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S.F. No. 1935 - E12 Division Omnibus (First Engrossment)
 
Author: Senator Charles W. Wiger
 
Prepared By: Bjorn E. Arneson, Senate Analyst (651/296-3812)
Ann Marie Lewis, Senate Counsel (651/296-5301)
Jay M. Willms, Senate Fiscal Analyst (651/296-2090)
 
Date: April 18, 2016



 

Article 1. General Education.

Section 1. Length of school year; hours of instruction. Requires that the school calendar for prekindergarten, if offered by the district, must include at least 350 hours of instruction for the school year.

Effective date: makes this section effective for the 2016-2017 school year and later.

Section 2. Program reimbursement. Provides that the state reimburses a district $1.30 for each school breakfast served to a prekindergarten pupil.

Effective date: makes this section effective for revenue in fiscal year 2017 and later.

Section 3. No fees. Prohibits a district from charging a fee for a school breakfast served to a prekindergarten pupil.

Effective date: makes this section effective for revenue in fiscal year 2017 and later.

Section 4. Voluntary prekindergarten program.

Subdivision 1. Establishment; purpose. Authorizes a school district, charter school, or combination thereof to operate a voluntary prekindergarten program for four-year-old pupils. Clarifies that the purpose of a prekindergarten program is to prepare students for kindergarten entry.

Subdivision 2. Program requirements. Requires that a program under this section meet certain program characteristics related to instruction, assessment, class size, teacher compensation, teacher licensure and qualifications, community involvement and coordination, parent engagement, and professional development, among other requirements. Requires districts and charter schools to include prekindergarten elements in the world’s best workforce report.

Subdivision 3. Mixed delivery of services. Authorizes a district or charter school to contract with a charter school, Head Start or child care center, licensed family child care programs, or community-based organization to provide the prekindergarten program.

Subdivision 4. Eligibility. Provides that a child is eligible to participate if they are at least four years-old on September 1 and complete all required screenings within 90 days of enrollment.

Subdivision 5. Application process; priority for high poverty schools. Provides for application and notification deadlines. Requires certain information related to the proposed program and estimated participation in the application materials. Requires the commissioner to proportionally allocate the funds available among four groups of applicants: (1) Minneapolis and Saint Paul, (2) metro-region school districts, (3) rural region school districts, and (4) charter schools. Requires that, within each of the four applicant groups, priority be given to applicants based on (1) the concentration of kindergarten students who qualify for free or reduced price lunch, and (2) the availability of three- or four-star Parent Aware rated programs within or near the district. Provides that an approved applicant shall remain approved, regardless of later changes in the concentration of students eligible for free- or reduced-price lunch. Directs the commissioner to break any ties in the rank order based on the proportion of the applicants prekindergarten teachers who have an early childhood license.

Subdivision 6. Program and revenue limits. Limits the number of prekindergarten pupil units for a district to no more than 60 percent of that district’s kindergarten pupil units. Requires the commissioner to limit the statewide aid entitlement for the prekindergarten program in fiscal year 2017 and later.

Effective date: makes this section effective for revenue in fiscal year 2017 and later.

Section 5. English learner. Provides that a prekindergarten pupil may meet the definition of “English learner” for the purposes of English learner programming and aid.

Effective date: makes this section effective for revenue in fiscal year 2017 and later.

Section 6. Eligible pupils. For the 2016-2017 school year only, allows an English learner with an interrupted formal education, who is 21, but not yet 22, to participate in the graduation incentives program and in concurrent enrollment course.

Section 7. Pupil unit. Provides that the pupil units for a prekindergarten pupil, except a pupil with a disability or assessed for a disability, equals the greater of 0.6 or the ratio of the number of hours of instruction to 850.

Effective date: makes this section effective for revenue in fiscal year 2017 and later.

Section 8. Compensation revenue pupil units. Clarifies the calculation of compensation revenue pupil units for prekindergarten programs in the first year of operation.

Effective date: makes this section effective for revenue in fiscal year 2017 and later.

