number, nomination and election of members.
Each county school district shall be under the supervision and control of a county board of education, which shall be composed of five members, nominated and elected by the voters of the respective county without reference to political party affiliation. No more than two members shall be elected from the same magisterial district.
(1) Shall be a citizen and resident in the county in which he or she serves on the county board. Also, a person who is a candidate for membership on a county board or who is a member-elect of a county board shall be a citizen and resident in the county in which he or she seeks to serve on the county board;
(2) May not be employed by the county board on which he or she serves, including employment as a teacher or service person;
(3) May not engage in the following political activities:
(A) Become a candidate for or hold any other public office, other than to succeed him or herself as a member of a county board subject to the following:
(i) A candidate for a county board, who is not currently serving on a county board, may hold another public office while a candidate if he or she resigns from the other public office prior to taking the oath of office as a county board member.
(ii) The term "public office" as used in this section does not include service on any other board, elected or appointed, profit or nonprofit, under the following conditions:
(I) The person does not receive compensation; and
(II) The primary scope of the board is not related to public schools.
(B) Become a candidate for, or serve as, an elected member of any political party executive committee;
(C) Become a candidate for, or serve as, a delegate, alternate or proxy to a national political party convention;
(D) Solicit or receive political contributions to support the election of, or to retire the campaign debt of, any candidate for partisan office;
(4) May engage in any or all of the following political activities:
(A) Make campaign contributions to partisan or bipartisan candidates;
(B) Attend political fund raisers for partisan or bipartisan candidates;
(C) Serve as an unpaid volunteer on a partisan campaign;
(D) Politically endorse any candidate in a partisan or bipartisan election; or
(E) Attend a county, state or national political party convention.
(b) A member or member-elect of a county board, or a person desiring to become a member of a county board, may make a written request to the West Virginia Ethics Commission for an advisory opinion to determine if another elected or appointed position held or sought by the person is an office or public office which would bar service on a county board pursuant to subsection (a) of this section.
(1) Within thirty days of receipt of the request, the Ethics Commission shall issue a written advisory opinion in response to the request and also shall publish the opinion in a manner which, to the fullest extent possible, does not reveal the identity of the person making the request.
(2) A county board member who relies in good faith upon an advisory opinion issued by the West Virginia Ethics Commission to the effect that holding a particular office or public office is not a bar from membership on a county board and against whom proceedings are subsequently brought for removal from the county board on the basis of holding that office or offices is entitled to reimbursement by the county board for reasonable attorney's fees and court costs incurred by the member in defending against these proceedings, regardless of the outcome of the proceedings.
(3) A vote cast by the member at a meeting of the county board may not be invalidated due to a subsequent finding that holding the particular office or public office is a bar to membership on the county board.
(4) Good faith reliance on a written advisory opinion of the West Virginia Ethics Commission that a particular office or public office is not a bar to membership on a county board is an absolute defense to any civil suit or criminal prosecution arising from any proper action taken within the scope of membership on the county board, becoming a member-elect of the county board or seeking election to the county board.
(c) To be eligible for election or appointment as a member of a county board, a person shall possess at least a high school diploma or a general educational development (GED) diploma. This provision does not apply to members or members-elect who have taken office prior to May 5, 1992, and who serve continuously from that date forward.
(d) A person elected to a county board after July 1, 1990, may not assume the duties of county board member unless he or she has first attended and completed a course of orientation relating to boardsmanship and governance effectiveness which shall be given between the date of election and the beginning of the member's term of office under the following conditions:
(1) A portion or portions of subsequent training such as that offered in orientation may be provided to members after they have commenced their term of office;
(2) Attendance at the session of orientation given between the date of election and the beginning of the member's term of office permits the member-elect to assume the duties of county board member, as specified in this section;
(3) Members appointed to the county board shall attend and complete the next orientation course offered following their appointment; and
(4) The provisions of this subsection relating to orientation do not apply to members who have taken office prior to July 1, 1988, and who serve continuously from that date forward.
(e) Annually, each member of a county board shall receive seven clock hours of training in areas relating to boardsmanship, governance effectiveness, and school performance issues including, but not limited to, pertinent state and federal statutes such as the "Process for Improving Education" set forth in section five, article two-e of this chapter and the "No Child Left Behind Act" and their respective administrative rules.
(1) The orientation and training shall be approved by the state board and conducted by the West Virginia School Board Association or other organization or organizations approved by the state board:
(A) The state board may exclude time spent in training on school performance issues from the requisite seven hours herein required; and
(B) If the state board elects to exclude time spent in training on school performance issues from the requisite seven hours, the state board shall limit the training to a feasible and practicable amount of time.
(2) Failure to attend and complete the approved course of orientation and training relating to boardsmanship and governance effectiveness without good cause as determined by the state board by duly promulgated legislative rules constitutes neglect of duty under section seven, article six, chapter six of this code.
(f) In the final year of any four-year term of office, a member shall satisfy the annual training requirement before January 1. Failure to comply with the training requirements of this section without good cause as defined by the state board by duly promulgated legislative rules constitutes neglect of duty under section seven, article six, chapter six of this code.
(g) The state board shall appoint a committee named the "county board member training standards review committee" whose members shall meet at least annually. Subject to state board approval, the committee shall determine which particular trainings and training organizations shall be approved and whether county board members have satisfied the annual training requirement. Members of the committee serve without compensation, but may be reimbursed by their agencies or employers for all reasonable and necessary expenses actually incurred in the performance of their duties under this subsection.
As the terms of county school board members who presently hold office expire, members shall be elected for four-year terms at the time of each regular primary election commencing with the year one thousand nine hundred ninety. The terms of such members shall begin on the first day of July next following the primary election at which they were elected.
The term of office of any member of any county board of education shall immediately cease, and a vacancy shall exist, upon occurrence of ineligibility as prescribed in section one-a of this article.
This section shall in no manner be construed so as to affect the unexpired terms of county school board members who hold office or were elected under prior existing law.
(b) Annually, each county board shall assess its own performance using an instrument approved by the state board. In developing or making determinations on approving evaluation instruments, the state board may consult with the West Virginia school board association or other appropriate organizations. The evaluation instrument selected shall focus on the effectiveness of the county board in the following areas:
(1) Dealing with its various constituency groups and with the general public;
(2) Providing a proper framework and the governance strategies necessary to monitor and approve student achievement on a continuing basis; and
(3) Enhancing the effective utilization of the policy approach to governance.
At the conclusion of the evaluation, the county board shall make available to the public a summary of the evaluation, including areas in which the board concludes improvement is warranted.
(a) The board shall, by appointment, fill within forty-five days any vacancy that occurs in its membership. In the event that the board does not fill the vacancy within forty-five days, the state superintendent of schools shall appoint a person to fill the vacancy.
(b) (1) When the vacancy occurs after the eighty-fourth day before a general election, and the affected term of office ends on the thirtieth day of June following the next primary election, the person appointed to fill the vacancy shall continue in office until the completion of the term.
(2) When the vacancy occurs after the eighty-fourth day before a general election and not later than the close of candidate filing for the next succeeding primary election, and the affected term of office does not end on the thirtieth day of June following the next primary election, an election for the unexpired term shall be held at the next primary election, and the appointment shall continue until the thirtieth day of June following the primary election with the duly elected and certified successor taking office on the first day of July following the primary election and serving until the expiration of the original term of office.
(3) When the vacancy occurs after the close of candidate filing for the primary election and not later than eighty-four days before the general election, the vacancy shall be filled by election in the general election, and the appointment shall continue until a successor is elected and certified.
(a) The county board shall meet upon the dates provided by law, and at any other times the county board fixes upon its records. Subject to adequate public notice, nothing in this section prohibits the county board from conducting regular meetings in facilities within the county other than the county board office. At any meeting as authorized in this section and in compliance with the provisions of chapter eighteen-a of this code, the county board may employ qualified teachers, or those who will qualify by the time they enter upon their duties, necessary to fill existing or anticipated vacancies for the current or next ensuing school year. Meetings of the county board shall be held in compliance with the provisions of chapter eighteen-a of this code for purposes relating to the assignment, transfer, termination and dismissal of teachers and other school employees.
(b) Special meetings may be called by the president or any three members, but no business may be transacted other than that designated in the call.
(c) In addition, a public hearing shall be held concerning the preliminary operating budget for the next fiscal year not fewer than ten days after the budget has been made available to the public for inspection and within a reasonable time prior to the submission of the budget to the state board for approval. Reasonable time shall be granted at the hearing to any person who wishes to speak regarding any part of the budget. Notice of the hearing shall be published as a Class I legal advertisement in compliance with the provisions of article three, chapter fifty-nine of this code.
(d) A majority of the members of the county board is the quorum necessary for the transaction of official business.
(e) Board members may receive compensation at a rate not to exceed $160 per meeting attended, but they may not receive pay for more than fifty meetings in any one fiscal year. Board members who serve on an administrative council of a multicounty vocational center also may receive compensation for attending up to twelve meetings of the council at the same rate as for meetings of the county board. Meetings of the council are not counted as board meetings for purposes of determining the limit on compensable board meetings.
(f) Members also shall be paid, upon the presentation of an itemized sworn statement, for all necessary traveling expenses, including all authorized meetings, incurred on official business, at the order of the county board.
(g) When, by a majority vote of its members, a county board considers it a matter of public interest, the county board may join the West Virginia School Board Association and the National School Board Association and may pay the dues prescribed by the associations and approved by action of the respective county boards. Membership dues and actual traveling expenses incurred by board members for attending meetings of the West Virginia School Board Association may be paid by their respective county boards out of funds available to meet actual expenses of the members, but no allowance may be made except upon sworn itemized statements.
The board according to law and the intent of the instrument conferring title, shall receive, hold and dispose of any gift, grant or bequest.
All public school property used for school purposes shall be exempt from execution or other process, and free from lien or distress for taxes or municipal, county or state levies.
(b) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (a) of this section, in rural communities, the grantor of the lands or his or her heirs or assigns has the right to purchase at the sale, the land, exclusive of the buildings on the land and the mineral rights, at the same price for which it was originally sold: Provided, That the sale to the board was not a voluntary arms length transaction for valuable consideration approximating the fair market value of the property at the time of the sale to the board: Provided, however, That the provisions of this section may not operate to invalidate any provision of the deed to the contrary.
(c) The county board, by the same method set forth in subsection (a) of this section for the sale of school buildings and lands, may, in lieu of offering the property for sale, enter into a lease for oil or gas or other minerals any lands or school sites owned in fee by it. The proceeds of the sales and rentals shall be placed to the credit of the fund or funds of the district as the county board may direct.
(d) The county board may make any sale of property subject to the provision that all liability for hazards associated with the premises are to be assumed by the purchaser. In any sale by the county board of improved property in which the actual consideration is less than ten thousand dollars or in any sale of unimproved property in which the actual consideration is less than one thousand dollars, the county board shall make any sale of property subject to the provision that all liability for hazards associated with the premises are to be assumed by the purchaser. The county board shall inform any prospective purchaser of known or suspected hazards associated with the property.
(e) Except as provided by the provisions of subsection (b) of this section, where a county board determines that any school property is no longer needed for school purposes, the county board may, upon determining that it will serve the best interests of the school system and the community, offer the property for lease. The procedure set forth in subsection (a) of this section relating to sale of school buildings and lands shall apply to leasing the school property. Any lease authorized by the provisions of this subsection shall be in writing. The writing shall include a recitation of all known or reasonably suspected hazards associated with the property, an assumption by the lessee of all liability related to all hazards, whether disclosed or not, and provisions wherein the lessee assumes all liability for any actions arising from the property during the term of the lease.
(f) Notwithstanding any provision of this section to the contrary, the provisions of this section concerning sale or lease at public auction may not apply to a county board selling, leasing or otherwise disposing of its property for a public use to the state of West Virginia, or its political subdivisions, including county commissions, for an adequate consideration without considering alone the present commercial or market value of the property.
(1) Sell, dismantle, remove or relocate any buildings thereon;
(2) Contract with the United States of America, or any instrumentality, agency or political subdivision thereof, for the sale or exchange of its interest in the land or any part thereof; and
(3) Without auction sell or exchange its interest in the land or any part thereof to the United States of America, or any instrumentality, agency or political subdivision thereof, in accordance with the terms and provisions of the contract.
(b) If the flood control project is proposed in a county where the state board of education has intervened in the operation of the county school system pursuant to the provisions of section five, article two-e of this chapter or any other constitutional or statutory authority to intervene, the powers granted in this section are vested in the state board.
(c) Notwithstanding the provisions of section seven of this article, neither the grantor of the land or any part thereof nor his heirs or assigns has the right to purchase the land or any part thereof or have any other rights whatever under section seven of this article.
If, in the sound judgment of the board, the needs of the community require the use of property not needed for school purposes, for charitable, economic development or other community use, notwithstanding the provisions of section seven of this article, the board may convey by deed or by lease, for nominal consideration, to a private, nonprofit, tax-exempt organization, such tax-exempt status having been granted by the Internal Revenue Service under the provisions of 26 United States code section 501 (c) (3) through (8) inclusive, (19) or (23), upon such terms and conditions as will permit title to revert to the board if the organization is dissolved or ceases to use the property for the intended purpose within the first five years of such conveyance: Provided, That such reversion provision shall be subordinated to such extent as may be required solely in order to obtain a loan for the purpose of improving the property. In any absolute conveyance under this section, the transfer shall be subject to the provisions that all liability for hazards associated with the premises are to be assumed by the recipient. The board shall inform any prospective donee of known or suspected hazards associated with the property.
