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Senate Bill 1162

Senate Bill sb1162er

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  1                                 

  2         An act relating to education; amending s.

  3         229.001, F.S.; revising a short title to delete

  4         obsolete language; amending s. 229.002, F.S.;

  5         revising the policy and guiding principles of

  6         the Legislature relating to education

  7         governance; amending s. 229.003, F.S.; revising

  8         the timeframe for education governance

  9         reorganization; revising the titles of the

10         education governance officers and providing for

11         appointment by the Florida Board of Education;

12         revising the name of the Florida On-Line High

13         School to conform with changes made by the

14         bill; revising the membership of university

15         boards of trustees and making appointees

16         subject to Senate confirmation; abolishing the

17         Board of Regents, the State Board of Community

18         Colleges, and the Postsecondary Education

19         Planning Commission; transferring the powers,

20         duties, functions, records, personnel,

21         property, unexpended balances of

22         appropriations, allocations, other funds,

23         administrative authority, administrative rules,

24         pending issues, and existing contracts of the

25         Board of Regents to the Florida Board of

26         Education, of the State Board of Community

27         Colleges to the Florida Board of Education, and

28         of the Postsecondary Education Planning

29         Commission to the Council for Education Policy

30         Research and Improvement, respectively;

31         creating the Council for Education Policy


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  1         Research and Improvement under the Office of

  2         Legislative Services; transferring the

  3         Articulation Coordinating Committee and the

  4         Education Standards Commission by type two

  5         transfer from the Department of Education to

  6         the Florida Board of Education; requiring the

  7         Commissioner of Education and the Secretary of

  8         the Florida Board of Education to commence

  9         reorganization of the department and specifying

10         offices and divisions; requiring the merger of

11         the powers, duties, and staffs of the State

12         Board of Independent Colleges and Universities

13         and the State Board of Nonpublic Career

14         Education, with an exception, into a single

15         Commission for Independent Education; creating

16         s. 229.0031, F.S.; creating the Council for

17         Education Policy Research and Improvement;

18         providing duties of the council; providing for

19         administrative functions; providing membership;

20         providing for an executive director; amending

21         s. 229.004, F.S.; revising the timeframe for

22         the creation of the Florida Board of Education;

23         deleting the requirement that the board be part

24         time; revising the duties and responsibilities

25         of the board; conforming terminology with

26         changes made by the bill; providing cross

27         references to newly created missions and goals

28         and guidelines; amending s. 229.005, F.S.;

29         revising provisions relating to qualifications

30         of Florida education governance officers to

31         conform terminology to changes made by the bill


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  1         and to provide cross references to newly

  2         created missions and goals; requiring the

  3         Commissioner of Education to work with the

  4         board and its secretary to oversee the

  5         chancellors and the executive director;

  6         deleting references to requirements of the

  7         Florida Constitution relating to education;

  8         requiring the Chancellor of Public Schools, the

  9         Chancellor of Colleges and Universities, the

10         Chancellor of Community Colleges, and the

11         Executive Director of Independent Education to

12         work as division vice presidents of the

13         seamless K-20 education system; revising the

14         name of the Florida On-Line High School to

15         conform with changes made by the bill; amending

16         s. 229.006, F.S.; deleting obsolete language

17         relating to the creation and

18         already-accomplished duties of the Education

19         Governance Reorganization Transition Task

20         Force; revising the timeframe for the

21         reorganization; requiring the task force to

22         provide guidance and monitoring of the

23         reorganization implementation process and to

24         report to the Governor, the Legislature, the

25         Secretary of the Florida Board of Education,

26         and the public on its progress; revising the

27         timeframe and recipients of the final report of

28         the task force; creating s. 229.0061, F.S.;

29         establishing guidelines for the implementation,

30         structure, functions, and organization of

31         Florida's K-20 education system; creating s.


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  1         229.007, F.S.; establishing Florida's K-20

  2         education performance accountability system;

  3         providing legislative intent; providing for

  4         recommendations for performance-based funding;

  5         establishing mission, goals, and systemwide

  6         measures; creating s. 229.0072, F.S.;

  7         establishing a reorganization implementation

  8         process; requiring the Governor to appoint

  9         university boards of trustees, a Florida Board

10         of Education, and a Secretary of the Florida

11         Board of Education; specifying duties of the

12         Secretary of the Florida Board of Education;

13         establishing duties of the Florida Board of

14         Education relating to the transition and

15         implementation of the K-20 system; requiring

16         the Florida Board of Education to appoint

17         advisory boards and to develop and recommend a

18         new School Code; requiring the Commissioner of

19         Education to work with the Florida Board of

20         Education and its secretary to achieve full

21         implementation of the seamless K-20 system and

22         to commence reorganization of the department as

23         required by the act; creating s. 229.0073,

24         F.S.; establishing the Education Reorganization

25         Workgroup to direct and oversee reorganization

26         of the Department of Education; providing

27         requirements for reorganization to include the

28         establishment of offices, divisions, and a

29         leadership team; providing duties of the

30         offices; transferring the SMART Schools

31         Clearinghouse to the Office of Educational


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  1         Facilities and SMART Schools Clearinghouse

  2         within the Office of the Commissioner of

  3         Education; creating s. 229.0074, F.S.;

  4         establishing the mission of the Division of

  5         Independent Education; providing for membership

  6         and duties of the executive director; combining

  7         and transferring the powers and duties of the

  8         State Board of Independent Colleges and

  9         Universities and the State Board of Nonpublic

10         Career Education, with an exception, to the

11         Commission for Independent Education; providing

12         for membership and duties of the commission;

13         providing that the Florida Education Governance

14         Reorganization Implementation Act does not

15         authorize further regulation of independent

16         schools or home education programs; creating s.

17         229.008, F.S.; providing for establishment and

18         membership of boards of trustees of

19         universities in the State University System;

20         providing for protections from civil liability;

21         creating s. 229.0081, F.S.; establishing powers

22         and duties of university boards of trustees;

23         creating s. 229.0082, F.S.; establishing powers

24         and duties of university presidents;

25         transferring the Florida Partnership for School

26         Readiness from the Executive Office of the

27         Governor to the Agency for Workforce

28         Innovation; transferring the Child Care

29         Executive Partnership Program, child care and

30         early childhood resource and referral, and the

31         subsidized child care program, including


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  1         statewide staff, to the Agency for Workforce

  2         Innovation; transferring the prekindergarten

  3         early intervention, migrant prekindergarten,

  4         and Florida First Start programs, including

  5         statewide staff, to the Agency for Workforce

  6         Innovation; designating the Agency for

  7         Workforce Innovation as lead agency for

  8         specified federal purposes; amending s. 411.01,

  9         F.S.; providing legislative intent with respect

10         to the School Readiness Act; providing for the

11         addition of members to the Florida Partnership

12         for School Readiness; providing duties of the

13         Florida Partnership for School Readiness;

14         deleting obsolete language and conforming

15         provisions; revising procedures for funding

16         school readiness programs; requiring the

17         implementation of a school readiness uniform

18         screening; providing for the development of

19         minimum child care licensing standards;

20         amending s. 216.136, F.S.; deleting certain

21         duties of the Social Services Estimating

22         Conference to conform; adding staff of the

23         Agency for Workforce Innovation to the School

24         Readiness Program Estimating Conference;

25         amending ss. 232.01 and 445.023, F.S.;

26         conforming language and correcting cross

27         references; effective January 1, 2002,

28         repealing ss. 228.061(1) and (2), 230.23(4)(o),

29         230.2303, 230.2305, and 230.2306, F.S.,

30         relating to preschool and prekindergarten early

31         intervention programs in the public schools,


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  1         school board provision of early childhood and

  2         basic skills development, the Florida First

  3         Start Program, the prekindergarten early

  4         intervention program, and prekindergarten

  5         children service needs assessments; effective

  6         January 1, 2002, repealing ss. 402.28,

  7         402.281(1), 402.3015, 402.3027, 402.3028,

  8         402.305(18), 402.3052, 402.3135(2)(c), and

  9         402.45(2) and (6), F.S., relating to Child Care

10         Plus, the Gold Seal Quality Care program rating

11         system, the subsidized child care program,

12         observation and assessment of young children in

13         subsidized child care programs, referral for

14         assessment, the child care technical review

15         panel, the child development associate training

16         grants program, provision of assistance to

17         Child Care Plus facilities, and certain

18         requirements for the community resource mother

19         or father program; effective January 1, 2002,

20         repealing ss. 391.304(1)(a) and 411.222, F.S.,

21         relating to Department of Health coordination

22         with the Department of Education and specified

23         councils and the State Coordinating Council for

24         School Readiness Programs; amending s. 228.082,

25         F.S.; revising the name of the Florida On-Line

26         High School to the Florida Virtual High School,

27         which school shall be housed within the

28         Commissioner of Education's Office of

29         Technology and Information Services and

30         monitored by the commissioner; stating the

31         mission of the Florida Virtual High School;


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  1         deleting obsolete language; revising the duties

  2         of the school's board of trustees; requiring

  3         the Department of Education to maximize federal

  4         indirect cost allowed on federal grants;

  5         requiring appropriation for expenditure of

  6         funds received from indirect cost allowance;

  7         effective June 30, 2002, repealing s. 229.8065,

  8         F.S., relating to expenditures for the Knott

  9         Data Center and projects, contracts, and grants

10         programs; amending s. 229.085, F.S.; removing

11         an exemption for personnel employed by projects

12         funded by contracts and grants; amending s.

13         240.205, F.S.; deleting provisions relating to

14         certain contractual obligations of the Board of

15         Regents; repealing s. 235.217(1)(b), (c), and

16         (d), (2), (3)(a), (c), (d), and (e), (4), and

17         (5), F.S., relating to membership and certain

18         duties of the SMART Schools Clearinghouse;

19         repealing ss. 240.145, 240.147, 240.209(2),

20         240.227, 240.307, and 240.311(4), F.S.,

21         relating to the Postsecondary Education

22         Planning Commission, the powers and duties of

23         the commission, the Board of Regents

24         appointment of a Chancellor of the State

25         University System, powers and duties of

26         university presidents, the appointment of

27         members of the State Board of Community

28         Colleges, and the appointment of an executive

29         director of the community college system;

30         amending s. 240.3836, F.S.; revising provisions

31         relating to access to baccalaureate degree


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  1         programs; providing a process for authorizing

  2         community colleges to offer baccalaureate

  3         degree programs; amending s. 240.2011, F.S.;

  4         adding New College of Florida in Sarasota

  5         County to the State University System; creating

  6         fiscally autonomous campuses of the University

  7         of South Florida; amending s. 240.527, F.S.;

  8         requiring a Campus Board of the University of

  9         South Florida St. Petersburg; requiring

10         separate accreditation; providing powers and

11         duties of the Campus Board and the Campus

12         Executive Officer; providing a procedure for

13         preparing a budget request; providing for

14         central support services contracts and a letter

15         of agreement; excluding certain entities from

16         certain provisions; requiring a Campus Board of

17         the University of South Florida

18         Sarasota/Manatee; authorizing separate

19         accreditation; providing powers and duties of

20         the Campus Board and the Campus Executive

21         Officer; providing a procedure for preparing a

22         budget request; providing for central support

23         services contracts and a letter of agreement;

24         establishing a mission, goals, and board of

25         trustees for New College of Florida; providing

26         for accreditation; redesignating St. Petersburg

27         Junior College as St. Petersburg College;

28         requiring accreditation; providing a mission;

29         providing for students and fees; providing

30         conditional authority to offer baccalaureate

31         degree level programs; authorizing certain


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  1         baccalaureate degree programs and a process for

  2         increasing their number; establishing a

  3         governing board and a coordinating board;

  4         providing for dispute resolution; providing for

  5         certain employment classifications; providing

  6         for the acquisition of land, buildings, and

  7         equipment; authorizing the power of eminent

  8         domain; providing for state funding; requiring

  9         a cost study; providing for the Florida Bright

10         Futures Scholarship Testing Program; requiring

11         the Articulation Coordinating Committee to

12         identify scores, credit, and courses for which

13         credit may be awarded for specified

14         examinations; requiring the completion of

15         examinations for receipt of certain awards;

16         providing requirements with respect to the

17         award of credit; requiring annual reporting of

18         the effectiveness of the program; reenacting

19         and amending s. 240.551, F.S.; revising

20         provisions with respect to the Florida Prepaid

21         College Program; revising provisions with

22         respect to transfer and refund provisions;

23         revising provisions relating to appointment of

24         directors of the direct-support organization;

25         authorizing the purchase of advance payment

26         contracts for scholarships by nonprofit

27         organizations; providing effective dates.

28  

29         WHEREAS, in response to Floridians' amendment of s. 2,

30  Art. IX of the State Constitution requiring a seven-member

31  state board of education appointed by the Governor to


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  1  staggered 4-year terms, subject to confirmation by the Senate,

  2  which "shall appoint the commissioner of education," the 2000

  3  Legislature enacted the "Florida Education Governance

  4  Reorganization Act of 2000" (chapter 2000-321, Laws of

  5  Florida), and

  6         WHEREAS, the Florida Education Governance

  7  Reorganization Act of 2000 provided legislative policy and

  8  guiding principles for a seamless kindergarten through

  9  postgraduate education system; provided for the future repeal

10  of existing education entities and statutes; provided for

11  boards of trustees for each university in the State University

12  System; provided for the establishment and duties of the

13  Florida Board of Education and specified education governance

14  officers; and established the Education Governance

15  Reorganization Transition Task Force charged with the duty to

16  make recommendations to the Legislature, pursuant to a

17  legislatively established timeline, to accomplish a smooth and

18  orderly transition to the new education system, and

19         WHEREAS, the Education Governance Reorganization

20  Transition Task Force was timely appointed and has been

21  aggressively pursuing its statutory duties by holding meetings

22  and public hearings throughout the state, consulting with

23  education stakeholders and national experts, taking public

24  testimony, and working to expedite its recommendations, NOW,

25  THEREFORE,

26  

27  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:

28  

29         Section 1.  Section 229.001, Florida Statutes, is

30  amended to read:

31  


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  1         229.001  Short title.--This act may be cited as the

  2  "Florida Education Governance Reorganization Implementation

  3  Act of 2000."

  4         Section 2.  Section 229.002, Florida Statutes, is

  5  amended to read:

  6         229.002  Declaration of policy and guiding

  7  principles.--

  8         (1)  It is the policy of the Legislature:

  9         (a)  To achieve within existing resources true systemic

10  change in education governance by establishing a seamless

11  academic educational system that fosters an integrated

12  continuum of kindergarten through graduate school education

13  for Florida's citizens.

14         (b)  To promote enhanced academic success and funding

15  efficiency by centralizing the governance of educational

16  delivery systems and aligning responsibility with

17  accountability.

18         (c)  To provide consistent education policy vertically

19  and horizontally across all educational delivery systems,

20  focusing on students the needs of those receiving education,

21  not those providing education.

22         (d)  To provide substantially improved vertical and

23  horizontal articulation across all educational delivery

24  systems while ensuring that nonpublic education institutions

25  and home education programs maintain their independence,

26  autonomy, and nongovernmental status.

27         (e)  To provide for devolution of authority to the

28  schools, community colleges, universities, and other education

29  institutions that are the actual deliverers of educational

30  services in order to provide student-centered education

31  


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  1  services within the clear parameters of the overarching

  2  education policy established by the Legislature.

  3         (f)  To ensure that independent education institutions

  4  and home education programs maintain their independence,

  5  autonomy, and nongovernmental status.

  6         (2)  The guiding principles for Florida's new education

  7  governance are:

  8         (a)  A coordinated, seamless system for kindergarten

  9  through graduate school education.

10         (b)  A system that is student-centered in every facet.

11         (c)  A system that maximizes education access and

12  provides the opportunity for a high-quality education academic

13  success for all Floridians.

14         (d)  A system that safeguards equity and supports

15  academic excellence.

16         (e)  A system that provides for local operational

17  flexibility while promoting accountability for student

18  achievement and improvement refuses to compromise academic

19  excellence.

20         Section 3.  Section 229.003, Florida Statutes, is

21  amended to read:

22         229.003  Florida education governance reorganization.--

23         (1)  Effective January 7, 2003, The Florida Board of

24  Education, created pursuant to s. 229.004, shall be

25  responsible for overseeing kindergarten through graduate

26  school education, in accordance with the implementation

27  process in s. 229.0072 and the policies and guiding principles

28  in s. 229.002 and the mission and goals of s. 229.007.

29         (2)  Effective January 7, 2003, the Florida Board of

30  Education shall appoint the Commissioner of Education.

31  


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  1         (2)(3)  Effective January 7, 2003, There are is

  2  established the following education governance officers in

  3  addition to the Commissioner of Education:

  4         (a)  A Chancellor of Public Schools K-12 Education

  5  appointed by the Commissioner of Education.

  6         (b)  A Chancellor of Colleges and State Universities,

  7  appointed by the Commissioner of Education.

  8         (c)  A Chancellor of Community Colleges and Career

  9  Preparation, appointed by the Commissioner of Education.

10         (d)  An Executive Director of Independent Nonpublic and

11  Nontraditional Education, appointed by the Commissioner of

12  Education.

13  

14  Each chancellor and the executive director shall be appointed

15  subject to confirmation by the Florida Board of Education and

16  shall serve at the pleasure and under the authority of the

17  Secretary of the Florida Board of Education Commissioner of

18  Education.

19         (3)(4)  Effective July 1, 2000, The Governor shall

20  appoint a seven-member board of trustees for the Florida

21  Virtual On-Line High School, which shall be a body corporate

22  with all the powers of a body corporate.

23         (4)(5)  Effective January 7, 2003, The Governor shall

24  appoint for each university in the State University System, a

25  12-member nine-member board of trustees, which shall be a body

26  corporate with all the powers of a body corporate. In addition

27  to the 12 members, a student body president shall serve as a

28  voting member of the board of trustees. There shall be no

29  state residency requirement for university board members, but

30  the Governor shall consider diversity and regional

31  representation. Each appointee is subject to confirmation by


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  1  the Senate in the regular legislative session immediately

  2  following his or her appointment All members of the board of

  3  trustees of Florida Atlantic University must reside within the

  4  service area of the university; three must be residents of

  5  Broward County, three must be residents of Palm Beach County,

  6  and three may be residents of any county within the service

  7  area.

  8         (5)  Effective July 1, 2001:

  9         (a)  The Board of Regents is abolished.

10         (b)  All of the powers, duties, functions, records,

11  personnel, and property; unexpended balances of

12  appropriations, allocations, and other funds; administrative

13  authority; administrative rules; pending issues; and existing

14  contracts of the Board of Regents are transferred by a type

15  two transfer, pursuant to s. 20.06(2), to the Florida Board of

16  Education.

17         (c)  The State Board of Community Colleges is

18  abolished.

19         (d)  All of the powers, duties, functions, records,

20  personnel, and property; unexpended balances of

21  appropriations, allocations, and other funds; administrative

22  authority; administrative rules; pending issues; and existing

23  contracts of the State Board of Community Colleges are

24  transferred by a type two transfer, pursuant to s. 20.06(2),

25  from the Department of Education to the Florida Board of

26  Education.

27         (e)  The Postsecondary Education Planning Commission is

28  abolished.

29         (f)  The Council for Education Policy Research and

30  Improvement is created as an independent office under the

31  Office of Legislative Services.


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  1         (g)  All personnel, unexpended balances of

  2  appropriations, and allocations of the Postsecondary Education

  3  Planning Commission are transferred to the Council for

  4  Education Policy Research and Improvement.

  5         (h)  The Articulation Coordinating Committee and the

  6  Education Standards Commission are transferred by a type two

  7  transfer, pursuant to s. 20.06(2), from the Department of

  8  Education to the Florida Board of Education.

  9         (i)  Notwithstanding the provisions of s. 20.15, the

10  Commissioner of Education and the Secretary of the Florida

11  Board of Education shall work together to commence the

12  reorganization of the Department of Education in accordance

13  with s. 229.0073, which shall include an Office of the

14  Commissioner of Education comprised of the general areas of

15  operation that are common to all delivery sectors and, in

16  addition, shall include:

17         1.  The creation of an Office of Technology and

18  Information Services, an Office of Workforce and Economic

19  Development, an Office of Educational Facilities and SMART

20  Schools Clearinghouse, and an Office of Student Financial

21  Assistance.

22         2.  The creation of a Division of Colleges and

23  Universities.

24         3.  The creation of a Division of Community Colleges.

25         4.  The creation of a Division of Public Schools.

26         5.  The creation of a Division of Independent

27  Education.

28         6.  The merger of the powers, duties, and staffs of the

29  State Board of Independent Colleges and Universities and the

30  State Board of Nonpublic Career Education, except as relating

31  to any independent nonprofit college or university whose


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  1  students are eligible to receive the William L. Boyd, IV,

  2  Florida resident access grants pursuant to s. 240.605, into a

  3  single Commission for Independent Education administratively

  4  housed within the Division of Independent Education.

  5         (6)  Effective January 7, 2003, the powers and duties

  6  of the following entities are relocated to the Florida Board

  7  of Education, which shall retain all related funding and

  8  budget authority for purposes of a single, seamless

  9  kindergarten through graduate school education system and

10  single or coordinated budget and may retain or redistribute

11  the powers and duties of each entity in accordance with the

12  policies and guiding principles of s. 229.002, and the

13  entities shall cease to exist:

14         (a)  The Board of Regents.

15         (b)  The State Board of Community Colleges.

16         (c)  The State Board of Independent Colleges and

17  Universities.

18         (d)  The State Board of Nonpublic Career Education.

19         (e)  The Division of Workforce Development of the

20  Department of Education.

21         (f)  The Postsecondary Education Planning Commission.

22         (g)  The Articulation Coordination Committee.

23         (h)  The Division of Human Resource Development of the

24  Department of Education.

25         (i)  The Division of Support Services of the Department

26  of Education.

27         (j)  The Division of Administration of the Department

28  of Education.

29         (k)  The Division of Financial Services of the

30  Department of Education.

31  


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  1         (l)  The Division of Technology of the Department of

  2  Education.

  3         (m)  The Office of Student Financial Assistance of the

  4  Department of Education.

  5         (n)  The Division of Universities of the Department of

  6  Education.

  7         (o)  The Division of Community Colleges of the

  8  Department of Education.

  9         Section 4.  Section 229.0031, Florida Statutes, is

10  created to read:

11         229.0031  Council for Education Policy Research and

12  Improvement.--Effective July 1, 2001, the  Council for

13  Education Policy Research and Improvement is created as an

14  independent office under the Office of Legislative Services,

15  pursuant to s. 11.147. The council shall conduct and review

16  education research, provide independent analysis on education

17  progress, and provide independent evaluation of education

18  issues of statewide concern. The Office of Legislative

19  Services shall provide administrative functions of the

20  council, pursuant to joint policies of the Legislature.

21         (1)  The council shall serve as a citizen board for

22  independent policy research and analysis. The council shall be

23  composed of five members appointed by the Governor, two

24  members appointed by the Speaker of the House of

25  Representatives, and two members appointed by the President of

26  the Senate. Each member shall be appointed for a term of 6

27  years. However, for purposes of continuity, the Governor shall

28  appoint two members, the Speaker of the House of

29  Representatives shall appoint one member, and the President of

30  the Senate shall appoint one member for a first term of 4

31  years. Members appointed for 4 years may be reappointed to one


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  1  additional term. Members shall not include elected officials

  2  or employees of public or independent education entities.

  3  Members who miss two consecutive meetings may be replaced by

  4  the appointing officer.

  5         (2)  The council shall meet as often as it considers

  6  necessary to carry out its duties and responsibilities.

  7  Members shall be paid travel and per diem expenses as provided

  8  in s. 112.061 while performing their duties under this

  9  section.

10         (3)  The council shall appoint an executive director,

11  who shall serve at the pleasure of the council and shall

12  perform the duties assigned to him or her by the council. The

13  executive director is the chief administrative officer of the

14  council and shall appoint all employees and staff members of

15  the council, who shall serve under the executive director's

16  direction and control.

17         (4)  The council shall:

18         (a)  Provide state policymakers, educators, and the

19  public with objective and timely information that supports the

20  seamless K-20 education system and the K-20 education

21  accountability process designed to provide all students an

22  opportunity for a high-quality education, in accordance with

23  the policies and guiding principles of s. 229.002 and the

24  performance accountability system in s. 229.007.

25         (b)  Explore national and state emerging educational

26  issues and examine how these issues should be addressed by

27  education institutions in Florida.

28         (c)  Prepare and submit to the Florida Board of

29  Education a long-range master plan for education. The plan

30  must include consideration of the promotion of quality,

31  fundamental educational goals, programmatic access, needs for


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  1  remedial education, regional and state economic development,

  2  international education programs, demographic patterns,

  3  student demand for programs, needs of particular subgroups of

  4  the population, implementation of innovative educational

  5  techniques and technology, and requirements of the labor

  6  market. The plan must evaluate the capacity of existing

  7  programs in public and independent institutions to respond to

  8  identified needs, and the council shall recommend efficient

  9  alternatives to address unmet needs. The council shall update

10  the master plan at least every 5 years.

11         (d)  Prepare and submit for approval by the Florida

12  Board of Education a long-range performance plan for K-20

13  education in Florida, and annually review and recommend

14  improvement in the implementation of the plan.

15         (e)  Annually report on the progress of public schools

16  and postsecondary education institutions toward meeting

17  educational goals and standards as defined by s. 229.007.

18         (f)  Recommend to the Legislature and the Florida Board

19  of Education legislation and rules for the educational

20  accountability system that support the policies and guiding

21  principles of s. 229.002.

22         (g)  Recommend to the Florida Board of Education

23  revisions and new initiatives to further improve the K-20

24  education accountability system.

25         (h)  Provide public education institutions and the

26  public with information on the K-20 education accountability

27  system, recommend refinements and improvements, and evaluate

28  issues pertaining to student learning gains.

29         (i)  On its own initiative or in response to the

30  Governor, the Legislature, the Florida Board of Education, or

31  


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  1  the Commissioner of Education, issue reports and

  2  recommendations on matters relating to any education sector.

  3         (j)  By January 1, 2003, and on a 3-year cycle

  4  thereafter, review and make recommendations to the Legislature

  5  regarding the activities of research centers and institutes

  6  supported with state funds to assess the return on the state's

  7  investment in research conducted by public postsecondary

  8  education institutions, in coordination with the Leadership

  9  Board for Applied Research and Public Service, created

10  pursuant to s. 240.706.

11         (k)  Apply for and receive grants for the study of K-20

12  education system improvement consistent with its

13  responsibilities.

14         (l)  Assist the Florida Board of Education in the

15  conduct of its educational responsibilities in such capacities

16  as the board considers appropriate.

17         Section 5.  Section 229.004, Florida Statutes, is

18  amended to read:

19         229.004  Florida Board of Education.--

20         (1)(a)  In accordance with the implementation process

21  in s. 229.0072 Effective January 7, 2003, the Florida Board of

22  Education is established as a body corporate. The board shall

23  be a part-time citizen board consisting of seven members who

24  are residents of the state appointed by the Governor to

25  staggered 4-year terms, subject to confirmation by the Senate,

26  provided, however, that Senate confirmation is not required

27  for the members of the Florida Board of Education to perform

28  the duties as prescribed in this education governance

29  reorganization implementation act. Members of the board shall

30  serve without compensation, but shall be entitled to

31  reimbursement of travel and per diem expenses in accordance


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  1  with s. 112.061. Members may be reappointed by the Governor

  2  for additional terms not to exceed 8 years of consecutive

  3  service.