Section 9. Declining enrollment revenue. Excludes prekindergarten pupil units from the calculation of declining enrollment revenue.

Effective date: makes this section effective for revenue in fiscal year 2017 and later.

Section 10. Operating capital levy. Changes the operating capital equalizing factor for fiscal year 2017 and later to offset increased levies associated with other provisions in this bill. Strikes other obsolete language.

Effective date: makes this section effective for revenue in fiscal year 2017 and later.

Section 11. Equity revenue. Modifies the equity revenue formula to provide additional revenue for certain districts that overlap the seven-county metro area.

Section 12. Early repayment. Authorizes a district with an outstanding capital loan balance that received a maximum effort loan prior to January 1, 2017, to repay the outstanding original principal balance and the liability of the district is satisfied and discharged and interest on the loan ceases.

Effective date: makes this section effective immediately.

Sections 13-15. Appropriations. See fiscal tracking sheets.

Section 16. Reciprocity agreement exemption; Hendricks. Exempts the Hendricks school district from the state’s reciprocity agreement with South Dakota.

Effective date. Makes this section effective for the 2016-2017 school year and later.

Article 2. Education Excellence.

Section 1. Student-user privacy requirements. States that section 125B.27 governs privacy related to online educational services.

Section 2. Required academic standards. Directs the department to adopt the most recent National Association of Sport and Physical Education kindergarten through grade 12 standards and benchmarks for physical education as the required state academic standards. Allows for modifications and adaptations of the standards to accommodate state interest as long as they maintain the purpose and integrity of the national standards. Directs the department to make sample assessments available beginning in the 2018-2019 school year.

Section 3. Rulemaking. Allows the commissioner to adopt rules to implement the physical education academic standards.

Section 4. Revisions and reviews required. Directs the commissioner to review the physical education academic standards and benchmarks beginning in the 2024-2025 school year and every ten years thereafter.

Section 5. Physical Education.

Subdivision 1. Exclusion from class; recess. Allows a student to be excused from a physical education class: 1) if the student submits information signed by a physician that physical activity will jeopardize the student’s health; 2) if being excused meets the child’s unique and individualized needs according to their individualized education program, 504 plan, or individualized health plan; or 3) if the parent or guardian requests an exemption on religious grounds.  Strongly encourages school not to exclude students from recess due to punishment or disciplinary action.

Subdivision 2. Teachers.  Requires physical education to be taught by teachers licensed to teach physical education. 

Section 6. Character development education.

Subdivision 1. Character development education. (b) Allows character development education to include a voluntary elementary, middle, and high school program that incorporates the history and values of Congressional Medal of Honor recipients. 

Subdivision 1a. Staff development; continuing education. Allows staff development opportunities under section 122A.60 to include training in character development education that incorporates the history and values of Congressional Medal of Honor recipients.  Encourages local continuing education and relicensure committees to approve up to six clock hours of continuing education for licensed teacher who complete the character development education training.

Subdivision 2. Funding sources. Allows districts to accept programs funded through the Congressional Medal of Honor foundation.

Effective Date. Makes the section effective immediately.

Section 7. Department of Education assistance. Requires a proposal for the statewide testing system to include disclosures containing:

  1. comprehensive information regarding test administration monitoring practices; and
  2. data privacy safeguards for student information to be transmitted to or used by the bidder.

Section 8. Database. Requires the commissioner to establish a reporting system for teachers, administrators, and students to report service disruptions and technical interruptions.

Section 9. Student performance data. Directs the commissioner to disaggregate student data over time to report summary student growth and student learning and outcome data.  Requires the commissioner to use student categories identified under the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), including ethnicity, race, home language, immigrant status, refugee status; English language learners, and free or reduced lunch.

Effective Date. Makes the section effective for the 2017-2018 school year and later.

Section 10. Test preparation costs.  Requires the department to collect and publish data on the expenditures by school district for preparation of all assessment administered under 120B.30.

Section 11. Student academic achievement and growth.

Subdivision 1. Student indicators of growth and achievement. Requires indicators of achievement and prior achievement to be based on summative, interim, or formative assessments.