The board may petition the circuit court to condemn such lands, or easements in such lands, necessary or convenient for educational purposes for school buildings, playgrounds, athletic fields, experiments in agriculture, warehouses, bus garages, or extensions, improvements, or additions thereto. The rights, powers, and privileges of eminent domain in a board shall be coextensive with the rights, powers, and privileges of the state.
Condemnation proceedings shall be in the name of the board and according to the provisions of chapter fifty-four of the code.
(1) By purchase, lease, building or otherwise, a sufficient number of suitable schoolhouses and other buildings to meet the educational needs of its district;
(2) The necessary furniture, fixtures, apparatus, fuel and all necessary supplies for the schools;
(3) For the health and cleanliness of the pupils;
(4) For the repair and good order of the school grounds, buildings and equipment.
The board may also provide for medical and dental clinics.
By the fifteenth day of August, one thousand nine hundred ninety-five, the board shall implement the integrated pest management program promulgated under rules by the department of agriculture under authority of section four, article sixteen-a, chapter nineteen of this code.
(a) The boards of two or more adjoining counties may jointly establish and maintain schools. The title to the school shall be vested in the board of the county in which the school is located. The agreement by which the school is established shall be reduced to writing and entered of record in the minutes of each board.
(b) The boards of the several districts shall determine the site of the proposed school and the amount to be expended for its establishment and equipment.
(1) The participating counties shall enter a formal agreement regarding the manner in which the cost for the acquisition of the property and equipment shall be apportioned.
(2) The board in the district in which the building is located shall be vested with the control and management of the school, except as may otherwise be provided in the agreement between the counties.
(c) The annual operating costs shall be the responsibility of the county in which the joint school is located and subject to the allowance transfer set forth in section fourteen, article nine-a of this chapter unless otherwise provided in the agreement between the counties..
(d) For a county board that sends students to a jointly established school in another county and that provides transportation for those students or that otherwise contributes to the support services or instructional program of the school, the net enrollment of the county for the purposes of calculating its basic foundation program as provided in article nine-a of this chapter, only, shall be increased by fifteen one hundredths multiplied by the number of full-time equivalent students from the county who are enrolled in the jointly established school.
(a) The Legislature finds that many examples exist across the state of students who reside in one county, but who attend the public schools in an adjoining county.
(1) These arrangements have been accommodated by the boards of the adjoining counties and applicable statutes to serve best the interests of the students by enabling them to attend a school closer to their homes.
(2) Typically, these arrangements have evolved because school closures or construction of new schools in the student's county of residence have made a cross-county transfer to an existing school in an adjoining county a more convenient, practical and educationally sound option.
(b) The Legislature further finds that as population changes continue to occur, the boards of adjoining counties may best serve the interests of their students and families by establishing a new school in partnership to be attended by students residing in each of the counties. Particularly in the case of elementary grade level schools established in partnership between adjoining counties, the Legislature finds that each of the county boards, as well as the parents of students from each of the counties attending the school, have an interest in the operation of the school and the preparation of the students for success as they transition to the higher grade levels in the other schools of their respective home counties. Therefore, in the absence of a well defined governance structure that accommodates these interests, the purpose of this section is to provide for a joint governing partnership board pilot initiative.
(c) The pilot initiative is limited to the joint establishment by two adjoining counties of a school including elementary grade levels for which a memorandum of understanding on the governance and operation of the school has been signed. The pilot initiative is subject to amendment of the agreement as may be necessary to incorporate at least the following features of a joint governing partnership board:
(1) The joint governing partnership board is comprised of the county superintendent of each county, the president of the county board of each county or his or her designee, and a designee of the state superintendent;
(2) The board shall elect a chair from among its membership for a two-year term and may meet monthly or at the call of the chair.
(A) Meetings of the board are subject to the open governmental proceedings laws applicable to county boards.
(B) The boards of the respective counties are responsible for the expenses of its members and shall apportion other operational expenses of the board upon mutual agreement.
(C) Once the jointly established school is opened, the meetings of the board shall be held at the school.
(3) All provisions of law applicable to the establishment, operation and management of an inter-county school including, but not limited to, section eleven, article five and section fourteen, article nine-a of this chapter and article eight-i, article four, chapter eighteen-a of this code apply, except that the joint governing partnership board may exercise governing authority for operation and management of the school in the following areas:
(1) Notwithstanding any other laws for employment, evaluation, mentoring, professional development, suspension and dismissal of public school employees, the powers and duties of the county superintendent are vested in the joint governing partnership board with respect to the employees employed by the county in which the school is located or assigned to the school from the partner county. Pursuant to the provisions of section eight-i, article four, chapter eighteen-a of this code, employees who are hired by the county board of the receiving county shall accrue seniority in both the sending and receiving counties during the time in which they continue to be employed at the jointly established school. Upon losing a position at the jointly established school due to reduction in force or involuntary transfer, an employee shall displace a less senior employee in the county of employment which immediately preceded employment at the jointly established school. Once an employee from the sending county voluntarily transfers or resigns from a position at the jointly established school and is no longer employed in the receiving county, the employee's seniority and any other statutory rights in the receiving county cease.
(2) When initially filling service and professional employee positions at the jointly established school, the counties shall follow the procedures established in section eight-i, article four, chapter eighteen-a of this code. For the initial school year of the jointly established school's opening only, the receiving county may not fill any vacancies created by the retirement or voluntary transfer of employees of the receiving county school from February 1 of the school year immediately preceding the opening of the school until January 1 following the opening of the jointly established school until the receiving county has received the list of employees created pursuant to the provisions of subsection (c), section eight-i, article four, chapter eighteen-a of this code. The receiving county may not fill any of the vacancies referenced in this subsection until the vacancies have been offered to qualified individuals from the certified list.
(3) The employees of the jointly established school are the employees of the employing county board and the partnership board may make recommendations concerning these employment matters to the employing board it considers necessary and appropriate.
(1) The joint governing partnership board is responsible for the formulation and execution of the school's strategic improvement plan and technology plan to meet the goals for student and school performance and progress.
(2) In its formulation of these plans, the partnership board shall consider the curriculum and plans of the respective county boards to ensure preparation of the students at the school for their successful transition into the higher grade level schools of the respective counties;
(C) Finances. The joint governing partnership board shall control and may approve the expenditure of all funds allocated to the school for the school budget from either county and may solicit and receive donations, apply for and receive grants and conduct fund raisers to supplement the budget; and
(D) Facilities. Consistent with the policies in effect concerning liability insurance coverage, maintenance and appropriate uses of school facilities for the schools of the county in which the school is located, the joint governing partnership board governs the use of the school facility and ensures equitable opportunities for access and use by organizations and groups from both counties.
(d) The joint governing partnership board may adopt policies for the school that are separate from the policies of the respective counties and, working in concert with its local school improvement council, may propose alternatives to the operation of the school which require the request of a waiver of policy, interpretation or statute from either or both county boards, the state board or the Legislature as appropriate.
(e) The superintendents and presidents of county boards of adjoining counties that have in effect on the effective date of this section a memorandum of understanding on the governance and operation of a jointly established school shall report to the Legislative Oversight Commission on Education Accountability on or before November 1, 2013, on the status of implementation of this section.
(1) Once established, the joint governing partnership board established under this pilot initiative shall remain in effect for five consecutive school years unless authority for the pilot initiative is repealed.
(2) The Legislative Oversight Commission on Education Accountability may request the superintendents and the presidents of the county boards to provide periodic updates on this pilot initiative. Also, at the conclusion of the five-year pilot initiative, they shall report their recommendations on the viability of the joint governing partnership board approach and any recommended changes to the Legislative Oversight Commission on Education Accountability.
(A) When the five-year period is concluded, by affirmative vote of both boards, the joint governing partnership board shall remain in effect; or
(B) The agreement between the boards for the governance and operation of the school shall revert to the terms in effect on the effective date of this section, subject to amendment by agreement of the boards.
Acts, 1983 Reg. Sess., Ch. 35.
Subject to the provisions of this chapter and the rules of the state board, each county board may:
(a) Control and manage all of the schools and school interests for all school activities and upon all school property owned or leased by the county, including:
(1) Requiring schools to keep records regarding funds connected with the school or school interests, including all receipts and disbursements of all funds collected or received by:
(A) Any principal, teacher, student or other person in connection with the schools and school interests;
(B) Any program, activity or other endeavor of any nature operated or conducted by or in the name of the school; and
(C) Any organization or body directly connected with the school;
(2) Allowing schools to expend funds for student, parent, teacher and community recognition programs. A school may use only funds it generates through a fund-raising or donation-soliciting activity. Prior to commencing the activity, the school shall:
(A) Publicize the activity as intended for this purpose; and
(B) Designate for this purpose the funds generated;
(3) Auditing the records and conserving the funds, including securing surety bonds by expending board moneys. The funds described in this subsection are quasipublic funds, which means the moneys were received for the benefit of the school system as a result of curricular or noncurricular activities;
(1) Schools, from preschool through high school;
(2) Vocational schools; and
(3) Schools and programs for post-high school instruction, subject to approval of the state board;
(c) Close any school:
(1) Which is unnecessary and assign the students to other schools. The closing shall occur pursuant to official action of the county board. Except in emergency situations when the timing and manner of notification are subject to approval by the state superintendent, the county board shall notify the affected teachers and service personnel of the county board action not later than the first Monday in April. The board shall provide notice in the same manner as set forth in section four of this article; or
(2) Pursuant to the provisions of subsection (e) of this section;
(d) Consolidate schools;
(e) Close any elementary school whose average daily attendance falls below twenty students for two consecutive months. The county board may assign the students to other schools in the district or to schools in adjoining districts. If the teachers in the closed school are not transferred or reassigned to other schools, they shall receive one month's salary;
(f) Provide transportation according to rules established by the county board, as follows:
(1) To provide at public expense adequate means of transportation:
(A) For all children of school age who live more than two miles distance from school by the nearest available road;
(B) For school children participating in county board-approved curricular and extracurricular activities;
(C) Across county lines for students transferred from one district to another by mutual agreement of both county boards. The agreement shall be recorded in the meeting minutes of each participating county board and is subject to the provisions of subsection (h) of this section; and
(D) Within available revenues, for students within two miles distance of the school; and
(2) To provide transportation for participants in projects operated, financed, sponsored or approved by the Bureau of Senior Services. This transportation shall be provided at no cost to the county board. All costs and expenses incident in any way to this transportation shall be borne by the bureau or the local or county affiliate of the bureau;
(3) Any school bus owned by the county board may be operated only by a bus operator regularly employed by the county board, except as provided in subsection (g) of this section;
(4) Pursuant to rules established by the state board, the county board may provide for professional employees to be certified to drive county board-owned vehicles that have a seating capacity of fewer than ten passengers. These employees may use the vehicles to transport students for school-sponsored activities, but may not use the vehicles to transport students between school and home. Not more than one of these vehicles may be used for any school-sponsored activity;
(5) Students may not be transported to a school-sponsored activity in any county-owned or leased vehicle that does not meet school bus or public transit ratings. This section does not prohibit a parent from transporting ten or fewer students in a privately-owned vehicle;
(6) Students may be transported to a school-sponsored activity in a vehicle that has a seating capacity of sixteen or more passengers which is not owned and operated by the county board only as follows:
(A) The state board shall promulgate a rule to establish requirements for:
(i) Automobile insurance coverage;
(ii) Vehicle safety specifications;
(iii) School bus or public transit ratings; and
(iv) Driver training, certification and criminal history record check; and
(B) The vehicle owner shall provide to the county board proof that the vehicle and driver satisfy the requirements of the state board rule; and
(7) Buses shall be used for extracurricular activities as provided in this section only when the insurance coverage required by this section is in effect;
(g) Lease school buses pursuant to rules established by the county board.
(1) Leased buses may be operated only by bus operators regularly employed by the county board, except that these buses may be operated by bus operators regularly employed by another county board in this state if bus operators from the owning county are unavailable.
(2) The lessee shall bear all costs and expenses incurred by, or incidental to the use of, the bus.