  4         (b)  The Governor shall appoint the first chair of the

  5  Florida Board of Education who shall serve for 2 years. After

  6  expiration of the 2-year term and at the first regular meeting

  7  of the board after July 1, the Florida Board of Education

  8  shall select a chair and a vice chair from its appointed

  9  members. The chair shall serve a 2-year term and may be

10  reselected for one additional consecutive term. The Florida

11  Board of Education shall have a chairperson who shall be

12  appointed by the Governor.

13         (2)  The primary duties of the board shall be to

14  establish education goals and objectives consistent with the

15  policies and guiding principles of s. 229.002 and the mission

16  and goals of s. 229.007 and, together with the Commissioner of

17  Education, to oversee the implementation of and enforce

18  compliance with the education policies established by the

19  Legislature. The board, through its secretary, and the

20  commissioner, shall establish, operate, and maintain optimal

21  efficiency of an Office of the Commissioner of Education

22  pursuant to s. 229.0061(2)(c) in accordance with the

23  guidelines of ss. 229.0061 and 229.0073 Board of Education.

24         (3)  In performing its duties, the board, together with

25  the Commissioner of Education, shall:

26         (a)  Ensure accountability and responsiveness to

27  Florida's citizens, including the establishment of a Citizen

28  Information Center that utilizes quick response and

29  customer-friendly methodologies.

30         (b)  Establish and aggressively enforce efficient and

31  effective performance management objectives.


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  1         (c)  Maximize the effectiveness of local, state, and

  2  federal education linkages and funds.

  3         (d)  Issue guidelines for the development of

  4  legislative budget requests for operations and fixed capital

  5  outlay for the coordinated K-20 system.

  6         (e)(d)  Recommend one budget or a coordinated budget

  7  and long-range program plans based on consistent policies for

  8  a seamless kindergarten through graduate school education.

  9         (f)(e)  Adopt cohesive rules, within statutory

10  authority, for education systemwide issues, including rules

11  governing systemwide access to educational opportunities, and

12  ensure that rules adopted for the various education delivery

13  systems are compatible.

14         (g)(f)  Ensure articulation and coordination within and

15  across the entire education delivery system.

16         (h)(g)  Provide ongoing public information regarding

17  performance results for the entire kindergarten through

18  graduate school education system and each of its components.

19         (4)  The board, through its secretary, with the

20  Commissioner of Education, shall be responsible for:

21         (a)  The work of with the Chancellor of Public Schools

22  K-12 Education to establish, and maintain optimal efficiency

23  of, a Division an Office of Public Schools, within the

24  guidelines of ss. 229.0061 and 229.0073, and to achieve the

25  mission and goals of s. 229.007 K-12 Education.

26         (b)  The work of with the Chancellor of Colleges and

27  State Universities to establish, and maintain optimal

28  efficiency of, a Division an Office of Colleges and State

29  Universities, within the guidelines of ss. 229.0061 and

30  229.0073, and to achieve the mission and goals of s. 229.007.

31  


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  1         (c)  The work of with the Chancellor of Community

  2  Colleges and Career Preparation to establish, and maintain

  3  optimal efficiency of, a Division an Office of Community

  4  Colleges, within the guidelines of ss. 229.0061 and 229.0073,

  5  and to achieve the mission and goals of s. 229.007 and Career

  6  Preparation.

  7         (d)  The work of with the Executive Director of

  8  Independent Nonpublic and Nontraditional Education to

  9  establish, and maintain optimal efficiency of, a Division an

10  Office of Independent Nonpublic and Nontraditional Education,

11  within the guidelines of ss. 229.0061 and 229.0073 Services.

12         Section 6.  Section 229.005, Florida Statutes, is

13  amended to read:

14         229.005  Florida education governance officers.--

15         (1)  COMMISSIONER OF EDUCATION.--The Commissioner of

16  Education shall work with the Florida Board of Education and

17  its secretary to oversee the other education governance

18  officers and focus be appointed by the Board of Education from

19  candidates of national caliber and respected and proven

20  organizational leadership with established experience in

21  administering broad-based policy. The commissioner shall be a

22  person who is eminently capable of focusing the entire

23  kindergarten through graduate school education system on

24  accomplishing to accomplish the policies and guiding

25  principles of s. 229.002 and achieving the mission and goals

26  of s. 229.007. The commissioner shall serve as chief executive

27  officer and, in cooperation with the Secretary of the Florida

28  Board of Education, shall have the ability to successfully

29  provide education policy and planning direction, program

30  development, performance management, and funding allocation

31  recommendations across the spectrum of kindergarten through


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  1  graduate school education., and the ability to achieve and

  2  safeguard the will of the people of Florida as expressed in s.

  3  1, Art. IX of the Florida Constitution, that "adequate

  4  provision shall be made by law for a uniform, efficient, safe,

  5  secure, and high quality system of free public schools that

  6  allows students to obtain a high quality education and for the

  7  establishment, maintenance, and operation of institutions of

  8  higher learning and other public education programs that the

  9  needs of the people may require."

10         (2)  CHANCELLOR OF PUBLIC SCHOOLS K-12 EDUCATION.--The

11  Chancellor of Public Schools K-12 Education shall be appointed

12  by the Florida Board of Education Commissioner of Education

13  based on his or her ability to work as a division vice

14  president of the seamless K-20 education system with the

15  Florida Board of Education and the other education governance

16  officers to comply with the policies and guiding principles of

17  s. 229.002, to achieve the mission and goals of s. 229.007, to

18  enhance the quality of public K-12 education in Florida, and

19  to maximize the equity of public K-12 education in Florida by

20  moving the focus to the school site and the individual

21  student., and to achieve and safeguard the will of the people

22  of Florida as expressed in s. 1, Art. IX of the Florida

23  Constitution, that "adequate provision shall be made by law

24  for a uniform, efficient, safe, secure, and high quality

25  system of free public schools that allows students to obtain a

26  high quality education. . . ."

27         (3)  CHANCELLOR OF COLLEGES AND STATE

28  UNIVERSITIES.--The Chancellor of Colleges and State

29  Universities shall be appointed by the Florida Board of

30  Education Commissioner of Education based on his or her

31  ability to work as a division vice president of the seamless


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  1  K-20 education system with the Florida Board of Education and

  2  the other education governance officers to comply with the

  3  policies and guiding principles of s. 229.002, to achieve the

  4  mission and goals of s. 229.007, to enhance the national

  5  reputation and quality of education and educational research

  6  in Florida's colleges and state universities, and to work

  7  directly with each of the college and state university

  8  presidents and boards of trustees in focusing on the education

  9  and educational research needs of the individual college or

10  university and its students.

11         (4)  CHANCELLOR OF COMMUNITY COLLEGES AND CAREER

12  PREPARATION.--The Chancellor of Community Colleges and Career

13  Preparation shall be appointed by the Florida Board of

14  Education Commissioner of Education based on his or her

15  ability to work as a division vice president of the seamless

16  K-20 education system with the Florida Board of Education and

17  the other education governance officers to comply with the

18  policies and guiding principles of s. 229.002, to achieve the

19  mission and goals of s. 229.007, to enhance the quality of

20  education in Florida's community colleges, and to work

21  directly with each of the community college presidents and

22  boards of trustees in focusing on the education needs of the

23  communities and students they serve.

24         (5)  EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF INDEPENDENT NONPUBLIC AND

25  NONTRADITIONAL EDUCATION.--The Executive Director of

26  Independent Nonpublic and Nontraditional Education shall be

27  appointed by the Florida Board of Education Commissioner of

28  Education based on his or her ability to work as a division

29  vice president of the seamless K-20 education system with the

30  Florida Board of Education and the other education governance

31  officers to comply with the policies and guiding principles of


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  1  s. 229.002, to protect the independence, autonomy, and

  2  nongovernmental status of independent education in Florida, to

  3  enhance the quality and expand the offerings and innovations

  4  of independent nonpublic and nontraditional education in

  5  Florida, to establish partnerships with independent nonpublic

  6  education providers at all levels to achieve these goals, and

  7  to work directly with the Board of Trustees of the Florida

  8  Virtual On-Line High School and with Florida's private school

  9  associations, home education associations, independent

10  nonpublic career education institutions, and independent

11  colleges and universities to maximize educational choice and

12  enhance the options, educational alternatives, and

13  student-focused delivery for their students.

14         Section 7.  Subsections (1), (4), (5), (6), and (7) of

15  section 229.006, Florida Statutes, are amended to read:

16         229.006  Education Governance Reorganization Transition

17  Task Force.--

18         (1)  In order to accomplish a smooth transition on

19  January 7, 2003, from the elected State Board of Education to

20  the appointed Florida Board of Education, there shall be

21  established the Education Governance Reorganization Transition

22  Task Force. All members of the task force shall be appointed

23  as soon as feasible but not later than October 1, 2000. The

24  task force shall be comprised of:

25         (a)  Five members appointed by the Governor;

26         (b)  Three members appointed by the President of the

27  Senate; and

28         (c)  Three members appointed by the Speaker of the

29  House of Representatives.

30  

31  


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  1  The transition task force shall be charged with the duty to

  2  identify issues, conduct research, develop the necessary

  3  procedural and substantive framework, and make recommendations

  4  to the Legislature for an orderly 3-year phase-in for a

  5  seamless education continuum and a single or coordinated

  6  kindergarten through graduate school budget in accordance with

  7  the policies and guiding principles of s. 229.002, so that the

  8  Florida Board of Education may immediately begin its work on

  9  January 7, 2003, with maximum effectiveness.

10         (4)  Having completed its recommendations to the

11  Legislature by March 1, 2001, the transition task force shall

12  redirect its focus to provide guidance and monitoring of the

13  implementation process pursuant to s. 229.0072 and to

14  regularly report to the Governor, the Legislature, the

15  Secretary of the Florida Board of Education, and the public on

16  the progress of the reorganization implementation process. If

17  any implementation activity is determined by a majority vote

18  of the task force to be inconsistent with the intent of this

19  act, the chair of the task force shall report such activity

20  directly to the State Board of Education, and the State Board

21  of Education shall act immediately to resolve the dispute.

22  recommend to the Legislature:

23         (a)  How best to achieve education system integration

24  by:

25         1.  Combining appropriate education functions and

26  policies into or under the new Florida Board of Education.

27         2.  Devolving the education delivery services and

28  operational decisions to the appropriate location of delivery

29  to students, specifically the schools, community colleges,

30  colleges, universities, area technical centers, and other

31  


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  1  education institutions or places where the students receive

  2  their education.

  3         3.  Providing for a single or coordinated kindergarten

  4  through graduate school education budget.

  5         (b)  How best to achieve economies in education

  6  services, including recommendations concerning consolidation

  7  of information systems and integrated performance and

  8  financial accounting systems, while maximizing effectiveness

  9  within existing resources and staff.

10         (c)1.  Which, if any, current education staff functions

11  and resources should be eliminated, transferred, or realigned

12  within the proposed new education organizational structure.

13         2.  A recommended salary structure for the Commissioner

14  of Education and for the chancellors.

15         (d)  Whether an Office of Policy Research should be

16  established to explore emerging issues, locate successful and

17  innovative educational programs, and make recommendations to

18  the Governor, the Florida Board of Education, and the

19  Legislature and, if so, its mission, staffing, and location.

20         (e)  The optimal mission of the Florida On-Line High

21  School and a methodology for the operation and funding of the

22  school to achieve that mission.

23         (f)  The optimal location and structure of the Florida

24  Partnership for School Readiness.

25         (5)  By March 1, 2002, the transition task force shall

26  recommend to the Legislature:

27         (a)  Standards, definitions, and guidelines for

28  universities, colleges, community colleges, schools, and other

29  education institutions to ensure the quality of education,

30  systemwide coordination, and efficient progress toward

31  attainment of their appropriate missions.


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  1         (b)  Rules and procedures as necessary to be followed

  2  by university boards of trustees, community college boards of

  3  trustees, and other boards of trustees, as determined

  4  appropriate, for recruitment and selection of presidents,

  5  procedures for annual evaluations of presidents, and

  6  procedures for interaction between presidents, the boards of

  7  trustees, and the new Florida Board of Education.

  8         (c)  A systemwide strategic plan for postsecondary

  9  institutions that considers the role, in their respective

10  communities, of each of the institutions.

11         (d)  Methodologies for degree program approval,

12  establishment of matriculation and tuition fees, and

13  coordination of colleges' and universities' budget requests.

14         (e)  Any additional statutory changes needed during the

15  2002 legislative session to complete the education governance

16  reorganization transition.

17         (6)  By March 1, 2003, the transition task force shall

18  recommend to the Legislature:

19         (a)  Statutory changes necessary to accomplish the

20  policies and guiding principles of s. 229.002, including, but

21  not limited to, statutory changes necessitated by the repeal

22  and review provisions of subsection 3(8) of this act.

23         (b)  Rulemaking authority for the new Florida Board of

24  Education and a plan and timetable for transition or

25  coordination of existing education sector agency rules and

26  rulemaking authority recommendations, if any, for education

27  agencies.

28         (c)  Waiver authority, if any, for the Commissioner of

29  Education or the Florida Board of Education.

30         (5)(7)  By March May 1, 2003, the transition task force

31  shall have completed its duties and shall make its final


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  1  report to the Governor, the Florida Board of Education, the

  2  Commissioner of Education, the President of the Senate, the

  3  Speaker of the House of Representatives, and the minority

  4  leaders of each chamber.  The final report shall include, but

  5  is not limited to:

  6         (a)  A summary of the work and recommendations of the

  7  task force and the status of full implementation of the K-20

  8  education system.

  9         (b)  The status of all pending and completed actions on

10  orders and rules, all enforcement matters, and all

11  delegations, interagency agreements, and contracts with

12  federal, state, regional, and local governments and private

13  entities.

14         (c)  Identification of any remaining or potential

15  duplication in the administration of state education laws and

16  rules, with specific recommendations to eliminate such

17  duplication and promote more efficient administration.

18         Section 8.  Section 229.0061, Florida Statutes, is

19  created to read:

20         229.0061  Florida's K-20 education system; guidelines

21  for implementation; guidelines for structure, functions, and

22  organization.--

23         (1)  GUIDELINES FOR IMPLEMENTATION.--

24         (a)  Florida's seamless K-20 education system shall be

25  a decentralized system in which as many commissions, boards,

26  councils, and other excess layers of bureaucracy as possible

27  are eliminated.

28         (b)  Florida's K-20 education system shall rely on a

29  single entity, the Florida Board of Education, as its single

30  strategic voice. If the board desires assistance on matters of

31  policy research or other issues, the board shall be authorized


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  1  to appoint on an ad hoc basis a committee or committees to

  2  assist it on any and all issues within the K-20 education

  3  system.

  4         (c)  Members of the Florida Board of Education shall

  5  focus on high-level policy decisions.

  6         (d)  It is essential to the success of Florida's

  7  seamless K-20 education system to have a fully operational

  8  systemwide technology plan based on a common set of data

  9  definitions.

10         (2)  GUIDELINES FOR STRUCTURE, FUNCTIONS, AND

11  ORGANIZATION.--

12         (a)  Roles of the Legislature, the Florida Board of

13  Education, the education governance officers, and the

14  institutional boards of trustees and school boards.--The

15  Legislature shall establish education policy, enact education

16  laws, and appropriate and allocate education resources. The

17  Florida Board of Education shall enforce all laws, rules, and

18  guidelines and shall timely provide direction, resources,

19  assistance, intervention when needed, and strong incentives

20  and disincentives to force accountability for results. In

21  terms of major areas of responsibility, the Legislature, the

22  Florida Board of Education, the education governance officers,

23  and the institutional boards of trustees and school boards

24  shall each perform essential constituent roles.

25         (b)  Florida Board of Education.--The Florida Board of

26  Education shall serve as the body corporate for Florida's

27  seamless K-20 education system; implement the coordinated

28  education vision; and, together with the Secretary of the

29  Florida Board of Education, the commissioner, the chancellors,

30  and the executive director, oversee the success of that

31  vision. The Florida Board of Education shall:


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  1         1.  Enforce systemwide education policies and goals.

  2         2.  Recommend annually the coordinated education budget

  3  and authorize the allocation of resources in accordance with

  4  law and rule. Any program recommended by the Florida Board of

  5  Education which requires state funding for more than 1 year

  6  must be presented in a multiyear budget plan.

  7         3.  Adopt long-term and short-term education plans,

  8  including a coordinated 5-year plan for postsecondary

  9  enrollment which the board shall submit annually to the

10  Legislature and shall review periodically for adjustment.

11         4.  Adopt university plans designed to achieve

12  continued student diversity in undergraduate, graduate, and

13  professional programs.

14         5.  Enforce education accountability standards and

15  measures of all components of the K-20 education system.

16         6.  Accurately and continuously assess data and monitor

17  and report performance.

18         7.  Provide high-quality assistance and intervention

19  when and where needed.

20         8.  Provide timely and accurate information on all

21  public and independent education services.

22         9.  Recommend to the Legislature the missions of the

23  public colleges and universities and community colleges.

24         (c)  Commissioner of Education.--The Commissioner of

25  Education shall serve as chief executive officer of the

26  seamless K-20 education system. The commissioner shall propose

27  action on all issues that the Florida Board of Education

28  brings before the State Board of Education and shall be

29  responsible for enforcing compliance with the mission and

30  goals of the seamless K-20 education system by all education

31  delivery sectors. The commissioner's office shall operate all


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  1  statewide functions necessary to support the Florida Board of

  2  Education and the seamless K-20 education system, including

  3  the following areas:

  4         1.  Legal.

  5         2.  Communications, including a Citizen Information

  6  Center that provides quick response and uses customer-friendly

  7  methods.

  8         3.  Strategic planning and budget development.

  9         4.  General administration.

10         5.  Assessment and accountability.

11         6.  Data management, education technology, and an

12  education data warehouse.

13         7.  Access and opportunity.

14         8.  Policy research and development, except the Council

15  for Education Policy Research and Improvement.

16         9.  Florida Board of Education personnel.

17         10.  Workforce and economic development.

18         11.  Educational facilities.

19         12.  Technology and information services.

20         13.  Student financial assistance.

21         14.  Inspector General.

22         (d)  Chancellors and executive director.--The

23  Chancellor of Public Schools, the Chancellor of Community

24  Colleges, the Chancellor of Colleges and Universities, and the

25  Executive Director of Independent Education shall serve the

26  Florida Board of Education, the Secretary of the Florida Board

27  of Education, and the Commissioner of Education in the role of

28  division vice presidents of the K-20 education system and as

29  governance officers and critical members of the state-level

30  education leadership team. They shall each be held responsible

31  for providing leadership, administering programs, resolving


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  1  disputes, providing technical assistance, and timely

  2  recommending action plans to the commissioner for sanctions or

  3  intervention when needed, as well as making recommendations to

  4  the board, the secretary, and the commissioner for strategic

  5  planning and budget development for their respective education

  6  delivery sectors. They shall support the governing policies

  7  and responsibilities of the board, the secretary, and the

  8  commissioner and bear primary responsibility for the

  9  achievement of the mission and goals of the K-20 education

10  system by their education delivery sectors, as applicable to

11  their sectors. They shall reinforce the policies and

12  principles of the seamless K-20 education system in every

13  venue and at every opportunity, and work together to

14  facilitate horizontal communications and interactions between

15  the education delivery sectors. Specifically, as applicable,

16  each education governance officer shall:

17         1.  Serve as the head of the division.

18         2.  Supervise all employees and work of the division.

19         3.  Properly and timely inform education institutions

20  and the public as to legislative action, including funding,

21  grant opportunities, and substantive policy changes affecting

22  the division.

23         4.  Direct the review of expenditures of public funds

24  in accordance with legislative intent.

25         5.  Evaluate the performance of each education

26  institution under the division and report performance results

27  to the public, the Legislature, the Commissioner of Education,

28  the Florida Board of Education, and the institution and its

29  governing board.

30  

31  


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  1         6.  Direct institutional governing boards to take

  2  corrective action to improve unsatisfactory performance

  3  pursuant to law and rules of the Florida Board of Education.

  4         7.  Direct and oversee the development of the

  5  division's accountability system and recommend changes to the

  6  Commissioner of Education and the Florida Board of Education.

  7         8.  Direct the division's activities in order to

  8  coordinate with other divisions to provide a seamless

  9  education system.

10         9.  Direct the provision of state services to

11  institutions under the division.

12         10.  Direct the development of the division's

13  legislative budget request and work cooperatively with the

14  commissioner and other governance officers to develop a

15  coordinated budget request.

16         11.  Serve as the primary point of contact and

17  communication for the division.

18         (e)  Institutional boards of trustees and school

19  boards.--Each institutional board of trustees and school board

20  shall:

21         1.  Provide strategic planning and budget development

22  for their institution or school district.

23         2.  Implement and maintain high-quality education

24  programs within law and rules of the Florida Board of

25  Education.

26         3.  Measure and enforce performance.

27         4.  Provide timely and accurate reporting of

28  information.

29         5.  Provide direct input on education issues to the

30  education governance officers.

31  


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  1         6.  Have broad latitude within law and rules of the

  2  Florida Board of Education in developing local policies and

  3  local programs to meet the needs of their students, their

  4  communities, and area employers.

  5         7.  Hold presidents and appointed superintendents

  6  responsible for institution and school performance.

  7         8.  Be responsible for the fiscal accountability of

  8  their institution or school district.

  9         9.  Be responsible for compliance with all laws, rules

10  of the Florida Board of Education, and performance

11  accountability requirements.

12         (f)  Presidents and superintendents.--Each

13  institutional president and school district superintendent

14  shall:

15         1.  Be responsible for efficient and effective budget

16  and program administration.

17         2.  Provide strong leadership to accomplish their

18  education missions and goals.

19         3.  Closely monitor education performance.

20         4.  Provide timely and accurate financial and

21  performance data.

22         5.  Link instructional staff evaluations to student

23  performance.

24         (g)  Ad hoc advisory committees.--Advisory bodies shall

25  be appointed on an ad hoc basis by the Florida Board of

26  Education to serve the board, commissioner, and chancellors

27  when and as needed by studying and recommending action on

28  major issues that affect the direction and quality of

29  education, providing public forums for debate, and

30  safeguarding a coordinated systemwide approach to education

31  policy decisions.


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  1         Section 9.  Section 229.007, Florida Statutes, is

  2  created to read:

  3         229.007  Florida's K-20 education performance

  4  accountability system; legislative intent; performance-based

  5  funding; mission, goals, and systemwide measures.--

  6         (1)  LEGISLATIVE INTENT.--It is the intent of the

  7  Legislature that:

  8         (a)  The performance accountability system implemented

  9  to assess the effectiveness of Florida's seamless K-20

10  education delivery system provide answers to the following

11  questions in relation to its mission and goals:

12         1.  What is the public getting in return for funds it

13  invests in education?

14         2.  How is Florida's K-20 education system performing

15  in terms of educating its students?

16         3.  How are the major delivery sectors performing to

17  promote student achievement?

18         4.  How are individual schools and postsecondary

19  education institutions performing their responsibility to

20  educate their students as measured by how students are

21  performing and how much they are learning?

22         (b)  The Florida Board of Education recommend to the

23  Legislature systemwide performance standards; the Legislature

24  establish systemwide performance measures and standards; and

25  the systemwide measures and standards provide Floridians with

26  information on what the public is getting in return for the

27  funds it invests in education and how well the K-20 system

28  educates its students.

29         (c)  The Florida Board of Education establish

30  performance measures and set performance standards for

31  individual components of the public education system,


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  1  including individual schools and postsecondary education

  2  institutions, which measures and standards are based primarily

  3  on student achievement.

  4         (2)  PERFORMANCE-BASED FUNDING--The Florida Board of

  5  Education shall work with the chancellors and each delivery

  6  system to develop proposals for performance-based funding,

  7  using performance measures established by the Legislature. The

  8  proposals must provide that at least 10 percent of the state

  9  funds appropriated for the K-20 education system are

10  conditional upon meeting or exceeding established performance

11  standards. The Florida Board of Education must submit the

12  recommendations to the Legislature in the following sequence:

13         (a)  By December 1, 2002, recommendations for state

14  universities, for consideration by the 2003 Legislature and

15  implementation in the 2003-2004 fiscal year.

16         (b)  By December 1, 2003, recommendations for public

17  schools and workforce education, for consideration by the 2004

18  Legislature and implementation in the 2004-2005 fiscal year.

19         (c)  By December 1, 2004, recommendations for community

20  colleges, for consideration by the 2005 Legislature and

21  implementation in the 2005-2006 fiscal year.

22         (d)  By December 1, 2005, recommendations for all other

23  programs that receive state funds within the Department of

24  Education.

25         (3)  MISSION, GOALS, AND SYSTEMWIDE MEASURES.--The

26  mission of Florida's K-20 education system, when it becomes

27  fully operational, shall be to increase the proficiency of all

28  students within one seamless, efficient system, by providing

29  them with the opportunity to expand their knowledge and skills

30  through learning opportunities and research valued by

31  students, parents, and communities, and to maintain an


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  1  accountability system that measures student progress toward

  2  the following goals:

  3         (a)  Highest student achievement, as measured by:

  4  student FCAT performance and annual learning gains; the number

  5  and percentage of schools that improve at least one school

  6  performance grade designation or maintain a school performance

  7  grade designation of "A" pursuant to s. 229.57; graduation or

  8  completion rates at all learning levels; and other measures

  9  identified in law or rule.

10         (b)  Seamless articulation and maximum access, as

11  measured by: the percentage of students who demonstrate

12  readiness for the educational level they are entering, from

13  kindergarten through postsecondary education and into the

14  workforce; the number and percentage of students needing

15  remediation; the percentage of Floridians who complete

16  associate, baccalaureate, professional, and postgraduate

17  degrees; the number and percentage of credits that articulate;

18  the extent to which each set of exit-point requirements

19  matches the next set of entrance-point requirements; and other

20  measures identified in law or rule.

21         (c)  Skilled workforce and economic development, as

22  measured by: the number and percentage of graduates employed

23  in their areas of preparation; the percentage of Floridians

24  with high school diplomas and postsecondary education

25  credentials; the percentage of business and community members

26  who find that Florida's graduates possess the skills they

27  need; and other measures identified in law or rule.

28         (d)  Quality efficient services, as measured by: cost

29  per completer or graduate; average cost per noncompleter at

30  each educational level; cost disparity across institutions

31  offering the same degrees; the percentage of education


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  1  customers at each educational level who are satisfied with the

  2  education provided; and other measures identified in law or

  3  rule.

  4         Section 10.  Section 229.0072, Florida Statutes, is

  5  created to read:

  6         229.0072  Reorganization implementation process.--In

  7  order to best achieve the legislative purpose of the Florida

  8  Education Governance Reorganization Implementation Act:

  9         (1)  The Governor shall appoint the members of the

10  boards of trustees of the state universities in accordance

11  with s. 229.008.

