SB1 SFA #1 Prezioso 1-22
Senators Prezioso, Facemire, Ihlenfeld, Palumbo, Plymale, Stollings and Unger move to amend the bill as follows:
On page two, section six, line sixteen after the word “Schools,” by inserting the following: “Chancellor of the Higher Education Policy Commission,”;
On page seven, section eleven, by striking out all of section eleven and inserting in lieu thereof a new section, designated section eleven, to read as follows:
§18-2E-11. Advanced Career Education.
(a) The Legislature hereby makes the following findings:
(1) Preparing West Virginia students to achieve post-secondary career education and to excel in the workforce is a responsibility shared among all state education agencies and institutions. The state’s education agencies and institutions can fulfill this responsibility by establishing partnerships that enable students to attain advanced career education and valuable workforce skills in a more efficient and advantageous manner;
(2) The formation of partnerships between public secondary schools, four-year colleges and universities that offer occupational associate degrees, and community and technical colleges which establish advanced career education programs would ensure that a full range of community and technical college programs and services are provided in all areas of the state;
(3) Programs which create clear and efficient pathways that begin during secondary education and lead to obtaining advanced certifications and occupational associate degrees will increase the number of students that ultimately obtain a post-secondary credential or degree; and
(4) West Virginia’s economic prosperity is directly tied to the level and quality of its workforce career education. Providing the students of this state with increased access to career education will not only improve the general well-being of its citizens, but greatly enhance the economic prosperity of the state.
(b) The purpose of this section and the Advanced Career Education (ACE) programs authorized herein is to connect secondary schools with both four-year colleges and universities that offer associate degrees and community and technical colleges to accomplish the following:
(1) Prepare secondary students for success in post-secondary education and the workforce; and
(2) Provide more opportunities for secondary students to earn post-secondary college credits, certifications, and occupational associate degrees.
(c) To effectuate the purposes set forth in §18-2E-11(b) of this code, four-year colleges and universities that offer occupational associate degrees, community and technical colleges and the career technical education centers, county boards of education, shall establish partnerships that provide for ACE programs which feature defined pathways that begin when a student is in secondary education and that ultimately lead to an occupational associate degrees awarded by four-year colleges and universities that offer associate degrees or community and technical colleges and advanced certifications. ACE programs shall be equally available to public, nonpublic, and homeschool students.
(d) ACE programs shall include pathways that consist of a curriculum of courses leading to advanced certifications or an occupational associate degree that have been deemed to satisfy a workforce need as determined by the Department of Commerce. The Department of Commerce shall, on occasion, but at least annually, provide written notification to the State Board of Education, the Higher Education Policy Commission, and the West Virginia Council for Community and Technical College Education a determination of areas of workforce need within the state.
(e) The State Superintendent of Schools, the Chancellor of the Higher Education Policy Commission, or their designees, and the Chancellor of the Council for Community and Technical College Education, or their designees, shall facilitate the ACE programs. At a minimum, an ACE program shall satisfy the following objectives:
(1) Provide additional opportunities to students in this state to attain advanced certifications and occupational college credentials through ACE pathways;
(2) Increase the number of students in this state that attain advanced certifications and occupational college credentials through ACE pathways;
(3) Allow students in this state to attain advanced certifications and occupational college credentials through ACE pathways at little or no cost;
(4) Ensure that ACE pathways provide a clear roadmap to the courses and requirements necessary to attain advanced certifications and occupational college credentials; and
(5) Ensure that course requirements within ACE pathways are not duplicated.
(f) The board, commission, and council shall jointly promulgate guidelines for the administration of ACE programs and pathways, which must be affirmatively adopted by the board, commission, and the council. At a minimum, such guidelines shall provide for the following:
(1) That ACE program partnerships established between four-year colleges and universities that offer associate degrees, community and technical colleges and career technical education centers and county boards of education shall be reduced to written partnership agreements;
(2) The information required to be contained within partnership agreements;
(3) That ACE programs and pathways must meet the requirements of the accrediting entity for the four-year college or university that offers occupational associate degrees or the community and technical college awarding the applied associate degrees or advanced certificates;
(4) That partnership agreements shall be approved by the State Superintendent of Schools, the Chancellor of the Higher Education Policy Commission, or their designees, and the Chancellor for the Council for Community and Technical College Education, as applicable; and
(5) Any other provisions necessary to effectuate the purposes of this section.
