Florida Senate - 2014                        COMMITTEE AMENDMENT
       Bill No. CS for SB 1512
                              LEGISLATIVE ACTION                        
                    Senate             .             House              
                  Comm: RCS            .                                
                  04/04/2014           .                                

    1         Senate Amendment (with title amendment)
    3         Delete everything after the enacting clause
    4  and insert:
    5         Section 1. Section 1002.385, Florida Statutes, is created
    6  to read:
    7         1002.385 Florida Personal Learning Scholarship Accounts.—
    8         (1) ESTABLISHMENT OF PROGRAM.—The Florida Personal Learning
    9  Scholarship Accounts is established to provide the option for a
   10  parent to better meet the individual educational needs of his or
   11  her eligible child.
   12         (2) DEFINITIONS.—As used in this section, the term:
   13         (a) “Agency” means the Agency for Persons with
   14  Disabilities.
   15         (b) “Approved provider” means a provider approved by the
   16  Agency for Persons with Disabilities, a health care practitioner
   17  as defined in s. 456.001(4), or a provider approved by the
   18  Department of Education pursuant to s. 1002.66.
   19         (c) “Curriculum” means a complete course of study for a
   20  particular content area or grade level, including any required
   21  supplemental materials.
   22         (d) “Disability” means, for a student in kindergarten to
   23  grade 12, autism, as defined in s. 393.063(3); cerebral palsy,
   24  as defined in s. 393.063(4); Down syndrome, as defined in s.
   25  393.063(13); an intellectual disability, as defined in s.
   26  393.063(21); Prader-Willi syndrome, as defined in s.
   27  393.063(25); Spina bifida, as defined in s. 393.063(36); for a
   28  student in kindergarten, being a high-risk child, as defined in
   29  s. 393.063(20)(a); or Williams syndrome.
   30         (e) “Eligible postsecondary educational institution” means
   31  a Florida College System institution, a state university, a
   32  school district technical center, a school district adult
   33  general education center, or an accredited nonpublic
   34  postsecondary educational institution, as defined in s. 1005.02,
   35  which is licensed to operate in the state pursuant to
   36  requirements specified in part III of chapter 1005.
   37         (f) “Eligible private school” means a private school, as
   38  defined in s. 1002.01, which is located in this state, which
   39  offers an education to students in any grade from kindergarten
   40  to grade 12, and which meets the requirements of:
   41         1. Sections 1002.42 and 1002.421; and
   42         2. A scholarship program under s. 1002.39 or s. 1002.395,
   43  as applicable, if the private school participates in a
   44  scholarship program under s. 1002.39 or s. 1002.395.
   45         (g) “ILSP” means an individual learning services plan that
   46  is developed for a student who participates in the program.
   47         (h) “Parent” means a resident of this state who is a
   48  parent, as defined in s. 1000.21.
   49         (i) “Program” means the Florida Personal Learning
   50  Scholarship Accounts established in this section.
   51         (3) PROGRAM ELIGIBILITY.—A parent of a student with a
   52  disability may request and receive from the state a Florida
   53  personal learning scholarship account for the purposes specified
   54  in subsection (5) if:
   55         (a) The student:
   56         1. Is a resident of this state;
   57         2. Is eligible to enroll in kindergarten through grade 12
   58  in a public school in this state;
   59         3. Has a disability as defined in paragraph (2)(d) and
   60  meets the agency’s eligibility criteria;
   61         4. Has an ILSP developed by the agency in consultation with
   62  the parent and written in accordance with rules of the Agency
   63  for Persons with Disabilities; and
   64         5.Complies with regular school attendance pursuant to s.
   65  1003.01(13); and
   66         (b) The parent has applied to the agency to participate in
   67  the program by February 1 prior to the school year in which the
   68  student will participate or an alternate date adopted by the
   69  agency in rule for any vacant, funded slots. The request must be
   70  communicated directly to the agency in a manner that creates a
   71  written or electronic record of the request and the date of
   72  receipt of the request. The agency must notify the school
   73  district and the Department of Education of the parent’s intent
   74  upon receipt of the parent’s request.
   75         (4) PROGRAM PROHIBITIONS.— A student is not eligible for
   76  the program if:
   77         (a) The student or student’s parent has accepted any
   78  payment, refund, or rebate, in any manner, from a provider of
   79  any services received pursuant to subsection (5);
   80         (b) The student’s participation in the program has been
   81  denied or revoked by the executive director of the Agency for
   82  Persons with Disabilities pursuant to subsection (10); or
   83         (c) The student’s parent has forfeited participation in the
   84  program for failure to comply with requirements pursuant to
   85  subsection (11).
   86         (5) AUTHORIZED USES OF PROGRAM FUNDS.—Program funds may be
   87  spent for the following purposes, according to the goals and
   88  objectives identified in the student’s ILSP:
   89         (a) Instructional materials, including digital devices,
   90  digital periphery devices, and assistive technology devices that
   91  allow a student to access instruction or instructional content.
   92         (b) Curriculum as defined in paragraph (2)(c).
