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Committee Substitute House Bill 2160 History

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COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE

FOR

H. B. 2160


(By Delegate Ashcraft )


(Originating in the House Committee on Education)


[February 25, 1993]


A BILL to amend article five, chapter eighteen of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, by adding thereto a new section, designated section fourteen; and to amend and reenact sections two, three, five and six, article five-a of said chapter, all relating to board, faculty, parental and community participation in schools; requiring county boards to adopt enumerated policies; providing for election of members to local school improvement councils; delineating certain duties of principal as chair of such council; deleting language relating to faculty senate proposal to waive state and county board interpretations; changing date for submission of report of faculty senate proposals; requiring attendance at certain faculty senate meetings; extending school curriculum teams to each school; and including science and technology as basic skills.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That article five, chapter eighteen of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, beamended by adding thereto a new section, designated section fourteen; and that sections two, three, five and six, article five-a of said chapter be amended and reenacted, all to read as follows:
ARTICLE 5. COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION.

§18-5-14. Policies to promote school board effectiveness.

Prior to the first day of August, one thousand nine hundred ninety-four, each county board of education in this state shall adopt, and may modify thereafter as necessary, county board policies that:
(a) Establish direct links between the board and its local school improvement councils, and between the board and its faculty senates, for the purpose of enabling the board to receive information, comments and suggestions directly from the councils and senates regarding the broad guidelines for oversight procedures, standards of accountability and planning for future needs required by this section;
(b) Provide for the development of direct links between the board and the community-at-large; allow for community involvement at regular board meetings; and specify how the board will regularly communicate with the public regarding important issues;
(c) Provide for the periodic review of personnel policies of the district in order to determine their effectiveness;
(d) Set broad guidelines for the school district, including the establishment of specific oversight procedures, development and implementation of standards of accountability, and the development of long-range plans to meet future needs required by this section; and
(e) Adopt a policy that aims to use school-based accreditation and performance data provided by the state board in board decision-making.
ARTICLE 5A. LOCAL SCHOOL INVOLVEMENT.
§18-5A-2. Local school improvement councils; election.

A local school improvement council shall be established at every school consisting of the principal, who shall serve as the ex officio chairman of the council and be entitled to vote, three teachers elected by the faculty senate of the school, two school service personnel elected by the school service personnel employed at the school, three parents or legal guardians of students enrolled at the school elected by the school's parent teacher organization, and two at-large members appointed by the principal, one of whom resides in the school's attendance area and one of whom represents business or industry, both of whom are not eligible for membership under any of the other elected classes of members and in the case of vocational-technical schools, the vocational director, or if there is no vocational director then the principal, may appoint no more than two additional representatives, one of whom represents business and one of whom represents industry: Provided, That if the school houses students in grade seven or higher, then the student body president or other student, elected by the student body in grade seven or higher, shall also be a member of the council.
(a) A local school improvement council shall be established at every school and shall consist of the following:
(1) The principal, who shall serve as the ex officio chairman of the council and be entitled to vote;
(2) Three teachers elected by the faculty senate of the school;
(3) Two school service personnel elected by the school service personnel employed at the school;
(4) Three parents or legal guardians of students enrolled at the school elected by the parent members of the school's parent teacher organization:
Provided, That if there is no parent teacher organization, the parent or legal guardian members shall be elected by the parents and legal guardians of students enrolled at the school in such manner as may be determined by the principal;
(5) Two at-large members appointed by the principal, one of whom resides in the school's attendance area and one of whom represents business or industry, both of whom are not eligible for membership under any of the other elected classes of members;
(6) In the case of vocational-technical schools, the vocational director:
Provided, That if there is no vocational director, then the principal may appoint no more than two additional representatives, one of whom represents business and one of whom represents industry;
(7) In the case of a school with students in grade seven or higher, the student body president or other student in grade seven or higher elected by the student body in those grades.
(b) The principal shall arrange for such elections to be held prior to the tenth day of May fifteenth day of September of each school year to elect a council to serve for the next ensuing school year and shall give notice of the elections at least one week prior to the elections being held. To the extent practical,all elections shall be held within the same week. Persons Parents, teachers, and service personnel elected to the council shall serve until the next election and a two-year term, and elections shall be arranged in such a manner that no more than two teachers, no more than two parents or legal guardians, and no more than one service personnel are elected in a given year. All other non-ex-officio members shall serve one-year terms. Council members may only be replaced upon death, resignation, failure to appear at three consecutive meetings of the council for which notice was given, or a change in personal circumstances so that the person is no longer representative of the class of members from which appointed. In the case of replacement, an election shall be held to elect another qualified person to serve the unexpired term of the person being replaced.
(c) Each member of the school improvement council must be given written notice by the principal two employment days in advance of any council meeting.
School improvement councils shall meet at least once every nine weeks or equivalent grading period at the call of the chair principal or by three fourths of its members. At the first meeting of the council, the chair principal shall provide each member with a copy of the current applicable section of this code and any state board rule or regulation promulgated pursuant to the operation of these councils, and the council shall elect from its membership two members to assist the chair principal in setting the agenda for each council meeting.
(d) School improvement councils shall be considered for the receipt of school of excellence awards under section three ofthis article and competitive grant awards under section twenty- nine, article two of this chapter, and may receive and expend such grants for the purposes provided in such section.
In any and all matters which may fall within the scope of both the school improvement councils and the school curriculum teams authorized in section five of this article, the school curriculum teams shall be deemed to have jurisdiction.
A school improvement council, in order to promote innovations and improvements in the teaching and learning environment at the school, shall receive cooperation from the school in implementing policies and programs it may adopt to:
(1) Encourage the involvement of parents in their child's educational process and in the school;
(2) Encourage businesses to provide time for their employees who are parents to meet with teachers concerning their child's education;
(3) Encourage advice and suggestions from the business community;
(4) Encourage school volunteer programs and mentorship programs; and
(5) Foster utilization of the school facilities and grounds for public community activities.
§18-5A-3. Authority and procedures for local school improvement councils to request waivers of certain rules, policies and interpretations.

