Digest of Bills - 2012

EDUCATION PUBLIC SCHOOLS

S.B. 12-36 Surveys - assessments - parental consent - exceptions. Current law prohibits an employee of a school or school district (employee) from requiring a student to participate in a survey, analysis, or evaluation (document) that addresses or requests certain information unless the student's parent provides written consent for the student's participation. The act adds assessments to the documents for which parental consent is required, but specifically excludes assessments administered to measure students' mastery of school district or state model content standards. In addition to the existing list of information, the employee must obtain parental consent if the document requests a social security number or information concerning the student's or parent's religious beliefs or practices. For a parent's consent to be valid, the employee must make a written copy of the document available for inspection at convenient locations and times. Each public school and school district may allow only minimal use of students' academic time for organizations to gather information from students. The act does not limit a school district's ability to administer a suicide assessment or threat assessment.

APPROVED by Governor June 8, 2012
EFFECTIVE August 8, 2012

NOTE: This act was passed without a safety clause. For further explanation concerning the effective date, see page vi of this digest.

 

S.B. 12-51 School districts - boards of cooperative services - contracts. The act allows each school district and board of cooperative services (BOCES) to review and revise the policies and procedures it has in place for contracting for services, including educational services, activities, or undertakings and authorizes the school district or BOCES to adopt a policy requiring competitive bidding on contracts for professional services, other than instructional services. The policy may:

APPROVED by Governor May 24, 2012
EFFECTIVE August 8, 2012

NOTE: This act was passed without a safety clause. For further explanation concerning the effective date, see page vi of this digest.

 

S.B. 12-57 Teachers - authorizations - native American languages. The act creates a teacher authorization for native American language and culture instruction (authorization). The native American languages eligible under such an authorization must be from a federally recognized tribe.

Additionally, the act allows school district boards of education to grant general education or world language credit to a student after successful completion of native American language course work.

APPROVED by Governor April 16, 2012
EFFECTIVE August 8, 2012

NOTE: This act was passed without a safety clause. For further explanation concerning the effective date, see page vi of this digest.

 

S.B. 12-61 Charter schools - application - reauthorization - revocation. The act adds to the minimum requirements for district and institute charter school applications. The new requirements are:

The act clarifies when a charter application is considered filed with a school district board or with the state charter school institute board (authorizer). The act also extends by 15 days the annual period for filing district charter applications and the length of time an authorizer has to decide whether to authorize a charter. The act streamlines and clarifies the circumstances and timing by which an authorizer may request and the applicant may provide any information that is missing from a charter application. The act extends the allowable initial term of a district charter school's charter to 4 years.

The act requires an authorizer annually to review the charter school's academic and financial performance. The results of the annual meetings form the basis for the eventual decision to revoke or renew the charter school's charter contract. The authorizer provides feedback to the charter school and includes the results of the review in the body of evidence the authorizer uses when deciding whether to renew or revoke the charter and in renegotiating the charter contract. Each authorizer must adopt procedures and timelines for the charter renewal process. At least 15 days before an authorizer considers whether to revoke or renew a charter contract, the authorizer's staff must provide written recommendations concerning the decision to the authorizer and the charter school. If a charter school operates under a turnaround plan for a second consecutive school year, it must meet certain reporting requirements, and the authorizer may revoke the charter if it finds the charter school is not making sufficient improvement. Each authorizer must adopt a policy

that establishes procedures for closing a charter school when the charter contract is revoked or not renewed.

APPROVED by Governor April 13, 2012
EFFECTIVE April 13, 2012

 

S.B. 12-67 Charter schools - for-profit entities - nonprofit entities. Effective July 1, 2013, the act requires each charter school that was initially chartered on or after August 6, 1997, to incorporate as a nonprofit corporation.

