Board is to ensure that the charter school operates within the law and adheres to the charter document (Attachment 1). There is no evidence that a change to the election process will either improve student achievement or improve management of the charter schools. IACI also opposes S 1348.

Mr. Powell was asked if Board of Directors are compensated. Mr. Powell said he was not aware that they were, but was told by Mr. Henry that some are.

Mrs. Laurie Boeckel, spoke in support of S 1348. She said she is not an expert on all charter schools, but as a taxpayer she is concerned that we want to restrict votes. She mentioned being able to vote for a trustee or run against a trustee. She asked that we not let a few ruin charter schools for all in Idaho.
MOTION: Representative Lake moved to hold S 1348 in committee, saying it is not the end of the world if we don't act on this legislation this year.
SUBSTITUTE MOTION: Representative Nielsen made a substitute motion to hold S 1348 in committee time certain at the call of the chairman.

When Mr. Powell was asked to clarify how he would address the problem in Moscow, he said he personally feels it is a great idea to have parents vote, but he is reluctant to force a structure on schools that are operating well and succeeding.

A roll call vote was called for on the substitute motion to hold S 1348 in committee time certain at the call of the chairman. The motion passed 12 to 3. Chairman Barraclough and Representatives Lake, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, and Boe voted "Aye". Representatives Andersen, Naccarato, and Sayler voted "Nay".
S 1361 Dr. Bob West, Chief Deputy Superintendent, State Department of Education, presented S 1361. He indicated that the proposed amendment requires a petition to convert an existing school to charter school status or to create a new charter school and would require that the petition contain a copy of the articles of incorporation and the bylaws of a proposed nonprofit corporation that is being brought to the local school district for approval. Problems can result when these are not included in the petition (Attachment 2). There is no conflict with S 1444 or the amendments.
MOTION: Representative Cannon moved to send S 1361 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote. Representative Cannon will carry S 1361 on the floor.
S 1363 Dr. Bob West, Chief Deputy Superintendent, State Department of Education, presented S 1363, explaining that this legislation amends the Charter School Act, Idaho Code 33-5206, Requirements and Prohibitions Upon the Approval of a Charter School. This section describes in detail many of the requirements charter schools must meet after having been approved by a local school board or, on appeal by the State Board of Education or the new charter school commission. S 1363 amends subsection 4 of this statute to include the requirement that all charter schools are to employ teachers and administrators on written contract in the form approved by the state superintendent of public instruction, conditioned upon a valid certificate being held by such professional personnel at the time of entering upon the duties for which they are hired (Attachment 3). This legislation does not impact teachers who are teaching on alternative certificates.
MOTION: Representative Sayler moved to send S 1363 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. A brief discussion followed, and Dr. West clarified that even those these requirements are in Rule, it seems there are still problems because it is not spelled out in the charter school law. Instructional approach isn't conditioned by license or certification.
Mr. Paul Powell, Idaho Charter School Network, said they are neutral on this legislation. Section 33-5205 does state the qualifications required.
VOTE: A vote was called for on the motion to send S 1363 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote. Representative Sayler will carry S 1363 on the floor.
S 1351a Dr. Bob West, Chief Deputy Superintendent, State Department of Education, presented S 1351a, explaining this bill amends Idaho code 33-1208 that lists many items that are grounds to allow the State Board of Education ro revoke, suspend, or deny a teaching certificate, for having violated a lengthy list of standards of conduct and crimes that the legislature has determined to be grounds for a denial or revocation of a teaching certificate.

This legislation was requested by the Professional Standards Commission and adds to the list of items that are grounds for revocation, denial or probationary condition. The addition provides that one of those circumstances would be a previous conviction, finding of guilt, withheld judgment, or suspended sentence, in Idaho or any other state for any felony that would make the teacher unfit for the service of teaching our children in our schools, as found by a panel of peers and the Professional Standards Commission. An example of how this legislation would be applied can be found in Attachment 4.

MOTION: Representative Lake moved to send S 1351a to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation.
SUBSTITUTE MOTION: Representative Eberle made a substitute motion to hold S 1351a in committee, stating his concerns about the legislation being too inclusive.

The substitute motion failed on a voice vote.

MOTION ON ORIGINAL MOTION: A vote was called for on the original motion to send S 1351a to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote. Representative Eberle asked to be recorded as voting "Nay". Representative Lake will carry the bill on the floor.
S 1322 Senator Stennett introduced S 1322, explaining this legislation would allow the State Board of Education to raise the amount of the Robert R. Lee Promise Scholarship to $600 per semester. He said with the 118% increase in college fees, it is forcing low and moderate income students not to attend college. This is a smart investment for Idaho students. The State Board will only increase the amount of the scholarship if money is available. The fiscal impact of this legislation will be $780,000 to fund the entire amount. Approximately $500,000 is available in the scholarship fund should the State Board chose to use it. Ross Borden was contacted and said that the $500,000 is available, but this legislation was not taken before JFAC.

Senator Stennett was asked about Representative Block's Drug and Alcohol free legislation that was sent to his body and appeared to be held. He said he could not speak to that.

MOTION: Representative Andersen moved to send S 1322 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. Representative Boe clarified that the fiscal impact from Representative Block's legislation would not occur until 2009 where this legislation would become effective next year. Representative Jones explained that this legislation is not in competition with Representative Blocks. This legislation deals with inflationary increases and raises the amount on scholarships already authorized in code.

Dr. Thompson verified that students will receive $1,000 per year for the Promise Scholarship in FY 2005. This legislation proposes giving them an additional $200 per year as in inducement to encourage Idaho students to attend Idaho schools.

SUBSTITUTE MOTION: Representative Kulczyk made a substitute motion to hold S 1322 in committee, because he feels it undermines Representative Block's legislation. Again, Representative Jones said this is raising the dollar amount that is already spelled out in existing code. Representative Sayler agreed with Senator Stennett that this is a good inducement to have Idaho students attend Idaho colleges and universities. Representative Garrett said she needs further clarification on the amounts and whether the Drug Free scholarship is an additional amount or limited by this bill.
AMENDED SUBSTITUTE MOTION: Representative Nielsen made an amended substitute motion to hold

S 1322 in committee for time certain at the call of the chairman. Representative Boe pointed out that the legislation states the State Board may increase this amount if the money is available. The amended substitute motion failed by a voice vote.

VOTE ON THE SUBSTITUTE MOTION: Representative Kulczyk stated he feels Representative Block's legislation if a tremendous idea to help kids stay drug free. A vote was called for on the substitute motion to hold S 1322 and the motion failed.
VOTE ON THE ORIGINAL MOTION A vote was called for on the original motion to send S 1322 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation and the motion carried. Representative Jones will carry S 1322 on the floor.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee, the meeting was adjourned at 9:55 A.M.




DATE: March 20, 2004
TIME: 9:30 A.M.
PLACE: Room 406
MEMBERS: Chairman Barraclough, Vice Chairman Lake, Representatives Jones, Trail, Bradford, Block, Rydalch, Bauer, Cannon, Eberle, Garrett, Kulczyk, Nielsen, Bayer, Boe, Andersen, Naccarato, Sayler
ABSENT/

EXCUSED:

Representatives Bauer and Trail
GUESTS: Please see presenters highlighted below and the committee sign-in sheet.
Chairman Barraclough called the meeting to order at 9:37 A.M. He briefed the committee on the charter school legislation and the events of this past week. After numerous meetings the past few days, Chairman Barraclough said he had been given a personal agreement with the amendments. In the Senate Education Committee this morning the decision was made to send S 1444 with amendments to the Senate floor with no concurrence from the committee. Chairman Barraclough expressed his disappointment in that decision and also in the fact that some of the members of this committee were unable to support the charter school legislation.
MINUTES: The minutes of March 18 and 19, 2004 were reviewed. Representative Andersen moved to accept the minutes of March 19 as written. The motion carried. Representative Rydalch moved to accept the minutes of March 18 as written. The motion carried.
SCR 134 Representative Gagner presented SCR 134 to the committee, explaining that the 2003 Legislature adopted HCR 30 authorizing several higher education projects to be financed through the Idaho State Building Authority, including a new Health Care Education Building for Eastern Idaho Technical College.

The original cost was $6,360,000 plus a grant for $3,500,000 from the U.S. Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administration. If the terms of the proposed grant for $3.5 million are accepted, it would be substantially more costly to finance the state's portion with bonds through the Idaho State Building Authority. EDA is demanding that they are in the first position on the mortgage. The Governor and the Congressional delegation is working to get the EDA mortgage into the second position.

This resolution would authorize financing of the total project funds for the Health Care Education Building, estimated to be a total of $9,860,000, through the Idaho State Building Authority.

A question was asked about a grant versus a mortgage, and Representative Gagner explained that it is called a grant but is against the property with restrictions on what can and cannot be done.
MOTION: Representative Andersen moved to send SCR 134 to the floor with a DO PASS recommendation. The motion carried by voice vote.
Chairman Barraclough thanked the secretary and the page for the work they have done this session. The committee members also expressed their thanks.
ADJOURN: There being no further business to come before the committee this session, the committee sine died at 10:14 A.M.