The intent of this section is to establish a mechanism which allows local school level initiatives to be designed and implemented to meet local school needs and circumstances. Inaccordance with this intent, a local school improvement council established under the provisions of this article may propose alternatives to the operation of the public school which alternatives will meet or exceed the high quality standards established by the state board and will increase administrative efficiency, enhance the delivery of instructional programs, promote community involvement in the local school system or improve the educational performance of the school generally. The proposal of the council shall set forth the objective or objectives to be accomplished under the proposal, how the accomplishment of such objective or objectives will meet or exceed the standards established by the state board, the indicators upon which the meeting of such standards should be judged and a projection of any funds to be saved by the proposal and how such funds will be reallocated within the school. The alternatives proposed by the council may include matters which require the waiver of policies or rules promulgated by the state or county board of education, and/or state superintendent interpretations and interpretations of the county or state boards of education:
Provided, That such request for waiver be submitted to the appropriate board adopting said rule or policy and that board may approve the waiver: Provided, however, That the state superintendent need only be notified that the local council intends to waive the interpretation: Provided further, That notwithstanding any other provisions of the law to the contrary, council is not prohibited from permitting off-site classrooms to be developed in conjunction with local businesses if those sites have met the requirements established by the local board ofeducation and if sites are located off campus. For an alternative to be proposed, at least two-thirds of the members must vote in favor thereof: And provided further, That if the alternative to be proposed relates to a waiver of policies or rules, promulgated by the state or county board of education, and/or state superintendent interpretations and interpretations of the county or state boards of education affecting employees, then prior to the proposal of the alternative, a majority of the local affected employee group involved must agree.
A council may also submit a written statement, with supporting reasons, to the legislative oversight commission on education accountability recommending a waiver of a statute or legislative rule, which the commission shall review and determine whether a recommendation should be made to the Legislature to waive such statute or rule.
When a council decides to propose an alternative, it shall forward a copy of the proposal to the state board of education. and the affected local board of education. The state board shall acknowledge receipt of the proposed alternative, promptly review the proposed alternative in consultation with the county board or their agents and, in its discretion, approve implementation of the alternative or reply to the council within a reasonable time as to its reasons for not approving the proposed alternative. If the state board approves a proposed alternative, the state board shall provide appropriate notice to the local school improvement council and the county board of education and shall establish a process for evaluation of the operation of the alternative. Approval for the operation of the alternative may be continued orrevoked at any time based on the results and findings of the evaluation.
The state board shall submit a report to the legislative oversight commission on education accountability and the governor on the first day of July January of each year summarizing the proposed alternatives received, approved or rejected, continued or revoked during the preceding school year and the results and findings of the evaluations. The report shall specifically identify all policy, rule, and interpretation waiver requests received during the preceding year and the disposition of each.
§18-5A-5. Public school faculty senates established; election of officers; powers and duties.

