In order to have the new 2012-13 education legislation handy, we have combined our series on the subject into one easy to reference location.  Here you will find a recap of all the legislation we summarized, along with a link to the actual Legal Alert, as well as the bill itself.

October 9, 2012 | Bulletin No. 1011597.2

Social Media Passwords | AB 1844

AB 1844 adds a new provision to the Labor Code that prohibits an employer from requiring an employee or applicant for employment to (1) disclose his or her username or password for the purpose of accessing social media, (2) access his or her personal social media in the presence of the employer, or (3) divulge any personal social media. 

October 12, 2012 | Bulletin No. 1011601.2

Pupil Fees | AB 1575

AB 1575 prohibits public school students from being required to pay a fee for participation in an educational activity.  The new law applies to all public schools, including charter and alternative schools.

Layoff Notice Period For Classified Employees | AB 1908

AB 1908 extends the period of time in which notice must be given before a classified employee may be subject to layoff, amending Education Code section 45117 and section 88017. 

Bullying By An Electronic Act | AB 1732

AB 1732 clarifies the definition of what constitutes bullying by means of an electronic act, and includes posting on a burn page or impersonating another student.

Alternatives To Suspension Or Expulsion | AB 1729

AB 1729 gives school administrators more flexibility in disciplining students, including alternatives to suspension or expulsion that are age appropriate and aimed at correcting the specific behavior.

October 21, 2012 | Bulletin No. 1011939.2

Evaluations of Principals | SB 1292

The Legislature declared in passing SB 1292 that governing Boards should “establish a uniform system of evaluations to guide principal growth and to improve principal performance while raising pupil achievement.”  SB 1292 is voluntary and districts are not bound to use these SB 1292 provisions.

Public Contracts Bidding Requirements | AB 1565

AB 1565 requires prospective bidders for construction contracts for public school districts to complete a prequalification questionnaire and financial statement for projects of one million dollars or more, from January 1, 2014 to January 1, 2019.  AB 1565 adds section 20111.6 to the Public Contract Code and the new law will apply to projects that receive funding from the Leroy F. Greene School Facilities Act of 1998 or any funds from a future school bond.  If the governing Board enters into a contract for one million dollars or more funded by the School Facilities Program or future school bonds, it must require prospective bidders to submit a standardized prequalification questionnaire and financial statement that must be verified under oath by the bidder.  The questionnaire and financial statement will not be public record and will not be open to public inspection. 

Design-Build Contracts | SB 1509

SB 1509 extends the authority for governing boards of school districts and community colleges to enter into design-build contracts until January 1, 2020. 

API Scores | SB 1458

SB 1458 alters the method by which the Academic Performance Index (API) is calculated. 

Charter Schools | SB 1290

SB 1290 requires county offices of education or school districts which approve charter schools to take into account subgroup growth when renewing a charter.  This bill is in response to the U.S. Department of Education’s opinion that California law does not comply with federal law in weighing subgroup growth as a factor in determining charter renewal.  The Charter Schools Act of 1992 (“Act”) provides the procedures for submission, review, and approval or denial of a petition to establish a charter school. 

October 24, 2012 | Bulletin No. 1008680.2

Public Retirement Systems | AB 340

The Governor signed Assembly Bill 340 (“AB 340”) on September 12, 2012, and the new law will bring changes to California’s public retirement systems.  AB 340, formerly known as the California Public Employees’ Pension Reform Act of 2013, applies to public retirement systems, with the exception of the University of California system and charter cities and counties.  However, this bill is highly technical and contains multiple ambiguities.  The purpose of this Legal Alert is to provide a general update.  Specific questions must be addressed on a case by case basis.

November 2, 2012 | Bulletin No. 1013399.2

Brown Act | SB 1003

Senate Bill 1003 (‘SB 1003”) SB 1003 amends the Brown Act and adds section 54960.2 to the Government Code, which prohibits a district attorney or any interested person from filing an action to determine the applicability of the Brown Act to past actions of a legislative body unless the following conditions are met:  (1) the district attorney or interested person submits a cease and desist letter that clearly describes past action of the legislative body and the nature of the alleged violation, and (2) within 30 days from receipt of the letter, the legislative body fails to issue “an unconditional commitment to cease, desist from, and not repeat the past action that is alleged to violate” the Brown Act. 