   93         (c) Specialized services by approved providers that are
   94  selected by the parent and specified in the student’s ILSP.
   95  These specialized services may include, but are not limited to:
   96         1. Applied behavior analysis services as provided in ss.
   97  627.6686 and 641.31098.
   98         2. Services provided by speech-language pathologists as
   99  defined in s. 468.1125.
  100         3. Occupational therapy services as defined in s. 468.203.
  101         4. Services provided by physical therapists as defined in
  102  s. 486.021.
  103         5. Services provided by listening and spoken language
  104  specialists and an appropriate acoustical environment for a
  105  child who is deaf or hard of hearing and who has received an
  106  implant or assistive hearing device.
  107         (d) Enrollment in, or tuition or fees associated with
  108  enrollment in, an eligible private school, an eligible
  109  postsecondary educational institution, a private tutoring
  110  program authorized under s. 1002.43, a virtual program offered
  111  by a department-approved private online provider that meets the
  112  provider qualifications specified in s. 1002.45(2)(a), or an
  113  approved online course offered pursuant to s. 1003.499 or s.
  114  1004.0961.
  115         (e) Fees for nationally standardized, norm-referenced
  116  achievement tests, Advanced Placement examinations, industry
  117  certification examinations, assessments related to postsecondary
  118  education, or other assessments specified in the student’s ILSP.
  119         (f) Contributions to a Coverdell education savings
  120  established pursuant to 26 U.S.C. s. 530 of the Internal Revenue
  121  Code for the benefit of the eligible student.
  122         (g) Contributions to the Stanley G. Tate Florida Prepaid
  123  College Program pursuant to s. 1009.98, for the benefit of the
  124  eligible student.
  125         (h) Contracted services provided by a public school or
  126  school district, including classes for the services specified in
  127  the ILSP or additional services. A student who receives services
  128  under a contract under this paragraph shall not be considered to
  129  be enrolled in a public school for eligibility purposes as
  130  specified in subsection (3).
  132  A specialized service provider, eligible private school,
  133  eligible postsecondary educational institution, private tutoring
  134  program provider, online or virtual program provider, public
  135  school, school district, or other entity receiving payments
  136  pursuant to this subsection may not share, refund, or rebate any
  137  moneys from a Florida personal learning scholarship account with
  138  the parent or participating student in any manner.
  139         (6) TERM OF THE PROGRAM.—For purposes of continuity of
  140  educational choice, the program payments made under this section
  141  shall remain in force until a student participating in the
  142  program participates in any of the prohibited activities
  143  specified in subsection (4), has funds revoked by the agency
  144  pursuant to subsection (10), graduates from high school, or
  145  reaches 22 years of age, whichever occurs first.
  147         (a) For each student participating in the program who takes
  148  statewide, standardized assessments under s. 1008.22, the school
  149  district in which the student resides must notify the student
  150  and his or her parent about the locations and times to take all
  151  statewide, standardized assessments.
  152         (b) The school district retains all current duties,
  153  authority, and responsibilities as specified in the Florida K-20
  154  Education Code.
  155         (8) DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION OBLIGATIONS.—The department
  156  shall:
  157         (a) Maintain a list of eligible private schools as defined
  158  in paragraph (2)(f) and private tutoring programs pursuant to s.
  159  1002.43.
  160         (b) Compare the list of students participating in the
  161  program with the public school enrollment lists before each
  162  program payment to avoid duplicate payments.
  164  The department retains all current duties, authority, and
  165  responsibilities as specified in the Florida K-20 Education
  166  Code.
  168  The Commissioner of Education retains all current duties,
  169  authority, and responsibilities as specified in the Florida K-20
  170  Education Code.
  173         (a) The executive director:
  174         1. Shall deny, suspend, or revoke a student’s participation
  175  in the program if the health, safety, or welfare of the student
  176  is threatened or fraud is suspected.
  177         2. Shall deny, suspend, or revoke an authorized use of
  178  program funds if the health, safety, or welfare of the student
  179  is threatened or fraud is suspected.
  180         3. May deny, suspend, or revoke an authorized use of
  181  program funds for material failure to comply with this section
  182  and applicable agency rules if the noncompliance is correctable
  183  within a reasonable period of time. Otherwise, the executive
  184  director shall deny, suspend, or revoke an authorized use for
  185  failure to materially comply with the law and rules adopted
  186  under this section.
  187         4. Shall require compliance by the appropriate party by a
  188  date certain for all nonmaterial failures to comply with this
  189  section and applicable agency rules. The executive director may
  190  deny, suspend, or revoke program participation under this
  191  section thereafter.
  192         (b) In determining whether to deny, suspend, or revoke in
  193  accordance with this subsection, the executive director may
  194  consider factors that include, but are not limited to, acts or
  195  omissions by a participating entity which led to a previous
  196  denial or revocation of participation in an education
  197  scholarship program under this chapter; failure to reimburse the
  198  agency for program funds improperly received or retained by the
  199  entity; imposition of a prior criminal sanction related to the
  200  entity or its officers or employees; imposition of a civil fine
  201  or administrative fine, license revocation or suspension, or
  202  program eligibility suspension, termination, or revocation
  203  related to an entity’s management or operation; or other types
  204  of criminal proceedings in which the entity or its officers or
  205  employees were found guilty of, regardless of adjudication, or
  206  entered a plea of nolo contendere or guilty to, any offense
  207  involving fraud, deceit, dishonesty, or moral turpitude.
