Today's Law As Amended

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AB-2122 California Classified School Employee Teacher Credentialing Program.(2015-2016)



SECTION 1.

 Section 44390 of the Education Code is repealed.

SEC. 2.

 Section 44390 is added to the Education Code, to read:

44390.
 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) All children deserve a highly qualified teacher.
(b) California faces a severe teacher shortage.
(c) The demand for new teachers is growing due to the inability to attract new teachers into the profession, the high attrition rate of new teachers, and the retirement of existing teachers.
(d) California has a 50-percent higher pupil-to-teacher ratio than any other state in the country at 24 to 1.
(e) It is estimated that California will need 60,000 additional teachers to bring pupil-to-teacher ratios back to prerecession levels.
(f) If California were to reduce pupil-to-teacher ratios to the national average of 16 to 1, school districts would need to hire 135,000 additional teachers.
(g) Teacher shortages vary by subject and region.
(h) Enrollment in teacher credentialing programs dropped 76 percent between 2002 and 2014.
(i) In 2014 and 2015, 40 percent of credentials were awarded to underprepared teachers.
(j) The diversity in the teacher workforce in California does not match the diversity of the pupil population.
(k) Roughly 65 percent of teachers are white, 20 percent are Hispanic, and 15 percent are a different race or ethnicity.
(l) Classified school employees currently working in public schools represent a potential pool of future teachers.
(m) Classified school employees as a group make up the most diverse segment of the professional school community.
(n) Providing incentives for classified school employees to obtain a bachelor’s degree and become fully credentialed teachers is a proven strategy to increase the number of highly qualified teachers in California’s schools.

SEC. 3.

 Section 44391 of the Education Code is amended to read:

44391.
 This article shall be known, and may be cited, as the California Classified School Employee Teacher Credentialing Program.

SEC. 4.

 Section 44392 of the Education Code is amended to read:

44392.
 For the purposes of this article, unless the context clearly requires otherwise, the following terms shall have the following meanings:
(a) “Applicant” means a school district, charter school,  district  or county office of education applying for program funds under the California Classified School Employee Teacher Credentialing Program.
(b) “Institutions of higher education” means the California Community Colleges, the California State University, the University of California, and private not-for-profit institutions of higher education that offer a commission-approved teacher preparation program.
(c) “Participant” means a classified school employee who elects to participate in the California Classified School Employee Teacher Credentialing Program.
(d) “Program” means the California Classified School Employee Teacher Credentialing Program.
(e) “Classified school employee” means a noncertificated school employee currently working in a public school. school pursuant to this chapter. 
(f) “Teacher training program” means an undergraduate or graduate program of instruction conducted by a teacher preparation program approved by the commission that includes a developmentally sequenced career ladder to provide instruction, coursework, and clearly defined tasks for each level of the ladder, and that is designed to qualify students enrolled in the program for a teaching credential authorizing instruction in kindergarten and grades 1 to 12, inclusive.

SEC. 5.

 Section 44393 of the Education Code is amended to read:

44393.
 (a) The California Classified School Employee Teacher Credentialing Program is hereby established for the purpose of recruiting classified school employees to participate in a program designed to encourage them to enroll in teacher training programs and to provide instructional service as teachers in the public schools.
(b) Subject to an appropriation for these purposes in the annual Budget Act or another statute,  Act,  the commission shall issue a request for proposals to all school districts, charter schools,  districts  and county offices of education in the state in order to solicit applications for funding. The criteria adopted by the commission for the selection of school districts, charter schools,  districts  or county offices of education to participate in the program shall include all of the following:
(1) The extent to which the applicant demonstrates the capacity and willingness to accommodate the participation of classified school employees in teacher training programs conducted at institutions of higher education or a local educational agency. education. 
(2) The extent to which the applicant’s plan for the implementation of its recruitment program involves the active participation of one or more local campuses of the participating institutions of higher education in the development of coursework and teaching programs for participating classified school employees. Each selected applicant shall be required to enter into a written articulation agreement with the participating campuses of the institutions of higher education.
(3) The extent to which the applicant’s plan for recruitment attempts to meet the demand for bilingual cross-cultural teachers and teachers  of teacher shortages  in shortage areas in transitional kindergarten, kindergarten, and grades 1 to 12, inclusive. Each classified school employee selected to participate shall have successfully completed at least two years of undergraduate college or university coursework and shall have demonstrated an interest in obtaining a multiple subject or single subject teaching credential. 
(4) The extent to which a developmentally sequenced series of job descriptions leads from an entry-level classified school employee position to an entry-level teaching position in that school district, charter school,  district  or county office of education.
(5) The extent to which the applicant’s plan for recruitment attempts to meet its own specific teacher needs.
(c) An applicant that is selected to participate pursuant to subdivision (b) shall provide information about the program to all eligible classified school employees in the school district, charter school,  district  or county office of education and assistance to each classified school employee it recruits under the program regarding admission to a teacher training program.
(d) (1) An applicant shall require participants to satisfy both of the following requirements before participating in the program:
(A) Pass a criminal background check.
(B) Provide verification of one of the following:
(i) Has earned an associate or higher level degree.
(ii) Has successfully completed at least two years of study at a postsecondary educational institution.
(2) An applicant shall certify that it has received a commitment from each participant that he or she will accomplish all of the following:
(A) Graduate from an institution of higher education under the program with a bachelor’s degree.
(B) Complete all of the requirements for, and obtain, a multiple subject, single subject, or education specialist teaching credential.
(C) Complete one school year of classroom instruction in the school district, charter school,  district  or county office of education for each year that he or she receives assistance for books, fees, and tuition while attending an institution of higher education under the program.
(e) The commission shall contract with an independent evaluator with a proven record of experience in assessing teacher training programs to conduct an evaluation to determine the success of the program. The evaluation shall be conducted once every five years, with the first evaluation being  completed on or before July 1, 2021. The commission shall submit the completed evaluation to the Governor and the education policy and fiscal committees of the Assembly and Senate.
(f) On or before January 1 of each year, the commission shall report to the Legislature regarding the status of the program, including, but not limited to, the number of classified school employees recruited, the academic progress of the classified school employees recruited, the number of classified school employees recruited who are subsequently employed as teachers in the public schools, the degree to which the applicant meets the teacher shortage needs of the school district, charter school,  district  or county office of education, and the ethnic and racial composition of the participants in the program. The report shall be made in conformance with Section 9795 of the Government Code.
(g) It is the intent of the Legislature that, each fiscal year, funding for the California Classified School Employee Teacher Credentialing Program be allocated to the commission for grants for up to 1,000 new participants per year. A grant to an applicant shall not exceed four thousand dollars ($4,000) per participant per year. Funding for grants to applicants shall be contingent upon an appropriation in the annual Budget Act.