EDUCATION CODE


TITLE 2. PUBLIC EDUCATION


SUBTITLE F. CURRICULUM, PROGRAMS, AND SERVICES


CHAPTER 29. EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS


SUBCHAPTER A. SPECIAL EDUCATION PROGRAM


Sec. 29.001. STATEWIDE PLAN. The agency shall develop, and modify as necessary, a statewide design, consistent with federal law, for the delivery of services to children with disabilities in this state that includes rules for the administration and funding of the special education program so that a free appropriate public education is available to all of those children between the ages of three and 21. The statewide design shall include the provision of services primarily through school districts and shared services arrangements, supplemented by regional education service centers. The agency shall also develop and implement a statewide plan with programmatic content that includes procedures designed to:

(1) ensure state compliance with requirements for supplemental federal funding for all state-administered programs involving the delivery of instructional or related services to students with disabilities;

(2) facilitate interagency coordination when other state agencies are involved in the delivery of instructional or related services to students with disabilities;

(3) periodically assess statewide personnel needs in all areas of specialization related to special education and pursue strategies to meet those needs through a consortium of representatives from regional education service centers, local education agencies, and institutions of higher education and through other available alternatives;

(4) ensure that regional education service centers throughout the state maintain a regional support function, which may include direct service delivery and a component designed to facilitate the placement of students with disabilities who cannot be appropriately served in their resident districts;

(5) allow the agency to effectively monitor and periodically conduct site visits of all school districts to ensure that rules adopted under this section are applied in a consistent and uniform manner, to ensure that districts are complying with those rules, and to ensure that annual statistical reports filed by the districts and not otherwise available through the Public Education Information Management System under Section 42.006, are accurate and complete;

(6) ensure that appropriately trained personnel are involved in the diagnostic and evaluative procedures operating in all districts and that those personnel routinely serve on district admissions, review, and dismissal committees;

(7) ensure that an individualized education program for each student with a disability is properly developed, implemented, and maintained in the least restrictive environment that is appropriate to meet the student's educational needs;

(8) ensure that, when appropriate, each student with a disability is provided an opportunity to participate in career and technology and physical education classes, in addition to participating in regular or special classes;

(9) ensure that each student with a disability is provided necessary related services;

(10) ensure that an individual assigned to act as a surrogate parent for a child with a disability, as provided by 20 U.S.C. Section 1415(b), is required to:

(A) complete a training program that complies with minimum standards established by agency rule;

(B) visit the child and the child's school;

(C) consult with persons involved in the child's education, including teachers, caseworkers, court-appointed volunteers, guardians ad litem, attorneys ad litem, foster parents, and caretakers;

(D) review the child's educational records;

(E) attend meetings of the child's admission, review, and dismissal committee;

(F) exercise independent judgment in pursuing the child's interests; and

(G) exercise the child's due process rights under applicable state and federal law; and

(11) ensure that each district develops a process to be used by a teacher who instructs a student with a disability in a regular classroom setting:

(A) to request a review of the student's individualized education program;

(B) that provides for a timely district response to the teacher's request; and

(C) that provides for notification to the student's parent or legal guardian of that response.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 430, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.

Amended by:

Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1283 (H.B. 1335), Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2011.

Sec. 29.002. DEFINITION. In this subchapter, "special services" means:

(1) special education instruction, which may be provided by professional and supported by paraprofessional personnel in the regular classroom or in an instructional arrangement described by Section 42.151; and

(2) related services, which are developmental, corrective, supportive, or evaluative services, not instructional in nature, that may be required for the student to benefit from special education instruction and for implementation of a student's individualized education program.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 767, Sec. 1, eff. June 13, 2001.

Sec. 29.003. ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA. (a) The agency shall develop specific eligibility criteria based on the general classifications established by this section with reference to contemporary diagnostic or evaluative terminologies and techniques. Eligible students with disabilities shall enjoy the right to a free appropriate public education, which may include instruction in the regular classroom, instruction through special teaching, or instruction through contracts approved under this subchapter. Instruction shall be supplemented by the provision of related services when appropriate.

(b) A student is eligible to participate in a school district's special education program if the student:

(1) is not more than 21 years of age and has a visual or auditory impairment that prevents the student from being adequately or safely educated in public school without the provision of special services; or

(2) is at least three but not more than 21 years of age and has one or more of the following disabilities that prevents the student from being adequately or safely educated in public school without the provision of special services:

(A) physical disability;

(B) mental retardation;

(C) emotional disturbance;

(D) learning disability;

(E) autism;

(F) speech disability; or

(G) traumatic brain injury.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.004. FULL INDIVIDUAL AND INITIAL EVALUATION. (a) A written report of a full individual and initial evaluation of a student for purposes of special education services shall be completed as follows, except as otherwise provided by this section:

(1) not later than the 45th school day following the date on which the school district, in accordance with 20 U.S.C. Section 1414(a), as amended, receives written consent for the evaluation, signed by the student's parent or legal guardian, except that if a student has been absent from school during that period on three or more days, that period must be extended by a number of school days equal to the number of school days during that period on which the student has been absent; or

(2) for students under five years of age by September 1 of the school year and not enrolled in public school and for students enrolled in a private or home school setting, not later than the 45th school day following the date on which the school district receives written consent for the evaluation, signed by a student's parent or legal guardian.

(a-1) If a school district receives written consent signed by a student's parent or legal guardian for a full individual and initial evaluation of a student at least 35 but less than 45 school days before the last instructional day of the school year, the evaluation must be completed and the written report of the evaluation must be provided to the parent or legal guardian not later than June 30 of that year. The student's admission, review, and dismissal committee shall meet not later than the 15th school day of the following school year to consider the evaluation. If a district receives written consent signed by a student's parent or legal guardian less than 35 school days before the last instructional day of the school year or if the district receives the written consent at least 35 but less than 45 school days before the last instructional day of the school year but the student is absent from school during that period on three or more days, Subsection (a)(1) applies to the date the written report of the full individual and initial evaluation is required.

(a-2) For purposes of this section, "school day" does not include a day that falls after the last instructional day of the spring school term and before the first instructional day of the subsequent fall school term. The commissioner by rule may determine days during which year-round schools are recessed that, consistent with this subsection, are not considered to be school days for purposes of this section.

(a-3) Subsection (a) does not impair any rights of an infant or toddler with a disability who is receiving early intervention services in accordance with 20 U.S.C. Section 1431.

(b) The evaluation shall be conducted using procedures that are appropriate for the student's most proficient method of communication.

(c) If a parent or legal guardian makes a written request to a school district's director of special education services or to a district administrative employee for a full individual and initial evaluation of a student, the district shall, not later than the 15th school day after the date the district receives the request:

(1) provide an opportunity for the parent or legal guardian to give written consent for the evaluation; or

(2) refuse to provide the evaluation and provide the parent or legal guardian with notice of procedural safeguards under 20 U.S.C. Section 1415(b).

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 767, Sec. 2, eff. June 13, 2001; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 539, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 757 (S.B. 816), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2013.

Sec. 29.0041. INFORMATION AND CONSENT FOR CERTAIN PSYCHOLOGICAL EXAMINATIONS OR TESTS. (a) On request of a child's parent, before obtaining the parent's consent under 20 U.S.C. Section 1414 for the administration of any psychological examination or test to the child that is included as part of the evaluation of the child's need for special education, a school district shall provide to the child's parent:

(1) the name and type of the examination or test; and

(2) an explanation of how the examination or test will be used to develop an appropriate individualized education program for the child.

(b) If the district determines that an additional examination or test is required for the evaluation of a child's need for special education after obtaining consent from the child's parent under Subsection (a), the district shall provide the information described by Subsections (a)(1) and (2) to the child's parent regarding the additional examination or test and shall obtain additional consent for the examination or test.

(c) The time required for the district to provide information and seek consent under Subsection (b) may not be counted toward the 60 calendar days for completion of an evaluation under Section 29.004. If a parent does not give consent under Subsection (b) within 20 calendar days after the date the district provided to the parent the information required by that subsection, the parent's consent is considered denied.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1008, Sec. 2, eff. June 20, 2003.

Sec. 29.005. INDIVIDUALIZED EDUCATION PROGRAM. (a) Before a child is enrolled in a special education program of a school district, the district shall establish a committee composed of the persons required under 20 U.S.C. Section 1401(11) to develop the child's individualized education program.

(b) The committee shall develop the individualized education program by agreement of the committee members or, if those persons cannot agree, by an alternate method provided by the agency. Majority vote may not be used to determine the individualized education program.

(c) If the individualized education program is not developed by agreement, the written statement of the program required under 20 U.S.C. Section 1401(11) must include the basis of the disagreement.

(d) If the child's parent is unable to speak English, the district shall:

(1) provide the parent with a written or audiotaped copy of the child's individualized education program translated into Spanish if Spanish is the parent's native language; or

(2) if the parent's native language is a language other than Spanish, make a good faith effort to provide the parent with a written or audiotaped copy of the child's individualized education program translated into the parent's native language.

(e) The commissioner by rule may require a school district to include in the individualized education program of a student with autism or another pervasive developmental disorder any information or requirement determined necessary to ensure the student receives a free appropriate public education as required under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. Section 1400 et seq.).

(f) The written statement of a student's individualized education program may be required to include only information included in the model form developed under Section 29.0051(a).

(g) The committee may determine that a behavior improvement plan or a behavioral intervention plan is appropriate for a student for whom the committee has developed an individualized education program. If the committee makes that determination, the behavior improvement plan or the behavioral intervention plan shall be included as part of the student's individualized education program and provided to each teacher with responsibility for educating the student.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1372, Sec. 1, eff. June 19, 1999; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 767, Sec. 3, eff. June 13, 2001.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 838 (S.B. 882), Sec. 12, eff. September 1, 2005.

Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1250 (S.B. 1788), Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2011.

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 458 (S.B. 914), Sec. 1, eff. June 14, 2013.

Sec. 29.0051. MODEL FORM. (a) The agency shall develop a model form for use in developing an individualized education program under Section 29.005(b). The form must be clear, concise, well organized, and understandable to parents and educators and may include only:

(1) the information included in the model form developed under 20 U.S.C. Section 1417(e)(1);

(2) a state-imposed requirement relevant to an individualized education program not required under federal law; and

(3) the requirements identified under 20 U.S.C. Section 1407(a)(2).

(b) The agency shall post on the agency's Internet website the form developed under Subsection (a).

(c) A school district may use the form developed under Subsection (a) to comply with the requirements for an individualized education program under 20 U.S.C. Section 1414(d).

Added by Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1250 (S.B. 1788), Sec. 2, eff. June 17, 2011.

Sec. 29.006. CONTINUING ADVISORY COMMITTEE. (a) The governor shall appoint a continuing advisory committee, composed of 17 members, under 20 U.S.C. Section 1412(a)(21). At least one member appointed under this subsection must be a director of special education programs for a school district or for a shared services arrangement of multiple school districts as provided by Section 29.007.

(b) The appointments are not subject to confirmation by the senate.

(c) Members of the committee are appointed for staggered terms of four years with the terms of eight or nine members expiring on February 1 of each odd-numbered year.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 767, Sec. 4, eff. June 13, 2001.

Amended by:

Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 44 (H.B. 861), Sec. 1, eff. May 12, 2011.

Sec. 29.007. SHARED SERVICES ARRANGEMENTS. School districts may enter into a written contract to jointly operate their special education programs. The contract must be approved by the commissioner. Funds to which the cooperating districts are entitled may be allocated to the districts jointly as shared services arrangement units or shared services arrangement funds in accordance with the shared services arrangement districts' agreement.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.008. CONTRACTS FOR SERVICES; RESIDENTIAL PLACEMENT. (a) A school district, shared services arrangement unit, or regional education service center may contract with a public or private facility, institution, or agency inside or outside of this state for the provision of services to students with disabilities. Each contract for residential placement must be approved by the commissioner. The commissioner may approve a residential placement contract only after at least a programmatic evaluation of personnel qualifications, adequacy of physical plant and equipment, and curriculum content. The commissioner may approve either the whole or a part of a facility or program.

(b) Except as provided by Subsection (c), costs of an approved contract for residential placement may be paid from a combination of federal, state, and local funds. The local share of the total contract cost for each student is that portion of the local tax effort that exceeds the district's local fund assignment under Section 42.252, divided by the average daily attendance in the district. If the contract involves a private facility, the state share of the total contract cost is that amount remaining after subtracting the local share. If the contract involves a public facility, the state share is that amount remaining after subtracting the local share from the portion of the contract that involves the costs of instructional and related services. For purposes of this subsection, "local tax effort" means the total amount of money generated by taxes imposed for debt service and maintenance and operation less any amounts paid into a tax increment fund under Chapter 311, Tax Code.

(c) When a student, including one for whom the state is managing conservator, is placed primarily for care or treatment reasons in a private residential facility that operates its own private education program, none of the costs may be paid from public education funds. If a residential placement primarily for care or treatment reasons involves a private residential facility in which the education program is provided by the school district, the portion of the costs that includes appropriate education services, as determined by the school district's admission, review, and dismissal committee, shall be paid from state and federal education funds.

(d) A district that contracts for the provision of education services rather than providing the services itself shall oversee the implementation of the student's individualized education program and shall annually reevaluate the appropriateness of the arrangement. An approved facility, institution, or agency with whom the district contracts shall periodically report to the district on the services the student has received or will receive in accordance with the contract as well as diagnostic or other evaluative information that the district requires in order to fulfill its obligations under this subchapter.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1071, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.

Sec. 29.009. PUBLIC NOTICE CONCERNING PRESCHOOL PROGRAMS FOR STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES. Each school district shall develop a system to notify the population in the district with children who are at least three years of age but younger than six years of age and who are eligible for enrollment in a special education program of the availability of the program.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.010. COMPLIANCE. (a) The agency shall adopt and implement a comprehensive system for monitoring school district compliance with federal and state laws relating to special education. The monitoring system must provide for ongoing analysis of district special education data and of complaints filed with the agency concerning special education services and for inspections of school districts at district facilities. The agency shall use the information obtained through analysis of district data and from the complaints management system to determine the appropriate schedule for and extent of the inspection.

(b) To complete the inspection, the agency must obtain information from parents and teachers of students in special education programs in the district.

(c) The agency shall develop and implement a system of sanctions for school districts whose most recent monitoring visit shows a failure to comply with major requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. Section 1400 et seq.), federal regulations, state statutes, or agency requirements necessary to carry out federal law or regulations or state law relating to special education.

(d) For districts that remain in noncompliance for more than one year, the first stage of sanctions shall begin with annual or more frequent monitoring visits. Subsequent sanctions may range in severity up to the withholding of funds. If funds are withheld, the agency may use the funds to provide, through alternative arrangements, services to students and staff members in the district from which the funds are withheld.

(e) The agency's complaint management division shall develop a system for expedited investigation and resolution of complaints concerning a district's failure to provide special education or related services to a student eligible to participate in the district's special education program.

(f) This section does not create an obligation for or impose a requirement on a school district or open-enrollment charter school that is not also created or imposed under another state law or a federal law.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1417, Sec. 1, eff. June 19, 1999.

Sec. 29.011. TRANSITION PLANNING. (a) The commissioner shall by rule adopt procedures for compliance with federal requirements relating to transition services for students who are enrolled in special education programs under this subchapter. The procedures must specify the manner in which a student's admission, review, and dismissal committee must consider, and if appropriate, address the following issues in the student's individualized education program:

(1) appropriate student involvement in the student's transition to life outside the public school system;

(2) if the student is younger than 18 years of age, appropriate parental involvement in the student's transition;

(3) if the student is at least 18 years of age, appropriate parental involvement in the student's transition, if the parent is invited to participate by the student or the school district in which the student is enrolled;

(4) any postsecondary education options;

(5) a functional vocational evaluation;

(6) employment goals and objectives;

(7) if the student is at least 18 years of age, the availability of age-appropriate instructional environments;

(8) independent living goals and objectives; and

(9) appropriate circumstances for referring a student or the student's parents to a governmental agency for services.

(b) The commissioner shall require each school district or shared services arrangement to designate at least one employee to serve as the district's or shared services arrangement's designee on transition and employment services for students enrolled in special education programs under this subchapter. The commissioner shall develop minimum training guidelines for a district's or shared services arrangement's designee. An individual designated under this subsection must provide information and resources about effective transition planning and services and interagency coordination to ensure that local school staff communicate and collaborate with:

(1) students enrolled in special education programs under this subchapter and the parents of those students; and

(2) as appropriate, local and regional staff of the:

(A) Health and Human Services Commission;

(B) Department of Aging and Disability Services;

(C) Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services;

(D) Department of State Health Services; and

(E) Department of Family and Protective Services.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 704, Sec. 1, 2, eff. June 20, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 257 (H.B. 617), Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2013.

Sec. 29.0111. BEGINNING OF TRANSITION PLANNING. Appropriate state transition planning under the procedure adopted under Section 29.011 must begin for a student not later than when the student reaches 14 years of age.

Added by Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1250 (S.B. 1788), Sec. 3, eff. June 17, 2011.

Sec. 29.0112. TRANSITION AND EMPLOYMENT GUIDE. (a) The agency, with assistance from the Health and Human Services Commission, shall develop a transition and employment guide for students enrolled in special education programs and their parents to provide information on statewide services and programs that assist in the transition to life outside the public school system. The agency may contract with a private entity to prepare the guide.

(b) The transition and employment guide must contain information specific to this state regarding:

(1) transition services;

(2) employment and supported employment services;

(3) social security programs;

(4) community and long-term services and support;

(5) postsecondary educational programs and services;

(6) information sharing with health and human services agencies and providers;

(7) guardianship and alternatives to guardianship;

(8) self-advocacy, person-directed planning, and self-determination; and

(9) contact information for all relevant state agencies.

(c) The transition and employment guide must be produced in an electronic format and posted on the agency's website in a manner that permits the guide to be easily identified and accessed.

(d) The agency must update the transition and employment guide posted on the agency's website at least once every two years.

(e) A school district shall:

(1) post the transition and employment guide on the district's website if the district maintains a website; and

(2) provide written information and, if necessary, assistance to a parent regarding how to access the electronic version of the guide at:

(A) the first meeting of the student's admission, review, and dismissal committee at which transition is discussed; or

(B) the first committee meeting that occurs after the date the guide becomes available, if a student has already had an admission, review, and dismissal committee meeting discussing transition.

Added by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 257 (H.B. 617), Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2013.

Sec. 29.012. RESIDENTIAL FACILITIES. (a) Except as provided by Subsection (b)(2), not later than the third day after the date a person 22 years of age or younger is placed in a residential facility, the residential facility shall:

(1) if the person is three years of age or older, notify the school district in which the facility is located, unless the facility is an open-enrollment charter school; or

(2) if the person is younger than three years of age, notify a local early intervention program in the area in which the facility is located.

(b) An agency or political subdivision that funds, licenses, certifies, contracts with, or regulates a residential facility must:

(1) require the facility to comply with Subsection (a) as a condition of the funding, licensing, certification, or contracting; or

(2) if the agency or political subdivision places a person in a residential facility, provide the notice under Subsection (a) for that person.

