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S1326..........................................................by EDUCATION CHARTER SCHOOLS - Amends existing law to eliminate certain limitations on the number of charters granted for charter schools; to further govern the applicability of state law; to require articles of incorporation and bylaws, election processes, employee requirements and admission procedures to be contained in the petition to establish a charter school; to specify additional requirements for approval; to require approval of the format of the contract for teachers and administrators; to further govern the charter appeal procedure; and to authorize advance appropriations for transportation costs. 02/16 Senate intro - 1st rdg - to printing 02/17 Rpt prt - to Educ
]]]] LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF IDAHO ]]]] Fifty-seventh Legislature Second Regular Session - 2004 IN THE SENATE SENATE BILL NO. 1326 BY EDUCATION COMMITTEE 1 AN ACT 2 RELATING TO CHARTER SCHOOLS; AMENDING SECTION 33-5202, IDAHO CODE, TO REVISE 3 THE STATEMENT OF LEGISLATIVE INTENT; AMENDING SECTION 33-5203, IDAHO CODE, 4 TO ELIMINATE CERTAIN LIMITATIONS ON THE NUMBER OF CHARTERS GRANTED FOR 5 CHARTER SCHOOLS; AMENDING SECTION 33-5204, IDAHO CODE, TO FURTHER GOVERN 6 THE OPERATION OF A CHARTER SCHOOL AND THE APPLICABILITY OF STATE LAW; 7 AMENDING SECTION 33-5205, IDAHO CODE, TO REQUIRE ARTICLES OF INCORPORATION 8 AND BYLAWS, ELECTION PROCESSES, QUALIFICATIONS OF EMPLOYEES AND ADMISSION 9 PROCEDURES TO BE CONTAINED IN THE PETITION TO ESTABLISH A CHARTER SCHOOL; 10 AMENDING SECTION 33-5206, IDAHO CODE, TO SPECIFY ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS 11 FOR APPROVAL AND TO REQUIRE APPROVAL OF THE FORMAT OF THE CONTRACT FOR 12 TEACHERS AND ADMINISTRATORS; AMENDING SECTION 33-5207, IDAHO CODE, TO FUR- 13 THER GOVERN CHARTER APPEAL PROCEDURE; AND AMENDING SECTION 33-5208, IDAHO 14 CODE, TO AUTHORIZE ADVANCE APPROPRIATION FOR TRANSPORTATION COSTS. 15 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Idaho: 16 SECTION 1. That Section 33-5202, Idaho Code, be, and the same is hereby 17 amended to read as follows: 18 33-5202. LEGISLATIVE INTENT. It is the intent of the legislature to pro- 19 vide opportunities for teachers, parents, students and community members to 20 establish and maintain public charter schools which operate independently from 21 the existing school district structure but within the existing public school 22 system as a method to accomplish all of the following: 23 (1) Improve student learning; 24 (2) Increase learning opportunities for all students, with special empha- 25 sis on expanded learning experiences for students; 26 (3) Include the use of different andinnovative teaching methods; 27 (4) Utilize virtual distance learning and on-line learning; 28 (5) Create new professional opportunities for teachers, including the 29 opportunity to be responsible for the learning program at the school site; 30 (6) Provide parents and students with expanded choices in the types of 31 educational opportunities that are available within the public school system; 32 (7) Hold the schools established under this chapter accountable for meet- 33 ing measurable student educational standards. 34 SECTION 2. That Section 33-5203, Idaho Code, be, and the same is hereby 35 amended to read as follows: 36 33-5203. AUTHORIZATION -- LIMITATIONS. (1) The creation of public charter 37 schools is hereby authorized. Charter schools shall be part of the state's 38 program of public education. 39 (2) It is the intent of the legislature that the number of charter40 schools which may be approved in each of the first five (5) years after the41 effective date of this act be limited in number and geographic distribution in2 1 accordance with the following:2 (a) Not more than sixty (60) schools may be approved in the first five3 (5) years after the effective date of this act, and4 (b) Not more than twelve (12) schools may be approved in any one (1)5 year, and6 (c) Not more than two (2) charters per year may be granted within an edu-7 cational classification region as established by the state board of educa-8 tion, and9 (d) Not more than one (1) charter may be granted for any one (1) school10 district in a year, and11 (e) No whole school district may be converted to a charter district or12 any configuration which includes all schools as charter schools.13 The legislature further finds that, notwithstanding the limitations of this14 subsection (2), if fewer than twelve (12) charters are approved by June 1 of a15 year, the unused allotments shall be assigned to a statewide pool for use by16 other requesting districts. Distributions from the pool shall be made by ran-17 dom drawing.18 (3)A charter school may be formed by creating a new school or converting 19 an existing public school to charter status. No charter shall be granted under 20 this chapter which authorizes the conversion of any private or parochial 21 school to a charter school. No charter shall be granted to or operated by a 22 for-profit entity. 