  209  PARTICIPATION.—A parent who applies for program participation
  210  under this section is exercising his or her parental option to
  211  determine the appropriate placement or services that best meet
  212  the needs of his or her student. To enroll an eligible student
  213  in the program, the parent must sign an agreement with the
  214  agency and annually submit a notarized, sworn compliance
  215  statement to the agency to:
  216         (a) Affirm that the student is enrolled in a school or
  217  program that meets minimum student attendance requirements as
  218  provided in s. 1003.21.
  219         (b) Comply with the ILSP and use the program funds only for
  220  authorized purposes to meet the student’s goals and objectives
  221  in the ILSP as described in subsection (2).
  222         (c) Provide for an appropriate assessment that documents
  223  the student’s demonstration of educational progress at a level
  224  commensurate with her or his ability. The parent shall select
  225  one of the following:
  226         1. A norm-referenced assessment offered by the private
  227  school, administered by a teacher who holds a valid Florida
  228  professional certificate, if the parent selects the private
  229  school option;
  230         2. A statewide, standardized assessment pursuant to s.
  231  1008.22, including the Florida Alternate Assessment, at the
  232  location and time specified by the district in which the student
  233  resides; or
  234         3. Any other valid assessment as mutually agreed upon by
  235  the parent and the district school superintendent of the
  236  district in which the student resides.
  238  A student who attends a public school must take the statewide,
  239  standardized assessments pursuant to s. 1008.22.
  240         (d) Affirm that the student takes all appropriate
  241  assessments as specified in the student’s ILSP. The parent is
  242  responsible for transporting the student to the assessment site
  243  designated by the school district if the parent selects a
  244  statewide, standardized assessment pursuant to s. 1008.22.
  245         (e)Notify the school district that the student is
  246  participating in the program if the parent chooses to enroll the
  247  student in an eligible private school pursuant to paragraph
  248  (2)(g), a home education program pursuant to s. 1002.41, a
  249  scholarship program pursuant to this chapter, or a private
  250  tutoring program authorized under s. 1002.43.
  251         (f) Request participation in the program at least 60 days
  252  before the date of the first program payment.
  253         (g) Affirm that the student remains in good standing with
  254  the provider or school if those options are selected by the
  255  parent.
  256         (h) Apply for admission of his or her child if the private
  257  school option is selected by the parent.
  258         (i) Annually renew participation in the program.
  259         (j) Be responsible for the payment of all eligible expenses
  260  in the excess of the amount of the personal learning scholarship
  261  account in accordance with the terms agreed upon between the
  262  parent and the provider.
  263         (k) Affirm that the parent will not transfer any college
  264  savings funds to another beneficiary.
  265         (l) Affirm that the parent will not take possession of any
  266  funding contributed by the state.
  267         (m) Maintain a portfolio of records and materials which
  268  must be preserved by the parent for 2 years and be made
  269  available for inspection by the district school superintendent
  270  or the superintendent’s designee upon 15 days’ written notice.
  271  This paragraph does not require the superintendent to inspect
  272  the portfolio. The portfolio of records and materials consists
  273  of:
  274         1. A log of educational instruction and services which is
  275  made contemporaneously with delivery of the instruction and
  276  services and which designates by title any reading materials
  277  used; and
  278         2. Samples of any writings, worksheets, workbooks, or
  279  creative materials used or developed by the student.
  281  A parent who fails to comply with this subsection forfeits the
  282  personal learning scholarship account.
  284  eligible private school as defined in paragraph (2)(f) must:
  285         (a) Comply with all requirements for private schools in ss.
  286  1002.42 and 1002.421. A private school participating in a
  287  scholarship program under s. 1002.39 or s. 1002.395 must also
  288  comply with the requirements of that scholarship program.
  289         (b) Provide to the agency, upon request, all documentation
  290  required for the student’s participation, including the private
  291  school’s and student’s fee schedules.
  292         (c) Be academically accountable to the parent for meeting
  293  the educational needs of the student.
  294         (d) Employ or contract with teachers who have regular and
  295  direct contact with each student receiving a scholarship under
  296  this section at the school’s physical location.
  298  The inability of a private school to meet the requirements of
  299  this subsection shall constitute a basis for the ineligibility
  300  of the private school to participate in the scholarship program
  301  as determined by the Department of Education.
  303         (a) The agency shall:
  304         1. Monitor and provide oversight for the program.
  305         2. Receive applications and determine student eligibility
  306  in accordance with the requirements of this section. The agency
  307  must notify the Department of Education of the applicants for
  308  the program by February 1 prior to the school year in which the
  309  student intends to participate and indicate how the student will
  310  comply with regular school attendance pursuant to ss.
  311  1003.01(13) and 1003.23.