The act prohibits a board of education of a school district or the state charter school institute board (authorizer) from approving a charter application submitted by, or entering into a charter contract with, a for-profit entity. Beginning September 1, 2012, an authorizer may not renew a charter or charter contract with a for-profit entity. A charter school may contract with a nonprofit, not-for-profit, or for-profit education management provider so long as the charter school maintains an independent governing board.

APPROVED by Governor April 23, 2012
EFFECTIVE August 8, 2012

NOTE: This act was passed without a safety clause. For further explanation concerning the effective date, see page vi of this digest.

 

S.B. 12-68 School district - boards - powers and duties - children's nutrition - no trans fats in school foods - appropriation. The act prohibits a school of a school district, a district charter school, or an institute charter school from making available to a student a food item that contains any amount of industrially produced trans fat. The prohibition applies to all food and beverages made available to a student on school grounds during each school day and extended school day, including but not limited to a food or beverage item made available to a student in a school cafeteria, school store, vending machine, or other food service entity existing upon school grounds. The prohibition does not apply to any food or beverage that is made available to a student as part of a meal program of the United States department of agriculture; that is made available to a student as part of any fundraising effort conducted by one or more students, teachers, or parents; or that is donated to the school to be given to a student for consumption off of school premises and not during the school day.

The act appropriates to the department of education, for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2012, the sum of $6,800 for allocation to the federal nutrition programs for consulting services related to the implementation of the act.

APPROVED by Governor June 4, 2012
EFFECTIVE August 8, 2012

NOTE: This act was passed without a safety clause. For further explanation concerning the effective date, see page vi of this digest.

 

S.B. 12-121 Charter schools - BEST program - grants - definition of at-risk student - waivers - state charter school institute appropriations. Prior to the passage of the act, a charter school that decided to apply for financial assistance through the building excellent schools today (BEST) program was required to give its authorizer a notice of intent to apply at least 3 months before the application deadline. The act extends the time for the notice to 4 months. The public school capital construction board (BEST board) reviews each application and calculates how much an applicant must provide in matching moneys by applying several factors. The act changes the factors that apply to charter school applicants. The amount of match moneys calculated for charter schools must be comparable to the amounts calculated for school districts in the same year.

The act creates the charter school matching moneys loan program (loan program) to assist charter schools in obtaining up to 50% of the matching moneys required for financial assistance through the BEST program. To be eligible to participate, a charter school must qualify for payments from the state charter school debt reserve fund. An eligible charter school that participates in the loan program must comply with several requirements, including authorizing the state treasurer to withhold the amount of the loan payments from moneys otherwise payable to the charter school and putting 6 months of loan payments into escrow for the benefit of the state. The loans are funded through the lease-purchase agreements the state treasurer enters into for the charter schools' construction projects.

If a charter school chooses to apply for a state or federal, nonformulaic grant, other than a grant under the federal special education law, the state charter school institute (institute), at the charter school's request, may act as the local education agency and fiscal agent for the charter school for purposes of grant management and liability.

The act clarifies the definition of "at-risk student" for purposes of the institute statutes. The state board of education currently, by rule, automatically waives certain rules and statutes for charter schools. The act clarifies that these automatic waivers apply to institute charter schools.

The act allows the institute to retain the full 3% of each institute charter school's per pupil revenues until the end-of-year balance of the account to which these moneys are credited exceeds a certain amount. Rather than the institute being subject to annual appropriations, the act continuously appropriates operational moneys to the institute.

APPROVED by Governor May 11, 2012
EFFECTIVE May 11, 2012

 

S.B. 12-160 Educational accountability - Colorado state advisory council for parent involvement in education. The act amends provisions concerning the membership of the Colorado state advisory council for parent involvement in education (council) appointed by the state board of education as follows:

The act eliminates the requirement that one of the two persons appointed by the executive director of the department of higher education have expertise in implementing an approved educator preparation program at an institution of higher education in this state. The act also removes the requirement that one of these persons shall have expertise in the secondary-to-higher-education transition programs operated within the state.