Subdivision 2. Federal expectations for student academic achievement. Directs the commissioner to include aggregated and disaggregated student growth and student learning and outcome data available through the continuous improvement Web site.

Subdivision 3. State growth target; other state measures. Requires the state growth model established by the commissioner to allow users to compare aggregated and disaggregated student data used the student categories identified under the federal ESEA, and in addition to the Karen community, other student categories as determined by the total Minnesota population at or above the 1,000-person threshold based on the most recent decennial census.  Requires the same student categories to be used when reporting core measures indicated the extent to which high school graduates are being prepared for postsecondary academic and career opportunities and when reporting student performance.

Effective Date. Makes the section effective for the 2017-2018 school year and later.

Section 12. School accountability. Amends the commissioner’s report on student academic performance data to include the academic progress of all English learners who are currently or were previously counted as an English learner and on all students enrolled who are currently or were previously in foster care.

Effective Date. Makes the section effective for the 2017-2018 school year and later.

Section 13. School performance reports. Amends the commissioner’s report on student academic performance data to include the weekly amount of time students in kindergarten through grade 8 are schedule to spend in physical education class, the percent of students who receive a passing grade in physical education, and the number of required physical education credits high school students must complete to graduate.

Effective Date.  Makes the section effective immediately and applicable to reports for the 2017-2018 school year and later.

Section 14. Licensure via portfolio. Requires revenue generated by the licensure via portfolio fee to be deposited in an education licensure via portfolio account in the special revenue fund and is appropriated to the commissioner for licensure via portfolio expenditures.

Section 15. Basic alternative teacher compensation aid.  Lifts the cap on basic alternative teacher compensation aid.

Effective Date.  Makes the section effective immediately.

Section 16. Staff development revenue for school districts.  Clarifies that the reserved revenue is for school districts.

Effective Date. Makes the section effective for revenue for fiscal year 2017.

Section 17. Staff development aid for intermediate school districts and other cooperative units. Allows intermediate school districts or other cooperative units providing instruction to students in federal instructional settings of level 4 or higher to qualify for staff development aid.  Aid received must be used to enhance services to students who may have challenging behaviors or mental health issues or be suffering from trauma.

Effective Date. Makes the section effective for revenue for fiscal year 2017 and later.

Section 18.  Estalishment.  Allows the commissioner to award additional grants to prepare Indian teachers if additional funds are available.

Section 19. Agreement. Allows for an agreement to create a teacher-governed school.

Effective Date. Makes the section effective for fiscal year 2017 and later.

Section 20. Teacher-governed schools. Establishes a grant program to encourage licensed teachers at a school site to explore and develop teacher-governed schools.  Allows the commissioner to award planning and start-up grants on a first-come first-served basis.  Requires grant recipients to submit to the commissioner recommended best practices based on their experience.

Effective Date. Makes the section effective for fiscal year 2017 and later.

Section 21. Eligibility. Strikes an obsolete fiscal year reference.

Section 22. Aid; tuition reimbursement. Allows a school board and the teachers to agree to use up to 25 percent of the concurrent enrollment aid to offset tuition paid for coursework that secondary teachers need to meet requirements to teacher concurrent enrollment course.  Requires a teacher to repay the district if they do not complete the training.  Requires a teacher receiving a reimbursement equal to 50 percent or more of their tuition to continue to teach in the school district for two years after completing the training.

Section 23. Full-service community school program. Increases the annual award amount a school site may receive from $100,000 to $150,000.  Requires a site deciding not to use planning funds to submit their plan with the application. 

Section 24. English learner data. Requires English learner data to include all pupils who are currently or were previously counted as an English learner and the data to be disaggregated by currently counted and previously counted English learners.

Effective Date. Makes the section effective for the 2017-2018 school year and later.

Section 25. Student-user privacy in education rights.

Subdivision 1. Definitions. Defines the following terms “online educational service,” “operator,” “protected information,” “school purposes,” “student,” “vendor,” and “targeted advertising.”