  312         3.Notify parents of their receipt of a scholarship on a
  313  first-come, first-served basis based upon the funds provided for
  314  this program in the General Appropriations Act.
  315         4.Establish a date by which a parent must confirm initial
  316  or continuing participation in the program and confirm the
  317  establishment or continuance of a personal learning scholarship
  318  account.
  319         5.Establish a date and process by which students on the
  320  wait list or late-filing applicants may be allowed to
  321  participate in the program during the school year, within the
  322  amount of funds provided for this program in the General
  323  Appropriations Act.
  324         6.Develop an ILSP, in consultation with the parent, which
  325  documents the following:
  326         a.That the student has an eligible disability.
  327         b.Learning goals and objectives for the student which are
  328  linked directly to how program funds will be spent for
  329  authorized services.
  330         c.How attendance requirements in s. 1003.21 will be met.
  331         d.How progress towards meeting the individual learning
  332  goals and objectives will be assessed and documented for
  333  purposes of continued participation in the program.
  334         7.Assign a level of services category for each student
  335  that documents the nature and intensity of services that the
  336  student will need to meet the learning outcomes specified in his
  337  or her ILSP. The level of services determines the amount of the
  338  award for the student.
  339         8.Receive an administrative fee of up to 10 percent from
  340  the appropriation to operate the Personal Learning Scholarship
  341  Accounts.
  342         9.Establish and maintain a separate account for each
  343  eligible student.
  344         10. Establish and maintain a list of approved providers
  345  pursuant to paragraph (2)(b).
  346         11.Verify eligible expenditures prior to the distribution
  347  of funds for any expenditures made pursuant to paragraphs (5)(a)
  348  and (b). The review of expenditures for services in paragraphs
  349  (5)(c) through (h) may be completed after the payment has been
  350  made.
  351         12. Develop a system for payment of benefits by electronic
  352  funds transfer, including, but not limited to, debit cards,
  353  electronic payment cards, or any other means of electronic
  354  payment that the agency deems to be commercially viable or cost
  355  effective. Commodities or services related to the development of
  356  such a system shall be procured by competitive solicitation
  357  unless they are purchased from a state term contract pursuant to
  358  s. 287.056.
  359         (b) The agency may contract for services.
  360         (14) FUNDING AND PAYMENT.—
  361         (a)Funding for the Personal Learning Scholarship Accounts
  362  shall be provided in the General Appropriations Act which shall
  363  specify the annual per service level for public school students,
  364  private school students, home education students, students
  365  receiving a scholarship pursuant to s. 1002.39 or s. 1002.395,
  366  and students participating in a private tutoring program.
  367         (b) Upon an eligible student’s graduation from an eligible
  368  postsecondary educational institution or after any period of 4
  369  consecutive years after high school graduation in which the
  370  student is not enrolled in an eligible postsecondary educational
  371  institution, the student’s personal learning scholarship account
  372  shall be closed, and any remaining funds shall revert to the
  373  state.
  374         (c) Monies received pursuant to this section do not
  375  constitute taxable income to the parent of an eligible student.
  376         (15) OBLIGATIONS OF THE AUDITOR GENERAL.—The Auditor
  377  General shall conduct an annual financial and operational audit
  378  of accounts and records of the Personal Learning Scholarship
  379  Accounts. As a part of this audit, the Auditor General shall
  380  verify, at a minimum, the total amount of students served and
  381  eligibility of reimbursement made by the agency and transmit
  382  that information to the agency.
  383         (16) LIABILITY.—The state is not liable for the award or
  384  any use of awarded funds under this section.
  385         (17) SCOPE OF AUTHORITY.—This section does not expand the
  386  regulatory authority of this state, its officers, or any school
  387  district to impose additional regulation on participating
  388  private schools, nonpublic postsecondary educational
  389  institutions, and private providers beyond those reasonably
  390  necessary to enforce requirements expressly set forth in this
  391  section.
  392         (18) RULES.—The Agency for Persons with Disabilities shall
  393  adopt rules pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 to administer
  394  this section.