12         (2)  Effective July 1, 2001, the Governor shall appoint

13  a seven-member Florida Board of Education and a Secretary of

14  the Florida Board of Education. The Florida Board of Education

15  shall be housed within, and operate under the direction of,

16  the State Board of Education. The Secretary of the Florida

17  Board of Education shall possess proven organizational

18  leadership and knowledge of broad-based education policy. The

19  secretary shall be confirmed by the Senate during the 2002

20  regular legislative session, but may perform all duties in the

21  interim. The secretary shall serve as secretary to the board

22  and as the board's primary liaison with all entities involved

23  in the reorganization of education. The secretary shall be

24  responsible directly to the Florida Board of Education and

25  shall serve as staff to the board on all action items relating

26  to the reorganization. During the reorganization

27  implementation period, the secretary shall:

28         (a)  Be responsible for proposing actions regarding all

29  education governance reorganization implementation issues.

30  

31  


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  1         (b)  Be responsible for integration of the Department

  2  of Education as it is reorganized into an agency of the

  3  Governor.

  4         (c)  Serve as the head of the Education Reorganization

  5  Workgroup.

  6         (d)  Serve as the head of the K-20 education leadership

  7  team.

  8         (3)  The Florida Board of Education shall establish a

  9  detailed procedure for the implementation of a systemwide K-20

10  technology plan which includes a month-by-month timeline with

11  monthly progress reports to the board.

12         (4)  Subject to review and approval of the State Board

13  of Education, the Florida Board of Education shall:

14         (a)  Adopt rules pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54

15  to implement provisions of law conferring duties upon it. The

16  rules shall be submitted to the State Board of Education. If

17  any rule is not disapproved by the State Board of Education

18  within 45 days after its receipt, the rule shall be filed

19  immediately with the Department of State.

20         (b)  Prepare and submit a coordinated K-20 education

21  budget to the Governor and Legislature that clearly defines

22  the individual needs of the divisions within the Department of

23  Education.

24         (c)  Establish a work plan and timeline for the orderly

25  implementation of the transition, including a fully detailed

26  plan and timeline for the devolution of duties, as

27  appropriate, to the university boards of trustees.

28         (d)  Establish accountability standards for existing

29  legislative performance goals, standards, and measures, and

30  order the development of mechanisms to implement new

31  legislative goals, standards, and measures.


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  1         (e)  Supervise the coordination of institutions and

  2  delivery sectors.

  3         (f)  Establish policies for university and community

  4  college boards of trustees to follow in selecting presidents.

  5         (g)  Approve plans and reports, and take other

  6  necessary actions pertaining to the supervision of education.

  7         (h)  Effectuate the timely implementation of the

  8  seamless K-20 education system.

  9         (i)  Establish advisory boards on an ad hoc basis to

10  provide the support needed to address issues such as public

11  education facilities planning; student issues; instructional

12  issues; distance learning and technology; academic quality,

13  freedom, and responsibility; and research.

14         (j)  Develop and review recommendations on issues of

15  statewide importance, such as technology systems and

16  facilities.

17         (k)  Adopt criteria and implementation plans for future

18  growth issues, such as new colleges and universities and

19  campus mergers; and provide for cooperative agreements between

20  and within public and private education sectors.

21         (l)  Advise the State Board of Education regarding the

22  issuance of bonds.

23         (m)  Develop, and periodically review for adjustment, a

24  coordinated 5-year plan for postsecondary enrollment and

25  annually submit the plan to the Legislature.

26         (n)  Develop and recommend to the Education Governance

27  Reorganization Transition Task Force, the Governor, the

28  Secretary of the Florida Board of Education, the Commissioner

29  of Education, and the Legislature, no later than January 1,

30  2002, for adoption during 2002, a clear, concise new School

31  Code, comprised of the revision of chapters 228-246, to


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  1  accomplish the implementation, administration, and operation

  2  of Florida's seamless K-20 education system in accordance with

  3  the guidelines included in s. 229.0061.

  4         (o)  Serve as the successor for all collective

  5  bargaining agreements currently in effect with the Board of

  6  Regents.

  7         (5)  Effective July 1, 2001, the Commissioner of

  8  Education shall:

  9         (a)  Work with the Florida Board of Education and its

10  secretary to achieve full implementation of the seamless K-20

11  education system.

12         (b)  Commence reorganization of the Department of

13  Education as a state agency of the Governor in accordance with

14  legislative guidelines pursuant to s. 229.0073, the

15  requirements of s. 229.003(5), and requests of the Florida

16  Board of Education as approved by the State Board of

17  Education.

18         (c)  As Secretary of the State Board of Education,

19  assist the Secretary of the Florida Board of Education in

20  determining the agenda for the Florida Board of Education and

21  provide the Florida Board of Education and the State Board of

22  Education the full support of the reorganized Department of

23  Education.

24         Section 11.  Section 229.0073, Florida Statutes, is

25  created to read:

26         229.0073  Reorganization of the Department of

27  Education.--Effective July 1, 2001, notwithstanding the

28  provisions of s. 20.15, the secretary's Education

29  Reorganization Workgroup is established to direct and provide

30  oversight for the reorganization of Florida's K-20 Department

31  of Education. The workgroup shall be comprised of the


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  1  Secretary of the Florida Board of Education, the Commissioner

  2  of Education, the Governor or his designee, the Chancellor of

  3  Colleges and Universities, the Chancellor of Community

  4  Colleges, the Chancellor of Public Schools, and the Executive

  5  Director of Independent Education, who shall consult with the

  6  legislative members of the Education Governance Reorganization

  7  Transition Task Force. The reorganization shall:

  8         (1)  Eliminate duplication across divisions; achieve

  9  greater efficiencies in financial and human resources and

10  education services; and identify functions, resources, and

11  services that should be eliminated, transferred, or realigned.

12         (2)  Include a review and assessment of all bureaus,

13  offices, divisions, and functions of the department

14  reorganized pursuant to this section.

15         (3)  Establish an Office of the Commissioner of

16  Education that includes the general areas of operation that

17  are common to all delivery sectors, such as administration,

18  communication, legal services, financial aid, and government

19  and public relations, in order to increase efficiency, improve

20  service delivery to students, and fully support the

21  operational needs of the Florida Board of Education.

22         (4)  Establish the following divisions within the

23  department:

24         (a)  Division of Public Schools (K-12).--The state's

25  public elementary, middle, junior high, and high schools, as

26  well as combination schools, charter schools, district magnet

27  programs, and area technical centers.

28         (b)  Division of Community Colleges.--The state's 28

29  public community colleges.

30         (c)  Division of Colleges and Universities.--The

31  state's public universities and colleges and the 4-year


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  1  independent colleges and universities whose students are

  2  eligible to receive the William L. Boyd, IV, Florida resident

  3  access grants pursuant to s. 240.605, to enable more effective

  4  articulation between these public and private institutions.

  5  The division chancellor shall administer those provisions of

  6  chapter 246 that apply to the independent colleges and

  7  universities within the division and shall establish a liaison

  8  responsible for partnerships that enhance articulation between

  9  and communication with Florida's 4-year independent colleges

10  and universities.

11         (d)  Division of Independent Education.--The

12  independent education providers within the state, including

13  home education programs that meet the requirements of s.

14  232.0201, private K-12 institutions as described in s.

15  229.808, independent colleges and universities, except those

16  identified under paragraph (c), and private postsecondary

17  career preparation and vocational training institutions.

18         1.  The division shall be under an executive director

19  and shall house a new commission, appointed by the Governor,

20  to oversee licensing of independent postsecondary

21  institutions, consumer protection, and program improvement.

22  The commission shall have the powers and duties of the State

23  Board of Independent Colleges and Universities specified in

24  chapter 246, except the powers and duties relating to those

25  institutions identified under paragraph (c), and of the State

26  Board of Nonpublic Career Education.

27         2.  The division shall serve as the advocate for and

28  liaison to the independent education providers identified in

29  this paragraph.

30         3.  The executive director of the division shall

31  establish a mechanism for regular interaction and input from


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  1  independent education providers in the development of policies

  2  that provide seamless articulation for all students.

  3         4.  The division shall afford students and parents

  4  educational options apart from the public K-20 system.

  5         (5)  Establish the following offices within the Office

  6  of the Commissioner of Education which shall coordinate their

  7  activities with all other divisions and offices:

  8         (a)  Office of Technology and Information Services.--In

  9  conjunction with the Chancellor of Public Schools, the

10  Chancellor of Community Colleges, and the Chancellor of

11  Colleges and Universities, the office shall be responsible for

12  developing a systemwide technology plan, making budget

13  recommendations to the commissioner, providing data collection

14  and management for the system, and coordinating services with

15  other state, local, and private agencies. The office shall

16  develop a method to address the need for a statewide approach

17  to planning and operations of library and information services

18  to achieve a single K-20 education system library information

19  portal and a unified higher education library management

20  system. The Florida Virtual High School shall be

21  administratively housed within the office.

22         (b)  Office of Workforce and Economic Development.--The

23  office shall evaluate the role of each sector of education in

24  Florida's workforce and economic development, assess the

25  specific work skills and variety of careers provided, and

26  report to the Florida Board of Education the effectiveness of

27  each sector.

28         (c)  Office of Educational Facilities and SMART Schools

29  Clearinghouse.--The office shall validate all educational

30  plant surveys and verify Florida Inventory of School Houses

31  (FISH) data.  The office shall provide technical assistance to


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  1  public school districts when requested.  The office, staff,

  2  property, and functions of the SMART Schools Clearinghouse are

  3  transferred by a type two transfer, pursuant to s. 20.06(2),

  4  from the Department of Management Services to the Office of

  5  Educational Facilities and SMART Schools Clearinghouse within

  6  the Office of the Commissioner of Education.

  7         (d)  Office of Student Financial Assistance.--The

  8  office shall provide access to and administer state and

  9  federal grants, scholarships, and loans to those students

10  seeking financial assistance for postsecondary study pursuant

11  to program criteria and eligibility requirements.

12         (6)  Establish a K-20 education leadership team,

13  including, but not limited to, the Secretary of the Florida

14  Board of Education and the education governance officers. The

15  leadership team shall be responsible for systemwide horizontal

16  and vertical communication, and assisting the achievement of

17  the seamless K-20 education system.

18         Section 12.  Section 229.0074, Florida Statutes, is

19  created to read:

20         229.0074  Division of Independent Education.--

21         (1)  The mission of the Division of Independent

22  Education is to enhance the opportunity to raise the

23  educational attainment levels of students pursuing their

24  education in nongovernment settings by representing their

25  interests, and those of the institutions that serve them, in

26  the Department of Education. The Division of Independent

27  Education has no authority over the institutions or students

28  in Florida's independent education sector. The Commission for

29  Independent Education, administratively housed within the

30  division, shall have such authority as specified in chapter

31  246 relating to independent postsecondary education, except


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  1  regarding those institutions described in s. 229.0073(4)(c).

  2  The division shall serve as the advocate for, and liaison to,

  3  independent education providers and institutions, including

  4  home education programs that meet the requirements of s.

  5  232.0201, private K-12 institutions as described in s.

  6  229.808, independent colleges and universities except as

  7  otherwise provided in s. 229.0073(4)(c), and private

  8  postsecondary career preparation/vocational training

  9  institutions.

10         (2)  The executive director of the division shall

11  establish a mechanism for regular interaction and input from

12  independent education providers in the development of policies

13  that provide seamless articulation for all students. The

14  executive director shall:

15         (a)  Learn the interests and concerns of the students

16  and providers of independent education at all levels in order

17  to strongly represent them in the Department of Education.

18         (b)  Articulate the interests and concerns of the

19  students and providers of independent education at all levels

20  in all relevant government settings, accurately reflecting the

21  consensus or differences in opinion among those represented.

22         (c)  Participate with the other division heads in key

23  education decisionmaking processes.

24         (d)  Monitor and participate in rulemaking and other

25  activities relevant to the interests of the independent

26  education sector.

27         (e)  Serve as a key spokesperson for the independent

28  education sector.

29         (f)  Advocate for any necessary educational services

30  and funds for independent education sector families and

31  schools.


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  1         (g)  Establish a clearinghouse of information.

  2         (h)  Foster a collaborative spirit and working

  3  relationship among the institutions of the private and public

  4  sectors.

  5         (i)  Identify and convey the best practices of the

  6  independent education sector for the benefit of the other

  7  education delivery sectors, and vice versa.

  8         (j)  Augment, where appropriate, the efforts of groups

  9  representing the students and providers of independent

10  education to communicate their concerns to government.

11         (k)  Facilitate the administration of education

12  services provided by the Department of Education to the

13  independent education sector, such as those relating to

14  teacher certification and background checks.

15         (l)  Encourage student-centered funding and the

16  expansion of family choice in education.

17         (m)  Develop and propose courses of action to the

18  representatives of the independent education sector.

19         (n)  Communicate relevant decisions to the independent

20  education sector.

21         (o)  Establish and oversee the division staff necessary

22  to carry out the division's functions in the most economical

23  and effective manner.

24         (p)  Evaluate pending policies to ensure they do not

25  place additional regulation or mandates on the independent

26  education community.

27         (3)  The powers and duties of the State Board of

28  Independent Colleges and Universities and the State Board of

29  Nonpublic Career Education, except as relating to any

30  independent nonprofit college or university whose students are

31  eligible to receive the William L. Boyd, IV, Florida resident


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  1  access grants pursuant to s. 240.605, shall be combined and

  2  transferred to a single board named the Commission for

  3  Independent Education, which shall be administratively housed

  4  within the division. This single board shall authorize

  5  granting of certificates, diplomas, and degrees for

  6  independent postsecondary education institutions through

  7  exemption, registration, authorization, and licensing.

  8         (4)  The Commission for Independent Education shall

  9  consist of six citizens who are residents of this state.  The

10  commission shall function in matters relating to independent

11  postsecondary education institutions in consumer protection,

12  program improvement, registration, authorization, licensure,

13  and certificate of exemption from licensure for institutions

14  under its purview, in keeping with the stated goals of the

15  seamless K-20 education system.  The commission shall appoint

16  an executive director to serve as secretary of the commission

17  and shall elect a chair and other officers as needed from

18  among its membership.  Members of the commission shall be

19  appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Senate.  The

20  commission shall be composed of six members, as follows:

21         (a)  One member from an independent college or

22  university that enrolls students who receive state or federal

23  financial aid.

24         (b)  One member from an independent college or

25  university that does not enroll students who receive state or

26  federal financial aid excluding veteran's benefits.

27         (c)  One member from an independent nondegree granting

28  school that enrolls students who receive state or federal

29  financial aid.

30  

31  


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  1         (d)  One member from a public school district or

  2  community college who is an administrator of

  3  vocational-technical education.

  4         (e)  Two lay members who are not affiliated with an

  5  independent postsecondary education institution.

  6         (5)  The establishment of the Division of Independent

  7  Education shall not be construed to advance the extension or

  8  expansion of government regulation of independent or home

  9  education programs and nothing contained in this act shall

10  authorize the state or any school district to further

11  regulate, control, or interfere with the autonomy of

12  independent K-12 schools or home education programs, or their

13  governance, curriculum, accreditation, testing, or other

14  practices.

15         Section 13.  Section 229.008, Florida Statutes, is

16  created to read:

17         229.008  Boards of trustees of the state

18  universities.--

19         (1)(a)  Effective July 1, 2001, and no later than

20  November 1, 2001, the Governor shall appoint a 13-member board

21  of trustees for each university in the State University

22  System, each member to be confirmed by the Senate in the

23  regular legislative session immediately following his or her

24  appointment. In addition, a student body president shall serve

25  as a voting member of his or her university board of trustees.

26  There shall be no state residency requirement for university

27  board members, but the Governor shall consider diversity and

28  regional representation. Members of the boards of trustees

29  shall receive no compensation but may be reimbursed for travel

30  and per diem expenses as provided in s. 112.061.

31  


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  1         (b)  The Governor may remove a trustee upon the

  2  recommendation of the Florida Board of Education, or for

  3  cause.

  4         (2)  Each board of trustees shall be a public body

  5  corporate by the name of "The (name of university) Board of

  6  Trustees," with all the powers of a body corporate, including

  7  a corporate seal, the power to contract and be contracted

  8  with, to sue and be sued, to plead and be impleaded in all

  9  courts of law or equity, and to give and receive donations. In

10  all suits against a board of trustees, service of process

11  shall be made on the chair of the board or, in the absence of

12  the chair, on the corporate secretary or designee.

13         (3)  Boards of trustees' members shall be appointed for

14  staggered 4-year terms, and may be reappointed for additional

15  terms not to exceed 8 years of service.

16         (4)  Each board of trustees shall select its chair and

17  vice chair from the appointed members at its first regular

18  meeting after July 1. The chair shall serve for 2 years and

19  may be reselected for one additional consecutive term. The

20  duties of the chair shall include presiding at all meetings of

21  the board, calling special meetings of the board, attesting to

22  actions of the board, and notifying the Governor in writing

23  whenever a board member fails to attend three consecutive

24  regular board meetings in any fiscal year, which failure may

25  be grounds for removal. The duty of the vice chair is to act

26  as chair during the absence or disability of the chair.

27         (5)  The university president shall serve as executive

28  officer and corporate secretary of the board of trustees and

29  shall be responsible to the board for all operations of the

30  university and for setting the agenda for meetings of the

31  board in consultation with the chair.


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  1         (6)  Upon appointment, each board of trustees shall

  2  commence professional orientation, training, and board

  3  development activities, and shall begin setting direction for

  4  its university in keeping with accountability and performance

  5  expectations of the seamless K-20 education system. Each board

  6  of trustees shall submit to the Florida Board of Education

  7  action plans and timelines for devolution of duties and

  8  responsibilities to the board of trustees.

  9         (7)  The boards of trustees shall be responsible for

10  cost-effective policy decisions appropriate to the

11  university's mission, the implementation and maintenance of

12  high-quality education programs within law and rules of the

13  Florida Board of Education, the measurement of performance,

14  the reporting of information, and the provision of input

15  regarding state policy, budgeting, and education standards.

16         (8)  Whenever any civil action has been brought against

17  any member of a university board of trustees or employee for

18  any act or omission arising out of and in the course of the

19  performance of his or her duties and responsibilities, the

20  university board of trustees may defray all costs of defending

21  such action, including reasonable attorney's fees and expenses

22  together with costs of appeal, and may save harmless and

23  protect such person from any financial loss resulting from the

24  lawful performance of his or her duties and responsibilities.

25  Claims based on such actions or omissions may, in the

26  discretion of the university board of trustees, be settled

27  prior to or after the filing of suit thereon.  The board of

28  trustees may arrange for and pay the premium for appropriate

29  insurance to cover all such losses and expenses.

30         (9)  University boards of trustees shall be

31  "corporations primarily acting as instrumentalities or


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  1  agencies of the state," pursuant to s. 768.28(2), for purposes

  2  of sovereign immunity.

  3         Section 14.  Section 229.0081, Florida Statutes, is

  4  created to read:

  5         229.0081  Powers and duties of university boards of

  6  trustees.--

  7         (1)  Notwithstanding the provisions of chapter 240,

  8  each university board of trustees is vested with the authority

  9  to govern and set policy for its university, as necessary to

10  provide proper governance and improvement of the university in

11  accordance with law and with rules of the Florida Board of

12  Education. Each board of trustees shall perform all duties

13  assigned by law or by rule of the Florida Board of Education

14  or the Commissioner of Education.

15         (2)  Notwithstanding the provisions of chapter 240,

16  each university board of trustees may adopt rules and policies

17  consistent with the university mission, with law, and with

18  rule of the Florida Board of Education, including rules and

19  policies for the following:

20         (a)  Selecting the president to serve at the pleasure

21  of the board and perform such duties as are assigned by the

22  board or otherwise provided by law or by rule.

23         (b)  Fixing the compensation and other conditions of

24  employment of the president.

25         (c)  Conducting periodic evaluations of the president,

26  submitting such evaluations to the Chancellor for review, and

27  suspending or removing the president in accordance with

28  guidelines established by the Chancellor.

29         (d)  Appointing a presidential search committee to make

30  recommendations to the full board of trustees, from which the

31  


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  1  board shall select a candidate for reference to the Chancellor

  2  and ratification by the Florida Board of Education.

  3         (e)  In consultation with the university president,

  4  defining and developing a strategic plan for the university

  5  for recommendation to the Chancellor, the Commissioner of

  6  Education, and the Florida Board of Education, as provided by

  7  law, specifying institutional goals and objectives.

  8         (f)  In consultation with the university president,

  9  providing for academic freedom and academic responsibility at

10  the university.

11         (g)  In consultation with the university president,

12  submitting an institutional budget request, including a

13  request for fixed capital outlay, to the Chancellor in

14  accordance with guidelines established by the Florida Board of

15  Education.

16         (h)  Approving new, and terminating existing,

17  undergraduate and graduate degree programs up to and including

18  the master's degree level, based on criteria established by

19  the Florida Board of Education.

20         (i)  Purchasing, acquiring, receiving, holding, owning,

21  managing, leasing, selling, disposing of, and conveying title

22  to real property, in accordance with rules and guidelines of

23  the Florida Board of Education.

24         (j)  Entering into agreements for and accepting credit

25  card, charge card, and debit card payments as compensation for

26  goods, services, tuition, and fees.

27         (k)  Establishing codes of conduct and appropriate

28  penalties for violations of university rules by students and

29  student organizations, including rules governing student

30  academic honesty.

31  


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  1         (l)  Establishing a committee, at least one-half of the

  2  members of which shall be students appointed by the student

  3  body president, to periodically review and evaluate the

  4  student judicial system.

  5         (m)  Administering the personnel program for all

  6  employees of the university in accordance with law and with

  7  rules and guidelines of the Florida Board of Education,

  8  including: compensation and other conditions of employment,

  9  recruitment and selection, nonreappointment, standards for

10  performance and conduct, evaluation, benefits and hours of

11  work, recognition, inventions and works, travel, learning

12  opportunities, academic freedom and responsibility, promotion,

13  assignment, demotion, transfer, tenure and permanent status,

14  ethical obligations and conflicts of interest, restrictive

15  covenants, disciplinary actions, complaints, appeals and

16  grievance procedures, and separation and termination from

17  employment.

18         (n)  Establishing and maintaining a personnel exchange

19  program.

20         (o)  Governing admission of students subject to the

21  rules of the Florida Board of Education.

22         (p)  Considering the past actions of any person

23  applying for admission, enrollment, or employment, and

24  establishing policies to deny admission, enrollment, or

25  employment to an applicant because of misconduct if determined

26  to be in the best interest of the university.

27         (q)  Ensuring compliance with federal laws,

28  regulations, and requirements.

29         (r)  Using, maintaining, protecting, and controlling

30  university-owned or university-controlled buildings and

31  grounds, property and equipment, name, trademarks and other


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  1  proprietary marks, and the financial and other resources of

  2  the university. Such authority may include placing

  3  restrictions on activities and on access to facilities,

  4  firearms, food, tobacco, alcoholic beverages, distribution of

  5  printed materials, human subjects, animals, and sound.

  6         (s)  Providing and coordinating policies relating to

  7  credit and noncredit educational offerings by the university.

  8         (t)  Administering a procurement program for the

  9  purchase, lease, or acquisition in any manner (including

10  purchase by installment or lease-purchase contract which may

11  provide for the payment of interest on the unpaid portion of

12  the purchase price and for the granting of a security interest

13  in the items purchased) of goods, materials, equipment, and

14  services required by the university.

15         (u)  Supervising faculty practice plans for the

16  academic health science centers.

17         (v)  Prescribing conditions for university health

18  services support organizations to be certified and to use

19  university property and services.

20         (w)  Prescribing conditions, which include audit review

21  and oversight by the board of trustees, for university

22  direct-support organizations to use university property and

23  services.

24         (3)  Each board of trustees shall actively implement a

25  plan, in accordance with guidelines of the Florida Board of

26  Education, for working on a regular basis with the other

27  university boards of trustees, representatives of the

28  community college boards of trustees, and representatives of

29  the district school boards, to achieve the goals of the

30  seamless education system.

31  


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  1         (4)  Notwithstanding the provisions of s. 216.351, a

  2  state university board of trustees may authorize the rent or

  3  lease of parking facilities, provided that such facilities are

  4  funded through parking fees or parking fines imposed by a

  5  university. A board of trustees may authorize a university to

  6  charge fees for parking at such rented or leased parking

  7  facilities.

  8         (5)  Effective July 1, 2002, within proviso in the

  9  General Appropriations Act and law, each board of trustees

10  shall set university tuition and fees. The sum of the activity

11  and service, health, and athletic fees a student is required

12  to pay to register for a course shall not exceed 40 percent of

13  the matriculation fee established in law or in the General

14  Appropriations Act.  No university shall be required to lower

15  any fee in effect on the effective date of this act in order

16  to comply with this subsection.  Within the 40 percent cap,

17  universities may not increase the aggregate sum of activity

18  and service, health, and athletic fees more than 5 percent per

19  year unless specifically authorized in law or in the General

20  Appropriations Act.  This subsection does not prohibit a

21  university from increasing or assessing optional fees related

22  to specific activities that are not required as a part of

23  registration for courses.

24         (6)  Effective July 1, 2002, each board of trustees

25  shall implement the university facilities plan in accordance

26  with law and guidelines of the Commissioner of Education's

27  Office of Educational Facilities and SMART Schools

28  Clearinghouse.

29         (7)  A board of trustees shall perform such other

30  duties as are provided by law or rule of the Florida Board of

31  Education.


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  1         Section 15.  Section 229.0082, Florida Statutes, is

  2  created to read:

  3         229.0082  University presidents; powers and

  4  duties.--The president is the chief executive officer of the

  5  university, shall be corporate secretary of the state

  6  university board of trustees, and is responsible for the

  7  operation and administration of the university. Each

  8  university president shall:

  9         (1)  Recommend the adoption of rules, as appropriate,

10  to the state university board of trustees to implement

11  provisions of law governing the operation and administration

12  of the university, which shall include the specific powers and

13  duties enumerated in this section. Such rules shall be

14  consistent with the mission of the university and the rules

15  and policies of the Florida Board of Education.

16         (2)  Prepare a budget request and an operating budget

17  for approval by the university board of trustees.

18         (3)  Establish and implement policies and procedures to

19  recruit, appoint, transfer, promote, compensate, evaluate,

20  reward, demote, discipline, and remove personnel, within law

21  and rules of the Florida Board of Education and in accordance

22  with rules or policies approved by the university board of

23  trustees.

24         (4)  Govern admissions, subject to law and rules or

25  policies of the university board of trustees and the Florida

26  Board of Education.

27         (5)  Approve, execute, and administer contracts for and

28  on behalf of the university board of trustees for the

29  acquisition of commodities, goods, equipment, services, leases

30  of real and personal property, and planning and construction

31  to be rendered to or by the university, provided such


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  1  contracts are within law and guidelines of the Florida Board

  2  of Education and in conformance with policies of the

  3  university board of trustees, and are for the implementation

  4  of approved programs of the university.

  5         (6)  Act for the university board of trustees as

  6  custodian of all university property. The authority vested in

  7  the university president under this subsection includes the

  8  authority to prioritize the use of university space, property,

  9  equipment, and resources and the authority to impose charges

10  for the use of those items.

11         (7)  Establish the internal academic calendar of the

12  university within general guidelines of the Florida Board of

13  Education.

14         (8)  Administer the university's program of

15  intercollegiate athletics.

16         (9)  Recommend to the board of trustees the

17  establishment and termination of undergraduate and

18  master's-level degree programs within the approved role and

19  scope of the university.

20         (10)  Award degrees.

21         (11)  Recommend to the board of trustees a schedule of

22  tuition and fees to be charged by the university, within law

23  and rules of the Florida Board of Education.

24         (12)  Organize the university to efficiently and

25  effectively achieve the goals of the university.

