Senate Counsel, Research
and Fiscal Analysis
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Alexis C. Stangl
State of Minnesota
S.F. No. 2482 - Education Omnibus Bill (Delete-Everything Amendment)
Author: Senator Gen Olson
Prepared By: Ann Marie Lewis, Senate Counsel (651/296-5301)
Eric Nauman, Senate Fiscal Analyst (651/296-5539)
Date: April 2, 2012


Article 1.  General Education

Section 1.  Education, Residence, and Transportation of Homeless.  Paragraph (a) changes “person of school age” to “pupil” for the purposes under this section.

Paragraph (b) changes the determination for the pupil's district of residence to be the residence of the parent or legal guardian unless:

  1. parental rights have been terminated;
  2. the parent or guardian is not living within the state; or
  3. the parent or guardian is an inmate of a Minnesota correctional facility or a resident of a halfway house.

Designates the district of residence for these pupils as the district in which the pupil resided when the qualifying event occurred.  Directs the Commissioner of Education to designate residency in the event of a dispute between districts.

Paragraph (c) designates a district of residence responsibility and conditions for transportation of a homeless student.  Requires the serving district to be responsible for transporting a homeless pupil from their residence.  Allows the serving district to transport a pupil from a permanent home in another district, but only through the end of the academic year.  The district or school that provides transportation for other pupils enrolled in the charter school is responsible for providing transportation for homeless pupils enrolled in that school.  Requires the district of residence to be responsible for a homeless student with or without an individualized education program attending a public school other than an independent or special school district or charter school.

Section 2. Assessment of Performance.  Limits the age of children enrolled in home school who are required to be assessed using a nationally norm-referenced standardized achievement examination to the compulsory age of instruction.

Section 3. Reports to Superintendent.  Requires nonpublic schools (in addition to the person in charge of providing instruction) to comply with district oversight requirements and submit information for this purpose to the superintendent of the district in which a child resides.

Section 4.  Early Graduation. Paragraph (b) strikes a provision that requires general revenue attributable to a student who participates in the early graduation scholarship program or early graduation military service award program to be paid as though the student was in attendance for an entire year.

Effective date.  Makes this section effective for fiscal year 2012 and later.

Section 5.  Early Graduation Achievement Scholarship Program.  Subdivision 1.  Participation.  Allows a student to be eligible for the early graduation achievement scholarship program if they are enrolled in a public school, generate Minnesota general education revenue, graduate prior to the end of their fourth school year after first enrolling in ninth grade, and have not participated in the early graduation military service award program.

Subdivision 1a.  Eligible Student.  Defines an “eligible student” as a secondary student enrolled in a Minnesota public school who, at the time of graduation, generate Minnesota general education revenue, and graduates prior to the end of the fourth school year after first enrolling in ninth grade.

Subdivision 2.  Scholarship Amounts.  Replaces “graduate” with “qualify for graduation” as a condition for a student's eligibility to receive a scholarship.  Defines participation in the optional summer term, extended day sessions, and intersessions of a state-approved learning year program, as a quarter for purposes of computing the scholarship amount.

Subdivision 3.  Scholarship Uses.  Limits the use of a scholarship to an “institution of higher education accredited by an accrediting agency recognized by the United States Department of Education” in place of an “accredited institution of higher education.”

Subdivision 5.  Enrollment Verification.  Changes the time limit from 15 to 45 days in which the commissioner, upon receipt of the student's enrollment and tuition verification form, must issue a scholarship check to an accredited Institution of Higher Education.  Requires the scholarship check to be issue to the institution of higher education rather than the student.  Limits the time that a student may use the scholarship to six years from the student’s graduation from secondary school, or until the full amount has been used, whichever comes first.

Effective date. This section is effective for fiscal year 2012 and later.

Section 6. Early Graduation Military Service Award Program.

Subdivision 1 Eligibility.  Allows a student to be eligible for the early graduation military service award program if they are enrolled in a public school, generate Minnesota general education revenue, graduate prior to the end of the fourth school year after first enrolling in ninth grade, and have not participated in the early graduation achievement scholarship program.

Subdivision 2. Application.  Requires that a scholarship application be received at the Department of Education within 2 calendar years of the date of graduation.

Subdivision 3. Verification and Award. Requires that the request for payment be received at the Department of Education by the end of the second fiscal year following the date of the student's graduation.