(3) The county board may lease buses to:
(A) Public and private nonprofit organizations and private corporations to transport school-age children for camps or educational activities;
(B) Any college, university or officially recognized campus organization for transporting students, faculty and staff to and from the college or university. Only college and university students, faculty and staff may be transported pursuant to this paragraph. The lease shall include provisions for:
(i) Compensation for bus operators;
(ii) Consideration for insurance coverage, repairs and other costs of service; and
(iii) Any rules concerning student behavior;
(C) Public and private nonprofit organizations, including education employee organizations, for transportation associated with fairs, festivals and other educational and cultural events. The county board may charge fees in addition to those charges otherwise required by this subsection;
(h) To provide at public expense for insurance coverage against negligence of the drivers of school buses, trucks or other vehicles operated by the county board. Any contractual agreement for transportation of students shall require the vehicle owner to maintain insurance coverage against negligence in an amount specified by the county board;
(i) Provide for the full cost or any portion thereof for group plan insurance benefits not provided or available under the West Virginia Public Employees Insurance Act. Any of these benefits shall be provided:
(1) Solely from county board funds; and
(2) For all regular full-time employees of the county board;
(j) Employ teacher aides; to provide in-service training for the aides pursuant to rules established by the state board; and, prior to assignment, to provide a four-clock-hour program of training for a service person assigned duties as a teacher aide in an exceptional children program. The four-clock-hour program shall consist of training in areas specifically related to the education of exceptional children;
(k) Establish and operate a self-supporting dormitory for:
(1) Students attending a high school or participating in a post high school program; and
(2) Persons employed to teach in the high school or post high school program;
(l) At the county board's discretion, employ, contract with or otherwise engage legal counsel in lieu of using the services of the prosecuting attorney to advise, attend to, bring, prosecute or defend, as the case may be, any matters, actions, suits and proceedings in which the county board is interested;
(m) Provide appropriate uniforms for school service personnel;
(n) Provide at public expense for payment of traveling expenses incurred by any person invited to appear to be interviewed concerning possible employment by the county board, subject to rules established by the county board;
(o) Allow designated employees to use publicly provided carriage to travel from their residences to their workplace and return. The use:
(1) Is subject to the supervision of the county board; and
(2) Shall be directly connected with, required by and essential to the performance of the employee's duties and responsibilities;
(p) Provide at public expense adequate public liability insurance, including professional liability insurance, for county board employees;
(q) Enter into cooperative agreements with other county boards to provide improvements to the instructional needs of each district. The cooperative agreements may be used to employ specialists in a field of academic study or for support functions or services for the field. The agreements are subject to approval by the state board;
(r) Provide information about vocational and higher education opportunities to exceptional students. The county board shall provide in writing to the students and their parents or guardians information relating to programs of vocational education and to programs available at state institutions of higher education. The information may include sources of available funding, including grants, mentorships and loans for students who wish to attend classes at institutions of higher education;
(s) Enter into agreements with other county boards for the transfer and receipt of any funds determined to be fair when students are permitted or required to attend school in a district other than the district of their residence. These agreements are subject to the approval of the state board; and
(t) Enter into job-sharing arrangements, as defined in section one, article one, chapter eighteen-a of this code, with its employees, subject to the following provisions:
(1) A job-sharing arrangement shall meet all the requirements relating to posting, qualifications and seniority, as provided in article four, chapter eighteen-a of this code;
(2) Notwithstanding any contrary provision of this code or legislative rule and specifically the provisions of article sixteen, chapter five of this code, a county board that enters into a job-sharing arrangement:
(A) Shall provide insurance coverage to the one employee mutually agreed upon by the employees participating in that arrangement; and
(B) May not provide insurance benefits of any type to more than one of the job-sharing employees, including any group plan available under the State Public Employees Insurance Act;
(3) Each job-sharing agreement shall be in writing on a form prescribed and furnished by the county board. The agreement shall designate specifically one employee only who is entitled to the insurance coverage. Any employee who is not designated is not eligible for state public employees insurance coverage regardless of the number of hours he or she works;
(4) All employees involved in the job-sharing agreement shall meet the requirements of subdivision (3), section two, article sixteen, chapter five of this code; and
(5) When entering into a job-sharing agreement, the county board and the participating employees shall consider issues such as retirement benefits, termination of the job-sharing agreement and any other issue the parties consider appropriate. Any provision in the agreement relating to retirement benefits may not cause any cost to be incurred by the retirement system that is more than the cost that would be incurred if a single employee were filling the position; and
(u) Under rules it establishes for each child, expend an amount not to exceed the proportion of all school funds of the district that each child would be entitled to receive if all the funds were distributed equally among all the children of school age in the district upon a per capita basis.
(1) Prepare and reduce to writing its reasons and supporting data regarding the school closing or consolidation. The written reasons shall:
(A) Be available for public inspection in the office of the county school superintendent during the thirty days preceding the date of the public hearing required by this section;
(B) Be delivered in duplicate to the:
(i) Principal of a school which is proposed to be closed or consolidated, and of any school which will receive the students who are relocated as a result of the closure or consolidation; and
(ii) The chair, if any, of the local school improvement council representing a school which is proposed to be closed or consolidated, and any school which will receive the students who are relocated as a result of the closure or consolidation; and
(C) Comply with the rule promulgated pursuant to subsection (b) of this section;
(2) Provide notice for a public hearing. The notice shall be advertised through a Class III legal advertisement, pursuant to the provisions of article three, chapter fifty-nine of this code for the three weeks prior to the date of the hearing. The notice shall contain the time and place of the hearing and the proposed action of the county board. Additionally, the notice shall contain the statement that the hearing location is subject to change if at the time the meeting is called to order, it is determined that the meeting location is of insufficient size. A copy of the notice shall be posted at any school which is proposed to be closed or consolidated, and at any school which will receive the students who are relocated as a result of the closure or consolidation, in conspicuous working places for all professional and service personnel to observe. The notice shall be posted at least thirty days prior to the date of the hearing;
(3) Conduct a public hearing which meets the following criteria:
(A) At least a quorum of the county board members and the county superintendent from the county wherein an affected school is located shall attend and be present at the public hearing;
(B) Members of the public may be present, submit statements and testimony, and question county school officials at the public hearing;
(C) A separate hearing shall be held for each school closed or consolidated;
(D) More than one hearing may be held during any one day;
(E) The hearing shall be held in a facility of sufficient size to accommodate all those who desire to attend;
(F) If, at the time the hearing is called to order, it is determined by the board that insufficient space is available to accommodate all those who desire to attend, the hearing shall be recessed and moved to a new location of sufficient size to accommodate all those who desire to attend. If the meeting location is changed due to insufficient capacity, the county board shall cause the new meeting location to be posted at the original meeting location; and
(G) The hearing is subject to the requirements set forth in the rule promulgated in accordance with subsection (c) of this section; and
(4) Receive findings and recommendations from any local school improvement council representing an affected school relating to the proposed closure or consolidation prior to or at the public hearing.
(b) The state board shall promulgate a rule, in accordance with the provisions of article three-b, chapter twenty-nine-a of this code, detailing the type of supporting data a county board shall include as part of its written statement of reason required by this section for school closing or consolidation. The rule shall require at least the following data:
(1) The transportation time of the affected students; and
(2) Any data required by the state board to amend a county's comprehensive educational facilities plan.
(c) The state board shall promulgate a rule, in accordance with the provisions of article three-b, chapter twenty-nine-a of this code, that establishes the procedure to be followed by county boards when conducting a public hearing on the issues of school consolidation and closing.
(1) The rule shall provide standards for at least the following:
(A) The appropriate forum and venue for public hearings to be held;
(B) A process for affording interested parties the opportunity for their perspectives to be expressed;
(C) Establishing, where necessary, reasonable restrictions on the amount of time allowed each individual desiring to speak so that all parties wishing to speak at the hearing are given an equal amount of time; and
(D) Scheduling and organizing public hearings when more than one school within a county is proposed for consolidation or closure.
(2) It is the purpose of this subsection to provide for uniformity among the counties in the procedures followed when scheduling, organizing and conducting public hearings on the issues of school consolidation and closure.
(d) The state board shall promulgate the rules required by this section by the first day of June, two thousand two.
(e) Any document prepared, notice given, hearing conducted or action taken prior to the effective date of the amendments made to this section during the two thousand two regular session of the Legislature, is considered sufficient if the county board complied with the terms of this section effective at the time and the county board violates no other provision of law which would invalidate the document, notice, hearing or actions.
(1) Establishing direct links between the county board and its local school improvement councils and between the county board and its faculty senates for the purpose of enabling the county board to receive information, comments and suggestions directly from the councils and faculty senates regarding the broad guidelines for oversight procedures, standards of accountability and planning for future needs as required by this section. To further development of these linkages, each county board shall:
(A) Meet at least annually with a quorum of members from each local school improvement council in the district, at a time and in a manner to be determined by the county board, except, in order to facilitate scheduling, the county board may adopt an alternate procedure allowing it to conduct the required annual meeting with each council in the absence of a quorum of council members if the alternate procedure has received prior approval from the state board and if the school district serves more than twenty thousand students or has more than twelve public schools.
Nothing in this section prohibits a county board from meeting with representatives of a local school improvement council, but at least one annual meeting shall be held, as specified in this section.
At any time and with reasonable advance notice, county boards may schedule additional meetings with the council for any low performing school in the district;
(B) At least thirty days before an annual meeting with each local school improvement council, develop and submit to the council an agenda for the annual meeting which requires the council chair or a member designated by the chair, to address items designated by the county board from the report created pursuant to this section, and one or more of the following issues:
(i) School performance;
(iii) Status of the school in meeting the unified school improvement plan established pursuant to section five, article two-e of this chapter; and
(iv) Status of the school in meeting the county plan established pursuant to section five, article two-e of this chapter;
(C) Make written requests for information from the local school improvement council throughout the year or hold community forums to receive input from the affected community as the county board considers necessary; and
(D) Report details to the state board concerning the meeting or meetings held with councils, as specified in this section. The information shall be provided to the state board at the conclusion of the school year, but no later than the first day of September of each year, and shall become an indicator in the performance accreditation process for each county. In order to facilitate development of this report, a county board may consult with and request assistance from members of the councils.
(2) Providing for the development of direct links between the county board and the community at large allowing for community involvement at regular county board meetings and specifying how the county board will communicate regularly with the public regarding important issues;
(3) Providing for the periodic review of personnel policies of the district in order to determine their effectiveness;
(4) Setting broad guidelines for the school district, including the establishment of specific oversight procedures, development and implementation of standards of accountability and development of long-range plans to meet future needs as required by this section; and
(5) Using school-based accreditation and performance data provided by the state board and other available data in county board decisionmaking to meet the education goals of the state and other goals as the county board may establish.
(b) On or before the first day of August of each year, county school boards shall review the policies listed in subsection (a) of this section and may modify these policies as necessary.
(b) Persons over the age of twenty-one may enter only those programs or classes authorized by the state board of education and deemed appropriate by the county board of education conducting any such program or class: Provided, That authorization for such programs or classes shall in no way serve to affect or eliminate programs or classes offered by county boards of education at the adult level for which fees are charged to support such programs or classes.
County boards of education shall annually provide a program, during at least one noninstructional day of the school term, for the study of multicultural education for all school personnel as defined in subsection (a), section one, article one, chapter eighteen-a of this code. The study provided shall be in compliance with regulations to be developed by the state board of education.
As used in this section, multicultural education means the study of the pluralistic nature of American society, including its values, institutions, organizations, groups, status positions and social roles.
Every instructional day in the public schools of this state shall be commenced with a pledge of allegiance to the flag of the United States. Pupils who do not wish to participate in this exercise shall be excused from making such pledge.
(b) County boards of education shall be required, to the extent funds are provided, to establish programs for the prevention of child abuse and neglect and child assault. Such programs shall be provided to pupils, parents and school personnel as deemed appropriate. Such programs shall be in compliance with regulations to be developed by the State Board of Education with the advice and assistance of the state Department of Health and Human Resources and the West Virginia State Police: Provided, That any such programs which substantially comply with the regulations adopted by the board and were in effect prior to the adoption of the regulations may be continued.
(c) Funds for implementing the child abuse and neglect prevention and child assault prevention programs may be allocated to the county boards of education from the children's trust fund established pursuant to the provisions of article six-c, chapter forty-nine of this code or appropriated for such purpose by the Legislature.
(d) County boards of education shall request from the State Criminal Identification Bureau the record of any and all criminal convictions relating to child abuse, sex-related offenses or possession of controlled substances with intent to deliver same for all of its future employees. This request shall be made immediately after the effective date of this section, and thereafter as warranted.
(e) Contractors or service providers or their employees may not make direct, unaccompanied contact with students or access school grounds unaccompanied when students are present if it cannot be verified that the contractors, service providers or employees have not previously been convicted of a qualifying offense, as defined in section two, article twelve, chapter fifteen of this code. For the purposes of this section, contractor and service provider shall be limited to any vendor, individual or entity under contract with a county school board. County school boards may require contractors and service providers to verify the criminal records of their employees before granting the above-mentioned contact or access. Where prior written consent is obtained, county school boards may obtain information from the Central Abuse Registry regarding contractors, service providers and their employees for the purposes of this subsection. Where a contractor or service provider gives his or her prior written consent, the county school board also may share information provided by the Central Abuse Registry with other county school boards for the purposes of satisfying the requirements of this subsection. The requirements of this subsection shall not go into effect until the first day of July, two thousand seven.
Under guidelines established by the department of education in consultation with the department of health, training programs on the prevention, transmission, spread and treatment of acquired immune deficiency syndrome shall be provided by the county boards as in-service training for all school personnel. The county boards shall encourage the attendance of parents at these programs and notify such parents to the fullest extent practicable, including notification in written form and by publication.
(b) Prior to the admission of a pupil to any public school, the principal of that school or his or her designee shall consult the uniform integrated regional computer information system (commonly known as the West Virginia Education Information System) described in subsection (f), section twenty-six, article two, chapter eighteen of this code, to determine whether the pupil requesting admission is, at the time of the request for admission, serving a suspension or expulsion from another public school in West Virginia.
(c) The State Board of Education shall provide for the West Virginia Education Information System to disallow the recording of the enrollment of any pupil who is, at the time of attempted enrollment, serving a suspension or expulsion from another public school in West Virginia, and for that system to notify the user who has attempted to record the enrollment that the pupil may not be enrolled, and to notify that user of the reason therefor.