23 SECTION 3. That Section 33-5204, Idaho Code, be, and the same is hereby 24 amended to read as follows: 25 33-5204. NONPROFIT CORPORATION -- LIABILITY -- INSURANCE. (1) A charter 26 school shall be organized and managedunder the Idaho nonprofit corporation 27 act. The board of directors of a charter school shall be deemed public agents28 servants authorized by a public school district or the state board of educa- 29 tion to control the charter school, but shall function independently of any 30 school board of trustees, except as provided in the charter, and shall be sub- 31 ject to the provisions of sections 33-506 and 33-507, Idaho Code. A charter 32 school shall be considered a public school for all purposes and shall comply 33 with the audit reporting requirements of section 33-701 6., Idaho Code, and 34 shall annually file financial and statistical reports as required in section 35 33-701 7., Idaho Code. For the purposes of section 59-1302(15), Idaho Code, a 36 charter school created pursuant to this chapter shall be deemed a governmental 37 entity. Pursuant to the provisions of section 63-3622O, Idaho Code, sales to 38 or purchases by a public charter school are exempt from payment of the sales 39 and use tax. A charter school and the board of directors of a charter school 40 are subject to the provisions of chapter 23, title 67, and chapter 3, title 9, 41 Idaho Code, in the same manner that a public school and the board of school 42 trustees are subject to those provisions. 43 (2) A charter school may sue or be sued, purchase, receive, hold and con- 44 vey real and personal property for school purposes, and borrow money for such 45 purposes, to the same extent and on the same conditions as a public school 46 district, and its employees, directors and officers shall enjoy the same immu- 47 nities as employees, directors and officers of public school districts and 48 other public schools. The approving authority of a charter school shall have 49 no liability for the acts, omissions, debts or other obligations of a charter 50 school, except as may be provided in an agreement or contract with such 51 charter school. 52 (3) Nothing in this chapter shall prevent the board of directors of a 53 charter school , operating as a nonprofit corporation,from borrowing money to 3 1 finance the purchase of school building facilities. Subject to the terms of a 2 contractual agreement between the board and a lender, and approval of the 3 state superintendent of public instruction, nothing herein shall prevent the 4 board from using the facility as collateral for the loan. 5 (4) Charter schools shall secure insurance for liability and property 6 loss. 7 SECTION 4. That Section 33-5205, Idaho Code, be, and the same is hereby 8 amended to read as follows: 9 33-5205. PETITION TO ESTABLISH CHARTER SCHOOL. (1) Any person may request 10 the board of trustees of a school district to establish a charter school, or 11 to convert an existing school within the school district to charter status. A 12 petition to convert an existing school shall be submitted to the board of 13 trustees of the district for review after the petition has been signed by not 14 less than sixty percent (60%) of the teachers currently employed by the school 15 district at the school to be converted, and by one (1) or more parents or 16 guardians of not less than sixty percent (60%) of the students currently 17 attending the school to be converted. A petition to establish a new charter 18 school shall be submitted to the board of trustees of the district for review 19 after the petition has been signed by not less than thirty (30) qualified 20 electors of the district. Each petition submitted shall contain a copy of the 21 articles of incorporation and the bylaws of the corporation, which shall be 22 deemed incorporated into the petition. The state department of education shall 23 establish uniform guidelines for the petition process which shall serve as a 24 model for charter petitioners to follow. 25 (2) Not later than thirty (30) days after receiving a petition signed in 26 accordance with the specifications in subsection (1) of this section, the 27 board of trustees shall hold a meeting open to the public for the purpose of 28 discussing the provisions of the charter, at which time the board shall con- 29 sider the merits of the petition and the level of employee and parental sup- 30 port for the petition. Following review of the petition and the public hear- 31 ing, the board of trustees shall either grant or deny the charter within sixty 32 (60) days of receipt of the petition, provided however, that the date may be 33 extended by an additional sixty (60) days if the petition fails to meet the 34 signature requirements or fails to contain all of the information required in 35 this section , or if both parties agree to the extension. 