Florida Senate - 2023                   (PROPOSED BILL) SPB 7014
       FOR CONSIDERATION By the Committee on Criminal Justice
       591-01804A-23                                         20237014pb
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to juvenile justice; amending s.
    3         20.316, F.S.; requiring that the secretary of the
    4         Department of Juvenile Justice oversee the
    5         establishment of the Florida Scholars Academy;
    6         revising a duty of the secretary; creating s. 985.619,
    7         F.S.; requiring that the department establish the
    8         academy; specifying the academy’s mission; requiring
    9         the academy to provide students with greater access to
   10         secondary and postsecondary educational opportunities;
   11         providing requirements for the contractual agreement
   12         entered into by the department with an education
   13         service provider; requiring that the superintendent of
   14         the academy be approved by the secretary; requiring
   15         that the academy be governed by a board of trustees;
   16         providing for board membership; specifying the powers
   17         and duties of the board; specifying funding sources
   18         for the academy; providing requirements related to
   19         funding; prohibiting the pledging of the state’s
   20         credit on behalf of the academy; requiring annual
   21         financial audits of the academy; providing audit
   22         requirements; providing requirements for an audit
   23         report; authorizing the department to adopt rules;
   24         amending s. 1000.04, F.S.; specifying that the academy
   25         is a component of the delivery of public education
   26         within Florida’s Early Learning-20 education system;
   27         amending s. 1013.53, F.S.; requiring the department to
   28         provide early notice to school districts regarding the
   29         siting of new juvenile justice detention facilities;
   30         requiring that school districts be consulted regarding
   31         the types of students expected to be assigned to
   32         detention facilities, rather than commitment
   33         facilities; deleting requirements of the department
   34         related to commitment facilities; providing an
   35         appropriation; providing an effective date.
   37  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   39         Section 1. Paragraph (c) of subsection (1) of section
   40  20.316, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
   41         20.316 Department of Juvenile Justice.—There is created a
   42  Department of Juvenile Justice.
   44         (c) The Secretary of Juvenile Justice shall:
   45         1. Ensure that juvenile justice continuum programs and
   46  services are implemented according to legislative intent; state
   47  and federal laws, rules, and regulations; statewide program
   48  standards; and performance objectives by reviewing and
   49  monitoring regional and circuit program operations and providing
   50  technical assistance to those programs.
   51         2. Identify the need for and recommend the funding and
   52  implementation of an appropriate mix of programs and services
   53  within the juvenile justice continuum, including prevention,
   54  diversion, nonresidential and residential commitment programs,
   55  training schools, and conditional release programs and services,
   56  with an overlay of educational, career and technical education
   57  vocational, alcohol, drug abuse, and mental health services
   58  where appropriate.
   59         3. Oversee the establishment of the Florida Scholars
   60  Academy created under s. 985.619.
   61         4.3. Provide for program research, development, and
   62  planning.
   63         5.4. Develop staffing and workload standards and coordinate
   64  staff development and training.
   65         6.5. Develop budget and resource allocation methodologies
   66  and strategies.
   67         7.6. Establish program policies and rules and ensure that
   68  those policies and rules encourage cooperation, collaboration,
   69  and information sharing with community partners in the juvenile
   70  justice system to the extent authorized by law.
   71         8.7. Develop funding sources external to state government.
   72         9.8. Obtain, approve, monitor, and coordinate research and
   73  program development grants.
   74         10.9. Enter into contracts.
   75         11.10. Monitor all state-funded programs, grants,
   76  appropriations, or activities that are designed to prevent
   77  juvenile crime, delinquency, gang membership, or status offense
   78  behaviors and all state-funded programs, grants, appropriations,
   79  or activities that are designed to prevent a child from becoming
   80  a “child in need of services,” as defined in chapter 984, in
   81  order to effect the goals and policies of the State
   82  Comprehensive Plan regarding children and regarding governmental
   83  efficiency, and in order to determine:
   84         a. The number of youth served by such state-funded
   85  programs, grants, appropriations, or activities;
   86         b. The number of youth who complete such state-funded
   87  programs, grants, appropriations, or activities;
   88         c. The number and percentage of youth who are referred for
   89  delinquency while participating in such state-funded programs,
   90  grants, appropriations, or activities;
   91         d. The number and percentage of youth who are referred for
   92  delinquency within 6 months after completing such state-funded
   93  programs, grants, appropriations, or activities.
   94         Section 2. Section 985.619, Florida Statutes, is created to
   95  read:
   96         985.619 Florida Scholars Academy.—
   97         (1)ESTABLISHMENT.—
   98         (a) The department shall establish the Florida Scholars
   99  Academy to deliver educational opportunities to students served
  100  in residential commitment programs under this chapter.
