Florida Senate - 2014                        COMMITTEE AMENDMENT
       Bill No. CS for SB 1528
                              LEGISLATIVE ACTION                        
                    Senate             .             House              
                   Comm: OO            .                                
                  04/11/2014           .                                

    1         Senate Amendment (with directory and title amendments)
    3         Between lines 76 and 77
    4  insert:
    5         (7) CHARTER.—The major issues involving the operation of a
    6  charter school shall be considered in advance and written into
    7  the charter. The charter shall be signed by the governing board
    8  of the charter school and the sponsor, following a public
    9  hearing to ensure community input.
   10         (a) The charter shall address and criteria for approval of
   11  the charter shall be based on:
   12         1. The school’s mission, the students to be served, and the
   13  ages and grades to be included.
   14         2. The focus of the curriculum, the instructional methods
   15  to be used, any distinctive instructional techniques to be
   16  employed, and identification and acquisition of appropriate
   17  technologies needed to improve educational and administrative
   18  performance which include a means for promoting safe, ethical,
   19  and appropriate uses of technology which comply with legal and
   20  professional standards.
   21         a. The charter shall ensure that reading is a primary focus
   22  of the curriculum and that resources are provided to identify
   23  and provide specialized instruction for students who are reading
   24  below grade level. The curriculum and instructional strategies
   25  for reading must be consistent with the Next Generation Sunshine
   26  State Standards and grounded in scientifically based reading
   27  research.
   28         b. In order to provide students with access to diverse
   29  instructional delivery models, to facilitate the integration of
   30  technology within traditional classroom instruction, and to
   31  provide students with the skills they need to compete in the
   32  21st century economy, the Legislature encourages instructional
   33  methods for blended learning courses consisting of both
   34  traditional classroom and online instructional techniques.
   35  Charter schools may implement blended learning courses which
   36  combine traditional classroom instruction and virtual
   37  instruction. Students in a blended learning course must be full
   38  time students of the charter school and receive the online
   39  instruction in a classroom setting at the charter school.
   40  Instructional personnel certified pursuant to s. 1012.55 who
   41  provide virtual instruction for blended learning courses may be
   42  employees of the charter school or may be under contract to
   43  provide instructional services to charter school students. At a
   44  minimum, such instructional personnel must hold an active state
   45  or school district adjunct certification under s. 1012.57 for
   46  the subject area of the blended learning course. The funding and
   47  performance accountability requirements for blended learning
   48  courses are the same as those for traditional courses.
   49         3. The current incoming baseline standard of student
   50  academic achievement, the outcomes to be achieved, and the
   51  method of measurement that will be used. The criteria listed in
   52  this subparagraph shall include a detailed description of:
   53         a. How the baseline student academic achievement levels and
   54  prior rates of academic progress will be established.
   55         b. How these baseline rates will be compared to rates of
   56  academic progress achieved by these same students while
   57  attending the charter school.
   58         c. To the extent possible, how these rates of progress will
   59  be evaluated and compared with rates of progress of other
   60  closely comparable student populations.
   62  The district school board is required to provide academic
   63  student performance data to charter schools for each of their
   64  students coming from the district school system, as well as
   65  rates of academic progress of comparable student populations in
   66  the district school system.
   67         4. The methods used to identify the educational strengths
   68  and needs of students and how well educational goals and
   69  performance standards are met by students attending the charter
   70  school. The methods shall provide a means for the charter school
   71  to ensure accountability to its constituents by analyzing
   72  student performance data and by evaluating the effectiveness and
   73  efficiency of its major educational programs. Students in
   74  charter schools shall, at a minimum, participate in the
   75  statewide assessment program created under s. 1008.22.
   76         5. In secondary charter schools, a method for determining
   77  that a student has satisfied the requirements for graduation in
   78  s. 1003.428 or s. 1003.4282.
   79         6. A method for resolving conflicts between the governing
   80  board of the charter school and the sponsor.
   81         7. The admissions procedures and dismissal procedures,
   82  including the school’s code of student conduct.
   83         8. The ways by which the school will achieve a
   84  racial/ethnic balance reflective of the community it serves or
   85  within the racial/ethnic range of other public schools in the
   86  same school district.
   87         9. The financial and administrative management of the
   88  school, including a reasonable demonstration of the professional
   89  experience or competence of those individuals or organizations
   90  applying to operate the charter school or those hired or
   91  retained to perform such professional services and the
   92  description of clearly delineated responsibilities and the
   93  policies and practices needed to effectively manage the charter
   94  school. A description of internal audit procedures and
   95  establishment of controls to ensure that financial resources are
   96  properly managed must be included. Both public sector and
   97  private sector professional experience shall be equally valid in
   98  such a consideration.
