Florida Senate - 2014                                    SB 1376
       By Senator Thompson
       12-01399-14                                           20141376__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to a community schools initiative;
    3         requiring the Department of Education to implement the
    4         Reigniting Education Achievement with Coordinated Help
    5         (REACH) Program as a public-private partnership in
    6         low-performing public schools; authorizing funding;
    7         specifying services to be offered with the goal of
    8         improving student academic achievement; providing
    9         requirements for implementation of the program;
   10         requiring the department to submit a report to the
   11         Legislature at the conclusion of the program;
   12         requiring the State Board of Education to adopt rules
   13         for program implementation; providing an effective
   14         date.
   16  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   18         Section 1. Community schools initiative; Reigniting
   19  Education Achievement with Coordinated Help (REACH) Program.—
   20         (1) Beginning in the 2014-2015 school year, the Department
   21  of Education shall establish a 4-year community schools
   22  initiative by implementing the Reigniting Education Achievement
   23  with Coordinated Help (REACH) Program in three to five of the
   24  state’s lowest-performing traditional public schools with a
   25  large population of low-income, at-risk students. Program
   26  funding may not exceed $900,000 for the initial year of the
   27  program and each subsequent year unless increased by an act of
   28  the Legislature. The Commissioner of Education shall establish
   29  criteria for participation in the program, including school,
   30  health, and community services to be offered. A school
   31  interested in participating in the program shall submit a letter
   32  of interest to the Commissioner of Education by July 15, 2014.
   33         (2) The program shall consist of a public-private
   34  partnership to supply wrap-around services to students attending
   35  the schools, including, but not limited to, tutorial and after
   36  school programs, student counseling, nutrition education, health
   37  and dental services, parental counseling, and adult education.
   38         (3) The program shall focus attention on improving academic
   39  achievement through a holistic approach through which students
   40  receive the academic, medical, nutritional, and social supports
   41  that they need to develop strong literacy and mathematical
   42  skills, as well as the qualities of responsibility, self
   43  control, attention, and cooperation. The program shall make
   44  available support services that encourage healthy family
   45  dynamics and home-school connections by providing parents with
   46  skills and opportunities to get involved in their children’s
   47  education and help their children succeed in school. The program
   48  shall be based on the following research-driven elements that
   49  lead to student success: improving student achievement and
   50  learning, leveraging community assets and improving school and
   51  community collaboration, improving staff capacity and
   52  effectiveness, and developing family and community partnerships.
   53         (4) The program shall be implemented as follows:
   54         (a) During the first year of operation, a school shall
   55  build partnerships, which include the school district, the local
   56  teachers’ union, parents, social service agencies, medical and
   57  dental professionals, community and civic groups, and
   58  businesses. The school shall also plan services, advertise the
   59  program, establish baseline data, begin offering the services,
   60  and report costs and benefits.
   61         (b) During the second, third, and fourth years of
   62  operation, a school shall continue the partnerships; seek input
   63  and refine services; continue offering the services; monitor the
   64  academic, health, and nutritional progress of students and
   65  families; and report progress, costs, and benefits.
   66         (5) At the conclusion of the program, the Department of
   67  Education shall submit to the President of the Senate and the
   68  Speaker of the House of Representatives a review of the program,
   69  including successful practices and the impact on student
   70  performance and success, and make a recommendation for
   71  continuing or terminating the program.
   72         (6) The State Board of Education shall adopt rules to
   73  administer this section.
   74         Section 2. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law.