(c) For purposes of enrollment in a school, a person who resides in a residential facility is considered a resident of the school district or geographical area served by the open-enrollment charter school in which the facility is located.

(d) The Texas Education Agency, the Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation, the Texas Department of Human Services, the Texas Department of Health, the Department of Protective and Regulatory Services, the Interagency Council on Early Childhood Intervention, the Texas Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse, the Texas Juvenile Probation Commission, and the Texas Youth Commission by a cooperative effort shall develop and by rule adopt a memorandum of understanding. The memorandum must:

(1) establish the respective responsibilities of school districts and of residential facilities for the provision of a free, appropriate public education, as required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. Section 1400 et seq.) and its subsequent amendments, including each requirement for children with disabilities who reside in those facilities;

(2) coordinate regulatory and planning functions of the parties to the memorandum;

(3) establish criteria for determining when a public school will provide educational services;

(4) provide for appropriate educational space when education services will be provided at the residential facility;

(5) establish measures designed to ensure the safety of students and teachers; and

(6) provide for binding arbitration consistent with Chapter 2009, Government Code, and Section 154.027, Civil Practice and Remedies Code.

(e) This section does not apply to a residential treatment facility for juveniles established under Section 221.056, Human Resources Code.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 396, Sec. 2.13, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 767, Sec. 5, eff. June 13, 2001.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1187 (H.B. 3689), Sec. 4.002, eff. June 19, 2009.

Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 85 (S.B. 653), Sec. 3.003, eff. September 1, 2011.

Sec. 29.013. NONEDUCATIONAL COMMUNITY-BASED SUPPORT SERVICES FOR CERTAIN STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES. (a) The agency shall establish procedures and criteria for the allocation of funds appropriated under this section to school districts for the provision of noneducational community-based support services to certain students with disabilities and their families so that those students may receive an appropriate free public education in the least restrictive environment.

(b) The funds may be used only for eligible students with disabilities who would remain or would have to be placed in residential facilities primarily for educational reasons without the provision of noneducational community-based support services.

(c) The support services may include in-home family support, respite care, and case management for families with a student who otherwise would have been placed by a district in a private residential facility.

(d) The provision of services under this section does not supersede or limit the responsibility of other agencies to provide or pay for costs of noneducational community-based support services to enable any student with disabilities to receive a free appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment. Specifically, services provided under this section may not be used for a student with disabilities who is currently placed or who needs to be placed in a residential facility primarily for noneducational reasons.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.014. SCHOOL DISTRICTS THAT PROVIDE EDUCATION SOLELY TO STUDENTS CONFINED TO OR EDUCATED IN HOSPITALS. (a) This section applies only to a school district that provides education and related services only to students who are confined in or receive educational services in a hospital.

(b) A school district to which this section applies may operate an extended year program for a period not to exceed 45 days. The district's average daily attendance shall be computed for the regular school year plus the extended year.

(c) Notwithstanding any other provision of this code, a student whose appropriate education program is a regular education program may receive services and be counted for attendance purposes for the number of hours per week appropriate for the student's condition if the student:

(1) is temporarily classified as eligible for participation in a special education program because of the student's confinement in a hospital; and

(2) the student's education is provided by a district to which this section applies.

(d) The basic allotment for a student enrolled in a district to which this section applies is adjusted by:

(1) the cost of education adjustment under Section 42.102 for the school district in which the district is geographically located; and

(2) the weight for a homebound student under Section 42.151(a).

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.015. FOSTER PARENTS. (a) The school district shall give preferential consideration to a foster parent of a child with a disability when assigning a surrogate parent for the child.

(b) A foster parent may act as a parent of a child with a disability, as authorized under 20 U.S.C. Section 1415(b) and its subsequent amendments, if:

(1) the Department of Protective and Regulatory Services is appointed as the temporary or permanent managing conservator of the child;

(2) the child has been placed with the foster parent for at least 60 days;

(3) the foster parent agrees to:

(A) participate in making educational decisions on the child's behalf; and

(B) complete a training program for surrogate parents that complies with minimum standards established by agency rule; and

(4) the foster parent has no interest that conflicts with the child's interests.

(c) A foster parent who is denied the right to act as a surrogate parent or a parent under this section by a school district may file a complaint with the agency in accordance with federal law and regulations.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 430, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.

Sec. 29.016. EVALUATION CONDUCTED PURSUANT TO A SPECIAL EDUCATION DUE PROCESS HEARING. A special education hearing officer in an impartial due process hearing brought under 20 U.S.C. Section 1415 may issue an order or decision that authorizes one or more evaluations of a student who is eligible for, or who is suspected as being eligible for, special education services. Such an order or decision authorizes the evaluation of the student without parental consent as if it were a court order for purposes of any state or federal law providing for consent by order of a court.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 767, Sec. 8, eff. June 13, 2001.

Sec. 29.0161. CONTRACT WITH STATE OFFICE OF ADMINISTRATIVE HEARINGS FOR SPECIAL EDUCATION DUE PROCESS HEARINGS. Not later than December 1, 2003, the agency and the State Office of Administrative Hearings shall jointly determine whether it would be cost-effective for the agency to enter an interagency contract with the office under which the office would conduct all or part of the agency's special education due process hearings under 20 U.S.C. Section 1415 and its subsequent amendments.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 201, Sec. 18, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Sec. 29.0162. REPRESENTATION IN SPECIAL EDUCATION DUE PROCESS HEARING. (a) A person in an impartial due process hearing brought under 20 U.S.C. Section 1415 may be represented by:

(1) an attorney who is licensed in this state; or

(2) an individual who is not an attorney licensed in this state but who has special knowledge or training with respect to problems of children with disabilities and who satisfies qualifications under Subsection (b).

(b) The commissioner by rule shall adopt additional qualifications required of a representative for purposes of Subsection (a)(2). The rules must:

(1) prohibit an individual from being a representative under Subsection (a)(2) opposing a school district if:

(A) the individual has prior employment experience with the district; and

(B) the district raises an objection to the individual serving as a representative; and

(2) include requirements that the representative have knowledge of:

(A) special education due process rules, hearings, and procedure; and

(B) federal and state special education laws.

(c) A special education due process hearing officer shall determine whether an individual satisfies qualifications under Subsections (a)(2) and (b).

(d) The agency is not required to license or in any way other than as provided by Subsection (b) regulate representatives described by Subsection (a)(2) in a special education impartial due process hearing.

Added by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1333 (S.B. 709), Sec. 1, eff. June 14, 2013.

Sec. 29.017. TRANSFER OF PARENTAL RIGHTS AT AGE OF MAJORITY. (a) A student with a disability who is 18 years of age or older or whose disabilities of minority have been removed for general purposes under Chapter 31, Family Code, shall have the same right to make educational decisions as a student without a disability, except that the school district shall provide any notice required by this subchapter or 20 U.S.C. Section 1415 to both the student and the parents. All other rights accorded to parents under this subchapter or 20 U.S.C. Section 1415 transfer to the student.

(b) All rights accorded to parents under this subchapter or 20 U.S.C. Section 1415 transfer to students who are incarcerated in an adult or juvenile, state or local correctional institution.

(c) In accordance with 34 C.F.R. Section 300.517, the school district shall notify the student and the parents of the transfer of rights under this section.

(d) The commissioner shall adopt rules implementing the provisions of 34 C.F.R. Section 300.517(b).

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 767, Sec. 8, eff. June 13, 2001.

Sec. 29.018. SPECIAL EDUCATION GRANT. (a) From funds appropriated for the purposes of this section, federal funds, or any other funds available, the commissioner shall make grants available to school districts to assist districts in covering the cost of educating students with disabilities.

(b) A school district is eligible to apply for a grant under this section if:

(1) the district does not receive sufficient funds, including state funds provided under Section 42.151 and federal funds, for a student with disabilities to pay for the special education services provided to the student; or

(2) the district does not receive sufficient funds, including state funds provided under Section 42.151 and federal funds, for all students with disabilities in the district to pay for the special education services provided to the students.

(c) A school district that applies for a grant under this section must provide the commissioner with a report comparing the state and federal funds received by the district for students with disabilities and the expenses incurred by the district in providing special education services to students with disabilities.

(d) Expenses that may be included by a school district in applying for a grant under this section include the cost of training personnel to provide special education services to a student with disabilities.

(e) A school district that receives a grant under this section must educate students with disabilities in the least restrictive environment that is appropriate to meet the student's educational needs.

(f) The commissioner shall adopt rules as necessary to administer this section.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1328 (H.B. 3646), Sec. 16, eff. September 1, 2009.

Sec. 29.019. INDIVIDUALIZED EDUCATION PROGRAM FACILITATION. (a) The agency shall provide information to parents regarding individualized education program facilitation as an alternative dispute resolution method that may be used to avoid a potential dispute between a school district and a parent of a student with a disability. A district that chooses to use individualized education program facilitation shall provide information to parents regarding individualized education program facilitation. The information:

(1) must be included with other information provided to the parent of a student with a disability, although it may be provided as a separate document; and

(2) may be provided in a written or electronic format.

(b) Information provided by the agency under this section must indicate that individualized education program facilitation is an alternative dispute resolution method that some districts may choose to provide.

(c) If a school district chooses to offer individualized education program facilitation as an alternative dispute resolution method:

(1) the district may determine whether to use independent contractors, district employees, or other qualified individuals as facilitators;

(2) the information provided by the district under this section must include a description of any applicable procedures for requesting the facilitation; and

(3) the facilitation must be provided at no cost to a parent.

(d) The use of any alternative dispute resolution method, including individualized education program facilitation, must be voluntary on the part of the participants, and the use or availability of any such method may not in any manner be used to deny or delay the right to pursue a special education complaint, mediation, or due process hearing in accordance with federal law.

