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BILL AS PASSED BY HOUSE 2007-2008

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H.135

AN ACT RELATING TO INCREASING THE AGE FOR MANDATORY PARTICIPATION IN THE CORRECTIONS SYSTEM EDUCATION PROGRAM

It is hereby enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:

Sec. 1.  28 V.S.A. § 120 is amended to read:

§ 120.  CORRECTIONS DEPARTMENT EDUCATION PROGRAM

COMMUNITY HIGH SCHOOL OF VERMONT; INDEPENDENT

SCHOOL

(a)  Authority. An education program is established There is created within the department of corrections an independent school to be known as the community high school of Vermont for the education of persons who have not completed secondary education and who are committed to the custody of the commissioner of corrections.

(b)  Applicability of education provisions.  The education program community high school shall be approved subject to approval by the state board of education as an independent school under 16 V.S.A. § 166,.  In addition, the school shall comply with the :

(1)  meet school quality standards provided by 16 V.S.A. § 165,;

(2)  offer a minimum course of study as defined in 16 V.S.A. § 906 at each correctional facility and department service center, except that it shall not be required to offer physical education; and shall

(3)  be coordinated with adult education, special education, and technical education services provided by other agencies or school districts funded by the state or federal government.

(c)  Program supervision.

(b)  The commissioner of corrections shall appoint an education supervisor, who shall be licensed as an administrator under 16 V.S.A. chapter 51, to coordinate and supervise the education program community high school of Vermont and coordinate use of other education programs by persons under the supervision of the commissioner.

(d)  Curriculum. The education program shall offer a minimum course of study, as defined in 16 V.S.A. § 906, at each correctional facility and department service center, but is not required to offer a driver training course or a physical educational course.

(e)  Commissioner of education’s designation of special education program. Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, the

(c)  The commissioner of education, in accordance with the provisions of 16 V.S.A. chapter 101 shall designate a program to provide for the special education of eligible persons who are under the custody of the commissioner of corrections.  Within the limits of funds made available for this specific purpose, the commissioner of education shall pay the costs of this program in excess of costs defined in subsection (g) of this section.  Within the limits of funds made available for this specific purpose, the commissioner of education shall pay the costs of this program in excess of costs defined in subsection (d) of this section.

(f)  Reimbursement payments.  The provision of 16 V.S.A. § 4012, relating to payment for state-placed students, shall not apply to the corrections education program.

(g)  Annual budget.

(d)  Annually there shall be appropriated to the department the commissioner of corrections shall request that the general assembly appropriate an amount equal to the number of full-time equivalent students enrolled in the corrections department education program community high school of Vermont, multiplied by the average statewide per‑pupil cost of public school education in the preceding year.  That average cost shall be calculated to exclude debt service and transportation costs.  The annual appropriation shall be used to provide educational services to students enrolled in the community high school of Vermont. 

(h)  Required participation. 

(e)  All persons under the custody of the commissioner of corrections who are under the age of 23 26 and have not received a high school diploma shall participate in the an education program, unless exempted by the commissioner, as follows:

(1)  those who are younger than 22 years of age shall attend the community high school of Vermont;

(2)  those who are 22 years of age or older and who are incarcerated in a Vermont facility shall attend the community high school of Vermont;

(3)  those who are 22 years of age or older and who are not incarcerated shall either attend the community high school of Vermont or participate in another education program upon approval by the commissioner; and

(4)  those who are 22 years of age or older and who are incarcerated in a facility outside Vermont shall participate in an education program, approved by the commissioner, which is available at the facility.

Sec. 2.  COMMUNITY HIGH SCHOOL OF VERMONT; SPECIAL EDUCATION; STUDY

On or before January 15, 2009, the commissioner of education and the commissioner of corrections shall report to the house and senate committees on education, the senate committee on judiciary, and the house committee on institutions and corrections regarding information gathered from the community high school of Vermont, and recommendations for future legislation.  The report shall include a description of the pupils served, current funding mechanisms, and a proposed funding mechanism to meet the general and special education needs of the pupils.



Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont


www.leg.state.vt.us