September 4, 2013
EDUCATION MANDATES ON SCHOOL DISTRICTS
By: Marybeth Sullivan, Legislative Analyst II
This report contains a list of statutory mandates imposed on Connecticut public school districts over the past few years.
The report updates and revises our February 2013 report (2013-R-0047) to include mandates adopted, eliminated, or modified in the 2013 legislative session.
Table 1 lists the mandates that apply to all local and regional school districts. It does not include obsolete and expired mandates and those that apply:
1. only to certain types of school districts, such as priority, alliance, or low-achieving school districts;
2. as a condition of receiving a state grant other than an Education Cost Sharing (ECS) grant; or
3. to all public agencies, such as the Freedom of Information Act requirements.
Table 1: Statutory Mandates on All Local and Regional School Districts
STATUTE (CGS §) /
PUBLIC ACT (PA)
Local and Regional Board Compliance with State Education Interests
● Finance educational program at least at minimum requirement.
● Provide educational opportunities for students to interact with students and teachers from other racial, ethnic, and economic backgrounds in order to reduce isolation.
Comply with order of State Board of Education (SBE) to remedy any failure or inability of a school district to implement the educational interest of the state.
Allow a student to graduate from high school upon successful completion of the academic advancement program established by the State Department of Education (SDE), beginning with the 2014-15 school year.
Public School Data
Participate in SDE's statewide public school information system and report required information about students and teachers.
Include state-assigned student identifiers on all official student documents, including transcripts, report cards, attendance records, disciplinary reports, and student withdrawal forms.
Implement new SDE system of accounting (“Chart of Accounts“) for school revenues by filing annual financial reports beginning in FY 15.
State Mastery Examinations
● Administer state mastery exams to students in grades 3-8 and 10 or 11.
● Certify on student's permanent record and transcript if a student exceeds the mastery goal level on each component of the 10th or 11th grade exam.
Reading Assessments for Kindergarten to Grade 3
Use new SDE reading assessments to identify K-3 students who are reading at a level below proficient, beginning with the 2014-15 school year.
Length of School Year
Provide 180 days and 900 hours of school sessions per year. No rescheduled sessions on Saturday or Sunday.
Access to Student Records
● Provide parents or the courts access to students' records.
● Mail school notices to parent or guardian with whom the student does not primarily reside when they mail them to the other parent or guardian.
Prohibition of Discrimination
● Open schools to all five-year-olds, without discrimination.
● Open schools to all children and give them an equal opportunity to participate in school activities, programs, and courses of study without discrimination on account of gender identity or expression.
Educational Opportunity for Military Children
Follow uniform standards to facilitate placement, enrollment, graduation, data collection, and other decisions involving children in grades K-12 when they move to other states because their parents are deployed on active duty in the U.S. Armed Services.
Provide an opportunity for silent meditation at the beginning of each day for students and teachers who want it.
Prescribed Courses of Study
● Provide the prescribed courses of study.
● Attest that the instruction is planned, ongoing, and systematic. (The courses of study include arts, career education, consumer education, health and safety, language arts, mathematics, physical education, science, social studies, and, in secondary school, world language and vocational education.)
● Exempt deaf or hearing-impaired students from any world language requirement if parent requests it in writing.
● Include American Sign Language as a world language when offering instructional programs.
Exempt students from participation in family life education upon written notice from parents.
Exempt students from participation in or observation of dissection of any animal as part of classroom instruction upon written notice from parents.
Establishment of Graduation Date
Hold graduation ceremonies no earlier than 185th day of originally adopted school calendar (with exceptions).
English Language as Medium of Instruction
Hold all classes in English, except for bilingual and English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) programs.
Bilingual Education Programs
● Annually ascertain the dominant language of district children and provide bilingual education if there are 20 or more children with a single dominant language other than English.
● Discontinue bilingual education for students who fail to meet the state's English mastery standard after 30 months in a bilingual education program.
● Provide a program on democracy that allows students to learn about the branches of government in a participatory manner as part of their third, fourth, or fifth grade curriculum.
Curriculum and Instruction Materials and Exemptions
Provide a program of U.S. history and the duties of citizenship.
Select textbooks that reflect the achievements of individuals of both sexes, all ethnic backgrounds, and all races.
Exempt students from any firearm safety program the district offers, upon a parent's request, and provide them with an opportunity for study.
● Provide alcohol, nicotine, and drug education.
● Annually attest to the SBE that all students receive such education.
● Provide AIDS education.
● Adopt a policy to exempt students from AIDS education upon parental request.
Days Proclaimed by the Governor
Observe Martin Luther King Day, Pan American Day, and other special days on the day designated or on the last school day before the holiday.
Towns with No High School
Designate a high school in another district if the district does not have its own high school, and pay tuition for students to attend that high school.
Give at least one year's notice of discontinuance of high school service to nonresidents.