For the purposes of membership of school accountability committees, the act defines "student populations that are significantly represented within the school" to mean student populations that each constitute at least 10 percent of the total population of students in the school.

For the purposes of membership of school district accountability committees, the act defines "student populations that are significantly represented within the school district" to mean student populations that each constitute at least 10 percent of the total population of students in the school district.

APPROVED by Governor May 24, 2012
EFFECTIVE May 24, 2012

 

H.B. 12-1013 Middle-school grades - interventions - parent involvement. The act directs school districts to consider adopting procedures by which the public schools of the school district use available data to identify and provide intervention services to students in grades 6 through 9 who are exhibiting behaviors that indicate the students are at increased risk of dropping out of school. Institute charter schools are also directed to consider adopting procedures to identify and provide intervention services to this population of students.

If the school district or institute charter school that adopts the procedures identifies a student who is at increased risk of dropping out of school, it must notify the student's parent and explain the interventions it intends to implement. The parent may approve or reject the interventions, and, following approval, may direct the school district or institute charter school to terminate the interventions at any time. A parent may contact a school district or institute charter school and request interventions for his or her child.

APPROVED by Governor March 16, 2012
EFFECTIVE August 8, 2012

NOTE: This act was passed without a safety clause. For further explanation concerning the effective date, see page vi of this digest.

 

H.B. 12-1043 Concurrent enrollment - students who graduate early. Under the act, each public school, in developing an individual career and academic plan for each student, will inform the student and the student's parent or legal guardian concerning concurrent enrollment and, at the student's or parent's or legal guardian's request, assist the student in course planning to enable him or her to concurrently enroll.

In considering applications for concurrent enrollment, a district superintendent, the superintendent's designee, or the chief administrator of a charter school or high school of a board of cooperative services must give priority consideration to qualified students who, by the time they would concurrently enroll, will have completed the high school graduation requirements.

APPROVED by Governor May 24, 2012
EFFECTIVE August 8, 2012

NOTE: This act was passed without a safety clause. For further explanation concerning the effective date, see page vi of this digest.

 

H.B. 12-1090 Pupil enrollment count day - defined - exceptions. For the purpose of determining the pupil enrollment count of each public school of the state, the act defines "pupil enrollment count day" as October 1 of each year, with the following exceptions:

The act replaces existing statutory references to "October 1" with "pupil enrollment count day" as needed.

APPROVED by Governor March 22, 2012
EFFECTIVE March 22, 2012

 

H.B. 12-1124 Digital learning in Colorado - study. The act directs the department of education (department) to commission a study of the issues surrounding integration of digital learning into the statewide system of public education in Colorado. The department will select a Colorado-based entity to complete the study. The study is funded by gifts, grants, or donations. If the department does not receive sufficient moneys to complete the study, it will not commission the study. The study will be completed and submitted to the state board of education, the governor, and the education committees of the general assembly by January 31, 2013.

APPROVED by Governor May 24, 2012
EFFECTIVE May 24, 2012

 

H.B. 12-1146 Concurrent enrollment - dropout recovery programs. The act authorizes a community college, including a junior district college, to agree with a local education provider to create a dropout recovery program through which a student who has dropped out of high school or who is at risk of dropping out of high school can concurrently enroll in the community college and the local education provider to complete his or her high school graduation requirements. The student attends classes exclusively at the community college, and all of the credits he or she earns count toward high school graduation. The dropout recovery program differs from the usual concurrent enrollment program with regard to the student's age and the number and type of course credits authorized.

The community college and the local education provider enter into an agreement that specifies many aspects of the dropout recovery program, including the tuition rate the local education provider will pay on the student's behalf, which rate cannot exceed the student's share of tuition at a community college. The local education provider will include the student in its pupil enrollment, and the community college, and the local education provider may include additional financial provisions in the agreement.

