Florida Senate - 2012                                    SB 1162
       By Senator Simmons
       22-00820A-12                                          20121162__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to family charter academies; creating
    3         s. 1002.333, F.S.; providing legislative intent;
    4         authorizing the formation of family charter academies
    5         as part of the state’s public school system; providing
    6         guiding principles and purposes for family charter
    7         academies; providing that certain entities may submit
    8         an application to a school district or a Florida
    9         College System institution to open a family charter
   10         academy; requiring that a family charter academy
   11         applicant negotiate and enter into a contract for
   12         funding with the school district or Florida College
   13         System institution; providing requirements for
   14         applications; authorizing a district school board or a
   15         Florida College System institution to sponsor a family
   16         charter academy; providing duties of sponsors;
   17         providing that a sponsor is encouraged to set up a
   18         performance-based contract for each family charter
   19         academy; providing an effective date.
   21  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   23         Section 1. Section 1002.333, Florida Statutes, is created
   24  to read:
   25         1002.333 Family charter academies.—
   26         (1) INTENT.—The legislative intent of this section is to
   27  assist the state in greater cost efficiencies in family
   28  education and, at the same time, to increase the academic
   29  achievement outcomes in family education.
   30         (2) AUTHORIZATION.—Family charter academies shall be part
   31  of the state’s public school system. All family charter
   32  academies in the state are public schools. A family charter
   33  academy may be formed by creating a new school or by allowing an
   34  existing charter school or an existing nonprofit organization to
   35  add a family charter component.
   37         (a) A family charter academy shall be guided by the
   38  following principles:
   39         1. Meet high standards of student achievement while
   40  providing family members flexibility to choose among diverse
   41  educational opportunities within the state’s public school
   42  system.
   43         2. Promote enhanced academic success and financial
   44  efficiency by aligning responsibility with accountability.
   45         3. Provide parents with the opportunity to attend the same
   46  school as their children or to better support their children’s
   47  education.
   48         (b) A family charter academy shall fulfill the following
   49  purposes:
   50         1. Improve the efficacy of student learning and academic
   51  achievement.
   52         2. Increase learning opportunities for all students, with
   53  special emphasis on English language learners and parents.
   54         3. Encourage the use of innovative learning methods.
   55         4. Require the measurement of learning outcomes.
   56         (c) A family charter academy may fulfill the following
   57  purposes:
   58         1. Stimulate integration of learning between parents and
   59  their children and provide incentives for K-12 teachers and
   60  family education teachers to seek cooperative learning
   61  opportunities.
   62         2. Encourage a performance-based system that rewards
   63  programs for the efficient and effective teaching of adults.
   65         (a) A nonprofit organization that has expertise in literacy
   66  or family education services, an existing K-12 charter school, a
   67  municipality, or a legal entity organized under the laws of the
   68  state may submit an application to a school district or a
   69  Florida College System institution to open a family charter
   70  academy.
   71         (b) A family charter academy applicant shall negotiate and
   72  enter into a contract for funding with the school district or
   73  the Florida College System institution. School districts and
   74  Florida College System institutions are encouraged to develop
   75  performance-based contracts that assist adults and parents in
   76  setting and obtaining goals for helping their children with
   77  homework, obtaining a job, enrolling in vocational training, or
   78  earning a GED certificate.
   79         (c) A person or entity wishing to open a family charter
   80  academy shall prepare and submit an application that:
   81         1. Contains goals and objectives for improving and
   82  measuring student learning gains. The goals and objectives must
   83  indicate how much academic improvement the students are expected
   84  to show each year, how success will be evaluated, and what
   85  specific results will be attained through instruction.
   86         2. Describes the differentiated learning strategies that
   87  will be used to increase learning gains for students. The
   88  learning strategies may include online learning opportunities,
   89  the joint issuance of parent and child report cards, employment
   90  fairs, or other innovative offerings to spur learning gains.
   91         3. Contains a viable initial startup and an annual
   92  financial plan that includes the anticipated cost per student
   93  and the anticipated fund balances based on revenue projections,
   94  a spending plan based on projected revenues and expenses, and a
   95  description of controls that will safeguard finances and
   96  projected enrollment trends.
   97         4. Contains a full accounting of expected assets; a
   98  projection of expected sources and amounts of income, including
   99  income derived from projected student enrollment and community
  100  support; and an expense projection that includes a full
  101  accounting of the costs of operation and startup costs.
  102         5. Describes the facilities to be used and their location
  103  and cost. The application may also include any perceived
  104  advantages to site location, including the benefits to students,
  105  shared bus lines, programming during after-school hours with
  106  children, or blended learning opportunities.
  107         6. Contains the qualifications required of the teachers and
  108  the potential strategies used to recruit, hire, train, and
  109  retain qualified staff to achieve the best value.
  110         7. If applicable, documents that the applicant has
  111  contracted with a provider of virtual instruction services. A
  112  family charter academy may implement blended learning courses
  113  that combine traditional classroom instruction and virtual
  114  instruction.
  115         (5) SPONSOR; DUTIES.—
  116         (a) Sponsoring entities.
  117         1. A district school board may sponsor a family charter
  118  academy in the county over which the district school board has
  119  jurisdiction.
  120         2. A Florida College System institution may sponsor a
  121  family charter academy in its designated service area.
  122         (b) Sponsor duties.
  123         1. The sponsor shall monitor and review the family charter
  124  academy in its progress toward the goals established in the
  125  charter.
  126         2. The sponsor shall ensure that the family charter academy
  127  participates in the state’s education accountability system. All
  128  pretest and posttest scores on the Tests of Adult Basic
  129  Education (TABE) or the Comprehensive Adult Student Assessment
  130  System (CASAS) shall be reported to the sponsor for the purpose
  131  of providing an annual assessment of gain scores by students.
  132         3. A sponsor’s decision to grant or deny an application is
  133  in the sole discretion of the sponsor. The sponsor’s decision is
  134  not appealable and is not subject to further review.
  136         (a) A sponsor is encouraged to establish a performance
  137  based contract for each family charter academy that is created.
  138  Performance measures may include assessment scores, attendance
  139  data, or other indicia of performance.
  140         (b) In order to facilitate an accurate performance-based
  141  budget projection process, a sponsor is encouraged to provide in
  142  writing to a family charter academy applicant the sponsor’s
  143  previous year’s average cost per adult student and the average
  144  annual gain scores on the TABE and the CASAS. The average cost
  145  shall be based on the annual cost, and the outcomes must include
  146  an average increase in TABE or CASAS scores.
  147         Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2012.