26         (13)  Review periodically the operations of the

27  university in order to determine how effectively and

28  efficiently the university is being administered and whether

29  it is meeting the goals of its strategic plan adopted by the

30  Florida Board of Education.

31  


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  1         (14)  Enter into agreements for student exchange

  2  programs which involve students at the university and students

  3  in other institutions of higher learning.

  4         (15)  Approve the internal procedures of student

  5  government organizations and provide purchasing, contracting,

  6  and budgetary review processes for these organizations.

  7         (16)  Ensure compliance with federal and state laws,

  8  regulations, and other requirements that are applicable to the

  9  university.

10         (17)  Maintain all data and information pertaining to

11  the operation of the university, and report on the attainment

12  by the university of institutional and statewide performance

13  accountability goals.

14         (18)  Adjust property records and dispose of

15  state-owned tangible personal property in the university's

16  custody in accordance with procedures established by the

17  university board of trustees.  Notwithstanding the provisions

18  of s. 273.055(5), all moneys received from the disposition of

19  state-owned tangible personal property shall be retained by

20  the university and disbursed for the acquisition of tangible

21  personal property and for all necessary operating

22  expenditures.  The university shall maintain records of the

23  accounts into which such moneys are deposited.

24         Section 16.  Effective July 1, 2001, the Florida

25  Partnership for School Readiness is transferred by a type two

26  transfer, pursuant to s. 20.06(2), Florida Statutes, from the

27  Executive Office of the Governor to the Agency for Workforce

28  Innovation.

29         Section 17.  Effective July 1, 2001, the Child Care

30  Executive Partnership Program, child care and early childhood

31  resource and referral, and the subsidized child care program,


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  1  including but not limited to statewide staff as referenced in

  2  the interagency agreement between the Department of Children

  3  and Family Services and the Florida Partnership for School

  4  Readiness signed on March 15, 2001, are transferred by a type

  5  two transfer, pursuant to s. 20.06(2), Florida Statutes, to

  6  the Agency for Workforce Innovation.

  7         Section 18.  Effective July 1, 2001, the

  8  prekindergarten early intervention, migrant prekindergarten,

  9  and Florida First Start programs, including but not limited to

10  statewide staff as referenced in the interagency agreement

11  between the Department of Education and the Florida

12  Partnership for School Readiness, are transferred by a type

13  two transfer, pursuant to s. 20.06(2), Florida Statutes, to

14  the Agency for Workforce Innovation.

15         Section 19.  For purposes of administration of the

16  Early Learning Opportunities Act and the Even Start Family

17  Literacy Programs, pursuant to Pub. L. No. 106-554, the Agency

18  for Workforce Innovation is designated as the lead agency and

19  must comply with lead agency responsibilities pursuant to

20  federal law.

21         Section 20.  Section 411.01, Florida Statutes, is

22  amended to read:

23         411.01  Florida Partnership for School Readiness;

24  school readiness coalitions.--

25         (1)  SHORT TITLE.--This section may be cited as the

26  "School Readiness Act."

27         (2)  LEGISLATIVE INTENT.--

28         (a)  The Legislature recognizes that school readiness

29  programs increase children's chances of achieving future

30  educational success and becoming productive members of

31  society. It is the intent of the Legislature that such


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  1  programs be developmentally appropriate, research-based,

  2  involve parents as their child's first teacher, serve as

  3  preventive measures for children at risk of future school

  4  failure, enhance the educational readiness of eligible

  5  children, and support family education. Each school readiness

  6  program shall provide the elements necessary to prepare

  7  at-risk children for school, including health screening and

  8  referral and an appropriate educational program.

  9         (b)  It is the intent of the Legislature that school

10  readiness programs be operated on a full-day, year-round basis

11  to the maximum extent possible to enable parents to work and

12  become financially self-sufficient.

13         (c)  It is the intent of the Legislature that school

14  readiness programs not exist as isolated programs, but build

15  upon existing services and work in cooperation with other

16  programs for young children, and that school readiness

17  programs be coordinated and funding integrated to achieve full

18  effectiveness.

19         (d)  It is the intent of the Legislature that the

20  administrative staff at the state level for school readiness

21  programs be kept to the minimum necessary to carry out the

22  duties of the Florida Partnership for School Readiness, as the

23  school readiness programs are to be locally designed,

24  operated, and managed, with the Florida Partnership for School

25  Readiness adopting a system for measuring school readiness;

26  developing school readiness program performance standards,

27  outcome measurements, and data design and review; and

28  approving and reviewing local school readiness coalitions and

29  plans.

30         (e)  It is the intent of the Legislature that

31  appropriations for combined school readiness programs shall


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  1  not be less than the programs would receive in any fiscal year

  2  on an uncombined basis.

  3         (f)  It is the intent of the Legislature that the

  4  school readiness program coordinate and operate in conjunction

  5  with the district school systems. However, it is also the

  6  intent of the Legislature that the school readiness program

  7  not be construed as part of the system of free public schools

  8  but rather as a separate program for children under the age of

  9  kindergarten eligibility, funded separately from the system of

10  free public schools, utilizing a mandatory sliding fee scale,

11  and providing an integrated and seamless system of school

12  readiness services for the state's birth-to-kindergarten

13  population.

14         (g)  It is the intent of the Legislature that the

15  federal child care income tax credit be preserved for school

16  readiness programs.

17         (h)  It is the intent of the Legislature that school

18  readiness services shall be an integrated and seamless system

19  of services with a developmentally appropriate education

20  component for the state's eligible birth-to-kindergarten

21  population described in subsection (6) and shall not be

22  construed as part of the seamless K-20 education system except

23  for the administration of the uniform screening system upon

24  entry into kindergarten.

25         (3)  SCHOOL READINESS PROGRAM.--

26         (a)  The school readiness program shall be phased in on

27  a coalition-by-coalition basis. Each coalition's school

28  readiness program shall have available to it funding from all

29  the coalition's early education and child care programs that

30  are funded with state, federal, lottery, or local funds,

31  including but not limited to Florida First Start programs,


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  1  Even-Start literacy programs, prekindergarten early

  2  intervention programs, Head Start programs, programs offered

  3  by public and private providers of child care, migrant

  4  prekindergarten programs, Title I programs, subsidized child

  5  care programs, and teen parent programs, together with any

  6  additional funds appropriated or obtained for purposes of this

  7  section.  These programs and their funding streams shall be

  8  components of the coalition's integrated school readiness

  9  program, with the goal of preparing children for success in

10  school.

11         (b)  Nothing contained in this act is intended to:

12         1.  Relieve parents and guardians of their own

13  obligations to ready their children for school; or

14         2.  Create any obligation to provide publicly funded

15  school readiness programs or services beyond those authorized

16  by the Legislature.

17         (4)  FLORIDA PARTNERSHIP FOR SCHOOL READINESS.--

18         (a)  There is created The Florida Partnership for

19  School Readiness was created to fulfill three major purposes:

20  to administer school readiness program services that help

21  parents prepare eligible children for school; to coordinate

22  the provision of school readiness services on a full-day,

23  full-year, full-choice basis to the extent possible in order

24  to enable parents to work and be financially self-sufficient;

25  and to establish a uniform screening instrument to be

26  implemented by the Department of Education and administered by

27  the school districts upon entry into kindergarten to assess

28  the readiness for school of all children. Readiness for

29  kindergarten is the outcome measure of the success of each

30  school readiness program that receives state or federal funds.

31  with responsibility for adopting and maintaining coordinated


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  1  programmatic, administrative, and fiscal policies and

  2  standards for all school readiness programs, while allowing a

  3  wide range of programmatic flexibility and differentiation.

  4  The partnership is assigned to the Agency for Workforce

  5  Innovation Executive Office of the Governor for administrative

  6  purposes.

  7         (b)  The Florida Partnership for School Readiness

  8  shall:

  9         1.  Coordinate the birth-to-kindergarten services for

10  children who are eligible pursuant to subsection (6) and the

11  programmatic, administrative, and fiscal standards pursuant to

12  this section for all public providers of school readiness

13  programs.

14         2.  Continue to provide unified leadership for school

15  readiness through local school readiness coalitions.

16         3.  Focus on improving the educational quality of all

17  publicly funded school readiness programs.

18         (c)(b)1.  The Florida Partnership for School Readiness

19  shall include the Lieutenant Governor, the Commissioner of

20  Education, the Secretary of Children and Family Services, and

21  the Secretary of Health, or their designees, and the chair of

22  the Child Care Executive Partnership Board, and the

23  chairperson of the Board of Directors of Workforce Florida,

24  Inc. When the Lieutenant Governor or an agency head appoints a

25  designee, the designee must be an individual who attends

26  consistently, and, in the event that the Lieutenant Governor

27  or agency head and his or her designee both attend a meeting,

28  only one of them may vote.

29         2.  The partnership shall also include 14 10 members of

30  the public who shall be business, community, and civic leaders

31  in the state who are not elected to public office. These


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  1  members and their families must not have a direct contract

  2  with any local coalition to provide school readiness services

  3  be providers in the early education and child care industry.

  4  The members must be geographically and demographically

  5  representative of the state. Each member shall be appointed by

  6  the Governor. Eight of the members shall be appointed from a

  7  list of 10 nominees, of which five must be submitted by the

  8  President of the Senate and five must be submitted by the

  9  Speaker of the House of Representatives. By July 1, 2001, four

10  members shall be appointed as follows: two members shall be

11  from the child care industry, one representing the private

12  for-profit sector appointed by the Governor from a list of two

13  nominees submitted by the President of the Senate and one

14  representing faith-based providers appointed by the Governor

15  from a list of two nominees submitted by the Speaker of the

16  House of Representatives; and two members shall be from the

17  business community, one appointed by the Governor from a list

18  of two nominees submitted by the President of the Senate and

19  one appointed by the Governor from a list of two nominees

20  submitted by the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

21  Members shall be appointed to 4-year terms of office. However,

22  of the initial appointees, two shall be appointed to 1-year

23  terms, two shall be appointed to 2-year terms, three shall be

24  appointed to 3-year terms, and three shall be appointed to

25  4-year terms. The members of the partnership shall elect a

26  chairperson annually from the nongovernmental members of the

27  partnership. Any vacancy on the partnership shall be filled in

28  the same manner as the original appointment.

29         (d)(c)  The partnership shall meet at least quarterly

30  but may meet as often as it deems necessary to carry out its

31  duties and responsibilities. Members of the partnership shall


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  1  participate without proxy at the quarterly meetings. The

  2  partnership may take official action by a majority vote of the

  3  members present at any meeting at which a quorum is present.

  4  The partnership shall hold its first meeting by October 1,

  5  1999.

  6         (e)(d)  Members of the partnership are subject to the

  7  ethics provisions in part III of chapter 112, and no member

  8  may derive any financial benefit from the funds administered

  9  by the Florida Partnership for School Readiness.

10         (f)(e)  Members of the partnership shall serve without

11  compensation but are entitled to reimbursement for per diem

12  and travel expenses incurred in the performance of their

13  duties as provided in s. 112.061, and reimbursement for other

14  reasonable, necessary, and actual expenses.

15         (g)(f)  For the purposes of tort liability, the members

16  of the partnership and its employees shall be governed by s.

17  768.28.

18         (h)(g)  The partnership shall appoint an executive

19  director who shall to serve at the its pleasure of the

20  Governor. The executive director who shall perform the duties

21  assigned to him or her by the partnership. The executive

22  director shall be responsible for hiring, subject to the

23  approval of the partnership, all employees and staff members,

24  who shall serve under his or her direction and control.

25         (i)(h)  For purposes of administration of the federal

26  Child Care and Development Fund, 45 C.F.R. parts 98 and 99,

27  the partnership may be designated by the Governor as the lead

28  agency, and if so designated shall comply with the lead agency

29  responsibilities pursuant to federal law.

30  

31  


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  1         (j)(i)  The Florida Partnership for School Readiness is

  2  the principal organization responsible for the enhancement of

  3  school readiness for the state's children, and shall:

  4         1.  Be responsible for the prudent use of all public

  5  and private funds in accordance with all legal and contractual

  6  requirements.

  7         2.  Provide final approval and periodic review of

  8  coalitions and plans.

  9         3.  Provide leadership for enhancement of school

10  readiness in this state by aggressively establishing a unified

11  approach to the state's efforts toward enhancement of school

12  readiness. In support of this effort, the partnership may

13  develop and implement specific strategies that address the

14  state's school readiness programs.

15         4.  Safeguard the effective use of federal, state,

16  local, and private resources to achieve the highest possible

17  level of school readiness for the state's children.

18         5.  Provide technical assistance to coalitions.

19         6.  Assess gaps in service.

20         7.  Provide technical assistance to counties that form

21  a multicounty coalition.

22         8.a.  By July 1, 2000, Adopt a system for measuring

23  school readiness that provides objective data regarding the

24  expectations for school readiness, and establish a method for

25  collecting the data and guidelines for using the data. The

26  measurement, the data collection, and the use of the data must

27  serve the statewide school readiness goal. The criteria for

28  determining which data to collect should be the usefulness of

29  the data to state policymakers and local program

30  administrators in administering programs and allocating state

31  funds, and must include the tracking of school readiness


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  1  system information back to individual school readiness

  2  programs to assist in determining program effectiveness.

  3         b.  By December 31, 2000, the partnership shall also

  4  Adopt a system for evaluating the performance of students

  5  through the third grade to compare the performance of those

  6  who participated in school readiness programs with the

  7  performance of students who did not participate in school

  8  readiness programs in order to identify strategies for

  9  continued successful student performance.

10         9.  By June 1, 2000, Develop and adopt performance

11  standards and outcome measures.

12         10.  In consultation with the Postsecondary Education

13  Planning Commission and the Education Standards Commission,

14  assess the expertise of public and private Florida

15  postsecondary institutions in the areas of infant and toddler

16  developmental research; the related curriculum of training,

17  career, and academic programs; and the status of articulation

18  among those programs. Based on this assessment, the

19  partnership shall provide recommendations to the Governor and

20  the Legislature for postsecondary program improvements to

21  enhance school readiness initiatives.

22         (k)(j)  The partnership may adopt rules necessary to

23  administer the provisions of this section which relate to

24  preparing and implementing the system for school readiness,

25  collecting data, approving local school readiness coalitions

26  and plans, providing a method whereby a coalition can serve

27  two or more counties, awarding incentives to coalitions, and

28  issuing waivers.

29         (l)(k)  The Florida Partnership for School Readiness

30  shall have all powers necessary to carry out the purposes of

31  this section, including, but not limited to, the power to


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  1  receive and accept grants, loans, or advances of funds from

  2  any public or private agency and to receive and accept from

  3  any source contributions of money, property, labor, or any

  4  other thing of value, to be held, used, and applied for the

  5  purposes of this section.

  6         (l)  The Florida Partnership for School Readiness shall

  7  be an independent, nonpartisan body and shall not be

  8  identified or affiliated with any one agency, program, or

  9  group.

10         (m)  The Florida Partnership for School Readiness shall

11  have a budget, shall be financed through an annual

12  appropriation made for this purpose in the General

13  Appropriations Act, and shall be subject to compliance audits

14  and annual financial audits by the Auditor General.

15         (n)  The partnership shall coordinate the efforts

16  toward school readiness in this state and provide independent

17  policy analyses and recommendations to the Governor, the

18  Florida State Board of Education, and the Legislature.

19         (o)  By July 1, 2000, The partnership shall prepare and

20  submit to the Florida State Board of Education a system for

21  measuring school readiness. The system must include a uniform

22  screening, which shall provide objective data regarding the

23  following expectations for school readiness which shall

24  include, at a minimum:

25         1.  The child's immunizations and other health

26  requirements as necessary, including appropriate vision and

27  hearing screening and examinations.

28         2.  The child's physical development.

29         3.  The child's compliance with rules, limitations, and

30  routines.

31         4.  The child's ability to perform tasks.


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  1         5.  The child's interactions with adults.

  2         6.  The child's interactions with peers.

  3         7.  The child's ability to cope with challenges.

  4         8.  The child's self-help skills.

  5         9.  The child's ability to express his or her needs.

  6         10.  The child's verbal communication skills.

  7         11.  The child's problem-solving skills.

  8         12.  The child's following of verbal directions.

  9         13.  The child's demonstration of curiosity,

10  persistence, and exploratory behavior.

11         14.  The child's interest in books and other printed

12  materials.

13         15.  The child's paying attention to stories.

14         16.  The child's participation in art and music

15  activities.

16         17.  The child's ability to identify colors, geometric

17  shapes, letters of the alphabet, numbers, and spatial and

18  temporal relationships.

19         (p)  The partnership shall prepare a plan for

20  implementing the system for measuring school readiness in such

21  a way that all children in this state will undergo the uniform

22  screening established by the partnership when they enter

23  kindergarten. Children who enter public school for the first

24  time in first grade must undergo a uniform screening approved

25  by the partnership for use in first grade. Because children

26  with disabilities may not be able to meet all of the

27  identified expectations for school readiness, the plan for

28  measuring school readiness shall incorporate mechanisms for

29  recognizing the potential variations in expectations for

30  school readiness when serving children with disabilities and

31  


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  1  shall provide for communities to serve children with

  2  disabilities.

  3         (q)  The partnership shall recommend to the Governor,

  4  the Commissioner of Education, and the State Board of

  5  Education rules, and revisions or repeal of rules, which would

  6  increase the effectiveness of programs that prepare children

  7  for school.

  8         (q)(r)  The partnership shall conduct studies and

  9  planning activities related to the overall improvement and

10  effectiveness of school readiness measures.

11         (s)  By February 1, 2000, the partnership shall work

12  with the Office of the Comptroller for electronic funds

13  transfer.

14         (t)  By February 1, 2000, the partnership shall present

15  to the Legislature a plan for combining funding streams for

16  school readiness programs into a School Readiness Trust Fund.

17         (r)(u)  The partnership shall establish procedures for

18  performance-based budgeting in school readiness programs.

19         (s)(v)  The partnership shall submit an annual report

20  of its activities to the Governor, the executive director of

21  the Florida Healthy Kids Corporation, the President of the

22  Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and the

23  minority leaders of both houses of the Legislature. In

24  addition, the partnership's reports and recommendations shall

25  be made available to the Florida State Board of Education,

26  other appropriate state agencies and entities, district school

27  boards, central agencies for child care, and county health

28  departments. The annual report must provide an analysis of

29  school readiness activities across the state, including the

30  number of children who were served in the programs and the

31  number of children who were ready for school.


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  1         (t)(w)  The partnership shall work with school

  2  readiness coalitions to increase parents' training for and

  3  involvement in their children's preschool education and to

  4  provide family literacy activities and programs.

  5  

  6  To ensure that the system for measuring school readiness is

  7  comprehensive and appropriate statewide, as the system is

  8  developed and implemented, the partnership must consult with

  9  representatives of district school systems, providers of

10  public and private child care, health care providers, large

11  and small employers, experts in education for children with

12  disabilities, and experts in child development.

13         (5)  CREATION OF SCHOOL READINESS COALITIONS.--

14         (a)  School readiness coalitions.--

15         1.  If a coalition's plan would serve less than 400

16  birth-to-kindergarten age children, the coalition must either

17  join with another county to form a multicounty coalition,

18  enter an agreement with a fiscal agent to serve more than one

19  coalition, or demonstrate to the partnership its ability to

20  effectively and efficiently implement its plan as a

21  single-county coalition and meet all required performance

22  standards and outcome measures.

23         2.  Each coalition shall have at least 18 but not more

24  than 25 members and such members must include the following:

25         a.  A Department of Children and Family Services

26  district administrator or his or her designee who is

27  authorized to make decisions on behalf of the department.

28         b.  A district superintendent of schools or his or her

29  designee who is authorized to make decisions on behalf of the

30  district.

31  


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  1         c.  A regional workforce development board chair or

  2  director, where applicable.

  3         d.  A county health department director or his or her

  4  designee.

  5         e.  A children's services council or juvenile welfare

  6  board chair or executive director, if applicable.

  7         f.  A child care licensing agency head.

  8         g.  One member appointed by a Department of Children

  9  and Family Services district administrator.

10         h.  One member appointed by a board of county

11  commissioners.

12         i.  One member appointed by a district school board.

13         j.  A central child care agency administrator.

14         k.  A Head Start director.

15         l.  A representative of private child care providers.

16         m.  A representative of faith-based child care

17  providers.

18  

19  More than one-third of the coalition members must be from the

20  private sector, and neither they nor their families may earn

21  an income from the early education and child care industry. To

22  meet this requirement a coalition must appoint additional

23  members from a list of nominees presented to the coalition by

24  a chamber of commerce or economic development council within

25  the geographic area of the coalition.

26         3.  No member of a coalition may appoint a designee to

27  act in his or her place. A member may send a representative to

28  coalition meetings, but that representative will have no

29  voting privileges. When a district superintendent of schools

30  or a district administrator for the Department of Children and

31  Family Services appoints a designee to a school readiness


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  1  coalition, the designee will be the voting member of the

  2  coalition, and any individual attending in his or her place,

  3  including the district administrator or superintendent, will

  4  have no voting privileges.

  5         4.  The school readiness coalition shall replace the

  6  district interagency coordinating council required under s.

  7  230.2305.

  8         4.5.  Members of the coalition are subject to the

  9  ethics provisions in part III of chapter 112.

10         5.6.  For the purposes of tort liability, the members

11  of the school readiness coalition and its employees shall be

12  governed by s. 768.28.

13         6.7.  Multicounty coalitions shall include

14  representation from each county.

15         7.8.  The terms of all appointed members of the

16  coalition must be staggered. Appointed members may serve a

17  maximum of two terms. When a vacancy occurs in an appointed

18  position, the coalition must advertise the vacancy.

19         (b)  Program participation.--The school readiness

20  program shall be established for children from birth to 5

21  years of age or until the child enters kindergarten. The

22  program shall be administered by the school readiness

23  coalition. Within funding limitations, the school readiness

24  coalition, along with all providers, shall make reasonable

25  efforts to accommodate the needs of children for extended-day

26  and extended-year services without compromising the quality of

27  the program.

28         (c)  Program expectations.--

29         1.  The school readiness program must meet the

30  following expectations:

31  


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  1         a.  The program must prepare preschool children to

  2  enter kindergarten ready to learn, as measured by criteria

  3  established by the Florida Partnership for School Readiness.

  4         b.  The program must provide extended-day and

  5  extended-year services to the maximum extent possible to meet

  6  the needs of parents who work.

  7         c.  There must be coordinated staff development and

  8  teaching opportunities.

  9         d.  There must be expanded access to community services

10  and resources for families to help achieve economic

11  self-sufficiency.

12         e.  There must be a single point of entry and unified

13  waiting list.

14         f.  As long as funding or eligible populations do not

15  decrease, the program must serve at least as many children as

16  were served prior to implementation of the program.

17         g.  There must be a community plan to address the needs

18  of all eligible children.

19         h.  The program must meet all state licensing

20  guidelines, where applicable.

21         2.  The school readiness coalition must implement a

22  comprehensive program of readiness services that enhance the

23  cognitive, social, and physical development of children to

24  achieve the performance standards and outcome measures

25  specified by the partnership.  At a minimum, these programs

26  must contain the following elements:

27         a.  Developmentally appropriate curriculum.

28         b.  A character development program to develop basic

29  values.

30         c.  An age-appropriate assessment of each child's

31  development.


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  1         d.  A pretest administered to children when they enter

  2  a program and a posttest administered to children when they

  3  leave the program.

  4         e.  An appropriate staff-to-child ratio.

  5         f.  A healthful and safe environment.

  6         g.  A resource and referral network to assist parents

  7  in making an informed choice.

  8         (d)  Implementation.--

  9         1.  The school readiness program is to be phased in.

10  Until the coalition implements its plan, the county shall

11  continue to receive the services identified in subsection (3)

12  through the various agencies that would be responsible for

13  delivering those services under current law.  Plan

14  implementation is subject to approval of the coalition and the

15  plan by the Florida Partnership for School Readiness.

16         2.  Each school readiness coalition shall develop a

17  plan for implementing the school readiness program to meet the

18  requirements of this section and the performance standards and

19  outcome measures established by the partnership. The plan must

20  include a written description of the role of the program in

21  the coalition's effort to meet the first state education goal,

22  readiness to start school, including a description of the plan

23  to involve the prekindergarten early intervention programs,

24  Head Start Programs, programs offered by public or private

25  providers of child care, preschool programs for children with

26  disabilities, programs for migrant children, Title I programs,

27  subsidized child care programs, and teen parent programs. The

28  plan must also demonstrate how the program will ensure that

29  each 3-year-old and 4-year-old child in a publicly funded

30  school readiness program receives scheduled activities and

31  instruction designed to prepare children to enter kindergarten


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  1  ready to learn. Prior to implementation of the program, the

  2  school readiness coalition must submit the plan to the

  3  partnership for approval. The partnership may approve the

  4  plan, reject the plan, or approve the plan with conditions.

  5  The Florida Partnership for School Readiness shall review

  6  coalition plans at least annually. plan shall be reviewed,

  7  revised, and approved biennially.

  8         3.  The plan for the school readiness program must

  9  include the following minimum standards and provisions:

10         a.  A sliding fee scale establishing a copayment for

11  parents based upon their ability to pay, which is the same for

12  all program providers, to be implemented and reflected in each

13  program's budget.

14         b.  A choice of settings and locations in licensed,

15  registered, religious-exempt, or school-based programs to be

16  provided to parents.

17         c.  Instructional staff who have completed the training

18  course as required in s. 402.305(2)(d)1., as well as staff who

19  have additional training or credentials as required by the

20  partnership respective program provider. The plan must provide

21  a method for assuring the qualifications of all personnel in

22  all program settings.

23         d.  Specific eligibility priorities for children within

24  the coalition's county pursuant to subsection (6).

25         e.  Performance standards and outcome measures

26  established by the partnership or alternatively, standards and

27  outcome measures to be used until such time as the partnership

28  adopts such standards and outcome measures.

29         f.  Reimbursement rates that have been developed by the

30  coalition. Reimbursement rates shall not have the effect of

31  


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  1  limiting parental choice or creating standards or levels of

  2  services that have not been authorized by the Legislature.

  3         g.  Systems support services, including a central

  4  agency, child care resource and referral, eligibility

  5  determinations, training of providers, and parent support and

  6  involvement.

  7         h.  Direct enhancement services to families and

  8  children. System support and direct enhancement services shall

  9  be in addition to payments for the placement of children in

10  school readiness programs.

11         i.  A business plan, which must include the contract

12  with a school readiness agent if the coalition is not a

13  legally established corporate entity. Coalitions may contract

14  with other coalitions to achieve efficiency in multiple-county

15  services, and such contracts may be part of the coalition's

16  business plan.

17         j.  Strategies to meet the needs of unique populations,

18  such as migrant workers.

19  

20  As part of the plan, the coalition may request the Governor to

21  apply for a waiver to allow the coalition to administer the

22  Head Start Program to accomplish the purposes of the school

23  readiness program.  If any school readiness plan can

24  demonstrate that specific statutory goals can be achieved more

25  effectively by using procedures that require modification of

26  existing rules, policies, or procedures, a request for a

27  waiver to the partnership may be made as part of the plan.

28  Upon review, the partnership may grant the proposed

29  modification.

30  

31  


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  1         4.  Persons with an early childhood teaching

  2  certificate may provide support and supervision to other staff

  3  in the school readiness program.

