Florida Senate - 2023                       CS for CS for SB 266
       By the Appropriations Committee on Education; the Committee on
       Education Postsecondary; and Senator Grall
       602-03778-23                                           2023266c2
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to higher education; amending s.
    3         1001.706, F.S.; revising the duties of the Board of
    4         Governors relating to the mission of each state
    5         university; revising requirements for the Board of
    6         Governors’ strategic plan relating to the goals and
    7         objectives of the State University System; requiring
    8         the Board of Governors to annually require each state
    9         university to include certain information in its
   10         economic security report; requiring, rather than
   11         authorizing, a Board of Governors regulation to
   12         include a post-tenure review of state university
   13         faculty on a specified basis; amending s. 1001.7065,
   14         F.S.; requiring the Board of Governors Accountability
   15         Plan to annually report certain research expenditures
   16         of a specified amount; revising the number of
   17         standards an institution must meet to receive a
   18         specified designation; creating s. 1001.741, F.S.;
   19         providing that each state university president is
   20         responsible for hiring the provost, the deans, and
   21         full-time faculty; providing that the president has a
   22         duty to assess the performance of the provost and
   23         deans; authorizing the president to delegate hiring
   24         authority to specified individuals and entities;
   25         prohibiting a university from using specified methods
   26         in its admissions or personnel processes; providing
   27         that certain actions regarding personnel may not be
   28         appealed beyond the university president; requiring
   29         each state university board of trustees to have review
   30         procedures for the president’s selection and
   31         reappointment of certain faculty; requiring each state
   32         university president to annually present specified
   33         performance evaluations and salaries to the board of
   34         trustees; amending s. 1004.06, F.S.; prohibiting
   35         specified educational institutions from expending
   36         funds to promote specified concepts; providing
   37         exceptions; requiring the State Board of Education and
   38         the Board of Governors to adopt rules and regulations,
   39         respectively; creating s. 1004.3841, F.S.; creating
   40         the Institute for Risk Management and Insurance
   41         Education within the College of Business at the
   42         University of Central Florida; requiring that the
   43         institute be located in a specified county; providing
   44         the purpose and goals of the institute; amending s.
   45         1004.6496, F.S.; authorizing the Board of Trustees of
   46         the University of Florida to use charitable donations
   47         in addition to appropriated funds to fund the Hamilton
   48         Center for Classical and Civic Education; revising the
   49         goals of the center; providing powers of the center;
   50         amending s. 1004.6499, F.S.; renaming the Florida
   51         Institute of Politics at the Florida State University
   52         as the Florida Institute for Governance and Civics;
   53         providing the goals of the institute; amending s.
   54         1004.64991, F.S.; authorizing the Adam Smith Center
   55         for the Study of Economic Freedom to perform certain
   56         tasks in order to carry out its established purpose;
   57         amending s. 1007.25, F.S.; revising how general
   58         education core courses are established; requiring the
   59         State Board of Education and the Board of Governors to
   60         consider approval of certain courses; requiring
   61         faculty committees to review and submit
   62         recommendations to the Articulation Coordinating
   63         Committee and the commissioner relating to certain
   64         courses by a specified date and periodically
   65         thereafter; prohibiting general education core courses
   66         from teaching certain topics or presenting information
   67         in specified ways; providing requirements for general
   68         education core courses; requiring specified
   69         educational institutions to offer certain courses;
   70         prohibiting public postsecondary educational
   71         institutions from requiring students to take certain
   72         additional general education core courses; creating s.
   73         1007.55, F.S.; providing legislative findings;
   74         providing requirements for general education courses;
   75         requiring public postsecondary educational institution
   76         boards of trustees and presidents to annually review
   77         and approve general education requirements; requiring
   78         public postsecondary educational institutions to
   79         report certain courses to the department; providing a
   80         penalty for failing to meet such review and approval
   81         requirements; prohibiting public postsecondary
   82         educational institutions from requiring students to
   83         take certain additional general education courses;
   84         requiring the State Board of Education and the Board
   85         of Governors to adopt rules and regulations,
   86         respectively; amending s. 1008.47, F.S.; specifying a
   87         one-time limit on the requirement to change
   88         accrediting agencies; providing for expiration;
   89         prohibiting an accrediting entity from requiring a
   90         public postsecondary institution to violate state law;
   91         amending s. 1009.26, F.S.; requiring the Board of
   92         Governors to identify state-approved teacher
   93         preparation programs eligible for a tuition waiver;
   94         providing that certain postsecondary fee waivers
   95         continue until specified criteria are met; providing
   96         an effective date.
