Florida Senate - 2013                 (Corrected Copy)    SB 862
       By Senator Stargel
       15-00412A-13                                           2013862__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to parent empowerment in education;
    3         amending s. 1001.10, F.S.; conforming a cross
    4         reference; amending s. 1002.20, F.S.; providing that
    5         parents who have a student in a public school that is
    6         implementing a turnaround option may petition to have
    7         a particular turnaround option implemented; requiring
    8         the school district to give parents of public school
    9         students, upon request, a performance evaluation for
   10         each classroom teacher assigned to their child;
   11         requiring the school district to notify parents of a
   12         public school student being taught by an out-of-field
   13         teacher or by a teacher with an unsatisfactory
   14         performance rating; specifying requirements for the
   15         notice; amending s. 1002.32, F.S.; conforming a cross
   16         reference; amending s. 1002.33, F.S.; requiring a
   17         charter school to comply with certain procedures for
   18         the assignment of teachers; creating s. 1003.07, F.S.;
   19         creating the Parent Empowerment Act; specifying what
   20         constitutes an eligible student and a parental vote;
   21         requiring that a school district send a written notice
   22         to parents of public school students regarding the
   23         parents’ options to petition the school for a
   24         particular turnaround option; requiring the notice to
   25         include certain information; authorizing up to one
   26         parental vote per eligible student; establishing the
   27         process to solicit signatures for a petition;
   28         prohibiting a person from being paid for signatures;
   29         prohibiting a for-profit corporation, business, or
   30         entity from soliciting signatures or paying a person
   31         to solicit signatures; establishing criteria to verify
   32         the signatures on a petition; requiring the State
   33         Board of Education to adopt rules for filing a
   34         petition; specifying that a petition is valid if it is
   35         signed and dated by a majority of the parents of
   36         eligible students and those signatures are verified;
   37         requiring the school district to consider the
   38         turnaround option on the valid petition with the most
   39         signatures at a publicly noticed school board meeting;
   40         requiring the school district to submit an
   41         implementation plan to the state board; amending s.
   42         1008.33, F.S.; authorizing a parent to petition the
   43         school district to implement a turnaround option
   44         selected by the parent; amending s. 1012.2315, F.S.;
   45         providing for assistance to teachers teaching out-of
   46         field; requiring the school district to notify parents
   47         and inform them of their options if a student is being
   48         taught by an out-of-field teacher; requiring the
   49         school district to give to a parent a teacher’s
   50         performance evaluation upon request; providing that a
   51         student may not be assigned to an unsatisfactory
   52         teacher in a single subject for two consecutive school
   53         years; repealing s. 1012.42, F.S., relating to
   54         teachers who are teaching out-of-field; providing an
   55         effective date.
   57  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   59         Section 1. Subsection (3) of section 1001.10, Florida
   60  Statutes, is amended to read:
   61         1001.10 Commissioner of Education; general powers and
   62  duties.—
   63         (3) To facilitate innovative practices and to allow local
   64  selection of educational methods, the State Board of Education
   65  may authorize the commissioner to waive, upon the request of a
   66  district school board, rules of the State Board of Education
   67  relating rules that relate to district school instruction and
   68  school operations, except those rules pertaining to civil
   69  rights, and student health, safety, and welfare. The
   70  commissioner of Education is not authorized to grant waivers for
   71  any provisions in rule pertaining to the allocation and
   72  appropriation of state and local funds for public education; the
   73  election, compensation, and organization of school board members
   74  and superintendents; graduation and state accountability
   75  standards; financial reporting requirements; reporting of out
   76  of-field teaching assignments under s. 1012.2315 s. 1012.42;
   77  public meetings; public records; or due process hearings
   78  governed by chapter 120. No later than January 1 of each year,
   79  the commissioner shall report to the Legislature and the State
   80  Board of Education all approved waiver requests in the preceding
   81  year.