  101         (b) Each residential program site established, authorized,
  102  or designated by the department is considered a campus of the
  103  Florida Scholars Academy.
  104         (c) Students sentenced by a court to adult facilities under
  105  chapter 944 are not eligible to enroll in the Florida Scholars
  106  Academy.
  107         (2) MISSION.—The mission of the Florida Scholars Academy is
  108  to provide a free and appropriate high-quality education to
  109  eligible students within the juvenile justice system. The
  110  academy shall provide students with greater access to secondary
  111  and postsecondary educational opportunities, including, but not
  112  limited to, pathways to attain a high school diploma, the career
  113  and technical education graduation pathway option provided under
  114  s. 1003.4282(10), a high school equivalency diploma, enrolling
  115  in a degree program at a state college or university, and
  116  earning an industry-recognized credential of value from the
  117  Master Credentials List as described in s. 445.004(4)(h) to
  118  prepare students to be gainfully employed and productive members
  119  of society upon their exit from the state’s juvenile justice
  120  system.
  121         (3)REQUIRED CONTRACTING.—
  122         (a) The department shall enter into a contractual agreement
  123  with an education service provider with a proven track record of
  124  success to operate, provide, or supplement full-time instruction
  125  and instructional support services for students to earn a high
  126  school diploma or high school equivalency diploma, enroll in a
  127  degree program at a state college or university, and earn
  128  industry-recognized credentials of value from the Master
  129  Credentials List. The contracted education service provider is
  130  responsible for the administration of all educational services
  131  to students enrolled in the academy.
  132         (b) The superintendent of the Florida Scholars Academy must
  133  be approved by the secretary of the department. The
  134  superintendent is responsible for the management and day-to-day
  135  operations of the Florida Scholars Academy.
  137         (a)1. The Florida Scholars Academy shall be governed by a
  138  board of trustees, composed of the following five members:
  139         a. The secretary of the department, or his or her designee.
  140         b. The superintendent of the Florida Scholars Academy.
  141         c. Three members appointed by the Governor.
  142         2.The secretary of the department or his or her designee
  143  shall be the initial chair of the board and shall serve a term
  144  of 4 years. Members of the board of trustees shall serve without
  145  compensation but may be reimbursed for per diem and travel
  146  expenses pursuant to s. 112.061.
  147         (b) The board of trustees shall have the following powers
  148  and duties:
  149         1. Meet at least 4 times each year, upon the call of the
  150  chair, or at the request of a majority of the membership.
  151         2. Be responsible for the Florida Scholars Academy’s
  152  development of an education delivery system that is cost
  153  effective, high-quality, educationally sound, and capable of
  154  sustaining an effective delivery system.
  155         3.a.Identify appropriate performance measures and
  156  standards based on student achievement which reflect the
  157  school’s statutory mission and priorities, and implement an
  158  accountability system approved by the State Board of Education
  159  for the school by the 2024-2025 school year which includes an
  160  assessment of its effectiveness and efficiency in providing
  161  quality services that encourage high student achievement,
  162  seamless articulation, and maximum access to career
  163  opportunities.
  164         b. For the 2024-2025 school year, the results of the
  165  accountability system must serve as an informative baseline for
  166  the academy as it works to improve performance in future years.
  167         4. Administer and maintain the educational programs of the
  168  Florida Scholars Academy in accordance with law and department
  169  rules, in consultation with the State Board of Education.
  170         5. With the approval of the secretary of the department or
  171  his or her designee, determine the compensation, including
  172  salaries and fringe benefits, and other conditions of employment
  173  for such personnel, in alignment with the Florida Scholars
  174  Academy’s provider contracts.
  175         6. The employment of all Florida Scholars Academy
  176  administrative and instructional personnel are subject to
  177  rejection for cause by the secretary of the department or his or
  178  her designee and are subject to policies established by the
  179  board of trustees.
  180         7. Provide for the content and custody of student records
  181  in compliance with s. 1002.22.
  182         8. Maintain the financial records and accounts of the
  183  Florida Scholars Academy in compliance with rules adopted by the
  184  State Board of Education for the uniform system of financial
  185  records and accounts for the schools of this state.
  186         9. Is a body corporate with all the powers of a body
  187  corporate and may exercise such authority as is needed for the
  188  proper operation and improvement of the Florida Scholars
  189  Academy. The board of trustees is specifically authorized to
  190  adopt rules, policies, and procedures, consistent with law and
  191  State Board of Education rules related to governance, personnel,
  192  budget and finance, administration, programs, curriculum and
  193  instruction, travel and purchasing, technology, students,
  194  contracts and grants, and property as necessary for optimal,
  195  efficient operation of the Florida Scholars Academy.
  196         (5) FUNDING.—
  197         (a)1. Funding for the operational and instructional
  198  services for students enrolled in the Florida Scholars Academy
  199  must be provided by the General Appropriations Act.
  200         2. The Florida Scholars Academy shall receive all federal
  201  funds for which it is eligible.