   98  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
  100         Section 1. Paragraphs (a) through (d) of subsection (5) and
  101  paragraph (b) of subsection (6) of section 1001.706, Florida
  102  Statutes, are amended to read:
  103         1001.706 Powers and duties of the Board of Governors.—
  105         (a) The Legislature intends that the Board of Governors
  106  shall align the missions of each constituent university with the
  107  academic success of its students; the existing and emerging
  108  economic development needs of the state; the national reputation
  109  of its faculty and its academic and research programs; the
  110  quantity of externally generated research, patents, and
  111  licenses; and the strategic and accountability plans required in
  112  paragraphs (b) and (c). The Board of Governors shall
  113  periodically review the mission of each constituent university
  114  and make updates or revisions as needed. Upon completion of a
  115  review of the mission, the board shall review existing academic
  116  programs for alignment with the mission. The board shall include
  117  in its review a directive to each constituent university to
  118  examine its programs for any curriculum that violates s. 1000.05
  119  or that is based on theories that systemic racism, sexism,
  120  oppression, and privilege are inherent in the institutions of
  121  the United States and were created to maintain social,
  122  political, and economic inequities. The mission alignment and
  123  strategic plan must shall consider peer institutions at the
  124  constituent universities. The mission alignment and strategic
  125  plan must shall acknowledge that universities that have a
  126  national and international impact have the greatest capacity to
  127  promote the state’s economic development through: new
  128  discoveries, patents, licenses, and technologies that generate
  129  state businesses of global importance; research achievements
  130  through external grants and contracts that are comparable to
  131  nationally recognized and ranked universities; the creation of a
  132  resource rich academic environment that attracts high-technology
  133  business and venture capital to the state; and this generation’s
  134  finest minds focusing on solving the state’s economic, social,
  135  environmental, and legal problems in the areas of life sciences,
  136  water, sustainability, energy, and health care. A nationally
  137  recognized and ranked university that has a global perspective
  138  and impact must shall be afforded the opportunity to enable and
  139  protect the university’s competitiveness on the global stage in
  140  fair competition with other institutions of other states in the
  141  highest Carnegie Classification.
  142         (b) The Board of Governors shall develop a strategic plan
  143  specifying goals and objectives for the State University System
  144  and each constituent university, including each university’s
  145  contribution to overall system goals and objectives. The
  146  strategic plan must:
  147         1. Include performance metrics and standards common for all
  148  institutions and metrics and standards unique to institutions
  149  depending on institutional core missions, including, but not
  150  limited to, student admission requirements, retention,
  151  graduation, percentage of graduates who have attained
  152  employment, percentage of graduates enrolled in continued
  153  education, licensure passage, nondegree credential attainment,
  154  average wages of employed graduates, average cost per graduate,
  155  excess hours, student loan burden and default rates, faculty
  156  awards, total annual research expenditures, patents, licenses
  157  and royalties, intellectual property, startup companies, annual
  158  giving, endowments, and well-known, highly respected national
  159  rankings for institutional and program achievements.
  160         2. Consider reports and recommendations of the Florida
  161  Talent Development Council under s. 1004.015 and the
  162  Articulation Coordinating Committee under s. 1007.01.
  163         3. Include student enrollment and performance data
  164  delineated by method of instruction, including, but not limited
  165  to, traditional, online, and distance learning instruction.
  166         4. Include criteria for designating baccalaureate degree
  167  and master’s degree programs at specified universities as high
  168  demand programs of emphasis. The programs of emphasis list
  169  adopted by the Board of Governors before July 1, 2021, shall be
  170  used for the 2021-2022 academic year. Beginning in the 2022-2023
  171  academic year, the Board of Governors shall adopt the criteria
  172  to determine value for and prioritization of degree credentials
  173  and degree programs established by the Credentials Review
  174  Committee under s. 445.004 for designating high-demand programs
  175  of emphasis. The Board of Governors must review designated
  176  programs of emphasis, at a minimum, every 3 years to ensure
  177  alignment with the prioritization of degree credentials and
  178  degree programs identified by the Credentials Review Committee.
  179         5. Include criteria for nondegree credentials.