  4         5.  The coalition may not implement its plan until it

  5  submits the plan to and receives approval from the

  6  partnership. Once the plan has been approved, the plan and the

  7  services provided under the plan shall be controlled by the

  8  coalition rather than by the state agencies or departments.

  9  The plan shall be reviewed and revised as necessary, but at

10  least biennially.

11         6.  The following statutes will not apply to local

12  coalitions with approved plans: ss. 125.901(2)(a)3.,

13  228.061(1) and (2), 230.2306, 411.221, 411.222, and 411.232.

14  To facilitate innovative practices and to allow local

15  establishment of school readiness programs, a school readiness

16  coalition may apply to the Governor and Cabinet for a waiver

17  of, and the Governor and Cabinet may waive, any of the

18  provisions of ss. 230.2303, 230.2305, 230.23166, 402.3015,

19  411.223, and 411.232, if the waiver is necessary for

20  implementation of the coalition's school readiness plan.

21         7.  Two or more counties may join for the purpose of

22  planning and implementing a school readiness program.

23         8.  A coalition may, subject to approval of the

24  partnership as part of the coalition's plan, receive

25  subsidized child care funds for all children eligible for any

26  federal subsidized child care program and be the provider of

27  the program services.

28         9.  Coalitions are authorized to enter into multiparty

29  contracts with multicounty service providers in order to meet

30  the needs of unique populations such as migrant workers.

31         (e)  Requests for proposals; payment schedule.--


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  1         1.  At least once every 3 years, beginning July 1,

  2  2001, each coalition must follow the competitive procurement

  3  requirements of s. 287.057 for school readiness programs.

  4         2.  Each coalition shall develop a payment schedule

  5  that encompasses all programs funded by that coalition.  The

  6  payment schedule must take into consideration the relevant

  7  market rate, must include the projected number of children to

  8  be served, and must be submitted to the partnership for

  9  information. Informal child care arrangements shall be

10  reimbursed at not more than 50 percent of the rate developed

11  for family childcare.

12         (f)  Requirements relating to fiscal agents.--If the

13  local coalition is not a legally established corporate entity,

14  the coalition must designate a fiscal agent, which may be a

15  public entity or a private nonprofit organization. The fiscal

16  agent shall be required to provide financial and

17  administrative services pursuant to a contract or agreement

18  with the school readiness coalition. The fiscal agent may not

19  provide direct early education or child care services;

20  however, a fiscal agent may provide such services upon written

21  request of the coalition to the partnership and upon the

22  approval of such request by the partnership. The cost of the

23  financial and administrative services shall be negotiated

24  between the fiscal agent and the school readiness coalition.

25  If the fiscal agent is a provider of early education and care

26  programs, the contract must specify that the fiscal agent will

27  act on policy direction from the coalition and will not

28  receive policy direction from its own corporate board

29  regarding disbursal of coalition funds. The fiscal agent shall

30  disburse funds in accordance with the approved coalition

31  school readiness plan and based on billing and disbursement


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  1  procedures approved by the partnership. The fiscal agent must

  2  conform to all data-reporting requirements established by the

  3  partnership.

  4         (g)  Coalition initiation grants; incentive bonuses.--

  5         1.  School readiness coalitions that are approved by

  6  the Florida Partnership for School Readiness by January 1,

  7  2000, shall be eligible for a $50,000 initiation grant to

  8  support the school readiness coalition in developing its

  9  school readiness plan.

10         2.  School readiness coalitions that are approved by

11  the Florida Partnership for School Readiness by March 1, 2000,

12  shall be eligible for a $25,000 initiation grant to support

13  the school readiness coalition in developing its school

14  readiness plan.

15         3.  School readiness coalitions that have their plans

16  approved by July 1, 2000, shall receive funding from the

17  Florida Partnership for School Readiness in fiscal year

18  2000-2001, and each year thereafter.

19         4.  Upon approval by the Florida Partnership for School

20  Readiness of any coalition's plan that clearly shows

21  enhancement in the quality and standards of the school

22  readiness program without diminishing the number of children

23  served in the program, the partnership shall award the

24  coalition an incentive bonus, subject to appropriation.

25         5.  In fiscal year 2000-2001, and each year thereafter,

26  any increases in funding for school readiness programs shall

27  be administered through school readiness coalitions.

28         6.  In fiscal year 2001-2002, the Florida Partnership

29  for School Readiness shall request proposals from government

30  agencies and nonprofit corporations for the development and

31  


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  1  operation of a school readiness coalition in each county that

  2  does not have an approved coalition by March 1, 2001.

  3         (g)(h)  Evaluation and annual report.--Each school

  4  readiness coalition shall conduct an evaluation of the

  5  effectiveness of the school readiness program, including

  6  performance standards and outcome measures, and shall provide

  7  an annual report and fiscal statement to the Florida

  8  Partnership for School Readiness. This report must conform to

  9  the content and format specifications set by the Florida

10  Partnership for School Readiness. The partnership must include

11  an analysis of the coalition reports in its annual report.

12         (6)  PROGRAM ELIGIBILITY.--The school readiness program

13  shall be established for children under the age of

14  kindergarten eligibility. Priority for participation in the

15  school readiness program shall be given to children who meet

16  one or more of the following criteria:

17         (a)  Children under the age of kindergarten eligibility

18  who are:

19         1.  Children determined to be at risk of abuse,

20  neglect, or exploitation and who are currently clients of the

21  Family Safety Program Office of the Department of Children and

22  Family Services.

23         2.  Children at risk of welfare dependency, including

24  economically disadvantaged children, children of participants

25  in the welfare transition program, children of migrant

26  farmworkers, and children of teen parents.

27         3.  Children of working families whose family income

28  does not exceed 150 percent of the federal poverty level.

29         (b)  Three-year-old children and 4-year-old children

30  who may not be economically disadvantaged but who have

31  disabilities, have been served in a specific part-time or


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  1  combination of part-time exceptional education programs with

  2  required special services, aids, or equipment, and were

  3  previously reported for funding part time with the Florida

  4  Education Finance Program as exceptional students.

  5         (c)  Economically disadvantaged children, children with

  6  disabilities, and children at risk of future school failure,

  7  from birth to 4 years of age, who are served at home through

  8  home visitor programs and intensive parent education programs

  9  such as the Florida First Start Program.

10         (d)  Children who meet federal and state requirements

11  for eligibility for the migrant preschool program but who do

12  not meet the criteria of economically disadvantaged.

13  

14  An "economically disadvantaged" child means a child whose

15  family income is below 150 percent of the federal poverty

16  level. Notwithstanding any change in a family's economic

17  status, but subject to additional family contributions in

18  accordance with the sliding fee scale, a child who meets the

19  eligibility requirements upon initial registration for the

20  program shall be considered eligible until the child reaches

21  kindergarten age.

22         (7)  PARENTAL CHOICE.--

23         (a)  The school readiness program shall provide

24  parental choice pursuant to a purchase service order that

25  ensures, to the maximum extent possible, flexibility in school

26  readiness programs and payment arrangements. According to

27  federal regulations requiring parental choice, a parent may

28  choose an informal child care arrangement. The purchase order

29  must bear the name of the beneficiary and the program provider

30  and, when redeemed, must bear the signature of both the

31  beneficiary and an authorized representative of the provider.


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  1         (b)  If it is determined that a provider has provided

  2  any cash to the beneficiary in return for receiving the

  3  purchase order, the coalition or its fiscal agent shall refer

  4  the matter to the Division of Public Assistance Fraud for

  5  investigation.

  6         (c)  The Office of the Comptroller shall establish an

  7  electronic transfer system for the disbursement of funds in

  8  accordance with this subsection. School readiness coalitions

  9  shall fully implement the electronic funds transfer system

10  within 2 years after plan approval unless a waiver is obtained

11  from the partnership.

12         (8)  STANDARDS; OUTCOME MEASURES.--All publicly funded

13  school readiness programs shall be required to meet the

14  performance standards and outcome measures developed and

15  approved by the partnership. The Office of Program Policy

16  Analysis and Government Accountability shall provide

17  consultation to the partnership in the development of the

18  measures and standards. These performance standards and

19  outcome measures shall be adopted by June 1, 2000, and shall

20  be applicable on a statewide basis.

21         (9)  FUNDING; SCHOOL READINESS PROGRAM.--

22         (a)  It is the intent of this section to establish an

23  integrated and quality seamless service delivery system for

24  all publicly funded early education and child care programs

25  operating in this state.

26         (b)  Notwithstanding s. 20.50:

27         1.  The Agency for Workforce Innovation shall

28  administer school readiness funds, plans, and policies

29  pursuant to contract with the Florida Partnership for School

30  Readiness and shall prepare and submit a unified budget

31  


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  1  request for the school readiness program in accordance with

  2  chapter 216.

  3         2.  All instructions to local school readiness

  4  coalitions shall emanate from the Agency for Workforce

  5  Innovation pursuant to policies of the Legislature, plans of

  6  the Florida Partnership for School Readiness, and the contract

  7  between the Florida Partnership for School Readiness and the

  8  agency.

  9         (c)  The Agency for Workforce Innovation shall prepare

10  a plan that provides for the distribution and expenditure of

11  all state and federal school readiness funds for children

12  participating in public or private school readiness programs

13  based upon an equity and performance funding formula. The plan

14  shall be submitted to the Governor and the Legislative Budget

15  Commission. Upon approval, the Legislative Budget Commission

16  shall authorize the transfer of funds to the Agency for

17  Workforce Innovation for distribution in accordance with the

18  provisions of the formula.

19         (d)(b)  All state funds budgeted for a county for the

20  programs specified in subsection (3), along with the pro rata

21  share of the state administrative costs of those programs in

22  the amount as determined by the partnership, all federal funds

23  and required local matching funds for a county for programs

24  specified in subsection (3), and any additional funds

25  appropriated or obtained for purposes of this section, shall

26  be transferred for the benefit of the coalition for

27  implementation of its plan, including the hiring of staff to

28  effectively operate the coalition's school readiness program.

29  As part of plan approval and periodic plan review, the

30  partnership shall require that administrative costs be kept to

31  the minimum necessary for efficient and effective


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  1  administration of the plan, but total administrative

  2  expenditures shall not exceed 5 percent unless specifically

  3  waived by the partnership.  The partnership shall annually

  4  report to the Legislature any problems relating to

  5  administrative costs.

  6         (c)  By February 15, 2000, the partnership shall

  7  present to the Legislature recommendations for combining

  8  funding streams for school readiness programs into a School

  9  Readiness Trust Fund.  These recommendations must include

10  recommendations for the inclusion or noninclusion of

11  prekindergarten disabilities programs and funding.

12         (e)(d)  The partnership shall annually distribute all

13  eligible funds as block grants to assist coalitions in

14  integrating services and funding to develop a quality service

15  delivery system. Subject to appropriation, the partnership may

16  also provide financial awards to coalitions demonstrating

17  success in merging and integrating funding streams to serve

18  children and school readiness programs.

19         (f)(e)  State funds appropriated for the school

20  readiness program may not be used for the construction of new

21  facilities or the purchase of buses. By February 15, 2000, The

22  partnership shall present to the Legislature recommendations

23  for providing necessary transportation services for school

24  readiness programs.

25         (g)(f)  All cost savings and all revenues received

26  through a mandatory sliding fee scale shall be used to help

27  fund the local school readiness program.

28         (10)  SCHOOL READINESS UNIFORM SCREENING.--The

29  Department of Education shall implement a school readiness

30  uniform screening, including a pilot program during the

31  2001-2002 school year, to validate the system recommended by


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  1  the Florida Partnership for School Readiness as part of a

  2  comprehensive evaluation design. Beginning with the 2002-2003

  3  school year, the department shall require that all school

  4  districts administer the school readiness uniform screening to

  5  each kindergarten student in the district school system upon

  6  the student's entry into kindergarten. Children who enter

  7  public school for the first time in first grade must undergo a

  8  uniform screening adopted for use in first grade. The

  9  department shall incorporate school readiness data into the

10  K-20 data warehouse for longitudinal tracking. Notwithstanding

11  s. 228.093, the department shall provide the partnership and

12  the Agency for Workforce Innovation with complete and full

13  access to kindergarten uniform screening data at the student,

14  school, district, and state levels in a format that will

15  enable the partnership and the agency to prepare reports

16  needed by state policymakers and local school readiness

17  coalitions to access progress toward school readiness goals

18  and provide input for continuous improvement of local school

19  readiness services and programs.

20         (11)(10)  REPORTS.--The Office of Program Policy

21  Analysis and Government Accountability shall assess the

22  implementation, efficiency, and outcomes of the school

23  readiness program and report its findings to the President of

24  the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives by

25  January 1, 2002. Subsequent reviews shall be conducted at the

26  direction of the Joint Legislative Auditing Committee.

27         (12)(11)  CONFLICTING PROVISIONS.--In the event of a

28  conflict between the provisions of this section and federal

29  requirements, the federal requirements shall control.

30         Section 21.  Notwithstanding any other provision of law

31  to the contrary, minimum child care licensing standards shall


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  1  be developed to provide for reasonable, affordable, and safe

  2  before-school and after-school care. Standards, at a minimum,

  3  shall allow for a credentialed director to supervise multiple

  4  before-school and after-school sites.

  5         Section 22.  Effective January 1, 2002, paragraph (a)

  6  of subsection (6) and subsection (10) of section 216.136,

  7  Florida Statutes, are amended to read:

  8         216.136  Consensus estimating conferences; duties and

  9  principals.--

10         (6)  SOCIAL SERVICES ESTIMATING CONFERENCE.--

11         (a)  Duties.--

12         1.  The Social Services Estimating Conference shall

13  develop such official information relating to the social

14  services system of the state, including forecasts of social

15  services caseloads, as the conference determines is needed for

16  the state planning and budgeting system.  Such official

17  information shall include, but not be limited to, subsidized

18  child care caseloads mandated by the Family Support Act of

19  1988.

20         2.  In addition, the Social Services Estimating

21  Conference shall develop estimates and forecasts of the

22  unduplicated count of children eligible for subsidized child

23  care as defined in s. 402.3015(1).  These estimates and

24  forecasts shall not include children enrolled in the

25  prekindergarten early intervention program established in s.

26  230.2305.

27         3.  The Department of Children and Family Services and

28  the Department of Education shall provide information on

29  caseloads and waiting lists for the subsidized child care and

30  prekindergarten early intervention programs requested by the

31  


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  1  Social Services Estimating Conference or individual conference

  2  principals, in a timely manner.

  3         2.4.  The Social Services Estimating Conference shall

  4  develop information relating to the Florida Kidcare program,

  5  including, but not limited to, outreach impacts, enrollment,

  6  caseload, utilization, and expenditure information that the

  7  conference determines is needed to plan for and project future

  8  budgets and the drawdown of federal matching funds. The

  9  agencies required to collect and analyze Florida Kidcare

10  program data under s. 409.8134 shall be participants in the

11  Social Services Estimating Conference for purposes of

12  developing information relating to the Florida Kidcare

13  program.

14         (10)  SCHOOL READINESS PROGRAM ESTIMATING CONFERENCE.--

15         (a)  Duties.--

16         1.  The School Readiness Program Estimating Conference

17  shall develop such estimates and forecasts of the unduplicated

18  count of children number of individuals eligible for school

19  readiness programs in accordance with the standards of

20  eligibility established in s. 411.01(6) by state or federal

21  statute or administrative rule as the conference determines

22  are needed to support the state planning, budgeting, and

23  appropriations processes. 

24         2.  In addition, the School Readiness Program

25  Estimating Conference shall estimate the unduplicated count of

26  children who are eligible for services under the school

27  readiness program.

28         2.3.  The Florida Partnership for School Readiness

29  shall provide information on needs and waiting lists for

30  school readiness program services requested by the School

31  


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  1  Readiness Program Estimating Conference or individual

  2  conference principals in a timely manner.

  3         (b)  Principals.--The Executive Office of the Governor,

  4  the Director of Economic and Demographic Research, and

  5  professional staff who have forecasting expertise from the

  6  Florida Partnership for School Readiness, the Agency for

  7  Workforce Innovation, the Department of Children and Family

  8  Services, the Department of Education, the Senate, and the

  9  House of Representatives, or their designees, are the

10  principals of the School Readiness Program Estimating

11  Conference. The principal representing the Executive Office of

12  the Governor shall preside over sessions of the conference.

13         Section 23.  Effective January 1, 2002, paragraph (a)

14  of subsection (1) of section 232.01, Florida Statutes, is

15  amended to read:

16         232.01  School attendance.--

17         (1)(a)1.  All children who have attained the age of 6

18  years or who will have attained the age of 6 years by February

19  1 of any school year or who are older than 6 years of age but

20  who have not attained the age of 16 years, except as

21  hereinafter provided, are required to attend school regularly

22  during the entire school term.

23         2.  Children who will have attained the age of 5 years

24  on or before September 1 of the school year are eligible for

25  admission to public kindergartens during that school year

26  under rules prescribed by the school board. 

27         3.  Children who will have attained the age of 3 years

28  on or before September 1 of the school year are eligible for

29  admission to prekindergarten early intervention programs

30  during that school year as provided in s. 230.2305 or a

31  preschool program as provided in s. 228.061.


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  1         Section 24.  Effective January 1, 2002, paragraphs (b)

  2  and (c) of subsection (1) and subsection (4) of section

  3  445.023, Florida Statutes, are amended to read:

  4         445.023  Program for dependent care for families with

  5  children with special needs.--

  6         (1)  There is created the program for dependent care

  7  for families with children with special needs.  This program

  8  is intended to provide assistance to families with children

  9  who meet the following requirements:

10         (b)  The child or children are considered to be

11  children with special needs as defined by the subsidized child

12  care program authorized under s. 402.3015.

13         (c)  The family meets the income guidelines established

14  under s. 411.01(6) 402.3015. Financial eligibility for this

15  program shall be based solely on the guidelines used for

16  subsidized child care, notwithstanding any financial

17  eligibility criteria to the contrary in s. 414.075, s.

18  414.085, or s. 414.095.

19         (4)  In addition to school readiness child care

20  services provided under s. 411.01 402.3015, dependent care may

21  be provided for children age 13 years and older who are in

22  need of care due to disability and where such care is needed

23  for the parent to accept or continue employment or otherwise

24  participate in work activities. The amount of subsidy shall be

25  consistent with the rates for special needs child care

26  established by the department. Dependent care needed for

27  employment may be provided as transitional services for up to

28  2 years after eligibility for temporary cash assistance ends.

29         Section 25.  Effective January 1, 2002, subsections (1)

30  and (2) of section 228.061, paragraph (o) of subsection (4) of

31  


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  1  section 230.23, sections 230.2303, 230.2305, and 230.2306,

  2  Florida Statutes, are repealed.

  3         Section 26.  Effective January 1, 2002, section 402.28,

  4  subsection (1) of section 402.281, sections 402.3015,

  5  402.3027, and 402.3028, subsection (18) of section 402.305,

  6  section 402.3052, paragraph (c) of subsection (2) of section

  7  402.3135, and subsections (2) and (6) of section 402.45,

  8  Florida Statutes, are repealed.

  9         Section 27.  Effective January 1, 2002, paragraph (a)

10  of subsection (1) of section 391.304 and section 411.222,

11  Florida Statutes, are repealed.

12         Section 28.  Section 228.082, Florida Statutes, is

13  amended to read:

14         228.082  The Florida Virtual On-Line High School.--

15         (1)(a)  The Florida Virtual On-Line High School is

16  established for the development and delivery of on-line and

17  distance learning education and shall be administratively

18  housed within the Commissioner of Education's Office of

19  Technology and Information Services. The Commissioner of

20  Education shall monitor the school's performance and report

21  its performance to the Florida Board of Education and the

22  Legislature.

23         (b)  The mission of the Florida Virtual High School is

24  to provide students with high-quality technology-based

25  educational opportunities to gain the knowledge and skills

26  necessary to succeed in the 21st century. The school shall

27  serve any student in the state who meets the profile for

28  success in this educational delivery context and shall give

29  priority to:

30         1.  Students who need expanded access to courses in

31  order to meet their educational goals, such as home education


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  1  students and students in inner-city and rural high schools who

  2  do not have access to higher-level courses.

  3         2.  Students seeking accelerated access in order to

  4  obtain a high school diploma at least one semester early.

  5         (c)  To ensure students are informed of the

  6  opportunities offered by the Florida Virtual High School, the

  7  commissioner shall provide the board of trustees access to the

  8  records of public school students in a format prescribed by

  9  the board of trustees.

10  

11  The board of trustees of the Florida Virtual High School shall

12  identify appropriate performance measures and standards based

13  on student achievement that reflect the school's statutory

14  mission and priorities, and shall implement an accountability

15  system for the school that includes assessment of its

16  effectiveness and efficiency in providing quality services

17  that encourage high student achievement, seamless

18  articulation, and maximum access.

19         (2)  The Florida Virtual On-Line High School shall be

20  governed by a board of trustees comprised of seven members

21  appointed by the Governor to 4-year staggered terms, one of

22  whom shall be the current chair of the Florida High School

23  Advisory Board and one of whom shall be a representative of

24  the fiscal agent, and one of whom shall be the Chief

25  Information Officer or his designee from the State Technology

26  Office pursuant to ch. 2000-164, Laws of Florida. The board

27  shall be a public agency entitled to sovereign immunity

28  pursuant to s. 768.28, and board members shall be public

29  officers who shall bear fiduciary responsibility for the

30  Florida Virtual On-Line High School. The board of trustees

31  shall have the following powers and duties:


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  1         (a)1.  The board of trustees shall meet within 30 days

  2  of July 1, 2000, and shall continue to meet at least 4 times

  3  each year, upon the call of the chair, or at the request of a

  4  majority of the membership.

  5         (b)  Until not more than 60 days after the initial

  6  meeting of the board, the current governance structure of the

  7  Florida On-Line High School shall be maintained.

  8         2.(c)  The fiscal year for the Florida Virtual On-Line

  9  High School shall be the state fiscal year as provided in s.

10  216.011(1)(n).

11         (b)  The board of trustees shall be responsible for the

12  Florida Virtual High School's development of a

13  state-of-the-art technology-based education delivery system

14  that is cost-effective, educationally sound, marketable, and

15  capable of sustaining a self-sufficient delivery system

16  through the Florida Education Finance Program, by fiscal year

17  2003-2004. Beginning in fiscal year 2001-2002, the school

18  shall collect and report data for all students served and

19  credit awarded. This data shall be segregated by private,

20  public, and home school students by program. Information shall

21  also be collected which reflects any other school in which a

22  virtual high school student is enrolled.

23         (c)(d)  The board of trustees shall aggressively seek

24  avenues to generate revenue to support its future endeavors,

25  and shall enter into agreements with distance learning

26  providers. The board of trustees and may acquire, enjoy, use,

27  and dispose of patents, copyrights, and trademarks and any

28  licenses and other rights or interests thereunder or therein.

29  Ownership of all such patents, copyrights, trademarks,

30  licenses, and rights or interests thereunder or therein shall

31  vest in the state, with the board having full right of use and


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  1  full right to retain the revenues derived therefrom. Any funds

  2  realized from patents, copyrights, trademarks, or licenses

  3  shall be used to support the school's research and development

  4  activities in order to improve courseware and services to its

  5  students.

  6         (d)(e)  The board of trustees shall annually prepare

  7  and submit to the Florida Board of Education a legislative

  8  budget request, including funding requests for computers for

  9  public school students who do not have access to public school

10  computers, in accordance with chapter 216 and s. 235.41. The

11  legislative budget request of the Florida Virtual On-Line High

12  School shall be prepared using the same format, procedures,

13  and timelines required for the submission of the legislative

14  budget of the Department of Education.

15         (e)(f)  In accordance with law and rules of the Florida

16  Board of Education, the board of trustees shall administer and

17  maintain personnel programs for all employees of the board of

18  trustees and the Florida Virtual On-Line High School. The

19  board of trustees may adopt rules, policies, and procedures

20  related to the appointment, employment, and removal of

21  personnel.

22         1.  The board of trustees shall determine the

23  compensation, including salaries and fringe benefits, and

24  other conditions of employment for such personnel.

25         2.  The board of trustees may establish and maintain a

26  personnel loan or exchange program by which persons employed

27  by the board for the Florida Virtual On-Line High School as

28  academic administrative and instructional staff may be loaned

29  to, or exchanged with persons employed in like capacities by,

30  public agencies either within or without this state, or by

31  private industry. With respect to public agency employees, the


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  1  program authorized by this subparagraph shall be consistent

  2  with the requirements of part II of chapter 112. The salary

  3  and benefits of board personnel participating in the loan or

  4  exchange program shall be continued during the period of time

  5  they participate in a loan or exchange program, and such

  6  personnel shall be deemed to have no break in creditable or

  7  continuous service or employment during such time. The salary

  8  and benefits of persons participating in the personnel loan or

  9  exchange program who are employed by public agencies or

10  private industry shall be paid by the originating employers of

11  those participants, and such personnel shall be deemed to have

12  no break in creditable or continuous service or employment

13  during such time.

14         3.  The employment of all Florida Virtual On-Line High

15  School academic administrative and instructional personnel

16  shall be subject to rejection for cause by the board of

17  trustees, and shall be subject to policies of the board of

18  trustees relative to certification, tenure, leaves of absence,

19  sabbaticals, remuneration, and such other conditions of

20  employment as the board deems necessary and proper, not

21  inconsistent with law.

22         4.  Each person employed by the board of trustees in an

23  academic administrative or instructional capacity with the

24  Florida Virtual On-Line High School shall be entitled to a

25  contract as provided by rules of the board.

26         5.  All employees except temporary, seasonal, and

27  student employees may be state employees for the purpose of

28  being eligible to participate in the Florida Retirement System

29  and receive benefits. The classification and pay plan,

30  including terminal leave and other benefits, and any

31  amendments thereto, shall be subject to review and approval by


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  1  the Department of Management Services and the Executive Office

  2  of the Governor prior to adoption. In the event that the board

  3  of trustees assumes responsibility for governance pursuant to

  4  this section before approval is obtained, employees shall be

  5  compensated pursuant to the system in effect for the employees

  6  of the fiscal agent.

  7         (f)(g)  The board of trustees shall establish

  8  priorities for admission of students in accordance with

  9  paragraph (1)(b).

10         (g)(h)  The board of trustees shall establish and

11  distribute to all school districts and high schools in the

12  state procedures for enrollment of students into courses

13  offered by the Florida Virtual On-Line High School. Such

14  procedures shall be designed to minimize paperwork and fairly

15  resolve the issue of double funding students taking courses

16  online maximize participation by students.

17         (h)(i)  The board of trustees shall annually submit to

18  the Florida Board Department of Education both forecasted and

19  actual enrollments for the Florida Virtual On-Line High

20  School, according to procedures established by the Florida

21  Board Department of Education. At a minimum, such procedures

22  must include the number of public, private, and home school

23  students served by district.

24         (i)(j)  The board of trustees shall provide for the

25  content and custody of student and employee personnel records.

26  Student records shall be subject to the provisions of s.

27  228.093. Employee records shall be subject to the provisions

28  of s. 231.291.

29         (j)(k)  The financial records and accounts of the

30  Florida Virtual On-Line High School shall be maintained under

31  the direction of the board of trustees and under regulations


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  1  prescribed by the Florida State Board of Education for the

  2  uniform system of financial records and accounts for the

  3  schools of the state.