  396  YEAR.—
  397         (a)The Agency for Persons with Disabilities shall, in
  398  consultation with an advisory work group, develop an ILSP,
  399  levels of services requirements, a system for payment of claims
  400  and providers, and a system to document and assess progress
  401  toward meeting the individual learning goals and objectives in
  402  the ILSP. The advisory work group shall make specific
  403  recommendations by October 1, 2014, to the agency. The agency
  404  shall adopt rules to implement the recommendations of the
  405  advisory group by December 31, 2014. The Commissioner of
  406  Education, the executive director of the agency, the Chancellor
  407  of the State University System, and the director of the Division
  408  of Vocational Rehabilitation shall appoint staff to work on the
  409  advisory group with representatives from the Center for Autism
  410  and Related Disabilities (CARD) and the Florida Diagnostic and
  411  Learning Resources System (FDLRS).
  412         (b)Notwithstanding the provisions of this section related
  413  to notification and eligibility timelines, the agency may enroll
  414  parents in a statewide pilot program on a rolling schedule on a
  415  first-come, first-served basis, no later than January 31, 2015,
  416  within the amount of funds provided in the General
  417  Appropriations Act.
  418         (c) There is hereby appropriated for the 2014-2015 fiscal
  419  year to the Agency for Persons with Disabilities a sum of
  420  $18,400,000 from the Operations and Maintenance Trust Fund for
  421  the Personal Learning Scholarship Accounts. From these funds,
  422  $1,500,000 shall be allocated for the advisory work group as
  423  startup costs to the agency for planning and implementation of
  424  the pilot program. For the pilot program, the agency shall
  425  provide awards for eligible students which range from $5,000 to
  426  $19,000 per recipient and shall be based on service levels
  427  established by the agency. Public school students and students
  428  who receive a scholarship pursuant to ss. 1002.39 and 1002.395
  429  shall receive 50 percent of the designated amount for the
  430  student’s service level.
  431         Section 2. Present subsection (10) of section 1003.4282,
  432  Florida Statutes, is renumbered as subsection (11), and a new
  433  subsection (10) is added to that section, to read:
  434         1003.4282 Requirements for a standard high school diploma.—
  435         (10) STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES.—Beginning with students
  436  entering grade 9 in the 2014-2015 school year, this subsection
  437  applies to a student with a disability for whom the IEP team has
  438  determined that the Florida Alternate Assessment is the most
  439  appropriate measure of the student’s skills.
  440         (a) A parent of the student with a disability shall, in
  441  collaboration with the individual education plan team pursuant
  442  to s. 1003.5716, declare an intent for the student to graduate
  443  from high school with either a standard high school diploma or a
  444  certificate of completion. A student with a disability who does
  445  not satisfy the standard high school diploma requirements
  446  pursuant to this section shall be awarded a certificate of
  447  completion.
  448         (b) The following options, in addition to the other options
  449  specified in this section, may be used to satisfy the standard
  450  high school diploma requirements, as specified in the student’s
  451  individual education plan:
  452         1. A combination of course substitutions, assessments,
  453  industry certifications, and other acceleration options
  454  appropriate to the student’s unique skills and abilities that
  455  meet the criteria established by State Board of Education rule.
  456         2. A portfolio of quantifiable evidence that documents a
  457  student’s mastery of academic standards through rigorous metrics
  458  established by State Board of Education rule. A portfolio may
  459  include, but is not limited to, documentation of work
  460  experience, internships, community service, and postsecondary
  461  credit.
  462         (c) A student with a disability who meets the standard high
  463  school diploma requirements in this section may defer the
  464  receipt of a standard high school diploma if the student:
  465         1. Has an individual education plan that prescribes special
  466  education, transition planning, transition services, or related
  467  services through age 21; and
  468         2. Is enrolled in accelerated college credit instruction
  469  pursuant to s. 1007.27, industry certification courses that lead
  470  to college credit, a collegiate high school program, courses
  471  necessary to satisfy the Scholar designation requirements, or a
  472  structured work-study, internship, or pre-apprenticeship
  473  program.
  474         (d) A student with a disability who receives a certificate
  475  of completion and has an individual education plan that
  476  prescribes special education, transition planning, transition
  477  services, or related services through 21 years of age may
  478  continue to receive the specified instruction and services.
  479         (e) Any waiver of the statewide, standardized assessment
  480  requirements by the individual education plan team, pursuant to
  481  s. 1008.22(3)(c), must be approved by the parent and is subject
  482  to verification for appropriateness by an independent reviewer
  483  selected by the parent as provided for in s. 1003.572.
  484         Section 3. Effective July 1, 2015, section 1003.438,
  485  Florida Statutes, is repealed.
  486         Section 4. Section 1003.5716, Florida Statutes, is created
  487  to read:
  488         1003.5716 Transition to postsecondary education and career
  489  opportunities.—All students with disabilities who are 3 years of
  490  age to 21 years of age have the right to a free, appropriate
  491  public education. As used in this section, the term “IEP” means
  492  individual education plan.
  493         (1) To ensure quality planning for a successful transition
  494  of a student with a disability to postsecondary education and
  495  career opportunities, an IEP team shall begin the process of,
  496  and develop an IEP for, identifying the need for transition
  497  services before the student with a disability attains the age of
  498  14 years in order for his or her postsecondary goals and career
  499  goals to be identified and in place when he or she attains the
  500  age of 16 years. This process must include, but is not limited
  501  to:
  502         (a) Consideration of the student’s need for instruction in
  503  the area of self-determination and self-advocacy to assist the
  504  student’s active and effective participation in an IEP meeting;
  505  and
  506         (b) Preparation for the student to graduate from high
  507  school with a standard high school diploma pursuant to s.
  508  1003.4282 with a Scholar designation unless the parent chooses a
  509  Merit designation.
  510         (2) Beginning not later than the first IEP to be in effect
  511  when the student turns 16, or younger, if determined appropriate
  512  by the parent and the IEP team, the IEP must include the
  513  following statements that must be updated annually:
  514         (a) A statement of intent to pursue a standard high school
  515  diploma and a Scholar or Merit designation, pursuant to s.
  516  1003.4285, as determined by the parent.