Regional Agricultural Science and Technology Education Centers
If school does not offer vocational-agriculture (vo-ag) training, designate a school that students may attend. Pay tuition and reasonable and necessary costs of transportation to the vo-ag training.
● If a school district does not maintain a vo-ag center, allow its students to enroll in one or more other districts' center in numbers that are at least equal to (1) the number specified in any written agreement it has with a vo-ag center or (2) if there is no written agreement, the average number of its students enrolled in the center during the three previous school years.
● If a district does not maintain a center, also provide enrollment opportunities for 9th graders in each center it designates that are at least equal to (1) the number of 9th graders specified in its written agreement with each center or (2) the average number of 9th graders that enrolled in each designated center or centers over the preceding three years.
● If a district provided opportunities for its students to enroll in more than one center in the school year starting July 1, 2007, continue to do so in the numbers required by law.
Regional Educational Service Centers (RESCs)
, as amended by PA 13-247, §§ 322 & 324
● Adopt the uniform school calendar developed by their respective RESCs beginning in the 2015-16 school year.
● Pay agreed-upon amount, including extra for special education, to any local charter school in the district that a student from the district attends.
● Provide transportation for district students to any charter school located in district.
● Hold planning and placement team (PPT) meeting for charter school student who lives in district and requires special education, and pay the extra cost for special education services to charter school.
● Provide adult education, including U.S. citizenship instruction, English for limited English-speaking adults, and elementary and secondary completion programs.
● Only provide an adult education diploma upon completion of 20 credits in specified subjects.
● Award specified adult education credits for experiential learning, successfully completed courses at state-accredited schools or colleges, successfully passing tests, and independent study.
Provide rooms and other facilities for adult education classes.
Charge no fees for adult education courses the law requires.
Special Education Programs and Services
● Follow SDE regulations on the use of physical restraints and seclusion on students receiving or awaiting eligibility determinations for special education services in public schools.
● Tell pupils, parents, guardians, and others standing in the place of parents about (1) the laws and regulations governing the use of physical restraints and seclusion and (2) related student and parental rights at the first PPT meeting involving the student's individualized educational program (IEP).
● Report to SDE on use of restraint and seclusion.
● Identify children who require special education, provide special education, notify parents when children may require special education, maintain records, report annually on the progress of special education children in private institutions, and submit the report to the SBE upon request.
● Provide transportation to special education students to and from the child's residence, unless the district makes another arrangement with the student's parents.
● Be financially responsible for resident students receiving special education outside the district.
● Be financially responsible for cost of special education for one calendar year for any child placed in the district by a state agency whose home district cannot be identified.
● Do not require a student to get a prescription drug before he may go to school, be evaluated to determine special education eligibility, or receive special education.
● If providing special education, offer to meet with student's parents, upon their request, after student has been assessed for possible placement in special education but before the PPT meeting.
● Provide parents with copies of the assessment and evaluation results used to determine special education eligibility at least 3 school days before the referral PPT meeting.
● Provide parents with any SDE information and resources relating to IEP as soon as a student is identified as eligible for special ed.
Comply with special education hearing procedures.
Comply with special education audit requirements.
Employ the requisite number of certified and licensed staff to implement each child's IEP.
Include an administrator, not necessarily the principal, in each PPT meeting.
Follow statutory procedures in identifying whether children require special education.
Provide SDE with information on race, ethnicity, and disability category of children requiring special education.
Provide applied behavioral services by properly licensed personnel to children with autism spectrum disorder whose IEP or Section 504 plan requires it.
If an IEP is for a child identified as deaf or hearing impaired, include a language and communication plan developed by the child's PPT.
Annually report to SDE upon being informed that the district disproportionately and inappropriately identified students who are (1) racial minorities or (2) English Language Learners as needing special education due to a reading deficiency.
Give teachers access to resources within the district to assist any student who is not eligible for special education but who has a communicative, motor skills, or physical problem.
Technical High Schools
Pay tuition and transportation costs for students to attend a school board-designated technical high school and transportation costs for students attending a technical high school.
● Employ state-certified teachers, supervisors, administrators, special service staff members, and school superintendents.
● Employ substitutes only if they have bachelor's degrees, unless SDE waives the requirement.
● Superintendent or designee must observe, guide, and evaluate the performance of teachers with initial educator certificates.
● Make 18 hours of continuing education available to certified employees and attest to SDE that these professional development activities meet statutory standard.
● Fully consider priorities relating to student outcomes as determined by SBE when establishing professional development activities for certified employees.
● Report to the education commissioner when dismissing an employee who holds an SBE credential for moral misconduct under the teacher employment law.
Upon receiving notice from SDE, notify in writing teachers whose provisional certificates will expire in next 12 months.
● Develop a three-year plan for school board participation in the Teacher Evaluation and Mentoring (TEAM) program that meets statutory requirements.
● Form, with teachers' union representatives, a local or regional coordinating committee or committees to guide board activities under the plan.