   82         Section 2. Paragraph (d) is added to subsection (21) of
   83  section 1002.20, Florida Statutes, and subsections (25) and (26)
   84  are added to that section, to read:
   85         1002.20 K-12 student and parent rights.—Parents of public
   86  school students must receive accurate and timely information
   87  regarding their child’s academic progress and must be informed
   88  of ways they can help their child to succeed in school. K-12
   89  students and their parents are afforded numerous statutory
   90  rights including, but not limited to, the following:
   91         (21) PARENTAL INPUT AND MEETINGS.—
   92         (d) Parent empowerment.—Parents of students who are
   93  assigned to a public school that is required to implement a
   94  turnaround option pursuant to s. 1008.33 may submit a petition
   95  to the school district requesting implementation of a turnaround
   96  option pursuant to s. 1003.07.
   97         (25) PERSONNEL EVALUATION REPORTS.—Upon request by the
   98  parent of a public school student, the school district shall
   99  provide the parent with a performance evaluation for each
  100  classroom teacher assigned to his or her child.
  101         (26) ASSIGNMENT TO TEACHERS.—
  102         (a) Out-of-field classroom teachers.—Each school district
  103  shall annually notify the parent of a public school student who
  104  is assigned to a classroom teacher teaching out-of-field. The
  105  notice must inform the parent that virtual instruction from a
  106  certified in-field teacher having an annual performance
  107  evaluation rating of “effective” or “highly effective” is
  108  available pursuant to s. 1012.2315(5).
  109         (b) Underperforming classroom teachers.—Each school
  110  district shall annually notify the parent of a public school
  111  student assigned to a classroom teacher or school administrator
  112  who, under s. 1012.34, has two consecutive annual performance
  113  evaluation ratings of unsatisfactory, two annual performance
  114  evaluation ratings of unsatisfactory within a 3-year period,
  115  or three consecutive annual performance evaluation ratings of
  116  needs improvement or a combination of needs improvement and
  117  unsatisfactory. The notice must inform the parent that virtual
  118  instruction from a teacher who has an annual performance
  119  evaluation rating of “effective” or “highly effective” is
  120  available pursuant to s. 1012.2315(7).
  121         Section 3. Paragraph (c) of subsection (7) of section
  122  1002.32, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
  123         1002.32 Developmental research (laboratory) schools.—
  124         (7) PERSONNEL.—
  125         (c) Lab school faculty members shall meet the certification
  126  requirements of s. 1012.32 ss. 1012.32 and 1012.42.
  127         Section 4. Paragraph (b) of subsection (16) of section
  128  1002.33, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
  129         1002.33 Charter schools.—
  130         (16) EXEMPTION FROM STATUTES.—
  131         (b) Additionally, a charter school shall comply be in
  132  compliance with the following statutes:
  133         1. Section 286.011, relating to public meetings and
  134  records, public inspection, and criminal and civil penalties.
  135         2. Chapter 119, relating to public records.
  136         3. Section 1003.03, relating to the maximum class size,
  137  except that the calculation for compliance pursuant to s.
  138  1003.03 must shall be the average at the school level.
  139         4. Section 1012.22(1)(c), relating to compensation and
  140  salary schedules.
  141         5. Section 1012.33(5), relating to workforce reductions.
  142         6. Section 1012.335, relating to contracts with
  143  instructional personnel hired on or after July 1, 2011.
  144         7. Section 1012.34, relating to the substantive
  145  requirements for performance evaluations for instructional
  146  personnel and school administrators.
  147         8. Section 1012.2315(5) and (7), relating to the assignment
  148  of teachers and notification to parents.
  149         Section 5. Section 1003.07, Florida Statutes, is created to
  150  read:
  151         1003.07Parent empowerment.—
  152         (1) This section may be cited as the “Parent Empowerment
  153  Act.”
  154         (2) As used in this section, the term:
  155         (a) “Eligible student” means a student enrolled in a school
  156  in which a turnaround option will be implemented or a student
  157  who, under the school district’s enrollment policy, is scheduled
  158  for assignment to that school the following school year. A
  159  student who is graduating or being promoted out of a school that
  160  is eligible for a turnaround option and who will not be enrolled
  161  in that school the following school year is not an eligible
  162  student.
  163         (b) “Parental vote” means the signature of one parent of an
  164  eligible student.
  165         1. If the other parent objects in writing to the parental
  166  vote before the date the petition is scheduled to be submitted,
  167  and if the parents have equal parental rights, the parental vote
  168  counts for one-half of a vote.
