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Engrossed Version Senate Bill 249 History

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SB249 SUB2 eng
ENGROSSED

COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE

FOR

COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE

FOR


Senate Bill No. 249

(By Senators Tomblin (Mr. President) and Caruth, By Request of the Executive)

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[Originating in the Committee on Finance;

reported March 20, 2009.]

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A BILL to amend and reenact §18-5-45 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended; and to amend and reenact §18-5A-5 of said code, all relating to the annual school calendar; eliminating instructional support and enhancement days; replacing the earliest starting date and the latest ending date for the instructional term with the requirement that the instructional term begin so that students receive two full weeks of instruction prior to Labor Day; encouraging the first half of the instructional term to end on or before December 23; requiring at least three of certain noninstructional days be scheduled prior to the beginning of the instructional term; requiring all six out-of-school environment days be scheduled after February 1; changing the earliest dates a county can use noninstructional days and accrued instructional time to make up canceled instructional days; requiring uniform method of cancellation notification; providing that certain cancelled instructional days be considered out-of-calendar days and requiring those days to be rescheduled; applying the 43-week limit on the beginning and ending dates of the minimum two hundred-day employment term to professional personnel and service personnel; and providing for faculty senate meetings during specified months.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That §18-5-45 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted; and that §18-5A-5 of said code be amended and reenacted, all to read as follows:
ARTICLE 5. COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION.
§18-5-45. School calendar.