● Develop an annual budget based on the plan and submit it to SDE to receive state assistance for TEAM Program activities.
● Recruit mentors from within and outside the district and assign them to work with the district's beginning teachers.
● Ensure coverage by substitute teachers to allow mentors and beginning teachers to participate in the TEAM Program.
● Communicate regularly with beginning teachers about training opportunities, workshops, and support groups.
● Coordinate the TEAM Program with the district's teacher evaluation and supervision program, but keep the two separate.
● Through the coordinating committee, verify that beginning teachers have completed the TEAM Program requirements for a provisional certificate and attest to that fact and that the teacher is eligible for the provisional certificate.
● Ensure that schools (1) administer the state's online needs assessment to establish beginning teachers' goals and priorities for their individualized mentoring plans; (2) review and approve teachers' plans; (3) organize mentoring opportunities by grade, department, or specialty; (4) make time available for teachers to achieve their mentoring plan goals; (5) coordinate mentors' and teachers' activities and schedules to ensure proper implementation of the district plan; and (6) submit an annual report on mentor and teacher activities to the district's coordinating committee for review and approval.
● Develop three-year plans that incorporate SDE's goals and instructional priorities along with local community and student needs.
● Once a teacher completes the learning modules and successfully passes the district coordinating committee's final review, submit to SBE the names of the teachers eligible for provisional certificates.
● Do not consider a teacher's completion of the TEAM Program as a factor in any decision to continue the teacher's employment.
Reading Instruction Teacher Survey
Require K-3 teachers to take a survey on reading instruction developed by SDE based on a reading instruction exam approved by SBE or a comparable exam, beginning July 1, 2014 and biennially thereafter.
Make available, at no cost, at least 18 hours of individual and small group professional development each school year for certified employees.
● Follow specified criteria and procedures for employing and terminating teachers.
● Notify nontenured teachers by May 1 if their contracts will not be renewed for the following year.
Provide copies of personnel records to certified employees upon request.
● Adopt and implement a teacher evaluation and support program through mutual agreement between the board of education and the local professional development and evaluation committee, beginning September 1, 2013.
● If the board and the committee cannot agree, then the board must adopt a program it has developed using guidelines adopted by SBE.
● Evaluate teachers annually, consistent with the board-adopted evaluation and support program.
Disclosure of Teacher Records
Obtain consent before releasing teachers' performance records.
Provide the DCF commissioner, upon her request and for the purpose of investigating suspected child abuse or neglect by a teacher the board employs, any records the board maintains or keeps on file, regardless of another law (CGS § 10-151c) that provides that records kept by school boards generally are not subject to disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act.
Training for Teacher Evaluation
● Provide training for all evaluators and orientation to all teachers regarding the evaluation and support program upon implementation of the new program.
● Beginning with the 2014-15 school year, conduct evaluator training and teacher evaluation orientation at least biennially, conduct training for all new evaluators before they perform evaluations, and provide orientation to all new teachers before they are evaluated.
Teacher Employment Discrimination
Do not discriminate on the basis of sex, marital status, or on account of gender identify and expression in the employment or compensation of teachers.
Labor Practices and Dispute Resolution
● Negotiate with the teachers' union and meet with the town fiscal authority within 30 days of starting negotiations.
● Permit finance board or board of selectmen member to be present during negotiations.
Do not engage in prohibited labor practices regarding collective bargaining.
Participate in mediation and, if negotiations end in impasse, binding arbitration.
Do not require that teachers live in the district.
Allow certified employees at least 15 sick days each year and allow them to accumulate at least 150 days.
Guarantee teachers a duty-free lunch, scheduled for a single period of consecutive minutes.
Impose no penalty on military reservists for a military leave.
Reemploy professional employees after military service.
Appoint a superintendent to supervise the schools and serve as school board CEO.
● Notify teachers about to be employed of teacher retirement provisions affecting them and make proper deductions and forward them to state treasurer.
● Transmit reports and other supporting information that the Teachers' Retirement Board (TRB) requires when transmitting monthly teacher retirement contributions.
Allow retired teachers from the district who are not participating in Medicare Part A and B to continue participation in any group health insurance plan the district maintains for active teachers and charge retirees a premium no greater than that charged to active teachers for the same coverage.
● Before reemploying a retired teacher, certify to TRB that no other qualified candidate is available.
● Make temporarily reemployed retirees eligible for active teachers' health plan.
● Send notice of rehired retirees to TRB at the beginning and end of assignment.
Refusal of Special Education Services
If providing special education services to a student whose parents choose to send him/her to private school, the services must comply with the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).
● Provide school accommodations, including transportation, for all district students; notify the alleged responsible school board of any child to whom it denies accommodations; and follow hearing procedures for denial.
● Provide school accommodations to students seeking readmission after dropping out of school no later than three days after they ask for it, as long as they seek readmission no later than 10 days after terminating enrollment.