Effective date.  This section is effective for fiscal year 2012 and later.

Section 7.  Revenue Timing.  Eliminates obsolete language relating to alternative teacher compensation aid entitlement allocated to charter schools.  Changes the base year of the charter school enrollment ratio used to generate future entitlements.

Section 8.  Alternative Attendance Programs.  Requires that transportation for homeless nonresident pupils be provided from the pupil's residence to and from the school of enrollment.

Section 9.  Continued Enrollment for Homeless Students.  Allows a homeless student whose parent or guardian has moved to another district to continue to enroll in the non-resident district without the approval of the school board of the nonresident district or resident district.

Section 10. Authorization; Career and Technical Education.  Allows a 10th, 11th, or 12th grade student, except a foreign exchange student, to enroll in a career and technical education course offered by MnSCU.  Requires a 10th grade student to pass the 8th grade reading MCA in order to participate.  Allows an eligible student refused enrollment by MnSCU to apply to an eligible institution offering a career and technical education course or to a private for-profit or not-for-profit college or university eligible to receive state student aid.  Requires the institutions to give enrollment priority to their postsecondary students.  Requires a postsecondary institution to allow a secondary student who receives a career and technical education course grade of “C” or better to take additional secondary courses at the institution.  Defines a “career and technical education course” as part of a career and technical education program that provides students with coherent, rigorous content aligned with academic standards and the technical knowledge and skills needed to prepare for further education and careers in current and emerging professions and provide technical skill proficiency, an industry-recognized credential, and a certificate, diploma, or associate degree.

Section 11.  Enrollment Priority.  Eliminates language restricting post-secondary institutions from advertising or soliciting the participation of secondary pupils on financial grounds.

Section 12. Credits. Allows a pupil to enroll in a post-secondary course and receive both secondary and post-secondary credit.  Institutions must grant post-secondary credit to an entering student for successfully completed post-secondary courses consistent with the institution’s credit transfer policy.

Section 13. Financial Arrangements. Eliminates a restriction that prohibited the Department of Education from making payments to school districts and post-secondary institutions for a course taken for post-secondary credit only.

Section 14. Limit; State Obligation.  Allows a student that is enrolled in a post-secondary course to receive post-secondary credit and are eligible for funding of transportation, fees, textbooks, materials, and transportation.

Effective date.  Makes this section effective for the 2012-2013 school year and later.

Section 15.  Federal, State and Local Requirements.  Allows a charter school to generate shared time aid revenue for serving home-school students.

Section 16.  Reallocating General Education Revenue for all-day Kindergarten and Prekindergarten.  eliminates a provision that allows school districts to reallocate revenue attributable to 12th grade students who graduated under the scholarship programs defined in Section 5 and Section  6 to all-day kindergarten and pre-kindergarten programs.

Section 17. Exception.  Requires a district of residence to grant a charter school at which a shared time pupil attends class, permission to claim the pupil as a resident for state aid purposes.  Allows the charter school to bill the resident district for transportation costs if the resident district agrees.  The resident district and the district or charter school of attendance may negotiate an agreement to pay transportation costs specified in section 123B.92.

Effective date. Makes this section effective for revenue for fiscal year 2014 and later.

Section 18. Cash Flow Adjustment.  Allows a charter school serving fewer than 200 students instead of 150 students to request accelerated special education aid payments from the Commissioner if the percentage eligible for special education services equals at least 90 percent of the school's total enrollment.

Section 19.  Aid to Serving District.  Requires that general education revenue be paid to the resident district for a homeless child that is enrolled in a school other than an independent or special school district or charter school.

Section 20.  Requirements for Participation.  Allows a postsecondary institution to recruit or solicit participation by secondary pupils in the post-secondary enrollment options (PSEO) program based on financial grounds.

Section 21.  PSEO Appropriation Adjustment. For fiscal year 2013 only, directs the Commissioner of Education to limit PSEO appropriation payments for 10th grade students enrolling in career and technical education courses.

Effective date. Makes this section effective for revenue for fiscal year 2013 only.

Section 22.  Appropriation Adjustments.  Directs the Commissioner to adjust appropriations made to the department  of education from the general fund for effects of statutory changes made in this act.

Section 23. Revisor’s Instruction.  Instructs the Revisor of Statutes to substitute “English learner,” “EL,” or similar term for “limited English proficient,” “English language learner,” “LEP,” or “ELL,” or similar term when referring to early childhood through grade 12 education.