Subdivision 2. Prohibited activities; targeted advertising; creation of student profiles; sale or unauthorized disclosure of information. Prohibits an operator from engaging in the following activities:

  1.      (i) targeted advertising on the operator’s online educational service; or

(ii) targeted advertising on any other site, service, or application;

  1. gather, use, or share information acquired or created by the operator’s online educational service, to create a profile about a student, except in furtherance of school purposes;

  2. sell a student’s information; or

  3. disclose protected information, unless the disclosure:

    1. is made in furtherance of the educational purpose of the site, service, or application;

    2. is legally required to comply with subdivision 3;

    3. is made to ensure legal and regulatory compliance;

    4. is for a school, educational, or employment purpose requested by the student; or

    5. is made pursuant to a contract between the operator and a service provider.

Subdivision 3. Security procedures and practices. Requires an operator to:

  1. implement and maintain reasonable security procedures and practices; and

  2. delete a student’s protected information within a reasonable period of time.

Subdivision 4. Permissible disclosures. Allows an operator to use or disclose protected student information under the following circumstances:

  1. if other provisions of federal or state law require the operator to disclose the information;

  2. for legitimate research purposes; and

  3. to a state or local educational agency for school purposes as permitted by state or federal law.

Subdivision 5. Use of information by operator. Clarifies that the section does not prohibit an operator from doing the following:

  1. using protected information within the operator’s site, service, or application;

  2. using protected information that is not associated with an identified student to demonstrate the effectiveness of the operator’s products or services;

  3. sharing aggregate information that does not directly or indirectly identify a student for the development and improvement of educational sites, services, or applications;

  4. using recommendation engines to recommend to a student either of the following:

     i. additional content; or

     ii. additional services; or

  1. responding to a student’s request for information or for feedback.

Subdivision 6. Certain activities not effected. States that the section does not limit the authority of a law enforcement agency to obtain information from an operator.  States that the section does not limit the ability of an operator to use student information for adaptive learning or customized student learning purposes.  States that the section does not apply to general audience Web site, services, applications, or mobile applications.  States that the section does not limit the ability of Internet service providers to provide connectivity to schools, students or their families.  Allows operators to market educational products to parents as long as it is not based on the use of protected information obtained through the provision of services covered by this section. 

Section 26. Grants to student teachers in shortage areas.  Directs the commissioner of the Office of Higher Education to establish a grant program for student teachers who, upon graduation, would be able to teacher in a Minnesota school district in a shortage area.

Section 27. Innovative delivery of education services and sharing of school or district resources; pilot project.

Subdivision 1. Establishment; requirements for participation. (a) Allows one or more school districts to work together or with postsecondary institutions or employers to:

  1. provide innovative education programs and activities consistent with the standard adult high school diploma or experiential and applied learning opportunities;

  2. conduct research with rigorous methodology on these innovative education programs and activities; and

  3. share district or school and other resources, with the goal of improving students’ career and college readiness.

(b) Requires interested groups to collaborate with school staff, postsecondary faculty, or employees to form a partnership, prepare a plan, and complete an application to participate in a pilot project.  Requires the plan evaluations to provide for a rigorous evaluation premised on returns on investment, program effectiveness, or beat-the-odds analysis and allows them to offer career and college readiness assessments or other interim assessments.

(c) Allows an interested partnership to structure its plan to do any of the following:

  1. reduce duplicative assessments identified as less useful for information instruction or diagnosing areas for targeted interventions;

  2. establish expectations for career and college readiness;

  3. use fully adaptive, on and off-grade assessments;

  4. provide students with predictive information;

  5. use career and college readiness assessments or other interim or formative assessments highly correlated with the Minnesota comprehensive assessments in reading and math;

  6. allow a student to use a course in applied math or STEM as an equivalent to algebra II; or

  7. include student assessment data in the district’s annual world’s best workforce report.

Allows a district or charter school to use alternative assessments in place of the Minnesota comprehensive assessments administered in high school.  Allows a school district or charter school to include certain students in the four-year graduation rate even though they are still participating in an innovative postsecondary program.  Allows for attendance to be taken only once per day.

