Florida Senate - 2019                        COMMITTEE AMENDMENT
       Bill No. PCS (813072) for SB 7070
                              LEGISLATIVE ACTION                        
                    Senate             .             House              
                  Comm: RCS            .                                
                  04/19/2019           .                                

       The Committee on Appropriations (Lee) recommended the following:
    1         Senate Amendment to Amendment (782410) (with title
    2  amendment)
    4         Delete lines 1505 - 1571
    5  and insert:
    6         Section 16. Effective upon becoming a law, subsections (2),
    7  (3), and (7) of section 1012.56, Florida Statutes, are amended
    8  to read:
    9         1012.56 Educator certification requirements.—
   10         (2) ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA.—To be eligible to seek
   11  certification, a person must:
   12         (a) Be at least 18 years of age.
   13         (b) File an affidavit that the applicant subscribes to and
   14  will uphold the principles incorporated in the Constitution of
   15  the United States and the Constitution of the State of Florida
   16  and that the information provided in the application is true,
   17  accurate, and complete. The affidavit shall be by original
   18  signature or by electronic authentication. The affidavit shall
   19  include substantially the following warning:
   21  WARNING: Giving false information in order to obtain or renew a
   22  Florida educator’s certificate is a criminal offense under
   23  Florida law. Anyone giving false information on this affidavit
   24  is subject to criminal prosecution as well as disciplinary
   25  action by the Education Practices Commission.
   26         (c) Document receipt of a bachelor’s or higher degree from
   27  an accredited institution of higher learning, or a nonaccredited
   28  institution of higher learning that the Department of Education
   29  has identified as having a quality program resulting in a
   30  bachelor’s degree, or higher. Each applicant seeking initial
   31  certification must have attained at least a 2.5 overall grade
   32  point average on a 4.0 scale in the applicant’s major field of
   33  study. The applicant may document the required education by
   34  submitting official transcripts from institutions of higher
   35  education or by authorizing the direct submission of such
   36  official transcripts through established electronic network
   37  systems. The bachelor’s or higher degree may not be required in
   38  areas approved in rule by the State Board of Education as
   39  nondegreed areas. The State Board of Education may adopt rules
   40  that, for purposes of demonstrating completion of specific
   41  certification requirements, allow for the acceptance of college
   42  course credits recommended by the American Council for Education
   43  (ACE), as posted on an official ACE transcript.
   44         (d) Submit to background screening in accordance with
   45  subsection (10). If the background screening indicates a
   46  criminal history or if the applicant acknowledges a criminal
   47  history, the applicant’s records shall be referred to the
   48  investigative section in the Department of Education for review
   49  and determination of eligibility for certification. If the
   50  applicant fails to provide the necessary documentation requested
   51  by the department within 90 days after the date of the receipt
   52  of the certified mail request, the statement of eligibility and
   53  pending application shall become invalid.
   54         (e) Be of good moral character.
   55         (f) Be competent and capable of performing the duties,
   56  functions, and responsibilities of an educator.
   57         (g) Demonstrate mastery of general knowledge, pursuant to
   58  subsection (3), if the person serves as a classroom teacher
   59  pursuant to s. 1012.01(2)(a).
   60         (h) Demonstrate mastery of subject area knowledge, pursuant
   61  to subsection (5).
   62         (i) Demonstrate mastery of professional preparation and
   63  education competence, pursuant to subsection (6).
   64         (3) MASTERY OF GENERAL KNOWLEDGE.—Acceptable means of
   65  demonstrating mastery of general knowledge are:
   66         (a) Achievement of passing scores on the general knowledge
   67  examination required by state board rule;
   68         (b) Documentation of a valid professional standard teaching
   69  certificate issued by another state;
   70         (c) Documentation of a valid certificate issued by the
   71  National Board for Professional Teaching Standards or a national
   72  educator credentialing board approved by the State Board of
   73  Education;
   74         (d) Documentation of two semesters of successful, full-time
   75  or part-time teaching in a Florida College System institution,
   76  state university, or private college or university that awards
   77  an associate or higher degree and is an accredited institution
   78  or an institution of higher education identified by the
   79  Department of Education as having a quality program; or
   80         (e) Effective July 1, 2015, Achievement of passing scores,
   81  identified in state board rule, on national or international
   82  examinations that test comparable content and relevant standards
   83  in verbal, analytical writing, and quantitative reasoning
   84  skills, including, but not limited to, the verbal, analytical
   85  writing, and quantitative reasoning portions of the Graduate
   86  Record Examination. Passing scores identified in state board
   87  rule must be at approximately the same level of rigor as is
   88  required to pass the general knowledge examinations.
   90  A school district that employs an individual who does not
   91  achieve passing scores on any subtest of the general knowledge
   92  examination must provide information regarding the availability
   93  of state-level and district-level supports and instruction to
   94  assist him or her in achieving a passing score. Such information
   95  must include, but need not be limited to, state-level test
   96  information guides, school district test preparation resources,
   97  and preparation courses offered by state universities and
   98  Florida College System institutions.
  100         (a) The Department of Education shall issue a professional
  101  certificate for a period not to exceed 5 years to any applicant
  102  who fulfills one of the following:
  103         1. Meets all the applicable requirements outlined in
  104  subsection (2).
  105         2. For a professional certificate covering grades 6 through
  106  12:
  107         a. Meets the applicable requirements of paragraphs (2)(a)
  108  (h).
  109         b. Holds a master’s or higher degree in the area of
  110  science, technology, engineering, or mathematics.
  111         c. Teaches a high school course in the subject of the
  112  advanced degree.
  113         d. Is rated highly effective as determined by the teacher’s
  114  performance evaluation under s. 1012.34, based in part on
  115  student performance as measured by a statewide, standardized
  116  assessment or an Advanced Placement, Advanced International
  117  Certificate of Education, or International Baccalaureate
  118  examination.
  119         e. Achieves a passing score on the Florida professional
  120  education competency examination required by state board rule.
  121         3. Meets the applicable requirements of paragraphs (2)(a)
  122  (h) and completes a professional preparation and education
  123  competence program approved by the department pursuant to
  124  paragraph (8)(c). An applicant who completes the program and is
  125  rated highly effective as determined by his or her performance
  126  evaluation under s. 1012.34 is not required to take or achieve a
  127  passing score on the professional education competency
  128  examination in order to be awarded a professional certificate.
  130  ================= T I T L E  A M E N D M E N T ================
  131  And the title is amended as follows:
  132         Delete lines 2346 - 2347
  133  and insert:
  134         made by the act; amending s. 1012.56, F.S.; revising
  135         eligibility criteria for educator certification;
  136         deleting obsolete language; requiring school districts
  137         to