Section 24. Repealer.  Repeals sections 124D.09, subdivision 23 (PSEO: Exception; intermediate schools) and 127A.47, subdivision 2 (Payments to resident and nonresident districts: Reporting; revenue for homeless).

Article 2.  Education Excellence

Section 1. Applicability. Strikes an obsolete cross-reference.

Section 2. Revisions and Review Required.  Allows a student scheduled to graduate in the 2014-2015 school year and later to satisfactorily complete a chemistry, physics, or career and technical education credit that utilizes standards associated with the chemistry, physics, or biology credit or a combination thereof.

Section 3.  Graduation Requirements; Course Credits.  Clarifies that a career and technical education course may fulfill the chemistry or physics credit required for graduation.

Section 4.  Identification; Report.  Directs districts to submit local reading assessments results to the Commissioner by July 1, instead of June 1.

Section 5.  Program Structure; Training Programs for Teachers.  Strikes a purpose statement.

Section 6.  Statewide Testing.  For the 2012-2013 and 2013-2014 school years only, allows students who have not successfully passed the basic skills test by the end of the 2011-2012 school year to satisfy the states’ math test requirement by: (1) completing all state and local coursework and credits required for graduation by the school board granting their diploma; and (2) fully participating in at least two retests of the math GRAD test or until they pass the test, whichever comes first.

Section 7.  Probationary Period.  Allows a school board to give written notice that it is not going to renew a probationary teacher’s contract to the teacher by July 1, instead of June 1.

Effective Date.   Makes the section effective for the 2012-2013 school year and later.

Section 8. Prohibitions on Political Activities by Public School Employees.  Directs school boards to develop and implement policies to ensure publicly funded resources, including, but not limited to, time, materials, equipment, facilities, and e-mail are not used by public employees to: 

  1. advocate the election or defeat of any candidate for elective office;
  2. advocate for or against a referendum question; or
  3. solicit funds for political purposes.

The policies must define the appropriate use of school computers with Internet accesses that are available for employee use.  The policies must allow for use of public funds for disseminating factual information about a proposition appearing on a local ballot.

Effective Date.  Makes the section effective six months following final enactment.

Section 9.  Site Decision-Making; Individualized Learning Agreement; Other Agreements.

Subdivision 1a.  Individualized Learning and Instruction; Improved Student Achievement.  A school board that chooses to enter into an achievement contract under this section must consider how to:

  1. assist a school site to adapt instruction to individual student needs, and establish goals and standards for individual students in addition to the state academic standards;
  2. coordinate the pace of instruction and learning with the needs and aptitudes of individual students;
  3. provide useful data and assist with research in developing and improving innovative, cost-effective, research-based individualized learning, instruction, and assessment;
  4. demonstrate and help evaluate instructional alternatives to age-based grade progression;
  5. more effectively motivate students and teachers; and
  6. expand use of learning technology to support individualized learning, instruction, assessment, and achievement.

Subdivision 2.  Agreement.  Permits a school board and a school site to enter into an agreement to develop and implement an individualized learning and achievement contract. 

Subdivision 4.  Achievement Contract.  Allows a school board and a site decision-making team to enter into a site achievement contract for:

  1. setting individualized learning and achievement measures and short- and long-term education goals for each student at the site;
  2. recognizing each student’s educational needs and aptitudes and levels of academic attainment;
  3. using student performance data to diagnose a student’s academic strengths and weaknesses and indicate to teachers the specific skills and concepts that need to be introduced to the student and developed through instruction or applied learning during the next year, consistent with the student’s short- and long-term educational goals; and
  4. assisting the education site if progress in achieving student or contract goals or other performance expectations  agreed to by the board and site team are not realized or implemented.

Subdivision 4a.  Additional Site Agreements Premised on Successful Achievement Contracts.  A school board that enters into an agreement with a school site under Subdivision 4 where student performance data at the site show at least three consecutive school years of improved student achievement consistent with terms of the agreement must try to establish a similar contract with other school sites in the district.

Effective Date.   Makes the section effective immediately.

Section 10.  Duties; Evaluation.  Requires the annual principal evaluation to include student academic growth as 35 percent of the evaluation.

Effective Date.   Makes the section effective for the 2013-2014 school year and later.

