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AB-968 Community colleges: naturalist workforce model curriculum.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 01/15/2020 09:00 PM
AB968:v96#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  January 15, 2020
Amended  IN  Assembly  January 06, 2020
Amended  IN  Assembly  April 09, 2019

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 968


Introduced by Assembly Member Cristina Garcia

February 21, 2019


An act to add and repeal Article 6 (commencing with Section 78070) of to Chapter 1 of Part 48 of Division 7 of Title 3 of the Education Code, relating to community colleges.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 968, as amended, Cristina Garcia. Community colleges: naturalist workforce model curriculum.
Existing law establishes the California Community Colleges, under the administration of the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges, as one of the segments of public postsecondary education in this state. Existing law requires the board of governors to appoint a chief executive officer, to be known as the Chancellor of the California Community Colleges. Existing law establishes community college districts, administered by governing boards, throughout the state, and authorizes these districts to provide instruction to students at the community college campuses maintained by the districts.
This bill would require the chancellor’s office to establish a naturalist workforce model curriculum and related vocational programs on or before July 31, 2022, for the 2022–23 academic year. The bill would require the chancellor’s office to consult with specified entities in developing the curriculum, and would require the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges to approve, modify, or reject the curriculum. The bill would require the chancellor to submit a report to the Governor and Legislature on or about March 1 of each year providing assessments on the curriculum and related vocational programs.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Article 6 (commencing with Section 78070) is added to Chapter 1 of Part 48 of Division 7 of Title 3 of the Education Code, to read:
Article  6. Naturalist Workforce Model Curriculum and Related Vocational Programs

78070.
 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) California is known for its beautiful natural resources and prides itself on conservation of those resources.
(b) However, there are children who grow up in communities that do not have access to natural history, parks, or coastline.

(c)These children become adults who are not only ignorant of natural history, but who do not care about nature and view it as disposable and unimportant.

(d)

(c) In order to maintain California’s precious resources and conserve and protect our environment, the state must support our future naturalist and conservationist workforce.

(e)

(d) This is especially true in our disadvantaged communities where environmental inequities are ubiquitous. The California Community Colleges are key in supporting this workforce and creating more access to naturalist career pathways in California’s disadvantaged communities.

78071.
 For purposes of this section, the following definitions shall apply:
(a) “Chancellor’s office” means the Office of the Chancellor of the California Community Colleges.
(b) “Naturalist” means an expert in the natural and cultural history of public parks and open space who communicates to visitors of public parks through formal and informal education and interpretive programming.
(c) “Outdoor areas” includes, but is not limited to, parks, beaches, or recreational areas.

78072.

(a)The chancellor’s office shall establish a naturalist workforce model curriculum and related vocational programs pursuant to this section.

(b)

78072.
 (a) (1) The chancellor’s office, working in collaboration with the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges, shall develop a naturalist workforce model curriculum and related vocational programs to be offered by community college districts commencing on or before July 31, 2022, for the 2022–23 academic year.
(2) The model curriculum shall reflect regional needs, and shall be developed in consultation with the following entities:
(A) Experts from community colleges from regions across the state.
(B) Faculty with extensive background and instructional experience in related fields, such as environmental science and technology departments. technology.
(C) Representatives from conservancies.
(D) Nonprofit organizations that manage and protect natural resources, watersheds, land and aquatic habitats, and recreational uses, and that address waste management.
(E) The California Conservation Corps.
(F) County sanitation districts.
(G) Municipal water districts.
(H) Representatives from relevant private sector industries and companies.
(I) Other relevant governmental agencies.
(J) Entities related to alternative fuel and energy efficiency.
(K) Community college personnel with administrative duties for similar programs.

(c)The California Community Colleges shall coordinate and provide appropriate accredited classes for students enrolled at its colleges for creating career pathways for naturalist careers in various areas that correspond with related governmental agencies and departments, relevant conservation for-profit and nonprofit organizations, and private sector industries.

(d)

(b) (1) The Academic Senate for California Community Colleges shall approve, modify, or reject the final contents of the naturalist workforce model curriculum. For this purpose, the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges may rely upon its internal course identification and numbering system.
(2) To the extent practicable and feasible, the naturalist workforce model curriculum and related vocational programs shall do all of the following:
(A) Provide professional training working within with the natural and cultural history of the environment and open spaces.
(B) Provide professional training to work in state parks and in areas fields such as conservation and monitoring public health.
(C) Provide instruction and professional development relating to work within county and state agencies with the task of communicating with the public on various environmental, conservation, and public health concerns.
(D) Provide professional development and instruction related to data collection and communicating findings through writing reports and scientific papers or journals.
(E) Provide experience and professional development for presentations on environmental issues with an emphasis on conservation of resources for schools, clubs, interest groups, and park interpretive programs.
(F) Incorporate existing stackable credentials and sequences of modularized training or credentials that prepare students and make them competitive for jobs in emerging industry sectors related to the environmental sciences and conservation.

(e)

(c) (1) It is the intent of the Legislature that funds are appropriated in the annual Budget Act or another statute for allocation by the chancellor’s office for purposes of implementing the model curriculum as outlined above in a manner that reflects regional needs.
(2) The chancellor’s office shall distribute funds allocated for purposes of this subdivision to community college districts that offer coursework in accordance with the model curriculum developed under this article. A community college district shall use these funds for the costs of implementing this article, including, but not limited to, costs of participation in vocational programs related to coursework offered in accordance with the model curriculum.

78073.
 (a) (1) After finalizing the naturalist model curriculum and related vocational programs pursuant to Section 78072, the chancellor shall submit a report to the Governor and Legislature on or about March 1 of each year providing assessments on the naturalist model curriculum and related vocational programs.
(2) The report shall include, but not be limited to, participation rates of students in the naturalist model curriculum and related vocational programs, and, to the extent feasible, the percentage of participants who pursued careers providing public access to, or preserving, restoring, and enhancing, outdoor areas. The report shall also include relevant information and data, including information on workforce needs, in the environmental and conservation industries.
(b) The reports required by this section shall be submitted to the Legislature in accordance with Section 9795 of the Government Code.