● Immediately enroll or re-enroll a student transferring from either of the unified school districts (USDs) run by the departments of Correction and Children and Families (USD #1 and USD #2, respectively).
● Re-enroll such a student in his or her former school if the student went to school in the district before attending school in a USD and the former school has appropriate grades for the student.
Certificate of Age
Furnish employers with certificates of age for minors in certain occupations.
● Adopt and implement specific truancy policies for children in grades K-8 and report the number of habitual truants to SDE annually.
● Notify the parent of a child's absence by mail as well as by phone.
● In the mailed notice, warn that two unexcused absences in a month or five in a year could lead the school superintendent to file a family with service needs (FWSN) complaint.
● File a FWSN complaint within 15 days after a parent fails to attend the meeting with school officials or otherwise fails to cooperate in addressing his or her child's school absences.
School Health and Sanitation
Keep schools in a clean and sanitary condition.
Require students to be protected by certain immunizations.
Appoint a school medical advisor if the town's population is 10,000 or more and prescribe the functions and duties to carry out statutory requirements.
● Require students to have health assessments before school enrollment, in grade six or seven, and in grade nine or 10.
● Report each asthma diagnosis to the local health department and the Department of Public Health regardless of whether it is recorded on student health assessment forms.
Provide free health assessments for low-income students.
● Require all students in jurisdiction to report whether they have health insurance.
● Provide information on state-sponsored health insurance programs for children, and application assistance, to each uninsured student's parent or guardian.
Honor written notice from health practitioners about students' physical restrictions.
● Keep student medical records confidential.
● Designate a representative to receive reports on heath assessments and immunizations from medical providers.
Appoint one or more school nurses per district.
● Adopt written policies and procedures, approved by the school medical officer, if school board allows a school nurse or other authorized personnel to give students medicine or allows a student to self-administer medicine.
● Keep records of, and store, controlled substances as required by the public health commissioner.
● School nurse or principal must select a qualified school employee to, under certain conditions, give a glucagon injection to a student with diabetes who may require prompt treatment to protect him or her from serious harm or death. Provide general supervision to the qualified employee through the school nurse.
Adopt policies prohibiting school personnel, with certain exceptions, from recommending psychotropic drugs for any child.
● Implement a plan, based on state guidelines, for managing students with life-threatening allergies enrolled in their schools.
● Make plans for managing students with life-threatening food allergies publicly available on the Internet or otherwise.
● Implement SDE and DPH plan for managing students with glycogen storage disease enrolled in schools in their jurisdictions.
● Make these plans available on the board's or each school's website, or by some other means if no website exists.
● Provide notice about the plan to parents/guardians, along with written statements about pesticide applications that must be provided by law.
● Have superintendents attest annually to SDE that their districts are implementing the plans.
● If funding is available, have at each school (1) an automatic external defibrillator (AED) and (2) school staff trained in its use and in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
● Develop emergency action response plans for the appropriate use of school personnel to respond to individuals experiencing sudden cardiac arrest or similar life-threatening emergencies.
Provide annual vision screenings to pupils in grades one through six and nine; audiometric screenings in grades K through three, five, and eight; and postural screenings in grades five and eight.
Provide the same health services for private school students as for public school students.
Do not purchase art materials unless they have requisite warning labels.
PA 13-178, § 1
● Collaborate with emergency mobile psychiatric service providers, when called upon, to (1) improve coordination and communication to promptly identify/refer children with mental, emotional, or behavioral health issues to the appropriate treatment program and (2) plan for any follow-up with the child and family.
● Train any employed school resource officers, if federal funds are available, in nationally recognized best practices to prevent students with mental health issues from being victimized or disproportionately referred to the juvenile justice system because of their mental health issues.
Duties of Local and Regional Boards of Education
Hold board meetings at least once every six months, elect officers, and record minutes for public inspection.
PA 13-3, § 87
● Establish a school security and safety committee at each school in the district.
● Develop a school security and safety plan for each school in the district based upon Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (DESPP) standards beginning in the 2014-15 school year.
● Develop, review, update, and submit school security and safety plans to DESPP
● Require pools used for public school gym class, interscholastic activities, or extracurricular activities to follow new safety standards, beginning in the 2013-14 school year.
● Require a qualified person to monitor the pool in addition to the one conducting the activity, beginning in the 2013-14 school year (only a monitor required for extracurricular activities beginning 2014-15)
● Adopt a pool safety plan by July 1, 2014 if the board offers student aquatic activities at a school pool
Require that when boards independently hire armed security for a school, they must hire active or retired police officers.
● Maintain good public schools.
● Implement the educational interests of the state.
● Give all children in the district as nearly equal advantages as practical.
● Provide adequate instructional materials, equipment, staffing, facilities, and technology.
● Allocate resources equitably among schools.
● Maintain facilities properly.
