January 28, 2016
The following is a summary of the State Board of Education’s legislative meeting, the first of weekly meetings held each Thursday at the Capitol during the Legislative session.
The State Board of Education had its first non-Board meeting legislative discussion on Thursday, January 28, 2016 in room 210 at the State Capitol. 9 Board members attended: Leslie Castle, Linda Hansen, Dave Crandall, Jennifer Johnson, Dixie Allen, Dave Thomas, Terryl Warner, Brittney Cummins and Laura Belnap.
The Board has moved to primarily hearing and questioning legislators rather than internally debating bills and taking Board positions on bills.
Sen. Thatcher attended the Board meeting to report on the progress of the Student Safety Tip Line, a bill that passed in the 2015 session. The Senator and the Board honored Lillian Tsosie-Jensen, a USOE employee, for her USOE leadership in implementing the hot line.
Representative Anderegg discussed three bills that he will sponsor this session, all related to student records and student privacy. The bills are in process and not yet numbered. The first bill will be similar to the student privacy bill from the 2015 session. Rep. Anderegg’s main point about the repeat bill was that the bill will allow parents to have their children’s/students’ records removed the central USOE student record database—once the records are in the database, but not at the inception of their submission. Board member Castle said that she would appreciate if the bill would address whether the USOE has to maintain student records indefinitely. She said that has been a concern of hers. A second bill would explain a longitudinal data management system. Such a system (or similar) has been maintained by UETN, this would “shore up” UETN efforts. The system would still reside w/UETN and be housed at DWS. The student information, according to Rep. Anderegg, would be maintained as “de-identified and aggregated.” The bill would not disallow required state and federal government reporting. The third bill would be an apprenticeship authorization. It would create a new pathway for students to receive training that is not necessarily pre-college or early college, but would help students have skills.
Board member Linda Hansen questioned whether students exiting under an apprenticeship program would affect the increased student graduation rate, which is something the State Board has made a priority? The response was that these students would not negatively affect the graduation rate.
The Board discussed and expressed official support (by a vote of 8-1, Board member Castle opposing the support) for SJR 12—Proposal to Change Utah Constitution—Changes to School Funds, sponsored by Sen. Millner.
Senator Weiler discussed SB 43 Firearm Safety and Violence Prevention in Public Schools. He noted that the program is voluntary for both LEAs and for parents/students within a school. The bill does not advocate using real guns for training in classrooms, but rather focuses on teaching students to tell an adult if they see a gun. Board member Castle expressed her concern that Sen. Weiler has no data and she has seen no data supporting the effectiveness of these programs. Another Board member expressed the concern that gun safety is really a community and family concern and perhaps too many community and social problems detract from school resources and time. There is a $75,000 fiscal note, with funds taken from the General Fund, that would be available for the pilot program, should the bill pass.
January 8, 2016
The following are highlights, issues of interest from the State Board Law and Licensing Committee on Jan. 6, 2016 (6:30-9 p.m.) and the Board meeting, Jan. 7, 2016
1. The USOE Finance Director (Natalie Grange) proposed requesting a change to the law or a prospective Board Rule that would clean up an accounting issue. The issue affects only a handful of districts, but for those districts, the additional state money is important. About 100 Utah students cross into other states from various school districts, due to convenience, geographical distance, student safety. Utah Code §53A-2-204 currently allows the districts to count the students as enrolled in Utah districts, pay the receiving districts the WPU AND , per statute, the student’s resident district should cover the excess cost—unless there is prior USOE approval. According to the USOE Finance staff, this advance USOE approval process has been inconsistent.
The Committee and subsequently the Board approved a prospective rule that will standardize the agreements and payments by the USOE.
2. The Committee delayed a decision on Ascent Academies’ (a large, Academica West-managed charter school) request for an additional satellite location. The Committee wants more information and wants the Ascent Academies directors to meet with the Board prior to approval.
3. The Committee and the Board passed R277-716 Alternative Language Services for Utah Students on first (Committee) and second (Board) reading, with little discussion.