APPROVED by Governor May 17, 2012
EFFECTIVE May 17, 2012

 

H.B. 12-1201 School finance - total program funding - 2011-12 fiscal year adjustments. The general assembly recognizes that increases in the funded pupil count and the number of at-risk students have increased the amount of total program funding for the 2011-12 budget year. Increases in the amount of property tax and specific ownership tax revenues available to school districts have also decreased the amount of the state share for total program funding for the 2011-12 budget year. Based on these circumstances, the act increases the minimum level of total program funding for the 2011-12 budget year and sets the minimum level of total program funding for the 2012-13 budget year.

The act adjusts the appropriations in the 2011-12 long bill for total program funding and hold-harmless full-day kindergarten funding.

APPROVED by Governor March 1, 2012
EFFECTIVE March 1, 2012

 

H.B. 12-1212 On-line education programs - authorization of on-line education programs by a BOCES. Under current law, a board of cooperative services (BOCES) may authorize either a single-district or a multi-district on-line educational program. The act permits a BOCES to authorize only a multi-district program.

APPROVED by Governor March 24, 2012
EFFECTIVE July 1, 2012

 

H.B. 12-1238 Early literacy education - READ plans - advancement to next grade level - early literacy fund - appropriations. The act repeals the"Colorado Basic Literacy Act" on July 1, 2013, and replaces it with the "Colorado READ Act". Each school district, charter school, and board of cooperative services (local education provider) that enrolls students in kindergarten or first, second, or third grade (early grades) must provide instructional programs and support in reading to ensure that, by the time a student finishes third grade, the student's reading skills are high enough to enable the student to achieve the standards and expectations for fourth grade and beyond.

The state board of education (state board) will promulgate rules that establish the minimum reading competency skill levels for each of the early grades. The department of education (department) will adopt a procedure to collect and review reading assessments, instructional programming in reading, and professional development programs. The department will review the assessments and recommend assessments that meet specified criteria to the state board for approval. The department will create a list of the approved reading assessments that local education providers will use to measure students' reading skills in the early grades and diagnose students' reading skill deficiencies. The department will also create an advisory list of recommended instructional programming in reading that meets specified criteria and a list of recommended professional development programs. The department must have the list of approved assessments available by April 1, 2013, and the advisory lists of recommended instructional programming and professional development programs available by July 1, 2013. The department will continue to review assessments, instructional programming, and professional development programs and add the assessments that the state board approves to the approved assessment list and add appropriate items to the lists of recommended instructional programming and recommended professional development programs.

Beginning in the spring semester of the 2012-13 school year, each local education provider will begin assessing students in each of the early grades and diagnosing students' specific reading skill deficiencies. If a student's reading skills are below the minimum reading competency skill level, the student has a significant reading deficiency.

Beginning in the 2013-14 school year, if a student has a significant reading deficiency in one of the early grades, the student's teacher and any other personnel selected by the local education provider will, if possible, meet with the student's parent to communicate and discuss specified information and create a reading to ensure academic development plan (READ plan) for the student. The information will include notice that, if the student continues to have a significant reading deficiency at the end of the school year, state law requires the parent, the teacher, and other personnel to meet and consider retention as an intervention strategy and determine whether the student, despite the significant reading deficiency, will be able to maintain adequate academic progress at the next grade level. The local education provider will ensure the parent receives a copy of the READ plan.

A student's READ plan must include a description of the student's specific reading skill deficiencies, goals and benchmarks for achieving reading competency, the specific intervention instruction the teacher will use to help the student progress, and the specific strategies the parent is encouraged to use at home to help the student progress. The READ plan and documentation supporting the READ plan and the student's progress in implementing the plan will be included in the student's permanent academic record.

If a student's reading skills are below grade level, but the student does not have a significant reading deficiency, the local education provider must provide interventions to the student through the response to intervention framework. If a student has a significant reading deficiency, the student's READ plan will include intervention instruction provided through the response to intervention framework. If the student is identified as having a disability, the local education provider will integrate into the student's individualized education program (IEP), as appropriate, the intervention instruction to address the student's reading issues, in lieu of creating a READ plan. The teacher will continue to implement and update the READ plan until the student achieves reading competency.