  169         2. If one parent has sole parental responsibility or holds
  170  the right to make educational decisions for the student pursuant
  171  to s. 61.13, only that parent can vote regarding the eligible
  172  student.
  173         (3) Each school district shall notify, in writing, the
  174  parents of eligible students and the school advisory council
  175  when a public school has been unable to improve performance and
  176  is required to implement a turnaround option pursuant to s.
  177  1008.33. The written notice must inform parents that, before the
  178  district school board selects a turnaround option, parents may
  179  petition for implementation of a particular turnaround option by
  180  the school the following school year. The notice must be
  181  provided to parents within 30 calendar days after the school
  182  district receives notice from the department that the school is
  183  required to implement a turnaround option. The notice must
  184  include:
  185         (a) A description of each turnaround option available for
  186  selection under s. 1008.33;
  187         (b) A description of the process for implementing a
  188  turnaround option, including the date by which the school
  189  district must submit its implementation plan to the State Board
  190  of Education;
  191         (c) The date and location for submission of the petition;
  192         (d) The date and location of the publicly noticed district
  193  school board meeting required in this section at which the
  194  school board will consider the available turnaround options; and
  195         (e) The contact information of the district school board.
  196         (4) A person who solicits signatures may not offer monetary
  197  compensation, a promise of employment, or any other reward to a
  198  parent for signing a petition. A person who solicits signatures
  199  may not be paid per signature and, if asked, must disclose the
  200  organization he or she represents. A for-profit corporation,
  201  business, or entity is prohibited from gathering signatures or
  202  paying others to solicit signatures.
  203         (5) The State Board of Education shall adopt rules to
  204  establish a petition format, the petition submission process,
  205  standards for verifying signatures, and timeframes for the
  206  verification and consideration of a petition at a publicly
  207  noticed meeting. Petition forms must be easily accessible to
  208  parents. Each petition form must clearly identify only one
  209  turnaround option on the front page of the petition and on each
  210  page thereafter. The school district shall provide clear
  211  instructions and a sample petition form for each turnaround
  212  option available for selection under s. 1008.33.
  213         (6) The petition process must provide that:
  214         (a) Parents of eligible students have at least 30 days
  215  after initial notification to gather petition signatures.
  216         (b) The school district shall verify signatures no more
  217  than 30 days after the date the petition is submitted.
  218         (c) The district school board may not meet sooner than 30
  219  days after the petition is submitted.
  220         (d) A submitted petition may list only one turnaround
  221  option identified in s. 1008.33 which is not currently being
  222  implemented at the school. A parent may sign more than one
  223  petition for a turnaround option.
  224         (e) A parent signature constitutes a certification that the
  225  parent has a present intention to enroll his or her child, who
  226  must be identified on the petition, if the turnaround option
  227  identified on the petition is selected. A school district may
  228  not reject a parent’s signature on a petition on the basis that
  229  the parent signed the petition before the initial notice.
  230         (f) The school district shall verify at least a majority of
  231  the signatures on the petition using existing student enrollment
  232  documentation or other records containing parent signatures. A
  233  school district may not reject a parent’s signature on a
  234  petition based on a lack of conformity to signatures in school
  235  records if the parent’s identity and signature can be easily
  236  validated with a photographic identification or a notarized
  237  signature verifying the identity of the signer, or by the
  238  personal knowledge of a school employee. The school district is
  239  not required to verify notarized signatures, and signatures
  240  verified outside an established verification period are valid.
  241         (g) For a petition to be valid, it must bear the dated
  242  signatures of a majority of the parents of eligible students.
  243  For purposes of this section, a majority is more than one-half
  244  of the parents who are eligible to sign the petition. Only one
  245  parental vote per eligible student may be counted with respect
  246  to each petition.
  247         (h) If valid petitions for more than one turnaround option
  248  are submitted, the petition having the most signatures is the
  249  official turnaround option selected by parents.
  250         (7) The turnaround option selected by parents must be
  251  considered for implementation by the school district at a
  252  publicly noticed district school board meeting. The district
  253  school board may adopt the turnaround option selected by parents
  254  or a different turnaround option selected by the district school
  255  board. Pursuant to s. 1008.33, an implementation plan for the
  256  adopted turnaround option must be submitted to the state board.
