April 12 2013

Published: 2/25/2015 4:41 PM

​​In this edition of Fast Five on Friday, you will find articles on the following:

  • Disclosure of education records in education neglect cases (Attachment)
  • Restraint and seclusion regulation guidance
  • KBE adopts resolution urging districts to be early adopters of policy to raise the compulsory school attendance age to 18
  • Clarification on adoption of board policies raising the dropout age to 18 and on related grants (Attachment)
  • AP test grant information (Attachment)
  • Highlights from the April 10 Kentucky Board of Education meeting
  • Legislative Summary from the 2013 Legislative Session (Attachment)
  • Next superintendents’ webcast to be held on April 29
  • Commissioner’s Blog on raising the dropout age
Fast Five on Friday
(Nine this Week)
Disclosure of education records in education neglect cases - KDE staff recently attended a meeting with Kentucky Supreme Court Justice Mary C. Noble, judges from around the state, and staff of the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC). One of the issues highlighted in the meeting, was the breakdown in transfer of student education records when reporting educational neglect to court designated workers (CDWs). CDWs, as you may know, are under the AOC and receive reports of truancy from local school district directors of pupil personnel (DPPs). DPPs are required to enforce the compulsory attendance laws of KRS Chapter 159, pursuant to those statutes, and had previously received advice that they could not give student education records to CDWs for truancy investigations without a court order. In KDE’s recent review of the issue and of the federal FERPA regulations and CDW authority under Kentucky law, we have found there are two avenues for CDWs to acquire education records for truancy/educational neglect investigations. A full description of this issue and the legal authorities for district disclosure of educational records to CDWs was sent to Justice Noble and the AOC and is attached to this e-mail. This information needs to be conveyed to all DPPs in Kentucky to clarify that these two authority sources exist to streamline the transfer of these records to CDWs. As well, districts and DPPs may want to consider, if they are not doing so already, informing parents that the parent/guardian’s failure to ensure the compulsory attendance of the student may result in criminal charges of “unlawful transaction with a minor” pursuant to KRS 530.070 as well as possible criminal charges and a fine under KRS 159.990. It is my hope that informing parents that the criminal charge for educational neglect, also referred to as “unlawful transaction with a minor”, will encourage those parents who would otherwise ignore the truancy law consequences to ensure their students attend school.
Finally, the feedback KDE received from some of these meetings with judges indicated there may be an opportunity for better communication between the school districts, the Court Designated Workers (CDWs) and courts in more timely enforcement of compulsory attendance laws. The judges indicated that they would like to receive the information sooner.
Early and frequent communication between school districts, CDWs and judges on this issue will help to assure that all partners who enforce compulsory attendance are clear on their desired roles and expectations. As well, any feedback school districts have regarding the courts in educational neglect cases is welcome at KDE and can be shared with our state-level counterparts for the courts. District questions regarding this issue can be sent to Cheri Meadows at cheri.meadows@education.ky.gov and any request for clarification on the legal issues can be sent to Amy Peabody at amy.peabody@education.ky.gov or David Wickersham at david.wickersham@education.ky.gov.
Restraint and seclusion regulation guidance - KDE has received many thoughtful, insightful, and helpful comments about the new physical restraint and seclusion regulation, and is working to support districts as they prepare to implement the regulation beginning on July 1, 2013. Feedback suggests that some districts may be considering restricting the use of physical restraint and seclusion to a greater extent than required by the regulation. Nothing in the regulation prohibits districts from taking such action upon the advice of local board counsel. A resource document that was issued by the United States Department of Education in May 2012 provides comprehensive and thoughtful guidance that districts may wish to consider in deciding whether to further reduce or eliminate the use of physical restraint and seclusion. It is available at the following link: 
KBE adopts resolution urging districts to be early adopters of policy to raise the compulsory school attendance age to 18 – At this week’s Kentucky Board of Education meeting, the board expressed its unanimous support for the adoption of SB 97 by the General Assembly and acknowledged the extraordinary collaborative effort that took place in getting the bill passed.
The board asked that I distribute the resolution to all superintendents and local board chairs; thus, I am including it below. Take special note that due to when the bill becomes law, local boards should not adopt such polices before the effective date of the bill or “the first moment of Tuesday, June 25, 2013,” per OAG 13-005 (See the next article for more clarification on this.) If adopted before then, then the policies are invalid.