(d) Requires the school district or charter school member of an interested partnership to submit an application to the commissioner. 

(f) Requires participating school districts and charter schools to submit a biennial evaluation in each odd-numbered year. 

Subdivision 2.  Commissioner’s role. Adds a researcher appointed by the Office of Higher Education and a researcher appointed by the University of Minnesota Educational Psychology Department to the panel that advises the commissioner on applications submitted for the approval.  Allows the commissioner to approve no more than two partnerships applying to conduct research using alternative measures in place of the Minnesota comprehensive assessments. 

Subdivision 3. Pilot project evaluation. Directs the commissioner to analyze data on participating districts’ and charter schools’ progress in realizing their goal and objectives.  Requires the commissioner to submit an interim report on March 30, 2019 and a final report on February 1, 2022.

Effective Date. Makes the section effective immediately and applicable to applications submitted after that date.  Allows districts with plans already approved to continue to operate under the law as it existed when they were approved.

Sections 28 to 37.  Appropriations.  See fiscal tracking sheets.

Section 38. College entrance examination reimbursement. Makes the appropriation available until October 1, 2017.  Limits the fiscal year 2016 reimbursement to ACT examination fees.

Section 39. Agricultural educator grants. Establishes a grant program to pay agricultural education teachers for work over the summer with high school students on extended projects.

Section 40. Excellence in teaching incentive grants.  Directs the Board of Teaching to award a onetime incentive grant of $2,000 to a teacher who achieves National Board Certification.

Section 41.  Outdoor place-based education advisory group.

Subdivision 1. Definitions. Defines “outdoor place-based education.”

Subdivision 2. Advisory group creation. Creates a 14-member advisory group.

Subdivision 3. Advisory group duties; report required. Directs the advisory group to develop recommendations for a statewide outdoor place-based education plan for students in prekindergarten through grade 12. Requires the report to include the following:

  1. recommended strategies for the integration of outdoor place-based education in each of the required academic standards subject areas;

  2. identify grades or grade ranges in which outdoor place-based education may have the greatest impact;

  3. recommend an assessment instrument that districts may use to evaluate the impact of outdoor place-based education; and

  4. estimate the financial and human resources required to implement the recommendations statewide.

Subdivision 4. Administrative provisions. Directs the commissioner of education to convene the first meeting by September 1, 2016, to provide meeting space, and administrative services for the group.  The group expires February 15, 2017 or upon submission of the report.

Effective Date. Makes the section effective immediately.

Section 42. Paraprofessional pathway to teacher licensure. Directs the commissioner to establish a grant program for school districts to provide a paraprofessional pathway to teacher licensure or a grow your own new teacher program.

Section 43. Support our students grant program.

Subdivision 1. Definitions. Defines “student support services personnel” and “new position.”

Subdivision 2. Purpose. Declares that the purpose of the grant program is to:

  1. address shortages of student support services personnel;

  2. decrease caseloads for existing student support services personnel;

  3. ensure that students receive effective academic guidance;

  4. ensure that student support services personnel serve within the scope and practice of their training and licensure;

  5. fully integrate learning supports, instruction, and school management; and

  6. improve school safety and school climate.

Subdivision 3. Grant eligibility and application. Allows a school district, charter school, intermediate school district, or other cooperative unit to apply for a six-year matching grant. 

Subdivision 4. Allowed uses; match requirements. Requires the grant to be used to hire a new position.  Requires a local match for each year of the grant. 

Subdivision 5. Report required. Requires a grant recipient to submit a report indicating how the new positions affected two or more of the following measures:

school climate;

  1. attendance rates;

  2. academic achievement;

  3. career and college readiness; and

  4. postsecondary completion rates.

Section 44. Teacher development and evaluation aid. Provides a formula for teacher development and evaluation aid for fiscal year 2017 for school districts, intermediate school districts, educational cooperatives, education districts, or charter schools with a school site that does not have an alternative professional pay system agreement.

