Florida Senate - 2017                             CS for SB 1368
       By the Committee on Education; and Senators Perry and Mayfield
       581-03363-17                                          20171368c1
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to exceptional students; amending s.
    3         1002.20, F.S; authorizing a parent to request and be
    4         granted permission for a student’s absence from school
    5         for treatment of autism spectrum disorder by a
    6         licensed health care practitioner; amending s.
    7         1003.21, F.S.; requiring each district school board to
    8         adopt an attendance policy authorizing a student’s
    9         absence for treatment of autism spectrum disorder;
   10         amending s. 1003.24, F.S.; revising an exemption
   11         relating to parental responsibility for nonattendance
   12         of a student to include treatment for autism spectrum
   13         disorder; amending s. 1003.57, F.S.; prohibiting
   14         certain school districts from declining to provide or
   15         contract for certain students’ educational
   16         instruction; providing for funding of such students;
   17         providing an effective date.
   19  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   21         Section 1. Paragraph (c) of subsection (2) of section
   22  1002.20, Florida Statutes, is amended, present paragraph (d) is
   23  redesignated as paragraph (e), and a new paragraph (d) is added
   24  to that subsection, to read:
   25         1002.20 K-12 student and parent rights.—Parents of public
   26  school students must receive accurate and timely information
   27  regarding their child’s academic progress and must be informed
   28  of ways they can help their child to succeed in school. K-12
   29  students and their parents are afforded numerous statutory
   30  rights, including, but not limited to, the following:
   31         (2) ATTENDANCE.—
   32         (c) Absence for religious purposes.—A parent of a public
   33  school student may request and be granted permission for absence
   34  of the student from school for religious instruction or
   35  religious holidays, in accordance with the provisions of s.
   36  1003.21(2)(b)1 1003.21(2)(b).
   37         (d)Absence for treatment of autism spectrum disorder.—A
   38  parent of a public school student may request and be granted
   39  permission for absence of the student from school for an
   40  appointment scheduled to receive a therapy service or other
   41  medical treatment provided by a licensed health care
   42  practitioner for the treatment of autism spectrum disorder
   43  pursuant to ss. 1003.21(2)(b)2. and 1003.24(4).
   44         Section 2. Paragraph (b) of subsection (2) of section
   45  1003.21, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
   46         1003.21 School attendance.—
   47         (2)
   48         (b) Each district school board, in accordance with rules of
   49  the State Board of Education, shall adopt policies authorizing a
   50  policy that authorizes a parent to request and be granted
   51  permission for absence of a student from school for:
   52         1. Religious instruction or religious holidays.
   53         2.An appointment scheduled to receive a therapy service or
   54  other medical treatment provided by a licensed health care
   55  practitioner for the treatment of autism spectrum disorder,
   56  including, but not limited to, applied behavioral analysis,
   57  speech therapy, and occupational therapy.
   58         Section 3. Subsection (4) of section 1003.24, Florida
   59  Statutes, is amended to read:
   60         1003.24 Parents responsible for attendance of children;
   61  attendance policy.—Each parent of a child within the compulsory
   62  attendance age is responsible for the child’s school attendance
   63  as required by law. The absence of a student from school is
   64  prima facie evidence of a violation of this section; however,
   65  criminal prosecution under this chapter may not be brought
   66  against a parent until the provisions of s. 1003.26 have been
   67  complied with. A parent of a student is not responsible for the
   68  student’s nonattendance at school under any of the following
   69  conditions:
   71  Attendance was impracticable or inadvisable on account of
   72  sickness or injury, as attested to by a written statement of a
   73  licensed practicing physician, or a written statement of a
   74  licensed health care practitioner for the treatment of autism
   75  spectrum disorder, or was impracticable because of some other
   76  stated insurmountable condition as defined by rules of the State
   77  Board of Education. If a student is continually sick and
   78  repeatedly absent from school, he or she must be under the
   79  supervision of a physician, or care of a licensed health care
   80  practitioner for the treatment of autism spectrum disorder, in
   81  order to receive an excuse from attendance. Such excuse provides
   82  that a student’s condition justifies absence for more than the
   83  number of days permitted by the district school board.