4. The Committee and the Board passed R277-494 Charter School and Online Student Participation in Extracurricular /Co-curricular School Activities on 2nd and 3rd readings, respectively. There was minimal discussion. The new rule provides specific definitions for “co-curricular activities” and “extra-curricular activities.” One significant change in the rule is that now charter and online school students must be allowed to participate in co-curricular (including gifted and talented programs, summer programs, science/history fairs)– not just extra-curricular activities, such as football, band, soccer, etc. The charter or online school must pay the same $75 fee per student (and the student’s payment of required participation fees) that have been paid for many years. The fee allows each student to participate in all co-curricular and extra-curricular activities of his choice. The charter or online school must pay the participation fees for fee-waiver eligible students to the schools where the students choose to participate.
Given the new co-curricular definitions and additions, this rule (beginning with the effective date in February, 2016) will require revised practices from school districts. Charter schools MAY allow other charter school students and online students to participate in extra-curricular and co-curricular activities; traditional schools MUST allow charter and online school students to participate in extra-curricular and co-curricular activities—upon payment of all required fees.
5. The Law and Licensing Committee had an interesting discussion about proposing a change to Utah Code §53a-11-802, Prohibition of Corporal Punishment. The Disability Law Center and other advocates for students with disabilities will propose changing the current statute which allows public school employees to use: reasonable and necessary physical restraint or force in self defense or otherwise appropriate to the circumstances to:
(a) obtain possession of a weapon or other dangerous object in the possession or under the control of a child;
(b) protect the child or another person from physical injury;
(c) remove from a situation a child who is violent or disruptive; or
(d) protect property from being damaged.
The Disability Law center requested that the Board recommend a statute change to delete allowing “physical restraint” of students by school employees to protect against property damage. There was an extended discussion where Board members and USOE/Disability Law Center staff explained “physical restraint” as an IDEA term. The Committee and the Board supported the recommendation following an amendment to proposed language to include definitions of “physical restraint” and “corporal punishment” in the amended statute.
6. The Law and Licensing Committee had an extended discussion about the proposed R277-505 Administrative Areas of Concentration and Programs. The proposed rule outlines a process where the Board could give a non-educator an “education leadership area of concentration”
a. The rule promotes the premise and some of the same concepts of HB 197, passed by the 2015 Legislature and vetoed by the Governor.
b. Rep. Coleman wanted a process for a qualified individual to receive, not just a district specific or charter specific license (to be valid only at a specific LEA), but a Board-issued license for school administrators. Under Rep. Coleman’s bill and under the concept of the proposed rule, these non-educators would have a fully-transferable, State issued educator “license area of concentration.”
c. The proposed rule was amended in the committee to have the license area of concentration issued by the Board rather than the Superintendent.
d. The rule still presents some uncertainties: (1) it doesn’t provide for a license (except for the LEA-specific type (line 358 in proposed rule), just an area of concentration that must attach to a license; (2) presuming there would be a license, would it be a level I, 2 or 3? (3) Would the license-holder be responsible for all educator requirements: regular professional development, a CACTUS record, ethics exam?
The Committee did not pass the rule on to the Board. Rather, it voted to consult with Rep. Coleman again.
7. The Board had a lengthy discussion of its proposed budget. The Salt Lake Tribune’s subsequent summary captured the high/low points of the discussion:
a. The main tension was between Board members (notably Linda Hansen and Mark Huntsman) who urged the Board to “trust our districts and charters schools” and Board members (David Thomas and Jennifer Johnson) who preferred putting “parameters” around local use and control of funds.
b. Vice-chair and Board Legislative liaison Dave Thomas proposed a specific line in the Board’s budget of $40 million in order to limit (and make transparent) the new money that an LEA could put into teacher (this term was “robustly” debated, also) compensation. The motion failed.
c. In the end, the Board increased its proposed WPU increase to 3.5% and decreased the amount that the Board had earlier designated to fund a Board-driven technology initiative.
d. The Board also discussed proposed line-item funding of lesser amounts: Britney Cummins favored restoring funding for OEK; Board member Joel Wright asked for Board support for Board member travel to conferences and conference/seminar costs. Board member Wright also asked if funding to increase Board member salaries should be included in the Board-proposed budget.