(e) Nothing in this section prohibits a school district from using individualized education program facilitation as the district's preferred method of conducting initial and annual admission, review, and dismissal committee meetings.

(f) The commissioner shall adopt rules necessary to implement this section.

Added by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 539 (S.B. 542), Sec. 1, eff. June 14, 2013.

Sec. 29.020. INDIVIDUALIZED EDUCATION PROGRAM FACILITATION PROJECT. (a) The agency shall develop rules in accordance with this section applicable to the administration of a state individualized education program facilitation project. The program shall include the provision of an independent individualized education program facilitator to facilitate an admission, review, and dismissal committee meeting with parties who are in a dispute about decisions relating to the provision of a free appropriate public education to a student with a disability. Facilitation implemented under the project must comply with rules developed under this subsection.

(b) The rules must include:

(1) a definition of independent individualized education program facilitation;

(2) forms and procedures for requesting, conducting, and evaluating independent individualized education program facilitation;

(3) training, knowledge, experience, and performance requirements for independent facilitators; and

(4) conditions required to be met in order for the agency to provide individualized education program facilitation at no cost to the parties.

(c) If the commissioner determines that adequate funding is available, the commissioner may authorize the use of federal funds to implement the individualized education program facilitation project in accordance with this section.

(d) The commissioner shall adopt rules necessary to implement this section.

Added by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 539 (S.B. 542), Sec. 1, eff. June 14, 2013.

SUBCHAPTER B. BILINGUAL EDUCATION AND SPECIAL LANGUAGE PROGRAMS


Sec. 29.051. STATE POLICY. English is the basic language of this state. Public schools are responsible for providing a full opportunity for all students to become competent in speaking, reading, writing, and comprehending the English language. Large numbers of students in the state come from environments in which the primary language is other than English. Experience has shown that public school classes in which instruction is given only in English are often inadequate for the education of those students. The mastery of basic English language skills is a prerequisite for effective participation in the state's educational program. Bilingual education and special language programs can meet the needs of those students and facilitate their integration into the regular school curriculum. Therefore, in accordance with the policy of the state to ensure equal educational opportunity to every student, and in recognition of the educational needs of students of limited English proficiency, this subchapter provides for the establishment of bilingual education and special language programs in the public schools and provides supplemental financial assistance to help school districts meet the extra costs of the programs.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.052. DEFINITIONS. In this subchapter:

(1) "Student of limited English proficiency" means a student whose primary language is other than English and whose English language skills are such that the student has difficulty performing ordinary classwork in English.

(2) "Parent" includes a legal guardian of a student.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.053. ESTABLISHMENT OF BILINGUAL EDUCATION AND SPECIAL LANGUAGE PROGRAMS. (a) The agency shall establish a procedure for identifying school districts that are required to offer bilingual education and special language programs in accordance with this subchapter.

(b) Within the first four weeks following the first day of school, the language proficiency assessment committee established under Section 29.063 shall determine and report to the board of trustees of the district the number of students of limited English proficiency on each campus and shall classify each student according to the language in which the student possesses primary proficiency. The board shall report that information to the agency before November 1 each year.

(c) Each district with an enrollment of 20 or more students of limited English proficiency in any language classification in the same grade level shall offer a bilingual education or special language program.

(d) Each district that is required to offer bilingual education and special language programs under this section shall offer the following for students of limited English proficiency:

(1) bilingual education in kindergarten through the elementary grades;

(2) bilingual education, instruction in English as a second language, or other transitional language instruction approved by the agency in post-elementary grades through grade 8; and

(3) instruction in English as a second language in grades 9 through 12.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.054. EXCEPTION. (a) If a program other than bilingual education must be used in kindergarten through the elementary grades, documentation for the exception must be filed with and approved by the agency.

(b) An application for an exception may be filed with the agency when a district is unable to hire a sufficient number of teachers with teaching certificates appropriate for bilingual education instruction to staff the required program. The application must be accompanied by:

(1) documentation showing that the district has taken all reasonable affirmative steps to secure teachers with teaching certificates appropriate for bilingual education instruction and has failed;

(2) documentation showing that the district has affirmative hiring policies and procedures consistent with the need to serve limited English proficiency students;

(3) documentation showing that, on the basis of district records, no teacher having a teaching certificate appropriate for bilingual instruction or emergency credentials has been unjustifiably denied employment by the district within the past 12 months; and

(4) a plan detailing specific measures to be used by the district to eliminate the conditions that created the need for an exception.

(c) An exception shall be granted under this section on an individual district basis and is valid for only one year. Application for an exception for a second or succeeding year must be accompanied by the documentation prescribed by Subsection (b).

(d) During the period for which a district is granted an exception under this section, the district must use alternative methods approved by the agency to meet the needs of its students of limited English proficiency, including hiring teaching personnel under a bilingual emergency permit.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.055. PROGRAM CONTENT; METHOD OF INSTRUCTION. (a) A bilingual education program established by a school district shall be a full-time program of dual-language instruction that provides for learning basic skills in the primary language of the students enrolled in the program and for carefully structured and sequenced mastery of English language skills. A program of instruction in English as a second language established by a school district shall be a program of intensive instruction in English from teachers trained in recognizing and dealing with language differences.

(b) A program of bilingual education or of instruction in English as a second language shall be designed to consider the students' learning experiences and shall incorporate the cultural aspects of the students' backgrounds.

(c) In subjects such as art, music, and physical education, students of limited English proficiency shall participate fully with English-speaking students in regular classes provided in the subjects.

(d) Elective courses included in the curriculum may be taught in a language other than English.

(e) Each school district shall provide students enrolled in the program a meaningful opportunity to participate fully with other students in all extracurricular activities.

(f) If money is appropriated for the purpose, the agency shall establish a limited number of pilot programs for the purpose of examining alternative methods of instruction in bilingual education and special language programs.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.056. ENROLLMENT OF STUDENTS IN PROGRAM. (a) The agency shall establish standardized criteria for the identification, assessment, and classification of students of limited English proficiency eligible for entry into the program or exit from the program. The student's parent must approve a student's entry into the program, exit from the program, or placement in the program. The school district or parent may appeal the decision under Section 29.064. The criteria for identification, assessment, and classification may include:

(1) results of a home language survey conducted within four weeks of each student's enrollment to determine the language normally used in the home and the language normally used by the student, conducted in English and the home language, signed by the student's parents if the student is in kindergarten through grade 8 or by the student if the student is in grades 9 through 12, and kept in the student's permanent folder by the language proficiency assessment committee;

(2) the results of an agency-approved English language proficiency test administered to all students identified through the home survey as normally speaking a language other than English to determine the level of English language proficiency, with students in kindergarten or grade 1 being administered an oral English proficiency test and students in grades 2 through 12 being administered an oral and written English proficiency test; and

(3) the results of an agency-approved proficiency test in the primary language administered to all students identified under Subdivision (2) as being of limited English proficiency to determine the level of primary language proficiency, with students in kindergarten or grade 1 being administered an oral primary language proficiency test and students in grades 2 through 12 being administered an oral and written primary language proficiency test.

(b) Tests under Subsection (a) shall be administered by professionals or paraprofessionals with the appropriate English and primary language skills and the training required by the test publisher.

(c) The language proficiency assessment committee may classify a student as limited English proficiency if:

(1) the student's ability in English is so limited or the student's disabilities are so severe that assessment procedures cannot be administered;

(2) the student's score or relative degree of achievement on the agency-approved English proficiency test is below the levels established by the agency as indicative of reasonable proficiency;

(3) the student's primary language proficiency score as measured by an agency-approved test is greater than the student's proficiency in English; or

(4) the language proficiency assessment committee determines, based on other information, including a teacher evaluation, parental viewpoint, or student interview, that the student's primary language proficiency is greater than the student's proficiency in English or that the student is not reasonably proficient in English.

(d) Not later than the 10th day after the date of the student's classification as a student of limited English proficiency, the language proficiency assessment committee shall give written notice of the classification to the student's parent. The notice must be in English and the parent's primary language. The parents of students eligible to participate in the required bilingual education program shall be informed of the benefits of the bilingual education or special language program and that it is an integral part of the school program.

(e) The language proficiency assessment committee may retain, for documentation purposes, all records obtained under this section.

(f) The district may not refuse to provide instruction in a language other than English to a student solely because the student has a disability.

(g) A district may transfer a student of limited English proficiency out of a bilingual education or special language program for the first time or a subsequent time if the student is able to participate equally in a regular all-English instructional program as determined by:

(1) agency-approved tests administered at the end of each school year to determine the extent to which the student has developed oral and written language proficiency and specific language skills in English;

(2) satisfactory performance on the reading assessment instrument under Section 39.023(a) or an English language arts assessment instrument under Section 39.023(c), as applicable, with the assessment instrument administered in English, or, if the student is enrolled in the first or second grade, an achievement score at or above the 40th percentile in the reading and language arts sections of an English standardized test approved by the agency; and

(3) agency-approved criterion-referenced tests and the results of a subjective teacher evaluation.

(h) If later evidence suggests that a student who has been transferred out of a bilingual education or special language program has inadequate English proficiency and achievement, the language proficiency assessment committee may reenroll the student in the program. Classification of students for reenrollment must be based on the criteria required by this section.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Amended by:

Acts 2006, 79th Leg., 3rd C.S., Ch. 5 (H.B. 1), Sec. 3.06, eff. May 31, 2006.