  517         (b) A statement of intent to receive a standard high school
  518  diploma before the student reaches the age of 22 and a
  519  description of how the student will fully meet the requirements
  520  in s. 1003.428 or s. 1003.4282, as applicable, including, but
  521  not limited to, a portfolio pursuant to s. 1003.4282(10)(b) that
  522  meets the criteria specified in State Board of Education rule.
  523  The IEP must also specify the outcomes and additional benefits
  524  expected by the parent and the IEP team at the time of the
  525  student’s graduation.
  526         (c) A statement of appropriate measurable long-term
  527  postsecondary education and career goals based upon age
  528  appropriate transition assessments related to training,
  529  education, employment, and, if appropriate, independent living
  530  skills and the transition services, including courses of study
  531  needed to assist the student in reaching those goals.
  532         (3) Any change in the IEP for the goals specified in
  533  subsection (2) must be approved by the parent and is subject to
  534  verification for appropriateness by an independent reviewer
  535  selected by the parent as provided in s. 1003.572.
  536         (4) If a participating agency responsible for transition
  537  services, other than the school district, fails to provide the
  538  transition services described in the IEP, the school district
  539  shall reconvene the IEP team to identify alternative strategies
  540  to meet the transition objectives for the student that are
  541  specified in the IEP. However, this does not relieve any
  542  participating agency of the responsibility to provide or pay for
  543  any transition service that the agency would otherwise provide
  544  to students with disabilities who meet the eligibility criteria
  545  of that agency.
  546         Section 5. Subsection (3) of section 1003.572, Florida
  547  Statutes, is amended to read:
  548         1003.572 Collaboration of public and private instructional
  549  personnel.—
  550         (3) Private instructional personnel who are hired or
  551  contracted by parents to collaborate with public instructional
  552  personnel must be permitted to observe the student in the
  553  educational setting, collaborate with instructional personnel in
  554  the educational setting, and provide services in the educational
  555  setting according to the following requirements:
  556         (a) The student’s public instructional personnel and
  557  principal consent to the time and place.
  558         (b) The private instructional personnel satisfy the
  559  requirements of s. 1012.32 or s. 1012.321.
  561  For the purpose of implementing this subsection, a school
  562  district may not impose any requirements beyond those
  563  requirements specified in this subsection or charge any fees.
  564         Section 6. Section 1008.2121, Florida Statutes, is created
  565  to read:
  566         1008.2121 Students with severe cognitive or physical
  567  disabilities; permanent exemption.—Based on information that a
  568  reasonably prudent person would rely upon, including, but not
  569  limited to, facts contained within an individual education plan
  570  under s. 1008.212, documentation from an appropriate health care
  571  provider, or certification from the district school board
  572  superintendent, the Commissioner of Education shall
  573  perfunctorily grant a permanent exemption to a student who
  574  suffers from such a severe cognitive disability or physical
  575  disability that the student permanently lacks the capacity to
  576  take statewide, standardized assessments. The State Board of
  577  Education shall adopt rules to administer this section,
  578  including, but not limited to, expediting the exemption process
  579  to demonstrate the utmost compassion and consideration for
  580  meeting the parent’s and student’s needs.
  581         Section 7. Paragraph (c) of subsection (5) and paragraph
  582  (b) of subsection (6) of section 1008.25, Florida Statutes, are
  583  amended to read:
  584         1008.25 Public school student progression; remedial
  585  instruction; reporting requirements.—
  587         (c) The parent of any student who exhibits a substantial
  588  deficiency in reading, as described in paragraph (a), must be
  589  notified in writing of the following:
  590         1. That his or her child has been identified as having a
  591  substantial deficiency in reading.
  592         2. A description of the current services that are provided
  593  to the child.
  594         3. A description of the proposed supplemental instructional
  595  services and supports that will be provided to the child that
  596  are designed to remediate the identified area of reading
  597  deficiency.
  598         4. That if the child’s reading deficiency is not remediated
  599  by the end of grade 3, the child must be retained unless he or
  600  she is exempt from mandatory retention for good cause.
  601         5. Strategies for parents to use in helping their child
  602  succeed in reading proficiency.
  603         6. That the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) is
  604  not the sole determiner of promotion and that additional
  605  evaluations, portfolio reviews, and assessments are available to
  606  the child to assist parents and the school district in knowing
  607  when a child is reading at or above grade level and ready for
  608  grade promotion.
  609         7. The district’s specific criteria and policies for a
  610  portfolio as provided in subparagraph (6)(b)4. and the evidence
  611  required for a student to demonstrate mastery of Florida’s
  612  academic standards for English Language Arts. A parent of a
  613  student in grade 3 who is identified anytime during the year as
  614  being at risk of retention may request that the school
  615  immediately begin collecting evidence for a portfolio.
  616         8.7. The district’s specific criteria and policies for
  617  midyear promotion. Midyear promotion means promotion of a
  618  retained student at any time during the year of retention once
  619  the student has demonstrated ability to read at grade level.