8. The Board voted to propose changes to the 2016 Legislature for the charter school statutes in the Utah Code. The Board voted to propose having the Board select State Charter Board members rather than the Governor. The Board changed an initial recommendation to have the Board select the chair of the Charter Board—back to allowing the Charter Board to elect its own chair. The Board also voted to recommend taking control of the charter school application process. The Board members reviewed and approved a 2-page recommendation resolution—not yet available for public review.
9. The Board voted to revise the current Coalition of Minority Advisory Committee (CMAC). Again, the Board members reviewed a 2-page resolution that is not yet available to the public. There was Board sentiment to create a committee with a smaller number of members than the current CMAC—it seemed that the final recommendation was for a 15-member committee.
10. The Board went into executive session mid-afternoon to discuss “reasonably imminent litigation” and “sale/purchase of property.”
December 7, 2015
The following is a summary of the State Board of Education Meeting, held Thursday night and Friday, December 3 and 4, 2015.
Board elections: Yes, the same Board leadership was re-elected. But Jennifer Johnson challenged Dave Crandall for Board chair and the vote was 9-6. Four Board members ran for the 2 vice-chair positions: Linda Hansen, Laura Belnap, Dave Thomas and Jennifer Johnson. The same vice chairs prevailed (Dave Thomas—1st vice chair and Jennifer Johnson—2d vice chair), but the votes were close, demonstrating either significant interest in leading the Board and/or dissatisfaction with current Board leadership. 1st Vice Chair Dave Thomas, in his short election statement, acknowledged that the Board “has received criticism for lessening its service role.” But he stated that there is now “an appropriate balance” as the Board now has increased auditing and oversight.
Board budget recommendations prior to the 2016 Legislative session: This was a lengthy discussion with above and below-the-line charts that changed with Board member motions (copies of the charts were not provided to the audience). The following discussion points were interesting:
• The Board had previously removed $10 for OEK from the Board’s recommended budget
• The Board proposed a 1% increase to the WPU request. Board member Dave Thomas noted that he had been informed by the districts that he represents that a 1% increase would not cover increased health care costs. He had heard that districts needed a 1and ½ to a 2% increase to the WPU to cover increases in health care costs.
• Board members discussed, with no final answer, whether voted and board levies could be used for part of the health care increases.
• The Board unanimously voted to add $10 for the American Indian and Alaskan Native Act, presumably to increase services to these student populations.
• Board member Joel Wright stated emphatically during the discussion that “public education needs more funding!”
• Board member Spencer Stokes moved and the Board supported unanimously a one-time request of $3.6 million that would be non-lapsing over a 3 year period for “Strategy for Change;” the purpose of these funds was not explained to the audience.
• Board member Laura Belnap made a motion to increase the teacher supply money request by $1 million. She noted that this money is referred to by teachers as “the Governor’s money.” Other Board members said this reference should be changed. The funds should be referred to as coming from the State Board.
• Board member Stan Lockhart said that before he could vote for this increase, he wanted to see a cost/benefit analysis of how these funds improved student achievement. Superintendent Smith said that, after this Legislative session, he would take “the laboring oar” in developing such an analysis for the Board.
• The Board voted to increase the Board’s recommendation for teacher supply funds.
• The Board included several requests for funds for internal USOE positions, including a purchasing agent; a contract attorney to review Board contracts, RFPs and compliance; and a full-time rulewriting employee.
Board Rules: One rule was discussed conceptually and two additional important and interesting rules were tabled—without a specific future review date:
• R277-494 Charter and Online Student Participation in Extracurricular or Co-Curricular Activities and R277-505 Administrative License Areas of Concentration and Programs.
• R277-505 proposed significant changes to requirements and criteria for what have traditionally been called “supervisory/administrative areas of concentration.”
o Also, the rule would control which administrative/supervisory programs would receive Board approval and allows for a pilot administrative program, if approved jointly by the State Superintendent and an LEA.
o The Board tabled the rule, stating that it wants to discuss the proposed rule with Representative Kim Coleman who sponsored a bill in the 2015 Legislative session on the same topic that also proposed significant changes to school administrative credentials. The bill passed the Legislature, but was vetoed by the Governor.
o Board member Stokes said that the Board has asked West Ed (an education consulting association to which the Utah State Board of Education belongs) to evaluate available competency-based assessments for administrative endorsements.