  4  

  5  The Governor shall designate the initial chair of the board of

  6  trustees to serve a term of 4 years. Members of the board of

  7  trustees shall serve without compensation, but may be

  8  reimbursed for per diem and travel expenses pursuant to s.

  9  112.061. The board of trustees shall be a body corporate with

10  all the powers of a body corporate and such authority as is

11  needed for the proper operation and improvement of the Florida

12  Virtual On-Line High School. The board of trustees is

13  specifically authorized to adopt rules, policies, and

14  procedures, consistent with law and rules of the Florida Board

15  of Education related to governance, personnel, budget and

16  finance, administration, programs, curriculum and instruction,

17  travel and purchasing, technology, students, contracts and

18  grants, and property as necessary for optimal, efficient

19  operation of the Florida Virtual On-Line High School. Tangible

20  personal property owned by the board of trustees shall be

21  subject to the provisions of chapter 273.

22         (3)(a)  Until fiscal year 2003-2004, the Commissioner

23  of Education shall include the Florida Virtual On-Line High

24  School as a grant-in-aid appropriation in the department's

25  legislative budget request to the Florida State Board of

26  Education, the Governor, and the Legislature,.

27         (a)  subject to any guidelines imposed in the General

28  Appropriations Act, funds for the operation of the Florida

29  On-Line High School shall be requested and appropriated within

30  the Department of Education as a grant-in-aid category until

31  


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  1  such time as the Legislature authorizes a different funding

  2  mechanism.

  3         (b)  The Orange County District School Board shall be

  4  the temporary fiscal agent of the Florida Virtual On-Line High

  5  School.

  6         (c)  Priorities for the delivery of services by the

  7  Florida On-Line High School shall ensure that priority access

  8  is provided equitably across the state.

  9         (4)  Under no circumstance may the credit of the state

10  be pledged on behalf of the Florida Virtual On-Line High

11  School.

12         (5)  By January 1, 2001, The board of trustees shall

13  annually submit to the Governor, the Legislature, the

14  Commissioner of Education, and the Florida Board of Education

15  Reorganization Transition Commission a complete and detailed

16  report setting forth:

17         (a)  The operations and accomplishments of the Florida

18  Virtual On-Line High School.

19         (b)  The marketing and operational plan for the Florida

20  Virtual On-Line High School, including recommendations

21  regarding methods for improving the delivery of education

22  through the Internet and other distance learning technology.

23         (c)  The assets and liabilities of the Florida Virtual

24  On-Line High School at the end of the fiscal year.

25         (d)  A copy of an annual financial and compliance audit

26  of the accounts and records of the Florida Virtual On-Line

27  High School, conducted by an independent certified public

28  accountant and performed in accordance with rules adopted by

29  the Auditor General.

30         (e)  Recommendations regarding the unit cost of

31  providing services to students. In order to most effectively


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  1  develop public policy regarding any future funding of the

  2  Florida Virtual On-Line High School, it is imperative that the

  3  cost of the program is accurately identified. The identified

  4  cost of the program must be based on reliable data and reflect

  5  the costs associated with maintaining a state-of-the-art

  6  on-line high school, including the costs associated with

  7  maintaining a high-quality research and development effort to

  8  locate and assimilate, or develop, Internet-based courses.

  9         (f)  Recommendations regarding an accountability

10  mechanism to assess the effectiveness of the services provided

11  by the Florida Virtual On-Line High School.

12         (6)  The Auditor General may, pursuant to his or her

13  own authority, or at the direction of the Joint Legislative

14  Auditing Committee, conduct an audit of the Florida Virtual

15  On-Line High School.

16         (7)  The Florida State Board of Education may adopt

17  rules it deems necessary to implement reporting requirements

18  for the Florida Virtual On-Line High School.

19         Section 29.  The Department of Education shall maximize

20  the available federal indirect cost allowed on all federal

21  grants. Beginning with the 2002-2003 fiscal year, none of the

22  funds received from indirect cost allowance shall be expended

23  by the department without specific appropriation by the

24  Legislature. Funds received pursuant to s. 240.241, Florida

25  Statutes, are specifically exempt from this provision.

26         Section 30.  Effective June 30, 2002, section 229.8065,

27  Florida Statutes, is repealed.

28         Section 31.  Effective July 1, 2002, subsection (2) of

29  section 229.085, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:

30         229.085  Custody of educational funds.--

31  


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  1         (2)  There is created in the Department of Education

  2  the Projects, Contracts, and Grants Trust Fund.  If, in

  3  executing the terms of such grants or contracts for specific

  4  projects, the employment of personnel shall be required, such

  5  personnel shall not be subject to the requirements of s.

  6  216.262(1)(a).  The personnel employed to plan and administer

  7  grants or contracts for specific such projects shall be

  8  considered in time-limited employment not to exceed the

  9  duration of the grant or until completion of the project,

10  whichever first occurs.  Such employees shall not acquire

11  retention rights under the Career Service System, the

12  provisions of s. 110.051(1) to the contrary notwithstanding.

13  Any employee holding permanent career service status in a

14  Department of Education position who is appointed to a

15  position under the Projects, Contracts, and Grants Trust Fund

16  shall retain such permanent status in the career service

17  position.

18         Section 32.  Subsection (6) of section 240.205, Florida

19  Statutes, is amended to read:

20         240.205  Board of Regents incorporated.--The Board of

21  Regents is hereby created as a body corporate with all the

22  powers of a body corporate for all the purposes created by, or

23  that may exist under, the provisions of this chapter or laws

24  amendatory hereof and shall:

25         (6)  Acquire real and personal property and contract

26  for the sale and disposal of same and approve and execute

27  contracts for the acquisition of commodities, goods,

28  equipment, contractual services, leases of real and personal

29  property, and construction. The acquisition may include

30  purchase by installment or lease-purchase. Such contracts may

31  provide for payment of interest on the unpaid portion of the


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  1  purchase price.  The board may also acquire the same

  2  commodities, goods, equipment, contractual services, leases,

  3  and construction for use by a university when the contractual

  4  obligation exceeds $1 million.  Title to all real property,

  5  however acquired, shall be vested in the Board of Trustees of

  6  the Internal Improvement Trust Fund and shall be transferred

  7  and conveyed by it. Notwithstanding any other provisions of

  8  this subsection, the Board of Regents shall comply with the

  9  provisions of s. 287.055 for the procurement of professional

10  services as defined therein.

11         Section 33.  Subsections (2), (4), and (5), paragraphs

12  (b), (c), and (d) of subsection (1), and paragraphs (a), (c),

13  (d), and (e) of subsection (3) of section 235.217, Florida

14  Statutes, are repealed.

15         Section 34.  Sections 240.145, 240.147, 240.227,

16  240.307, subsection (2) of section 240.209, and subsection (4)

17  of section 240.311, Florida Statutes, are repealed.

18         Section 35.  Section 240.3836, Florida Statutes, is

19  amended to read:

20         240.3836  Site-determined baccalaureate degree access

21  program; funding.--

22         (1)  The Legislature recognizes that public and private

23  postsecondary education institutions play essential roles in

24  improving the quality of life and economic well-being of the

25  state and its residents. The Legislature also recognizes that

26  economic development needs and the educational needs of

27  place-bound, nontraditional students have increased the demand

28  for local access to baccalaureate degree programs. In some,

29  but not all, geographic regions, baccalaureate degree programs

30  are being delivered successfully at the local community

31  college through agreements between the community college and


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  1  4-year postsecondary institutions within or outside of the

  2  state.  It is therefore the intent of the Legislature to

  3  further expand access to baccalaureate degree programs through

  4  the use of community colleges apply this concept in the

  5  creation and funding of a program that supports local economic

  6  development and responds to public demand for increased access

  7  to baccalaureate degrees in areas of the state that are

  8  underserved by 4-year institutions.

  9         (2)  A community college may be authorized by the

10  Florida Board of Education to offer a limited number of

11  baccalaureate degrees designed to meet local workforce needs

12  through one of the following processes:

13         (a)  A community college may enter into a formal

14  agreement with the state university in its service area for

15  the community college to deliver specified baccalaureate

16  degree programs. The agreement must be submitted to the

17  Florida Board of Education for approval. The community

18  college's proposal must include the following information:

19         1.  Demand for the baccalaureate degree program is

20  identified by the workforce development board, local

21  businesses and industry, local chambers of commerce, and

22  potential students.

23         2.  Unmet need for graduates of the proposed degree

24  program is substantiated.

25         3.  The community college has the facilities and

26  academic resources to deliver the program.

27  

28  The proposal must be submitted to the Council for Education

29  Policy Research and Improvement for review and comment. Upon

30  approval of the Florida Board of Education for the specific

31  degree program or programs, the community college shall pursue


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  1  regional accreditation by the Commission on Colleges of the

  2  Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Any additional

  3  baccalaureate degree programs the community college wishes to

  4  offer must be approved by the Florida Board of Education.

  5         (b)  A community college may develop a proposal to

  6  deliver specified baccalaureate degree programs in its

  7  district. The proposal must be submitted to the Florida Board

  8  of Education for approval. The community college's proposal

  9  must include the following information:

10         1.  Demand for the baccalaureate degree program is

11  identified by the workforce development board, local

12  businesses and industry, local chambers of commerce, and

13  potential students.

14         2.  Unmet need for graduates of the proposed degree

15  program is substantiated.

16         3.  The community college has the facilities and

17  academic resources to deliver the program.

18  

19  The proposal must be submitted to the Council for Education

20  Policy Research and Improvement for review and comment. Upon

21  approval of the Florida Board of Education for the specific

22  degree program or programs, the community college shall pursue

23  regional accreditation by the Commission on Colleges of the

24  Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Any additional

25  baccalaureate degree programs the community college wishes to

26  offer must be approved by the Florida Board of Education.

27         (3)  A community college may not terminate its

28  associate in arts or associate in science degree programs as a

29  result of the authorization provided in subsection (2). The

30  Legislature intends that the primary mission of a community

31  college, including a community college that offers


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  1  baccalaureate degree programs, continues to be the provision

  2  of associate degrees that provide access to a university.

  3         (2)  Categorical funding is authorized for the

  4  site-determined baccalaureate degree access program created by

  5  this section. Funds may not be used to support the

  6  construction, renovation, or remodeling of facilities. This

  7  program is voluntary and does not preclude other mutually

  8  agreed upon arrangements between community colleges and 4-year

  9  institutions for the delivery of baccalaureate degrees on

10  community college sites.

11         (3)  Each community college wishing to participate in

12  the site-determined baccalaureate degree access program must:

13         (a)  Identify baccalaureate degree programs that are

14  not currently offered at the community college but are

15  proposed for delivery at the college to meet the academic and

16  economic development needs of one or more communities within

17  the college's service area. When assessing local needs, the

18  college should seek input from the appropriate chamber of

19  commerce, workforce development council, and other civic and

20  business groups. As used in this section, the term "economic

21  development" means entrepreneurial efforts, the attraction of

22  new business and industry to the area, and the expansion of

23  existing business and industry.

24         (b)  Determine the number of students interested in

25  pursuing each proposed baccalaureate degree program and

26  identify the enrollment patterns, any special characteristics

27  of those students, and any unique combination or modification

28  of course offerings that may be necessary to meet student

29  enrollment needs.

30         (c)  Submit a proposal to the Postsecondary Education

31  Planning Commission requesting validation of the need for the


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  1  proposed baccalaureate degree program and tentative approval

  2  for program funding. The proposal must include:

  3         1.  A description of each proposed baccalaureate degree

  4  program identifying the junior-level and senior-level courses

  5  to be offered and designating whether the program should be

  6  offered for a cohort group or as an ongoing degree program.

  7         2.  Evidence that local occupational forecasts support

  8  the existence of jobs for graduates of the proposed

  9  baccalaureate degree programs.

10         3.  An estimated number of students to be served by

11  each proposed degree program.

12         4.  An assurance that the community college's existing

13  facilities are sufficient to meet the additional demands for

14  classroom and laboratory space for the proposed degree

15  programs.

16         5.  Evidence that the college has requested the

17  participation of no fewer than three regionally accredited

18  4-year postsecondary institutions, including at least one

19  member of the State University System.  Any member of the

20  State University System and any independent, regionally

21  accredited, 4-year institution that is chartered in, and has

22  its primary campus located in, Florida may be a partner in a

23  site-determined baccalaureate degree access program at any

24  community college.

25         6.  A tentative agreement between the community college

26  and the 4-year postsecondary institution selected to offer the

27  upper-level courses leading to the proposed degree or degrees.

28         7.  Any additional provisions that the Postsecondary

29  Education Planning Commission considers pertinent to the

30  proposal.

31  


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  1         (4)  The Postsecondary Education Planning Commission,

  2  after soliciting comments from the Board of Regents and the

  3  State Board of Community Colleges, shall validate the need for

  4  each baccalaureate degree program proposed for delivery

  5  according to this section and shall notify the community

  6  college that its proposal has been approved or rejected.  The

  7  commission shall establish procedures for the timely

  8  submission, review, and approval of the proposals and

  9  agreements required by this section. These procedures must be

10  designed to allow the initiation of approved baccalaureate

11  degree programs at least 3 times each fiscal year.

12         (5)  Once the Postsecondary Education Planning

13  Commission validates the need for the proposed baccalaureate

14  degree program and notifies the community college that its

15  proposal has been approved, the community college shall

16  finalize an agreement with the regionally accredited, public

17  or nonpublic, 4-year postsecondary institution selected to

18  provide the upper-level instructional services in the approved

19  baccalaureate degree program. The commission shall identify

20  the common aspects that each agreement must address,

21  including, but not limited to:

22         (a)  A course delivery pattern based on the student

23  enrollment patterns and characteristics included in the

24  approved proposal.

25         (b)  An articulation provision that guarantees

26  acceptance of students who hold an associate in arts or

27  associate in science degree and satisfy any other

28  prerequisites for admission to the specific baccalaureate

29  degree program.

30         (c)  The provision of library services and student

31  support services.


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  1         (d)  An agreement that the participating 4-year

  2  postsecondary institution will continue offering instructional

  3  services at least until all qualified members of the initial

  4  group of students have had an opportunity to complete the

  5  degree program.

  6         (e)  The specific and measurable performance criteria

  7  that the Postsecondary Education Planning Commission may use

  8  to evaluate the outcomes and outputs of the baccalaureate

  9  degree program within an identified timeframe.

10         (f)  An agreement that in-state student tuition for the

11  degree program will not exceed the matriculation fee for the

12  State University System unless the proposal approved by the

13  Postsecondary Education Planning Commission allows the

14  participating institutions to charge differentiated tuition

15  and fees to encourage student attendance and participation.

16  Out-of-state students shall pay full costs.  Notwithstanding

17  s. 240.605, students participating in a site-determined

18  baccalaureate degree program may not receive a Florida

19  Resident Access Grant.

20         (6)  Each participating community college must submit

21  the agreement required by this section to the Postsecondary

22  Education Planning Commission for review and final approval

23  before initiating an approved site-determined baccalaureate

24  degree access program. Subject to the availability of

25  legislative appropriations specifically provided for this

26  purpose, the Postsecondary Education Planning Commission must

27  recommend to the Commissioner of Education the total funds to

28  be released to each participating community college for the

29  initiation of the approved site-determined baccalaureate

30  degree access program. The community college shall distribute

31  funds to the participating 4-year postsecondary institution at


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  1  the rate specified in the approved agreement. The

  2  Postsecondary Education Planning Commission shall not

  3  recommend the release of funding for any program that is

  4  terminated before or after the evaluation required by this

  5  section.  The total funds to be released for the initiation of

  6  an approved program shall be based on the number of fundable

  7  upper-level student credit hours for each term. Unless

  8  otherwise provided in an appropriations act, the funding per

  9  credit hour shall be an amount equal to the state funds,

10  excluding student fees, appropriated to the State University

11  System for each full-time equivalent student enrolled in

12  upper-level course work. Student credit hours funded under

13  this program may not be duplicated in any other calculation of

14  state funding for the 4-year institution.

15         (7)  The Postsecondary Education Planning Commission

16  may require the participating community colleges and 4-year

17  postsecondary institutions to submit information necessary to

18  monitor the annual performance of the program. Within 90 days

19  after the 2nd and 4th year of the site-determined

20  baccalaureate degree access program, the commission shall

21  submit to the chairs of the education and fiscal committees of

22  the Legislature a progress report, including an evaluation of

23  the funding mechanism created by this section. The commission

24  shall review each site-determined baccalaureate degree access

25  program funded under this section to ascertain whether the

26  performance measures specified in the agreement between the

27  participating community college and the 4-year institution

28  have been met. Each program must be reviewed 4 years after

29  initiation unless a shorter timeframe is specified in the

30  agreement. The performance measures must include the student

31  graduation rate, the employment rate of program graduates both


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  1  within and outside the community college service area, the

  2  continuing need to offer the specific baccalaureate degree

  3  program in the community college service area, and such other

  4  information as the Postsecondary Education Planning Commission

  5  may determine necessary for program and performance

  6  evaluation. Based on its evaluation, the commission shall

  7  either approve continuation of the program, require

  8  modifications prior to program approval, or recommend that the

  9  participating institutions terminate the program after all

10  qualified members of the initial group of students have an

11  opportunity to complete the degree program. The commission

12  must submit to the Commissioner of Education for inclusion in

13  the legislative budget a request for funding for approved

14  site-determined baccalaureate degree access programs.

15         (8)  If no accredited 4-year institution is willing to

16  provide a baccalaureate degree program approved by the

17  Postsecondary Education Planning Commission under this

18  section, the community college board of trustees may ask the

19  commission to evaluate the college's request to offer the

20  degree program. If the commission is satisfied that the

21  community college should offer the degree program, it shall

22  recommend to the Legislature the enactment of statutory

23  authority for the community college to offer that specific

24  baccalaureate degree program.

25         Section 36.  Effective July 1, 2001, subsection (5) of

26  section 240.2011, Florida Statutes, is amended, and subsection

27  (12) is added to said section, to read:

28         240.2011  State University System defined.--The State

29  University System shall consist of the following:

30         (5)  The University of South Florida, with a main

31  campus located in Hillsborough County and two fiscally


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  1  autonomous campuses, one in Pinellas County, named the

  2  University of South Florida St. Petersburg, and the other

  3  named the University of South Florida Sarasota/Manatee.

  4         (12)  New College of Florida, located in Sarasota

  5  County, which is the 4-year residential liberal arts honors

  6  college of the State of Florida.

  7         Section 37.  Section 240.527, Florida Statutes, is

  8  amended to read:

  9         (Substantial rewording of section. See

10         s. 240.527, F.S., for present text.)

11         240.527 The University of South Florida St.

12  Petersburg.--

13         (1)  The St. Petersburg campus of the University of

14  South Florida is established and shall be known as the

15  "University of South Florida St. Petersburg."

16         (a)  The Legislature intends that the University of

17  South Florida St. Petersburg be operated and maintained as a

18  separate organizational and budget entity of the University of

19  South Florida, and that all legislative appropriations for the

20  University of South Florida St. Petersburg be set forth as

21  separate line items in the annual General Appropriations Act.

22         (b)  The University of South Florida St. Petersburg

23  shall have a Campus Board and a Campus Executive Officer.

24         (c)  As soon as possible, but no later than the

25  effective date of this act, the President of the University of

26  South Florida shall begin the process of application to the

27  Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges

28  and Schools for separate accreditation of the University of

29  South Florida St. Petersburg. If the application is not

30  approved or is provisionally approved, the University of South

31  


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  1  Florida shall correct any identified deficiencies and shall

  2  continue to work for accreditation.

  3         (2)  The Board of Trustees of the University of South

  4  Florida shall appoint to the Campus Board, from

  5  recommendations of the President of the University of South

  6  Florida, five residents of Pinellas County. If a resident of

  7  Pinellas County is appointed to the Board of Trustees of the

  8  University of South Florida, the board shall appoint that

  9  member to serve jointly as a member of the Campus Board. If

10  more than one Pinellas County resident is appointed to the

11  Board of Trustees, the board shall select one joint member.

12  The Board of Trustees may reappoint a member to the Campus

13  Board for one additional term. The Campus Board has the powers

14  and duties provided by law, which include the authority to:

15         (a)  Review and approve an annual legislative budget

16  request to be submitted to the Commissioner of Education. The

17  Campus Executive Officer shall prepare the legislative budget

18  request in accordance with guidelines established by the

19  Florida Board of Education. This request must include items

20  for campus operations and fixed capital outlay.

21         (b)  Approve and submit an annual operating plan and

22  budget for review and consultation by the Board of Trustees of

23  the University of South Florida.  The campus operating budget

24  must reflect the actual funding available to that campus from

25  separate line-item appropriations contained in each annual

26  General Appropriations Act, which line-item appropriations

27  must initially reflect the funds reported to the Legislature

28  for the University of South Florida St. Petersburg campus for

29  fiscal year 2000-2001 and any additional funds provided in the

30  fiscal year 2001-2002 legislative appropriation.

31  


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  1         (c)  Enter into central support services contracts with

  2  the Board of Trustees of the University of South Florida for

  3  any services that the St. Petersburg campus cannot provide

  4  more economically, including payroll processing, accounting,

  5  technology, construction administration, and other desired

  6  services. However, all legal services for the campus must be

  7  provided by a central services contract with the university.

  8  The Board of Trustees of the University of South Florida and

  9  the Campus Board shall determine in a letter of agreement any

10  allocation or sharing of student fee revenue between the

11  University of South Florida's main campus and the St.

12  Petersburg campus.

13  

14  The Board of Trustees of the University of South Florida may

15  lawfully delegate other powers and duties to the Campus Board

16  for the efficient operation and improvement of the campus and

17  for the purpose of vesting in the campus the attributes

18  necessary to meet the requirements for separate accreditation

19  by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

20         (3)  The University of South Florida St. Petersburg

21  shall be administered by a Campus Executive Officer who shall

22  be appointed by, report directly to, and serve at the pleasure

23  of the President of the University of South Florida. The

24  President shall consult with the Campus Board before hiring or

25  terminating the Campus Executive Officer. The Campus Executive

26  Officer has authority and responsibility as provided in law,

27  including the authority to:

28         (a)  Administer campus operations within the annual

29  operating budget as approved by the Campus Board.

30  

31  


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  1         (b)  Recommend to the Campus Board an annual

  2  legislative budget request that includes funding for campus

  3  operations and fixed capital outlay.

  4         (c)  Recommend to the Campus Board an annual campus

  5  operating budget.

  6         (d)  Recommend to the Campus Board appropriate services

  7  and terms and conditions to be included in annual central

  8  support services contracts.

  9         (e)  Carry out any additional responsibilities assigned

10  or delegated by the President of the University of South

11  Florida for the efficient operation and improvement of the

12  campus, especially any authority necessary for the purpose of

13  vesting in the campus attributes necessary to meet the

14  requirements for separate accreditation.

15         (4)  Students enrolled at the University of South

16  Florida, including those enrolled at a branch campus, have the

17  same rights and obligations as provided by law, policy, or

18  rule adopted by the University of South Florida, the Florida

19  Department of Education, or other lawful entity. The

20  University of South Florida shall provide a comprehensive and

21  coordinated system of student registration so that a student

22  enrolled at any campus of the University of South Florida has

23  the ability to register for courses at any other campus of the

24  University of South Florida.

25         (5)  The following entities are not affected by this

26  section and remain under the administrative control of the

27  University of South Florida:

28         (a)  The University of South Florida College of Marine

29  Science, which is a component college of the main campus.

30         (b)  The Florida Institute of Oceanography, which is a

31  Type One Institute.


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  1         (c)  The University of South Florida Pediatric Research

  2  Center.

  3         (d)  The University of South Florida/USGS joint

  4  facility.

  5         Section 38.  The University of South Florida

  6  Sarasota/Manatee.--

  7         (1)  The Sarasota/Manatee campus of the University of

  8  South Florida is established and shall be known as the

  9  "University of South Florida Sarasota/Manatee."

10         (a)  The Legislature intends that the University of

11  South Florida Sarasota/Manatee be operated and maintained as a

12  separate organizational and budget entity of the University of

13  South Florida and that all legislative appropriations for the

14  University of South Florida Sarasota/Manatee be set forth as

15  separate line items in the annual General Appropriations Act.

16         (b)  The University of South Florida Sarasota/Manatee

17  shall have a Campus Board and a Campus Executive Officer.

18         (c)  As soon as possible, but no later than July 1,

19  2002, the President of the University of South Florida shall

20  begin the process of application to the Commission on Colleges

21  of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools for

22  separate accreditation of the University of South Florida

23  Sarasota/Manatee. If the application is not approved or is

24  provisionally approved, the University of South Florida shall

25  correct any identified deficiencies and shall continue to work

26  for accreditation.

27         (2)  The Board of Trustees of the University of South

28  Florida shall appoint to the Campus Board, from

29  recommendations of the President of the University of South

30  Florida, three residents of Manatee County and two residents

31  of Sarasota County, to serve 4-year staggered terms. If one or


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  1  more residents of Sarasota County or Manatee County are

  2  appointed to the Board of Trustees of the University of South

  3  Florida, the board shall, at the next vacancy of the Campus

  4  Board, appoint one of those members to serve jointly as a

  5  member of the Campus Board. The Board of Trustees may

  6  reappoint a member to the Campus Board for one additional

  7  term. The Campus Board has the powers and duties provided by

  8  law, which include the authority to:

  9         (a)  Review and approve an annual legislative budget

10  request to be submitted to the Commissioner of Education. The

11  Campus Executive Officer shall prepare the legislative budget

12  request in accordance with guidelines established by the

13  Florida Board of Education. This request must include items

14  for campus operations and fixed capital outlay.

15         (b)  Approve and submit an annual operating plan and

16  budget for review and consultation by the Board of Trustees of

17  the University of South Florida. The campus operating budget

18  must reflect the actual funding available to that campus from

19  separate line-item appropriations contained in each annual

20  General Appropriations Act, which line-item appropriations

21  must initially reflect the funds reported to the Legislature

22  for the University of South Florida Sarasota/Manatee campus

23  for fiscal year 2000-2001 and any additional funds provided in

24  the fiscal year 2001-2002 legislative appropriation.

25         (c)  Enter into central support services contracts with

26  the Board of Trustees of the University of South Florida for

27  any services that the campus at Sarasota/Manatee cannot

28  provide more economically, including payroll processing,

29  accounting, technology, construction administration, and other

30  desired services. However, all legal services for the campus

31  must be provided by a central services contract with the


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  1  university. The Board of Trustees of the University of South

  2  Florida and the Campus Board shall determine in a letter of

  3  agreement any allocation or sharing of student fee revenue

  4  between the University of South Florida's main campus and the

  5  Sarasota/Manatee campus.

  6  

  7  The Board of Trustees of the University of South Florida may

  8  lawfully delegate other powers and duties to the Campus Board

  9  for the efficient operation and improvement of the campus and

10  for the purpose of vesting in the campus the attributes

11  necessary to meet the requirements for separate accreditation

12  by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

13         (3)  The University of South Florida Sarasota/Manatee

14  shall be administered by a Campus Executive Officer who shall

15  be appointed by, report directly to, and serve at the pleasure

16  of the President of the University of South Florida. The

17  President shall consult with the Campus Board before hiring or

18  terminating the Campus Executive Officer. The Campus Executive

19  Officer has authority and responsibility as provided in law,

20  including the authority to:

21         (a)  Administer campus operations within the annual

22  operating budget as approved by the Campus Board.