(a) As used in this section, the following terms have the following meanings:
(1) "Instructional day" means a day within the instructional term which meets the following criteria:
(A) Instruction is offered to students for at least the minimum amounts of time provided by state board rule;
(B) Instructional time is used for instruction, cocurricular activities and approved extracurricular activities and, pursuant to the provisions of subdivision (12), subsection (b), section five, article five-a of this chapter, faculty senates; and
(C) Such Any other criteria as the state board determines appropriate.
(2) "Accrued instructional time" means instructional time accruing during the instructional term from time added to the instructional day beyond the time required by state board rule for an instructional day. Accrued instructional time may be accumulated and used in larger blocks of time during the school year for instructional or noninstructional activities as further defined by the state board.
(3) "Extracurricular activities" are activities under the supervision of the school such as athletics, noninstructional assemblies, social programs, entertainment and other similar activities as further defined by the state board.
(4) "Cocurricular activities" are activities that are closely related to identifiable academic programs or areas of study that serve to complement academic curricula as further defined by the state board.
(b) Findings. --
(1) The primary purpose of the school system is to provide instruction for students.
(2) The school calendar, as defined in this section, is designed to define the school term both for employees and for instruction.
(3) The school calendar traditionally has provided for one hundred eighty actual days of instruction but numerous circumstances have combined to cause the actual number of instructional days to be less than one hundred eighty.
(4) The quality and amount of instruction offered during the instructional term is affected by the extracurricular and cocurricular activities allowed to occur during scheduled instructional time.
(5) Within reasonable guidelines, the school calendar should be designed at least to guarantee that one hundred eighty actual days of instruction are possible.
(c) The county board shall provide a school term for its schools that contains the following:
(1) An employment term for teachers of no less than two hundred days, exclusive of Saturdays and Sundays; and
(2) Within the employment term, an instructional term for students of no less than one hundred eighty separate instructional days.
(d) The instructional term for students shall include one instructional day in each of the months of October, December, February, April and June which is an instructional support and enhancement day scheduled by the board to include both instructional activities for students and professional activities for teachers to improve student instruction. Instructional support and enhancement days are subject to the following provisions:
(1) Two hours of the instructional support and enhancement day shall be used for instructional activities for students. The instructional activities for students are subject to the following provisions:
(A) The instructional activities for students require the direct supervision or involvement by teachers;
(B) The instructional activities for students shall be limited to two hours;
(C) The instructional activities for students shall be determined and scheduled at the local school level;
(D) The instructional activities for students may include, but are not limited to, both in-school and outside of school activities such as student mentoring, tutoring, counseling, student research and other projects or activities of an instructional nature, community service, career exploration, parent and teacher conferences, visits to the homes of students, college and financial aid workshops and college visits;
(E) To ensure that the students who attend are properly supervised, the instructional activities for students shall be arranged by appointment with the individual school through the principal, a teacher or other professional personnel at the school; and
(F) Each school shall establish a policy relating to the use of the two-hour block scheduled for instructional activities for students;
(2) The instructional support and enhancement day shall include a two-hour block of time for professional activities for teachers during which the faculty Senate shall have the opportunity to meet;
(3) All time remaining in the school day after meeting the requirements of subdivisions (1) and (2) of this subsection, not including the duty-free lunch period, shall be used for other professional activities for teachers to improve student instruction which may include, but are not limited to, professional staff development, curriculum team meetings, individualized education plan meetings and other meetings between teachers, principals, aides and paraprofessionals to improve student instruction as determined and scheduled at the local school level;
(4) Notwithstanding any other provision of law or policy to the contrary, the presence of any specific number of students in attendance at the school for any specific period of time shall not be required on instructional support and enhancement days and the transportation of students to the school shall not be required;
(5) Instructional support and enhancement days are also a scheduled work day for all service personnel and shall be used for training or other tasks related to their job classification if their normal duties are not required; and
(6) Nothing in this section may be construed to require that the instructional activities for students, faculty Senate meetings and other professional activities for teachers be scheduled in any certain order.
(d) The instructional term shall begin so that students will receive two full weeks of instruction prior to Labor Day. The Legislature finds that finishing the first semester before Christmas break is beneficial to the education of students. Therefore, county boards are encouraged to schedule the first half of the instructional term to terminate on or before December 23.
(f) (e) Noninstructional days shall total twenty and shall be comprised of the following:
(1) Seven holidays as specified in section two, article five, chapter eighteen-a of this code;
(2) Election day as specified in section two, article five, chapter eighteen-a of this code;
(3) Six days to be designated by the county board to be used by the employees outside the school environment; and
(4) Six days to be designated by the county board for any of the following purposes:
(A) Curriculum development;
(B) Preparation for opening and closing school;
(C) Professional development;
(D) Teacher-pupil-parent conferences;
(E) Professional meetings; and
(F) Making up days when instruction was scheduled, but not conducted.
(g)(f) At least three of the days described in subdivision (4), subsection (f) (e) of this section shall be scheduled prior to the twenty sixth day of August beginning of the instructional term for the purposes of preparing for the opening of school and staff development.
(h) (g) At least one of the days described in subdivision (4), subsection (f) (e) of this section shall be scheduled after the eighth day of June the last day of the instructional term for the purpose of preparing for the closing of school. If one hundred eighty separate instruction days occur prior to the eighth day of June, this day may be scheduled on or before the eighth day of June.
(i) (h) At least four six of the days described in subdivision (3), subsection (f) (e) of this section shall be scheduled after March February 1.
(j) (i) At least two of the days described in subdivision (4), subsection (f) (e) of this section will shall be scheduled for professional development. The professional development conducted on these days will shall be consistent with the goals established by the state board pursuant to the provisions of section twenty- three-a, article two of this chapter.
(k) (j) Subject to the provisions of subsection (h) (g) of this section, all noninstructional days will shall be scheduled prior to the eighth day of June the last day of the instructional term.
(l) (k) The state board may not schedule the primary statewide assessment program prior to May 15 of the instructional year unless the state board determines that the nature of the test mandates an earlier testing date.
(m) (l) If, on or after March 1 February 1, the county board determines that it is not possible to complete one hundred eighty separate days of instruction, the county board shall schedule instruction on any available noninstructional day, regardless of the purpose for which the day originally was scheduled, and the day will be used for instruction, subject to the following:
(1) The noninstructional days scheduled for professional development shall be the last available noninstructional days to be rescheduled as instructional days;
(2) On or after March 1 February 1, the county board also may require additional minutes of instruction in the school day to make up for lost instructional days in excess of the days available through rescheduling, and if in its judgment it is reasonable and necessary to improve student performance, to avoid scheduling instruction on noninstructional days previously scheduled for professional development; and
(3) The provisions of this subsection do not apply to:
(1) Holidays; and
(2) Election day.
(n) (m) The following applies to accrued instructional time:
(1) Except as provided in subsection (m) (l) of this section, accrued instructional time may not be used to avoid one hundred eighty separate days of instruction;
(2) Accrued instructional time may not be used to lengthen the time provided in law for faculty senates;
(3) The use of accrued instructional time for extracurricular activities will shall be limited by the state board;
(4) Accrued instructional time may be used by schools and counties to provide additional time for professional staff development and continuing education as may be needed to improve student performance and meet the requirements of the federal mandates affecting elementary and secondary education. The amount of accrued instructional time used for this purpose may not exceed three instructional days; and
(5) Other requirements or restrictions the state board may provide in the rule required to be promulgated by this section.
(o) (n) The following applies to cocurricular activities:
(1) The state board shall determine what activities may be considered cocurricular;
(2) The state board shall determine the amount of instructional time that may be consumed by cocurricular activities; and
(3) Other The state board may specify other requirements or restrictions the state board may provide in the rule required to be promulgated by this section.
(p) (o) The following applies to extracurricular activities:
(1) Except as provided by subdivision (3) of this subsection, extracurricular activities may not be scheduled during instructional time;
(2) The use of accrued instructional time for extracurricular activities will shall be limited by the state board; and
(3) The state board shall provide for the attendance by students of certain activities sanctioned by the Secondary School Activities Commission when those activities are related to statewide tournaments or playoffs or are programs required for Secondary School Activities Commission approval.
(q) (p) Noninstructional interruptions to the instructional day shall be minimized to allow the classroom teacher to teach.
(r) (q) Nothing in this section prohibits establishing year- round schools in accordance with rules to be established by the state board.
(s) (r) Prior to implementing the school calendar, the county board shall secure approval of its proposed calendar from the state board or if so designated by the state board, from the state superintendent if designated by the state board.
(t) (s) The county board may contract with all or part of the personnel for a longer term.
(u) (t) The minimum instructional term may be decreased by order of the state superintendent in any county declared a federal disaster area and where the event causing the declaration is substantially related to a reduction of instructional days.
(v) (u) Where the employment term overlaps a teacher's or service personnel's participation in a summer institute or institution of higher education for the purpose of advancement or professional growth, the teacher or service personnel may substitute, with the approval of the county superintendent, the participation for up to five of the noninstructional days of the employment term.
(w) (v) The state board shall promulgate a rule in accordance with the provisions of article three-b, chapter twenty-nine-a of this code for the purpose of implementing the provisions of this section. Additionally, the rule shall prescribe a uniform method for all districts to notify students and school personnel of an instructional day cancellation.
(w) If an instructional day is cancelled before 4:30 a. m.:
(1) Except for any essential school personnel as determined by the county board and except for any school personnel whose normally scheduled work hours begin before 4:30 a. m., employees shall not report to work on that day;
(2) The day is not considered an instructional day;
(3) The day is considered an out-of-calendar day and is not considered part of the minimum two hundred-day employment term;
(4)
The day shall be rescheduled as an instructional day on any available noninstructional day if any noninstructional days are available. If no noninstructional days are available, the day shall be rescheduled as an instructional day and as a day to be considered part of the minimum two hundred-day employment term on a later day that was not originally scheduled to be part of the minimum two hundred-day employment term ; and
(5) The school personnel who do not report to work on an instructional day cancelled before 4:30 a. m. pursuant to this subsection shall continue to be paid their normal rate of pay in accordance with the established pay period schedule.