• The Board Finance Committee discussed the concept for a rule that will allow (and require?) the USOE to split enrollment and funding for a student who is enrolled in 2 public schools (2 charter schools, 2 traditional schools, one of each or home school and a public school). The Board committee discussed the concept and directed the USOE staff to develop and present a rule. This could have a financial impact on LEAs that are currently allowing students to split their enrollment. It is unclear if those LEAs currently receive part of a WPU for a partially enrolled student or if both participating LEAs receive the full WPU because the USOE school accounting system may need additional programming or refinement. And funding?
The Board discussed recommendations from a Legislative-initiated charter school funding task force. The Board did not accept most of the recommendations, despite extensive meetings and discussion by task force members. The Board presented a comprehensive chart together with the discussion; the chart was not available to the Board audience, but was informative and will likely be available when Board meeting minutes are available.
October 12, 2015
The following is a summary of the State Board of Education Meeting, held Thursday night and Friday, October 8 and 9, 2015.
R277-207 UPPAC Disciplinary Guidelines
• The Board changed the language in the Rule from “guidelines” to “rebuttable presumptions.” “Presumption” has a more specific legal connotation and more strongly requires UPPAC and the Board to use the standards set in the Rule, than does the term “guidelines.”
• One significant change: the Rule now has a “rebuttable presumption” for license revocation for a teacher who has 3 convictions “of any combination of drug, alcohol, violence or sexual offenses “ within a 3-year period.
• Another change, if a teacher intentionally provides alcohol or drugs to a minor, there will be a presumed revocation of the teacher’s license. Previously, there would have been a 1-3 year suspension of the teacher’s license.
• A teacher’s conviction (including pleas of abeyance) of any felony results in a presumption of revocation of the teacher’s license. Previously, the nature of the underlying felony was a deciding factor in license discipline.
Also, the Board directed the Law and Licensing Committee of the Board to review all UPPAC/Professional Practices Rules, beginning immediately. The Committee said it will solicit information about the rules from stakeholder groups.
R277-404. Requirements for Assessments of Student Achievement
The Board made 2 significant changes to the proposed amended Rule:
1. Reinstated the descriptive language of the State-required assessment for which most districts use “Dibels:” one benchmark reading assessment approved by the Board for students in grades 1 through 3 and administered to students at the beginning, midpoint and end of year;
2. Changed the language from the proposed Rule that allowed parents to exempt their children from “state required” tests to “state administered” tests. The 2015 Section of the Utah Code that allows for this exemption uses different language: “At the request of a student’s parent or guardian, an LEA shall excuse a student from taking an assessment that: (iii) requires the use of:
(A) a state assessment system; or
(B) software that is provided or paid for by the state.” [§53A-15-1403(9)]
“State-administered” seems to be broader language and more consistent with the law
R277-705. Secondary School Completion and Diplomas
• The Board passed the Rule as proposed and posted previously—stylistic changes
R277-118 LEA Post-employment Benefits Plan
• The Board repealed the Rule on 3rd and final reading
R277-726 Statewide Online Education Program
• The Board did not review the Rule as originally scheduled. There is still no draft of the Rule published on the Board’s web page.
R277-497 School Grading System
• The Board did not discuss a formula for calculating a growth target for a student, as originally scheduled. The only version of this Rule is what we have linked to below.
Other items of interest:
• The Board postponed until November a decision on the transfer approved by the State Charter Board of Liberty Academy to American Preparatory Academy. Board attorneys and auditors cited unresolved concerns about adequate notice to the Board from the State Charter Board of the State Charter Board proposal, concerns about Liberty’s student scores, and concerns about carefully following procedures outlined in 53A-1a-509.5 (2015, Sen. Henderson, SB 227)
• Board 2nd Vice-Chair Jennifer Johnson made a motion to disband the Electronic High School. The motion was not voted on and USOE staff was directed to bring the issue back to the Board at a later time.