November 14, 2012 | Bulletin No. 1012164.2

Immunization Exemption | AB 2109

AB 2109 would require this letter or affidavit to state which immunizations, if any, have been given and which immunizations have not been given based on the basis that they are contrary to his or her beliefs.  It also requires that, starting January 1, 2014, a form must accompany the letter or affidavit which includes a signed attestation from a health care practitioner that indicates parents were provided with information regarding the benefits and risks of immunization and the health risks of communicable diseases. 

Math Standards | AB 1246

In AB 1246, the Legislature declared its intent to continue implementing the common core academic content standards by ensuring that adoption of instructional materials “are aligned to the common core academic content standards for mathematics and by providing local educational agencies flexibility in their use of instructional materials.”  AB 1246 adds section 60209 to the Education Code and also mandates that the State Board of Education adopt a revised curriculum framework for mathematics no later than November 30, 2013.  The State Board may adopt instructional materials for kindergarten and grades 1 through 8 that are aligned to the content standards adopted by the Academic Content Standards Commission for mathematics no later than March 30, 2014.

English Learners | AB 2193

AB 2193 adds sections 313.1 and 313.2 to the Education Code and adds the definition “Long-term English learner” and “English learner at risk of becoming a long-term English learner” to the Education Code.  Current law requires a school district with one or more pupils who are English learners to assess a pupil’s English language development to determine his or her level of proficiency.  The State Board of Education must establish procedures for conducting assessments and for reclassifying an English learner as English proficient.

Organ and Tissue Donation | AB 1967

AB 1967 adds section 33542 to the Education Code, which  will “ensure that the health and science curriculum frameworks adopted in the course of the next submission cycle…include the subject of organ procurement and tissue donation, as appropriate.”

Average Daily Attendance for Online Instruction | AB 644

AB 644 adds section 46300.8 to the Education Code, regarding how average daily attendance (“ADA”) is calculated for students utilizing online instruction. 

November 14, 2012 | Bulletin No. 1012489.2

Labor History Month | AB 2269

The first week of April is currently deemed to be Labor History Week and school districts are encouraged to commemorate that week with appropriate educational activities.  AB 2269 amends Education Code section 51009 to deem the entire month of May as Labor History Month. 

School Employee Reemployment | AB 2307

AB 2307 amends sections 45295 and 88117 of the Education Code to require that if a person is reemployed in a new position but fails to complete the probationary period for the new position, “he or she shall be returned to the reemployment list for the remainder of the 39-month period.”  The remaining time period must be calculated as the time remaining in the 39-month period as of the date the person was reemployed. 

November 21, 2012 | Bulletin No. 1009288.1

Protection for Religious Practices | SB 1540

Governor Brown recently signed two bills that are designed to combat religious discrimination.  The Workplace Religious Freedom Act, AB 1964, amends the Government Code and will protect workers who wear turbans, hijabs, and yarmulkes.  SB 1540, which adds a new section to the Education Code, will make way for the addition of information regarding additional ethnic groups to the school curriculum. 

December 10, 2012 | Bulletin No. 1016552.1

Foster Children: Placement | Suspension & Expulsion | Notifications | AB 1909

The primary focus of Assembly Bill 1909 (“AB 1909”) is to require that a foster child’s attorney and appropriate welfare representative (usually their social worker) be notified in situations where the foster child faces possible suspension or expulsion from school. This notification is in addition to parental or guardian notification.

December 11, 2012 | Bulletin No. 1012810.2

Gifted & Talented Program | AB 2491

AB 2491 amends section 52203 of the Education Code and requires the State Board of Education to “adopt a standard for pupil identification to ensure the identification procedures of an applicant school district provide economically disadvantaged pupils and pupils of varying cultural backgrounds with full participation in [GATE] programs.”  

