Florida Senate - 2013                              CS for SB 904
       By the Committee on Education; and Senator Brandes
       581-02011-13                                           2013904c1
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to education; creating s. 1007.012,
    3         F.S.; creating the Florida Accredited Courses and
    4         Tests Initiative (FACTs); providing the purpose of the
    5         initiative; providing legislative intent; providing
    6         that implementing the initiative allows students to
    7         satisfy certain requirements; defining the term
    8         “Florida-accredited course” as it relates to the
    9         initiative; providing for application of certain
   10         courses and assessments toward promotion, graduation,
   11         and degree attainment; requiring that Florida
   12         accredited courses and their assessments be annually
   13         identified, approved, published, and shared for
   14         consideration by certain students and entities;
   15         requiring the Commissioner of Education and the
   16         Chancellor of the State University System to approve
   17         each Florida-accredited course and its assessments;
   18         requiring the Articulation Coordinating Committee to
   19         annually publish and share a list of approved Florida
   20         accredited courses, their assessments, and other
   21         courses; amending s. 1008.24, F.S.; authorizing a
   22         school district, a Florida College System institution,
   23         and a state university to contract with qualified
   24         contractors to administer and proctor statewide
   25         standardized assessments or assessments associated
   26         with Florida-accredited courses; authorizing the
   27         Department of Education to contract for these services
   28         on behalf of the state or a school district, Florida
   29         College System institution, or state university;
   30         providing that assessments may be administered or
   31         proctored by qualified contractors at sites that meet
   32         certain criteria; providing an effective date.
   34  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   36         Section 1. Section 1007.012, Florida Statutes, is created
   37  to read:
   38         1007.012Florida Accredited Courses and Tests Initiative
   39  (FACTs).—
   40         (1)The Florida Accredited Courses and Tests Initiative
   41  (FACTs) is created to expand student choices in selecting
   42  multiple, high-quality public and nonpublic courses and
   43  assessments toward satisfying course, assessment, or credit
   44  requirements for promotion, graduation, or degree attainment.
   45  The purpose of the initiative is to make available multiple
   46  options to suit unique student interests, satisfy educational
   47  requirements, and accelerate student accomplishment of goals in
   48  a productive and effective manner.
   49         (2) The Legislature intends that state and local rules,
   50  policies, and administrative decisions are flexible in
   51  interpreting and implementing the requirements in this section
   52  in order to encourage creative, innovative, resourceful, and
   53  forward-thinking practices that can be modeled throughout this
   54  state and the country. The Legislature intends that the Florida
   55  Accredited Courses and Tests Initiative generate sufficient
   56  options for students to combine multiple instructional
   57  experiences and build complete programs for attaining a standard
   58  high school diploma and a postsecondary education degree which
   59  are tailored to the unique interests of each student.
   60         (3)The initiative allows students in this state to satisfy
   61  public K-12 education promotion or high school graduation
   62  course, assessment, or credit requirements, or to satisfy
   63  requirements for public postsecondary credit or degree
   64  attainment by successfully meeting the assessment requirements
   65  of this subsection.
   66         (a)As used in this section, the term “Florida-accredited
   67  course” is a K-12 course or postsecondary education credit
   68  course that:
   69         1. Is created or provided by individuals, institutions,
   70  entities, or organizations; and
   71         2. Has fulfilled requirements under subsection (4) for
   72  purposes of satisfying requirements for promotion, graduation,
   73  or obtaining a degree. A massive, open online course and a
   74  course associated with rigorous industry certifications are
   75  eligible for consideration and approval as a Florida-accredited
   76  course.
   77         (b)Courses and assessments may be applied toward
   78  requirements for promotion, graduation, or degree attainment in
   79  whole, in subparts, or in a combination of whole and subparts.
   80         1.A Florida-accredited course, a public K-12 course
   81  identified on the course code directory, or a postsecondary
   82  education course identified on the statewide course numbering
   83  system, may be applied as one whole unit or as two or more
   84  discrete subunits such that when combined, they are equivalent
   85  to the whole unit. A student may not be required to repeat
   86  subunits that are satisfactorily completed.
   87         2.Assessments associated with a course must be established
   88  by regionally accredited public institutions and must be
   89  approved in accordance with subsection (4). The assessments may
   90  be applied as one whole assessment or as two or more discrete
   91  subassessments such that when combined, they are equivalent to
   92  the whole assessment. A student may not be required to repeat
   93  subassessments that are satisfactorily completed. Assessments
   94  and subassessments shall be administered pursuant to s. 1008.24.