   99         10. The asset and liability projections required in the
  100  application which are incorporated into the charter and shall be
  101  compared with information provided in the annual report of the
  102  charter school.
  103         11. A description of procedures that identify various risks
  104  and provide for a comprehensive approach to reduce the impact of
  105  losses; plans to ensure the safety and security of students and
  106  staff; plans to identify, minimize, and protect others from
  107  violent or disruptive student behavior; and the manner in which
  108  the school will be insured, including whether or not the school
  109  will be required to have liability insurance, and, if so, the
  110  terms and conditions thereof and the amounts of coverage.
  111         12. The term of the charter which shall provide for
  112  cancellation of the charter if insufficient progress has been
  113  made in attaining the student achievement objectives of the
  114  charter and if it is not likely that such objectives can be
  115  achieved before expiration of the charter. The initial term of a
  116  charter shall be for 4 or 5 years. In order to facilitate access
  117  to long-term financial resources for charter school
  118  construction, charter schools that are operated by a
  119  municipality or other public entity as provided by law are
  120  eligible for up to a 15-year charter, subject to approval by the
  121  district school board. A charter lab school is eligible for a
  122  charter for a term of up to 15 years. In addition, to facilitate
  123  access to long-term financial resources for charter school
  124  construction, charter schools that are operated by a private,
  125  not-for-profit, s. 501(c)(3) status corporation are eligible for
  126  up to a 15-year charter, subject to approval by the district
  127  school board. Such long-term charters remain subject to annual
  128  review and may be terminated during the term of the charter, but
  129  only according to the provisions set forth in subsection (8).
  130         13. The facilities to be used and their location. The
  131  sponsor may not require a charter school must submit to the
  132  sponsor to have a certificate of occupancy or a temporary
  133  certificate of occupancy no later for such a facility earlier
  134  than 15 calendar days before the first day of school. If such
  135  documentation is not received 15 calendar days before the first
  136  day of school, the charter contract automatically reverts to a
  137  planning year for the first year of the charter’s 5-year
  138  contract.
  139         14. The qualifications to be required of the teachers and
  140  the potential strategies used to recruit, hire, train, and
  141  retain qualified staff to achieve best value.
  142         15. The governance structure of the school, including the
  143  status of the charter school as a public or private employer as
  144  required in paragraph (12)(i).
  145         16. A timetable for implementing the charter which
  146  addresses the implementation of each element thereof and the
  147  date by which the charter shall be awarded in order to meet this
  148  timetable.
  149         17. In the case of an existing public school that is being
  150  converted to charter status, alternative arrangements for
  151  current students who choose not to attend the charter school and
  152  for current teachers who choose not to teach in the charter
  153  school after conversion in accordance with the existing
  154  collective bargaining agreement or district school board rule in
  155  the absence of a collective bargaining agreement. However,
  156  alternative arrangements shall not be required for current
  157  teachers who choose not to teach in a charter lab school, except
  158  as authorized by the employment policies of the state university
  159  which grants the charter to the lab school.
  160         18. Full disclosure of the identity of all relatives
  161  employed by the charter school who are related to the charter
  162  school owner, president, chairperson of the governing board of
  163  directors, superintendent, governing board member, principal,
  164  assistant principal, or any other person employed by the charter
  165  school who has equivalent decisionmaking authority. For the
  166  purpose of this subparagraph, the term “relative” means father,
  167  mother, son, daughter, brother, sister, uncle, aunt, first
  168  cousin, nephew, niece, husband, wife, father-in-law, mother-in
  169  law, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law,
  170  stepfather, stepmother, stepson, stepdaughter, stepbrother,
  171  stepsister, half brother, or half sister.
  172         19. Implementation of the activities authorized under s.
  173  1002.331 by the charter school when it satisfies the eligibility
  174  requirements for a high-performing charter school. A high
  175  performing charter school shall notify its sponsor in writing by
  176  March 1 if it intends to increase enrollment or expand grade
  177  levels the following school year. The written notice shall
  178  specify the amount of the enrollment increase and the grade
  179  levels that will be added, as applicable.
  181  ====== D I R E C T O R Y  C L A U S E  A M E N D M E N T ======
  182  And the directory clause is amended as follows:
  183         Delete line 17
  184  and insert:
  185         Section 1. Paragraph (h) of subsection (6), paragraph (a)
  186  of subsection (7), and paragraph
  188  ================= T I T L E  A M E N D M E N T ================
  189  And the title is amended as follows:
  190         Delete line 5
  191  and insert: