Florida Senate - 2016                       CS for CS for SB 894
       By the Committees on Appropriations; and Education Pre-K - 12;
       and Senator Detert
       576-03781-16                                           2016894c2
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to education personnel; amending s.
    3         39.201, F.S.; authorizing certain information to be
    4         used for educator certification discipline and review;
    5         amending s. 39.202, F.S.; authorizing certain
    6         employees or agents of the Department of Education to
    7         have access to certain reports and records; amending
    8         s. 1012.05, F.S.; authorizing, rather than requiring,
    9         the department to sponsor a job fair meeting certain
   10         criteria; requiring the department to coordinate a
   11         best practice community; amending s. 1012.2315, F.S.;
   12         eliminating certain State Board of Education
   13         rulemaking authority related to teacher assignment;
   14         amending s. 1012.39, F.S.; providing requirements
   15         regarding liability insurance for students performing
   16         clinical field experience; creating s. 1012.562, F.S.;
   17         requiring the department to approve school leader
   18         preparation programs; providing for approval;
   19         providing program requirements; providing for
   20         rulemaking; amending s. 1012.79, F.S.; revising
   21         membership of the Education Practices Commission;
   22         authorizing the Commissioner of Education to appoint
   23         emeritus members to the commission; amending s.
   24         1012.796, F.S.; authorizing the commissioner to issue
   25         a letter of guidance in response to a complaint
   26         against a certified teacher or administrator;
   27         providing an effective date.
   29  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   31         Section 1. Subsection (6) of section 39.201, Florida
   32  Statutes, is amended to read:
   33         39.201 Mandatory reports of child abuse, abandonment, or
   34  neglect; mandatory reports of death; central abuse hotline.—
   35         (6) Information in the central abuse hotline may not be
   36  used for employment screening, except as provided in s.
   37  39.202(2)(a) and (h). Information in the central abuse hotline
   38  and the department’s automated abuse information system may be
   39  used by the department, its authorized agents or contract
   40  providers, the Department of Health, or county agencies as part
   41  of the licensure or registration process pursuant to ss.
   42  402.301-402.319 and ss. 409.175-409.176. Pursuant to s.
   43  39.202(2)(q), the information in the central abuse hotline may
   44  also be used by the Department of Education for purposes of
   45  educator certification discipline and review.
   46         Section 2. Paragraphs (q), (r), and (s) of subsection (2)
   47  of section 39.202, Florida Statutes, are redesignated as
   48  paragraphs (r), (s), and (t), respectively, and a new paragraph
   49  (q) is added to that subsection, to read:
   50         39.202 Confidentiality of reports and records in cases of
   51  child abuse or neglect.—
   52         (2) Except as provided in subsection (4), access to such
   53  records, excluding the name of the reporter which shall be
   54  released only as provided in subsection (5), shall be granted
   55  only to the following persons, officials, and agencies:
   56         (q) An employee or agent of the Department of Education who
   57  is responsible for the investigation or prosecution of
   58  misconduct by a certified educator.
   59         Section 3. Subsection (4) of section 1012.05, Florida
   60  Statutes, is amended to read:
   61         1012.05 Teacher recruitment and retention.—
   62         (4) The Department of Education, in cooperation with
   63  district personnel offices, may shall sponsor a job fair in a
   64  central part of the state to match in-state educators and
   65  potential educators and out-of-state educators and potential
   66  educators with teaching opportunities in this state. The
   67  Department of Education is authorized to collect a job fair
   68  registration fee not to exceed $20 per person and a booth fee
   69  not to exceed $250 per school district or other interested
   70  participating organization. The revenue from the fees shall be
   71  used to promote and operate the job fair. Funds may be used to
   72  purchase promotional items such as mementos, awards, and
   73  plaques. The Department of Education shall also coordinate a
   74  best practice community to ensure that school district personnel
   75  responsible for teacher recruitment and other human resources
   76  functions are operating with the most up-to-date knowledge.
   77         Section 4. Paragraph (b) of subsection (2) of section
   78  1012.2315, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
   79         1012.2315 Assignment of teachers.—
   80         (2) ASSIGNMENT TO SCHOOLS GRADED “D” or “F”.—
   81         (b)1. Beginning July 1, 2014, a school district may assign
   82  an individual newly hired as instructional personnel to a school
   83  that has earned a grade of “F” in the previous year or any
   84  combination of three consecutive grades of “D” or “F” in the
   85  previous 3 years pursuant to s. 1008.34 if the individual:
   86         a. Has received an effective rating or highly effective
   87  rating in the immediate prior year’s performance evaluation
   88  pursuant s. 1012.34;
   89         b. Has successfully completed or is enrolled in a teacher
   90  preparation program pursuant to s. 1004.04, s. 1004.85, or s.
   91  1012.56, or a teacher preparation program specified in State
   92  Board of Education rule, is provided with high quality mentoring
   93  during the first 2 years of employment, holds a certificate
   94  issued pursuant to s. 1012.56, and holds a probationary contract
   95  pursuant to s. 1012.335(2)(a); or
   96         c. Holds a probationary contract pursuant to s.
   97  1012.335(2)(a), holds a certificate issued pursuant to s.
   98  1012.56, and has successful teaching experience, and if, in the
   99  judgment of the school principal, students would benefit from
  100  the placement of that individual.
  101         2. As used in this paragraph, the term “mentoring” includes
  102  the use of student achievement data combined with at least
  103  monthly observations to improve the educator’s effectiveness in
  104  improving student outcomes. Mentoring may be provided by a
  105  school district, a teacher preparation program approved pursuant
  106  to s. 1004.04, s. 1004.85, or s. 1012.56, or a teacher
  107  preparation program specified in State Board of Education rule.
  108         3. The State Board of Education shall adopt rules under ss.
  109  120.536(1) and 120.54 to implement this paragraph.
  111  Each school district shall annually certify to the Commissioner
  112  of Education that the requirements in this subsection have been
  113  met. If the commissioner determines that a school district is
  114  not in compliance with this subsection, the State Board of
  115  Education shall be notified and shall take action pursuant to s.
  116  1008.32 in the next regularly scheduled meeting to require
  117  compliance.
  118         Section 5. Subsection (3) of section 1012.39, Florida
  119  Statutes, is amended to read:
  120         1012.39 Employment of substitute teachers, teachers of
  121  adult education, nondegreed teachers of career education, and
  122  career specialists; students performing clinical field
  123  experience.—
  124         (3) A student who is enrolled in a state-approved teacher
  125  preparation program in a postsecondary educational institution
  126  that is approved by rules of the State Board of Education and
  127  who is jointly assigned by the postsecondary educational
  128  institution and a district school board to perform a clinical
  129  field experience under the direction of a regularly employed and
  130  certified educator shall, while serving such supervised clinical
  131  field experience, be accorded the same protection of law as that
  132  accorded to the certified educator except for the right to
  133  bargain collectively as an employee of the district school
  134  board. The district school board providing the clinical field
  135  experience shall notify the student electronically or in writing
  136  of the availability of educator liability insurance under s.
  137  1012.75. A postsecondary educational institution or district
  138  school board may not require a student enrolled in a state
  139  approved teacher preparation program to purchase liability
  140  insurance as a condition of participation in any clinical field
  141  experience or related activity on the premises of an elementary
  142  or secondary school.
  143         Section 6. Section 1012.562, Florida Statutes, is created
  144  to read:
  145         1012.562 Public accountability and state approval of school
  146  leader preparation programs.—The Department of Education shall
  147  establish a process for the approval of Level I and Level II
  148  school leader preparation programs that will enable aspiring
  149  school leaders to obtain their certificate in educational
  150  leadership under s. 1012.56. School leader preparation programs
  151  must be competency-based, aligned to the principal leadership
  152  standards adopted by the state board, and open to individuals
  153  employed by public schools, including charter schools and
  154  virtual schools. Level I programs may be offered by school
  155  districts or postsecondary institutions and lead to initial
  156  certification in educational leadership for the purpose of
  157  preparing individuals to serve as school administrators. Level
  158  II programs may be offered by school districts, build upon Level
  159  I training, and lead to renewal certification as a school
  160  principal.
  161         (1) PURPOSE.—The purpose of school leader preparation
  162  programs is to:
  163         (a) Increase the supply of effective school leaders in the
  164  public schools of this state.
  165         (b) Produce school leaders who are prepared to lead the
  166  state’s diverse student population in meeting high standards for
  167  academic achievement.
  168         (c) Enable school leaders to facilitate the development and
  169  retention of effective and highly effective classroom teachers.
  170         (d) Produce leaders with the competencies and skills
  171  necessary to achieve the state’s education goals.
  172         (e) Sustain the state system of school improvement and
  173  education accountability.
  174         (2) LEVEL I PROGRAMS.—
  175         (a) Initial approval of a Level I program shall be for a
  176  period of 5 years. A postsecondary institution or school
  177  district may submit to the department in a format prescribed by
  178  the department an application to establish a Level I school
  179  leader preparation program. To be approved, a Level I program
  180  must:
  181         1. Provide competency-based training aligned to the
  182  principal leadership standards adopted by the State Board of
  183  Education.
  184         2. If the program is provided by a postsecondary
  185  institution, partner with at least one school district.
  186         3. Describe the qualifications that will be used to
  187  determine program admission standards, including a candidate’s
  188  instructional expertise and leadership potential.
  189         4. Describe how the training provided through the program
  190  will be aligned to the personnel evaluation criteria under s.
  191  1012.34.
  192         (b) Renewal of a Level I program’s approval shall be for a
  193  period of 5 years and shall be based upon evidence of the
  194  program’s continued ability to meet the requirements of
  195  paragraph (a). A postsecondary institution or school district
  196  must submit an institutional program evaluation plan in a format
  197  prescribed by the department for a Level I program to be
  198  considered for renewal. The plan must include:
  199         1. The percentage of personnel who complete the program and
  200  are placed in school leadership positions in public schools
  201  within the state.
  202         2. Results from the personnel evaluations required under s.
  203  1012.34 for personnel who complete the program.
  204         3. The passage rate of personnel who complete the program
  205  on the Florida Education Leadership Examination.
  206         4. The impact personnel who complete the program have on
  207  student learning as measured by the formulas developed by the
  208  commissioner pursuant to s. 1012.34(7).
  209         5. Strategies for continuous improvement of the program.
  210         6. Strategies for involving personnel who complete the
  211  program, other school personnel, community agencies, business
  212  representatives, and other stakeholders in the program
  213  evaluation process.
  214         7. Additional data included at the discretion of the
  215  postsecondary institution or school district.
  216         (c) A Level I program must guarantee the high quality of
  217  personnel who complete the program for the first 2 years after
  218  program completion or the person’s initial certification as a
  219  school leader, whichever occurs first. If a person who completed
  220  the program is evaluated at less than highly effective or
  221  effective under s. 1012.34 and the person’s employer requests
  222  additional training, the Level I program must provide additional
  223  training at no cost to the person or his or her employer. The
  224  training must include the creation of an individualized plan
  225  agreed to by the employer that includes specific learning
  226  outcomes. The Level I program is not responsible for the
  227  person’s employment contract with his or her employer.
  228         (3) LEVEL II PROGRAMS.—Initial approval and subsequent
  229  renewal of a Level II program shall be for a period of 5 years.
  230  A school district may submit to the department in a format
  231  prescribed by the department an application to establish a Level
  232  II school leader preparation program or for program renewal. To
  233  be approved or renewed, a Level II program must:
  234         (a) Demonstrate that personnel accepted into the Level II
  235  program have:
  236         1. Obtained their certificate in educational leadership
  237  under s. 1012.56.
  238         2. Earned a highly effective or effective designation under
  239  s. 1012.34.
  240         3. Satisfactorily performed instructional leadership
  241  responsibilities as measured by the evaluation system in s.
  242  1012.34.
  243         (b) Demonstrate that the Level II program:
  244         1. Provides competency-based training aligned to the
  245  principal leadership standards adopted by the State Board of
  246  Education.
  247         2. Provides training aligned to the personnel evaluation
  248  criteria under s. 1012.34 and professional development program
  249  in s. 1012.986.