• During the Board’s discussion of its funding priorities for the 2016 Legislative session, Board members expressed concerns that the State Board sets ITS priorities and then various education-related groups of organizations request funding directly from the Education Appropriations Committee, irrespective of the Board’s priorities. One Board member called these ad hoc presentations and requests “the dance of the beggars.” Board member Stokes proposed a solution. The Board directed USOE staff to create a form that would be readily available to all education-related entities by which organizations or individuals could request funding or to be a priority for the State Board of Education. The Board members would then have an orderly discussion of these written requests prior to the Legislative session.
October 7, 2015
The State Board will discuss the following rules Thursday night in respective committees. Below is a summary of the proposed changes and new provisions in the rules. Check back next week for a summary of what the Board discussed.
The amendments to R277-705 Secondary School Completion and Diplomas are primarily wording changes.
o LEAs must accept student-earned credits from all schools accredited by an accrediting entity adopted by the Board” instead of “Northwest” or AdvancED.
o The language requiring LEAs to offer services to children of active military is deleted, but is found in the law in Section 53A-1-1001.
o The rule directs LEAs to provide various methods for a student to earn credit from non-accredited sources, course work, or education providers.
o The rule’s definition of “transcript” continues to leave discretion to the LEAs.
R277-207 UPPAC Disciplinary Guidelines is a new rule.
o The rule, as currently written, derives—for the most part–from the recommendations, decisions of UPPAC and data gathered by UPPAC staff over the past 20 years.
o In the past, UPPAC used the more legal term, presumptions, for the information that guided UPPAC decisions and recommendations to the Board.
o The proposed rule was amended last month to change the terms “presumptions” to “guidelines.”
o The introduction to the rule suggests that Board members may direct USOE staff to change the guidelines.
o Why does this matter to LEAs? In the past, LEAs could gauge a possible UPPAC recommendation about licensing discipline on past recommendations. Depending upon the direction of the Board, UPPAC and Board licensing actions could change, possibly making an educator who violated professional standards more unlikely to return to public education employment.
o The Board committee/Board could just discuss and give direction to USOE staff or could take action on the rule.
R277-404 Requirements for Assessments of Student Achievement makes several wording changes (such as USOE to “Superintendent” throughout) and deletes definitions that are now found in a Board Rule that applies to all Board Rules. There are a few additional changes to note:
o The rule no longer lists required state assessments, but rather, refers to the Utah Code (Sec. 53A-15-1403(9)(a))
o Required student assessments now includes “one benchmark reading assessment,” deleting the language “approved by the Board” and deleting the required timing for such an assessment.
o The rule states explicitly that an LEA may not use a student’s score on a “state administered assessment” to determine a student’s grade or to determine a student’s advancement to another grade.
o The rule allows LEAs to use their own forms to exempt students from assessments.
o The rule explicitly states that an LEA may request a parent to meet with school people before exempting their students from assessments, but a school cannot require such a meeting.
–An LEA-provided form must include all state-required information.
–An LEA may verify with the parents an exemption form.
o The rule addresses the question of whether the parent can exempt her child from all required state assessments, including the newly-required basic civics test: a parent can exempt a child from taking the test, but a student cannot graduate without completing the state requirements for graduation—which include passing the basic civics test.
R277-726 Statewide Online Education Program (no link) is scheduled for amendments—which will affect both an LEA’s interaction with the SEOP and the funds that are diverted from an LEA to the SEOP for students’ courses.
o Proposed amendments were not posted online as of Wednesday morning.
R277-497 School Grading System The Standards and Assessment Committee and the Board will give direction to the Superintendent by providing a formula for calculating a growth target for a student.
October 2, 2015
In an intense discussion today, the State Charter Board (“SCB”) heard American Preparatory Academy’s (“APA”) request to have the SCB condemn property on the school’s behalf through eminent domain. The property at issue has already been contested in litigation, but the judge ruled that APA (and individual charter schools) do not have eminent domain authority. In today’s meeting the same attorneys who represented APA and the land-owner in court made their arguments to the SCB. The SCB ultimately delayed its decision so it can research the issue further, including researching whether the SCB, as a statutory advisory body to the State Board of Education has the authority to condemn land.