Sec. 29.0561. EVALUATION OF TRANSFERRED STUDENTS; REENROLLMENT. (a) The language proficiency assessment committee shall reevaluate a student who is transferred out of a bilingual education or special language program under Section 29.056(g) if the student earns a failing grade in a subject in the foundation curriculum under Section 28.002(a)(1) during any grading period in the first two school years after the student is transferred to determine whether the student should be reenrolled in a bilingual education or special language program.

(b) During the first two school years after a student is transferred out of a bilingual education or special language program under Section 29.056(g), the language proficiency assessment committee shall review the student's performance and consider:

(1) the total amount of time the student was enrolled in a bilingual education or special language program;

(2) the student's grades each grading period in each subject in the foundation curriculum under Section 28.002(a)(1);

(3) the student's performance on each assessment instrument administered under Section 39.023(a) or (c);

(4) the number of credits the student has earned toward high school graduation, if applicable; and

(5) any disciplinary actions taken against the student under Subchapter A, Chapter 37.

(c) After an evaluation under this section, the language proficiency assessment committee may require intensive instruction for the student or reenroll the student in a bilingual education or special language program.

Added by Acts 2006, 79th Leg., 3rd C.S., Ch. 5 (H.B. 1), Sec. 3.07, eff. May 31, 2006.

Sec. 29.057. FACILITIES; CLASSES. (a) Bilingual education and special language programs must be located in the regular public schools of the district rather than in separate facilities.

(b) Students enrolled in bilingual education or a special language program shall be placed in classes with other students of approximately the same age and level of educational attainment. The school district shall ensure that the instruction given each student is appropriate to the student's level of educational attainment, and the district shall keep adequate records of the educational level and progress of each student enrolled in the program.

(c) The maximum student-teacher ratio shall be set by the agency and shall reflect the special educational needs of students enrolled in the programs.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.058. ENROLLMENT OF STUDENTS WHO DO NOT HAVE LIMITED ENGLISH PROFICIENCY. With the approval of the school district and a student's parents, a student who does not have limited English proficiency may also participate in a bilingual education program. The number of participating students who do not have limited English proficiency may not exceed 40 percent of the number of students enrolled in the program.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.059. COOPERATION AMONG DISTRICTS. (a) A school district may join with one or more other districts to provide the bilingual education and special language programs required by this subchapter. The availability of the programs shall be publicized throughout the districts involved.

(b) A school district may allow a nonresident student of limited English proficiency to enroll in or attend its bilingual education or special language programs if the student's district of residence does not provide an appropriate program. The tuition for the student shall be paid by the district in which the student resides.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.060. PRESCHOOL, SUMMER SCHOOL, AND EXTENDED TIME PROGRAMS. (a) Each school district that is required to offer a bilingual education or special language program shall offer a voluntary program for children of limited English proficiency who will be eligible for admission to kindergarten or the first grade at the beginning of the next school year. A school that operates on a system permitted by this code other than a semester system shall offer 120 hours of instruction on a schedule the board of trustees of the district establishes. A school that operates on a semester system shall offer the program:

(1) during the period school is recessed for the summer; and

(2) for one-half day for eight weeks or on a similar schedule approved by the board of trustees.

(b) Enrollment of a child in the program is optional with the parent of the child.

(c) The program must be an intensive bilingual education or special language program that meets standards established by the agency. The student/teacher ratio for the program may not exceed 18/1.

(d) A school district may establish on a full- or part-time basis other summer school, extended day, or extended week bilingual education or special language programs for students of limited English proficiency and may join with other districts in establishing the programs.

(e) The programs required or authorized by this section may not be a substitute for programs required to be provided during the regular school year.

(f) The legislature may appropriate money from the foundation school fund for support of a program under Subsection (a).

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.061. BILINGUAL EDUCATION AND SPECIAL LANGUAGE PROGRAM TEACHERS. (a) The State Board for Educator Certification shall provide for the issuance of teaching certificates appropriate for bilingual education instruction to teachers who possess a speaking, reading, and writing ability in a language other than English in which bilingual education programs are offered and who meet the general requirements of Chapter 21. The board shall also provide for the issuance of teaching certificates appropriate for teaching English as a second language. The board may issue emergency endorsements in bilingual education and in teaching English as a second language.

(b) A teacher assigned to a bilingual education program must be appropriately certified for bilingual education by the board.

(c) A teacher assigned to an English as a second language or other special language program must be appropriately certified for English as a second language by the board.

(d) A school district may compensate a bilingual education or special language teacher for participating in a continuing education program that is in addition to the teacher's regular contract. The continuing education program must be designed to provide advanced bilingual education or special language program endorsement or skills.

(e) The State Board for Educator Certification and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board shall develop a comprehensive plan for meeting the teacher supply needs created by the programs outlined in this subchapter.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.062. COMPLIANCE. (a) The legislature recognizes that compliance with this subchapter is an imperative public necessity. Therefore, in accordance with the policy of the state, the agency shall evaluate the effectiveness of programs under this subchapter based on the student achievement indicators adopted under Section 39.053, including the results of assessment instruments. The agency may combine evaluations under this section with federal accountability measures concerning students of limited English proficiency.

(b) The areas to be monitored shall include:

(1) program content and design;

(2) program coverage;

(3) identification procedures;

(4) classification procedures;

(5) staffing;

(6) learning materials;

(7) testing materials;

(8) reclassification of students for either entry into regular classes conducted exclusively in English or reentry into a bilingual education or special education program; and

(9) activities of the language proficiency assessment committees.

(c) Not later than the 30th day after the date of an on-site monitoring inspection, the agency shall report its findings to the school district or open-enrollment charter school and to the division of accreditation.

(d) The agency shall notify a school district or open-enrollment charter school found in noncompliance in writing, not later than the 30th day after the date of the on-site monitoring. The district or open-enrollment charter school shall take immediate corrective action.

(e) If a school district or open-enrollment charter school fails to satisfy appropriate standards adopted by the commissioner for purposes of Subsection (a), the agency shall apply sanctions, which may include the removal of accreditation, loss of foundation school funds, or both.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 201, Sec. 19, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 895 (H.B. 3), Sec. 33, eff. June 19, 2009.

Sec. 29.063. LANGUAGE PROFICIENCY ASSESSMENT COMMITTEES. (a) Each school district that is required to offer bilingual education and special language programs shall establish a language proficiency assessment committee.

(b) Each committee shall include a professional bilingual educator, a professional transitional language educator, a parent of a limited English proficiency student, and a campus administrator.

(c) The language proficiency assessment committee shall:

(1) review all pertinent information on limited English proficiency students, including the home language survey, the language proficiency tests in English and the primary language, each student's achievement in content areas, and each student's emotional and social attainment;

(2) make recommendations concerning the most appropriate placement for the educational advancement of the limited English proficiency student after the elementary grades;

(3) review each limited English proficiency student's progress at the end of the school year in order to determine future appropriate placement;

(4) monitor the progress of students formerly classified as limited English proficiency who have transferred out of the bilingual education or special language program and, based on the information, designate the most appropriate placement for such students; and

(5) determine the appropriateness of a program that extends beyond the regular school year based on the needs of each limited English proficiency student.

(d) The agency may prescribe additional duties for language proficiency assessment committees.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.064. APPEALS. A parent of a student enrolled in a school district offering bilingual education or special language programs may appeal to the commissioner if the district fails to comply with the requirements established by law or by the agency as authorized by this subchapter. If the parent disagrees with the placement of the student in the program, the parent may appeal that decision to the board of trustees. Appeals shall be conducted in accordance with procedures adopted by the commissioner.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.066. PEIMS REPORTING REQUIREMENTS. (a) A school district that is required to offer bilingual education or special language programs shall include the following information in the district's Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS) report:

(1) demographic information, as determined by the commissioner, on students enrolled in district bilingual education or special language programs;

(2) the number and percentage of students enrolled in each instructional model of a bilingual education or special language program offered by the district; and

(3) the number and percentage of students identified as students of limited English proficiency who do not receive specialized instruction.

(b) For purposes of this section, the commissioner shall adopt rules to classify programs under this section as follows:

(1) if the program is a bilingual education program, the program must be classified under the Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS) report as:

(A) transitional bilingual/early exit: a bilingual program that serves students identified as students of limited English proficiency in both English and Spanish and transfers a student to English-only instruction not earlier than two or later than five years after the student enrolls in school;

(B) transitional bilingual/late exit: a bilingual program that serves students identified as students of limited English proficiency in both English and Spanish and transfers a student to English-only instruction not earlier than six or later than seven years after the student enrolls in school;

(C) dual language immersion/two-way: a biliteracy program that integrates students proficient in English and students identified as students of limited English proficiency in both English and Spanish and transfers a student identified as a student of limited English proficiency to English-only instruction not earlier than six or later than seven years after the student enrolls in school; or

(D) dual language immersion/one-way: a biliteracy program that serves only students identified as students of limited English proficiency in both English and Spanish and transfers a student to English-only instruction not earlier than six or later than seven years after the student enrolls in school; and

(2) if the program is a special language program, the program must be classified under the Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS) report as:

(A) English as a second language/content-based: an English program that serves students identified as students of limited English proficiency in English only by providing a full-time teacher certified under Section 29.061(c) to provide supplementary instruction for all content area instruction; or

(B) English as a second language/pull-out: an English program that serves students identified as students of limited English proficiency in English only by providing a part-time teacher certified under Section 29.061(c) to provide English language arts instruction exclusively, while the student remains in a mainstream instructional arrangement in the remaining content areas.

(c) If the school district has received a waiver and is not required to offer a bilingual education or special language program in a student's native language or if the student's parents have refused to approve the student's entry into a program as provided by Section 29.056, the program must be classified under the Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS) report as: no bilingual education or special language services provided.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1340 (S.B. 1871), Sec. 2, eff. June 15, 2007.