● Provide a safe school setting.
● Make a continuing study of need for school facilities and of a long-term school building program and make recommendations to the town based on the study.
● Adopt and implement an indoor air quality program that provides for ongoing maintenance and facility reviews as necessary.
● Annually report to the education commissioner on the condition of facilities and actions taken to implement the long-term facility plan and indoor air quality program.
● Advise the commissioner on the relationship between individual school building projects for which the town is seeking state assistance and the long-term school building program.
● Care for and maintain school facilities and property.
● Insure school buildings and property and carry minimum insurance equal to 80% of their replacement cost.
● Determine the number, age, and qualifications of the pupils admitted to each school.
● Develop and implement a written minority staff recruitment policy.
● Employ and dismiss teachers.
● Designate the schools each child in the district attends.
● Provide the opportunity for children between the ages of five and 18, who have not graduated from high school, to attend school and provide reasonable and desirable school transportation for such students.
● Limit student transportation contracts to no more than five years.
● Prepare a statement of district educational goals consistent with statewide goals.
● Develop student objectives that relate to the goals and identify specific expectations for student knowledge, skills, and competence.
● Annually attest to the commissioner that instruction is based on the district's educational goals.
● Submit an annual strategic school profile report to the commissioner that includes information on parental involvement.
● Every five years, provide a uniform inspection and evaluation program of the indoor air quality within schools and make the results public.
● Establish a school district curriculum committee to recommend, develop, review, and approve all curricula in the district.
● Include in the district's strategic school profile the number of students enrolled in board of education or RESC-operated adult high school credit programs.
● Include truancy measures in the strategic school profile reports.
● Include, in the narrative part of the strategic school profile, a description of board's actions to reduce truancy.
● Include implementation of the green cleaning program (see below) in each school in biennial report to SDE on condition of school facilities.
● Annually establish student objectives for each school year that identify specific expectations for students' skills, knowledge, and competence.
● Maintain in a central location records of investigations of allegations of child abuse or neglect against a school employee.
In-service Training and Professional Development
● Provide in-service training program for teachers and other professional staff.
● Develop and implement a professional development plan directly related to the district's goals that provides for ongoing and systematic assessment and improvement of teacher evaluation and professional development.
● Establish a professional development and evaluation committee to, among other things, (1) participate in developing and possibly adopting a teacher evaluation and support program for the district and (2) develop, evaluate, and annually update the district's professional development plan.
● In-service training for certified employees must include information on preventing teen dating violence and domestic violence.
● Include requirements for mandated child abuse and neglect reporters in in-service training.
● Provide information on teacher evaluation and support program as part of regular in-service training for certified teachers, administrators, and pupil personnel.
● Offer information on implementing student IEPs as part of in-service training for certified personnel.
● Provide full access for recruiting by regional technical, agriculture science and technology, charter, and interdistrict magnet schools and interdistrict student attendance programs.
● Inform middle and high school parents that tech agriculture sicence programs are available; post info about options on board website.
Establish a written policy on weighted grading for honors and advanced placement classes.
Transfer of Student Records
● When a student moves into a district, notify the student's old district in writing, within two business days. Old district must send student records to new district within 10 business days. If student's parents have not authorized the records transfer, old district must send them a written notice when it transfers the records.
● Credit students for all instruction received from USD #1 (Dept. of Corrections) or # 2 (Department of Children and Families) within 30 days of receiving records from USD #1 or #2.
Student Health Equipment
Do not deny a student access to school transportation service solely because the student must carry a cartridge injector while traveling in a school transportation vehicle.
Do not prohibit blood glucose self-testing by children who have a written medical order to do so.
Records for Students in Detention Facilities
● If a student being held at the Connecticut Juvenile Training School or in a community detention facility is enrolled in the school district, provide the student's educational records to the facility on request and without the parent's written permission.
● If the records are supplied without parental permission, notify the parent or guardian at the time of releasing the records.
Board of Education Rulemaking
● Make rules for the public schools and for the control of school library media centers and approve selection of books and other media for them.
● Approve plans for public school buildings.
● Develop and implement policies about homework, attendance, promotion, retention, drug use or possession, youth suicide prevention and attempts, and encouraging parental involvement.
● Policies to encourage parent-teacher cooperation must require school districts to hold two flexible parent-teacher conferences per year.
High School Graduation Requirements
● Require students to complete the state graduation requirements before graduating from high school.
● Starting with 7th graders in the 2015-16 school year, provide adequate support and remedial service to enable them to meet higher high school graduation requirements taking effect for the classes of 2020 and after.
● For students unable to meet the requirements in the regular way, provide an alternative way to meet them.
● Create an annual student success plan for each student, starting in grade six. The plans must include the student's career and academic choices in 6th through 12th grades.
● Allow students to earn credits toward high school graduation by completing the academic advancement program.
Provide the same directory information to military as to other recruiters and establish a written, uniform policy for the treatment of all recruiters.