  621         (b) The district school board may only exempt students from
  622  mandatory retention, as provided in paragraph (5)(b), for good
  623  cause. A student who is promoted to grade 4 with a good cause
  624  exemption shall be provided intensive reading instruction and
  625  intervention that include specialized diagnostic information and
  626  specific reading strategies to meet the needs of each student so
  627  promoted. The school district shall assist schools and teachers
  628  with the implementation of reading strategies for students
  629  promoted with a good cause exemption which research has shown to
  630  be successful in improving reading among students that have
  631  reading difficulties. Good cause exemptions shall be limited to
  632  the following:
  633         1. Limited English proficient students who have had less
  634  than 2 years of instruction in an English for Speakers of Other
  635  Languages program.
  636         2. Students with disabilities whose individual education
  637  plan indicates that participation in the statewide assessment
  638  program is not appropriate, consistent with the requirements of
  639  State Board of Education rule.
  640         3. Students who demonstrate an acceptable level of
  641  performance on an alternative standardized reading or English
  642  Language Arts assessment approved by the State Board of
  643  Education.
  644         4. A student who demonstrates through a student portfolio
  645  that he or she is performing at least at Level 2 on FCAT Reading
  646  or the common core English Language Arts assessment, as
  647  applicable under s. 1008.22.
  648         5. Students with disabilities who participate in FCAT
  649  Reading or the common core English Language Arts assessment, as
  650  applicable under s. 1008.22, and who have an individual
  651  education plan or a Section 504 plan that reflects that the
  652  student has received intensive remediation in reading and
  653  English Language Arts for more than 2 years but still
  654  demonstrates a deficiency and was previously retained in
  655  kindergarten, grade 1, grade 2, or grade 3.
  656         6. Students who have received intensive reading
  657  intervention for 2 or more years but still demonstrate a
  658  deficiency in reading and who were previously retained in
  659  kindergarten, grade 1, grade 2, or grade 3 for a total of 2
  660  years. A student may not be retained more than once in grade 3.
  661         7.6. Students who have received intensive remediation in
  662  reading and English Language Arts, as applicable under s.
  663  1008.22, for 2 or more years but still demonstrate a deficiency
  664  and who were previously retained in kindergarten, grade 1, grade
  665  2, or grade 3 for a total of 2 years. Intensive instruction for
  666  students so promoted must include an altered instructional day
  667  that includes specialized diagnostic information and specific
  668  reading strategies for each student. The district school board
  669  shall assist schools and teachers to implement reading
  670  strategies that research has shown to be successful in improving
  671  reading among low-performing readers.
  672         Section 8. Effective July 1, 2015, paragraph (c) of
  673  subsection (1) of section 120.81, Florida Statutes, is amended
  674  to read:
  675         120.81 Exceptions and special requirements; general areas.—
  676         (1) EDUCATIONAL UNITS.—
  677         (c) Notwithstanding s. 120.52(16), any tests, test scoring
  678  criteria, or testing procedures relating to student assessment
  679  which are developed or administered by the Department of
  680  Education pursuant to s. 1003.428, s. 1003.429, s. 1003.438, s.
  681  1008.22, or s. 1008.25, or any other statewide educational tests
  682  required by law, are not rules.
  683         Section 9. Effective July 1, 2015, subsection (2) of
  684  section 409.1451, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
  685         409.1451 The Road-to-Independence Program.—
  687         (a) A young adult is eligible for services and support
  688  under this subsection if he or she:
  689         1. Was living in licensed care on his or her 18th birthday
  690  or is currently living in licensed care; or was at least 16
  691  years of age and was adopted from foster care or placed with a
  692  court-approved dependency guardian after spending at least 6
  693  months in licensed care within the 12 months immediately
  694  preceding such placement or adoption;
  695         2. Spent at least 6 months in licensed care before reaching
  696  his or her 18th birthday;
  697         3. Earned a standard high school diploma or its equivalent
  698  pursuant to s. 1003.428, s. 1003.4281, s. 1003.429, or s.
  699  1003.435, or s. 1003.438;
  700         4. Has been admitted for enrollment as a full-time student
  701  or its equivalent in an eligible postsecondary educational
  702  institution as provided in s. 1009.533. For purposes of this
  703  section, the term “full-time” means 9 credit hours or the
  704  vocational school equivalent. A student may enroll part-time if
  705  he or she has a recognized disability or is faced with another
  706  challenge or circumstance that would prevent full-time
  707  attendance. A student needing to enroll part-time for any reason
  708  other than having a recognized disability must get approval from
  709  his or her academic advisor;
  710         5. Has reached 18 years of age but is not yet 23 years of
  711  age;
  712         6. Has applied, with assistance from the young adult’s
  713  caregiver and the community-based lead agency, for any other
  714  grants and scholarships for which he or she may qualify;
  715         7. Submitted a Free Application for Federal Student Aid
  716  which is complete and error free; and
  717         8. Signed an agreement to allow the department and the
  718  community-based care lead agency access to school records.