23         (b)  Recommend to the Campus Board an annual

24  legislative budget request that includes funding for campus

25  operations and fixed capital outlay.

26         (c)  Recommend to the Campus Board an annual campus

27  operating budget.

28         (d)  Recommend to the Campus Board appropriate services

29  and terms and conditions to be included in annual central

30  support services contracts.

31  


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  1         (e)  Carry out any additional responsibilities assigned

  2  or delegated by the President of the University of South

  3  Florida for the efficient operation and improvement of the

  4  campus, especially any authority necessary for the purpose of

  5  vesting in the campus attributes necessary to meet the

  6  requirements for separate accreditation.

  7         (4)  Students enrolled at the University of South

  8  Florida, including those enrolled at a branch campus, have the

  9  same rights and obligations as provided by law, policy, or

10  rule adopted by the University of South Florida, the Florida

11  Department of Education, or other lawful entity. The

12  University of South Florida shall provide a comprehensive and

13  coordinated system of student registration so that a student

14  enrolled at any campus of the University of South Florida has

15  the ability to register for courses at any other campus of the

16  University of South Florida.

17         (5)  Promote technology transfer between the research

18  operations of the University of South Florida and local

19  economic development agencies.

20         Section 39.  New College of Florida.--

21         (1)  MISSION AND GOALS.--As a member of the State

22  University System of Florida, New College of Florida preserves

23  its distinctive mission as a residential liberal arts honors

24  college. To maintain this mission, New College of Florida has

25  the following goals:

26         (a)  To provide a quality education to students of high

27  ability who, because of their ability, deserve a program of

28  study that is both demanding and stimulating.

29         (b)  To engage in undergraduate educational reform by

30  combining educational innovation with educational excellence.

31  


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  1         (c)  To provide programs of study that allow students

  2  to design their educational experience as much as possible in

  3  accordance with their individual interests, values, and

  4  abilities.

  5         (d)  To challenge undergraduates not only to master

  6  existing bodies of knowledge but also to extend the frontiers

  7  of knowledge through original research.

  8         (2)  ACCREDITATION.--As soon as possible, New College

  9  of Florida shall apply to the Commission on Colleges of the

10  Southern Association of Colleges and Schools for separate

11  accreditation.

12         (3)  BOARD OF TRUSTEES.--The Governor shall appoint 12

13  members to the Board of Trustees, to serve 4-year staggered

14  terms, as follows:

15         (a)  Three residents of Sarasota County.

16         (b)  Two residents of Manatee County.

17         (c)  Until the expiration date of the terms of office

18  of the members who are on the board June 30, 2001, seven

19  members selected from the Board of Trustees of the New College

20  Foundation.

21  

22  In addition, a student body president shall shall be a voting

23  member of the board.

24         Section 40.  St. Petersburg College.--

25         (1)  LEGISLATIVE INTENT.--The Legislature intends to

26  create an innovative means to increase access to baccalaureate

27  degree level education in populous counties that are

28  underserved by public baccalaureate degree granting

29  institutions. This education is intended to address the

30  state's workforce needs, especially the need for teachers,

31  


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  1  nurses, and business managers in agencies and firms that

  2  require expertise in technology.

  3         (2)  ST. PETERSBURG COLLEGE; MISSION; POLICIES.--St.

  4  Petersburg Junior College is redesignated as St. Petersburg

  5  College. The college shall immediately seek accreditation from

  6  the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools as a

  7  baccalaureate degree granting college.

  8         (a)  The primary mission of St. Petersburg College is

  9  to provide high-quality undergraduate education at an

10  affordable price for students and the state. The purpose is to

11  promote economic development by preparing people for

12  occupations that require a bachelor's degree and are in demand

13  by existing or emerging public and private employers in this

14  state.

15         (b)  St. Petersburg College shall maintain the mission

16  and policies of a Florida community college, including the

17  open-door admissions policy and the authority to offer all

18  programs consistent with a public community college's

19  authority.

20         (c)  St. Petersburg College shall maintain the

21  distinction between the college and its university center. St.

22  Petersburg College is limited to community college programs

23  and to selected baccalaureate degree level programs that meet

24  community needs and are authorized as provided by this

25  section. The University Center may make available more diverse

26  program offerings, but those programs are offered by a

27  participating college or university and are not to be

28  classified or funded as programs of St. Petersburg College.

29         (d)  The academic policies of the upper-division

30  program at St. Petersburg College must be in accordance with

31  policies of the State University System.


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  1         (e)  Sections 240.293 and 240.2945, Florida Statutes,

  2  apply to St. Petersburg College.

  3         (3)  STUDENTS; FEES.--

  4         (a)  St. Petersburg College shall maintain separate

  5  records for students who are enrolled in courses classified in

  6  the upper division and lower division of a baccalaureate

  7  program, according to the common course numbering and

  8  designation system. A student shall be reported as a community

  9  college student for enrollment in a lower-division course and

10  as a baccalaureate degree program student for enrollment in an

11  upper-division course.

12         (b)  The Board of Trustees of St. Petersburg College

13  shall establish the level of matriculation, tuition, and other

14  authorized student fees.

15         1.  For each credit hour of enrollment in a certificate

16  level course or lower-division level college credit course,

17  matriculation and tuition fees must be within the range

18  authorized in law and rule for a community college student at

19  that level.

20         2.  For each credit hour of enrollment in an

21  upper-division level course, matriculation and tuition fees

22  must be in an amount established by the Board of Trustees of

23  St. Petersburg College. However, fees for upper-division

24  students must reflect the fact that the college does not incur

25  the costs of major research programs. Therefore, the board

26  shall establish fees for upper-division students within a

27  range that is lower than the fees established for students at

28  a public university but higher than the fees for community

29  college students.

30         3.  Other mandatory fees and local fees must be at the

31  same level for all lower-division students. For upper-division


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  1  students, other mandatory fees and local fees must be at a

  2  level less than fees established for University of South

  3  Florida students, regardless of program enrollment or level.

  4  However, students in workforce development education courses

  5  maintain the authorized fee exemptions described in s.

  6  239.117, Florida Statutes, and may be exempt from local fees

  7  imposed by the Board of Trustees, at the board's discretion.

  8         (4)  DEGREES.--

  9         (a)  In addition to the certificates, diplomas, and

10  degrees authorized in s. 240.301, Florida Statutes, St.

11  Petersburg College may offer selected baccalaureate degrees.

12  Initially, the college may offer programs that lead to a

13  baccalaureate degree in the following fields:

14         1.  Bachelor of Science in Nursing. This program must

15  be designed to articulate with the associate in science degree

16  in nursing. St. Petersburg College shall continue to offer the

17  associate in science degree in nursing.

18         2.  Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science in

19  Elementary Education.

20         3.  Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science in Special

21  Education.

22         4.  Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science in

23  Secondary Education.

24         5.  Bachelor of Applied Science in fields selected by

25  the Board of Trustees of St. Petersburg College. The Board of

26  Trustees shall base the selection on an analysis of workforce

27  needs and opportunities in the following counties: Pinellas,

28  Pasco, Hernando, and other counties approved by the Florida

29  Department of Education. For each program selected, St.

30  Petersburg College must offer a related associate in science

31  or associate in applied science degree program, and the


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  1  baccalaureate degree level program must be designed to

  2  articulate fully with at least one associate in science degree

  3  program. The college is encouraged to develop articulation

  4  agreements for enrollment of graduates of related associate in

  5  applied science degree programs.

  6         (b)  St. Petersburg College may offer courses that

  7  enable teachers to qualify for certification and

  8  recertification as required by law or rule.

  9         (c)  St. Petersburg College may offer programs to

10  provide opportunities for a person who holds a baccalaureate

11  degree, but is not certified to teach, to obtain any

12  additional courses required for teacher certification.

13         (d)  Master's degree level programs and doctoral

14  programs may be provided by agreement with a college or

15  university participating in the University Center of St.

16  Petersburg College.

17         (e)  For those students living outside Pinellas County,

18  St. Petersburg College shall recruit for the upper-division

19  only those students who have earned an associate degree. In

20  recruiting upper-division students in Pasco and Hernando

21  Counties, St. Petersburg College shall work cooperatively with

22  Pasco-Hernando Community College and shall seek to offer

23  courses and programs at Pasco-Hernando Community College when

24  feasible. The nursing programs, in particular, must be

25  conducted cooperatively, and programs at St. Petersburg

26  College shall not conflict with Pasco-Hernando Community

27  College's and the University of South Florida's cooperative

28  nursing program.

29         (5)  BOARDS.--

30         (a)  The Board of Trustees of St. Petersburg Junior

31  College is renamed the Board of Trustees of St. Petersburg


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  1  College and serves as its governing board. The Governor shall

  2  appoint members as provided in s. 240.313, Florida Statutes,

  3  and the board has the duties and authorities granted in ss.

  4  240.315 and 240.319, Florida Statutes, and by rules of the

  5  Florida Board of Education.

  6         (b)  The Board of Trustees of St. Petersburg College

  7  may authorize direct-support organizations as authorized in

  8  ss. 240.299 and 240.331, Florida Statutes.

  9         (c)  The Board of Trustees of St. Petersburg College

10  may continue to award degrees, diplomas, and certificates as

11  authorized for St. Petersburg Junior College, and in the name

12  of St. Petersburg Junior College, until St. Petersburg College

13  receives its accreditation.

14         (d)  A coordinating board shall assist the Board of

15  Trustees in its deliberations concerning issues that affect

16  the upper-division of St. Petersburg College. The coordinating

17  board consists of the President of the University of South

18  Florida, the President of St. Petersburg College, the

19  President of Pasco-Hernando Community College, and the chairs

20  of the boards of trustees of those institutions.

21         (e)  Beginning 4 years after the college receives

22  accreditation to offer baccalaureate degrees, the Board of

23  Trustees of St. Petersburg College may determine additional

24  programs to be offered, with the approval of the coordinating

25  board. The determination must consider community needs and

26  economic opportunities.

27         (f)  The coordinating board shall meet at the request

28  of the President of the University of South Florida or the

29  President of St. Petersburg College.

30         (g)  If the coordinating board cannot decide an issue

31  of importance to the programs designed for upper-division


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  1  students, the chief educational officer of this state shall

  2  resolve the issue.

  3         (6)  EMPLOYEES.--

  4         (a)  Employment at St. Petersburg College is governed

  5  by the same laws that govern community colleges, except that

  6  upper-division faculty are eligible for continuing contracts

  7  upon the completion of the fifth year of teaching.

  8         (b)  Employee records for all personnel shall be

  9  maintained as required by s. 240.337, Florida Statutes.

10         (7)  FACILITIES.--St. Petersburg College may request

11  funding from the Public Education Capital Outlay and Debt

12  Service Trust Fund as a community college and as a university.

13  The municipalities in Pinellas County, the Board of County

14  Commissioners of Pinellas County, and all other governmental

15  entities are authorized to cooperate with the Board of

16  Trustees of St. Petersburg College in establishing this

17  institution. The acquisition and donation of lands, buildings,

18  and equipment for the use of St. Petersburg College are

19  authorized as a public purpose. The Board of County

20  Commissioners of Pinellas County and all municipalities in

21  Pinellas County may exercise the power of eminent domain to

22  acquire lands, buildings, and equipment for the use of St.

23  Petersburg College, regardless of whether such lands,

24  buildings, and equipment are located in a community

25  redevelopment area.

26         (8)  STATE FUNDING.--

27         (a)  The Legislature intends to fund St. Petersburg

28  College as a community college for its workforce development

29  education programs and for its lower-division level college

30  credit courses and programs.

31  


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  1         (b)  The Legislature intends to fund St. Petersburg

  2  College as a baccalaureate degree level institution for its

  3  upper-division level courses and programs.

  4         (c)  During the 2001-2002 fiscal year, St. Petersburg

  5  College shall estimate the appropriate level of funding for

  6  these programs. By March 1, 2002, the college shall complete a

  7  cost study and shall submit to the Legislature a proposal for

  8  cost accounting and legislative budget requests designed to

  9  acknowledge its unique classification. The cost study must

10  indicate actual costs projected for the first 4 years of

11  operation as a baccalaureate degree level institution, with

12  the first students expected to enroll in the upper division in

13  the fall semester of 2002.

14         Section 41.  Nothing contained within this act shall be

15  construed to adversely impact the accreditation of the

16  University of South Florida.

17         Section 42.  Florida Bright Futures Scholarship Testing

18  Program.--

19         (1)  By January 1, 2002, the Articulation Coordinating

20  Committee shall identify the minimum scores, maximum credit,

21  and course or courses for which credit is to be awarded for

22  each College Level Examination Program (CLEP) general

23  examination, CLEP subject examination, College Board Advanced

24  Placement Program examination, and International Baccalaureate

25  examination. In addition, the Articulation Coordinating

26  Committee shall identify such courses in the general education

27  core curriculum of each state university and community

28  college.

29         (2)  Each community college and state university must

30  award credit for specific courses for which competency has

31  been demonstrated by successful passage of one of these


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  1  examinations unless the award of credit duplicates credit

  2  already awarded. Community colleges and universities may not

  3  exempt students from courses without the award of credit if

  4  competencies have been so demonstrated.

  5         (3)  Beginning with initial award recipients for the

  6  2002-2003 academic year and continuing thereafter, students

  7  eligible for a Florida Academic Scholars award or a Florida

  8  Medallion Scholars award who are admitted to and enroll in a

  9  community college or state university shall, prior to

10  registering for courses that may be earned through a CLEP

11  examination and no later than registration for their second

12  term, complete at least five examinations from those specified

13  in subsection (1) in the following areas: English; humanities;

14  mathematics; natural sciences; and social sciences. Successful

15  completion of dual enrollment courses, Advanced Placement

16  examinations, and International Baccalaureate examinations

17  taken prior to high school graduation satisfy this

18  requirement. The Articulation Coordinating Committee shall

19  identify the examinations that satisfy each component of this

20  requirement.

21         (4)  Initial award recipients for the 2001-2002

22  academic year who are eligible for a Florida Academic Scholars

23  award or a Florida Medallion Scholars award and who are

24  admitted to and enroll in a community college or state

25  university may choose, prior to registering for courses that

26  may be earned through CLEP examination, to complete up to five

27  CLEP examinations, one in each of the following areas:

28  English; humanities; mathematics; natural sciences; and social

29  sciences.

30         (5)  Each community college and state university shall

31  pay for the CLEP examinations required pursuant to this


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  1  section from the funds appropriated from the Educational

  2  Enhancement Trust Fund. Institutions shall pay no more than

  3  $46 per examination for the program, which shall include

  4  access to a student guide to prepare for the test. The

  5  Department of Education shall negotiate with the College Board

  6  for a reduced rate for the examinations. The institution shall

  7  not charge the student for preparation and administration of

  8  the test, access to a student guide to prepare for the test,

  9  or recordkeeping and reporting of each student's test results

10  to the department.

11         (6)  The credit awarded pursuant to this section shall

12  apply toward the 120 hours of college credit required pursuant

13  to s. 240.115(6).

14         (7)  The maximum number of credit hours for which a

15  student is eligible to receive a Florida Bright Futures

16  Scholarship Program award shall be reduced by the number of

17  hours for which credit is awarded pursuant to this section.

18         (8)  Beginning with the 2002-2003 award recipients, the

19  Department of Education shall track and annually report on the

20  effectiveness of the program, and include information on the

21  number of students participating in the program; the CLEP

22  examinations taken and the passage rate of Florida Academic

23  Scholars and Florida Medallion Scholars award recipients; the

24  use of Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate

25  examinations and dual enrollment courses to satisfy the

26  requirements of the program; and the course credit provided.

27         Section 43.  Notwithstanding subsection (7) of section

28  3 of chapter 2000-321, Laws of Florida, section 240.551,

29  Florida Statutes, shall not stand repealed on January 7, 2003,

30  and is reenacted and amended to read:

31         240.551  Florida Prepaid College Program.--


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  1         (1)  LEGISLATIVE INTENT.--The Legislature recognizes

  2  that educational opportunity at the postsecondary level is a

  3  critical state interest.  It further recognizes that

  4  educational opportunity is best ensured through the provision

  5  of postsecondary institutions that are geographically and

  6  financially accessible. Accordingly, it is the intent of the

  7  Legislature that a program be established through which many

  8  of the costs associated with postsecondary attendance may be

  9  paid in advance and fixed at a guaranteed level for the

10  duration of undergraduate enrollment.  It is similarly the

11  intent of the Legislature to provide a program that fosters

12  timely financial planning for postsecondary attendance and to

13  encourage employer participation in such planning through

14  program contributions on behalf of employees and the

15  dependents of employees.

16         (2)  DEFINITIONS.--

17         (a)  "Advance payment contract" means a contract

18  entered into by the board and a purchaser pursuant to this

19  section.

20         (b)  "Board" means the Florida Prepaid College Board.

21         (c)  "Fund" means the Florida Prepaid College Trust

22  Fund.

23         (d)  "Program" means the Florida Prepaid College

24  Program.

25         (e)  "Purchaser" means a person who makes or is

26  obligated to make advance registration or dormitory residence

27  payments in accordance with an advance payment contract.

28         (f)  "Qualified beneficiary" means:

29         1.  A resident of this state at the time a purchaser

30  enters into an advance payment contract on behalf of the

31  resident;


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  1         2.  A nonresident who is the child of a noncustodial

  2  parent who is a resident of this state at the time that such

  3  parent enters into an advance payment contract on behalf of

  4  the child; or

  5         3.  For purposes of advance payment contracts entered

  6  into pursuant to subsection (22), a graduate of an accredited

  7  high school in this state who is a resident of this state at

  8  the time he or she is designated to receive the benefits of

  9  the advance payment contract.

10         (g)  "Registration fee" means matriculation fee,

11  financial aid fee, building fee, and Capital Improvement Trust

12  Fund fee.

13         (h)  "State postsecondary institution" means any

14  community college identified in s. 240.3031 or university

15  identified in s. 240.2011.

16         (3)  FLORIDA PREPAID COLLEGE PROGRAM; CREATION.--There

17  is created a Florida Prepaid College Program to provide a

18  medium through which the cost of registration and dormitory

19  residence may be paid in advance of enrollment in a state

20  postsecondary institution at a rate lower than the projected

21  corresponding cost at the time of actual enrollment.  Such

22  payments shall be combined and invested in a manner that

23  yields, at a minimum, sufficient interest to generate the

24  difference between the prepaid amount and the cost of

25  registration and dormitory residence at the time of actual

26  enrollment. Students who enroll in a state postsecondary

27  institution pursuant to this section shall be charged no fees

28  in excess of the terms delineated in the advance payment

29  contract.

30         (4)  FLORIDA PREPAID COLLEGE TRUST FUND.--There is

31  created within the State Board of Administration the Florida


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  1  Prepaid College Trust Fund.  The fund shall consist of state

  2  appropriations, moneys acquired from other governmental or

  3  private sources, and moneys remitted in accordance with

  4  advance payment contracts. All funds deposited into the trust

  5  fund may be invested pursuant to s. 215.47. Dividends,

  6  interest, and gains accruing to the trust fund shall increase

  7  the total funds available for the program. Notwithstanding the

  8  provisions of chapter 717, funds associated with terminated

  9  contracts pursuant to subsection (12) and canceled contracts

10  for which no refunds have been claimed shall increase the

11  total funds available for the program. However, the board

12  shall establish procedures for notifying purchasers who

13  subsequently cancel their contracts of any unclaimed refund

14  and shall establish a time period after which no refund may be

15  claimed by a purchaser who canceled a contract. Any balance

16  contained within the fund at the end of a fiscal year shall

17  remain therein and shall be available for carrying out the

18  purposes of the program.  In the event that dividends,

19  interest, and gains exceed the amount necessary for program

20  administration and disbursements, the board may designate an

21  additional percentage of the fund to serve as a contingency

22  fund.  Moneys contained within the fund shall be exempt from

23  the investment requirements of s. 18.10. Any funds of a

24  direct-support organization created pursuant to subsection

25  (22) shall be exempt from the provisions of this subsection.

26         (5)  PROGRAM ADMINISTRATION.--

27         (a)  The Florida Prepaid College Program shall be

28  administered by the Florida Prepaid College Board as an agency

29  of the state.  The Florida Prepaid College Board is hereby

30  created as a body corporate with all the powers of a body

31  corporate for the purposes delineated in this section.  For


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  1  the purposes of s. 6, Art. IV of the State Constitution, the

  2  board shall be assigned to and administratively housed within

  3  the State Board of Administration, but it shall independently

  4  exercise the powers and duties specified in this section.

  5         (b)  The board shall consist of seven members to be

  6  composed of the Insurance Commissioner and Treasurer, the

  7  Comptroller, the Chancellor of the Board of Regents, the

  8  Executive Director of the State Board of Community Colleges,

  9  and three members appointed by the Governor and subject to

10  confirmation by the Senate.  Each member appointed by the

11  Governor shall possess knowledge, skill, and experience in the

12  areas of accounting, actuary, risk management, or investment

13  management.  Each member of the board not appointed by the

14  Governor may name a designee to serve the board on behalf of

15  the member; however, any designee so named shall meet the

16  qualifications required of gubernatorial appointees to the

17  board. Members appointed by the Governor shall serve terms of

18  3 years.  Any person appointed to fill a vacancy on the board

19  shall be appointed in a like manner and shall serve for only

20  the unexpired term.  Any member shall be eligible for

21  reappointment and shall serve until a successor qualifies.

22  Members of the board shall serve without compensation but

23  shall be reimbursed for per diem and travel in accordance with

24  s. 112.061.  Each member of the board shall file a full and

25  public disclosure of his or her financial interests pursuant

26  to s. 8, Art. II of the State Constitution and corresponding

27  statute.

28         (c)  The board shall annually elect a board member to

29  serve as chair and a board member to serve as vice chair and

30  shall designate a secretary-treasurer who need not be a member

31  of the board.  The secretary-treasurer shall keep a record of


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  1  the proceedings of the board and shall be the custodian of all

  2  printed material filed with or by the board and of its

  3  official seal.  Notwithstanding the existence of vacancies on

  4  the board, a majority of the members shall constitute a

  5  quorum. The board shall take no official action in the absence

  6  of a quorum.  The board shall meet, at a minimum, on a

  7  quarterly basis at the call of the chair.

  8         (6)  FLORIDA PREPAID COLLEGE BOARD; DUTIES.--The board

  9  shall:

10         (a)  Appoint an executive director to serve as the

11  chief administrative and operational officer of the board and

12  to perform other duties assigned to him or her by the board.

13         (b)  Administer the fund in a manner that is

14  sufficiently actuarially sound to defray the obligations of

15  the program. The board shall annually evaluate or cause to be

16  evaluated the actuarial soundness of the fund. If the board

17  perceives a need for additional assets in order to preserve

18  actuarial soundness, the board may adjust the terms of

19  subsequent advance payment contracts to ensure such soundness.

20         (c)  Establish a comprehensive investment plan for the

21  purposes of this section with the approval of the State Board

22  of Administration. The comprehensive investment plan shall

23  specify the investment policies to be utilized by the board in

24  its administration of the fund. The board may place assets of

25  the fund in savings accounts or use the same to purchase fixed

26  or variable life insurance or annuity contracts, securities,

27  evidence of indebtedness, or other investment products

28  pursuant to the comprehensive investment plan and in such

29  proportions as may be designated or approved under that plan.

30  Such insurance, annuity, savings, or investment products shall

31  be underwritten and offered in compliance with the applicable


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  1  federal and state laws, regulations, and rules by persons who

  2  are duly authorized by applicable federal and state

  3  authorities. Within the comprehensive investment plan, the

  4  board may authorize investment vehicles, or products incident

  5  thereto, as may be available or offered by qualified companies

  6  or persons. A contract purchaser may not direct the investment

  7  of his or her contribution to the trust fund, and a contract

  8  beneficiary may not direct the contribution made on his or her

  9  behalf to the trust fund. Board members and employees of the

10  board are not prohibited from purchasing advance payment

11  contracts by virtue of their fiduciary responsibilities as

12  members of the board or official duties as employees of the

13  board.

14         (d)  Solicit proposals and contract, pursuant to s.

15  287.057, for the marketing of the Florida Prepaid College

16  Program. The entity designated pursuant to this paragraph

17  shall serve as a centralized marketing agent for the program

18  and shall be solely responsible for the marketing of the

19  program. Any materials produced for the purpose of marketing

20  the program shall be submitted to the board for review. No

21  such materials shall be made available to the public before

22  the materials are approved by the board. Any educational

23  institution may distribute marketing materials produced for

24  the program; however, all such materials shall have been

25  approved by the board prior to distribution. Neither the state

26  nor the board shall be liable for misrepresentation of the

27  program by a marketing agent.

28         (e)  Solicit proposals and contract, pursuant to s.

29  287.057, for a trustee services firm to select and supervise

30  investment programs on behalf of the board. The goals of the

31  board in selecting a trustee services firm shall be to obtain


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  1  the highest standards of professional trustee services, to

  2  allow all qualified firms interested in providing such

  3  services equal consideration, and to provide such services to

  4  the state at no cost and to the purchasers at the lowest cost

  5  possible. The trustee services firm shall agree to meet the

  6  obligations of the board to qualified beneficiaries if moneys

  7  in the fund fail to offset the obligations of the board as a

  8  result of imprudent selection or supervision of investment

  9  programs by such firm. Evaluations of proposals submitted

10  pursuant to this paragraph shall include, but not be limited

11  to, the following criteria:

12         1.  Adequacy of trustee services for supervision and

13  management of the program, including current operations and

14  staff organization and commitment of management to the

15  proposal.

16         2.  Capability to execute program responsibilities

17  within time and regulatory constraints.

18         3.  Past experience in trustee services and current

19  ability to maintain regular and continuous interactions with

20  the board, records administrator, and product provider.

21         4.  The minimum purchaser participation assumed within

22  the proposal and any additional requirements of purchasers.

23         5.  Adequacy of technical assistance and services

24  proposed for staff.

25         6.  Adequacy of a management system for evaluating and

26  improving overall trustee services to the program.

27         7.  Adequacy of facilities, equipment, and electronic

28  data processing services.

29         8.  Detailed projections of administrative costs,

30  including the amount and type of insurance coverage, and

31  detailed projections of total costs.


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  1         (f)  Solicit proposals and contract, pursuant to s.

  2  287.057, for product providers to develop investment

  3  portfolios on behalf of the board to achieve the purposes of

  4  this section. Product providers shall be limited to authorized

  5  insurers as defined in s. 624.09, banks as defined in s.

  6  658.12, associations as defined in s. 665.012, authorized

  7  Securities and Exchange Commission investment advisers, and

  8  investment companies as defined in the Investment Company Act

  9  of 1940. All product providers shall have their principal

10  place of business and corporate charter located and registered

11  in the United States. In addition, each product provider shall

12  agree to meet the obligations of the board to qualified

13  beneficiaries if moneys in the fund fail to offset the

14  obligations of the board as a result of imprudent investing by

15  such provider. Each authorized insurer shall evidence superior

16  performance overall on an acceptable level of surety in

17  meeting its obligations to its policyholders and other

18  contractual obligations. Only qualified public depositories

19  approved by the Insurance Commissioner and Treasurer shall be

20  eligible for board consideration. Each investment company

21  shall provide investment plans as specified within the request

22  for proposals. The goals of the board in selecting a product

23  provider company shall be to provide all purchasers with the

24  most secure, well-diversified, and beneficially administered

25  postsecondary education expense plan possible, to allow all

26  qualified firms interested in providing such services equal

27  consideration, and to provide such services to the state at no

28  cost and to the purchasers at the lowest cost possible.