  257         (a) If the district school board adopts a turnaround option
  258  that is different from the turnaround option selected by
  259  parents, it shall identify with its submission the turnaround
  260  option selected by parents.
  261         (b) If the state board determines that the turnaround
  262  option selected by parents is more likely to improve the
  263  academic performance of students at the school, the district
  264  school board shall submit to the state board an implementation
  265  plan for the turnaround option selected by parents.
  266         Section 6. Subsection (4) of section 1008.33, Florida
  267  Statutes, is amended to read:
  268         1008.33 Authority to enforce public school improvement.—
  269         (4)(a) The state board shall apply the most intense
  270  intervention and support strategies to schools earning a grade
  271  of “F.” In the first full school year after a school initially
  272  earns a grade of “F,” the school district must implement
  273  intervention and support strategies prescribed in rule under
  274  paragraph (3)(c), select a turnaround option from those provided
  275  in subparagraphs (b)1.-5., and submit a plan for implementing
  276  the turnaround option to the department for approval by the
  277  state board. Upon approval by the state board, the turnaround
  278  option must be implemented in the following school year.
  279         (b) Except as provided in subsection (5), the turnaround
  280  options available to a school district to address a school that
  281  earns a grade of “F” are:
  282         1. Convert the school to a district-managed turnaround
  283  school;
  284         2. Reassign students to another school and monitor the
  285  progress of each reassigned student;
  286         3. Close the school and reopen the school as one or more
  287  charter schools, each with a governing board that has a
  288  demonstrated record of effectiveness;
  289         4. Contract with an outside entity that has a demonstrated
  290  record of effectiveness to operate the school; or
  291         5. Implement a hybrid of turnaround options set forth in
  292  subparagraphs 1.-4. or other turnaround models that have a
  293  demonstrated record of effectiveness.
  294         (c) Parents of students who are assigned to a public school
  295  that is required by the State Board of Education to implement a
  296  turnaround option may petition the school district to implement
  297  one of the turnaround options in paragraph (b) selected by the
  298  parents pursuant to s. 1003.07.
  299         (d)(c) Except for schools required to implement a
  300  turnaround option pursuant to subsection (5), a school earning a
  301  grade of “F” shall have a planning year followed by 2 full
  302  school years to implement the initial turnaround option selected
  303  by the school district and approved by the state board.
  304  Implementation of the turnaround option is no longer required if
  305  the school improves by at least one letter grade.
  306         (e)(d) A school earning a grade of “F” that improves its
  307  letter grade must continue to implement strategies identified in
  308  its school improvement plan pursuant to s. 1001.42(18)(a). The
  309  department must annually review implementation of the school
  310  improvement plan for 3 years to monitor the school’s continued
  311  improvement.
  312         (f)(e) If a school earning a grade of “F” does not improve
  313  by at least one letter grade after 2 full school years of
  314  implementing the turnaround option selected by the school
  315  district under paragraph (b), the school district must select a
  316  different option and submit another implementation plan to the
  317  department for approval by the state board. Implementation of
  318  the approved plan must begin the school year following the
  319  implementation period of the existing turnaround option, unless
  320  the state board determines that the school is likely to improve
  321  a letter grade if additional time is provided to implement the
  322  existing turnaround option.
  323         Section 7. Section 1012.2315, Florida Statutes, is amended
  324  to read:
  325         1012.2315 Assignment of teachers.—
  326         (1) LEGISLATIVE FINDINGS AND INTENT.—The Legislature finds
  327  disparities between teachers assigned to teach in a majority of
  328  schools that do not need improvement and schools that do need
  329  improvement pursuant to s. 1008.33. The disparities may be found
  330  in the assignment of temporarily certified teachers, teachers in
  331  need of improvement, and out-of-field teachers and in the
  332  performance of the students. It is the intent of the Legislature
  333  that district school boards have flexibility through the
  334  collective bargaining process to assign teachers more equitably
  335  across the schools in the district.
