(1) The State Board of Education shall comply with the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), 20 U.S.C. ss. 6301 et seq., its implementing regulations, and the ESEA flexibility waiver approved for Florida by the United States Secretary of Education. The state board may adopt rules to maintain compliance with the ESEA and the ESEA flexibility waiver.
(2)(a) Pursuant to subsection (1) and ss. 1008.34, 1008.345, and 1008.385, the State Board of Education shall hold all school districts and public schools accountable for student performance. The state board is responsible for a state system of school improvement and education accountability that assesses student performance by school, identifies schools that are not meeting accountability standards, and institutes appropriate measures for enforcing improvement.
(b) The state system of school improvement and education accountability must provide for uniform accountability standards, provide assistance of escalating intensity to schools not meeting accountability standards, direct support to schools in order to improve and sustain performance, focus on the performance of student subgroups, and enhance student performance.
(c) School districts must be held accountable for improving the academic performance of all students and for identifying and improving schools that fail to meet accountability standards.
(3)(a) The academic performance of all students has a significant effect on the state school system. Pursuant to Art. IX of the State Constitution, which prescribes the duty of the State Board of Education to supervise Florida’s public school system, the state board shall equitably enforce the accountability requirements of the state school system and may impose state requirements on school districts in order to improve the academic performance of all districts, schools, and students based upon the provisions of the Florida K-20 Education Code, chapters 1000-1013; the federal ESEA and its implementing regulations; and the ESEA flexibility waiver approved for Florida by the United States Secretary of Education.
(b) The Department of Education shall annually identify each public school in need of intervention and support to improve student academic performance. All schools earning a grade of “D” or “F” pursuant to s. 1008.34 are schools in need of intervention and support. (c) The state board shall adopt by rule a differentiated matrix of intervention and support strategies for assisting traditional public schools identified under this section and rules for implementing s. 1002.33(9)(n), relating to charter schools. The intervention and support strategies must address student performance and may include improvement planning; leadership quality improvement; educator quality improvement; professional development; curriculum review, pacing, and alignment across grade levels to improve background knowledge in social studies, science, and the arts; and the use of continuous improvement and monitoring plans and processes. In addition, the state board may prescribe reporting requirements to review and monitor the progress of the schools. The rule must define the intervention and support strategies for school improvement for schools earning a grade of “D” or “F” and the roles for the district and department. (4)1(a) The state board shall apply intensive intervention and support strategies tailored to the needs of schools earning two consecutive grades of “D” or a grade of “F.” In the first full school year after a school initially earns two consecutive grades of “D” or a grade of “F,” the school district must immediately implement intervention and support strategies prescribed in rule under paragraph (3)(c) and, by September 1, provide the department with the memorandum of understanding negotiated pursuant to s. 1001.42(21) and, by October 1, a district-managed turnaround plan for approval by the state board. The district-managed turnaround plan may include a proposal for the district to implement an extended school day, a summer program, or a combination of an extended school day and a summer program. Upon approval by the state board, the school district must implement the plan for the remainder of the school year and continue the plan for 1 full school year. The state board may allow a school an additional year of implementation before the school must implement a turnaround option required under paragraph (b) if it determines that the school is likely to improve to a grade of “C” or higher after the first full school year of implementation. (b) Unless an additional year of implementation is provided pursuant to paragraph (a), a school that earns three consecutive grades below a “C” must implement one of the following:
1. Reassign students to another school and monitor the progress of each reassigned student;
2. Close the school and reopen the school as one or more charter schools, each with a governing board that has a demonstrated record of effectiveness; or
3. Contract with an outside entity that has a demonstrated record of effectiveness to operate the school. An outside entity may include a district-managed charter school in which all instructional personnel are not employees of the school district, but are employees of an independent governing board composed of members who did not participate in the review or approval of the charter.
(c) Implementation of the turnaround option is no longer required if the school improves to a grade of “C” or higher.
1(d) If a school earning two consecutive grades of “D” or a grade of “F” does not improve to a grade of “C” or higher after 2 school years of implementing the turnaround option selected by the school district under paragraph (b), the school district must implement another turnaround option. Implementation of the turnaround option must begin the school year following the implementation period of the existing turnaround option, unless the state board determines that the school is likely to improve to a grade of “C” or higher if additional time is provided to implement the existing turnaround option. (5) The state board shall adopt rules pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 to administer this section. The rules shall include timelines for submission of implementation plans, approval criteria for implementation plans, and timelines for implementing intervention and support strategies. The state board shall consult with education stakeholders in developing the rules. 1Note.—Section 24, ch. 2019-23, provides that:
“(1) The Department of Revenue is authorized, and all conditions are deemed to be met, to adopt emergency rules pursuant to s. 120.54(4), Florida Statutes, for the purpose of administering the provisions of this act relating to the Hope Scholarship Program and Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program.
“(2) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, emergency rules adopted pursuant to subsection (1) are effective for 6 months after adoption and may be renewed during the pendency of procedures to adopt permanent rules addressing the subject of the emergency rules.
“(3) This section shall take effect upon this act becoming a law and shall expire January 1, 2022.”