September 28, 2015
The State Board of Education made some final revisions and decisions about important rules at the September Board meeting. The following, though not a comprehensive list and summary of ALL changes, are changes to note:
R277-533 Educator Evaluation—the Board Committee and the full Board made final changes to this rule. Also, the final version of the Rule does not answer a couple of important questions, leaving those interpretations and decisions to school districts as policy decisions.
The Rule still does NOT:
1. Provide a definition for “certified rater” in the Rule’s definition section. However, the final rule provides that “certified raters” are designated by school districts.
2. Provide a timeline for educator evaluations in the current (2015-16) school year. The law is clear that a district’s “evaluation system must be fully implemented in the 2015-16 school year and provides in 53A-8a-601(2) that in the 2016-2017 school year, there will be compensation consequences for an educator whose evaluation . . . “ is at the second lowest level of an evaluation instrument” with instruments that have 4 evaluation levels. But if the consequences for the 2016 school year depend on the 2015-2016 evaluations is left unaddressed.
The final rule DOES:
1. Provide for the USOE PEER Committee to “review and evaluate,” rather than “approve,” a district’s evaluation system.
2. Allow for an appeal or review to the employer by an educator who is “not satisfied with a summative evaluation.”
3. Provide that a certified rater makes written “findings” following a review or appeal of a dissatisfied educator’s evaluation to the district superintendent for final action.
R277-100 Rulemaking Policy—the Board passed the Rule on third reading.
1. The Board voted on a more streamlined “rulemaking policy” on final reading.
2. The State Superintendent will screen initial petitions sent to the Board regarding rulemaking.
3. The Superintendent reviews the petition and can make recommendations, but does not seem to have the authority to deny a petition to the Board
4. The Board will no longer formally review USOE policy manuals, though LEAs and Board members will have electronic access to policy manuals prior to Board adoption.
5. The Board can appoint a hearing officer for hearings on rulemaking issues and will follow hearing procedures of Utah Code §63G-3-302 and the Office of Administrative Rule’s procedural rule—except as provided in the Rule. A person requesting a hearing is not provided that information in this Board Rule; the person would have to review the procedures outlined in the Code and in R15-1-5(2).
6. The Hearing Officer, if appointed by the Board, rules on “a question of relevance and redundancy.”
7. Whether a Hearing Officer or the Board conducts a hearing, written findings, including the Board’s reasoning and decision must be issued before the Rule becomes effective.
R277-477 Distribution of School Trust LAND Funds—the Board considered the Rule and passed it on first and second reading, with significant changes from the previous version. The Rule will be read again on the Board’s consent calendar in October. Important provisions include:
1. The Rule was revised in the Board meeting to direct schools to work in collaboration with the approving entity (e.g. school district) to use School LAND Trust Program funds in “data-driven and evidence-based ways to improve educational outcomes.”
2. The deletion of further explanation of “direct impact on the instruction of students” and maintains the deletion of the list of “eligible” and “ineligible” uses for Trust LAND funds.
3. The Rule maintains the provision that precludes a school district or local school board from requiring a council or school to use Trust LAND funds for a specific district/board directed use.
4. The School LAND Trust Section at the USOE will not “approve” school plans, but, after receiving them from the approving entity (e.g. school district), the Section will review for compliance.
5. Finally, the USOE employee/School Trust LAND Director will report plans that are out of compliance with the law—following discussion and negation with the approving entity—to the State Board Audit Committee.
R277-438 Dual Enrollment—Board passed the amended Rule on second reading; presumably it will be on the Board’s October consent calendar for final reading. There were a couple of changes, primarily clarifying dual enrollment procedures for students with disabilities:
1. The public school that enrolls a student with disabilities is responsible for the preparation of an IEP for a student with disabilities. Note: this would usually be the student’s “resident school” (as defined in the rule), but could also be a charter school or a non-resident school that has the discretion to accept students under dual enrollment.
2. The IEP of a student with disabilities would control how many courses and the time period that a student with disabilities could participate in dual enrollment.
3. The Rule on second reading maintains the provision that permits, but does not require, both charter schools and schools where the student does not reside, to accept students for dual enrollment.