  719         Section 10. Effective July 1, 2015, subsection (4) of
  720  section 1007.263, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
  721         1007.263 Florida College System institutions; admissions of
  722  students.—Each Florida College System institution board of
  723  trustees is authorized to adopt rules governing admissions of
  724  students subject to this section and rules of the State Board of
  725  Education. These rules shall include the following:
  726         (4) A student who has been awarded a special diploma as
  727  defined in s. 1003.438 or a certificate of completion as defined
  728  in s. 1003.428(7)(b) is eligible to enroll in certificate career
  729  education programs.
  731  Each board of trustees shall establish policies that notify
  732  students about developmental education options for improving
  733  their communication or computation skills that are essential to
  734  performing college-level work, including tutoring, extended time
  735  in gateway courses, free online courses, adult basic education,
  736  adult secondary education, or private provider instruction.
  737         Section 11. Except as otherwise expressly provided in this
  738  act, this act shall take effect upon becoming a law.
  740  ================= T I T L E  A M E N D M E N T ================
  741  And the title is amended as follows:
  742         Delete everything before the enacting clause
  743  and insert:
  744                        A bill to be entitled                      
  745         An act relating to education; creating s. 1002.385,
  746         F.S.; establishing the Florida Personal Learning
  747         Scholarship Accounts; defining terms; specifying
  748         criteria for students who are eligible to participate
  749         in the program; identifying certain students who are
  750         not eligible to participate in the program;
  751         authorizing the use of awarded funds for specific
  752         purposes; prohibiting specific providers, schools,
  753         institutions, school districts, and other entities
  754         from sharing, refunding, or rebating program funds;
  755         specifying the terms of the program; requiring the
  756         school district in which a student resides to provide
  757         locations and times to take all statewide assessments;
  758         providing that the school district retains all duties,
  759         authority, and responsibilities specified in the
  760         Florida K-20 Education Code; specifying the duties of
  761         the Department of Education relating to the program;
  762         providing that the Commissioner of Education retains
  763         all current duties, authority, and responsibilities as
  764         specified in the Florida K-20 Education Code;
  765         requiring the executive director of the Agency for
  766         Persons with Disabilities to deny, suspend, or revoke
  767         participation in the program or use of program funds
  768         under certain circumstances; providing additional
  769         factors under which the executive director may deny,
  770         suspend, or revoke a participation in the program or
  771         program funds; requiring a parent to sign an agreement
  772         with the Agency for Persons with Disabilities to
  773         enroll his or her child in the program which specifies
  774         the responsibilities of a parent or student for using
  775         funds in a personal learning scholarship account and
  776         for submitting a compliance statement to the agency;
  777         providing that a parent who fails to comply with the
  778         responsibilities of the agreement forfeits the
  779         personal learning scholarship account; providing
  780         eligibility requirements and obligations for private
  781         schools under the program; specifying agency
  782         obligations under the program; authorizing the agency
  783         to contract for services; providing for funding and
  784         payment; providing the Auditor General’s obligations
  785         under the program; requiring the agency to adopt
  786         rules; providing for implementation of the program in
  787         a specified school year; providing an appropriation;
  788         amending s. 1003.4282, F.S.; providing standard high
  789         school diploma requirements for certain students with
  790         disabilities; authorizing certain students with
  791         disabilities to continue to receive certain
  792         instructions and services; requiring an independent
  793         review and a parent’s approval to waive statewide,
  794         standardized assessment requirements by the IEP team;
  795         repealing s. 1003.438, F.S., relating to special high
  796         school graduation requirements for certain exceptional
  797         students; creating s. 1003.5716, F.S.; providing that
  798         certain students with disabilities have a right to
  799         free, appropriate public education; requiring an
  800         individual education plan (IEP) team to begin the
  801         process of, and to develop an IEP for, identifying
  802         transition services needs for a student with a
  803         disability before the student attains a specified age;
  804         providing requirements for the process; requiring
  805         certain statements to be included and annually updated
  806         in the IEP; providing that changes in the goals
  807         specified in an IEP are subject to independent review
  808         and parental approval; requiring the school district
  809         to reconvene the IEP team to identify alternative
  810         strategies to meet transition objectives if a
  811         participating agency fails to provide transition
  812         services specified in the IEP; providing that the
  813         agency’s failure does not relieve the agency of the
  814         responsibility to provide or pay for the transition
  815         services that the agency otherwise would have
  816         provided; amending s. 1003.572, F.S.; prohibiting a
  817         school district from imposing additional requirements
  818         on private instructional personnel or charging fees;
  819         creating s. 1008.2121, F.S.; requiring the
  820         Commissioner of Education to permanently exempt
  821         certain students with disabilities from taking
  822         statewide, standardized assessments; requiring the
  823         State Board of Education to adopt rules; amending s.
  824         1008.25, F.S.; requiring written notification relating
  825         to portfolios to a parent of a student with a
  826         substantial reading deficiency; requiring a student
  827         promoted to a certain grade with a good cause
  828         exemption to receive intensive reading instruction and
  829         intervention; requiring a school district to assist
  830         schools and teachers with the implementation of
  831         reading strategies; revising good cause exemptions;
  832         amending ss. 120.81, 409.1451, and 1007.263, F.S.;
  833         conforming cross-references; providing effective
  834         dates.