36 (3) A board of trustees may grant a charter for operation of a school 37 under the provisions of this chapter if it determines that the petition con- 38 tains the number of signatures required, a statement of each of the conditions 39 described in subsection (4) of this section, and descriptions of all of the 40 following: 41 (a) The educational program of the charter school, designed among other 42 things, to identify what it means to be an "educated person" in the 43 twenty-first century, and how learning best occurs. The goals identified 44 in the program shall include how all educational thoroughness standards as 45 defined in section 33-1612, Idaho Code, shall be fulfilled. 46 (b) The measurable student educational standards identified for use by 47 the charter school. "Student educational standards" for the purpose of 48 this chapter means the extent to which all students of the charter school 49 demonstrate they have attained the skills and knowledge specified as goals 50 in the school's educational program. 51 (c) The method by which student progress in meeting those student educa- 52 tional standards is to be measured. 53 (d) A provision by which students of the charter school will be tested 4 1 with the same standardized tests as other Idaho public school students. 2 (e) A provision which ensures that the charter school shall be state 3 accredited as provided by rule of the state board of education. 4 (f) The governance structure of the charter school including, but not 5 limited to, the person or entity who shall be legally accountable for the 6 operation of the school, the process to be used for holding open election 7 of the board of directors following the second year of operation, and the 8 process to be followed by the charter school to ensure parental involve- 9 ment. 10 (g) The qualifications to be met by individuals employed by the charter 11 school. Instructional staff shall be certified teachers as defined in sec- 12 tions 33-1001(12) and 33-1201, Idaho Code, or may apply for a waiver or 13 any of the limited certification options as provided by rule of the state 14 board of education. The administrator responsible for supervision and 15 evaluation of the teaching staff shall hold a valid Idaho school 16 administrator's certificate. 17 (h) The procedures that the charter school will follow to ensure the 18 health and safety of students and staff. 19 (i) Admission procedures, including provision for overenrollment. Initial 20 admission procedures for a new charter school, not a renewal, including21 may provide that not more than ten percent (10%) of the available capacity 22 in each grade may be reserved for the children of the original charter 23 school founders and full-time certificated employees of the school. The 24 charter shall describe its provision for overenrollment, which specifies25 shall specify that admission for positions not reserved will be determined 26 by lottery or other random method. If initial capacity is insufficient to 27 enroll all pupils who submit a timely application, preference shall be 28 given in the following order: first, to siblings of pupils already29 selected by the lottery or other random method; and second,by an equita- 30 ble selection process such as by lottery or other random method. If capac- 31 ity is insufficient to enroll all pupils for subsequent school terms, who 32 submit a timely application, preference shall be given in the following 33 order: first, to pupils returning to the charter school in the second or 34 any subsequent year of its operation; second, to siblings of pupils 35 already enrolled in the charter school; and third, an equitable selection 36 process such as by lottery or other random method. In all cases where a 37 lottery or other random method is utilized, it shall be conducted by the 38 granting school district, or an independent third party mutually agreed to 39 by the granting district board and the board of the charter school. 40 (j) The manner in which an annual audit of the financial and programmatic 41 operations of the charter school is to be conducted. 42 (k) The procedures by which students can be suspended, expelled and 43 reenrolled. 44 (l) A provision which ensures all staff members of the charter school 45 will be covered by the public employee retirement system, federal social 46 security, unemployment insurance and worker's compensation insurance. 47 (m) The public school attendance alternative for students residing within 48 the school district who choose not to attend the charter school if the 49 proposed charter school is a conversion of an existing school to charter 50 status. 51 (n) A description of the transfer rights of any employee choosing to work 52 in a charter school and the rights of such employees to return to any non- 53 charter school in the school district after employment at a charter 54 school. 55 (o) A provision which ensures that the staff of the charter school shall 5 1 be considered a separate unit for purposes of collective bargaining. 2 (p) The procedures to be followed by the charter school and the entity 3 granting the charter to resolve disputes relating to provisions of the 4 charter. 