   95         (4) A Florida-accredited course and its associated
   96  assessments must be annually identified, approved, published,
   97  and shared for consideration by interested students,
   98  institutions, school districts, colleges, and universities.
   99         (a) Each Florida-accredited course and its associated
  100  assessments must be:
  101         1.Approved by the Commissioner of Education for
  102  application in K-12 public schools and Florida College System
  103  institutions in accordance with rules of the State Board of
  104  Education.
  105         2.Approved by the Chancellor of the State University
  106  System for application in state universities in accordance with
  107  rules of the Board of Governors.
  108         (b)The Articulation Coordinating Committee established in
  109  s. 1007.01 shall annually publish and share a consolidated list
  110  of approved Florida-accredited courses and associated, approved
  111  assessments in conjunction with the courses listed in the course
  112  code directory and statewide course numbering system in a manner
  113  that facilitates student and institutional knowledge of the
  114  Florida-accredited courses as options available for credit.
  115         Section 2. Section 1008.24, Florida Statutes, is amended to
  116  read:
  117         1008.24 Test administration and security.—
  118         (1) A person may not It is unlawful for anyone knowingly
  119  and willfully to violate test security rules adopted by the
  120  State Board of Education for mandatory tests administered by or
  121  through the State Board of Education or the Commissioner of
  122  Education to students, educators, or applicants for
  123  certification or administered by school districts pursuant to s.
  124  1008.22, or, with respect to any such test, knowingly and
  125  willfully to:
  126         (a) Give examinees access to test questions prior to
  127  testing;
  128         (b) Copy, reproduce, or use in any manner inconsistent with
  129  test security rules all or any portion of any secure test
  130  booklet;
  131         (c) Coach examinees during testing or alter or interfere
  132  with examinees’ responses in any way;
  133         (d) Make answer keys available to examinees;
  134         (e) Fail to follow security rules for distribution and
  135  return of secure test as directed, or fail to account for all
  136  secure test materials before, during, and after testing;
  137         (f) Fail to follow test administration directions specified
  138  in the test administration manuals; or
  139         (g) Participate in, direct, aid, counsel, assist in, or
  140  encourage any of the acts prohibited in this section.
  141         (2) A Any person who violates this section commits a
  142  misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s.
  143  775.082 or s. 775.083.
  144         (3) A school district, a Florida College System
  145  institution, and a state university may contract with qualified
  146  contractors to administer and proctor statewide, standardized
  147  assessments required under s. 1008.22 or assessments associated
  148  with Florida-accredited courses under s. 1007.012, as approved
  149  by the Department of Education in accordance with rules of the
  150  State Board of Education. The Department of Education may also
  151  contract for these services on behalf of the state or any school
  152  district, Florida College System institution, or state
  153  university. Assessments may be administered or proctored by
  154  qualified contractors at sites that meet criteria established by
  155  rules of the State Board of Education and adopted pursuant to
  156  ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 to implement the contracting
  157  requirements of this subsection.
  158         (4)(3)(a) A district school superintendent, a president of
  159  a public postsecondary educational institution, or a president
  160  of a nonpublic postsecondary educational institution shall
  161  cooperate with the Commissioner of Education in any
  162  investigation concerning the administration of a test
  163  administered pursuant to state statute or rule.
  164         (b) The identity of a school or postsecondary educational
  165  institution, the personally identifiable information of any
  166  personnel of any school district or postsecondary educational
  167  institution, or any specific allegations of misconduct obtained
  168  or reported pursuant to an investigation conducted by the
  169  Department of Education of a testing impropriety are
  170  confidential and exempt from the provisions of s. 119.07(1) and
  171  s. 24(a), Art. I of the State Constitution until the conclusion
  172  of the investigation or until such time as the investigation
  173  ceases to be active. For the purpose of this paragraph, an
  174  investigation shall be deemed concluded upon a finding that no
  175  impropriety has occurred, upon the conclusion of any resulting
  176  preliminary investigation pursuant to s. 1012.796, upon the
  177  completion of any resulting investigation by a law enforcement
  178  agency, or upon the referral of the matter to an employer who
  179  has the authority to take disciplinary action against an
  180  individual who is suspected of a testing impropriety. For the
  181  purpose of this paragraph, an investigation shall be considered
  182  active so long as it is ongoing and there is a reasonable, good
  183  faith anticipation that an administrative finding will be made
  184  in the foreseeable future. This paragraph is subject to the Open
  185  Government Sunset Review Act in accordance with s. 119.15 and
  186  shall stand repealed on October 2, 2014, unless reviewed and
  187  saved from repeal through reenactment by the Legislature.
  188         Section 3. This act shall take effect July 1, 2013.