  336         (2) ASSIGNMENT TO SCHOOLS GRADED “D” or “F”.—School
  337  districts may not assign a higher percentage than the school
  338  district average of temporarily certified teachers, teachers in
  339  need of improvement, or out-of-field teachers to schools graded
  340  “D” or “F” pursuant to s. 1008.34. Each school district shall
  341  annually certify to the commissioner of Education that this
  342  requirement has been met. If the commissioner determines that a
  343  school district is not in compliance with this subsection, the
  344  State Board of Education must shall be notified and shall take
  345  action pursuant to s. 1008.32 in the next regularly scheduled
  346  meeting to require compliance.
  347         (3) SALARY INCENTIVES.—District school boards may are
  348  authorized to provide salary incentives to meet the requirement
  349  of subsection (2). A district school board may not sign a
  350  collective bargaining agreement that precludes the school
  351  district from providing sufficient incentives to meet this
  352  requirement.
  353         (4) COLLECTIVE BARGAINING.—Notwithstanding provisions of
  354  chapter 447 relating to district school board collective
  355  bargaining, collective bargaining provisions may not preclude a
  356  school district from providing incentives to high-quality
  357  teachers and assigning such teachers to low-performing schools.
  359         (a) Each district school board shall adopt rules for
  360  administering an assistance plan for each classroom teacher who
  361  is teaching out-of-field. The assistance plan must provide
  362  teachers who are teaching out-of-field with priority
  363  consideration in professional development activities and require
  364  such teachers to participate in a certification or staff
  365  development program that provides the competencies required for
  366  the assigned duties. A school district may reimburse a teacher
  367  who is teaching out-of-field for a certification fee. The
  368  assistance plan must also include duties of administrative
  369  personnel and other instructional personnel for assisting a
  370  teacher who is teaching out-of-field.
  371         (b) The school district shall annually notify the parent of
  372  a student who is assigned to a classroom teacher teaching a
  373  subject matter that is:
  374         1. Outside the field in which the teacher is certified;
  375         2. Outside the field that was the teacher’s minor field of
  376  study; or
  377         3. Outside the field in which the teacher has demonstrated
  378  sufficient subject area expertise, as determined by district
  379  school board policy, in the subject area to be taught.
  381  The notice must inform the parent that virtual instruction from
  382  a certified in-field teacher who has an annual performance
  383  evaluation rating of “effective” or “highly effective” under s.
  384  1012.34 is available to his or her child through the virtual
  385  instruction options specified in s. 1002.321(4).
  386         (6)(5) REPORT.—
  387         (a) By July 1, 2012, the department of Education shall
  388  annually report on its website, in a manner that is accessible
  389  to the public, the performance rating data reported by district
  390  school boards under s. 1012.34. The report must include the
  391  percentage of classroom teachers, instructional personnel, and
  392  school administrators receiving each performance rating
  393  aggregated by school district and by school.
  396         (a)(b) Notwithstanding the provisions of s.
  397  1012.31(3)(a)2., each school district shall annually notify
  398  report to the parent of a any student who is assigned to a
  399  classroom teacher or school administrator having two consecutive
  400  annual performance evaluation ratings of unsatisfactory under
  401  s. 1012.34, two annual performance evaluation ratings of
  402  unsatisfactory within a 3-year period under s. 1012.34, or three
  403  consecutive annual performance evaluation ratings of needs
  404  improvement or a combination of needs improvement and
  405  unsatisfactory under s. 1012.34. The notice must inform the
  406  parent that virtual instruction from a teacher having a
  407  performance evaluation rating of “highly effective” or
  408  “effective” under s. 1012.34 is available to his or her child
  409  through the virtual instruction options specified in s.
  410  1002.321(4).
  411         (b) Upon request by the parent of a public school student,
  412  the school district shall provide the parent with a performance
  413  evaluation for each classroom teacher assigned to his or her
  414  child, pursuant to s. 1012.31.
  415         (c) If a student is currently taught by a classroom teacher
  416  who, during that school year, receives a performance evaluation
  417  rating of “needs improvement” or “unsatisfactory” under s.
  418  1012.34, the student may not be assigned the following school
  419  year to a classroom teacher in the same subject area who
  420  received a performance evaluation rating of “needs improvement”
  421  or “unsatisfactory” in the preceding school year.
  422         Section 8. Section 1012.42, Florida Statutes, is repealed.
  423         Section 9. This act shall take effect July 1, 2013.