HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.B. NO.

159

TWENTY-SIXTH LEGISLATURE, 2011

H.D. 1

STATE OF HAWAII

S.D. 1

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

RELATING TO CHARTER SCHOOLS.

 

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 


SECTION 1. Section 302B-3, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by amending subsection (i) to read as follows:

"(i) The powers and duties of the panel shall be to:

(1) Appoint and evaluate the executive director and approve staff and salary levels for the charter school administrative office;

(2) Review, approve, or deny charter applications for new charter schools in accordance with section 302B-5 for the issuance of new charters; provided that applicants that are denied a charter may appeal to the board for a final decision pursuant to section 302B-3.5;

(3) Review, approve, or deny significant amendments to detailed implementation plans to maximize the school's financial and academic success, long-term organizational viability, and accountability. Charter schools that are denied a significant amendment to their detailed implementation plan may appeal to the board for a final decision pursuant to section 302B‑3.5;

(4) Pursuant to section 302B-3.6, compile and submit prioritized lists of charter schools to the department and enter into necessary agreements with the department to authorize charter schools to use and occupy vacant public school facilities or portions of school facilities;

(5) Adopt reporting requirements for charter schools;

(6) Review annual self-evaluation reports from charter schools and take appropriate action;

(7) Adopt a clear process and rigorous organizational and educational criteria, including student achievement as a significant factor, for the authorization and reauthorization of school charters;

(8) Evaluate each school charter, for the purpose of determining reauthorization, no later than four years following the initial issue of a charter and every six years thereafter; provided that charter schools that are denied reauthorization may appeal to the board for a final decision pursuant to section 302B-3.5;

(9) Evaluate any aspect of a charter school that the panel may have concerns with and take appropriate action, which may include special monitoring, temporary withholding of an allocation for non-compliance issues, probation, or revocation; provided that charter schools that have their charter revoked may appeal to the board for a final decision pursuant to section 302B‑3.5;

(10) Periodically adopt improvements in the panel's monitoring and oversight of charter schools;

(11) Periodically adopt improvements in the office's support of charter schools and management of the charter school system;

(12) Review, modify, and approve charter schools' all means of finance budget, based upon criteria and an approval process established by the panel;

(13) Survey all charter school facilities prior to, and in preparation for, determining recommendations to allocate non-per-pupil facilities funds to charter schools with facilities needs. The survey shall include, at minimum, for each charter school facility:

(A) The current status of the facility;

(B) Facilities costs, including all rents, leases, purchases, and repair and maintenance for lands and buildings;

(C) A prioritized list of facilities needs;

(D) Any capital improvement projects underway or scheduled; and

(E) Whether the facility is a conversion or start-up charter school, and current and projected enrollment; [and]

(14) Evaluate and investigate charter schools when concerns arise that necessitate the resolution or assistance with the resolution of legal, fiscal, health, safety, and other serious issues[.]; and

(15) Ensure that local school boards are fulfilling their oversight responsibilities pursuant to section 302B‑7."

SECTION 2. Section 302B-3.5, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:

"[[]302B‑3.5[]] Appeals; charter school applications, revocations, or detailed implementation plan amendments. The board shall have the power to decide appeals from decisions of the panel to deny the approval of a charter school application, deny reauthorization of a charter school, revoke a charter school's charter, or deny the approval of an amendment to a charter school's detailed implementation plan. An appeal shall be filed with the board within twenty-one calendar days of the receipt of the notification of denial or revocation. Only a party whose charter school application has been denied, whose charter has been revoked, or whose amendment to a detailed implementation plan has been denied may initiate an appeal under this section for cause. The board shall review an appeal and issue a final decision within sixty calendar days of the filing of the appeal. The board may adopt applicable rules and procedures pursuant to chapter 91 for implementing the appeals process."