  202         (b) The secretary of the department shall prepare and
  203  submit a legislative budget request on behalf of the Florida
  204  Scholars Academy as part of the department’s legislative budget
  205  request. The request of funds may be for operation and fixed
  206  capital outlay, in accordance with chapter 216.
  207         (c) The fiscal year for the Florida Scholars Academy is the
  208  state fiscal year as defined in s. 216.011(1)(o).
  209         (d) Notwithstanding s. 216.301 and pursuant to s. 216.351,
  210  all unexpended funds appropriated for the Florida Scholars
  211  Academy must be carried forward and included as the balance
  212  forward for that fund in the approved operating budget for the
  213  following year.
  214         (e)1. The Florida Scholars Academy shall maintain at least
  215  a 3 percent general fund ending fund balance, which amount must
  216  be sufficient to address normal contingencies.
  217         2. If at any time the portion of the general fund’s ending
  218  fund balance not classified as restricted, committed, or
  219  nonspendable in the Florida Scholars Academy’s approved
  220  operating budget is projected to fall below 2 percent of
  221  projected general fund revenues during the current fiscal year,
  222  the secretary of the department or his or her designee shall
  223  provide written notification to the Commissioner of Education.
  224  If the commissioner determines that the Florida Scholars Academy
  225  does not have a plan that is reasonably anticipated to avoid a
  226  financial emergency as determined pursuant to s. 218.503, the
  227  commissioner must, within 14 days after receiving such
  228  notification, appoint a financial emergency board that shall
  229  operate under the requirements, powers, and duties specified in
  230  s. 218.503(3)(g).
  231         (6) STATE CREDIT LIMITATION.—The credit of the state may
  232  not be pledged under any circumstance on behalf of the Florida
  233  Scholars Academy.
  234         (7) ANNUAL AUDIT.—
  235         (a) The Florida Scholars Academy must have an annual
  236  financial audit of its accounts and records conducted by an
  237  independent auditor who is a certified public accountant
  238  licensed under chapter 473. The independent auditor shall
  239  conduct the audit in accordance with rules adopted by the
  240  Auditor General pursuant to s. 11.45 and, upon completion of the
  241  audit, shall prepare an audit report in accordance with such
  242  rules. The audit report must include a written statement by the
  243  board of trustees describing corrective action to be taken in
  244  response to each of the independent auditor’s recommendations
  245  included in the audit report.
  246         (b) The independent auditor shall submit the audit report
  247  to the board of trustees and the Auditor General not later than
  248  9 months after the end of the preceding fiscal year.
  249         (8) RULEMAKING.—The department may establish rules to
  250  implement this section.
  251         Section 3. Subsection (6) is added to section 1000.04,
  252  Florida Statutes, to read:
  253         1000.04 Components for the delivery of public education
  254  within the Florida Early Learning-20 education system.—Florida’s
  255  Early Learning-20 education system provides for the delivery of
  256  early learning and public education through publicly supported
  257  and controlled K-12 schools, Florida College System
  258  institutions, state universities and other postsecondary
  259  educational institutions, other educational institutions, and
  260  other educational services as provided or authorized by the
  261  Constitution and laws of the state.
  262         (6) FLORIDA SCHOLARS ACADEMY.—The Florida Scholars Academy
  263  is a component of the delivery of public education within the
  264  Florida Early Learning-20 education system.
  265         Section 4. Section 1013.53, Florida Statutes, is amended to
  266  read:
  267         1013.53 Cooperative development of educational facilities
  268  in juvenile justice programs.—
  269         (1) The Department of Juvenile Justice shall provide early
  270  notice to school districts regarding the siting of new juvenile
  271  justice detention facilities. School districts shall include the
  272  projected number of students in the districts’ annual estimates.
  273  School districts must be consulted regarding the types of
  274  students expected to be assigned to detention commitment
  275  facilities for education planning and budgeting purposes.
  276         (2) The Department of Juvenile Justice shall notify, in
  277  writing, the Department of Education when a request for
  278  proposals is issued for the construction or operation of a
  279  commitment or detention facility anywhere in this the state. The
  280  Department of Juvenile Justice shall notify, in writing, the
  281  appropriate school district when a request for proposals is
  282  issued for the construction or operation of a commitment or
  283  detention facility when a county or site is specifically
  284  identified.
  285         (3) The Department of Juvenile Justice shall also notify
  286  the district school superintendent within 30 days after:
  287         (a) The award of a contract for the construction or
  288  operation of a commitment or detention facility within that
  289  school district.
  290         (b) Obtaining a permit to begin construction of a new
  291  detention or commitment facility within that school district.
  292         Section 5. For the 2023-2024 fiscal year, the recurring sum
  293  of $12 million is appropriated from the General Revenue Fund to
  294  the Department of Juvenile Justice for the purpose of carrying
  295  out the provisions of this act.
  296         Section 6. This act shall take effect July 1, 2023.