Section 11.  Transportation.  Allows an alternative pupil’s parents, if the family income is at or below the poverty level, to apply to the pupil’s postsecondary institution for reimbursement for transporting the pupil between their secondary school or home and the pupil’s postsecondary institution when the pupil is participating in the Postsecondary Enrollment Options Program.

Section 12.  Authorizer.  Paragraph (f) allows any approved authorizer, instead of one that has chartered multiple schools, to vote to withdraw as an approved authorizer. 

Section 13.  Formation of School.  Paragraph (e) directs a charter school to publish and maintain the following on the school’s Web site:

  1. minutes from board of director’s meetings and meetings of members and committees having board-delegated authority, for at least one calendar year;
  2. directory information for members of the board of directors and of committees having board-delegated authority; and
  3. identifying and contact information for the school’s authorizer.

Paragraph (f) strikes the requirement that the ongoing training charter school board members receive be department-approved.  Directs the school to included in its annual report the training attended by each board member during the previous year.

Paragraph (k) prohibits an authorizer from giving final approval to the expansion of a charter school until the Commissioner completes the review and comment process.

Paragraph (l) provides a process for charter schools to merge.  The merger must comply with chapter 317A and section 124D.11, Subdivision 9, paragraph (g).  At a minimum, the negotiated merger plan must include:

  1. a merger budget, a multiyear operating budget for the merged charter school, a long-range financial plan, and a plan for the transfer of assets and liabilities to the merged school;
  2. a process for transitioning responsibility of governance, administration and all operations to the merged charter school;
  3. a statement of academic, student engagement, and organizational operations goals for the merged school; and
  4. an agreement between the involved authorizers on the authorizing plan for the merged school.

Approval of the board of directors of the merging charter schools, the authorizers of those schools, and the authorizer of the merged school is required to adopt the merger plan.  The plan must be submitted to the Commissioner for review and comment after it’s adoption.  The merger cannot take effect until the Commissioner completes the review.

Section 14.  Charter Contract.  Clause (10) allows the initial charter school contract term to be five years, instead of three.

Clause (12) requires the charter school contract to include the process the authorizer will use for making decisions regarding renewal, termination, and an appeal process of such termination of the school’s charter.

Clause (13) a charter school contract must include a dispute resolution process that includes at least the following:

  • a written notice process to invoke the dispute resolution process and a description of the matter in dispute;
  • a time limit for response; and
  • a  process for final resolution of the issue in dispute.

Section 15.  Pupil Performance.  Allows a charter school where 70 percent or more of its enrolled students are eligible to participate in the graduation incentives program is deemed an area learning center for the purpose of evaluating student and school academic performance outcomes and determining a school graduation rate.

Effective Date.   Makes the section effective immediately.

Section 16.  Employment and other Operating Matters.  Paragraph (d) direct the charter school board of directors to implement a performance evaluation process for all school employees.  The process for teachers and administrators must be designed to support and improve pupil learning and student achievement, instructional leadership, enhancing school outcomes, and be linked to professional development.

Section 17.  Length of School Year.  Conforms the length of school year for charter school to the length of school year for traditional public schools.

Section 18.  Annual Public Reports.  Eliminates the requirement that a charter school distribute its annual report to the Commissioner.

Section 19.  Review and Comment.  Prohibits an authorizer form assessing a fee for any required services except as already provided in this subdivision.

Section 20.  Affiliated Nonprofit Building Corporation.  Paragraph (b) clarifies that an affiliated nonprofit building corporation must comply with applicable Internal Revenue Service regulation, including those for “supporting organizations.”

Paragraph (c) directs a charter school to have a plan for the renovation or purchase of an existing facility that describes the parameters and budget for the project if it is organizing an affiliated nonprofit building corporation to renovate or purchase and existing facility.

Paragraph (d) allows for the organization of an affiliated nonprofit building corporation for the expansion of an existing school facility in addition to constructing a new school facility.  Amends the requirement that a school have a net positive unreserved general fund balance for the preceding five, instead of eight, fiscal years.  A charter school planning to expand a facility or constructing a new facility must have a plan for the expansion or new facility that describes the parameters and budget for the project.

Paragraph (e) prohibits a charter school or an affiliated nonprofit building corporation from initiating an installment contract for purchase, or a lease agreement, or solicit bids for new construction expansion, or remodeling of an educational facility that  requires an expenditure that exceeds $1,400,00 unless it meets the criteria of paragraphs (b) and (c) or (d), as applicable, and receives a positive review and comment from the Commissioner. 