SUBCHAPTER C. COMPENSATORY EDUCATION PROGRAMS


Sec. 29.081. COMPENSATORY, INTENSIVE, AND ACCELERATED INSTRUCTION. (a) Each school district shall use the student performance data resulting from the basic skills assessment instruments and achievement tests administered under Subchapter B, Chapter 39, to design and implement appropriate compensatory, intensive, or accelerated instructional services for students in the district's schools that enable the students to be performing at grade level at the conclusion of the next regular school term.

(b) Each district shall provide accelerated instruction to a student enrolled in the district who has taken an end-of-course assessment instrument administered under Section 39.023(c) and has not performed satisfactorily on the assessment instrument or who is at risk of dropping out of school.

(b-1) Each school district shall offer before the next scheduled administration of the assessment instrument, without cost to the student, additional accelerated instruction to each student in any subject in which the student failed to perform satisfactorily on an end-of-course assessment instrument required for graduation.

(b-2) A district that is required to provide accelerated instruction under Subsection (b-1) shall separately budget sufficient funds, including funds under Section 42.152, for that purpose. A district may not budget funds received under Section 42.152 for any other purpose until the district adopts a budget to support additional accelerated instruction under Subsection (b-1).

(b-3) A district shall evaluate the effectiveness of accelerated instruction programs under Subsection (b-1) and annually hold a public hearing to consider the results.

(c) Each school district shall evaluate and document the effectiveness of the accelerated instruction in reducing any disparity in performance on assessment instruments administered under Subchapter B, Chapter 39, or disparity in the rates of high school completion between students at risk of dropping out of school and all other district students.

(d) For purposes of this section, "student at risk of dropping out of school" includes each student who is under 26 years of age and who:

(1) was not advanced from one grade level to the next for one or more school years;

(2) if the student is in grade 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, or 12, did not maintain an average equivalent to 70 on a scale of 100 in two or more subjects in the foundation curriculum during a semester in the preceding or current school year or is not maintaining such an average in two or more subjects in the foundation curriculum in the current semester;

(3) did not perform satisfactorily on an assessment instrument administered to the student under Subchapter B, Chapter 39, and who has not in the previous or current school year subsequently performed on that instrument or another appropriate instrument at a level equal to at least 110 percent of the level of satisfactory performance on that instrument;

(4) if the student is in prekindergarten, kindergarten, or grade 1, 2, or 3, did not perform satisfactorily on a readiness test or assessment instrument administered during the current school year;

(5) is pregnant or is a parent;

(6) has been placed in an alternative education program in accordance with Section 37.006 during the preceding or current school year;

(7) has been expelled in accordance with Section 37.007 during the preceding or current school year;

(8) is currently on parole, probation, deferred prosecution, or other conditional release;

(9) was previously reported through the Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS) to have dropped out of school;

(10) is a student of limited English proficiency, as defined by Section 29.052;

(11) is in the custody or care of the Department of Protective and Regulatory Services or has, during the current school year, been referred to the department by a school official, officer of the juvenile court, or law enforcement official;

(12) is homeless, as defined by 42 U.S.C. Section 11302, and its subsequent amendments; or

(13) resided in the preceding school year or resides in the current school year in a residential placement facility in the district, including a detention facility, substance abuse treatment facility, emergency shelter, psychiatric hospital, halfway house, or foster group home.

(d-1) Notwithstanding Subsection (d)(1), a student is not considered a student at risk of dropping out of school if the student did not advance from prekindergarten or kindergarten to the next grade level only as the result of the request of the student's parent.

(e) A school district may use a private or public community-based dropout recovery education program to provide alternative education programs for students at risk of dropping out of school. The programs must:

(1) provide not less than four hours of instructional time per day;

(2) employ as faculty and administrators persons with baccalaureate or advanced degrees;

(3) provide at least one instructor for each 28 students;

(4) perform satisfactorily according to performance indicators and accountability standards adopted for alternative education programs by the commissioner; and

(5) comply with this title and rules adopted under this title except as otherwise provided by this subsection.

(f) The commissioner shall include students in attendance in a program under Subsection (e) in the computation of the district's average daily attendance for funding purposes.

(g) In addition to students described by Subsection (d), a student who satisfies local eligibility criteria adopted by the board of trustees of a school district may receive instructional services under this section. The number of students receiving services under this subsection during a school year may not exceed 10 percent of the number of students described by Subsection (d) who received services from the district during the preceding school year.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1588, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 30, 1999; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 725, Sec. 1, 2, eff. June 13, 2001.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1312 (S.B. 1031), Sec. 4, eff. September 1, 2007.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 690 (H.B. 2703), Sec. 1, eff. June 19, 2009.

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 211 (H.B. 5), Sec. 20, eff. June 10, 2013.

Sec. 29.082. OPTIONAL EXTENDED YEAR PROGRAM. (a) A school district may set aside an amount from the district's allotment under Section 42.152 or may apply to the agency for funding of an extended year program for a period not to exceed 30 instructional days for students in:

(1) kindergarten through grade 11 who are identified as likely not to be promoted to the next grade level for the succeeding school year; or

(2) grade 12 who are identified as likely not to graduate from high school before the beginning of the succeeding school year.

(b) The commissioner may adopt rules for the administration of programs provided under this section.

(c) A school district may not enroll more than 16 students in a class provided under this section.

(d) Each class provided under this section shall be taught by a teacher who has completed successfully a program that provides training to teach a class under this section and that satisfies standards the commissioner establishes.

(e) A student who attends at least 90 percent of the program days of a program under this section and who satisfies the requirements for promotion prescribed by Section 28.021 shall be promoted to the next grade level at the beginning of the next school year unless a parent of the student presents a written request to the school principal that the student not be promoted to the next grade level. As soon as practicable after receiving the request from a parent, the principal shall hold a formal meeting with the student's parent, extended year program teacher, and school counselor. During the meeting, the principal, teacher, or school counselor shall explain the longitudinal statistics on the academic performance of students who are not promoted to the next grade level and provide information on the effect of retention on a student's self-esteem and on the likelihood of a student dropping out of school. After the meeting, the parent may withdraw the request that the student not be promoted to the next grade level. If the parent of a student eligible for promotion under this subsection withdraws the request, the student shall be promoted. If a student is promoted under this subsection, the school district shall continue to use innovative practices to ensure that the student is successful in school in succeeding years.

(f) A school district that provides a program under this section shall adopt a policy designed to lead to immediate reduction and ultimate elimination of student retention.

(g) A school district shall provide transportation to each student who is required to attend a program under this section and who is eligible for regular transportation services.

(h) The commissioner shall give priority to applications for extended year programs to districts with high concentrations of educationally disadvantaged students.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 738, Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 1997; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1212, Sec. 8, eff. June 20, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1328 (H.B. 3646), Sec. 17, eff. September 1, 2009.

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 443 (S.B. 715), Sec. 22, eff. June 14, 2013.

Sec. 29.0821. OPTIONAL FLEXIBLE YEAR PROGRAM. (a) A school district may provide a flexible year program for students who did not or are likely not to perform successfully on an assessment instrument administered under Section 39.023 or who would not otherwise be promoted to the next grade level.

(b) To enable a school district to provide additional instructional days for a program under this section, with the approval of the commissioner, a school district may:

(1) provide a number of days of instruction during the regular school year that is not more than 10 days fewer than the number required under Section 25.081(a); and

(2) use for instructional purposes not more than five days that would otherwise be used for staff development or teacher preparation.

(c) Notwithstanding any reduction in the number of instructional days in the regular school year or in the number of staff development days, each educator employed under a 10-month contract must provide the minimum days of service required under Section 21.401.

(d) A school district may require educational support personnel to provide service as necessary for an optional flexible year program.

(e) The commissioner may adopt rules for the administration of programs provided under this section.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 824, Sec. 1, eff. June 20, 2003.

Sec. 29.0822. OPTIONAL FLEXIBLE SCHOOL DAY PROGRAM. (a) Notwithstanding Section 25.081 or 25.082, a school district may apply to the commissioner to provide a flexible school day program for students who:

(1) have dropped out of school or are at risk of dropping out of school as defined by Section 29.081;

(2) attend a campus that is implementing an innovative redesign of the campus or an early college high school under a plan approved by the commissioner; or

(3) as a result of attendance requirements under Section 25.092, will be denied credit for one or more classes in which the students have been enrolled.

(b) To enable a school district to provide a program under this section that meets the needs of students described by Subsection (a), a school district that meets application requirements may:

(1) provide flexibility in the number of hours each day a student attends;

(2) provide flexibility in the number of days each week a student attends; or

(3) allow a student to enroll in less than or more than a full course load.

(c) Except in the case of a course designed for a student described by Subsection (a)(3), a course offered in a program under this section must provide for at least the same number of instructional hours as required for a course offered in a program that meets the required minimum number of instructional days under Section 25.081 and the required length of school day under Section 25.082.

(d) The commissioner may adopt rules for the administration of this section, including rules establishing application requirements. The commissioner shall calculate average daily attendance for students served under this section. The commissioner shall allow accumulations of hours of instruction for students whose schedule would not otherwise allow full state funding. Funding under this subsection shall be determined based on the number of instructional days in the school district calendar and a seven-hour school day, but attendance may be cumulated over a school year, including any summer or vacation session. The attendance of students who accumulate less than the number of attendance hours required under this subsection shall be proportionately reduced for funding purposes. The commissioner may:

(1) set maximum funding amounts for an individual course under this section; and

(2) limit funding for the attendance of a student described by Subsection (a)(3) in a course under this section to funding only for the attendance necessary for the student to earn class credit that, as a result of attendance requirements under Section 25.092, the student would not otherwise be able to receive without retaking the class.