(d) Notwithstanding any other provision of this code to the contrary, any pupil who has been suspended or expelled from school pursuant to section one-a, article five, chapter eighteen-a of this code, or who has been suspended or expelled from a public or private school in another state, due to actions described in section one-a, article five, chapter eighteen-a of this code, may not be admitted to any public school within the state of West Virginia until the period of suspension or expulsion has expired.
(b) Transfers between counties; legislative findings. --
(1) Transfers of students from one county to another may be made by the county board of the county in which the student desiring to be transferred resides. The transfer shall be subject to the approval of both the board of the county in which the student resides and the board to which the student wishes to be transferred.
(2) Legislative findings. -- Over the past several years, counties have been forced to close a number of schools because of declining student enrollment. School officials predict that an additional eighteen percent loss in enrollment may occur between two thousand two and two thousand twelve. This continued decrease in the number of students enrolled in the public schools of the state may result in more instances of consolidation which will increase the problem of long bus rides for students if they remain in a school in their county of residence.
Therefore the Legislature makes the following findings:
(A) County lines may impede the effective and efficient delivery of education services;
(B) Students often must endure long bus rides to a school within their county of residence when a school in an adjacent county is a fraction of the distance away;
(C) The wishes of parents or guardians to have their children transferred to a county other than their county of residence should be considered by the county boards; and
(D) Where counties cannot agree, it is necessary to establish a process to determine when transfers are appropriate.
(3) The state board shall establish a process whereby a parent or guardian of a student may appeal the refusal of a county board to enter into an agreement to transfer or accept the transfer of the student.
(A) The process shall designate the state superintendent to hear the appeal. In determining whether to overturn a decision of a county board, the state superintendent shall consider such factors as the following:
(i) Travel time for the student;
(ii) Impact on levies or bonds;
(iii) Other financial impact on the county of residence; and
(iv) Such other factors as the state superintendent may determine.
(B) If, during the appeal process, the state superintendent discovers that the education and the welfare of students in the transferring county could be enhanced, the state superintendent may direct that students may be permitted to attend a school in another county.
(C) If multiple appeals are received from the same geographical area of a county, the state superintendent may impose on the receiving county restrictions including, but not limited to, requiring the receiving county to accept all students in that geographical area of the sending county who wish to transfer to the receiving county.
(D) If a student is transferred on either a full-time or a part-time basis without the agreement of both boards by official action as reflected in the minutes of their respective meetings and if the student's parent or guardian fails to appeal or loses the appeal under the process established in subdivision (3) of this subsection, the student shall be counted only in the net enrollment of the county in which the student resides.
(4) If, after two county boards have agreed to a transfer arrangement for a student, that student chooses to return to a school in his or her county of residence after the second month of any school year, the following shall apply:
(A) The county of residence may issue an invoice to the county from which the student transferred for the amount, determined on a pro rata basis, that the county of residence otherwise would have received under the state basic foundation program established in article nine-a of this chapter; and
(B) The county from which the student transferred shall reimburse the county of residence for the amount of the invoice.
(c) Transfers between high schools. -- In any county where a high school is maintained, but topography, impassable roads, long bus rides or other conditions prevent the practicable transportation of any students to such high school, the board may transfer them to a high school in an adjoining county. In any such case, the county boards may enter into an agreement providing for the payment of the cost of transportation, if any, of the students.
(d) Transfers between states. -- Transfer of students from this state to another state shall be upon such terms as shall be mutually agreed upon by the board of the transferring county and the authorities of the school to which the transfer is made.
(e) No parent, guardian or person acting as parent or guardian shall be required to pay for the transfer of a student or for the tuition of the student after the transfer when such transfer is carried out under the terms of this section.
Whenever, in the opinion of the board of education of any county, the education and welfare of a pupil will be enhanced, the board of education of such county shall have the authority to transfer any such pupil or pupils on a part-time or full-time basis from one school district to another school district within the state: Provided, That the boards of education of both the transferor and the transferee districts agree to the same by official action of both boards as reflected in the minutes of their respective meetings.
Any pupil attending a school in a district of this state adjacent to the district of residence during the school year one thousand nine hundred eighty-four--eighty-five, is authorized to continue such attendance in the adjacent district, and, upon written request therefor by the parent or guardian, any person who is entitled to attend the public schools of this state and who resides in the same household and is a member of the immediate family of such pupil is authorized to enroll in such adjacent district. The transferor and transferee school districts shall effectuate any transfer herein authorized in accordance with the provisions of this section.
Whenever a pupil is transferred from one school district to another district on a full-time or part-time basis, the board of education of the school district in which the pupil is a bona fide resident shall pay to the board of education of the school district to which the pupil is transferred a tuition that is agreed upon by both such boards. Tuition for each full-time pupil shall not exceed the difference between the state aid per pupil received by the county to which the pupil is transferred and the county cost per pupil in the county to which said pupil is transferred.
For purposes of net enrollment as defined in section two, article nine-a of this chapter: (1) Whenever a pupil is transferred on a full-time basis from one school district to another district pursuant to the provisions of this section, the county to which the pupil is transferred shall include such pupil in its net enrollment; and (2) whenever a pupil is transferred on a part-time basis from one school district to another school district pursuant to the provisions of this section, the county in which the student is a bona fide resident shall count the pupil in its net enrollment.
(a) All children entering public school for the first time in this state shall be given prior to their enrollments screening tests to determine if they might have vision or hearing impairments or speech and language disabilities. County boards of education may provide, upon request, such screening tests to all children entering nonpublic school. County boards of education shall conduct these screening tests for all children through the use of trained personnel. Parents or guardians of children who are found to have vision or hearing impairments or speech and language disabilities shall be notified of the results of these tests and advised that further diagnosis and treatment of the impairments or disabilities by qualified professional personnel is recommended.
(b) County boards of education shall provide or contract with appropriate health agencies to provide, upon the request of a parent or guardian residing within the district, developmental screening for their child or children under compulsory school attendance age: Provided, That a county board is not required to provide such screening to the same child more than once in any one school year. Developmental screening is the process of measuring the progress of children to determine if there are problems or potential problems or advanced abilities in the areas of understanding language, perception through sight, perception through hearing, motor development and hand-eye coordination, health, and psycho-social or physical development. The boards shall coordinate the provision of developmental screening with other public agencies and the interagency plan for exceptional children under section eight, article twenty of this chapter to avoid the duplication of services and to facilitate the referral of children and their parents or guardians who need other services. The county boards shall provide notice to the public of the availability of these services.
(c) The state board of education is hereby authorized to promulgate rules consistent with this section. The state superintendent is directed to apply for federal funds, if available, for the implementation of the requirements of this section.
(a) County boards shall provide kindergarten programs for all children who have attained the age of five prior to September 1, of the school year in which the pupil enters the kindergarten program and may, pursuant to the provisions of section forty-four, article five, chapter eighteen of this code, establish kindergarten programs designed for children below the age of five. The programs for children who shall have attained the age of five shall be full- day everyday programs.
(b) Persons employed as kindergarten teachers, as distinguished from paraprofessional personnel, shall be required to hold a certificate valid for teaching at the assigned level as prescribed by rules established by the state board. The state board shall establish the minimum requirements for all paraprofessional personnel employed in kindergarten programs established pursuant to the provisions of this section and no such paraprofessional personnel may be employed in any kindergarten program unless he or she meets the minimum requirements. Beginning July 1, 2014, any person previously employed as an aide in a kindergarten program and who is employed in the same capacity on and after that date and any new person employed in that capacity in a kindergarten program on and after that date shall hold the position of aide and either Early Childhood Classroom Assistant Teacher I, Early Childhood Classroom Assistant Teacher II or Early Childhood Classroom Assistant Teacher III. Any person employed as an aide in a kindergarten program that is eligible for full retirement benefits before July 1, 2020, may remain employed as an aide in that position and shall be granted an Early Childhood Classroom Assistant Teacher permanent authorization by the state superintendent pursuant to section two-a, article three, chapter eighteen-a of this code.
(c) The state board with the advice of the state superintendent shall establish and prescribe guidelines and criteria relating to the establishment, operation and successful completion of kindergarten programs in accordance with the other provisions of this section. Guidelines and criteria so established and prescribed also are intended to serve for the establishment and operation of nonpublic kindergarten programs and shall be used for the evaluation and approval of those programs by the state superintendent, provided application for the evaluation and approval is made in writing by proper authorities in control of the programs. The state superintendent, annually, shall publish a list of nonpublic kindergarten programs, including Montessori kindergartens that have been approved in accordance with the provisions of this section. Montessori kindergartens established and operated in accordance with usual and customary practices for the use of the Montessori method which have teachers who have training or experience, regardless of additional certification, in the use of the Montessori method of instruction for kindergartens shall be considered to be approved.
(d) Pursuant to the guidelines and criteria, and only pursuant to the guidelines and criteria, the county boards may establish programs taking kindergarten to the homes of the children involved, using educational television, paraprofessional personnel in addition to and to supplement regularly certified teachers, mobile or permanent classrooms and other means developed to best carry kindergarten to the child in its home and enlist the aid and involvement of its parent or parents in presenting the program to the child; or may develop programs of a more formal kindergarten type, in existing school buildings, or both, as the county board may determine, taking into consideration the cost, the terrain, the existing available facilities, the distances each child may be required to travel, the time each child may be required to be away from home, the child's health, the involvement of parents and other factors as each county board may find pertinent. The determinations by any county board are final and conclusive.
County boards of education shall provide, by the school year one thousand nine hundred eighty-three--eighty-four, and thereafter, sufficient personnel, equipment and facilities as will ensure that each first and second grade classroom, or classrooms having two or more grades that include either the first or second grades shall not have more than twenty-five pupils for each teacher of the grade or grades and shall not have more than twenty pupils for each kindergarten teacher per session, unless the state superintendent has excepted a specific classroom upon application therefor by a county board.
County boards shall provide by the school year one thousand nine hundred eighty-four--eighty-five, and continue thereafter, sufficient personnel, equipment and facilities as will ensure that each third, fourth, fifth and sixth grade classroom, or classrooms having two or more grades that include one or more of the third, fourth, fifth and sixth grades, shall not have more than twenty-five pupils for each teacher of the grade or grades.
Beginning with the school year one thousand nine hundred eighty-six--eighty-seven, and thereafter, no county shall maintain a greater number of classrooms having two or more grades that include one or more of the grade levels referred to in this section than were in existence in said county as of the first day of January, one thousand nine hundred eighty-three: Provided, That for the prior school years, and only if there is insufficient classroom space available in the school or county, a county may maintain one hundred ten percent of such number of classrooms.
During the school year one thousand nine hundred eighty-four--eighty-five, and thereafter, the state superintendent is authorized, consistent with sound educational policy, (a) to permit on a statewide basis, in grades four through six, more than twenty-five pupils per teacher in a classroom for the purposes of instruction in physical education, and (b) to permit more than twenty pupils per teacher in a specific kindergarten classroom and twenty-five pupils per teacher in a specific classroom in grades one through six during a school year in the event of extraordinary circumstances as determined by the state superintendent after application by a county board of education.
The state board shall establish guidelines for the exceptions authorized in this section, but in no event shall the superintendent except classrooms having more than three pupils above the pupil-teacher ratio as set forth in this section.
The requirement for approval of an exception to exceed the twenty pupils per kindergarten teacher per session limit or the twenty-five pupils per teacher limit in grades one through six is waived in schools where the schoolwide pupil-teacher ratio is twenty-five or less in grades one through six: Provided, That a teacher shall not have more than three pupils above the teacher/pupil ratio as set forth in this section. Any kindergarten teacher who has more than twenty pupils per session and any classroom teacher of grades one through six who has more than twenty-five pupils shall be paid additional compensation based on the affected classroom teacher's average daily salary divided by twenty for kindergarten teachers or twenty-five for teachers of grades one through six for every day times the number of additional pupils enrolled up to the maximum pupils permitted in the teacher's classroom. All such additional compensation shall be paid from county funds exclusively.
Notwithstanding any other provision of this section to the contrary, commencing with the school year beginning on the first day of July, one thousand nine hundred ninety-four, a teacher in grades one, two or three or classrooms having two or more such grade levels, shall not have more than two pupils above the teacher/pupil ratio as set forth in this section: Provided, That commencing with the school year beginning on the first day of July, one thousand nine hundred ninety-five, such teacher shall not have more than one pupil above the teacher/pupil ratio as set forth in this section: Provided, however, That commencing with the school year beginning on the first day of July, one thousand nine hundred ninety-six, such teacher shall not have any pupils above the teacher/pupil ratio as set forth in this section.
No provision of this section is intended to limit the number of pupils per teacher in a classroom for the purpose of instruction in choral, band or orchestra music.
Each school principal shall assign students equitably among the classroom teachers, taking into consideration reasonable differences due to subject areas and/or grade levels.
The state board shall collect from each county board of education information on class size and the number of pupils per teacher for all classes in grades seven through twelve. The state board shall report such information to the legislative oversight commission on education accountability before the first day of January of each year.
(b) Each county board shall provide counseling services for each pupil enrolled in the public schools of the county.
(c) The school counselor shall work with individual pupils and groups of pupils in providing developmental, preventive and remedial guidance and counseling programs to meet academic, social, emotional and physical needs; including programs to identify and address the problem of potential school dropouts. The school counselor also may provide consultant services for parents, teachers and administrators and may use outside referral services, when appropriate, if no additional cost is incurred by the county board.