5 (q) The manner by which special education services will be provided to 6 students with disabilities who are eligible pursuant to the federal indi- 7 viduals with disabilities education act. 8 (r) The manner by which eligible students from the charter school shall 9 be allowed to participate in dual enrollment in noncharter schools within 10 the district as provided for in chapter 2, title 33, Idaho Code, and the 11 manner by which payment shall be made to the school district by the 12 charter school for dually enrolled students in curricular and extra- 13 curricular activities. 14 (s) The procedures by which the charter school shall ensure all students 15 within the granting district will have equal access to the charter school, 16 including, but not limited to: communications in native and alternate lan- 17 guage, methods by which enrollment procedures are communicated to the fam- 18 ilies within the granting district, means for providing transportation, 19 food services, and services for English language learners. The primary 20 attendance area shall be entirely within the boundaries of the authorizing 21 school district, and admission preference as described in section 22 33-5206(1), Idaho Code, shall be given to students residing in the primary 23 attendance area. The primary attendance area shall be a single unit, with 24 no exclusions of neighbors or homes within the area. 25 (4) The petitioner shall provide information regarding the proposed oper- 26 ation and potential effects of the school including, but not limited to, the 27 facilities to be utilized by the school, the manner in which administrative 28 services of the school are to be provided and the potential civil liability 29 effects upon the school and upon the district. 30 SECTION 5. That Section 33-5206, Idaho Code, be, and the same is hereby 31 amended to read as follows: 32 33-5206. REQUIREMENTS AND PROHIBITIONS UPON APPROVAL OF A CHARTER SCHOOL. 33 (1) In addition to any other requirements imposed in this chapter, a charter 34 school shall be nonsectarian in its programs, affiliations, admission poli- 35 cies, employment practices, and all other operations, shall not charge 36 tuition, levy taxes or issue bonds, and shall not discriminate against any 37 student on any basis prohibited by the federal or state constitutions or any 38 federal, state or local law. Admission to a charter school shall not be deter- 39 mined according to the place of residence of the student, or of the student's 40 parent or guardian within the district, except that a new orconversion 41 charter school established under the provisions of this chapter shall adopt 42 and maintain a policy giving admission preference to students who reside 43 within the attendance area of that school. 44 (2) No board of trustees shall require any employee of the school dis- 45 trict to be involuntarily assigned to work in a charter school. 46 (3) Certified teachers in a charter school shall be considered public 47 school teachers. Educational experience shall accrue for service in a charter 48 school and such experience shall be counted by any school district to which 49 the teacher returns after employment in a charter school. 50 (4) No board of trustees shall require any student enrolled in the school 51 district to attend a charter school. 52 (5) Upon approval of the petition by the board of trustees, the peti- 53 tioner shall provide written notice of that approval, including a copy of the 6 1 petition, to the state board of education. For the purpose of implementing2 the provisions of section 33-5203(2), Idaho Code, the state board of education3 shall assign a number to each petition it receives. Petitions shall be num-4 bered based on the chronological order in which notice of the approved peti-5 tion is received by the state board of education.6 (6) Each charter school shall annually submit a report to the local board 7 of trustees which approved its charter. In the case of a new charter school 8 whose charter was granted by the state board of education pursuant to section 9 33-5207, Idaho Code, the annual report shall be submitted to the state board 10 of education. The report shall contain the audit of the fiscal and 11 programmatic operations as required in section 33-5205(3)(j), Idaho Code, a 12 report on student progress based on the charter school's student educational 13 standards identified in section 33-5205(3)(b), Idaho Code, and a copy of the 14 charter school's accreditation report. 15 (7) Charter school teachers and administrators shall be employed annually 16 on a written contract in a form approved by the state superintendent of public 17 instruction. 