A student who continues to have a significant reading deficiency in second or subsequent consecutive school years must receive increased reading intervention instruction and supports to improve his or her reading competency.

If, at the end of an early grade school year, a student has a significant reading deficiency, state law requires the parent, the teacher, and other personnel to meet and consider retention as an intervention strategy and determine whether the student, despite the significant reading deficiency, will be able to maintain adequate academic progress at the next grade level. The student's teacher will send the student's parent written notice that the teacher, the parent, and other personnel from the local education provider must meet to decide whether the student will advance. After sending the notice, the personnel from the local education provider will schedule, or make documented attempts to schedule, the meeting. If the parent does not attend a meeting, the teacher and personnel from the local education provider will decide whether the student will advance.

If there is a meeting, the student's parent and teacher and personnel from the local education provider will communicate and discuss specified information with the parent and decide, based on the student's body of evidence and the likelihood that the student will be able to make adequate academic progress, whether the student will advance to the next grade level. The parent will have the final decision as to whether the student advances; except that, beginning in the 2016-17 school year, if the student is finishing third grade and the parent, or the teacher and other personnel if the parent does not attend the meeting, decide the student will advance to fourth grade even though the student has a significant reading deficiency, the superintendent of the school district or a designee, or the school principal if the student is enrolled in a charter school or a school operated by a board of cooperative services, will decide whether the student advances. The local education provider will ensure that the parent and the superintendent or principal receive a written statement of the decisions made concerning whether the student advances and that the written statement is included in the student's academic record. The local education provider will remove the statement from the student's academic record when the student achieves reading competency.

A student is not subject to a decision about whether to advance to the next grade level if the student has an IEP and is eligible to take the alternative statewide assessment or has a disability that substantially impacts the student's progress in developing reading skills; is an English language learner, and the student's significant reading deficiency is due primarily to language; or has already been in the same grade for 2 years.

The act repeals the read-to-achieve fund and replaces it with the early literacy fund (ELF). The ELF consists of any moneys remaining in the read-to-achieve fund as of June 30, 2012; 5% of the tobacco settlement moneys up to $8 million per year; and, beginning in the 2013-14 fiscal year, up to $16 million of the interest received on the permanent school fund. In the 2012-13 budget year, the department will expend the ELF moneys on the read-to-achieve grants that are outstanding as of July 1, 2012, and may use any remaining moneys to provide technical support to local education providers. Beginning in the 2013-14 budget year, the department will annually expend the ELF moneys as follows:

The department will administer an early literacy grant program to provide money to applying local education providers to implement literacy support and intervention instruction programs, including professional development, to assist students in early grades to achieve reading competency.

Each local education provider may use its per-pupil intervention moneys to provide a full-day kindergarten program, a summer school literacy program, tutoring services for students with significant reading deficiencies, or other intervention services, as approved by the department, for students with significant reading deficiencies. Each local education provider must ensure that each early grade student with a significant reading deficiency has access to at least one of the interventions provided using per-pupil intervention moneys.

Each local education provider will annually report to the department data that enables the department to determine whether students who receive READ plans achieve reading competency, how long it takes for them to do so, and whether prohibiting a student from advancing to the next grade level has a positive effect on the student's reading skill level. The local education providers will also report the uses of the early literacy grant moneys and per-pupil intervention moneys and the results achieved. The department will report its analysis of the data and the information concerning the use of moneys to the state board, the governor, and the general assembly and will make it available on the department's web site.

Accreditation of school districts and public schools is based partially on student achievement on the statewide assessments. The department, working with the technical advisory panel in the department, will determine the calculation of additional credit for schools, school districts, and the state charter school institute for students who are identified as having significant reading deficiencies while enrolled in the early grades and who score partially proficient, proficient, or advanced on the statewide reading assessment in third or fourth grade. Each public school, each school district, and the institute will include in its performance, improvement, priority improvement, or turnaround plan provisions to address the needs of students enrolled in the early grades who are identified as having significant reading deficiencies.