Record and annually report school transportation complaints to the motor vehicles commissioner and report accidents to the commissioner within 10 days.
Criminal Records Checks of Personnel
● Require job applicants, including student teachers, to undergo a criminal record check, arrange for fingerprinting, and forward prints to the State Police.
● Notify SBE if school board receives notice that a student teacher has been convicted of a crime.
● Require applicants for jobs in public schools that require state certificate or other state credential to undergo a check against the Department of Children and Families (DCF) child abuse registry.
Instructional Time and Facility Usage Assessment
Conduct an instructional time and facility usage assessment to maximize student learning and community use of facilities.
Lunch and Recess
● Offer full-day students a daily lunch period lasting at least 20 minutes.
● Include a total of 20 minutes of physical exercise in each regular school day for elementary school students (except special education students or students on Individualized Education Programs with a different exercise schedule).
§§ 2 & 3
● Adopt a policy by October 1, 2013 to address any employee who prevents an elementary school student from participating in the required exercise period as discipline.
● Adopt a policy by October 1, 2013 to address any employee who requires any K-12 student to engage in physical activity as discipline during the regular school day.
Make nutritious low-fat food available in schools at all times when food is available for students to buy.
Sell only certain healthy beverages to students in schools.
Advanced Placement Courses
Provide high school-level courses, including those for which advance placement exams are available, that (1) offer college- or university-level instruction for which students may earn college credit and (2) are approved by SBE.
Child Abuse and Neglect
● Permit and give priority to any child abuse or neglect investigation that DCF or local law enforcement is conducting.
● Conduct an investigation and take disciplinary action in accordance with the law after receiving notice from the DCF commissioner or the law enforcement agency that the investigation will not interfere with either of the other investigations.
Common Core Standards
● Local and regional boards of education must develop a plan with the Board of Regents and the UConn Board of Trustees to align Connecticut's common core state standards with college-level programs at Connecticut public higher education institutions.
● Alignment must occur within one year of Connecticut's implementation of the common core.
Appropriations and Budget
● Estimate education costs for the ensuing year and forward to district's board of finance.
● Provide written explanations of any rejections of spending recommendations made by the town's appropriating authority regarding consolidation of non-educational services and cost savings.
● Provide a written explanation for every emergency appropriation transfer between line items in the education budget by board-designated personnel to the town's legislative body or board of selectmen, and also announce it at the board's next regularly scheduled meeting.
● Do not overspend total budget without town's approval of request for additional funds.
PA 13-247, § 192
● Annually post on board's website, beginning FY 14, aggregate spending on salaries, employee benefits, instructional supplies and equipment, educational media supplies, regular and special education tuition, purchased services, and all other expenditure items.
Before hiring any new employee, make a documented good-faith effort to contact previous employers concerning the person's fitness for the job.
● Prohibit bullying and cyberbullying both in and outside of school and develop plans to address bullying and cyberbullying in and outside of school.
● Plans must (1) prohibit retaliation or discrimination against those who report or help investigate bullying, (2) address what the school will do to protect the targeted student from further bullying, and (3) require a school principal or his or her designee to notify the police when they suspect that an act of bullying constitutes a crime.
● Approve school climate plans by January 1, 2012 and submit them to SDE.
● Within 30 calendar days after adopting their plans, to post them on the board's and each school's website.
● Provide all school employees with a written or electronic copy of the plan at the start of each school year.
● Enable students to report bullying to any school employee and notify students' parents and guardians, as well as the students themselves, every year of the process by which students may make such reports.
● Investigate reports of bullying within statutory deadlines.
● Establish procedures for schools to document and maintain records of bullying investigations.
● Offer in-service training to certified employees and training to all other employees on identifying and responding to bullying and preventing and responding to youth suicide.
● Every two years, require each school to assess its school climate using assessment instruments, including surveys, approved and disseminated by SDE in collaboration with the Connecticut Association of Schools.
● Collect and report the school assessments to SDE.
● Appoint, from existing staff, a safe school climate coordinator for the district to carry out duties specified in statute.
● Appoint the principal of each school district to be the safe school climate specialist to investigate reports of bullying, among other things.
● Establish or designate at least one new or existing committee to be responsible for fostering a safe school climate and addressing school bullying.
● If employing athletic coaches, require the athletic director or immediate supervisor of the coach to evaluate the coach annually and provide coach a copy of the evaluation.
● If the board decides to terminate the contract of a coach who has served in the same position for three or more athletic seasons, inform the coach of the reasons within 90 days after the end of the sport season covered by the contract.
PA 13-41, §
● On or after October 1, 2013, hire only school athletic directors who hold an SBE-issued coaching permit, and either (1) a state educator's certificate or (2) a national athletic administrators association-issued certificate.