  180         (c) The Board of Governors shall develop an accountability
  181  plan for the State University System and each constituent
  182  university. The accountability plan must address institutional
  183  and system achievement of goals and objectives specified in the
  184  strategic plan adopted pursuant to paragraph (b) and must be
  185  submitted as part of its legislative budget request. Each
  186  university shall submit, as a component of the university’s
  187  annual accountability plan:,
  188         1. Information on the effectiveness of its plan for
  189  improving 4-year graduation rates; and
  190         2. The level of financial assistance provided to students
  191  pursuant to paragraph (h).
  192         (d) Beginning in the 2014-2015 academic year and annually
  193  thereafter, The Board of Governors shall annually require a
  194  state university prior to registration to provide each enrolled
  195  student electronic access to the economic security report of
  196  employment and earning outcomes prepared by the Department of
  197  Economic Opportunity pursuant to s. 445.07. In addition, the
  198  Board of Governors shall require a state university to provide
  199  each student electronic access to the following information each
  200  year prior to registration using the data described in s.
  201  1008.39:
  202         1. The top 25 percent of degrees reported by the university
  203  in terms of highest full-time job placement and highest average
  204  annualized earnings in the year after earning the degree.
  205         2. The bottom 10 percent of degrees reported by the
  206  university in terms of lowest full-time job placement and lowest
  207  average annualized earnings in the year after earning the
  208  degree.
  210         (b) The Board of Governors shall may adopt a regulation
  211  requiring each tenured state university faculty member to
  212  undergo a comprehensive post-tenure review every 5 years. The
  213  board may include other considerations in the regulation, but
  214  the regulation must address:
  215         1. Accomplishments and productivity;
  216         2. Assigned duties in research, teaching, and service;
  217         3. Performance metrics, evaluations, and ratings; and
  218         4. Recognition and compensation considerations, as well as
  219  improvement plans and consequences for underperformance.
  220         Section 2. Paragraph (m) is added to subsection (2) of
  221  section 1001.7065, Florida Statutes, and subsection (3) of that
  222  section is amended, to read:
  223         1001.7065 Preeminent state research universities program.—
  225  following academic and research excellence standards are
  226  established for the preeminent state research universities
  227  program and shall be reported annually in the Board of Governors
  228  Accountability Plan:
  229         (m) Total annual STEM-related research expenditures,
  230  including federal research expenditures, of $50 million or more.
  232         (a) The Board of Governors shall designate each state
  233  university that annually meets at least 12 11 of the 13 12
  234  academic and research excellence standards identified in
  235  subsection (2) as a “preeminent state research university.”
  236         (b) The Board of Governors shall designate each state
  237  university that annually meets at least 7 6 of the 13 12
  238  academic and research excellence standards identified in
  239  subsection (2) as an “emerging preeminent state research
  240  university.”
  241         Section 3. Section 1001.741, Florida Statutes, is created
  242  to read:
  243         1001.741State university personnel.—
  244         (1) Except as delegated pursuant to paragraph (a), each
  245  state university president has the final authority for hiring
  246  the provost, the deans, and all full-time faculty for the
  247  university, and has an ongoing duty to assess the performance,
  248  productivity, and employment practices of the university’s
  249  provost and deans. The president of the university is encouraged
  250  to engage in faculty recruiting as appropriate, and shall
  251  provide a regular report and recommendations on employment
  252  practices to the board at least twice annually.
  253         (a) The president may delegate hiring authority to
  254  individuals on the university’s executive management team within
  255  the president’s office, to the provost, or to individual deans;
  256  however, the president or the person delegated such hiring
  257  authority is not bound by the recommendations or opinions of
  258  faculty or other individuals.
  259         (b) A state university may not require any statement,
  260  pledge, or oath other than to uphold general and federal law,
  261  the United States Constitution, and the State Constitution as a
  262  part of any admissions, hiring, employment, promotion, tenure,
  263  disciplinary, or evaluation process.
  264         (2) Notwithstanding s. 447.401 or any other law, personnel
  265  actions or decisions regarding faculty, including in the areas
  266  of evaluations, promotions, tenure, discipline, or termination,
  267  may not be appealed beyond the level of a university president
  268  or designee. Such actions or decisions must have as their
  269  terminal step a final agency disposition, which must be issued
  270  in writing to the faculty member, and are not subject to
  271  arbitration. The filing of a grievance does not toll the action
  272  or decision of the university, including the termination of pay
  273  and benefits of a suspended or terminated faculty member.
  274         (3) Each state university board of trustees must have
  275  procedures for the review of the president’s selection and
  276  reappointment of each member of the university’s executive
  277  management team, and his or her respective contract and annual
  278  salary, before such contracts and salaries become effective, in
  279  accordance with the personnel program established by the Board
  280  of Governors.