(d) The state board may adopt rules consistent with the provisions of this section that define the role of a school counselor based on the "National Standards for School Counseling Programs" of the American school counselor association. A school counselor is authorized to perform such services as are not inconsistent with the provisions of the rule as adopted by the state board. To the extent that any funds are made available for this purpose, county boards shall provide training for counselors and administrators to implement the rule as adopted by the state board.
(e) Each county board shall develop a comprehensive drop-out prevention program utilizing the expertise of school counselors and any other appropriate resources available.
(f) School counselors shall be full-time professional personnel, shall spend at least seventy-five percent of work time in a direct counseling relationship with pupils, and shall devote no more than one fourth of the work day to administrative activities: Provided, That such activities are counselor related.
(g) Nothing in this section prohibits a county board from exceeding the provisions of this section, or requires any specific level of funding by the Legislature.
County boards shall provide by the school year one thousand nine hundred eighty-nine--ninety, and continuing thereafter, programs and instructional procedures that recognize the variability in achievement, development, and background experience of the early childhood years.
Such programs and instructional procedures may include, but shall not be limited to, developmental kindergarten, developmental first grade, early first grade, transitional first grade, and/or developmental second grade.
Placement of children in any of the aforementioned early childhood programs shall be based on the judgment of the teacher and other professional personnel after consultation with the parent or guardian and in accordance with the evaluation model for children as set forth in section two, article two-e of this chapter. Counties may designate one or more classes or schools for such early childhood programs and may transport children to these schools.
Provisions shall be made for early childhood teachers to communicate on a regular basis with other teachers, professional personnel and representatives of other appropriate agencies.
The state board shall establish and prescribe guidelines and criteria relating to the establishment, operation and successful completion of early childhood programs in accordance with the other provisions of this section and high quality educational programs.
Acts, 2007 Reg. Sess., Ch. 9.
(1) The effect on student learning of limits on the number of pupils per teacher in a classroom in elementary classes and in a middle school format in which students have different teachers for different subject matter instruction;
(2) The effect on the equity among teachers in a middle school in which the number of pupils per teacher in a classroom is limited for some teachers and not for others, including the additional pay for certain teachers in whose classrooms the limits are exceeded; and
(3) The effect limits on the number of pupils per teacher in a classroom have on the ability of school systems to offer elective courses in secondary schools.
(b) The legislative oversight commission on education accountability shall issue a report of its findings and recommendations, together with any legislation necessary to effectuate its recommendations, on or before the second day of January, two thousand three. In making its findings and recommendations the commission:
(1) Shall include, at a minimum, a recommendation on whether the limits on the number of pupils per teacher in a classroom in a middle school format should be removed or capped on a county-wide or individual school basis; and
(2) May not include as a recommendation consideration of imposing limits on the number of pupils per teacher at grade levels above the sixth grade.
County boards may establish and maintain evening classes or night schools, continuation or part-time day schools, alternative schools and vocational schools, wherever practicable to do so, and shall admit adult persons and all other persons, including persons of foreign birth. County boards may admit school-age children and youth to these classes or schools under the circumstances prescribed by a State Board of Education policy governing alternative education programs. County boards may use school funds for the financial support of such schools and to use the schoolhouses and their equipment for these purposes. Any such classes of schools shall be conducted in accordance with the rules of the state board.
County boards may provide for the free, comfortable and convenient use of any school property to promote and facilitate frequent meetings and associations of the people for discussion, study, recreation and other community activities, and may secure, assemble and house material for use in the study of farm, home and community problems, and may provide facilities for the dissemination of information useful on the farm, in the home or in the community.
In addition to the liability protection for organized use outlined in section nineteen-d of this article, county boards are not liable for any loss or injury arising from the use of school property made available for unorganized recreation. County boards are liable for their acts or omissions which constitute gross negligence or willful and wanton conduct which is the proximate cause of injury or property damage.
The board of education of any county shall have authority to enter into contracts of agreement with authorized officials of the "war veterans' administration" for the education of veterans in special classes of the elementary and high schools of the county. By reason of such contracts, the county board of education shall have authority to receive tuitions, fees and other forms of assistance that may now or later be made available by act of the Congress for the education of war veterans. Any funds so accruing to such board from tuitions, fees or other forms of financial assistance shall be credited to the current expense fund of the county board of education and reported each year as of June thirtieth in the manner required for other financial reports of the board.
(a) The board of education of any county shall have authority to provide classes and programs for adult education and to charge tuition for members of such classes and/or programs, such tuitions not to exceed in any case the actual cost of operation of such classes and/or programs. The county board of education shall also have authority to enter into contracts of agreement with authorized agencies of the federal government for the education of adults and to provide, assemble and house materials and equipment for efficient instruction in any and all such classes and/or programs, contract for instruction for the term of the class and/or program to be offered, and to use school facilities by way of buildings and equipment under the control of said board. Any funds accruing from such tuitions shall be credited to adult education in the current expense fund of the county board of education and reported each year as of June thirtieth in the manner required for other financial reports of the board.
(b) Student assistance loans for attendance in adult education classes and/or programs shall be available in accordance with the applicable provisions of article twenty-two-d of this chapter to an eligible student pursuant to regulations promulgated by the state board of education, who shall administer such loan program as it relates to adult education classes and/or programs, and who shall stand in the place of the board of regents for purposes of loans received pursuant to this section. The limitations on investment provided for in section four of said article twenty-two-d shall remain in full force and effect.
State board regulations shall be in accordance with the provisions of article twenty-two-d to the extent practicable, except that the regulations shall provide for the following:
(1) The eligible student must be a high school graduate or equivalent or must be eighteen years of age;
(2) Maximum loan amounts and the maximum number of loans received by any eligible student shall be prescribed by regulation of the state board;
(3) The loan agreement may provide for the repayment of interest only until such time as the eligible student is no longer enrolled in the approved adult education class and/or program. However, in all cases, repayment of the principal shall commence at such time as the eligible student is no longer enrolled in the adult education class or program for which a loan or loans were received pursuant to this section: Provided, That an eligible student who enrolls in an institution of higher education subsequent to such adult education enrollment may defer such payment until completion or withdrawal from the institution of higher education; and
(4) Notwithstanding the time in which the eligible lending institution may provide for the repayment of the loan, the linked deposit shall be terminated at the maturity date next succeeding complete repayment or five years after cessation of enrollment, whichever is sooner.
The state board is not liable to any eligible lending institution in any manner for payment of the principal or interest on the loan to an eligible student.
(c) The board of education of any county shall have authority to enter into contracts of agreement with temporary teachers for the purpose of teaching adult education classes or programs which do not exceed ninety days or seven hundred twenty hours. The appointment of a temporary teacher is a contract of agreement for the duration of the class or program, and the temporary teacher shall not accrue benefits of retirement, personal leave, medical or life insurance, seniority rights, or any other provisions relating to salaries, wages and benefits pursuant to article four, chapter eighteen-a of this code: Provided, That such temporary appointment does not preclude the benefits mandated by federal law, workers' compensation and liability insurance coverage for the duration of the class or program.
(b) The Legislature finds that:
(1) The General Educational Development (GED) exam is an implement for success that can transform the future of a graduate;
(2) For an individual who has not attained a high school diploma, achieving a High School Equivalency Diploma can increase employment opportunities and earning potential;
(3) Individuals who will benefit from a High School Equivalency Diploma often lack the credentials necessary for employment, and therefore lack the resources to afford the costs of the GED exam; and
(4) Many individuals for whom the GED exam is unattainable are likely to remain in a state of poverty.
(c) The state board shall develop and administer a program to provide the GED exam fee for an eligible individual pursuing a High School Equivalency Diploma. The state board shall promulgate a rule in accordance with the provisions of article three-b, chapter twenty-nine-a of this code to implement the program.
(1) The rule shall provide for eligibility requirements as follows:
(A) Successful completion of a GED preparation program;
(B) Successful completion of the GED Official Practice Test;
(C) Standards for measuring successful completion of the program and test required by this subdivision;
(D) GED exam registration with a GED testing center that is approved by the state board; and
(E) Any other requirements established by the state board.
(2) The state board shall provide the GED exam fee directly to the GED testing center.
(a)(1) If the requirements of this subsection are met, the board of education is not liable under any theory of vicarious or imputed liability for the acts or omissions of:
(A) Any person, organization or association using school property for a community activity described in section nineteen of this article;
(B) Any member, employee or agent of such person, organization or association; or
(C) Any person attending or participating in the community activity other than an employee of the board while acting within the scope of employment.
(2) The limitation of liability extended the board of education pursuant to this subsection does not apply unless:
(A) The person, organization or association using school property for a community activity has in effect, at the time of the act or omission described in subdivision (1) of this subsection, a contract of insurance which provides general comprehensive liability coverage of any claim, demand, action, suit or judgment by reason of alleged negligence or other acts resulting in bodily injury or property damage to any person arising out of the use of school property for a community activity described in subdivision (1) of this subsection;
(B) The contract of insurance provides for the payment of any attorney fees, court costs and other litigation expenses incurred by the board in connection with any claim, demand, action, suit or judgment arising from such alleged negligence or other act; and
(C) The insurance coverage is in the amounts specified in the provisions of section five-a, article twelve, chapter twenty-nine of this code.
(3)(A) The insurance described in subdivision (2) of this subsection may be obtained privately or may be obtained pursuant to the provisions of this subdivision. If requested by any person, organization or association seeking such insurance coverage, the State Board of Risk and Insurance Management is authorized to provide such insurance and to enter into any necessary contract of insurance to further the intent of this subdivision.
(B) Where provided by the State Board of Risk and Insurance Management, the cost of the insurance, as determined by the such board, shall be paid by the person, organization or association and may include administrative expenses. All funds received by such board shall be deposited with the West Virginia Board of Investments for investment purposes.
(C) The State Board of Risk and Insurance Management is hereby authorized and empowered to negotiate and effect settlement of any and all claims covered by the insurance provided by such board pursuant to this subdivision to the extent the board is authorized and empowered to negotiate and effect settlement of claims described in section five, article twelve, chapter twenty-nine of this code.
(4) As used in this subsection, "organization" or "association" means a bona fide, not for profit, tax-exempt, benevolent, educational, philanthropic, humane, patriotic, civic, eleemosynary, incorporated or unincorporated association or organization or a rescue unit or other similar volunteer community service organization or association, but does not include any nonprofit association or organization, whether incorporated or not, which is organized primarily for the purposes of influencing legislation or advocating or opposing the nomination, election or defeat of any candidate, or the passage or defeat of any issue, thing or item to be voted upon.
(b) In addition to the liability protection for organized use outlined in this section, county boards are not liable for any loss or injury arising from the use of school property made available for unorganized recreation. County boards are liable for their acts or omissions which constitute gross negligence or willful and wanton conduct which is the proximate cause of injury or property damage.
(c) Nothing in this section shall affect the rights, duties, defenses, immunities or causes of action under other statutes or the common law of this state which may be applicable to boards of education.
The board shall have authority to employ during the vacation period a librarian for any school having a library of one hundred or more volumes, and to pay such librarian out of the school funds of the county an amount to be determined by the board. Any librarian so appointed shall keep the library open at least one day a week, at which time the patrons and pupils of the school may draw books from the library under such rules and regulations for the care and return thereof as the board may prescribe.
In such case, at the commencement of every term, the county superintendent shall deliver to the teachers of the various schools the textbooks necessary for the use of the several pupils enrolled therein for the ensuing term of school and shall take from them receipts showing the number and kind of textbooks so received. It shall be the duty of the teachers to take charge of such textbooks and to distribute them among the pupils of their schools as needed; and said teachers shall have and exercise general control of all such textbooks, and at the close of the school term, and before receiving an order for salary for the last month of such term, shall collect and gather together all textbooks so used and deliver them to the county superintendent.
If any of the textbooks delivered to any pupils shall be unnecessarily injured or destroyed, they shall be replaced by the pupils who injured or destroyed them.
The board of education of every county shall provide the textbooks to be used in the free schools for the pupils whose parents, in the judgment of the board, are unable to provide the same; such textbooks shall be those adopted by the state board of education.
The board of education of every county, upon application of the proper authorities of any private school, may likewise provide state-adopted textbooks for use of the pupils enrolled therein whose parents, in the judgment of the board, are unable to provide same.
In accordance with the provisions of this act the state superintendent of schools shall distribute among the several counties of the state each year such amounts of free textbook money as the Legislature may provide for such distribution. The amount of money that a county shall so receive shall be determined as follows:
Each county shall share in state aid for the purchase of state-adopted textbooks according to the ratio which its total net enrollment in public schools, grades one to eight inclusive, for the preceding school year, bears to the total net enrollment in public schools for the state as a whole, grades one to eight inclusive, for the preceding year.
The money allocated to a county board of education under this act shall be kept by such county board in a separate account to be known as the "free textbook account" and may be used for no other purpose except as otherwise provided by this section. Any balances being held in the "textbook aid account," as provided by law, are by this act authorized and directed to be transferred to said "free textbook account" to be used in accordance with the provisions of this act.
After complying with sections twenty-one-a and twenty-one-b of this article, the county board of education shall use any proceeds remaining in the "free textbook account" for the purchase (including replacement and repair) of textbooks for all pupils enrolled in the public schools of the county, grades one to eight inclusive, who are not provided with free textbooks under the requirements of sections twenty-one-a and twenty-one-b of said article. Such textbooks shall be those adopted by the state board of education for the elementary schools of the state.