(e) A student described by Subsection (a)(3) may enroll in a course in a program under this section offered during the school year or during the period in which school is recessed for the summer to enable the student to earn class credit that, as a result of attendance requirements under Section 25.092, the student would not otherwise be able to receive without retaking the class.

Added by Acts 2006, 79th Leg., 3rd C.S., Ch. 5 (H.B. 1), Sec. 5.03, eff. May 31, 2006.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 364 (H.B. 1297), Sec. 1, eff. June 19, 2009.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1328 (H.B. 3646), Sec. 18, eff. September 1, 2009.

Sec. 29.083. STUDENT RETENTION INFORMATION. The agency shall collect data from school districts through the Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS) relating to grade level retention of students.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.084. TUTORIAL SERVICES. (a) Each school district may provide tutorial services at the district's schools.

(b) A district that provides tutorial services shall require a student whose grade in a subject for a grade reporting period is lower than the equivalent of 70 on a scale of 100 to attend tutorials.

(c) A district may provide transportation for a student who is required to attend tutorial services and who is eligible for regular transportation services.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.085. LIFE SKILLS PROGRAM FOR STUDENT PARENTS. (a) A school district may provide an integrated program of educational and support services for students who are pregnant or who are parents.

(b) The program shall include:

(1) individual counseling, peer counseling, and self-help programs;

(2) career counseling and job readiness training;

(3) day care for the students' children on the campus or at a day-care facility in close proximity to the campus;

(4) transportation for children of students to and from the campus or day-care facility;

(5) transportation for students, as appropriate, to and from the campus or day-care facility;

(6) instruction related to knowledge and skills in child development, parenting, and home and family living; and

(7) assistance to students in the program in obtaining available services from government agencies or community service organizations, including prenatal and postnatal health and nutrition programs.

(c) The district shall solicit recommendations for obtaining community support for the students and their children from organizations for parents of students in the district and from other community organizations.

(d) School districts may operate shared services arrangement programs under this section.

(e) From funds appropriated for the purpose, the commissioner shall distribute funds for programs under this section. In distributing those funds, the commissioner shall give preference to school districts that received funds for a program under this section for the preceding school year and then to the districts that have the highest concentration of students who are pregnant or who are parents. To receive funds for a program under this section, a school district must apply to the commissioner. A program established under this section is required only in school districts in which the program is financed by funds distributed under this subsection and any other funds available for the program.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1328 (H.B. 3646), Sec. 19, eff. September 1, 2009.

Sec. 29.086. BASIC SKILLS PROGRAMS FOR HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS. (a) A school district may apply to the commissioner for funding of special programs for students in grade nine who are at risk of not earning sufficient credit or who have not earned sufficient credit to advance to grade 10 and who fail to meet minimum skills levels established by the commissioner. A school district may, with the consent of a student's parent or guardian, assign a student to a program under this section. A program under this section may not exceed 210 instructional days.

(b) A program under this section must emphasize basic skills in areas of the required curriculum under Section 28.002 and must offer students the opportunity to increase credits required for high school graduation under state or school district policy. A program under this section may be provided by a school district or an entity contracting with a school district to provide the program.

(c) The commissioner shall award funds to districts in accordance with a competitive grant process developed by the commissioner. A grant may be made to a consortium of school districts. The criteria by which the commissioner awards a grant must include the quality of the proposed program and the school district's demonstrated need for the program. An approved program must include criteria that permit measurement of student progress, and the district shall:

(1) annually evaluate the progress of students in the program; and

(2) submit the results of the evaluation to the commissioner at the end of the school year.

(d) The commissioner shall establish minimum levels of student enrollment and standards of student progress required for continued funding of a program under this section. The commissioner may eliminate funding for a program in a subsequent school year if the program fails to achieve sufficient levels of student progress.

(e) The amount of a grant under this section must take into account funds distributed to the school district under Chapter 42.

(f) The commissioner may adopt rules for the administration of programs under this section.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 396, Sec. 2.02, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.

Sec. 29.087. HIGH SCHOOL EQUIVALENCY PROGRAMS. (a) The agency shall develop a process by which a school district or open-enrollment charter school may apply to the commissioner for authority to operate a program to prepare eligible students to take a high school equivalency examination.

(b) Any school district or open-enrollment charter school may apply for authorization to operate a program under this section. As part of the application process, the commissioner shall require a district or school to provide information regarding the operation of any similar program during the preceding five years.

(b-1) A school district or open-enrollment charter school authorized by the commissioner on or before August 31, 2003, to operate a program under this section may continue to operate that program in accordance with this section.

(c) A school district or open-enrollment charter school may not increase enrollment of students in a program authorized by this section by more than five percent of the number of students enrolled in the similar program operated by the district or school during the 2000-2001 school year.

(d) A student is eligible to participate in a program authorized by this section if:

(1) the student has been ordered by a court under Article 45.054, Code of Criminal Procedure, as added by Chapter 1514, Acts of the 77th Legislature, Regular Session, 2001, or by the Texas Youth Commission to:

(A) participate in a preparatory class for the high school equivalency examination; or

(B) take the high school equivalency examination administered under Section 7.111; or

(2) the following conditions are satisfied:

(A) the student is at least 16 years of age at the beginning of the school year or semester;

(B) the student is a student at risk of dropping out of school, as defined by Section 29.081;

(C) the student and the student's parent or guardian agree in writing to the student's participation;

(D) at least two school years have elapsed since the student first enrolled in ninth grade and the student has accumulated less than one third of the credits required to graduate under the minimum graduation requirements of the district or school; and

(E) any other conditions specified by the commissioner.

(e) A school district or open-enrollment charter school shall inform each student who has completed a program authorized by this section of the time and place at which the student may take the high school equivalency examination. Notwithstanding any provision of this section, a student may not take the high school equivalency examination except as authorized by Section 7.111.

(f) A student participating in a program authorized by this section, other than a student ordered to participate under Subsection (d)(1), must have taken the appropriate end-of-course assessment instruments specified by Section 39.023(c) before entering the program and must take each appropriate end-of-course assessment instrument administered during the period in which the student is enrolled in the program. Except for a student ordered to participate under Subsection (d)(1), a student participating in the program may not take the high school equivalency examination unless the student has taken the assessment instruments required by this subsection.

(g) A student enrolled in a program authorized by this section may not participate in a competition or other activity sanctioned or conducted by the University Interscholastic League.

(h) A student who has received a high school equivalency certificate is entitled to enroll in a public school as authorized by Section 25.001 and is entitled to the benefits of the Foundation School Program under Section 42.003 in the same manner as any other student who has not received a high school diploma.

(i) The agency shall request permission from the General Educational Development Testing Service to administer the service's high school equivalency examination to students enrolled in high school who participate in a program authorized by this section. From funds appropriated to the agency that may be used for the purpose, the agency may pay a fee imposed by the service for granting permission to the agency necessary to allow operation of programs authorized by this section.

(j) For purposes of funding under Chapters 41, 42, and 46, a student attending a program authorized by this section may be counted in attendance only for the actual number of hours each school day the student attends the program, in accordance with Sections 25.081 and 25.082.

(k) The board of trustees of a school district or the governing board of an open-enrollment charter school shall:

(1) hold a public hearing concerning the proposed application of the district or school before applying to operate a program authorized by this section; and

(2) subsequently hold a public hearing annually to review the performance of the program.

(l) The commissioner may revoke a school district's or open-enrollment charter school's authorization under this section after consideration of relevant factors, including performance of students participating in the district's or school's program on assessment instruments required under Chapter 39, the percentage of students participating in the district's or school's program who complete the program and perform successfully on the high school equivalency examination, and other criteria adopted by the commissioner. A decision by the commissioner under this subsection is final and may not be appealed.

(m) Repealed by Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1083, Sec. 25(9), eff. June 17, 2011.

(n) The commissioner may adopt rules to implement this section.

(o) Repealed by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 373, Sec. 2, eff. June 18, 2003.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1514, Sec. 7, eff. Sept. 1, 2001. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 283, Sec. 41, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 373, Sec. 1, 2, eff. June 18, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1312 (S.B. 1031), Sec. 5, eff. September 1, 2007.

Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1083 (S.B. 1179), Sec. 25(9), eff. June 17, 2011.

Sec. 29.088. AFTER-SCHOOL AND SUMMER INTENSIVE MATHEMATICS INSTRUCTION PROGRAMS. (a) A school district may provide an intensive after-school program or an intensive program during the period that school is recessed for the summer to provide mathematics instruction to:

(1) students who are not performing at grade level in mathematics to assist those students in performing at grade level;

(2) students who are not performing successfully in a mathematics course to assist those students in successfully completing the course; or

(3) students other than those described by Subdivision (1) or (2), as determined by the district.

(b) Before providing a program under this section, the board of trustees of a school district must adopt a policy for:

(1) determining student eligibility for participating in the program that:

(A) prescribes the grade level or course a student must be enrolled in to be eligible; and

(B) provides for considering teacher recommendations in determining eligibility;

(2) ensuring that parents of or persons standing in parental relation to eligible students are provided notice of the program;

(3) ensuring that eligible students are encouraged to attend the program;

(4) ensuring that the program is offered at one or more locations in the district that are easily accessible to eligible students; and

(5) measuring student progress on completion of the program.

(c) The commissioner by rule shall:

(1) prescribe a procedure that a school district must follow to apply for and receive funding for a program under this section;

(2) adopt guidelines for determining which districts receive funding if there is not sufficient funding for each district that applies;

(3) require each district providing a program to report student performance results to the commissioner within the period and in the manner prescribed by the rule; and

(4) based on district reports under Subdivision (3) and any required analysis and verification of those reports, disseminate to each district in this state information concerning instructional methods that have proved successful in improving student performance in mathematics.