Prior to the act, a student enrolled in kindergarten was always counted as a half-time student for purposes of school finance. Under the act, a student who is enrolled in kindergarten and who is retained for a second year of kindergarten due to a significant reading deficiency will be counted as a full-time student for purposes of school finance.

For the 2012-13 fiscal year, the act appropriates $5,411,989 and 9.8 FTE from the ELF to the department for implementation of the act. The act also appropriates a total of $120,418 from the state education fund to the department for allocation to school districts for the costs of providing education services to students who are held in adult jails. These moneys were previously appropriated from the read-to-achieve fund, which was repealed in the act. The act adjusts the 2012-13 long bill accordingly.

APPROVED by Governor May 17, 2012
EFFECTIVE July 1, 2012

 

H.B. 12-1240 K-12 education - statutory amendments. The act contains the following statutory changes concerning K-12 education:

APPROVED by Governor June 4, 2012
EFFECTIVE June 4, 2012

 

H.B. 12-1261 National board certification for teachers and principals - low-performing, high-needs schools - stipends - appropriation. The act extends indefinitely the program that, subject to available appropriations, provides stipends to teachers and principals who have received certification from the national board for professional teaching or principal standards and for said teachers and principals who are employed in a low-performing, high-needs schools. Principals are added to the eligible pool of stipend recipients.

The act appropriates $604,800 from the state education fund to the department of education for payment of the stipends in the 2012-13 fiscal year.

APPROVED by Governor June 4, 2012
EFFECTIVE August 8, 2012

NOTE: This act was passed without a safety clause. For further explanation concerning the effective date, see page vi of this digest.

 

H.B. 12-1345 School finance - base per pupil funding - district total program funding amount - negative factor - charter school capital construction - boards of cooperative services - children with disabilities - early literacy assessment tool - charter school at-risk supplemental aid - assessment tests for students in grades 9 through 12 - school discipline - appropriation. Funding for public schools from kindergarten through the twelfth grade, as determined by the "Public School Finance Act of 1994" (Act) is modified for the 2012-13 budget year and, in some circumstances, for budget years thereafter, as follows:

Statewide base per pupil funding. For the 2012-13 budget year, the statewide base per pupil funding is increased to $5,843.26 to account for a 3.7% inflation rate.

Negative factor. For the 2012-13 budget year, the negative factor is applied to the annual appropriation to fund the state's share of total program funding for all school districts and the funding for institute charter schools (total program funding), but without an additional reduction in the amount of the annual appropriation to fund the state's share of total program funding. For the 2012-13 budget year, the total program funding amount is increased by approximately $57 million compared with the amount previously required in law to account for increases in student enrollment.

Charter school capital construction. For the 2012-13 budget year and each budget year thereafter, the annual appropriation from the state education fund for capital construction costs for all eligible districts and for all eligible institute charter schools is increased by $1 million for a total of $6 million.

In addition to the changes to the Act, other provisions related to funding for public schools are modified as follows:

BOCES - supplemental on-line education services contracts. Beginning on August 1, 2012, subject to available appropriations, the mountain board of cooperative services (BOCES) shall contract every 3 years, rather than every year, with an entity that sells supplemental on-line education courses to provide the courses to school districts, charter schools, and BOCES that choose to purchase the courses.

BOCES - assistance for meeting state educational priorities. Beginning in the 2012-13 fiscal year, a BOCES may receive additional moneys to assist its participating school districts in implementing and meeting the state's educational priorities as determined by the commissioner of education every 3 years. To receive additional moneys, a BOCES must submit a plan to the state board of education (state board) that details how the BOCES will use the moneys to assist its participating school districts in implementing and meeting the state's educational priorities. The department of education (department) will distribute the moneys to the BOCES based on specified requirements and may retain a portion of the moneys to hire a rural school district liaison and to support a rural school district council that the commissioner of education created in the department.