The order of preference used in providing free textbooks for such pupils shall be either by grade preference in accordance with the plan as stated in subsection one below, or by subject preference in accordance with the plan as stated in subsection two below. The county board of education shall be required to adopt the one of these plans considered preferable for the county, and shall so advise the state superintendent of schools in writing before the plan so chosen is made operative through the requisition or purchase of textbooks in accordance therewith.
(1) In furnishing free textbooks by grade preference, the order of such preference shall be to begin with grade one and to continue by consecutive grades to and including grade eight.
(2) In furnishing free textbooks by subject preference, the order of such preference shall be to begin with the lowest grade and to continue by consecutive grades through grade eight as follows: Reading, arithmetic, history, health and elementary science, music, English, geography, writing, spelling, civics: Provided, That the order of subject preference as specified in subsection two above may be changed with prior approval of the state board of education, upon written application of any county stating reasons for wishing to make such change.
In any county in which the provisions of sections twenty-one-a, twenty-one-b, and twenty-one-d of this article shall have been fully complied with, any proceeds yet available in the "free textbook account" shall be used for the purchase of approved library books and other supplementary materials for grades one to eight: Provided, That such purchase shall have the prior approval of the state board of education.
In providing free textbooks to pupils under the provisions of this act, the county board of education shall have authority to purchase state-adopted textbooks from pupils who own them, or from their parents, at a price commensurate with the usable value of said books at the time, but in no case to exceed one half the original purchase price of the textbook to the pupil as determined by reference to the official contract price entered into between the publisher and the state board of education at the time of adoption of said textbook. All such purchases shall conform to the order of preference, either by grade or by subject, adopted by the county board of education under the provisions of subsection one and two above of this section for furnishing free textbooks to the pupils of said county.
Nothing in this act shall be construed to prevent a county board of education from supplementing its "free textbook account" with county school funds available for that purpose and so approved in the annual school budget.
The state board of education shall have authority to prescribe rules and regulations governing the care, distribution and use of free textbooks including their rebinding, reconditioning, replacement, return and storage, and such other measures as may be necessary for efficient and economical administration.
The state board of education is further authorized to prescribe and require reports to be made by the various county boards of education concerning the expenditures and distributions and conditions of inventories at such time and in such form as the board may require.
The state superintendent of schools is authorized to withhold the state allotment of free textbook money from any county for violation of the rules and regulations herein authorized.
(b) Each county board shall employ full time at least one school nurse for every one thousand five hundred kindergarten through seventh grade pupils in net enrollment or major fraction thereof: Provided, That each county shall employ full time at least one school nurse: Provided, however, That a county board may contract with a public health department for services considered equivalent to those required by this section in accordance with a plan to be approved by the state board: Provided further, That the state board shall promulgate rules requiring the employment of school nurses in excess of the number required by this section to ensure adequate provision of services to severely handicapped pupils. An appropriation may be made to the state department to be distributed to county boards to support school health service needs that exceed the capacity of staff as mandated in this section. Each county board shall apply to the state superintendent for receipt of this funding in a manner set forth by the state superintendent that assesses and takes into account varying acuity levels of students with specialized health care needs.
(c) Any person employed as a school nurse must be a registered professional nurse properly licensed by the West Virginia Board of Examiners for Registered Professional Nurses in accordance with article seven, chapter thirty of this code.
(d) Specialized health procedures that require the skill, knowledge and judgment of a licensed health professional may be performed only by school nurses, other licensed school health care providers as provided in this section, or school employees who have been trained and retrained every two years who are subject to the supervision and approval by school nurses. After assessing the health status of the individual student, a school nurse, in collaboration with the student's physician, parents and, in some instances, an individualized education program team, may delegate certain health care procedures to a school employee who shall be trained pursuant to this section, considered competent, have consultation with, and be monitored or supervised by the school nurse: Provided, That nothing in this section prohibits any school employee from providing specialized health procedures or any other prudent action to aid any person who is in acute physical distress or requires emergency assistance. For the purposes of this section "specialized health procedures" means, but is not limited to, catheterization, suctioning of tracheostomy, naso-gastric tube feeding or gastrostomy tube feeding. "School employee" means "teachers" as defined in section one, article one of this chapter and "aides" as defined in section eight, article four, chapter eighteen-a of this code. Commencing with the school year beginning on the first day of July, two thousand two, "school employee" also means "secretary I", "secretary II" and "secretary III" as defined in section eight, article four, chapter eighteen-a of this code: Provided, however, That a "secretary I", "secretary II" and "secretary III" shall be limited to the dispensing of medications.
(e) Any school service employee who elects, or is required by this section, to undergo training or retraining to provide, in the manner specified in this section, the specialized health care procedures for those students for which the selection has been approved by both the principal and the county board shall receive additional pay of at least one pay grade higher than the highest pay grade for which the employee is paid: Provided, That any training required in this section may be considered in lieu of required in-service training of the school employee and a school employee may not be required to elect to undergo the training or retraining: Provided, however, That commencing with the first day of July, one thousand nine hundred eighty-nine, any newly employed school employee in the field of special education is required to undergo the training and retraining as provided in this section: Provided further, That if an employee who holds a class title of an aide is employed in a school and the aide has received the training, pursuant to this section, then an employee in the field of special education is not required to perform the specialized health care procedures.
(f) Each county school nurse, as designated and defined by this section, shall perform a needs assessment. These nurses shall meet on the basis of the area served by their regional educational service agency, prepare recommendations and elect a representative to serve on the council of school nurses established under this section.
(g) There shall be a council of school nurses which shall be convened by the State Board of Education. This council shall prepare a procedural manual and shall provide recommendations regarding a training course to the Commissioner of the Bureau for Public Health who shall consult with the State Department of Education. The state board then has the authority to promulgate a rule in accordance with the provisions of article three-b, chapter twenty-nine-a of this code to implement the training and to create standards used by those school nurses and school employees performing specialized health procedures. The council shall meet every two years to review the certification and training program regarding school employees.
(h) The State Board of Education shall work in conjunction with county boards to provide training and retraining every two years as recommended by the Council of School Nurses and implemented by the rule promulgated by the state board.
All county boards of education shall develop a specific medication administration policy which establishes the procedure to be followed for the administration of medication at each school.
No school employee shall be required to administer medications: Provided, That nothing herein shall prevent any school employee to elect to administer medication after receiving training as provided herein: Provided, however, That any school employee in the field of special education whose employment commenced on or after the first day of July, one thousand nine hundred eighty-nine, may be required to administer medications after receiving training as provided herein.
(1) "Medication" means asthma medicine, prescribed by:
(A) A physician licensed to practice medicine in all its branches; or
(B) A physician assistant who has been delegated the authority to prescribe asthma medications by a supervising physician; or
(C) An advanced practice registered nurse who has a written collaborative agreement with a collaborating physician. Such agreement shall delegate the authority to prescribe the medications for a student that pertain to the student's asthma and that have an individual prescription label.
(2) "Self-administration" or "self-administer" means a student's discretionary use of prescribed asthma medication.
(b) A student enrolled in a public, private, parochial or denominational school located within this state may possess and self-administer asthma medication subject to the following conditions:
(1) The parents or guardians of the student have provided to the school:
(A) A written authorization for the self-administration of asthma medication; and
(B) A written statement from the physician or advanced practice registered nurse which contains the name, purpose, appropriate usage and dosage of the student's medication and the time or times at which, or the special circumstances under which, the medication is to be administered;
(2) The student has demonstrated the ability and understanding to self-administer asthma medication by:
(A) Passing an assessment by the school nurse evaluating the student's technique of self-administration and level of understanding of the appropriate use of the asthma medication; or
(B) In the case of nonpublic schools that do not have a school nurse, providing to the school from the student's physician or advanced practice registered nurse written verification that the student has passed such an assessment; and
(3) The parents or guardians of the student have acknowledged in writing that they have read and understand a notice provided by the county board or nonpublic school that:
(A) The school, county school board or nonpublic school and its employees and agents are exempt from any liability, except for willful and wanton conduct, as a result of any injury arising from the self-administration of asthma medication by the student; and
(B) The parents or guardians indemnify and hold harmless the school, the county board of education or nonpublic school and its employees or guardians and agents against any claims arising out of the self-administration of the medication by the student.
(c) The information provided to the school pursuant to subsection (b) of this section shall be kept on file in the office of the school nurse or, in the absence of a school nurse, in the office of the school administrator.
(d) Permission for a student to self-administer asthma medication is effective for the school year for which it is granted and shall be renewed each subsequent school year if the requirements of this section are met.
(e) Permission to self-administer medication may be revoked if the administrative head of the school finds that the student's technique of self-administration and understanding of the use of the asthma medication is not appropriate or is willfully disregarded.
(f) A student with asthma who has met the requirements of this section may possess and use asthma medication:
(1) In school;
(2) At a school-sponsored activity;
(3) Under the supervision of school personnel; or
(4) Before or after normal school activities, such as before school or after school care on school operated property.
(g) The state board shall promulgate rules necessary to effectuate the provisions of this section in accordance with the provisions of article three-b, chapter twenty-nine-a of this code.
(a) A public, private, parochial or denominational school located within this state may possess and maintain at the school a supply of epinephrine auto-injectors for use in emergency medical care or treatment for an anaphylactic reaction. A prior diagnosis for a student or school personnel requiring the use of epinephrine auto-injectors is not necessary to permit the school to stock epinephrine auto-injectors. Epinephrine auto-injectors shall be maintained by the school in a secure location which is only accessible by medical personnel and authorized nonmedical personnel and not by students.
(b) An allopathic physician licensed to practice pursuant to the provisions of article three, chapter thirty of this code or an osteopathic physician licensed to practice pursuant to the provisions of article fourteen, chapter thirty of this code may prescribe within the course of his or her professional practice standing orders and protocols for use when necessary by a school which wishes to maintain epinephrine auto-injector pursuant to the provisions of this section.
(c) A school nurse, as set forth in section twenty-two of this article, is authorized to administer an epinephrine auto-injector to a student or school personnel during regular school hours or at a school function when the school nurse medically believes the individual is experiencing an anaphylactic reaction. A school nurse may use the school supply of epinephrine auto-injectors for a student or school personnel authorized to self-administer that meet the requirements of a prescription on file with the school.
(d) Nonmedical school personnel who have been trained in the administration of an epinephrine auto-injector and who have been designated and authorized by the school to administer the epinephrine auto-injector are authorized to administer an epinephrine auto-injector to a student or school personnel during regular school hours or at a school function when the authorized and designated nonmedical school personnel reasonably believes, based upon their training, that the individual is experiencing an anaphylactic reaction. Nonmedical school personnel may use the school supply of epinephrine auto-injectors for a student or school personnel authorized to self-administer that meet the requirements of a prescription on file with the school.
(e) Prior notice to the parents of a student of the administration of the epinephrine auto-injector is not required. Immediately following the administration of the epinephrine auto-injector, the school shall provide notice to the parent of a student who received an auto-injection.
(f) A school nurse or trained and authorized nonmedical school personnel who administer an epinephrine auto-injection to a student or to school personnel as provided in this section is immune from liability for any civil action arising out of an act or omission resulting from the administration of the epinephrine auto-injection unless the act or omission was the result of the school nurse or trained and authorized nonmedical school personnel's gross negligence or willful misconduct.
(g) For the purposes of this section, all county boards of education may participate in free or discounted drug programs from pharmaceutical manufacturers to provide epinephrine auto-injectors to schools in their counties who choose to stock auto-injectors.
(h) All county boards of education are required to collect and compile aggregate data on incidents of anaphylactic reactions resulting in the administration of school maintained epinephrine auto-injectors in their county during a school year and forward the data to State Superintendent of Schools. The State Superintendent of Schools shall prepare an annual report to be presented to the Joint Committee on Government and Finance as set forth in article three, chapter four of this code, by December 31 of each year.
(i) The State Board of Education, as defined in article two of this chapter, shall consult with the State Health Officer, as defined in section four, article three, chapter thirty of this code, and promulgate rules necessary to effectuate the provisions of this section in accordance with the provisions of article three-b, chapter twenty-nine-a of this code. The rules shall provide, at a minimum, for:
(1) The criteria for selection and minimum requirements of nonmedical school personnel who may administer epinephrine auto-injectors following the necessary training;
(2) The training requirements necessary for nonmedical school personnel to be authorized to administer an epinephrine auto-injection;
(3) Training on anaphylaxis and allergy awareness for food service workers in the school system, if easily available locally;
(4) Storage requirements for maintaining the epinephrine auto-injectors within the schools;
(5) Comprehensive notice requirements to the parents of a student who was administered a school maintained epinephrine auto-injection including who administered the injection, the rational for administering the injection, the approximate time of the injection and any other necessary elements to make the students' parents fully aware of the circumstances surrounding the administration of the injection;
(6) Any and all necessary documentation to be kept and maintained regarding receipt, inventory, storage and usage of all epinephrine auto-injectors;
(7) Detailed reporting requirements for county boards of education on incidents of use of school maintained epinephrine auto-injectors during a school year; and
Boards of education shall purchase United States flags, four by six feet, of regulation bunting, for schools in its district, and require the flags to be displayed from the schools during the time the school is in session, except in inclement weather. The teacher, custodian or other person in charge of the building during the session is responsible for this flag being displayed at the school.