(g) The Division of Vocational Education and the council shall maintain and annually report to the Governor and the Legislative Oversight Commission on Education Accountability the following information about ACE programs:
(1) The identity and number of partnership agreements;
(2) The ACE programs and pathways that are being utilized by career technical education centers, county boards of education, four-year colleges or universities that offer occupational associate degrees, and community and technical colleges; and
(3) The nature and number of degrees and certifications awarded to students participating in ACE programs by each four-year college or university that offers occupational associate degrees, and community and technical college and career technical education center.;
As used in this article:
“Applied Associate Degree” means an associate of applied science degree in which not more than 21 credit hours of the required curriculum consists of general education core courses.
“Commission” means the Higher Education Policy Commission;
“Council” means the West Virginia Council for Community and Technical College Education;
“Eligible institution” means a four-year college or university that offers associate degrees under the authority of the Higher Education Policy Commission and public community and technical college institution under the authority of the West Virginia Council for Community and Technical College Education satisfying the requirements of participating in Advanced Career Education (ACE) program partnerships in accordance with §18-2E-11 of this code;
“Eligible post-secondary program” means a curriculum of courses leading to a certificate or associate degree at an eligible institution which satisfies a course of study that has been deemed to satisfy a workforce need as determined by the Department of Commerce in accordance with §18-2E-11(d) of this code. “Eligible post-secondary program” does not include any certificate or associate degree created by an eligible institution after the effective date of this section;
“Qualifying Tuition” means such tuition charges as are charged to a student enrolled in an eligible post-secondary program at an eligible institution and are charged due to enrollment in courses which are required for the completion of the eligible post-secondary program, consistent with the published academic curriculum of the eligible institution. Under no circumstances shall enrollment by an otherwise eligible student in more than a total of 21 credit hours of general education core or other courses which are designated for mandatory transfer of credits among state institutions of higher education qualify for qualifying tuition; and
“Tuition” means the semester or term charges imposed by an eligible institution and, additionally, all mandatory fees required as a condition of enrollment by all students.;
On page fifteen, section four, by striking out all of section four and inserting in lieu thereof a new section, designated section four, to read as follows:
§18C-9-4. WV Invests Grant Program.
(a) There is hereby created a grant program known as the WV Invests Grant Program, which shall be administered by the vice chancellor for administration and the commission in accordance with this article.
(b) The council or commission shall award WV Invests Grants pursuant to the following terms and conditions:
(1) A WV Invests Grant may only be awarded to applicants satisfying the requirements provided in §18C-9-5 of this code;
(2) The maximum amount of a WV Invests Grant shall be the cost of tuition charged to all students for coursework leading to completion of the chosen applied associate degree or certificate, less all other state and federal scholarships and grants for which the student is eligible. All other state and federal scholarships and grants for which the grant recipient is eligible shall be deducted from the amount of the WV Invests Grant for each individual student;
(3) Grant payments shall be made directly to the eligible institutions;
(4) If a grant recipient transfers from one eligible institution to another, the grant is transferable only with approval of the vice chancellor for administration;
(5) A WV Invests Grant may be used at any eligible institution to seek an applied associate degree or certificate in an eligible post-secondary program. An institution is not required to accept a grant recipient for enrollment and may enforce its own admission requirements, standards, and policies; and
(6) If a WV Invests Grant recipient terminates enrollment for any reason during the academic year, the unused portion of the grant shall be returned by the institution to the council or commission, as applicable, in accordance with the council’s or commission’s policy for issuing refunds. The council or the commission shall transfer such funds to the WV Invests Fund for allocation and expenditure.
(c) On or before January 1 of each year, the council and the commission shall provide to the Legislature and the Governor a report on the WV Invests Grant Program, which shall include, but not be limited to, research and data concerning student success and grant retention.
(d) The council and the commission shall propose legislative rules for legislative approval pursuant to §29A-3A-1 et seq. of this code to implement the provisions of this article, which shall provide for:
(1) Application requirements and deadlines including provisions which enforce the limitations upon eligibility established in this article;
(2) Appeal procedures for the denial or revocation of the grant; and
(3) Any other provisions necessary to effectuate the purposes of this article.
(e) The Legislature hereby declares that an emergency situation exists and, therefore, the council and the commission may establish, by emergency rule, under the procedures of §29A-3A-1 et seq. of this code, a rule to implement the provisions of this article.
(f) Beginning with the 2021 fiscal year, and for every fiscal year thereafter, any appropriation by the Legislature to support and or alleviate the cost to citizens in this state to obtain advanced certifications and applied associate degrees shall only be distributed to those community and technical colleges or four-year colleges or universities that offer occupational associate degrees that form one or more partnerships to establish ACE programs and pathways. Once distributed, such funds may be used to support any program or pathway leading to the award of an applied associate degree or certification.;
On page twenty, section six, line twelve, after the word “administration” by inserting the word “or commission”.