Children with disabilities. The definition of "children with disabilities" is clarified to include persons 3 through 8 years old who have been found to be children experiencing developmental delays, as defined in the code of federal regulations.

Early literacy assessment tool. By October 1, 2012, the department shall issue a request for proposals for the purchase of an early literacy assessment tool that teachers may use to obtain real-time assessments of the reading skill levels of students enrolled in kindergarten and first, second, and third grades and, based on the assessment results, generate intervention plans and materials. The request for proposals must include software with specified capabilities, training for software use, and a sufficient number of software licenses for each local education provider in the state to use the early literacy assessment tool in all of its kindergarten and first-, second-, and third-grade classes. The department shall select from among the responses and enter into a contract by March 1, 2013. In negotiating the terms of the contract, the department shall include performance measures, which may include student outcomes, as conditions affecting the amounts payable under the contract. The department must provide certain information to local education providers in connection with the early literacy assessment tool.

Charter school at-risk supplemental aid. For the 2012-13 budget year and each budget year thereafter, certain qualified districts, district charter schools, and institute charter schools will receive at-risk supplemental aid (aid) in addition to the at-risk funding received pursuant to the Act as follows:

If the appropriation to the department of education is insufficient to fund one hundred percent of the aid calculated, the department shall proportionately reduce the aid for each school district, district charter school, and institute charter school.

Assessment tests for students in grades 9 through 12. The general assembly recognizes the federal high school testing requirements; recognizes that most states have adopted the common core state standards in mathematics and English language arts; and states its intent and expectation that ACT, Inc., will reconfigure the ACT to align with the common core state standards and thereby enable the states to administer the ACT as the statewide high school assessment that meets the federal high school testing requirements.

Each public school, including each charter school, must assist each student and his or her parent in creating and maintaining an individual career and academic plan (ICAP) by ninth grade. The school will work with the student to use the ICAP to guide course selections and performance expectations with the goal of ensuring that the student demonstrates postsecondary and workforce readiness upon graduation at a level that enables the student to progress toward his or her postsecondary goals, as identified in the ICAP, without needing remedial educational services.

Starting in the 2012-13 school year, each school district and each charter school that includes grades 9 through 12 may administer to students in those grades the basic skills placement or assessment tests (basic skills tests) that the community colleges use for first-time freshman students. The school district or charter school will receive state funding to reimburse the district or charter school for one administration per student of all of the basic skills test units. If indicated by a student's scores, the school will create an intervention plan for the student to ensure that the student receives the classes and other educational services necessary for the student to demonstrate postsecondary and workforce readiness at graduation at a level that allows the student to advance toward his or her identified postsecondary goals without needing remedial educational services. The school, the student, and the student's parent may agree to concurrently enroll the student in basic skills courses at an institution of higher education if the student is in twelfth grade.

If the school district or charter school that the student attends chooses to administer the basic skills tests, each student's ICAP will include the student's scores on the basic skills tests and the student's intervention plan, if any.

Subject to available appropriations, the department will allocate moneys to school districts and charter schools to reimburse them for the costs of administering the basic skills tests.

When adopting the criteria for endorsed high school diplomas, the state board will establish the criteria for demonstrating postsecondary and workforce readiness at various levels that reflect the postsecondary education options available to students. The beginning date on which schools and school districts will be held accountable for the number of students who receive endorsed high school diplomas is changed because the criteria for issuing endorsed high school diplomas are not yet adopted.

School discipline. The statutory grounds for suspension or expulsion of a student are amended to increase the discretion of school administrators and school district boards of education (local boards). The only circumstances under which expulsion remains mandatory are those that involve a student who is found to have brought a firearm to school or possessed a firearm at school. Each school district is encouraged to consider each of many specific factors before suspending or expelling a student, including the student's age, the student's disciplinary history, whether the student has a disability, the seriousness of the student's violation, whether the student's violation threatened the safety of any student or staff member, and whether a lesser intervention would properly address the student's violation.