(x) The beginning and ending dates of the minimum two hundred- day employment term may not exceed forty-three weeks.

ARTICLE 5A. LOCAL SCHOOL INVOLVEMENT.
§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 is 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 during the times provided in accordance with subdivision (12), subsection (b) of this section as determined by the faculty senate. Emergency meetings may be held during noninstructional time at the call of the chair or a majority of the voting members by petition submitted to the chair and vice chair. 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. For emergency meetings the agenda shall be available as soon as possible prior to the meeting. The chair of the faculty senate may appoint such any committees as may be desirable necessary 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 determines 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 those funds, each classroom teacher and librarian shall be allotted fifty dollars for expenditure 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 in this subdivision prohibits the 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 are available for expenditure in the next school year: Provided, however, That the amount of county funds budgeted in a fiscal year may not be reduced throughout the year as a result of the faculty appropriations in the same fiscal year for such the materials, supplies and equipment. Accounts shall be maintained of the allocations and expenditures of such the funds for the purpose of financial audit. Academic materials, supplies or equipment shall be interpreted broadly, but does 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 also may also make independent recommendations for submission to the county superintendent: Provided, That such the process shall be chaired by the school principal and 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 appropriate recognition 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 any grants, gifts, bequests, donations and any other funds made available to the faculty senate: Provided, That the faculty senate shall select a member who has the duty of maintaining a record of all funds received and expended by the faculty senate. which The record shall be kept in the school office and is subject to normal auditing procedures.
(11) Any faculty senate may review the evaluation procedure as conducted in their its school to ascertain whether the 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 the evaluations were not so conducted, they shall submit a report in writing to the state board: of education Provided, That nothing herein in this subdivision creates any new right of access to or review of any individual's evaluations.
(12) A local county board shall provide to each faculty senate a two-hour block of time for a faculty senate meeting on a day scheduled for the opening of school prior to the beginning of the instructional term and a two-hour block of time on each instructional support and enhancement day scheduled by the board for instructional activities for students and professional activities for teachers pursuant to section forty-five, article five of this chapter during an instructional day in each of the months of September, November, January, March and May. A faculty senate may meet for an unlimited block of time per month during noninstructional days to discuss and plan strategies to improve student instruction and to conduct other faculty senate business. A faculty senate meeting scheduled on a noninstructional day shall be considered as part of the purpose for which the noninstructional day is scheduled. This time may be utilized used and determined at the local school level and includes, but is not limited to, faculty senate meetings.
(13) Each faculty senate shall develop a strategic plan to manage the integration of special needs students into the regular classroom at their respective schools and submit the strategic plan to the superintendent of the county board of education periodically pursuant to guidelines developed by the State Department of Education. Each faculty senate shall encourage the participation of local school improvement councils, parents and the community at large in developing the strategic plan for each school.
Each strategic plan developed by the faculty senate shall include at least: (A) A mission statement; (B) goals; (C) needs; (D) objectives and activities to implement plans relating to each goal; (E) work in progress to implement the strategic plan; (F) guidelines for placing additional staff into integrated classrooms to meet the needs of exceptional needs students without diminishing the services rendered to the other students in integrated classrooms; (G) guidelines for implementation of collaborative planning and instruction; and (H) training for all regular classroom teachers who serve students with exceptional needs in integrated classrooms.
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