● On or after October 1, 2013, hire only school district athletic directors who hold an SBE-issued coaching permit, and either (1) a state educator's certificate with intermediate administration or supervision endorsement or (2) a master's certificate from a national athletic administrators association
● Do not hire an athletic director “grandfathered” in at another district, unless the person can meet the statutory requirements.
Safe School Climate
Require safe school climate committees to collect, evaluate, and report information about disturbing or threatening student behavior as provided in the school's security and safety plan.
PA 13-3, § 90
Require all district safe school climate coordinators to successfully complete the mental health first aid training program offered by the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services in 2014-15, or 2015-16 if newly appointed.
Promotion and Graduation Policies
● Review and revise promotion and graduation policies to ensure they foster achievement and reduce social promotion.
● Specify basic skills needed for graduation, including a process for assessing competency.
● Develop a course of study for those who have not passed the assessments.
● If school district had a dropout rate of 8% or greater in the previous school year, establish an online credit recovery program for students identified as being in danger of failing to graduate.
● Designate, from among existing staff, an online learning coordinator to administer and coordinate the online credit recovery program.
Duties of Board of Education Secretary
● Keep a record of all board proceedings and submit an annual report of its activities to the town.
● Report returns and statistics of schools, as the education commissioner requests.
Fix salaries and compensation for school attendance officers if the town does not do so.
Reports to Commissioner of Education
● Annually report the name, place of employment, and salary of the district's certified staff to the education commissioner.
● Report the name and address of a new superintendent within seven days of the position being accepted.
Annually submit data to SBE to determine the total number of minority students and teachers, and students eligible for free and reduced-price lunches in the district, in each school, and in each grade.
Prepare and submit a racial imbalance plan to SBE, if notified of racial imbalance.
Report biennially to education commissioner on programs and activities undertaken to reduce racial, ethnic, and economic isolation in schools.
Annually report on receipts, expenditures, and statistics to the education commissioner.
Supplies and Materials
Provide free texts, supplies, and equipment to students. If loaning assistive devices to public school students, loans must be free.
Change textbooks only after a two-thirds vote of all members of the board.
Provide a flag for each classroom and the grounds of each school and see that it is properly displayed. Develop a policy to ensure that time is available each day in all schools to recite the Pledge of Allegiance.
Fire and Crisis Response Drills
● Hold a fire drill in the schools at least once a month.
● Substitute crisis response drills for fire drills once every three months.
● Conduct one of the fire drills no later than 30 days after the first day of each school year.
● Develop the crisis response drill format in consultation with the appropriate local law enforcement agency.
● Employ only certified pesticide applicators for nonemergency pesticide applications in school or on school grounds. Most schools are barred from using pesticides during school hours or planned activities at the school.
● Do not apply the pesticides at all starting July 1, 2010, except in emergencies, at preschools and elementary schools with students through grade eight.
If schools have no integrated pest management (IPM) plan, (1) provide parents and school staff with written statement of pest management policy at beginning of school year, (2) establish registry of those desiring 24 hours advance notice of pesticide use, (3) provide the notice by mail, and (4) keep pesticide application records for five years.
If schools have IPM plans, (1) provide staff written guidelines on how plan is to be implemented and (2) provide parents with written plan summary. Allow parents and staff to register for advance notice of application. Maintain application records for five years.
Building Maintenance and Cleaning
Ensure heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems are (1) maintained in accordance with national standards and (2) except for scheduled maintenance or emergency repairs, operated continuously while the school is occupied unless there is demonstrated adequate air exchange without operation. Keep HVAC maintenance records for at least five years.
● Implement a green cleaning program to clean and maintain schools.
● Provide for procurement and proper use of environmentally preferable cleaning products in schools.
● Provide an annual written statement notifying staff and, if they request it, parents or guardians of enrolled students of the green cleaning program.
● Publish notice of the program on the board of education's and each school's website or, if there is no website, publicize it in another way.
● Notify parents or guardians of transfer students and newly hired staff of the program.
Do not employ board members in the school system.
Suspension of Pupils
● Suspend students from school only after an informal hearing.
● Give suspended student an opportunity to make up schoolwork and exams.
● Include information about the suspension on the student's permanent record.
● Erase the suspension from the record if student graduates from high school.
● Make student suspensions in-school suspensions unless the school administration determines, at the required informal suspension hearing, that the student (1) poses a danger to persons or property or (2) is so disruptive of the educational process that an out-of-school suspension is warranted.
● Before determining that an out-of-school suspension is appropriate, try to address the problem through means other than an out-of-school suspension or expulsion, including through “positive behavioral support” strategies.
Expulsion of Pupils
● Expel a student only after a hearing, and provide an alternative educational opportunity, except in specified cases.
● Include expulsion on student's educational record.
● Erase the expulsion from the record if the student graduates, unless it was for possession of a firearm or deadly weapon.
● Complete any expulsion hearing even if student withdraws from school during it and include information on the student's record.