SECTION 3. Section 302B-7, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended as follows:

"302B-7 Charter school local school boards; powers and duties. (a) All local school boards, with the exception of those of conversion charter schools that are managed and operated by a nonprofit organization pursuant to section 302B‑6(e), shall be composed of, at a minimum, one representative from each of the following participant groups:

(1) Principals;

(2) Instructional staff members selected by the school instructional staff;

(3) Support staff selected by the support staff of the school;

(4) Parents of students attending the school selected by the parents of the school;

(5) Student body representatives selected by the students of the school; and

(6) The community at large.

(b) No chief executive officer, chief administrative officer, executive director, or otherwise designated head of a school may serve as the chair of the local school board.

(c) The local school board shall be the autonomous governing body of its charter school and shall have oversight over and be responsible for the financial and academic viability of the charter school, implementation of the charter, and the independent authority to determine the organization and management of the school, the curriculum, virtual education, and compliance with applicable federal and state laws. The local school board shall have the power to negotiate supplemental collective bargaining agreements with the exclusive representatives of their employees.

(d) Local school boards shall be exempt from chapter 103D, but shall develop internal policies and procedures for the procurement of goods, services, and construction, consistent with the goals of public accountability and public procurement practices. Charter schools are encouraged to use the provisions of chapter 103D wherever possible; provided that the use of one or more provisions of chapter 103D shall not constitute a waiver of the exemption from chapter 103D and shall not subject the charter school to any other provision of chapter 103D.

(e) Charter schools and their local school boards shall be exempt from the requirements of chapters 91 and 92. The local school boards shall:

(1) Make available the notices and agendas of public meetings:

(A) At a publicly accessible area in the local school board's office or the charter school administrative office so as to be available for review during regular business hours;

(B) On the local school board's or charter school's internet website not less than six calendar days prior to the public meeting, unless a waiver is granted by the executive director in the case of an emergency; and

(2) Make available the minutes from public meetings on a timely basis and a list of the names of board members and officers in:

(A) The local school board's office or the charter school administrative office so as to be available for review during regular business hours; and

(B) On the local school board's or charter school's internet website.

(f) Local school boards shall meet no less than once every quarter; provided that local school boards may meet as frequently as necessary to fulfill their oversight responsibilities.

(g) In the event a local school board is not fulfilling its oversight responsibilities pursuant to subsection (c), the panel, after working with the local school board, may require the local school board to undergo mandatory board training and may reconstitute the local school board, if necessary.

(h) Local school boards shall develop and adopt necessary policies, procedures, and by-laws consistent with this section. Local school boards shall make their policies, procedures, and by-laws available for public review.

(i) Charter schools and their local school boards shall develop internal policies and procedures including a conflict of interest policy consistent with ethical standards of conduct, pursuant to chapter 84.

[(f)] (j) The State shall afford the local school board of any charter school the same protections as the State affords the board."

SECTION 4. Section 302B-8, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by amending subsection (d) to read as follows:

"(d) The office shall withhold funds for its operational expenses, including the salaries of the executive director and staff, from the annual charter school general fund appropriation. The total amount of operational expenses withheld:

(1) Shall not exceed [two] five per cent of the annual charter school general fund allocation, which shall not include any funds carried over from previous years; provided that the office shall submit an annual report to the legislature with an accounting of its operational expenses;

(2) Shall not include the amount of funds withheld under subsections (g) and (h); and

(3) Shall be determined annually by the panel.

The salaries of the executive director and staff shall be set by the panel based upon the recommendations of charter schools within the State and in accordance with the requirements of this subsection."

SECTION 5. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 6. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2050.

 



 

Report Title:

Charter Schools; Facilities Funding Formula; Governance; Accountability; Task Forces

 

Description:

Raises the percentage of the annual charter school fund allocation that the charter school administrative office may withhold for operational expenses from two per cent to five per cent; provided that the charter school administrative office report annually to the legislature on the use of these fund. Clarifies the duties and responsibilities of the charter school review panel and local school boards. Effective 7/1/2050. (SD1)

 

 

 

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