Each school district accountability committee shall provide input to the local board concerning the creation and enforcement of its school conduct and discipline code (code). Each school district shall take reasonable measures to ensure that each student enrolled in each public school of the school district is familiar with the code. In creating and enforcing a code, each local board shall:

A child who is denied admission or expelled as an outcome of a hearing has 10 days after the denial of admission or expulsion to appeal the decision of the executive officer to the local board, after which time the local board has the discretion to grant or deny the appeal. If a student is suspended from school, the suspending authority, to the extent possible, shall provide an opportunity for the student to make up school work during the period of suspension for full or partial academic credit.

On or before January 1, 2014, the peace officer standards and training (P.O.S.T.) board shall identify a training curriculum to prepare peace officers to serve as school resource officers (SROs). To the extent practicable, the training curriculum must incorporate the suggestions of relevant stakeholders. The training curriculum must include a means of recognizing and identifying peace officers who successfully complete the training curriculum.

In assigning peace officers to serve as SROs, each law enforcement agency is encouraged to ensure that the peace officers have successfully completed the SRO training curriculum or will complete the training within 6 months after beginning the assignment. On and after January 1, 2015, each county sheriff and each municipal law enforcement agency of the state shall employ at least one peace officer who has successfully completed the training curriculum.

In providing the training curriculum, the P.O.S.T. board may include provisions to authorize awarding credit to a peace officer who has successfully completed an SRO certification curriculum offered by one or more public or private entities that are identified by the P.O.S.T. board. The P.O.S.T. board may charge a fee to each peace officer who enrolls in the training curriculum. The amount of the fee shall not exceed the direct and indirect costs that the P.O.S.T. board incurs in providing the training curriculum.

If an SRO or other law enforcement officer acting in his or her official capacity on school grounds, in a school vehicle, or at a school activity or sanctioned event (on school grounds) arrests a student of the school, the officer shall notify the principal of the school or his or her designee of the arrest within 24 hours after the arrest.

If an SRO or other law enforcement officer acting in his or her official capacity on school grounds issues a summons, ticket, or other notice requiring the appearance of a student of the school in court or at a police station for investigation relating to an offense allegedly committed on school grounds, the officer shall notify the principal of the school or his or her designee of the issuance of the summons, ticket, or other notice within 10 days after such issuance.

An SRO shall be familiar with the provisions of the code of the school to which he or she is assigned. Commencing August 1, 2013, and continuing each August 1 thereafter, each law enforcement agency employing or contracting with any law enforcement officer who is acting or has acted in his or her official capacity on school grounds shall report to the division of criminal justice (division), in aggregate form without personal identifying information, certain data about the cases handled by the agency on school grounds.

On or before August 1, 2013, and on or before each August 1 thereafter, the district attorney of each judicial district, or his or her designee, shall report to the division certain information about offenses alleged to have been committed by a student that have occurred on school grounds within the judicial district during the preceding 12 months.

The division shall receive the information reported to the division by law enforcement agencies and by district attorneys and provide the information, as submitted to the division, to any member of the public upon request in a manner that does not include any identifying information regarding any student. If the division provides the information to a member of the public, the division may charge a fee to the person. The fee shall not exceed the direct and indirect costs incurred by the division in providing the information.

Appropriation - adjustments in 2012 long bill. Appropriations made in the annual general appropriation act to the department for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2012, are adjusted as follows:

In addition, footnote 8 in the 2012 general appropriation act is amended to adjust the amount of the fiscal year 2012-13 appropriation that may be used for the Accelerating Students Through Concurrent Enrollment (ASCENT) program.

Appropriation. For the 2012-13 fiscal year, the act:

APPROVED by Governor May 19, 2012
EFFECTIVE May 19, 2012

 


Session Laws of Colorado Digest of Bills General Assembly State of Colorado


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