  281         (4) Each state university president shall annually present
  282  to the state university board of trustees the results of
  283  performance evaluations and associated annual salaries for all
  284  evaluated academic and administrative personnel earning an
  285  annual salary of $200,000 or more, regardless of the funding
  286  source for such salaries. The results may be presented in a
  287  summary or written format.
  288         Section 4. Section 1004.06, Florida Statutes, is amended to
  289  read:
  290         1004.06 Prohibited expenditures.—
  291         (1)A No Florida College System institution, state
  292  university, Florida College System institution direct-support
  293  organization, or state university direct-support organization
  294  may not shall expend any funds, regardless of source, to
  295  purchase membership in, or goods and services from, any
  296  organization that discriminates on the basis of race, color,
  297  national origin, sex, disability gender, or religion.
  298         (2) A Florida College System institution, state university,
  299  Florida College System institution direct-support organization,
  300  or state university direct-support organization may not expend
  301  any funds, regardless of source, to promote, support, or
  302  maintain any programs or campus activities that:
  303         (a) Violate s. 1000.05; or
  304         (b) Are based on theories that systemic racism, sexism,
  305  oppression, and privilege are inherent in the institutions of
  306  the United States and were created to maintain social,
  307  political, and economic inequities.
  308         (3) Subsection (2) does not prohibit programs or campus
  309  activities and functions required for compliance with federal
  310  laws or regulations; for obtaining or retaining institutional or
  311  discipline-specific accreditation; for securing or retaining
  312  research contracts, grants, and cooperative agreements; or for
  313  access programs for military veterans, Pell Grant recipients,
  314  first generation college students, nontraditional students,
  315  “2+2” transfer students from the Florida College System,
  316  students from low-income families, or students with unique
  317  abilities.
  318         (4) The State Board of Education and the Board of Governors
  319  shall adopt rules and regulations, respectively, to implement
  320  this section.
  321         Section 5. Section 1004.3841, Florida Statutes, is created
  322  to read:
  323         1004.3841The Institute for Risk Management and Insurance
  324  Education.—The Institute for Risk Management and Insurance
  325  Education is established within the College of Business at the
  326  University of Central Florida. Since insurance and risk
  327  management is a major industry in the state, with a
  328  concentration of such industry in Volusia County, the institute
  329  shall be located in Volusia County. Like many other industries
  330  in the state, the insurance and risk management industry is
  331  being revolutionized by, among other things, the integration of
  332  technology, predictive analytics, and data science, and is
  333  becoming more complex, given its exposure to transformative
  334  trends in the economy and environment. The purpose of the
  335  institute is to respond to the ever-evolving insurance and risk
  336  management industry and the present and emerging needs of this
  337  state and its residents. The goals of the institute are to:
  338         (1)Pursue technological innovations that advance risk
  339  valuation models and operational efficiencies in the insurance
  340  industry.
  341         (2)Drive the development of workforce competencies in data
  342  analytics, system-level thinking, technology integration,
  343  entrepreneurship, and actuarial science.
  344         (3)Leverage the University of Central Florida’s world
  345  class assets in data science, artificial intelligence, computer
  346  science, engineering, finance, economics, and sales.
  347         (4)Take advantage of the University of Central Florida’s
  348  robust portfolio of academic program offerings and draw on
  349  faculty and industry experts in diverse fields, including
  350  actuarial science, computer science, economics, engineering,
  351  environmental science, finance, forensics, law, management,
  352  marketing, and psychology.
  353         (5)Develop and offer risk management and insurance
  354  education, including education that recognizes risks in areas
  355  such as the environment, pandemic disease, and digital security.
  356         (6)Offer programs, workshops, case studies, and applied
  357  research studies that integrate technology and artificial
  358  intelligence with soft skills while preparing students and
  359  professionals for the technology-enabled insurance industry of
  360  the future.
  361         Section 6. Section 1004.6496, Florida Statutes, is amended
  362  to read:
  363         1004.6496 Hamilton Center for Classical and Civic
  364  Education.—
  365         (1) By July 1, 2024, the Board of Trustees of the
  366  University of Florida may use funds as provided in the General
  367  Appropriations Act and charitable donations to establish and
  368  fund the Hamilton Center for Classical and Civic Education as an
  369  academic unit within the University of Florida. The purpose of
  370  the center is to support teaching and research concerning the
  371  ideas, traditions, and texts that form the foundations of
  372  Western and American civilization.
  373         (2) The goals of the center are to:
  374         (a) Educate university students in core texts and great
  375  debates of Western civilization and the Great Books.