18 SECTION 6. That Section 33-5207, Idaho Code, be, and the same is hereby 19 amended to read as follows: 20 33-5207. CHARTER APPEAL PROCEDURE. (1) If a local school board of 21 trustees grants a charter for the conversion of an existing school within the 22 school district over the objection of thirty (30) or more persons or employees 23 of the district, or denies a petition for the establishment of a new charter 24 school for any reason including, but not limited to, failure by the petitioner 25 to follow procedures or for failure to provide required information, then such 26 decisions may be appealed to the state superintendent of public instruction, 27 at the request of persons opposing the conversion of an existing school, or at 28 the request of the petitioner whose request for a new charter was denied. 29 (2) The state superintendent of public instruction shall select a hearing 30 officer within thirty (30) days to review the action of the local board of 31 trustees. The hearing officer shall, within thirty (30) days of the request32 selection, review the charter petition and convene a public hearing regarding 33 the charter requestpetition. Within ten (10) days of the public hearing, the 34 hearing officer shall submit a written recommendation to the local board of 35 trustees and to the persons requesting the review. 36 (3) Within thirty (30) days following receipt of the hearing officer's 37 written recommendation, the local board of trustees shall hold a public hear- 38 ing. Within ten (10) days of this hearing, the local board of trustees shall 39 either affirm or reverse its initial decision. The board's decision shall be 40 in writing and contain findings which explain the reasons for its decision. 41 (4) If, upon reconsideration of a decision to approve the conversion of 42 an existing school to a charter school, the local school board: 43 (a) Affirms its initial decision to authorize such conversion, the 44 charter shall be granted and there shall be no further appeal. 45 (b) Reverses its initial decision and denies the conversion, that deci- 46 sion is final and there shall be no further appeal. 47 (5) If, upon reconsideration of a decision to deny establishment of a new 48 charter school, the local school board: 49 (a) Reverses its initial decision and approves the new charter school, 50 the charter shall be granted and there shall be no further appeal. 51 (b) Affirms its initial decision denying the new charter school, the 52 petitioners for the establishment of the new charter school may appeal to 53 the state board of education only if the school board's decision 7 1 contradicts the hearing officer's findings. The state board of education 2 shall hold a public hearing at its next regular meeting and shallmay 3 approve the charter for the establishment of a new charter school if it 4 determines that the local board of trustees failed to appropriately con- 5 sider the charter requestpetition, or if the denial of the local board 6 acted in anof trustees was arbitrary. manner in denying the request.Such 7 hearing shall be conducted pursuant to procedures as set by the state 8 board of education. 9 (6) A charter school for which a charter is granted by the state board of 10 education shall qualify fully as a charter school for all funding and other 11 purposes of this chapter. The state board of education shall assume the role 12 of the chartering entity. Employees of a charter school authorized by the 13 state board of education shall not be considered employees of the local school 14 district nor of the state board of education. 15 (7) The finding of the state board of education shall be subject to 16 review pursuant to chapter 52, title 67, Idaho Code. Nothing in this section 17 shall prevent a petitioner from bringing a new petition at a later time. 18 (8) There shall be no appeal of a decision by a local school board of 19 trustees which denies the conversion of an existing school within that dis- 20 trict to a charter school, or which grants a petition for the establishment of 21 a new charter school. 22 SECTION 7. That Section 33-5208, Idaho Code, be, and the same is hereby 23 amended to read as follows: 24 33-5208. CHARTER SCHOOL FINANCIAL SUPPORT. From the state educational 25 support program the state department of education shall make the following 26 apportionment to each charter school for each fiscal year based on attendance 27 figures submitted in a manner and time as required by the department of educa- 28 tion: 29 (1) Per student support. Computation of support units for each charter 30 school shall be calculated as if it were a separate school according to the 31 schedules in section 33-1002 6., Idaho Code, except that charter schools with 32 fewer than one hundred (100) secondary ADA shall use a divisor of twelve (12) 33 and the minimum units shall not apply. Funding from the state educational sup- 34 port program shall be equal to the total distribution factor, plus the salary- 35 based apportionment provided in chapter 10, title 33, Idaho Code. 36 (2) Special education. For each student enrolled in the charter school 37 who is entitled to special education services, the state and federal funds 38 from the exceptional child education program for that student that would have 39 been apportioned for that student to the school district in which the charter 40 school is located. 