Any United States flag or flag of the State of West Virginia purchased out of the county board building fund must be manufactured in the United States.
(1) Take the oath prescribed in the constitution before performing any of the duties of his office;
(2) Attend all board meetings and record its official proceedings in a book kept for that purpose;
(3) Record the number of each order issued, the name of the payee, the purpose for which the order was issued, and the amount thereof. Every order shall be signed by the secretary and the president of the board;
(4) Care for and keep all papers belonging to the board, including evidences of title, contracts and obligations. They shall be kept in the secretary's office, accessibly arranged for reference;
(5) Record and keep on file all papers and documents pertaining to the business of the board;
(6) Keep the accounts and certify the reports required by law or requested by the board;
(7) Administer oaths to school officers, teachers and others making reports;
(8) Deliver in proper condition to his successor all records and property pertaining to his office; and
(9) Exercise such other duties as are prescribed by law.
The Legislature finds that school facilities are suitable for the provision of child day care and that such day care centers are needed by school personnel and other parents in the school and the community. Therefore, on or before the first day of April of each year, each county board of education shall compile a list of facilities under the jurisdiction of the county board of education which would have space available for child day care for the benefit of school employees and others during the next ensuing school year. Such space shall be made available thereafter for use as a child day care facility upon the decision of the county board or upon written request therefor by a duly authorized representative of the local membership of a statewide association of school personnel, a parent-teacher association or any other entity recognized by the county board as suitably responsible for the implementation of such program in the county until such time as the space is deleted from the list for good cause shown.
The child care facility shall be operated in accordance with guidelines to be adopted by a committee appointed by the state superintendent which shall include representatives of the legislature, the department of human services, at least two individuals active in statewide associations of school personnel, at least two individuals active in parent-teacher associations, and at least two county school administrators. Such guidelines may provide that the child day care facility be funded by the parents, the school personnel or parent-teacher associations, the county board of education or any combination of funding, including independent or federal funding sources. Within such guidelines and dependent upon adequate facilities and personnel, any county board of education may extend use of the child day care facility to other than school personnel.
Upon decision by the county board and in accordance with state law, any child care facility operated pursuant to the provisions of this section may be deemed operated by the county for purposes of liability and insurance. Personnel hired therefor may be deemed county school personnel or may be independent contractors pursuant to a management contract entered into between the county board and the child care providers. Any parent-teacher association, school personnel association or other entity involved in implementation of the program may also be party to such contract.
Schools need not be open for any other purpose for such day care centers to operate.
Acts, 1933 Ex. Sess., Ch. 8.
Acts, 1933 Ex. Sess., Ch. 8.
Acts, 1933 Ex. Sess., Ch. 8.
Acts, 1933 Ex. Sess., Ch. 8.
Acts, 1983 Reg. Sess., Ch. 70.
(a) The county board, upon the recommendation of the county superintendent, may employ an assistant whose term of employment may be not less than one nor more than four years: Provided, That his or her term may not extend beyond that of the incumbent county superintendent.
(b) The board may not employ more than one assistant for each two hundred teachers or major fraction thereof.
(c) The county board, upon the recommendation of the county superintendent, is authorized to employ general and special supervisors or directors of instruction and of other educational activities as may be considered necessary.
(d) The employment of the assistant superintendent shall be on a twelve-month basis. The period of employment for all others named herein shall be at the discretion of the county board.
(e) Rules for qualifications of assistant superintendents, and directors and supervisors of instruction and of other educational activities shall be fixed by the state board: Provided, That the qualifications required for any assistant superintendent may not be higher than those required for the county superintendent: Provided, however, That the rules do not affect the status of any incumbent nor his or her right to succeed himself or herself in his or her assigned position.
(f) The county board is authorized to reimburse the employees for their necessary traveling expenses upon presentation of a monthly, itemized, sworn statement approved by the county superintendent.
(g) Any person employed under the foregoing provision of this section, provided he or she holds a valid teacher's certificate, shall be given continuing contract status as a teacher and shall hold that status unless dismissed for statutory reasons.
(h) The job duties of a professional educator employed under the provisions of this section, including a professional educator employed as a "supervisor" or "central office administrator" as defined in section one, article one, chapter eighteen-a of this code, shall include substitute teaching on at least three instructional days each school year: Provided, That the substitute teaching requirement of this subsection does not apply to the superintendent and those who have never held a teaching certificate or an administrative certificate.
For the purpose of this section when an employee shall have attained the age of eighteen years, the said employee may be eligible to participate in the defined group plans.
A county board of education shall have the authority to offer a reward for information leading to the arrest and/or conviction of any person or persons who damage or destroy school property, or who threaten, offer or attempt to do so.
(b) The board of any county has the authority to establish a summer school program utilizing the public school facilities and to charge tuition for students who attend the summer school. The tuition may not exceed in any case the actual cost of operation of the summer school program: Provided, That any deserving pupil whose parents, in the judgment of the board, are unable to pay the tuition, may attend the summer school program at a reduced charge or without charge. The county board may determine the term and curriculum of the summer schools based upon the particular needs of the individual county. The curriculum may include, but is not limited to, remedial instruction, accelerated instruction and the teaching of manual arts. The term of the summer school program may not be established in such a manner as to interfere with the regular school term.
(c) The county boards may employ any certified teacher as teachers for this summer school program. Certified teachers employed by the county board to teach in the summer school program shall be paid an amount to be determined by the county board and shall enter into a contract of employment in such form as is prescribed by the county board: Provided, That teachers who teach summer courses of instruction which are offered for credit and which are taught during the regular school year shall be paid at the same daily rate they would receive if paid in accordance with the then current minimum monthly salary in effect for teachers in that county.
(d) Any funds accruing from the tuitions shall be credited to and expended within the existing framework of the general current expense fund of the county board.
(e) Notwithstanding any other provision of this code to the contrary, the board shall fill professional positions established pursuant to the provisions of this section on the basis of certification and length of time the professional has been employed in the county's summer school program. In the event that no employee who has been previously employed in the summer school program holds a valid certification or licensure, a board shall fill the position as a classroom teaching position in accordance with section seven-a, article four, chapter eighteen-a of this code.
(f) Notwithstanding any other provision of the code to the contrary, the county board may employ school service personnel to perform any related duties outside the regular school term as defined in section eight, article four, chapter eighteen-a of this code. An employee who was employed in any service personnel job or position during the previous summer shall have the option of retaining the job or position if the job or position exists during any succeeding summer. If the employee is unavailable or if the position is newly created, the position shall be filled pursuant to section eight-b, article four, chapter eighteen-a of this code. When any summer employee is absent, qualified regular employees within the same classification category who are not working because their employment term for the school year has ended or has not yet begun the succeeding school employment term, shall be given first opportunity to substitute for the absent summer employee on a rotating and seniority basis. When any summer employee who is employed in a summer position is granted a leave of absence for the summer months, the board shall give regular employment status to the employee for that summer position which shall be filled under the procedure set forth in section eight-b, article four, chapter eighteen-a of this code. The summer employee on leave of absence has the option of returning to that summer position if the position exists the succeeding summer or whenever the position is reestablished if it were abolished. The salary of a summer employee shall be in accordance with the salary schedule of persons regularly employed in the same position in the county where employed and persons employed in those positions are entitled to all rights, privileges and benefits provided in sections five-b, eight, eight-a, ten and fourteen, article four, chapter eighteen-a of this code: Provided, That those persons are not entitled to a minimum employment term of two hundred days for their summer position.
(g) If a county board reduces in force the number of employees to be employed in a particular summer program or classification from the number employed in that position in previous summers, the reductions in force and priority in reemployment to that summer position shall be based upon the length of service time in the particular summer program or classification.
(h) For the purpose of this section, summer employment for service personnel includes, but is not limited to, filling jobs and positions as defined in section eight, article four, chapter eighteen-a of this code and especially established for and which are to be predominantly performed during the summer months to meet the needs of a county board.
(a) No county board of education shall prohibit the use as an educational resource or teaching device any historical document related to the founding of the United States of America or any government publication solely because the document contains a religious reference or references: Provided, That the use of such materials must serve a bona fide secular educational purpose which does not advance or inhibit a religion or particular religious belief.
(b) (1) As used in subsection (a) of this section, the term "historical document related to the founding of the United States of America" shall include, but not be limited to, such documents as the declaration of independence and the United States constitution.
(2) As used in subsection (a) of this section, the term "government publication" shall include, but not be limited to, such documents as decisions of the United States supreme court and acts of Congress.
(c) In determining the purpose of the use of a document containing a reference to a deity or a religion, consideration shall be given to the overall context of the document's use.
(1) The county superintendent, who shall serve as the chair of the county-wide council on productive and safe schools;
(2) One representative from each local school improvement council, to be elected by a majority vote of each local school improvement council;
(3) The prosecuting attorney or his or her designee;
(4) A representative of the department of health and human resources created pursuant to the provisions of section two, article one, chapter five-f of this code, to be appointed in a manner determined by the secretary of the department;
(5) A representative of the law-enforcement agencies situated in the county in which the school is situated to be recommended by the county sheriff;
(6) A representative of the county board of education for the county in which the school is situated to be appointed by the president of the county board of education;
(7) The county board of education's supervisor of transportation; and
(8) A representative of the regional comprehensive behavioral health center as designated by the office of behavioral health services in which the county school system is situated, to be appointed by the executive director of the center.
(9) When the members listed in subdivisions (1) through (8) do not include at least two classroom teachers, then the county superintendent shall appoint additional members so that at least two classroom teachers are members of the county-wide council.
(10) When the members listed in subdivisions (1) through (8) do not include at least two school principals, then the county superintendent shall appoint additional members so that at least two school principals are members of the county-wide council.
(b) The county superintendent shall call an organizational meeting of the council as soon as practicable after the effective date of this section.
(c) On or before the first day of October, one thousand nine hundred ninety-five, the council shall compile the local school improvement council's guidelines developed pursuant to subsection (f), section two, article five-a of this chapter and shall report and deliver such guidelines to the county board of education, along with the council's assessment and recommendations regarding the guidelines. The council also shall provide a report of the estimated cost for any proposed alternative settings or programs.
(d) No meetings of the county-wide council shall be held during instructional time.
county-wide productive and safe school plans to the
West Virginia board of education.
On or before the first day of November, one thousand nine hundred ninety-five, each county board of education shall deliver, together with its assessment, the recommendations and guidelines developed by the county-wide council on productive and safe schools to the West Virginia board of education.
§18-5-44. Early childhood education programs.
(a) For the purposes of this section, an “early childhood education program” means a program created under this section for children who have attained the age of four prior to September 1 of the school year in which the children enter the program.
(b) Findings. –
(1) Among other positive outcomes, early childhood education programs have been determined to:
(A) Improve overall readiness when children enter school;
(B) Decrease behavioral problems;
(C) Improve student attendance;
(D) Increase scores on achievement tests;
(E) Decrease the percentage of students repeating a grade; and
(F) Decrease the number of students placed in special education programs;
(2) Quality early childhood education programs improve school performance and low-quality early childhood education programs may have negative effects, especially for at-risk children;
(3) West Virginia has the lowest percentage of its adult population twenty-five years of age or older with a bachelor’s degree and the education level of parents is a strong indicator of how their children will perform in school;
(4) During the 2006-2007 school year, West Virginia ranked thirty-ninth among the fifty states in the percentage of school children eligible for free and reduced lunches and this percentage is a strong indicator of how the children will perform in school;
(5) For the school year 2008-2009, 13,135 students were enrolled in prekindergarten, a number equal to approximately sixty-three percent of the number of students enrolled in kindergarten;
(6) Excluding projected increases due to increases in enrollment in the early childhood education program, projections indicate that total student enrollment in West Virginia will decline by one percent, or by approximately 2,704 students, by the school year 2012-2013;
(7) In part, because of the dynamics of the state aid formula, county boards will continue to enroll four-year-old students to offset the declining enrollments;
(8) West Virginia has a comprehensive kindergarten program for five-year-olds, but the program was established in a manner that resulted in unequal implementation among the counties, which helped create deficit financial situations for several county boards;
(9) Expansion of current efforts to implement a comprehensive early childhood education program should avoid the problems encountered in kindergarten implementation;
(10) Because of the dynamics of the state aid formula, counties experiencing growth are at a disadvantage in implementing comprehensive early childhood education programs; and
(11) West Virginia citizens will benefit from the establishment of quality comprehensive early childhood education programs.
(c) Beginning no later than the school year 2012-2013 and continuing thereafter, county boards shall provide early childhood education programs for all children who have attained the age of four prior to September 1 of the school year in which the children enter the early childhood education program. Beginning no later than the school year 2016-2017 and continuing thereafter, these early childhood education programs shall provide at least forty-eight thousand minutes annually and no less than fifteen hundred minutes of instruction per week.
(d) The program shall meet the following criteria:
(1) It shall be voluntary, except that, upon enrollment, the provisions of section one-a, article eight of this chapter apply to an enrolled student, subject to subdivision (4) of this subsection;
(2) It shall be open to all children meeting the age requirement set forth in this section;
(3) It shall provide no less than fifteen hundred minutes of instruction per week, in a full day program with at least forty-eight thousand minutes of instruction annually; and
(4) It shall permit a parent of an enrolled child to withdraw the child from that program by notifying the district in writing. A child withdrawn under this section is not subject to the attendance provisions of this chapter until that child again enrolls in a public school in this state.