  376         (b) Educate university students in the principles, ideals,
  377  and institutions of the American political order.
  378         (c) Educate university students in the foundations of
  379  responsible leadership and informed citizenship.
  380         (d) Provide programming and training related to civic
  381  education and the values of open inquiry and civil discourse to
  382  support the K-20 system.
  383         (e) Coordinate with the Florida Institute for Governance
  384  and Civics of Politics created pursuant to s. 1004.6499 and the
  385  Adam Smith Center for the Study of Economic Freedom created
  386  pursuant to s. 1004.64991 and assist in the curation and
  387  implementation of Portraits in Patriotism created pursuant to s.
  388  1003.44.
  389         (3) In order to carry out the purposes set forth in
  390  subsection (2), the center is authorized to:
  391         (a) Hire necessary faculty and staff pursuant to s.
  392  1001.741;
  393         (b)Enroll students;
  394         (c) Develop curriculum and offer new courses, including
  395  honors courses, certificates, and major and minor programs;
  396         (d) Hold events, including fundraisers;
  397         (e) Fulfill other actions approved by the president of the
  398  university; and
  399         (f) Generate resources based on student credit hour
  400  enrollment, in the same manner as any other center within the
  401  institution.
  402         (4)The president of the university may hire a director for
  403  the center.
  404         (a) The president of the university may remove the director
  405  in accordance with the policies and procedures established at
  406  the university.
  407         (b) The director of the center must report directly to the
  408  president or provost of the university.
  409         (5) Faculty of the center may be awarded tenure, subject to
  410  the tenure regulations adopted by the university board of
  411  trustees.
  412         (6) Funds appropriated specifically to the center may not
  413  be used for any other purpose at the university; however, the
  414  university can provide additional funding as available to the
  415  center.
  416         Section 7. Section 1004.6499, Florida Statutes, is amended
  417  to read:
  418         1004.6499 Florida Institute for Governance and Civics of
  419  Politics.—
  420         (1) The Florida Institute for Governance and Civics of
  421  Politics is established at the Florida State University within
  422  the College of Social Sciences and Public Policy. The purpose of
  423  the institute is to provide the southeastern region of the
  424  United States with a world class, bipartisan, nationally
  425  renowned institute of politics.
  426         (2) The goals of the institute are to:
  427         (a) Provide students with access to an interdisciplinary
  428  hub that will develop academically rigorous scholarship and
  429  coursework on the origins of the American system of government,
  430  its foundational documents, its subsequent political traditions
  431  and evolutions, and its impact on comparative political systems
  432  Motivate students throughout the Florida State University to
  433  become aware of the significance of government and civic
  434  engagement at all levels and politics in general.
  435         (b) Encourage civic literacy in this state through the
  436  development of educational tools and resources for K-12 and
  437  postsecondary students which foster an understanding of how
  438  individual rights, constitutionalism, separation of powers, and
  439  federalism function within the American system Provide students
  440  with an opportunity to be politically active and civically
  441  engaged.
  442         (c) Model civic discourse that recognizes the importance of
  443  viewpoint diversity, intellectual rigor, and an evidence-based
  444  approach to history Nurture a greater awareness of and passion
  445  for public service and politics.
  446         (d) Plan and host forums to allow students and guests to
  447  hear from exceptional individuals who have excelled in a wide
  448  range of sectors of American life, to highlight the
  449  possibilities created by individual achievement and
  450  entrepreneurial vision and interact with experts from
  451  government, politics, policy, and journalism on a frequent
  452  basis.
  453         (e) Become a national and state resource on using polling
  454  instruments and other assessments to measure civic literacy and
  455  make recommendations for improving civic education information
  456  and survey methodology.
  457         (f) Provide fellowships and internship opportunities to
  458  students in government, nonprofit organizations, and community
  459  organizations.
  460         (g) Create through scholarship, original research,
  461  publications, symposia, testimonials, and other means a body of
  462  resources that can be accessed by students, scholars, and
  463  government officials to understand the innovations in public
  464  policy in this state over a rolling 30-year time period Provide
  465  training sessions for newly elected state and local public
  466  officials.
  467         (h) Organize and sponsor conferences, symposia, and
  468  workshops throughout this state to educate and inform citizens,
  469  elected officials, and appointed policymakers regarding
  470  effective policymaking techniques and processes.