Following is the resolution adopted by the board:
Resolution Urging Local Boards of Education to be Early Adopters of a Policy to Raise the Compulsory School Attendance Age to 18
by the Kentucky Board of Education
Whereas, In the past, students were permitted by state law to drop out of school at the age of 16, thus severely diminishing their opportunities for success in life either in postsecondary education or a career; and
Whereas, During the 2013 legislative session, outstanding collaboration occurred between Governor Steven L. Beshear, First Lady Jane Beshear, the General Assembly, Commissioner Terry Holliday, Kentucky Board of Education, and other education partners resulting in the adoption of Senate Bill 97 so that the compulsory school attendance age will be raised to 18 in the 2015-16 school year for those districts whose local boards of education enact such a policy; and
Whereas, Local boards of education can begin adopting such a policy on the “first moment of June 25, 2013” or thereafter that contains an effective date of 2015-16; and
Whereas, The early adoption of such a policy will give districts the ability to give notice to rising freshmen of this important change and give school and district staffs time to plan for its successful implementation; and
Whereas, The quicker that 55 percent of Kentucky districts adopt these policies, then the sooner that all districts must adopt a policy, within four years of when the 55 percent is reached, and ensure that the interventions and programs are put in place to meet students’ needs in order for them to persist to graduation.
NOW, THEREFORE, be it resolved that the Kentucky Board of Education urges local boards of education to be courageous, early adopters of a policy to raise the compulsory school attendance age to 18, effective in the 2015-16 school year, in order to send a strong message that completing high school is essential to ensuring that every student graduates college- and career-ready.
Clarification on adoption of board policies raising the dropout age to 18 and on related grants - We have received several inquiries from districts since my announcement of the $10,000 incentive grants for the first 57 districts that adopt policies raising the dropout age to 18 and specific questions regarding the date of the passage of the board policy and eligibility for the incentive. Relative to the grants and how to apply, we will be distributing specific guidelines for this very soon.
Regarding the earliest date that local boards can legally adopt such policies, the Kentucky Attorney General has now issued OAG 13-005 (attached), which sets the effective date of legislation passed in the 2013 Regular Session of the Kentucky General Assembly as follows:
It follows that legislation (except for general appropriation measures and those containing emergency or delayed effective date provisions) passed during the 2013 Regular Session of the Kentucky General Assembly will be effective on the first moment of Tuesday, June 25, 2013.
Therefore, any board policy passed under non-emergency legislation from the 2013 Regular Session prior to “the first moment of Tuesday, June 25, 2013” may be challenged on its validity, due to the lack of statutory basis for the policy prior to the legislation’s effective date, in violation of KRS 160.290(2). KDE is thus recommending that local boards wait until the effective date of the legislation to pass their dropout policies. A local board could have a first and second reading of a proposed policy prior to the effective date of the legislation, but final action and formal adoption of the policy by the board should not occur prior to the effective date of the legislation, “the first moment of Tuesday, June 25, 2013.” A local board that passes its dropout policy prior to this date is not eligible for the $10,000 incentive since its policy is invalid.
Therefore, again, we are recommending that local boards wait until the effective date of the legislation to pass their dropout policies.
For questions on the adoption date of the local board policies, contact Amy Peabody at (502) 564-4474 or e-mail amy.peabody@education.ky.gov.
AP test grant information - The United States Department of Education has announced that it will provide funding to reduce the cost of AP exams for low-income students. Due to budget cuts, this federal grant will allow the state to provide funding to cover all but $10 per exam.
Below is a breakdown of the AP Exam fee for low-income students in 2013:
Cost Component                                                           Amount Per Exam
Student Contribution                                                    $10
Federal Subsidy                                                   $45
College Board Fee Reduction                                  $26
College Board Exam Rebate                                    $8
(Waived for Low-Income Students)                         
Total Exam Fee                                                    $89
Final AP Exam fee for qualifying students:                 $10
A student is eligible for the AP Exam Fee Waiver if the student: 1) qualifies for free or reduced lunch AND 2) was enrolled in the AP class for the 2012-2013 school year.
What the school must do:
• Fill in the "Option 1" oval on qualifying students' AP Exam answer sheets.
• When generating your invoice online, enter the total number of exams (not students) that qualify for the fee reduction.
• Maintain a list of students who qualify for the AP Exam Fee Waiver; record each individual exam that the student is taking. Ensure that each student is eligible for free or reduced lunch, and was enrolled in the corresponding AP class(es). This list must be kept on file in the event that KDE would be audited.