(a) There is established at every public school in this state a faculty senate which shall be comprised of all permanent, full-time professional educators employed at the school who shall all be voting members. Professional educators as used in this section means professional educators as defined in chapter eighteen-a of this code. A quorum of more than one half of the voting members of the faculty shall be present at any meeting of the faculty senate at which official business is conducted. Prior to the beginning of the instructional term each year, but within the employment term, the principal shall convene a meeting of the faculty senate to elect a chair, vice chair and secretary and discuss matters relevant to the beginning of the school year. The vice chair shall preside at meetings when the chair is absent. Meetings of the faculty senate shall be held on a regular basis as determined by a schedule approved by the faculty senate and amended from time to time if needed. Emergencymeetings may be held at the call of the chair or a majority of the voting members by petition submitted to the chair and vice chair. All professional personnel shall attend faculty senate meetings held during the regular school day unless otherwise assigned or excused by the principal of the school. An agenda of matters to be considered at a scheduled meeting of the faculty senate shall be available to the members at least two employment days prior to the meeting, and in the case of emergency meetings, as soon as possible prior to the meeting. The chair of the faculty senate may appoint such committees as may be desirable to study and submit recommendations to the full faculty senate, but the acts of the faculty senate shall be voted upon by the full body.
(b) In addition to any other powers and duties conferred by law, or authorized by policies adopted by the state or county board of education or bylaws which may be adopted by the faculty senate not inconsistent with law, the powers and duties listed in this subsection are specifically reserved for the faculty senate. The intent of these provisions is neither to restrict nor to require the activities of every faculty senate to the enumerated items except as otherwise stated. Each faculty senate shall organize its activities as it deems most effective and efficient based on school size, departmental structure and other relevant factors.
(1) Each faculty senate shall control funds allocated to the school from legislative appropriations pursuant to section nine, article nine-a of this chapter. From such funds, each classroom teacher and librarian shall be allotted fifty dollars forexpenditure during the instructional year for academic materials, supplies or equipment which in the judgment of the teacher or librarian will assist him or her in providing instruction in his or her assigned academic subjects, or shall be returned to the faculty senate:
Provided, That nothing contained herein shall prohibit such funds from being used for programs and materials that, in the opinion of the teacher, enhance student behavior, increase academic achievement, improve self-esteem and address the problems of students at-risk. The remainder of funds shall be expended for academic materials, supplies or equipment in accordance with a budget approved by the faculty senate. Notwithstanding any other provisions of the law to the contrary, funds not expended in one school year shall be available for expenditure in the next school year: Provided, however, That the amount of county funds budgeted in a fiscal year, shall not be reduced throughout the year as a result of the faculty appropriations in the same fiscal year for such materials, supplies and equipment. Accounts shall be maintained of the allocations and expenditures of such funds for the purpose of financial audit. Academic materials, supplies or equipment shall be interpreted broadly, but shall not include materials, supplies or equipment which will be used in or connected with interscholastic athletic events.
(2) A faculty senate may establish a process for faculty members to interview new prospective professional educators and paraprofessional employees at the school and submit recommendations regarding employment to the principal, who may also make independent recommendations, for submission to thecounty superintendent:
Provided, That such process must permit the timely employment of persons to perform necessary duties.
(3) A faculty senate may nominate teachers for recognition as outstanding teachers under state and local teacher recognition programs and other personnel at the school, including parents, for recognition under other appropriate recognition programs and may establish such programs for operation at the school.
(4) A faculty senate may submit recommendations to the principal regarding the assignment scheduling of secretaries, clerks, aides and paraprofessionals at the school.
(5) A faculty senate may submit recommendations to the principal regarding establishment of the master curriculum schedule for the next ensuing school year.
(6) A faculty senate may establish a process for the review and comment on sabbatical leave requests submitted by employees at the school pursuant to section eleven, article two of this chapter.
(7) Each faculty senate shall elect three faculty representatives to the local school improvement council established pursuant to section two of this article.
(8) Each faculty senate may nominate a member for election to the county staff development council pursuant to section eight, article three, chapter eighteen-a of this code.
(9) Each faculty senate shall have an opportunity to make recommendations on the selection of faculty to serve as mentors for beginning teachers under beginning teacher internship programs at the school.
(10) A faculty senate may solicit, accept and expend anygrants, gifts, bequests, donations and any other funds made available to the faculty senate:
Provided, That the faculty senate shall select a member who shall have the duty of maintaining a record of all funds received and expended by the faculty senate, which record shall be kept in the school office and shall be subject to normal auditing procedures.
(11) On or after the first day of January, one thousand nine hundred ninety-two, any faculty senate may review the evaluation procedure as conducted in their school to ascertain whether such evaluations were conducted in accordance with the written system required pursuant to section twelve, article two, chapter eighteen-a of this code and the general intent of this Legislature regarding meaningful performance evaluations of school personnel. If a majority of members of the faculty senate determine that such evaluations were not so conducted, they shall submit a report in writing to the state board of education:
Provided, That nothing herein shall create any new right of access to or review of any individual's evaluations.
(12) Each faculty senate shall be provided by its local board of education at least a two-hour per month block of noninstructional time within the school day:
Provided, That any such designated day shall constitute a full instructional day. This time may be utilized and determined at the local school level and shall include, but not be limited to, faculty senate meetings.
§18-5A-6. Establishment of school curriculum teams.

There shall be established at each elementary school in the state a school curriculum team composed of the school principal,the counselor designated to serve that school and no less than three teachers representative of the grades taught at the school and from the kindergarten through fourth grade faculty chosen by that the faculty senate.
The school curriculum team shall establish the programs and methods for implementing a curriculum based on state-approved learning outcomes instructional goals and objectives for kindergarten through fourth and grade based on the needs of the individual school with a focus on the basic skills of reading, composition, and mathematics, science and technology. The curriculum thus established shall be submitted to the county board of education for approval or for return to the school for reconsideration.
The school curriculum team may apply through the school's local school improvement council for a waiver from the textbook adoption process established in article two-a, of this chapter if, in the judgment of the team, materials necessary for the implementation of such curriculum are not available through the normal adoption process.
The school team may apply for a grant from the state board of education for the development or implementation, or both, of remedial and accelerated programs to meet the needs of the students at the individual school.
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