  471         (i) Create and promote research and awareness regarding
  472  politics, citizen involvement, and public service.
  473         (j) Collaborate with related policy institutes and research
  474  activities at the Florida State University and other
  475  institutions of higher education to motivate, increase, and
  476  sustain citizen involvement in public affairs.
  477         Section 8. Subsection (3) is added to section 1004.64991,
  478  Florida Statutes, to read:
  479         1004.64991 The Adam Smith Center for the Study of Economic
  480  Freedom.—
  481         (3) In order to carry out the purpose set forth in this
  482  section, the institute is authorized to:
  483         (a) Hire necessary faculty and staff pursuant to s.
  484  1001.741;
  485         (b) Enroll students;
  486         (c) Develop curriculum and offer new courses, including
  487  honors courses, certificates, and major and minor programs;
  488         (d) Hold events, including fundraisers;
  489         (e) Fulfill other actions approved by the president of the
  490  university; and
  491         (f) Generate resources based on student credit hour
  492  enrollment, in the same manner as any college within the
  493  institution.
  494         Section 9. Subsection (3) of section 1007.25, Florida
  495  Statutes, is amended to read:
  496         1007.25 General education courses; common prerequisites;
  497  other degree requirements.—
  498         (3) The chair of the State Board of Education and the chair
  499  of the Board of Governors, or their designees, shall jointly
  500  appoint faculty committees to review and recommend to the
  501  Articulation Coordinating Committee for approval by the State
  502  Board of Education and the Board of Governors identify statewide
  503  general education core course options for inclusion in the
  504  statewide course numbering system established under s. 1007.24.
  505  Faculty committees shall, by July 1, 2024, and by July 1 every 4
  506  years thereafter, review and submit recommendations to the
  507  Articulation Coordinating Committee and the commissioner for the
  508  removal, alignment, realignment, or addition of general
  509  education core courses that satisfy the requirements of this
  510  subsection.
  511         (a) General education core course options shall consist of
  512  a maximum of five courses within each of the subject areas of
  513  communication, mathematics, social sciences, humanities, and
  514  natural sciences. The core courses may be revised, or the five
  515  course maximum within each subject area may be exceeded, if
  516  approved by the State Board of Education and the Board of
  517  Governors, as recommended by the subject area faculty committee
  518  and approved by the Articulation Coordinating Committee as
  519  necessary for a subject area.
  520         (b) Each general education core course option must contain
  521  high-level academic and critical thinking skills and common
  522  competencies that students must demonstrate to successfully
  523  complete the course.
  524         (c) General education core courses may not distort
  525  significant historical events or include a curriculum that
  526  teaches identity politics, violates s. 1000.05, or is based on
  527  theories that systemic racism, sexism, oppression, and privilege
  528  are inherent in the institutions of the United States and were
  529  created to maintain social, political, and economic inequities.
  530         (d) General education core courses must meet the following
  531  standards:
  532         1.Communication courses must afford students the ability
  533  to communicate effectively, including the ability to write
  534  clearly and engage in public speaking.
  535         2.Humanities courses must afford students the ability to
  536  think critically through the mastering of subjects concerned
  537  with human culture, especially literature, history, art, music,
  538  and philosophy, and must include selections from the Western
  539  canon.
  540         3.Social science courses must afford students an
  541  understanding of the basic social and behavioral science
  542  concepts and principles used in the analysis of behavior and
  543  past and present social, political, and economic issues.
  544         4.Natural science courses must afford students the ability
  545  to critically examine and evaluate the principles of the
  546  scientific method, model construction, and use the scientific
  547  method to explain natural experiences and phenomena.
  548         5.Mathematics courses must afford students a mastery of
  549  foundational mathematical and computation models and methods by
  550  applying such models and methods in problem solving.
  551         (e) Beginning with students initially entering a Florida
  552  College System institution or state university in 2015-2016 and
  553  thereafter, each student must complete at least one identified
  554  core course in each subject area as part of the general
  555  education course requirements. Beginning in the 2022-2023
  556  academic year and thereafter, students entering a technical
  557  degree education program as defined in s. 1004.02(13) must
  558  complete at least one identified core course in each subject
  559  area as part of the general education course requirements before
  560  a degree is awarded.
  561         (f) All public postsecondary educational institutions shall
  562  offer at least one general education core course in each of the
  563  identified subject areas and accept these courses as meeting
  564  general education core course requirements upon transfer,
  565  regardless of whether the receiving institution offers the
  566  identical general education core courses. The remaining general
  567  education course requirements shall be identified by each
  568  institution as approved in accordance with this section and
  569  listed in the statewide course numbering system and reported to
  570  the department by their statewide course number.