• Complete the attached form verifying each of the items. Then provide electronic signatures of the AP Coordinator and Principal of your school. E-mail this form to Amy Patterson at amy.patterson@education.ky.gov by June 30, 2013.
• All public high schools in Kentucky will collect NO MORE THAN $10 in AP Exam fees for each exam from students qualifying for the College Board fee reduction. The AP Coordinator must submit a form (attached) signed electronically by the AP Coordinator and Principal. The College Board will bill KDE directly for qualifying students' AP Exam fees.
• For more information, contact Amy Patterson, Kentucky Department of Education, 500 Mero Street, Frankfort, KY 40601; amy.patterson@education.ky.gov; (502) 564-4970, ext. 4513.
Highlights from the April 10 Kentucky Board of Education Meeting – The Kentucky Board of Education held its regular meeting on April 10 and discussed numerous topics including an update on the Professional Growth and Effectiveness System, update on national work relative to teacher and principal preparation, announcement of the expansion of schools participating in AdvanceKentucky, adoption of a resolution encouraging local boards to proceed with adopting a policy raising the dropout age to 18, adoption of 702 KAR 7:065, Designation of Agent to Manage Interscholastic Athletics (High School and Middle School) and Revisions in the Kentucky High School Athletics Association Bylaws and Constitution, and review of the regulation that will incorporate the new science standards. 
The materials for the meeting can be found at the following link:  http://portal.ksba.org/public/Meeting.aspx?PublicAgencyID=4388&PublicMeetingID=8900&AgencyTypeID=1.
To view and listen to a recording of the meeting, click on the following link: http://mediaportal.education.ky.gov/videos/kentucky-board-of-education-meeting-april-2013/ .
Legislative Summary from the 2013 Legislative Session - The 2013 legislative session, lasting only 30 days, had many education bills enacted, many of which support the state’s efforts to ensure all students graduate high school college- and career-ready. Several of the bills that were passed also were priorities for the Kentucky Board of Education (KBE).
Among those were Senate Bill 97 which, like similar legislation that stalled in previous sessions over the last several years, raises the compulsory student attendance age from 16 to 18.
The bill allows local school districts to adopt a policy to raise compulsory school age attendance from 16 to 18, beginning with the 2015-2016 school year. The policy must apply to all students residing in the district, even if they attend school in another district under a non-resident contract. (See articles found above on date that local boards can legally pass such policies.) Additionally, local school boards must certify to the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) that their districts have programs and supports in place to meet the needs of students.
If 55 percent (96 of 174 districts) of all Kentucky public school districts adopt a local policy to raise the compulsory attendance, then a statewide mandate raising the compulsory attendance to age 18 for all public school districts will take effect within four years of the 55 percent threshold being met.
In addition to compulsory attendance legislation, a bill that requires KDE to move forward with the creation a new statewide teacher and principal effectiveness system received approval. House Bill 180 – sponsored by state Rep. and House Education Committee Chairman Carl Rollins, D-Midway – requires KDE to have a statewide system of evaluation for all certified personnel in place for use in the 2014-2015 school year.
KDE has been working with dozens of teachers and principals for the past three years to create the system, known as the Professional Growth and Effectiveness System (PGES). The system, which is being field tested in 54 school districts this school year, will be piloted statewide in the 2013-14 school year. As part of its continued development and per House Bill 180, KBE will create regulations governing the system.
A list of all education bills that passed is attached.  Please note, the Attorney General has opined (OAG 13-005) that legislation passed during the 2013 Regular Session of the General Assembly, except for general appropriation measures and those containing emergency or delayed effective date provisions, will become effective on June 25, 2013.
If you have questions regarding legislation that passed, please contact Tracy Goff-Herman at tracy.herman@education.ky.gov or at (502) 564-4474 ext. 4815. 
​The next superintendents’ webcast will be held on April 29 from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. ET.  We will pass along the topics soon but if you have something you would like us to address, e-mail it to maryann.miller@education.ky.gov.
Commissioner’s Blog on raising the dropout age – My blog this week relates to SB97 and the raising of the dropout age to 18. Click on the following link to access my blog:  http://kyedcommissioner.blogspot.com/2013/04/raising-dropout-age.html.
If you have questions on any of the articles included in this edition of Fast Five, please contact me at the e-mail address or phone number found below.
Terry Holliday, Ph.D.
Commissioner of Education
Kentucky Department of Education
Office 502-564-3141
Fax 502-564-5680
E-mail Terry.Holliday@education.ky.gov
Twitter @kycommissioner
Facebook http://www.facebook.com/kydeptofed