Senate Bill No. 221
(By Senators Beach, Kessler (Mr. President), Miller and Stollings)
[Introduced January 17, 2012; referred to the Committee on Education.]
A BILL to amend and reenact §18A-3A-2 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, relating to providing routine education of all professional educators and those school service personnel having direct contact with students on suicide prevention by Center for Professional Development; providing for state board guidelines; and providing for delivery options.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That §18A-3A-2 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted to read as follows:
ARTICLE 3A. CENTER FOR PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT.
§18A-3A-2. Professional development project.
Subject to the provisions of section twenty-three-a, article two, chapter eighteen of this code, through this project the center shall:
(1) Identify, coordinate, arrange and otherwise assist in the delivery of professional development programs and activities that help professional educators acquire the knowledge, skills, attitudes, practices and other such pertinent complements deemed essential for an individual to demonstrate appropriate performance as a professional personnel in the public schools of West Virginia. The basis for such performance shall be the laws, policies and regulations adopted for the public schools of West Virginia, and amendments thereto. The center also may permit and encourage school personnel such as classroom aides, higher education teacher education faculty and higher education faculty in programs such as articulated tech prep associate degree and other programs to participate in appropriate professional development programs and activities with public school professional educators;
(2) Identify, coordinate, arrange and otherwise assist in the delivery of professional development programs and activities that help principals and administrators acquire knowledge, skills, attitudes and practices in academic leadership and management principles for principals and administrators and such other pertinent complements deemed essential for principals and administrators to demonstrate appropriate performance in the public schools of West Virginia. The basis for such performance shall be the laws, policies and regulations adopted for the public schools of West Virginia, and amendments thereto;
(3) Serve in a coordinating capacity to assure that the knowledge, skills, attitude and other pertinent complements of appropriate professional performance which evolve over time in the public school environment are appropriately reflected in the programs approved for the education of professional personnel, including, but not limited to, advising the teacher education programs of major statutory and policy changes in the public schools which affect the job performance requirements of professional educators, including principals and administrators;
(4) Provide for the routine updating of professional skills of professional educators, including principals and administrators, through in-service and other programs. Such routine updating may be provided by the center through statewide or regional institutes which may require a registration fee;
(5) Provide for the routine education of all professional educators, including principals and administrators, and those school service personnel having direct contact with students on warning signs and resources to assist in suicide prevention under guidelines established by the state board. The education may be accomplished through self-review of suicide prevention materials and resources approved by the state board. The provisions of this paragraph may be known and cited as the “Jason Flatt Act of 2012”;
(5) (6) Provide consultation and assistance to county staff development councils established under the provisions of section eight, article three of this chapter in planning, designing, coordinating, arranging for and delivering professional development programs to meet the needs of the professional educators of their district. From legislative appropriations to the center for professional development, exclusive of such amounts required for the expenses of the principals academy, the center shall, unless otherwise directed by the Legislature, provide assistance in the delivery of programs and activities to meet the expressed needs of the school districts for professional development to help teachers, principals and administrators demonstrate appropriate performance based on the laws, policies and regulations adopted for the public schools of West Virginia; and
(6) (7) Cooperate and coordinate with the institutions of higher education to provide professional staff development programs that satisfy some or all of the criteria necessary for currently certified professional educators to meet the requirements for an additional endorsement in an area of certification and for certification to teach in the middle school grades.
If the center is not able to reach agreement with the representatives of the institutions providing teacher education programs on which courses will be approved for credit toward additional endorsements, the state board may certify certain professional staff development courses to meet criteria required by the state board. This certification shall be done on a course by course basis.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to require routine suicide prevention training for all teachers and principals.
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.