THE SENATE

S.B. NO.

2782

TWENTY-EIGHTH LEGISLATURE, 2016

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

relating to teachers.

 

 

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

 


SECTION 1. The legislature finds that it has been a continuous struggle for the department of education to place teachers in schools having high turnover rates or determined as hard-to-fill. As the department works to find long-term solutions for teacher retention, one option to consider would be to assist current educational assistants achieve the necessary certification to be classified as teachers. A major barrier for educational assistants to overcome in achieving teacher licensure is the cost to enroll in certification programs.

The purpose of this Act is to:

(1) Establish the educational assistant certification incentive program to enable educational assistants who have been working in hard-to-fill schools to attain teacher certification and then commit to return to their communities and hard-to-fill schools as teachers for a certain period of time; and

(2) Make an appropriation for alternate teacher route contracts for teachers whose bachelor's degrees are not in the field of education.

SECTION 2. Chapter 302A, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"302A-   Educational assistant certification incentive program. (a) There is established within the department the educational assistant certification incentive program to assist educational assistants employed in the department to achieve necessary teacher certification. The educational assistant certification incentive program shall provide reimbursement for tuition for accredited teacher certification programs.

(b) To be eligible for the educational assistant certification incentive program, an educational assistant shall:

(1) Have been employed for a minimum of two years as an educational assistant in a public school determined as hard-to-fill by the department;

(2) Hold an associate's degree or higher from an accredited educational institution;

(3) Have a letter of recommendation from the principal of a public school determined as hard-to-fill by the department, under whom the educational assistant has worked;

(4) Be continuously enrolled in an accredited teacher certification program and maintain a cumulative grade point average of    ; and

(5) Have completed an accredited teacher certification program within two years of being accepted into the program.

(c) Upon completion of the accredited teacher certification program, individuals accepted into the educational assistant certification incentive program shall commit to three consecutive years of teaching at a school determined as hard-to-fill by the department. Teachers who are returning to public schools determined as hard-to-fill by the department at which they were originally employed shall receive preference in placement at those schools.

(d) The department shall adopt rules pursuant to chapter 91 to implement this section."

SECTION 3. There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $         or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2016-2017 for the educational assistant certification incentive program.

The sum appropriated shall be expended by the department of education for the purposes of this Act.

SECTION 4. There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $870,000 or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2016-2017 for alternate teacher route contracts.

The sum appropriated shall be expended by the department of education for the purposes of this Act.

SECTION 5. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 6. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2016.

 

INTRODUCED BY:

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Report Title:

Educational Assistant Certification Incentive Program; Alternate Teacher Route Contract; Appropriation

 

 

Description:

Creates an incentive program for current educational assistants in hard-to-fill schools to attain teacher licensure if they commit to teaching for three years in a hard-to-fill school. Appropriates funds for the program and alternate teacher route contracts.

 

 

 

The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.