29  Evaluations of proposals submitted pursuant to this paragraph

30  shall include, but not be limited to, the following criteria:

31  


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  1         1.  Fees and other costs charged to purchasers that

  2  affect account values or operational costs related to the

  3  program.

  4         2.  Past and current investment performance, including

  5  investment and interest rate history, guaranteed minimum rates

  6  of interest, consistency of investment performance, and any

  7  terms and conditions under which moneys are held.

  8         3.  Past experience and ability to provide timely and

  9  accurate service in the areas of records administration,

10  benefit payments, investment management, and complaint

11  resolution.

12         4.  Financial history and current financial strength

13  and capital adequacy to provide products, including operating

14  procedures and other methods of protecting program assets.

15         (7)  FLORIDA PREPAID COLLEGE BOARD; POWERS.--The board

16  shall have the powers necessary or proper to carry out the

17  provisions of this section, including, but not limited to, the

18  power to:

19         (a)  Adopt an official seal and rules.

20         (b)  Sue and be sued.

21         (c)  Make and execute contracts and other necessary

22  instruments.

23         (d)  Establish agreements or other transactions with

24  federal, state, and local agencies, including state

25  universities and community colleges.

26         (e)  Invest funds not required for immediate

27  disbursement.

28         (f)  Appear in its own behalf before boards,

29  commissions, or other governmental agencies.

30         (g)  Hold, buy, and sell any instruments, obligations,

31  securities, and property determined appropriate by the board.


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  1         (h)  Require a reasonable length of state residence for

  2  qualified beneficiaries.

  3         (i)  Restrict the number of participants in the

  4  community college plan, university plan, and dormitory

  5  residence plan, respectively. However, any person denied

  6  participation solely on the basis of such restriction shall be

  7  granted priority for participation during the succeeding year.

  8         (j)  Segregate contributions and payments to the fund

  9  into various accounts and funds.

10         (k)  Contract for necessary goods and services, employ

11  necessary personnel, and engage the services of private

12  consultants, actuaries, managers, legal counsel, and auditors

13  for administrative or technical assistance.

14         (l)  Solicit and accept gifts, grants, loans, and other

15  aids from any source or participate in any other way in any

16  government program to carry out the purposes of this section.

17         (m)  Require and collect administrative fees and

18  charges in connection with any transaction and impose

19  reasonable penalties, including default, for delinquent

20  payments or for entering into an advance payment contract on a

21  fraudulent basis.

22         (n)  Procure insurance against any loss in connection

23  with the property, assets, and activities of the fund or the

24  board.

25         (o)  Impose reasonable time limits on use of the

26  tuition benefits provided by the program. However, any such

27  limitation shall be specified within the advance payment

28  contract.

29         (p)  Delineate the terms and conditions under which

30  payments may be withdrawn from the fund and impose reasonable

31  fees and charges for such withdrawal. Such terms and


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  1  conditions shall be specified within the advance payment

  2  contract.

  3         (q)  Provide for the receipt of contributions in lump

  4  sums or installment payments.

  5         (r)  Require that purchasers of advance payment

  6  contracts verify, under oath, any requests for contract

  7  conversions, substitutions, transfers, cancellations, refund

  8  requests, or contract changes of any nature. Verification

  9  shall be accomplished as authorized and provided for in s.

10  92.525(1)(a).

11         (s)  Delegate responsibility for administration of the

12  comprehensive investment plan required in paragraph (6)(c) to

13  a person the board determines to be qualified. Such person

14  shall be compensated by the board. Directly or through such

15  person, the board may contract with a private corporation or

16  institution to provide such services as may be a part of the

17  comprehensive investment plan or as may be deemed necessary or

18  proper by the board or such person, including, but not limited

19  to, providing consolidated billing, individual and collective

20  recordkeeping and accountings, and asset purchase, control,

21  and safekeeping.

22         (t)  Endorse insurance coverage written exclusively for

23  the purpose of protecting advance payment contracts, and the

24  purchasers and beneficiaries thereof, which may be issued in

25  the form of a group life policy and which is exempt from the

26  provisions of part V of chapter 627.

27         (u)  Solicit proposals and contract, pursuant to s.

28  287.057, for the services of a records administrator. The

29  goals of the board in selecting a records administrator shall

30  be to provide all purchasers with the most secure,

31  well-diversified, and beneficially administered postsecondary


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  1  education expense plan possible, to allow all qualified firms

  2  interested in providing such services equal consideration, and

  3  to provide such services to the state at no cost and to the

  4  purchasers at the lowest cost possible. Evaluations of

  5  proposals submitted pursuant to this paragraph shall include,

  6  but not be limited to, the following criteria:

  7         1.  Fees and other costs charged to purchasers that

  8  affect account values or operational costs related to the

  9  program.

10         2.  Past experience in records administration and

11  current ability to provide timely and accurate service in the

12  areas of records administration, audit and reconciliation,

13  plan communication, participant service, and complaint

14  resolution.

15         3.  Sufficient staff and computer capability for the

16  scope and level of service expected by the board.

17         4.  Financial history and current financial strength

18  and capital adequacy to provide administrative services

19  required by the board.

20         (v)  Establish other policies, procedures, and criteria

21  to implement and administer the provisions of this section.

22         (w)  Adopt procedures to govern contract dispute

23  proceedings between the board and its vendors.

24         (8)  QUALIFIED STATE TUITION PROGRAM

25  STATUS.--Notwithstanding any other provision of this section,

26  the board may adopt rules necessary to enable the program to

27  retain its status as a "qualified state tuition program" in

28  order to maintain its tax exempt status or other similar

29  status of the program, purchasers, and qualified beneficiaries

30  under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as defined in s.

31  220.03(1). The board shall inform purchasers of changes to the


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  1  tax or securities status of contracts purchased through the

  2  program.

  3         (9)  PREPAID COLLEGE PLANS.--At a minimum, the board

  4  shall make advance payment contracts available for two

  5  independent plans to be known as the community college plan

  6  and the university plan. The board may also make advance

  7  payment contracts available for a dormitory residence plan.

  8         (a)1.  Through the community college plan, the advance

  9  payment contract shall provide prepaid registration fees for a

10  specified number of undergraduate semester credit hours not to

11  exceed the average number of hours required for the conference

12  of an associate degree. The cost of participation in the

13  community college plan shall be based primarily on the average

14  current and projected registration fees within the Florida

15  Community College System and the number of years expected to

16  elapse between the purchase of the plan on behalf of a

17  qualified beneficiary and the exercise of the benefits

18  provided in the plan by such beneficiary. Qualified

19  beneficiaries shall bear the cost of any laboratory fees

20  associated with enrollment in specific courses. Each qualified

21  beneficiary shall be classified as a resident for tuition

22  purposes, pursuant to s. 240.1201, regardless of his or her

23  actual legal residence.

24         2.  Effective July 1, 1998, the board may provide

25  advance payment contracts for additional fees delineated in s.

26  240.35, not to exceed the average number of hours required for

27  the conference of an associate degree, in conjunction with

28  advance payment contracts for registration fees. The cost of

29  purchasing such fees shall be based primarily on the average

30  current and projected fees within the Florida Community

31  College System and the number of years expected to elapse


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  1  between the purchase of the plan on behalf of the beneficiary

  2  and the exercise of benefits provided in the plan by such

  3  beneficiary. Community college plan contracts purchased prior

  4  to July 1, 1998, shall be limited to the payment of

  5  registration fees as defined in subsection (2).

  6         (b)1.  Through the university plan, the advance payment

  7  contract shall provide prepaid registration fees for a

  8  specified number of undergraduate semester credit hours not to

  9  exceed the average number of hours required for the conference

10  of a baccalaureate degree. The cost of participation in the

11  university plan shall be based primarily on the current and

12  projected registration fees within the State University System

13  and the number of years expected to elapse between the

14  purchase of the plan on behalf of a qualified beneficiary and

15  the exercise of the benefits provided in the plan by such

16  beneficiary. Qualified beneficiaries shall bear the cost of

17  any laboratory fees associated with enrollment in specific

18  courses. Each qualified beneficiary shall be classified as a

19  resident for tuition purposes pursuant to s. 240.1201,

20  regardless of his or her actual legal residence.

21         2.  Effective July 1, 1998, the board may provide

22  advance payment contracts for additional fees delineated in s.

23  240.235(1), for a specified number of undergraduate semester

24  credit hours not to exceed the average number of hours

25  required for the conference of a baccalaureate degree, in

26  conjunction with advance payment contracts for registration

27  fees. Such contracts shall provide prepaid coverage for the

28  sum of such fees, to a maximum of 45 percent of the cost of

29  registration fees. The costs of purchasing such fees shall be

30  based primarily on the average current and projected cost of

31  these fees within the State University System and the number


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  1  of years expected to elapse between the purchase of the plan

  2  on behalf of the qualified beneficiary and the exercise of the

  3  benefits provided in the plan by such beneficiary. University

  4  plan contracts purchased prior to July 1, 1998, shall be

  5  limited to the payment of registration fees as defined in

  6  subsection (2).

  7         (c)  Through the dormitory residence plan, the advance

  8  payment contract may provide prepaid housing fees for a

  9  maximum of 10 semesters of full-time undergraduate enrollment

10  in a state university. Dormitory residence plans shall be

11  purchased in increments of 2 semesters. The cost of

12  participation in the dormitory residence plan shall be based

13  primarily on the average current and projected housing fees

14  within the State University System and the number of years

15  expected to elapse between the purchase of the plan on behalf

16  of a qualified beneficiary and the exercise of the benefits

17  provided in the plan by such beneficiary. Qualified

18  beneficiaries shall have the highest priority in the

19  assignment of housing within university residence halls.

20  Qualified beneficiaries shall bear the cost of any additional

21  elective charges such as laundry service or long-distance

22  telephone service. Each state university may specify the

23  residence halls or other university-held residences eligible

24  for inclusion in the plan. In addition, any state university

25  may request immediate termination of a dormitory residence

26  contract based on a violation or multiple violations of rules

27  of the residence hall or other university-held residences. In

28  the event that sufficient housing is not available for all

29  qualified beneficiaries, the board shall refund the purchaser

30  or qualified beneficiary an amount equal to the fees charged

31  for dormitory residence during that semester. If a qualified


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  1  beneficiary fails to be admitted to a state university or

  2  chooses to attend a community college that operates one or

  3  more dormitories or residency opportunities, or has one or

  4  more dormitories or residency opportunities operated by the

  5  community college direct-support organization, the qualified

  6  beneficiary may transfer or cause to have transferred to the

  7  community college, or community college direct-support

  8  organization, the fees associated with dormitory residence.

  9  Dormitory fees transferred to the community college or

10  community college direct-support organization may not exceed

11  the maximum fees charged for state university dormitory

12  residence for the purposes of this section, or the fees

13  charged for community college or community college

14  direct-support organization dormitories or residency

15  opportunities, whichever is less.

16         (10)  TRANSFER OF BENEFITS TO PRIVATE AND OUT-OF-STATE

17  COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES AND TO AREA TECHNICAL CENTERS.--A

18  qualified beneficiary may apply the benefits of an advance

19  payment contract toward:

20         (a)  Any eligible independent college or university. An

21  independent college or university that is located and

22  chartered in Florida, that is not for profit, that is

23  accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern

24  Association of Colleges and Schools or the Accrediting Council

25  for Independent Colleges and Schools Accrediting Commission of

26  the Association of Independent Colleges and Schools, and that

27  confers degrees as defined in s. 246.021, is eligible for such

28  application. The board shall transfer, or cause to have

29  transferred, to the eligible independent college or university

30  designated by the qualified beneficiary an amount not to

31  exceed the redemption value of the advance payment contract at


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  1  within a state postsecondary institution. If the cost of

  2  registration or housing fees at the independent college or

  3  university is less than the corresponding fees at a state

  4  postsecondary institution, the amount transferred shall not

  5  exceed the actual cost of registration or housing fees. A

  6  transfer authorized under this paragraph may not exceed the

  7  number of semester credit hours or semesters of dormitory

  8  residence contracted on behalf of a qualified beneficiary.

  9         (b)  An eligible out-of-state college or university. An

10  out-of-state college or university that is not for profit and

11  is accredited by a regional accrediting association, and that

12  confers degrees, is eligible for such application. The board

13  shall transfer, or cause to have transferred, an amount not to

14  exceed the redemption value of the advance payment contract at

15  a state postsecondary institution or the original purchase

16  price plus 5 percent compounded interest, whichever is less,

17  after assessment of a reasonable transfer fee. If the cost of

18  registration or housing fees charged the qualified beneficiary

19  at the eligible out-of-state college or university is less

20  than this calculated amount, the amount transferred shall not

21  exceed the actual cost of registration or housing fees. Any

22  remaining amount shall be transferred in subsequent semesters

23  until the transfer value is depleted. A transfer authorized

24  under this paragraph may not exceed the number of semester

25  credit hours or semesters of dormitory residence contracted on

26  behalf of a qualified beneficiary.

27         (c)  An applied technology diploma program or

28  vocational certificate program conducted by a community

29  college listed in s. 240.3031 or an area technical center

30  operated by a district school board. The board shall transfer

31  or cause to be transferred to the community college or area


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  1  technical center designated by the qualified beneficiary an

  2  amount not to exceed the redemption value of the advance

  3  payment contract at within a state postsecondary institution.

  4  If the cost of the fees charged by the college or center, as

  5  authorized in s. 239.117, is less than the corresponding fees

  6  at a state postsecondary institution, the amount transferred

  7  may not exceed the actual cost of the fees. A transfer

  8  authorized under this paragraph may not exceed the number of

  9  semester credit hours contracted on behalf of a qualified

10  beneficiary.

11  

12  Notwithstanding any other provision in this section, an

13  institution must be an "eligible educational institution"

14  under s. 529 of the Internal Revenue Code to be eligible for

15  the transfer of advance payment contract benefits.

16         (11)  ADVANCE PAYMENT CONTRACTS; CONTENTS.--The board

17  shall construct advance payment contracts for registration and

18  may construct advance payment contracts for dormitory

19  residence as provided in this section. Advance payment

20  contracts constructed for the purposes of this section shall

21  be exempt from chapter 517 and the Florida Insurance Code.

22  Such contracts shall include, but not be limited to, the

23  following:

24         (a)  The amount of the payment or payments and the

25  number of payments required from a purchaser on behalf of a

26  qualified beneficiary.

27         (b)  The terms and conditions under which purchasers

28  shall remit payments, including, but not limited to, the date

29  or dates upon which each payment shall be due.

30         (c)  Provisions for late payment charges and for

31  default.


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  1         (d)  Provisions for penalty fees for withdrawals from

  2  the fund.

  3         (e)  Except for an advance payment contract entered

  4  into pursuant to subsection (22) or subsection (23), the name

  5  and date of birth of the qualified beneficiary on whose behalf

  6  the contract is drawn and the terms and conditions under which

  7  another person may be substituted as the qualified

  8  beneficiary.

  9         (f)  The name of any person who may terminate the

10  contract. The terms of the contract shall specify whether the

11  contract may be terminated by the purchaser, the qualified

12  beneficiary, a specific designated person, or any combination

13  of these persons.

14         (g)  The terms and conditions under which a contract

15  may be terminated, modified, or converted, the name of the

16  person entitled to any refund due as a result of termination

17  of the contract pursuant to such terms and conditions, and the

18  amount of refund, if any, due to the person so named.

19         (h)  The number of semester credit hours or semesters

20  of dormitory residence contracted by the purchaser.

21         (i)  The state postsecondary system toward which the

22  contracted credit hours or semesters of dormitory residence

23  will be applied.

24         (j)  The assumption of a contractual obligation by the

25  board to the qualified beneficiary to provide for a specified

26  number of semester credit hours of undergraduate instruction

27  at a state postsecondary institution, not to exceed the

28  average number of credit hours required for the conference of

29  the degree that corresponds to the plan purchased on behalf of

30  the qualified beneficiary or to provide for a specified number

31  of semesters of dormitory residence, not to exceed the number


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  1  of semesters of full-time enrollment required for the

  2  conference of a baccalaureate degree.

  3         (k)  Other terms and conditions deemed by the board to

  4  be necessary or proper.

  5         (12)  DURATION OF BENEFITS; ADVANCE PAYMENT

  6  CONTRACT.--An advance payment contract may provide that

  7  contracts which have not been terminated or the benefits

  8  exercised within a specified period of time shall be

  9  considered terminated.  Time expended by a qualified

10  beneficiary as an active duty member of any of the armed

11  services of the United States shall be added to the period of

12  time specified pursuant to this subsection.  No purchaser or

13  qualified beneficiary whose advance payment contract is

14  terminated pursuant to this subsection shall be entitled to a

15  refund.  The board shall retain any moneys paid by the

16  purchaser for an advance payment contract that has been

17  terminated in accordance with this subsection.  Such moneys

18  retained by the board are exempt from chapter 717, and such

19  retained moneys must be used by the board to further the

20  purposes of this section.

21         (13)  REFUNDS.--

22         (a)  Except as provided in paragraphs (b), and (c), and

23  (f), no refund shall exceed the amount paid into the fund by

24  the purchaser.

25         (b)  If the beneficiary is awarded a scholarship, the

26  terms of which cover the benefits included in the advance

27  payment contracts, moneys paid for the purchase of the advance

28  payment contracts shall be refunded returned to the purchaser

29  in semester installments coinciding with the matriculation by

30  the beneficiary in an amount which, in total, does not exceed

31  the redemption value of the advance payment contract at a


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  1  state postsecondary institution amounts of either the original

  2  purchase price plus 5 percent compounded interest, or the

  3  current rates at state postsecondary institutions, whichever

  4  is less.

  5         (c)  In the event of the death or total disability of

  6  the beneficiary, moneys paid for the purchase of advance

  7  payment contracts shall be refunded returned to the purchaser

  8  in an amount not to exceed the redemption value of the advance

  9  payment contract at a state postsecondary institution together

10  with 5 percent compounded interest, or the current rates at

11  state postsecondary institutions, whichever is less.

12         (d)  If an advance payment contract is converted from

13  one registration plan to a plan of lesser value, the amount

14  refunded shall not exceed the difference between the amount

15  paid for the original contract and the amount that would have

16  been paid for the contract to which the plan is converted had

17  the converted plan been purchased under the same payment plan

18  at the time the original advance payment contract was

19  executed.

20         (e)  No refund shall be authorized through an advance

21  payment contract for any school year partially attended but

22  not completed.  For purposes of this section, a school year

23  partially attended but not completed shall mean any one

24  semester whereby the student is still enrolled at the

25  conclusion of the official drop-add period, but withdraws

26  before the end of such semester. If a beneficiary does not

27  complete a community college plan or university plan for

28  reasons other than specified in paragraph (c), the purchaser

29  shall receive a refund of the amount paid into the fund for

30  the remaining unattended years of the advance payment contract

31  pursuant to rules promulgated by the board.


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  1         (14)  CONFIDENTIALITY OF ACCOUNT

  2  INFORMATION.--Information that identifies the purchasers or

  3  beneficiaries of any plan promulgated under this section and

  4  their advance payment account activities is exempt from the

  5  provisions of s. 119.07(1). However, the board may authorize

  6  the program's records administrator to release such

  7  information to a community college, college, or university in

  8  which a beneficiary may enroll or is enrolled. Community

  9  colleges, colleges, and universities shall maintain such

10  information as exempt from the provisions of s. 119.07(1).

11         (15)  OBLIGATIONS OF BOARD; PAYMENT.--The state shall

12  agree to meet the obligations of the board to qualified

13  beneficiaries if moneys in the fund fail to offset the

14  obligations of the board. The Legislature shall appropriate to

15  the Florida Prepaid College Trust Fund the amount necessary to

16  meet the obligations of the board to qualified beneficiaries.

17         (16)  ASSETS OF THE FUND; EXPENDITURE PRIORITY.--The

18  assets of the fund shall be maintained, invested, and expended

19  solely for the purposes of this section and shall not be

20  loaned, transferred, or otherwise used by the state for any

21  purpose other than the purposes of this section.  This

22  subsection shall not be construed to prohibit the board from

23  investing in, by purchase or otherwise, bonds, notes, or other

24  obligations of the state or an agency or instrumentality of

25  the state. Unless otherwise specified by the board, assets of

26  the fund shall be expended in the following order of priority:

27         (a)  To make payments to state postsecondary

28  institutions on behalf of qualified beneficiaries.

29         (b)  To make refunds upon termination of advance

30  payment contracts.

31  


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  1         (c)  To pay the costs of program administration and

  2  operations.

  3         (17)  EXEMPTION FROM CLAIMS OF CREDITORS.--Moneys paid

  4  into or out of the fund by or on behalf of a purchaser or

  5  qualified beneficiary of an advance payment contract made

  6  under this section, which contract has not been terminated,

  7  are exempt, as provided by s. 222.22, from all claims of

  8  creditors of the purchaser or the beneficiary. Neither moneys

  9  paid into the program nor benefits accrued through the program

10  may be pledged for the purpose of securing a loan.

11         (18)  PAYROLL DEDUCTION AUTHORITY.--The state or any

12  state agency, county, municipality, or other political

13  subdivision may, by contract or collective bargaining

14  agreement, agree with any employee to remit payments toward

15  advance payment contracts through payroll deductions made by

16  the appropriate officer or officers of the state, state

17  agency, county, municipality, or political subdivision.  Such

18  payments shall be held and administered in accordance with

19  this section.

20         (19)  DISCLAIMER.--Nothing in this section shall be

21  construed as a promise or guarantee that a qualified

22  beneficiary will be admitted to a state postsecondary

23  institution or to a particular state postsecondary

24  institution, will be allowed to continue enrollment at a state

25  postsecondary institution after admission, or will be

26  graduated from a state postsecondary institution.

27         (20)  PROGRAM TERMINATION.--In the event that the state

28  determines the program to be financially infeasible, the state

29  may discontinue the provision of the program.  Any qualified

30  beneficiary who has been accepted by and is enrolled or is

31  within 5 years of enrollment in an eligible independent


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  1  college or university or state postsecondary institution shall

  2  be entitled to exercise the complete benefits for which he or

  3  she has contracted. All other contract holders shall receive a

  4  refund of the amount paid in and an additional amount in the

  5  nature of interest at a rate that corresponds, at a minimum,

  6  to the prevailing interest rates for savings accounts provided

  7  by banks and savings and loan associations.

  8         (21)  ANNUAL REPORT.--The board shall annually prepare

  9  or cause to be prepared a report setting forth in appropriate

10  detail an accounting of the fund and a description of the

11  financial condition of the program at the close of each fiscal

12  year. Such report shall be submitted to the President of the

13  Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and

14  members of the State Board of Education on or before March 31

15  each year. In addition, the board shall make the report

16  available to purchasers of advance payment contracts. The

17  board shall provide to the Board of Regents and the State

18  Board of Community Colleges, by March 31 each year, complete

19  advance payment contract sales information, including

20  projected postsecondary enrollments of qualified

21  beneficiaries. The accounts of the fund shall be subject to

22  annual audits by the Auditor General or his or her designee.

23         (22)  DIRECT-SUPPORT ORGANIZATION; AUTHORITY.--

24         (a)  The board may establish a direct-support

25  organization which is:

26         1.  A Florida corporation, not for profit, incorporated

27  under the provisions of chapter 617 and approved by the

28  Secretary of State.

29         2.  Organized and operated exclusively to receive,

30  hold, invest, and administer property and to make expenditures

31  to or for the benefit of the program.


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  1         3.  An organization which the board, after review, has

  2  certified to be operating in a manner consistent with the

  3  goals of the program and in the best interests of the state.

  4  Unless so certified, the organization may not use the name of

  5  the program.

  6         (b)  The direct-support organization shall operate

  7  under written contract with the board. The contract must

  8  provide for:

  9         1.  Approval of the articles of incorporation and

10  bylaws of the direct-support organization by the board.

11         2.  Submission of an annual budget for the approval of

12  the board. The budget must comply with rules adopted by the

13  board.

14         3.  An annual financial and compliance audit of its

15  financial accounts and records by an independent certified

16  public accountant in accordance with rules adopted by the

17  board.

18         4.  Certification by the board that the direct-support

19  organization is complying with the terms of the contract and

20  in a manner consistent with the goals and purposes of the

21  board and in the best interest of the state. Such

22  certification must be made annually and reported in the

23  official minutes of a meeting of the board.

24         5.  The reversion to the board, or to the state if the

25  board ceases to exist, of moneys and property held in trust by

26  the direct-support organization for the benefit of the board

27  or program if the direct-support organization is no longer

28  approved to operate for the board or if the board ceases to

29  exist.

30  

31  


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  1         6.  The fiscal year of the direct-support organization,

  2  which must begin July 1 of each year and end June 30 of the

  3  following year.

  4         7.  The disclosure of material provisions of the

  5  contract and of the distinction between the board and the

  6  direct-support organization to donors of gifts, contributions,

  7  or bequests, and such disclosure on all promotional and

  8  fundraising publications.

  9         (c)  An annual financial and compliance audit of the

10  financial accounts and records of the direct-support

11  organization must be performed by an independent certified

12  public accountant. The audit must be submitted to the board

13  for review and approval. Upon approval, the board shall

14  certify the audit report to the Auditor General for review.

15  The board and Auditor General shall have the authority to

16  require and receive from the organization or its independent

17  auditor any detail or supplemental data relative to the

18  operation of the organization.

19         (d)  The identity of donors who desire to remain

20  anonymous shall be confidential and exempt from the provisions

21  of s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I of the State

22  Constitution, and such anonymity shall be maintained in the

23  auditor's report. Information received by the organization

24  that is otherwise confidential or exempt by law shall retain

25  such status. Any sensitive, personal information regarding

26  contract beneficiaries, including their identities, is exempt

27  from the provisions of s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I of

28  the State Constitution.

29         (e)  The chair and the executive director of the board

30  shall be directors of the direct-support organization and

31  


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  1  shall jointly name, at a minimum, three other individuals to

  2  serve as directors of the organization.

  3         (f)  The board may authorize the direct-support

  4  organization established in this subsection to use program

  5  property, except money, and use facilities and personal

  6  services subject to the provisions of this section. If the

  7  direct-support organization does not provide equal employment

  8  opportunities to all persons regardless of race, color,

  9  religion, sex, age, or national origin, it may not use the

10  property, facilities, or personal services of the board. For

11  the purposes of this subsection, the term "personal services"

12  includes full-time personnel and part-time personnel as well

13  as payroll processing as prescribed by rule of the board. The

14  board shall adopt rules prescribing the procedures by which

15  the direct-support organization is governed and any conditions

16  with which such a direct-support organization must comply to

17  use property, facilities, or personal services of the board.

18         (g)  The board may invest funds of the direct-support

19  organization which have been allocated for the purchase of

20  advance payment contracts for scholarships with receipts for

21  advance payment contracts.

22         (23)  SCHOLARSHIPS.--A nonprofit organization described

23  in s. 501 (c)(3) of the United States Internal Revenue Code

24  and exempt from taxation under s. 501(a) of the United States

25  Internal Revenue Code may purchase advance payment contracts

26  for a scholarship program that has been approved by the board

27  and is operated by the purchasing organization.

28         Section 44.  Except as otherwise expressly provided in

29  this act, this act shall take effect upon becoming a law.

30  

31  


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