Section 45. Appropriations.  See fiscal tracking sheets.

Article 3. Charter Schools.

Section 1. School closures. Requires a charter school board of directors to appoint, and the authorizer to approve, a school closure trustee upon the final decision to close a charter school. Requires certain qualifications of the trustee. Gives responsibility to the trustee for activating and executing the school closure plan, including activities relating to reporting and payments.  Entitles the trustee to immunity provided by common law, though not from illegal or criminal acts nor acts of malfeasance or misfeasance. Establishes a charter school closure fund at the Department of Education and authorizes certain fund management fees. Requires an annual report on the fund. Redirects a portion of charter school aids to fund the required balance. Authorizes a trustee to request distributions from the fund for certain expenditures related to closure of a charter school. Provides other policy related to charter school closures.

Section 2. Cash flow adjustment. Modifies the eligibility criteria for cash flow adjustment for certain charter schools. Provides that, according to the definition of “eligible special education charter school” under section 124E.21, subdivision 2, a charter school is eligible for cash flow adjustment if:

  1.  the percent of students eligible for special education services equals at least 90 percent of the charter school's total enrollment; and
  2. the school submits to the commissioner a preliminary annual budget by June 15 prior to the start of the fiscal year and a revised budget by January 15 of the current fiscal year detailing its unreimbursed costs for educating students eligible and not eligible for special education services.

Effective date: makes this section effective for revenue for fiscal year 2017 and later.

Section 3. Laws 2015 effective date. Amends a Laws 2015 effective date to allow a charter school with at least 90 percent of enrolled students who are eligible for special education services and have a primary disability of deaf or hard-of-hearing to enroll prekindergarten pupils with a disability under section 126C.05, subdivision 1, paragraph (a), even if the enrollment would increase state aids attributable to the pupil.

Effective date: makes this section effective immediately.

Section 4. Appropriations. See fiscal tracking sheets.

Article 4. Special Education.

Section 1. Individualized education programs.  Allows a school district to accept documentation from a licensed health provider within the scope of their practice, instead of only a physician, when making a determination of other health disability.

Section 2. Nonresident tuition rate; other costs. Clarifies the tuition billing process relating to costs for building lease and debt service that are billed to intermediate districts and cooperatives. Strikes obsolete language relating to reporting revenues and expenditures on the resident district’s accounts.  Clarifies that an intermediate district or cooperative may charge access fees and membership fees to recover unreimbursed costs of serving special education students. Requires intermediates and coops to provide an explanation of any access fees or membership fees that they charge. Strikes other obsolete language.

Section 3. Use of reimbursements. Clarifies that a district must reserve third-party revenue and provides allowable uses of third-party reimbursements.

Section 4. Special education aid. Directs the department to establish procedures through UFARS relating to tracking and reporting third-party billings.

Section 5. Definitions. Clarifies the calculation of “unreimbursed nonfederal special education expenditures” for the purposes of calculating special education aid.

Section 6. Alternative attendance programs. Clarifies the calculation of “unreimbursed cost of providing special education and services” for the purposes of calculating special education aid for resident and nonresident districts.

Section 7 & 8. Appropriations. See fiscal tracking sheets.

Article 5. Facilities and Technology.

Section 1. Equalized debt service levy. Modifies the calculation of equalized debt service levies. Provides that, beginning in fiscal year 2018, the equalizing factors for first and second tier equalized debt services levies annually adjust for changes in the total statewide adjusted net tax capacity per pupil unit.

Effective date: makes this section effective for taxes payable in 2017 and later.

Section 2. Enhanced debt service equalization. Provides that, for a district that consolidated on or after July 1, 2016, with an approved consolidation plat and plan under section 123A.48 that included building or remodeling school facilities, the district’s debt service equalization revenue is equalized at 300 percent of the statewide adjusted net tax capacity equalizing factor. (The adjusted net tax capacity equalizing factor equals the quotient derived by dividing the total adjusted net tax capacity of all school districts in the state for the year before the year the levy is certified by the total number of adjusted pupil units in the state for the year prior to the year the levy is certified.) Makes other technical and grammatical corrections.