4. Finally, language at the very end of the proposed Rule is deleted, that would have required LEAs to give students credits toward graduation that students received from similarly accredited private schools and that directed LEAs to have a process to evaluate home schooled and non-accredited private school student work for graduation credit.
September 17, 2015 (Happy Constitution Day!)
R277-533 Educator Evaluation. The State Board committee and Board will read R277-533 on 2nd and 3rd reading. Below are some noteworthy issues to pay attention to:
1. The Rule has no express definition (in the definition section) for “certified rater.” These people have weighty roles in this process—they both evaluate teachers and investigate appeals from evaluations that are not satisfactory to educators. If districts “designate” them, districts should have a very clear definition of required criteria.
2. The Rule does not make clear if the law’s pay-for-performance provisions which are set to begin in 2016-2017 school year will be based on educator evaluations in the 2015-16 school year or if the actual consequences do not begin until 2017-2018 school year, based on 2016-2017 evaluations. Without clear guidance in rule or law, districts should also consider this a policy matter.
3. The Rule allows reviews or appeals of educator evaluations for any educator “not satisfied with a summative evaluation.” This includes dissatisfaction with both the procedures and the substance of the evaluation.
4. The Rule requires a district to allow an educator response to required stakeholder input and the district must “consider” the educator’s response in the final evaluation. Districts will need to determine what it means to “consider” educator responses and how much weight to give those responses in the final evaluation.
5. The Rule requires districts to report only the “number and percent” of educators in the four effectiveness categories—individual educator data will remain protected.
R277-100 Rulemaking Policy, Version 1 and Version 2. The State Board will consider two versions of the Rule and presumably choose one. The Rule will be read on 1st and 2nd reading which means that the Rule will be revisited at least once more on the consent calendar.
1. Version 1 provides more of the state law provisions that require an agency to outline its procedures, probably so that the reader will have context for the Board’s specific procedures. Version 2 is more abbreviated and more often refers a person to the law to figure out for himself how the law and the rule interact. For instance, Version 1 offers the reader 5 definitions; Version 2 provides 2 definitions. Version 1 also shows Board members, in greater detail, what words are removed from the Rule; Version 2 deletes full lines rather than individual words.
Both Rule versions streamline the procedures for the Board to hold hearings about Rules upon request. Version 1 has a more active role for the Superintendent in the process.
One question: does either Rule version, standing on its own, give a lay person interested in State Board of Education issues, enough information to petition the Board for a hearing?
R277-477 Distribution of State School LAND Trust Funds (short title). The State Board is reading this—again—on first and second reading. There are significant changes:
1. The list of “eligible” and “ineligible” school LAND uses by community councils and charter school parent councils has been deleted. The lists are replaced with more general directives about using funds in data-driven and creative ways to improve educational outcomes and specifying that School LAND Trust Program expenditures are “required to have a direct
impact on the instruction of students in the particular school’s areas of most critical academic need.”
2. The new rule still has specific directives about eligible and ineligible uses—but they are abbreviated and more general. See specifically lines 220-251 in the Rule proposed in the September 17-18 agenda for guidance. One of these directives is that the LEA cannot prescribe a use or a set of uses for the funds with which community councils must comply.
3. The Rule has a new section about the LEA (“approving entity”) negotiating with community councils to settle on plans that satisfy both LEAs and individual community councils. Also, it includes a new specific section requiring approval of all plans by the USOE School LAND Trust Section.
4. One very important eligible use: LEAs can use School LAND trust funds “to implement students’ IEPs.” This language broadens former language approving use for specialized schools.
R277-438 Dual Enrollment. The State Board of Education committee and State Board is reading this Rule on 1st and Second reading. There are two important changes to be noted:
1. Traditional, non-charter schools are now defined as “resident schools.” These schools must participate in dual enrollment. Charter schools are specifically exempt from the definition of resident schools. (line 77) Line 98 states provides that “public schools that are not the student’s resident school” may dually enroll a student at the school’s discretion. This includes charter schools, online schools, and districts that are not the student’s resident district.
2. Schools are now specifically directed to develop a process for a student “to receive credit toward graduation at the LEA for credit or work done in a home school or non-accredited private school.”