Senate Bill No. 220
(By Senators Unger, Kessler, McCabe, Sprouse, Jenkins, Hunter and
[Introduced February 18, 2005; referred to the Committee on
Government Organization; and then to the Committee on Finance.]
A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by
adding thereto a new section, designated §18-7-4, relating to
the creation of the West Virginia Literacy Council.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended
by adding thereto a new section, designated §18-7-4, to read as
ARTICLE 7. ADULT LITERACY EDUCATION PROGRAM.
§18-7-4. West Virginia Literacy Council.
(a) The West Virginia Literacy Council is hereby created and
shall serve as the infrastructure through which individuals,
organizations and agencies, both public and private, having an
interest in achieving the goal that all working-age adults are
(b) The governor shall appoint, with the advice and consent of
the Senate, members to the council. The council may consist of no
more than twenty-five members, including ex officio members, who
are representative of volunteer literacy programs, adult basic
education and post-education programs, libraries, correctional
education facilities, family support programs, family resource
networks, employment programs, workforce development, workforce
training, economic development, literacy, education, business,
labor, government, other associated fields and citizens-at-large
within the state.
(c) The chairperson of the West Virginia educational
broadcasting authority or his or her designee, the executive
director of the West Virginia development office or his or her
designee, shall serve as ex officio members of the council.
(d) Initial terms for appointed members of the council are for
up to three years as determined by the governor. All subsequent
terms are for three years.
(e) The council shall designate from among its members persons
to serve as its chairperson, vice chairperson, secretary and
(f) The council shall meet at least quarterly or at such times
and places as set by its chairperson and appointed members of the
council may be reimbursed for reasonable expenses incurred within the scope of their service on the council.
(g) The council may create subcommittees to carry out any
business of the council.
(h) A majority of the members of the council or any
subcommittee of the council constitute a quorum for the purpose of
conducting the business of the council.
(i) The council shall:
(1) work to integrate planning and formalize coordination and
collaboration among adult literacy delivery systems in the state,
and facilitate the involvement of people and agencies statewide in
the formulation and implementation of adult literacy policies and
(2) provide information on the dimensions of the literacy
problem within West Virginia to serve as a baseline for measuring
progress toward meeting the goal of functional literacy for all
working-age adults and as a framework for setting priorities,
identifying gaps in service and targeting services to key
populations, industries, economic sectors and geographic areas;
(3) set priorities and performance expectations for all
programs funded by the council. Performance objectives should be
based on learner outcomes. Incentives should be offered to
encourage programs of high quality that are sustainable, that are
coordinated with other resources in the community and that encourage students to continue learning throughout their lifetimes,
including, but not limited to, activities to:
(A) promote professional development for instructors in the
adult learning systems;
(B) promote opportunities for lifelong learning through
scholarships and similar support for continued education and
(C) provide opportunities for the expansion and strengthening
of adult literacy programs that demonstrate effective practices;
(D) recognize and honor achievements of adult learners who
improve their literacy skills or businesses that promote lifelong
(4) coordinate efforts with public and private agencies to
develop reliable and consistent information on the availability and
quality of adult literacy programs and make this information
readily available to adult learners, employers and service
providers through the state's one-stop career center system;
(5) promote the development of programs that provide learning
within a real-life context, such as workplace literacy and family
literacy programs. The literacy effort should recognize the
diversity of individual abilities, skill levels, circumstances and
life goals, and should include efforts to enhance program access as well as a variety of instructional methods; and
(6) promote lifelong learning to maximize the potential of
both the individual and the state, and advocate for adequate
resources to support lifelong learning systems.
(j) The West Virginia department of education shall provide
administrative and other services to the council as the council
(k) The council shall report to the Governor, the legislative
oversight committee on education accountability, and the
legislative oversight commission on workforce investment for
economic development on or before the first day of October each
year on its progress toward achieving functional literacy for all
working-age adults in West Virginia, and shall make such
recommendations as it deems necessary to achieve this goal.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to create the West Virginia
This is an interim bill that was proposed for introduction in
the 2005 Legislative Session by the Legislative Oversight
Commission on Workforce Investment for Economic Development.
§18-7-4 is new; therefore, strike-throughs and underscoring
have been omitted.