AN ACT RELATING TO MISCELLANEOUS CHANGES TO EDUCATION LAW
The Senate proposes to the House to amend the bill as follows:
First: In Sec. 16, in the catchline, by striking out the word “POSTPARTUM” and inserting in lieu thereof the word: PARENTING and in subsection (a) by striking out the word: “postpartum” and inserting in lieu thereof the word parenting
Second: In Sec. 16, subsection (c), after the words “A school district shall pay” by inserting the words: up to and by striking out the word: “postpartum” and inserting in lieu thereof the word: parenting
Third: In Sec. 22, by adding four new subsections to be lettered (e), (f), (g), and (h) to read as follows:
(e) The commissioner of education shall work with Vermont educators and the state board of education to study the quality of Vermont public schools and independent schools which receive public funds and to study and analyze methods to reduce costs. On or before January 30, 2007, the commissioner shall deliver the results of the analysis and recommendations for legislative action to the senate and house committees on education.
(f) On or before January 30, 2007, the commissioner of education shall report to the senate and house committees on education regarding recommendations, if any, for amendments to Title 16 provisions addressing school district auditing requirements, including the frequency and scope. In developing the recommendations, the commissioner shall confer with the state auditor of accounts and with representatives of the Vermont association of school business officials, the Vermont superintendents association, and the Vermont school boards association.
(g) The commissioner of education shall consult with high school principals and other appropriate people to consider whether the scholastic aptitude test or the American college test should be used to assess student academic progress in the high school grades. On or before January 30, 2007, the commissioner shall report to the senate and house committees on education as to whether either or both of the tests should be used as a statewide assessment.
(h) The commissioner of education shall gather information which will facilitate discussion during the next legislative session about increasing the compulsory education age to 18, and present the data to the senate and house committees on education during January, 2007. Information gathered shall include the number of young people who have dropped out of school in each of the last 10 years, the types of facilities and programs that are available to help young people at risk of not completing school to obtain a high school diploma or its equivalent, costs of services alternative to the public school system, and other information which will inform the discussion.
Fourth: By adding three new sections to be numbered Secs. 24, 25, and 26 to read as follows:
Sec. 24. 16 V.S.A. § 2963a(a) is amended to read:
(a) The commissioner of education, in place of reimbursement under section 2963 of this title, shall reimburse a school district for 80 percent of the following expenditures:
(1) costs not eligible for reimbursement under section 2962 of this title for each student causing the school district to be eligible for extraordinary services reimbursement pursuant to that section. However, in order for a school district to be eligible for reimbursement under this section, the total costs of the district eligible for extraordinary services reimbursement must equal or exceed 15 percent of the total costs eligible for state assistance under sections 2961, 2962, and 2963 of this title; and
the costs incurred by the school district in placing and maintaining a student
in a program operated by the Vermont Center for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.
such expenditures do not include costs incurred for up to two such students by
a school district with an average daily membership of fewer than 1,000 and for
up to three such students by a school district with an average daily membership
of 1,000 or greater.
Sec. 25. REPEAL EXTENSION
16 V.S.A. § 711b shall remain in effect until July 1, 2008, notwithstanding the provisions of Sec. 15(4) of No. 130 of the Acts of the 2003 Adj. Sess. (2004) which repeals the section effective July 1, 2006.
Sec. 26. 16 V.S.A. § 15 is added to read:
§ 15. COUNCIL ON CIVICS EDUCATION
(a) The commissioner of education or designee shall convene and chair a council on civics education to strengthen civics education opportunities for all Vermonters.
(b) The council shall consist of the secretary of state or designee and one person chosen by each of the following organizations: the Vermont league of women voters, the Vermont bar association, the Vermont humanities council, the Vermont principals association, the Snelling Center for Government, a teacher from the Vermont alliance for social studies, a teacher from the Vermont national education association, the Vermont school boards association, and the Vermont superintendents association. Any interested member of the house or senate committee on education may attend council meetings as a nonvoting member.
(c) The council shall:
(1) continually assess the status of civics education in Vermont schools at all education levels, including higher education;
(2) make recommendations to enhance civics education;
(3) make recommendations regarding benefits of increasing civics coordination services at the state house;
(4) maintain an inventory of civics and service education opportunities available for Vermont students;
(5) assess and recommend best practices in civics education;
(6) build and maintain a network of civics education professionals to share information and strengthen partnerships;
(7) support and help coordinate an alignment of civics education curricula at all education levels, including higher education;
(8) prepare an annual report of its activities.
Fifth: By striking out Secs. 4 and 18 in their entirety, renumbering the sections of the bill to be numerically correct, and in the old Sec. 24(a) by striking out the following: “Sec. 16(c)” and inserting in lieu thereof the following: Sec. 15(c)
The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street