  250         3. Provides individualized instruction using a customized
  251  learning plan for each person enrolled in the program that is
  252  based on data from self-assessment, selection, and appraisal
  253  instruments.
  254         4. Conducts program evaluations and implements program
  255  improvements using input from personnel who completed the
  256  program and employers and data gathered pursuant to paragraph
  257  (2)(b).
  258         (c) Gather and monitor the data specified in paragraph
  259  (2)(b).
  260         (4) RULES.—The State Board of Education shall adopt rules
  261  to administer this section.
  262         Section 7. Subsection (1) of section 1012.79, Florida
  263  Statutes, is amended to read:
  264         1012.79 Education Practices Commission; organization.—
  265         (1) The Education Practices Commission is composed consists
  266  of the following 25 members: 10, including 8 teachers; 5
  267  administrators, at least one of whom represents shall represent
  268  a private or virtual school; 4 7 lay citizens who are, 5 of whom
  269  shall be parents of public school students and who are unrelated
  270  to public school employees; and 2 of whom shall be former
  271  charter school governing board or district school board members
  272  or former superintendents, assistant superintendents, or deputy
  273  superintendents; and 4 5 sworn law enforcement officials,
  274  appointed by the State Board of Education from nominations by
  275  the Commissioner of Education and subject to Senate
  276  confirmation. Before Prior to making nominations, the
  277  commissioner shall consult with teaching associations, parent
  278  organizations, law enforcement agencies, and other involved
  279  associations in the state. In making nominations, the
  280  commissioner shall attempt to achieve equal geographical
  281  representation, as closely as possible.
  282         (a) A teacher member, in order to be qualified for
  283  appointment:
  284         1. Must be certified to teach in the state.
  285         2. Must be a resident of the state.
  286         2.3. Must have practiced the profession in this state for
  287  at least 5 years immediately preceding the appointment.
  288         (b) A school administrator member, in order to be qualified
  289  for appointment:
  290         1. Must have an endorsement on the educator certificate in
  291  the area of school administration or supervision.
  292         2. Must be a resident of the state.
  293         2.3. Must have practiced the profession as an administrator
  294  for at least 5 years immediately preceding the appointment.
  295         (c) The lay members must be residents of the state.
  296         (c)(d) The law enforcement official members must have
  297  served in the profession for at least 5 years immediately
  298  preceding appointment and have background expertise in child
  299  safety.
  300         (d) The Commissioner of Education, upon request or
  301  recommendation from the commission, may also appoint up to five
  302  emeritus members from the commission’s prior membership to serve
  303  1-year terms. Notwithstanding any prior service on the
  304  commission, an emeritus member may serve up to five 1-year
  305  terms. An emeritus member serves as a voting member at a
  306  discipline hearing and as a consulting but nonvoting member
  307  during a business meeting.
  308         (e) All members must be residents of the state.
  309         Section 8. Subsection (3) of section 1012.796, Florida
  310  Statutes, is amended to read:
  311         1012.796 Complaints against teachers and administrators;
  312  procedure; penalties.—
  313         (3) The department staff shall advise the commissioner
  314  concerning the findings of the investigation. The department
  315  general counsel or members of that staff shall review the
  316  investigation and advise the commissioner concerning probable
  317  cause or lack thereof. The determination of probable cause shall
  318  be made by the commissioner. The commissioner shall provide an
  319  opportunity for a conference, if requested, prior to determining
  320  probable cause. The commissioner may enter into deferred
  321  prosecution agreements in lieu of finding probable cause if, in
  322  his or her judgment, such agreements are in the best interests
  323  of the department, the certificateholder, and the public. Such
  324  deferred prosecution agreements shall become effective when
  325  filed with the clerk of the Education Practices Commission.
  326  However, a deferred prosecution agreement may shall not be
  327  entered into if there is probable cause to believe that a felony
  328  or an act of moral turpitude, as defined by rule of the State
  329  Board of Education, has occurred. Upon finding no probable
  330  cause, the commissioner shall dismiss the complaint and may
  331  issue a letter of guidance to the certificateholder.
  332         Section 9. This act shall take effect July 1, 2016.