  571         (g) A public postsecondary educational institution may not
  572  require a student to complete an additional course to meet a
  573  subject area distribution requirement that was completed by the
  574  student with a course that has since been removed as a general
  575  education core course.
  576         (h) The general education core course options shall be
  577  adopted in rule by the State Board of Education and in
  578  regulation by the Board of Governors.
  579         Section 10. Section 1007.55, Florida Statutes, is created
  580  to read:
  581         1007.55 General education course principles, standards, and
  582  content.—
  583         (1) The Legislature finds it necessary to ensure that every
  584  undergraduate student of a Florida public postsecondary
  585  educational institution graduates as an informed citizen through
  586  participation in rigorous general education courses that promote
  587  and preserve the constitutional republic through traditional,
  588  historically accurate, and high-quality coursework. General
  589  education courses should provide broad foundational knowledge to
  590  help students develop intellectual skills and habits that enable
  591  them to become more effective and lifelong learners. Courses
  592  with a curriculum based on unproven, speculative, or exploratory
  593  content are best suited as elective or specific program
  594  prerequisite credit, not general education credit. General
  595  education courses must:
  596         (a)Meet the course standards as provided in s. 1007.25;
  597  and
  598         (b) Whenever applicable, provide instruction on the
  599  historical background and philosophical foundation of Western
  600  civilization and this nation’s historical documents, such as the
  601  Declaration of Independence, the United States Constitution, the
  602  Bill of Rights and subsequent amendments, and the Federalist
  603  Papers.
  604         (2) Public postsecondary educational institution boards of
  605  trustees and presidents are responsible for annually reviewing
  606  and approving, at a public meeting, general education course
  607  requirements, as authorized and approved in accordance with ss.
  608  1007.24 and 1007.25 and this section, at their respective
  609  institutions. The following must be included for each listed
  610  general education course:
  611         (a) The general education distribution area;
  612         (b) The number of state universities that offer the course
  613  and the number of Florida College System institutions that offer
  614  the course; and
  615         (c) The course level.
  616         (3) Each public postsecondary educational institution must
  617  annually submit to the Board of Governors or the State Board of
  618  Education, as applicable, the institution’s listing of approved
  619  general education courses, which must include the information in
  620  paragraphs (2)(a), (b), and (c). The applicable board must
  621  approve the institution general education course lists.
  622         (4) Public postsecondary educational institutions must
  623  report courses meeting institutional general education subject
  624  requirements to the department by their statewide course number.
  625         (5) Public postsecondary educational institutions that fail
  626  to comply with the requirements of this section are not eligible
  627  to receive performance-based funding pursuant to ss. 1001.66 or
  628  1001.92.
  629         (6) A public postsecondary educational institution may not
  630  require a student to take an additional course to meet a subject
  631  area distribution requirement that was completed by the student
  632  with a course that has since been removed as a general education
  633  course.
  634         (7) The State Board of Education and the Board of Governors
  635  shall adopt rules and regulations, respectively, to implement
  636  this section.
  637         Section 11. Present subsections (3) and (4) of section
  638  1008.47, Florida Statutes, are redesignated as subsections (4)
  639  and (5), respectively, a new subsection (3) is added to that
  640  section, and subsection (2) and present subsection (3) of that
  641  section are amended, to read:
  642         1008.47 Postsecondary education institution accreditation.—
  643         (2) ACCREDITATION.—
  644         (a) By September 1, 2022, the Board of Governors or the
  645  State Board of Education, as applicable, shall identify and
  646  determine the accrediting agencies or associations best suited
  647  to serve as an accreditor for public postsecondary institutions.
  648  Such accrediting agencies or associations must be recognized by
  649  the database created and maintained by the United States
  650  Department of Education. A public postsecondary institution may
  651  not be accredited by the same accrediting agency or association
  652  for consecutive accreditation cycles. In the year following
  653  reaffirmation or fifth-year review by its accrediting agencies
  654  or associations, each public postsecondary institution must seek
  655  and obtain accreditation from an accrediting agency or
  656  association identified by the Board of Governors or State Board
  657  of Education, respectively, before its next reaffirmation or
  658  fifth-year review date. The requirements in this section are
  659  limited to a one-time change in accreditation. The requirements
  660  of this subsection are not applicable to those professional,
  661  graduate, departmental, or certificate programs at public
  662  postsecondary institutions that have specific accreditation
  663  requirements or best practices, including, but not limited to,
  664  law, pharmacy, engineering, or other similarly situated
  665  educational programs.