(e) Enrollment of students in Head Start, or in any other program approved by the state superintendent as provided in this section, may be counted toward satisfying the requirement of subsection (c) of this section.
(f) For the purposes of implementation financing, all counties are encouraged to make use of funds from existing sources, including:
(1) Federal funds provided under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act pursuant to 20 U. S. C. §6301, et seq.;
(2) Federal funds provided for Head Start pursuant to 42 U. S. C. §9831, et seq.;
(3) Federal funds for temporary assistance to needy families pursuant to 42 U. S. C. §601, et seq.;
(4) Funds provided by the School Building Authority pursuant to article nine-d of this chapter;
(5) In the case of counties with declining enrollments, funds from the state aid formula above the amount indicated for the number of students actually enrolled in any school year; and
(6) Any other public or private funds.
(g) Each county board shall develop a plan for implementing the program required by this section. The plan shall include the following elements:
(1) An analysis of the demographics of the county related to early childhood education program implementation;
(2) An analysis of facility and personnel needs;
(3) Financial requirements for implementation and potential sources of funding to assist implementation;
(4) Details of how the county board will cooperate and collaborate with other early childhood education programs including, but not limited to, Head Start, to maximize federal and other sources of revenue;
(5) Specific time lines for implementation; and
(6) Any other items the state board may require by policy.
(h) A county board shall submit its plan to the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Resources. The secretary shall approve the plan if the following conditions are met:
(1) The county board has maximized the use of federal and other available funds for early childhood programs; and
(2) The county board has provided for the maximum implementation of Head Start programs and other public and private programs approved by the state superintendent pursuant to the terms of this section; or
(3) The secretary finds that, if the county board has not met one or more of the requirements of this subsection, the county board has acted in good faith and the failure to comply was not the primary fault of the county board. Any denial by the secretary may be appealed to the circuit court of the county in which the county board is located.
(i) The county board shall submit its plan for approval to the state board. The state board shall approve the plan if the county board has complied substantially with the requirements of subsection (g) of this section and has obtained the approval required in subsection (h) of this section.
(j) Every county board shall submit its plan for reapproval by the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Resources and by the state board at least every two years after the initial approval of the plan and until full implementation of the early childhood education program in the county. As part of the submission, the county board shall provide a detailed statement of the progress made in implementing its plan. The standards and procedures provided for the original approval of the plan apply to any reapproval.
(k) A county board may not increase the total number of students enrolled in the county in an early childhood program until its program is approved by the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Resources and the state board.
(l) The state board annually may grant a county board a waiver for total or partial implementation if the state board finds that all of the following conditions exist:
(1) The county board is unable to comply either because:
(A) It does not have sufficient facilities available; or
(B) It does not and has not had available funds sufficient to implement the program;
(2) The county has not experienced a decline in enrollment at least equal to the total number of students to be enrolled; and
(3) Other agencies of government have not made sufficient funds or facilities available to assist in implementation.
Any county board seeking a waiver shall apply with the supporting data to meet the criteria for which they are eligible on or before March 25 for the following school year. The state superintendent shall grant or deny the requested waiver on or before April 15 of that same year.
(m) The provisions of subsections (b), (c) and (d), section eighteen of this article relating to kindergarten apply to early childhood education programs in the same manner in which they apply to kindergarten programs.
(n) Except as required by federal law or regulation, no county board may enroll students who will be less than four years of age prior to September 1 for the year they enter school.
(o) Neither the state board nor the state department may provide any funds to any county board for the purpose of implementing this section unless the county board has a plan approved pursuant to subsections (h), (i) and (j) of this section.
(p) 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 purposes of implementing the provisions of this section. The state board shall consult with the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Resources in the preparation of the rule. The rule shall contain the following:
(1) Standards for curriculum;
(2) Standards for preparing students;
(3) Attendance requirements;
(4) Standards for personnel; and
(5) Any other terms necessary to implement the provisions of this section.
(q) The rule shall include the following elements relating to curriculum standards:
(1) A requirement that the curriculum be designed to address the developmental needs of four-year-old children consistent with prevailing research on how children learn;
(2) A requirement that the curriculum be designed to achieve long-range goals for the social, emotional, physical and academic development of young children;
(3) A method for including a broad range of content that is relevant, engaging and meaningful to young children;
(4) A requirement that the curriculum incorporate a wide variety of learning experiences, materials and equipment, and instructional strategies to respond to differences in prior experience, maturation rates and learning styles that young children bring to the classroom;
(5) A requirement that the curriculum be designed to build on what children already know in order to consolidate their learning and foster their acquisition of new concepts and skills;
(6) A requirement that the curriculum meet the recognized standards of the relevant subject matter disciplines;
(7) A requirement that the curriculum engage children actively in the learning process and provide them with opportunities to make meaningful choices;
(8) A requirement that the curriculum emphasize the development of thinking, reasoning, decision-making and problem-solving skills;
(9) A set of clear guidelines for communicating with parents and involving them in decisions about the instructional needs of their children; and
(10) A systematic plan for evaluating program success in meeting the needs of young children and for helping them to be ready to succeed in school.
(r) After the school year 2012-2013, on or before July 1 of each year, each county board shall report the following information to the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Resources and the state superintendent:
(1) Documentation indicating the extent to which county boards are maximizing resources by using the existing capacity of community-based programs, including, but not limited to, Head Start and child care; and
(2) For those county boards that are including eligible children attending approved, contracted community-based programs in their net enrollment for the purposes of calculating state aid pursuant to article nine-a of this chapter, documentation that the county board is equitably distributing funding for all children regardless of setting.
(a) As used in this section:
(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 amount of hours provided by state board rule;
(B) Instructional time is used for instruction and cocurricular activities; and
(C) Other criteria as the state board determines appropriate.
(2) "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 shall provide for one hundred eighty separate instructional days.
(c) The county board shall provide a school term for its schools that contains the following:
(1) An employment term that excludes Saturdays and Sundays and consists of at least two hundred days, which need not be successive. The beginning and closing dates of the employment term may not exceed forty-eight weeks;
(2) Within the employment term, an instructional term for students of no less than one hundred eighty separate instructional days, which includes an inclement weather and emergencies plan designed to guarantee an instructional term for students of no less than one hundred eighty separate instructional days;
(3) Within the employment term, noninstructional days shall total twenty and shall be comprised of the following:
(A) Seven paid holidays;
(B) Election day as specified in section two, article five, chapter eighteen-a of this code;
(C) Six days to be designated by the county board to be used by the employees outside the school environment, with at least four outside the school environment days scheduled to occur after the one hundred and thirtieth instructional day of the school calendar; and
(D) The remaining days to be designated by the county board for purposes to include, but not be limited to:
(i) Curriculum development;
(ii) Preparation for opening and closing school;
(iii) Professional development;
(iv) Teacher-pupil-parent conferences;
(v) Professional meetings;
(vi) Making up days when instruction was scheduled but not conducted; and
(vii) At least four two-hour blocks of time for faculty senate meetings with each two-hour block of time scheduled once at least every forty-five instructional days; and
(4) Scheduled out-of-calendar days that are to be used for instructional days in the event school is canceled for any reason.
(d) A county board of education shall develop a policy that requires additional minutes of instruction in the school day or additional days of instruction to recover time lost due to late arrivals and early dismissals.
(e) If it is not possible to complete one hundred eighty separate instructional days with the current school calendar, the county board shall schedule instruction on any available noninstructional day, regardless of the purpose for which the day originally was scheduled, or an out-of-calendar day and the day will be used for instruction of students: Provided, That the provisions of this subsection do not apply to:
(B) Election day;
(C) Saturdays and Sundays.
(f) The instructional term shall commence and terminate on a date selected by the county board.
(g) The state board may not schedule the primary statewide assessment program more than thirty days prior to the end of the instructional year unless the state board determines that the nature of the test mandates an earlier testing date.
(h) 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 requirements or restrictions the state board may provide in the rule required to be promulgated by this section.
(i) Extracurricular activities may not be used for instructional time.
(j) Noninstructional interruptions to the instructional day shall be minimized to allow the classroom teacher to teach.
(k) 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.
(l) In formulation of a school's calendar, a county school board shall hold at least two public meetings that allow parents, teachers, teacher organizations, businesses and other interested parties within the county to discuss the school calendar. The public notice of the date, time and place of the public hearing must be published in a local newspaper of general circulation in the area as a Class II legal advertisement, in accordance with the provisions of article three, chapter fifty-nine of this code.
(m) The county board may contract with all or part of the personnel for a longer term of employment.
(n) 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.
(o) Notwithstanding any provision of this code to the contrary, the state board may grant a waiver to a county board for its noncompliance with provisions of chapter eighteen, eighteen-a, eighteen-b and eighteen-c of this code to maintain compliance in reaching the mandatory one hundred eighty separate instructional days established in this section.
(p) 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.
(q) The amendments to this section during the 2013 regular session of the Legislature shall be effective for school years beginning on or after July 1, 2014, and the provisions of this section existing immediately prior to the 2013 regular session of the Legislature remain in effect for school years beginning prior to July 1, 2014.
(1) The building is within the identified special flood hazard area which is the area on a flood hazard boundary map or a flood insurance rate map that is identified as an "A zone", a numbered "A zone" or an "AE zone" or regulatory one hundred year floodplain and the building has a replacement value that is greater than three hundred thousand dollars; or
(2) The building has been damaged in a previous flood and flood insurance is required by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
(b) Each county board also shall maintain flood insurance on the contents of each insurable building that it owns and that meets one or both of the requirements set forth in subsection (a) of this section.
(c) The buildings and the contents of those buildings required to be insured by this section shall be insured at the maximum amounts available through the National Flood Insurance Program or the estimated replacement value of the structure and contents, whichever is less.
(1) "Energy-conservation measures" means goods or services, or both, to reduce energy consumption operating costs of school facilities. These include, but are not limited to, installation of two or more of the following:
(A) Insulation of a building structure and systems within a building;
(B) Storm windows or doors, caulking or weather stripping, multi-glazed windows or doors, heat-absorbing or heat-reflective glazed and coated window or door systems or other window or door modifications that reduce energy consumption;
(C) Automatic energy control systems;
(D) Heating, ventilating or air conditioning systems, including modifications or replacements;
(E) Replacement or modification of lighting fixtures to increase energy efficiency;
(F) Energy recovery systems;
(G) Co-generation systems that produce steam or another form of energy for use by the county board of education in a building or complex of buildings owned by the Board of Education; or
(H) Energy-conservation maintenance measures that provide long-term operating cost reductions of the building's present cost of operation.
(2) "Energy-savings contract" means a contract for the evaluation and recommendation of energy operations conservation measures and for implementation of one or more such measures. The contract shall provide that payments, except obligations upon termination of the contract before its expiration, are to be made over time. A county board of education may supplement these payments with federal, state or local funds to reduce the annual cost or to lower the initial amount to be financed.
(3) "Qualified provider" means a person, firm or corporation experienced in the design, implementation and installation of energy-conservation measures.
(b) County boards of education are hereby authorized to enter into performance-based contracts with qualified providers of energy-conservation measures for the purpose of reducing energy operating costs of school buildings.
(c) A board of education may enter into an energy-savings contract with a qualified provider to significantly reduce energy operating costs. Before entering into such a contract or before the installation of equipment, modifications or remodeling to be furnished under such a contract, the qualified provider shall first issue a proposal summarizing the scope of work to be performed. Such a proposal shall contain estimates of all costs of installation, modifications or remodeling including the costs of design, engineering, installation, maintenance, repairs or debt service as well as estimates of the amounts by which energy operating costs will be reduced. If the board finds, after receiving the proposal, that the proposal includes more than one energy-conservation measure designed to save energy operating costs, the board may enter into a contract with the provider pursuant to this section.
(d) An energy-savings contract shall include the following:
(1) A guarantee of a specific minimum amount of money that the board will save in energy operating costs each year during the term of the contract; and
(2) A statement of all costs of energy-conservation measures including the costs of design, engineering, installation, maintenance, repairs and operations.
(e) An energy-savings contract which is performance-based and includes a guarantee of savings and a comprehensive approach of energy-conservation measures for improving comfort is subject to competitive bidding requirements. The requirements of article five-a, chapter twenty-one of this code as to prevailing wage rates shall apply to the construction and installation work performed under such a contract.
(f) A board may enter into a "lease with an option to purchase" contract for the purchase and installation of energy-conservation measures if the term of the lease does not exceed fifteen years and the lease contract includes the provisions hereinafter contained in subsection (g) and meets federal tax requirements for tax-exempt municipal leasing or long-term financing.
(g) An energy-savings contract may extend beyond the fiscal year in which it first becomes effective except that such a contract may not exceed a fifteen-year term and shall be void unless such agreement provides the board the option to terminate the agreement during each fiscal year of the contract. The board may include in its annual budget for each fiscal year any amounts payable under long-term energy-savings contracts during that fiscal year.
(h) Nothing contained in this section requires or permits the
replacement of jobs performed by service personnel employed by the
local school board pursuant to sections eight and eight-a, article
four, chapter eighteen-a of the code, as amended.
Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2016 Regular Session
The West Virginia Code Online is an unofficial copy of the annotated WV Code, provided as a convenience. It has NOT been edited for publication, and is not in any way official or authoritative.