Connecticut Seal

General Assembly

 

Substitute Bill No. 177

    February Session, 2016

 

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AN ACT ESTABLISHING A TASK FORCE TO STUDY DECLINING STUDENT ENROLLMENT.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. (Effective from passage) (a) There is established a task force to study declining student enrollment in the state. The task force shall be responsible for collecting and analyzing state-wide school-age demographic data for the purposes of considering possible changes to the laws regarding state funding for education and the geographic boundaries of school districts. The task force shall conduct a study that examines state-wide trends in the movement of the school-age population and enrollment in public schools. Such study shall include, but need not be limited to, (1) an examination of and explanation for the causes of the reduction of the school-age population in the state, (2) a determination of whether such reduction is the result of a naturally occurring cyclical pattern, and if so, the expected duration of such reduction, (3) an analysis of such reduction on future investments and expenditures in education in the state, (4) an examination of trends in the movement of the school-age population into and out of rural, suburban and urban areas, and (5) recommendations for changes in state law to allow for flexibility in the expansion or regionalization of existing school districts.

(b) The task force shall consist of the following members:

(1) Three appointed by the speaker of the House of Representatives, one of whom is a representative of the Connecticut Association of Boards of Education, one of whom is a professor at a public institution of higher education in the state with expertise in real estate and urban economic studies and one of whom is a representative of a regional council of government;

(2) Three appointed by the president pro tempore of the Senate, one of whom is a representative of the Connecticut Association of Schools, one of whom is a certified teacher in a public school and one of whom is a representative of the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities;

(3) One appointed by the majority leader of the House of Representatives, who is a representative of the Connecticut Association of Public School Superintendents;

(4) One appointed by the majority leader of the Senate, who is a person with expertise in demography;

(5) One appointed by the minority leader of the House of Representatives, who is a person with expertise in economics;

(6) One appointed by the minority leader of the Senate, who is a person with expertise in workforce development;

(7) The Commissioner of Education, or the commissioner's designee; and

(8) A representative of the Connecticut State Date Center at The University of Connecticut.

(c) Any member of the task force appointed under subdivision (1), (2), (3), (4), (5) or (6) of subsection (b) of this section may be a member of the General Assembly.

(d) All appointments to the task force shall be made not later than thirty days after the effective date of this section. Any vacancy shall be filled by the appointing authority.

(e) The speaker of the House of Representatives and the president pro tempore of the Senate shall select the chairpersons of the task force from among the members of the task force. Such chairpersons shall schedule the first meeting of the task force, which shall be held not later than sixty days after the effective date of this section.

(f) The administrative staff of the joint standing committee of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to education shall serve as administrative staff of the task force.

(g) Not later than January 1, 2017, the task force shall submit an interim report and not later than January 1, 2018, a final report on its findings and recommendations to the joint standing committee of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to education, in accordance with the provisions of section 11-4a of the general statutes. The task force shall terminate on the date it submits such report or January 1, 2018, whichever is later.

This act shall take effect as follows and shall amend the following sections:

Section 1

from passage

New section

Statement of Legislative Commissioners:

In section 1(a), former subdivision (4) was redesignated as subdivision (3) for clarity.

ED

Joint Favorable Subst.