Florida Senate - 2015                              CS for SB 152
       By the Committee on Education Pre-K - 12; and Senator Ring
       581-01703-15                                           2015152c1
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to disability awareness; amending s.
    3         1003.4205, F.S.; requiring, rather than authorizing,
    4         each district school board to provide disability
    5         history and awareness instruction in all K-12 public
    6         schools beginning in a specified school year;
    7         requiring presentations by certain individuals to be
    8         included in the disability history and awareness
    9         instruction; requiring each public school to establish
   10         a disability history and awareness advisory council;
   11         providing membership on the council; providing
   12         responsibilities of the council; providing meeting
   13         times for the council; providing an effective date.
   15  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   17         Section 1. Section 1003.4205, Florida Statutes, is amended
   18  to read:
   19         1003.4205 Disability history and awareness instruction.—
   20         (1) Beginning with the 2016-2017 school year, each district
   21  school board shall may provide disability history and awareness
   22  instruction in all K-12 public schools in the district during
   23  the first 2 weeks in October each year. The district school
   24  board shall designate these 2 weeks as “Disability History and
   25  Awareness Weeks.”
   26         (2)(a) During this 2-week period, students shall may be
   27  provided intensive instruction to expand their knowledge,
   28  understanding, and awareness of individuals who had or have with
   29  disabilities;, the history of disability;, and the disability
   30  rights movement. Disability history must may include the events
   31  and timelines of the development and evolution of services to,
   32  and the civil rights of, individuals who had or have with
   33  disabilities. Disability history must may also include the
   34  contributions of specific individuals who had or have with
   35  disabilities, including the contributions of acknowledged
   36  national leaders.
   37         (b) Beginning with the 2016-2017 school year, the
   38  instruction shall may be integrated into the existing school
   39  curriculum in ways including, but not limited to, supplementing
   40  lesson plans, holding school assemblies, or providing other
   41  school-related activities. The instruction shall may be
   42  augmented by presentations from individuals who have
   43  disabilities, who have been approved by the school or school
   44  district as presenters, and who the school or school district
   45  has ensured meet the appropriate background screening
   46  requirements of s. 1012.465 to enter schools and interact with
   47  students delivered by qualified school personnel or by
   48  knowledgeable guest speakers, with a particular focus on
   49  including individuals with disabilities.
   50         (c)1. Each public school in the state shall establish a
   51  disability history and awareness advisory council. The council
   52  at each public school shall consist of the following seven
   53  members:
   54         a. Six teachers who are employed at the school.
   55         b. One individual from the local community who has a
   56  disability.
   57         2. The responsibilities of the council at each public
   58  school shall be, but are not limited to:
   59         a. Providing to the school input regarding the curriculum
   60  for disability history and awareness;
   61         b. Assisting in locating individuals who have disabilities
   62  to make presentations at the school; and
   63         c. Submitting an annual report to the superintendent of the
   64  school district in which the school is located by August 1,
   65  2016, and each year thereafter. The annual report must include,
   66  but need not be limited to, recommendations and policy
   67  alternatives regarding the state of disability awareness at the
   68  school.
   69         3. The council at each public school shall meet at least
   70  four times a year and more often as needed.
   71         (3) The goals of disability history and awareness
   72  instruction include:
   73         (a) Better treatment for individuals who have with
   74  disabilities, especially for youth in school, and increased
   75  attention to preventing the bullying or harassment of students
   76  who have with disabilities.
   77         (b) Encouragement to individuals who have with disabilities
   78  to develop increased self-esteem, resulting in more individuals
   79  who have with disabilities gaining pride in being an individual
   80  with a disability, obtaining postsecondary education, entering
   81  the workforce, and contributing to their communities.
   82         (c) Reaffirmation of the local, state, and federal
   83  commitment to the full inclusion in society of, and the equal
   84  opportunity for, all individuals who have with disabilities.
   85         Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2015.