41 (3) Alternative school support. Charter schools may qualify under the 42 provisions of sections 33-1002 and 33-1002C, Idaho Code, provided the charter 43 school meets the necessary statutory requirements, and students qualify for 44 attendance at an alternative school as provided by rule of the state board of 45 education. 46 (4) Transportation support. Support shall be paid to the charter school 47 as provided in chapter 15, title 33, Idaho Code, and section 33-1006, Idaho 48 Code. Each charter school shall furnish the department with an enrollment 49 count as of the first Friday in November, of charter school students living 50 more than one and one-half (1 1/2) miles from the school. For charter schools 51 in the initial year of operation, the petition shall include a proposal for 52 transportation services with an estimated first year cost. The state depart- 53 ment of education is authorized to include in the annual appropriation to the 8 1 charter school eighty percent (80%) of the estimated transportation cost. The 2 final appropriation payment in July shall reflect eighty-five percent (85%) of 3 the actual cost. 4 (5) Payment schedule. The state department of education is authorized to 5 make an advance payment of twenty-five percent (25%) of a charter school's 6 estimated annual apportionment for its first year of operation, and each year 7 thereafter, provided the charter school has an increase of student population 8 in any given year of twenty (20) students or more, to assist the school with 9 initial start-up costs or payroll obligations. 10 (a) For a state charter school to receive the advance payment, the school 11 shall submit its anticipated fall membership for each grade level to the 12 state department of education by June 1. 13 (b) Using the figures provided by the school, the state department of 14 education shall determine an estimated annual apportionment from which the 15 amount of the advance payment shall be calculated. Advance payment shall 16 be made to the school on or after July 1 but no later than July 31. 17 (c) All subsequent payments, taking into account the one-time advance 18 payment made for the first year of operation, shall be made to the charter 19 school in the same manner as other public schools in accordance with the 20 provisions of section 33-1009, Idaho Code. 21 A charter school shall comply with all applicable fiscal requirements of law, 22 except that the following provisions shall not be applicable to charter 23 schools: section 33-1003B, Idaho Code, relating to guaranteed minimum support; 24 that portion of section 33-1004, Idaho Code, relating to reduction of the 25 administrative and instructional staff allowance when there is a discrepancy 26 between the number allowed and the number actually employed; and section 27 33-1004E, Idaho Code, for calculation of district staff indices. 28 (6) Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to prohibit any private 29 person or organization from providing funding or other financial assistance to 30 the establishment or operation of a charter school. 31 (7) Nothing in this chapter shall prevent a charter school from applying 32 for federal grant moneys.
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE RS 13989 Section 33-5202 Amends legislative intent to allow for charters of similar methods and curriculum within the same district. Section 33-5203 Amends Idaho code to allow for no limit on the number of charters granted in the state. Section 33-5204 Clarifies the law to recognize that charter schools will be organized under the Idaho nonprofit corporation act, but will be managed as a public school entity, and that the board of a charter school will be subject to provisions of Idaho code governing public school trustees. It further identifies that while charter schools may borrow money for the purchase of school facilities, the terms and contractual arrangements of any loan shall be subject to review by the state superintendent of public instruction. Section 33-5205 Amends and clarifies several sections dealing with the items to be addressed in the charter petition, including; bylaws of the charter school, process to be used for board elections, the process for admission procedures, provision for oversight of methods used to randomly select students, provision for payment for dual enrolled students, the procedures to ensure equal access to all students, and the attendance boundaries for the charter school. Section 33-5206 Clarifies that charter school teachers and administrators shall be contracted on a form approved by the state superintendent of public instruction. Section 33-5207 Amends the appeal process to recognize the validity of the hearing officer's findings. Section 33-5208 Allows for the payment of bus services in the first year of a charter school's operations. FISCAL IMPACT None Contact Name: Bob Henry Phone: 466-2662 Name: Jon Allen Phone: 468-4600 STATEMENT OF PURPOSE/FISCAL NOTE S 1326