Section 21.  Causes for Nonrenewal or Termination of Charter School Contract. Paragraph (c) allows for a mutually agreed upon transfer of authorizers at the end of the current contract if the current authorizer consents and the Commissioner provides a review and comment.  The proposed authorizer must submit the proposed new contract to the Commissioner for review and comment.  The proposed new contract must identify all unresolved contract or oversight issues that exist and include an agreed upon plan for resolution. 

Section 22.  Extent of Specific Legal Authority.  Strikes the requirement that the charter school board submit a copy of its insurance policy to the Commissioner.  Directs the charter school board to notify the authorizer of changes in its insurance carrier or policy amount limits.  Strikes the requirement to submit those changes to the Commissioner. 

Section 23.  Collaboration Between Charter School and School District.  Allows a charter school board to enter into a two-year renewable agreement to collaborate with a school district to enhance student achievement.  The charter school must be located within the geographic boundary of the school district.  The school district does not have to be an approved authorizer or the charter school’s authorizer.  Allows the agreement to include collaboration regarding facilities, transportation, training, student achievement, assessments, mutual performance standards and other areas of mutual agreement.  Directs the school district to include the academic performance of the students of a collaborating charter school site for the purposes of student assessment and reporting to the state.

Section 24.  Career and Technical Levy.  Adjusts the cap on the career and technical levy.

Effective Date.  Makes the section effective for taxes payable in 2013 and later.

Section 25.  Proficiency Aid.  Adjusts the formula for proficiency aid.

Section 26.  Growth Aid.  Adjusts the formula for growth aid.

Section 27.  To Lease Building or Land.  Paragraph (j) allows a school district that is a member of the St. Croix River Education District that enters into a lease purchase agreement for a building and land for the St. Croix River Education District to lev for its portion of lease costs attributed to the district.

Effective Date.   Makes the section effective for taxes payable in 2013 and later.

Section 28.  Student Organizations.  Corrects the acronyms for the student organizations appropriation.

Section 29.  Lease Levy; Administrative Space.  Subdivision 1.  Faribault.  Allows the Faribault school district to lease administrative space, if the district can demonstrate that the administrative space is less expensive that instructional spaces that the district would otherwise lease.  The school district must pass a resolution to lease administrative space.

Subdivision 2.  Wayzata.  Allows the Wayzata school district to lease administrative space, if the district can demonstrate that the administrative space is less expensive that instructional spaces that the district would otherwise lease.  The school district must pass a resolution to lease administrative space.

Effective Date.   Makes the section effective for taxes payable in 2013 and later.

Section 30.  Repealers.  Repeals sections 120A.28 (School Boards; Duties); 120B.019 (Repealing Profile of Learning Statutes and Rules); 120B.31, Subdivision 3 (Office of Educational Accountability); 121A.60 Subdivision 3 (School Site Mediation Board) and Subdivision 4 (School-Based Ombudsperson); 121A.62 (School Site Mediation Board); 121A.63 (Ombudsperson Service); and 122A.18, Subdivision 9 (Teacher Licenses).

Article 3.  Special Education and Other Programs

Section 1. Extended School Year.  Strikes references to a statutory provision that is to be repealed under Section 6 of this act.

Section 2.  Nonresident Education; Billing.  Requires that tuition billing be done on uniform forms prescribed by the Commissioner for the education of nonresident children temporarily placed for care and treatment or in education programs for students placed in residential facilities. 

Section 3.  Approval of Education Programs.  Defines “on-site education program” as educational services provided directly on the grounds of the care and treatment facility to children and youth placed for care or treatment.

Section 4.  School Districts.  Requires school district elections relating to their net debt limit to be held on general election day (the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November).

Section 5.  Early Childhood Education Scholarships.  Includes "evidence-based and research-validated early literacy home visiting programs" for children ages 18 months to 4 years as eligible for grants under this program.  Designates $250,000 of the current program appropriation for a grant to the "evidence-based early literacy Parent-Child Home Program."

Section 6. Repealer.  Repeals sections 125A.16 (Placement in a state institution; Responsibility), 125A.80 (Uniform billing system for the education costs of out-of-home placed students), and 475.53, subdivision 5 (Limit on net debt; Certain independent school districts).

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