● Before conducting an expulsion hearing for a special education student, convene a PPT meeting to determine if the misconduct was caused by the student's disability. If so, PPT must reevaluate student's placement and IEP to address the misconduct and ensure safety of other children and school staff.
● Submit information to the education commissioner on weapons-related expulsions as required by federal law.
● Do not prevent the return of, or expel for additional time for the same offense, a student who committed an expellable offense and who seeks to return to a district after having been in a residential placement. If the district did not expel the student for the offense, it must allow him or her to re-enroll in school after the detention period ends and cannot expel him or her for any additional time for that offense.
● Do not require an expelled student to withdraw from school in order to attend adult education classes as an alternative education opportunity.
Notice of Disciplinary Policies
Notify students, parents, and guardians annually of student conduct policies. Adopt effective method of notifying parents and guardians of students who are suspended or expelled within 24 hours of the time the student is excluded from school.
Place a student on in-school suspension only after an informal hearing. Do not place a student on in-school suspension more than 15 times or a total of 50 days during one school year.
Assault and Arrest Reports
Report student assault of teachers or other school employee to police. Do not interfere with teacher's or other employee's right to file a report with police when a student threatens or commits physical violence against an employee.
Maintain reports of arrested students in a secure place.
Students Placed on Probation by the Courts
● Allow a student placed on probation by a court to return to school on conditions specified by the court.
● Provide timely information at the court's request on (1) a student's school attendance, adjustment, and behavior and (2) any recommendations for disposition and sentencing.
Student Possession of Telecommunication Devices
Allow students to possess or use remote activated paging devices in school only with written permission from school principal.
Indemnify teachers, board members, employees, and certain volunteers, except for teacher mentors or assessors.
Indemnify board members and staff from expenses caused by an assault on them while on duty.
Petition for Hearing by Board of Education
Hold a public hearing on any question specified in a petition that is signed by 1% or 50 electors, whichever is greater, within three weeks of the board's receiving the petition.
National Assessment of Educational Progress
Participate in the National Assessment of Educational Progress or any other national or international measure of student progress, if designated by the education commissioner.
Publicly disclose the results of accreditation reports within 45 days, and make them available for inspection upon request.
Enumeration of School Age Children
Annually determine the age and number of children of compulsory school age. If any child of school age is not in school, make a reasonable effort to find out why. If the child is working, make a reasonable effort to find out the name and address of the employer.
File an annual report with commissioner on the number of school-age children.
School Privileges for Children in Certain Placements
● Be financially responsible for the education costs of district children placed in other districts by state agencies, up to 100% of its average per pupil cost.
● Provide free schooling to children living in temporary shelters.
● If a juvenile detention facility operated by, or under contract with, the Judicial Department is located in the school district, be responsible for providing, and paying part of the cost of, regular and special education and related services for students held in the facility.
Data to be Transmitted
Report staff data to Teachers' Retirement Board.
Minimum Budget Requirement
With exceptions, to receive an Education Cost Sharing (ECS) grant for FY 14, budget the same amount for education as in FY 13 plus any ECS aid increase received for FY 14. Similarly, to receive an ECS grant for FY 15, budget the same amount for education as in FY 14 plus any ECS aid increase received for FY 15.
Interdistrict Magnet Schools
● If not participating in an interdistrict magnet school, for any of its students who enrolls directly in an interdistrict magnet school, pay the per-student tuition, if any, that the magnet school charges to participating districts.
● If participating, provide annual opportunities for students to attend the school in a number at least equal to (1) the number specified in any written agreement with the school's operator or (2) the average number of students that the participating district enrolled in the magnet school during the previous three school years.
● If operating a magnet school, file with the education commissioner a financial audit for each magnet school operated and an aggregate financial audit for all magnet schools operated.
Transportation for Pupils in Nonproft Private Schools
Provide the same transportation services for students enrolled in nonpublic schools in the district as for public school students, if a majority of the nonpublic school's students are Connecticut residents.
Public School Building Projects
Comply with School Safety Infrastructure Council's school safety infrastructure standards when submitting state grant applications for school building projects beginning July 1, 2014.
Protection of Children from Abuse
● School superintendents are mandated child abuse and neglect reporters.
● Require applicants for positions in public schools to be checked against the DCF child abuse and neglect register.
● Require new and existing school employees who are mandated reporters to receive mandated reporter training and periodic refresher courses.
● Distribute written mandated reporter policy to school employees annually.
● Document that all employees have received the policy and completed the required training.
Fire Safety Code
Install carbon monoxide detection and warning equipment complying with the Fire Safety Code in public schools issued a building permit for new occupancy on or after January 1, 2012.
Family and Medical Leave Benefits
Provide employees who (1) are parties to a same-sex marriage and (2) have worked for the political subdivision for at least 12 months and 1,250 hours during the past 12 months, with the same Family and Medical Leave Act benefits that federal law provides to parties to a marriage.