  666         (b) Once a public postsecondary institution is required to
  667  seek and obtain accreditation from an agency or association
  668  identified pursuant to paragraph (a), the institution shall seek
  669  accreditation from a regional accrediting agency or association
  670  and provide quarterly reports of its progress to the Board of
  671  Governors or State Board of Education, as applicable. If each
  672  regional accreditation agency or association identified pursuant
  673  to paragraph (a) has refused to grant candidacy status to an
  674  institution, the institution must shall seek and obtain
  675  accreditation from any accrediting agency or association that is
  676  different from its current accrediting agency or association and
  677  is recognized by the database created and maintained by the
  678  United States Department of Education. If a public postsecondary
  679  institution is not granted candidacy status before its next
  680  reaffirmation or fifth-year review date, the institution may
  681  remain with its current accrediting agency or association.
  682         (c) This subsection expires December 31, 2032.
  683         (3) PROHIBITION.—An accrediting agency or association may
  684  not compel any public postsecondary institution to violate state
  685  law, and any adverse action upon the institution based upon the
  686  institution’s compliance with state law constitutes a violation
  687  of this section that may be enforced through subsection (4),
  688  except to the extent that state law is preempted by a federal
  689  law that recognizes the necessity of the accreditation standard
  690  or requirement.
  691         (4)(3) CAUSE OF ACTION.—A postsecondary education
  692  institution negatively impacted by retaliatory or adverse action
  693  taken against the postsecondary education institution by an
  694  accrediting agency or association may bring an action against
  695  the accrediting agency or association in a court of competent
  696  jurisdiction and may obtain liquidated damages in up to the
  697  amount of federal financial aid received by the postsecondary
  698  education institution, court costs, and reasonable attorney
  699  fees.
  700         Section 12. Paragraphs (a), (b), and (c) of subsection (18)
  701  of section 1009.26, Florida Statutes, are amended to read:
  702         1009.26 Fee Waivers.—
  703         (18)(a) For every course in a Program of Strategic
  704  Emphasis, or in a state-approved teacher preparation program
  705  identified by the Board of Governors, as identified in
  706  subparagraph 3., in which a student is enrolled, a state
  707  university shall waive 100 percent of the tuition and fees for
  708  an equivalent course in such program for a student who:
  709         1. Is a resident for tuition purposes under s. 1009.21.
  710         2. Has earned at least 60 semester credit hours towards a
  711  baccalaureate degree within 2 academic years after initial
  712  enrollment at a Florida public postsecondary institution.
  713         3. Enrolls in one of 10 Programs of Strategic Emphasis as
  714  adopted by the Board of Governors or in one of two state
  715  approved teacher preparation programs identified by the Board of
  716  Governors. The Board of Governors shall adopt eight Programs of
  717  Strategic Emphasis in science, technology, engineering, or math;
  718  and, beginning with the 2022-2023 academic year, two Programs of
  719  Strategic Emphasis in the critical workforce gap analysis
  720  category; and beginning with the 2023-2024 academic year, two
  721  state-approved teacher preparation programs for which a student
  722  may be eligible to receive the tuition and fee waiver authorized
  723  by this subsection. The programs identified by the board must
  724  reflect the priorities of the state and be offered at a majority
  725  of state universities at the time the Board of Governors
  726  approves the list.
  727         (b) A waiver granted under this subsection is applicable
  728  only for upper-level courses and up to 110 percent of the number
  729  of required credit hours of the baccalaureate degree program for
  730  which the student is enrolled. A student granted a waiver under
  731  this subsection shall continue receiving the waiver until the
  732  student graduates, exceeds the number of allowable credit hours,
  733  or withdraws from an eligible program, regardless of whether the
  734  program is removed from the approved list of eligible programs
  735  subsequent to the student’s enrollment.
  736         (c) Upon enrollment in a Program of Strategic Emphasis or
  737  in one of two teacher preparation programs identified by the
  738  Board of Governors, the tuition and fees waived under this
  739  subsection must be reported for state funding purposes under ss.
  740  1009.534 and 1009.535 and must be disbursed to the student. The
  741  amount disbursed to the student must shall be equal to the award
  742  amount the student has received under s. 1009.534(2) or s.
  743  1009.535(2).
  744         Section 13. This act shall take effect July 1, 2023.