Education Finance Indirect Cost Rates | AB 2435

AB 2435 adds sections 12000 and 33338 to the Education Code and requires that until January 1, 2016, the State Department of Education or any other California “agency that administers a grant or allocation of federal funds to a school district” must allow an indirect cost rate “that is not less than the indirect cost rate established by the department for each school district, unless federal law requires a lower indirect cost rate for school districts that receive federal funds.”  

Foster Children & Special Education | SB 121

SB 121 amends Education Code sections 48853, 56155.7, 56342.1, and 56366.9.  The new law will require that if a parent, guardian, or other person who holds the right to make educational decisions for a pupil in a licensed children’s institution or foster family home determines that the pupil’s best interests will be served by placing the pupil in a program other than his or her school of origin or the placement required by an individualized education program, the parent, guardian, or other person making the educational decisions for the pupil must provide the local educational agency with a written statement that he or she has made that determination regarding the pupil’s best interests. 

Educational Placement Of Foster Children | SB 1568

SB 1568  amends Education Code section 48853.5 and requires a local educational agency to allow a former foster child to continue his or her education in the school of origin through graduation if the court’s jurisdiction over the child is terminated while the child is in high school.  However, if the court’s jurisdiction is terminated before the end of the academic year for a foster child who is in kindergarten or grades one through eight, the child is only allowed to continue his or her education in the school of origin through the end of the academic year. 

Paid Leaves Of Absence To Participate In Union Activities | AB 1203

AB 1203 amends sections 45210 and 88210 to expand leave privileges to unelected classified employees.  AB 1203 provides that if a local school district or community college district public employee organization, or a statewide or national public employee organization that is affiliated with the local organization, makes a leave request to the governing board of a school district or community college district, the district must “grant a leave of absence, without loss of compensation, to a reasonable number of unelected classified employees for the purpose of enabling an employee to attend important organizational activities authorized by the public employee organization.” 

December 21, 2012 | Bulletin No. 1013321.2

Economic Impact Aid | SB 754

SB 754 adds section 54029 to the Education Code to address the conditions for receipt of economic impact aid.  Economic impact aid is provided to school districts based on the number of English learners and economically disadvantaged pupils enrolled in a school district. 

Charter Schools That Serve At-risk Pupils And Are Chartered by the LACBOE | SB 298

SB 298 allows specified charter schools to operate until June 30, 2018, provided that they have the approval of the county board of education to continue to operate after June 30, 2013.  

SB 298 also extends the requirement “that the attendance of pupils in a charter school to which this section applies shall be funded at the same rates for the same categories of pupils as community schools and community day schools in the same county” through the 2017-18 fiscal years.  The Legislature finds and declares in SB 298 “that a special law is necessary and that a general law cannot be made applicable within the meaning of Section 16 of Article IV of the California Constitution because of the unique circumstances resulting from the intensely urbanized nature of the County of Los Angeles.”

Child Abuse Reporting Requirements for Athletic Personnel | AB 1435

AB 1435 amends section 11165.7 of the Penal Code to add to the list of classes of persons that are included within the definition of a “mandated reporter,” athletic coaches, athletic administrators, or athletic directors who are employed by any public or private school that provides any combination of instruction for kindergarten, or grades 1 to 12, inclusive.

January 11, 2013 | Bulletin No. 1018468.1

Civic Center Act | SB 1404

Senate Bill 1404 amends Education Code section 38134, known as the Civic Center Act, which allows the governing board of a school district to authorize the use of school facilities or grounds under the district’s control to certain organizations or clubs.  In making these changes to the Civic Center Act, the Legislature declared that it intended to “encourage all school districts to maximize opportunities to make available and accessible public school facilities and grounds to their communities as civic centers.”

Questions

Board policies and administrative regulations should be reviewed to ensure compliance with the newest changes in the law.  School administration and staff should be updated as to any changes so that the appropriate policies are consistently followed.  KMTG attorneys are available to assist in review and revision of Board policies and regulations.

If you have questions concerning any of the new legislation, please contact the following from our office, or the attorney with whom you normally consult.

Christian M. Keiner or Meghan Covert Russell | 916.321.4500