Effective date: makes this section effective for taxes payable in 2017 and later.

Section 3. Long-term facilities maintenance revenue. Modifies the calculation of long-term facilities maintenance revenue to include costs approved by the commissioner for remodeling existing instructional space to accommodate prekindergarten instruction.

Effective date: makes this section effective for revenue in fiscal year 2017 and later.

Sections 4 & 6. Appropriations. See fiscal tracking sheets.

Section 5. Generation Connect aid. Provides a formula for generation connect aid for school districts and charter schools for fiscal year 2017 only. Provides that allowable uses for generation connect aid include any use otherwise allowable for operating capital revenue.

Article 6. Early Childhood Education.

Section 1. Home visiting revenue.  Modifies the home visiting levy program into a home visiting revenue program. Makes districts that are eligible to levy for early childhood family education eligible to receive home visiting revenue. Increases the amount for home visiting from $1.60 per person under five residing in the district to $3.00 per person under five residing in the district.

Effective date: makes this section effective for revenue in fiscal year 2018 and later.

Section 2. Home visiting levy.  Modifies the home visiting levy program by establishing an equalized levy based on adjusted net tax capacity per adjusted pupil unit.

Effective date: makes this section effective for revenue in fiscal year 2018 and later.

Section 3. Home visiting aid.  Provides home visiting aid according to the share of revenue provided by the home visiting levy.

Effective date: makes this section effective for revenue in fiscal year 2018 and later.

Section 4. Help Me Grow system.

Subdivision 1. Purpose. Provides that the purpose of the Help Me Grow system is to develop and implement a comprehensive, statewide, coordinated system of early identification, referral, and follow-up for children, prenatal through age eight, and their families.

Subdivision 2. Establishment and administration. Requires the commissioner of education to provide funding and work collaboratively through interagency agreements with the commissioners of human services and health to implement this section and maintain annual affiliate status with the Help Me Grow National Center.

Subdivision 3. Duties. Requires certain functions of the Help Me Grow system relating to early detection and intervention; connections between and to community-based services; community outreach to health care providers, early education providers and others; single-point access to services; and data collection and analysis.

Subdivision 4. Review. Directs the Department to annually review outcomes achieved by the system; alignment with overall early childhood goals and objectives; and impacts on young children.

Sections 5 & 6. Appropriations. See fiscal tracking sheets. 

Article 7. Self-sufficiency and Lifelong Learning.

Section 1. After-school community learning grants.

Subdivision 1. Grant program established. Establishes a grant program to support community-based organizations offering enrichment activities that promote youth development.

Subdivision 2. Application. Requires the commissioner to develop a grant application process and criteria.

Subdivision 3. Grant awards. Directs the commissioner to award grants equitably among geographic regions. Authorizes the commissioner to give priority to applicants that collaborate with and leverage existing community resources.

Section 2. Appropriations. See fiscal tracking sheets. 

Article 8. State Agencies.

Section 1. Regional centers of excellence. Requires the department to employ a literacy/dyslexia specialist at one regional center and a literacy/dyslexia specialist at the department to provide technical assistance and information relating to dyslexia and related disorders. Defines literacy/dyslexia specialist.

Effective date: makes this section effective for the 2016-2017 school year and later.

Section 2. Certificates of advanced professional study. Requires the Board of Teaching to adopt rules for approving certificates of advanced professional study to increase the availability of teachers qualified to teach in shortage areas or in disciplines for which full licenses or licensure programs do not exist in Minnesota.

Sections 3 & 5. Appropriations. See fiscal tracking sheets.

Section 4. System Redesign; Homeless Children Supports. Directs the Children’s Cabinet to create a plan for a cross-agency systems that provides support for a family that is homeless, especially with children up to four years of age, to access available services.

Article 9. Forecast Adjustments.

This article amends appropriations for forecasted programs for fiscal years 2016 and 2017 to conform with the February 2016 budget forecast.

 
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