   85  Each district school board shall establish an attendance policy
   86  that includes, but is not limited to, the required number of
   87  days each school year that a student must be in attendance and
   88  the number of absences and tardinesses after which a statement
   89  explaining such absences and tardinesses must be on file at the
   90  school. Each school in the district must determine if an absence
   91  or tardiness is excused or unexcused according to criteria
   92  established by the district school board.
   93         Section 4. Subsection (3) of section 1003.57, Florida
   94  Statutes, is amended to read:
   95         1003.57 Exceptional students instruction.—
   96         (3)(a) For purposes of this subsection and subsection (4),
   97  the term:
   98         1. “Agency” means the Department of Children and Families
   99  or its contracted lead agency, the Agency for Persons with
  100  Disabilities, and the Agency for Health Care Administration.
  101         2. “Exceptional student” means an exceptional student, as
  102  defined in s. 1003.01, who has a disability.
  103         3. “Receiving school district” means the district in which
  104  a private residential care facility is located.
  105         4. “Placement” means the funding or arrangement of funding
  106  by an agency for all or a part of the cost for an exceptional
  107  student to reside in a private residential care facility and the
  108  placement crosses school district lines.
  109         (b) Within 10 business days after an exceptional student is
  110  placed in a private residential care facility by an agency, the
  111  agency or private residential care facility licensed by the
  112  agency, as appropriate, shall provide written notification of
  113  the placement to the school district where the student is
  114  currently counted for funding purposes under s. 1011.62 and the
  115  receiving school district. The exceptional student shall be
  116  enrolled in school and receive a free and appropriate public
  117  education, special education, and related services while the
  118  notice and procedures regarding payment are pending. This
  119  paragraph applies when the placement is for the primary purpose
  120  of addressing residential or other noneducational needs and the
  121  placement crosses school district lines.
  122         (c) Within 10 business days after receiving the
  123  notification, the receiving school district must review the
  124  student’s individual educational plan (IEP) to determine if the
  125  student’s IEP can be implemented by the receiving school
  126  district or by a provider or facility under contract with the
  127  receiving school district. The receiving school district shall:
  128         1. Provide educational instruction to the student;
  129         2. Contract with another provider or facility to provide
  130  the educational instruction; or
  131         3. Contract with the private residential care facility in
  132  which the student resides to provide the educational
  133  instruction; or
  134         4.Decline to provide or contract for educational
  135  instruction.
  137  If the receiving school district declines to provide or contract
  138  for the educational instruction, the school district in which
  139  the legal residence of the student is located shall provide or
  140  contract for the educational instruction to the student. The
  141  receiving school district providing that provides educational
  142  instruction or contracting contracts to provide educational
  143  instruction shall report the student for funding purposes
  144  pursuant to s. 1011.62.
  145         (d)1. The Department of Education, in consultation with the
  146  agencies and school districts, shall develop procedures for
  147  written notification to school districts regarding the placement
  148  of an exceptional student in a residential care facility. The
  149  procedures must:
  150         a. Provide for written notification of a placement that
  151  crosses school district lines; and
  152         b. Identify the entity responsible for the notification for
  153  each facility that is operated, licensed, or regulated by an
  154  agency.
  155         2. The State Board of Education shall adopt the procedures
  156  by rule pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54, and the agencies
  157  shall implement the procedures.
  159  The requirements of paragraphs (c) and (d) do not apply to
  160  written agreements among school districts which specify each
  161  school district’s responsibility for providing and paying for
  162  educational services to an exceptional student in a residential
  163  care facility. However, each agreement must require a school
  164  district to review the student’s IEP within 10 business days
  165  after receiving the notification required under paragraph (b).
  166         Section 5. This act shall take effect July 1, 2017.