(d) A program provided under this section shall be paid for with funds appropriated for that purpose.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 834, Sec. 8, eff. Sept. 1, 2001. Renumbered from Education Code Sec. 29.087 by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1275, Sec. 2(15), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Sec. 29.089. MENTORING SERVICES PROGRAM. (a) Each school district may provide a mentoring services program to students at risk of dropping out of school, as defined by Section 29.081.

(b) The commissioner, in consultation with the governor, lieutenant governor, and speaker of the house of representatives, by rule shall determine accountability standards under this section for a school district providing a mentoring services program using funds allocated under Section 42.152.

(c) The board of trustees of the district shall obtain the consent of a student's parent or guardian before allowing the student to participate in the program.

(d) The board of trustees of the district may arrange for any public or nonprofit community-based organization to come to the district's schools and implement the program.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 783, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Sec. 29.090. AFTER-SCHOOL AND SUMMER INTENSIVE SCIENCE INSTRUCTION PROGRAMS. (a) A school district may provide an intensive after-school program or an intensive program during the period that school is recessed for the summer to provide science instruction to:

(1) students who are not performing at grade level in science to assist those students in performing at grade level;

(2) students who are not performing successfully in a science course to assist those students in successfully completing the course; or

(3) students other than those described by Subdivision (1) or (2), as determined by the district.

(b) Before providing a program under this section, the board of trustees of a school district must adopt a policy for:

(1) determining student eligibility for participating in the program that:

(A) prescribes the grade level or course a student must be enrolled in to be eligible; and

(B) provides for considering teacher recommendations in determining eligibility;

(2) ensuring that parents of or persons standing in parental relation to eligible students are provided notice of the program;

(3) ensuring that eligible students are encouraged to attend the program;

(4) ensuring that the program is offered at one or more locations in the district that are easily accessible to eligible students; and

(5) measuring student progress on completion of the program.

(c) The commissioner by rule shall:

(1) prescribe a procedure that a school district must follow to apply for and receive funding for a program under this section;

(2) adopt guidelines for determining which districts receive funding if there is not sufficient funding for each district that applies;

(3) require each district providing a program to report student performance results to the commissioner within the period and in the manner prescribed by the rule; and

(4) based on district reports under Subdivision (3) and any required analysis and verification of those reports, disseminate to each district in this state information concerning instructional methods that have proved successful in improving student performance in science.

(d) A program provided under this section shall be paid for with funds appropriated for that purpose.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 430, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Renumbered from Education Code, Section 29.089 by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 728 (H.B. 2018), Sec. 23.001(14-a), eff. September 1, 2005.

Sec. 29.091. GRANT PROGRAM FOR DISTRICTS THAT HAVE HIGH ENROLLMENT OF EDUCATIONALLY DISADVANTAGED STUDENTS AND THAT PROVIDE SUMMER INSTRUCTION. (a) In this section:

(1) "New teacher" means a teacher who:

(A) will be teaching for the first time during the next school year; or

(B) first began teaching:

(i) during the preceding two years; or

(ii) in the school district in which the teacher is currently employed during the preceding year.

(2) "Program" means the grant program for school districts to provide summer instruction primarily for students who are educationally disadvantaged, as established under this section.

(b) The commissioner shall establish and administer a competitive program to provide grants to not more than 10 school districts to use in providing instructional programs to students in prekindergarten through eighth grade during the period in which school is recessed for the summer. The program shall be designed to:

(1) encourage participation in the program by a district's most educationally disadvantaged students;

(2) close the academic achievement gap between students who are educationally disadvantaged and students who are not educationally disadvantaged;

(3) ensure that during the period in which school is recessed for the summer, students participating in the program retain knowledge and skills learned during the school year and continue learning;

(4) provide apprenticeship, mentorship, and other professional development opportunities for new teachers and student teachers; and

(5) add to the compensation of a district's highest performing teachers by providing those teachers with summer employment teaching students, new teachers, and student teachers.

(c) To be eligible to participate in the program, a school district must:

(1) have an enrollment of students who are educationally disadvantaged that is greater than 50 percent of total district enrollment;

(2) apply to the commissioner in the manner and within the time prescribed by commissioner rule; and

(3) provide as part of the application materials a plan that is designed to achieve the purposes described by Subsections (b)(1) through (5).

(d) In selecting from among eligible school districts to participate in the program, the commissioner shall select those districts that provide plans under Subsection (c)(3) that are the most innovative and represent a variety of approaches so that the effectiveness of various plans can be compared and evaluated.

(e) A grant awarded under this section may be funded only with money appropriated for the program and any gifts, grants, or donations made to the agency that may be used for and that the commissioner applies to funding the program. The commissioner, in accordance with commissioner rule and based on the amount available for the program, shall determine the amount of each grant awarded under this section. A school district awarded a grant under this section may use the grant only for implementing and administering a plan as described by Subsection (c)(3), including providing compensation to teachers in accordance with Subsection (b)(5) and commissioner rule.

(f) Each school district participating in the program shall, in the manner and within the time prescribed by commissioner rule, provide to the agency an annual written report that includes:

(1) a detailed description of the district's plan, as implemented;

(2) the number and grade levels of participating students;

(3) demographic information for participating students, including the percentage of students of each applicable race and ethnicity, the percentage of educationally disadvantaged students, the percentage of students of limited English proficiency as defined by Section 29.052, the percentage of students enrolled in a school district special education program under Subchapter A, and the percentage of students enrolled in a district bilingual education program under Subchapter B;

(4) school attendance rates for participating students, before, during, and after program participation, as applicable;

(5) specific information that demonstrates whether the purposes described by Subsections (b)(2) and (3) have been achieved, including the results of assessment instruments administered under Section 39.023 for participating students, before, during, and after program participation, as applicable;

(6) aggregate results of assessment instruments administered under Section 39.023 for students of participating classroom teachers, new teachers, and student teachers, before, during, and after program participation by the students, as applicable;

(7) information regarding the manner in which teachers are selected for participation in the program and the manner in which teachers are compensated for their participation;

(8) statistical information for participating classroom teachers, new teachers, and student teachers, including the number of years employed in the teaching profession, the number of years teaching in the district in which the program is provided, the category and class of educator certification held, the highest level of academic degree earned, race, ethnicity, and gender;

(9) information regarding whether:

(A) the program is provided on a full-day or half-day basis;

(B) the program is voluntary or mandatory for educationally disadvantaged students;

(C) the district has partnered with an outside provider to provide any supplemental service;

(D) the district provides transportation to participating students; and

(E) the district offers the program to students who are not educationally disadvantaged and, if so, under what circumstances;

(10) information on retention in the teaching profession of the participating teachers, including new teachers and student teachers; and

(11) any other information required by commissioner rule.

(g) The agency shall contract with an experienced and recognized third-party program evaluator to determine and prepare a report regarding the effectiveness of the program. The evaluator's report must include the evaluator's best effort to project the cost and academic effects of implementing the best practices of the program in school districts throughout this state and must describe the effectiveness of the program in:

(1) improving academic performance among participating students;

(2) improving the professional development and performance of new teachers; and

(3) rewarding and retaining the highest performing teachers.

(h) Not later than November 1 of each even-numbered year, the agency shall submit to each member of the legislature a report specifically describing the results of the program. The report may be in the form of a summary of the information required under Subsections (f) and (g).

(i) The commissioner shall adopt rules as necessary to administer this section.

Added by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1263 (H.B. 742), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2013.

Sec. 29.094. INTENSIVE READING OR LANGUAGE INTERVENTION PILOT PROGRAM. (a) In this section, "pilot program" means the intensive reading or language intervention pilot program.

(b) The commissioner by rule shall establish a pilot program in which a participating campus provides intensive reading or language intervention to participating students.

(c) A campus may apply to the commissioner to participate in the pilot program. The commissioner may select for participation in the pilot program only campuses that have failed to improve student performance in reading according to standards established by the commissioner. The standards established by the commissioner for purposes of this subsection must be based on reading performance standards considered for student promotion under Section 28.021.

(d) The commissioner shall adopt minimum criteria that a program must meet to be selected by a participating campus for use in providing intensive reading or language intervention. The criteria must include neuroscience-based, scientifically validated methods, scientifically based reading interventions, or instructional tools that have been proven to accelerate language acquisition and reading proficiency for struggling readers. A participating campus shall submit a summary of the campus's proposed intensive intervention program to the commissioner for approval. The commissioner may approve only a program that follows the minimum criteria adopted under this subsection.

(e) The principal of a participating campus, in consultation with classroom teachers at the campus, shall select students to participate in the pilot program based on assessment data. Benchmark measures shall be administered at the beginning and end of the program.

(f) Not later than December 31, 2008, any vendor of an intensive intervention program approved under Subsection (d), in consultation with the agency and each school district with which the vendor contracts under this section, shall provide the legislature with a report describing student progress under the assessments administered to participating students under Subsection (e).

(g) Notwithstanding any other law, the commissioner shall provide funding for the pilot program using not more than $6 million of funding appropriated for purposes of Section 28.0211.

(h) The commissioner shall adopt rules necessary to implement this section.

(i) The commissioner shall make the pilot program available to participating campuses during the 2007-2008 and 2008-2009 school years.

Added by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1165 (H.B. 3468), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2005.

Reenacted and amended by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1015 (H.B. 1270), Sec. 1, eff. June 15, 2007.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 895 (H.B. 3), Sec. 34, eff. June 19, 2009.

Sec. 29.095. GRANTS FOR STUDENT CLUBS. (a) In this section:

(1) "Council" means the High School Completion and Success Initiative Council established under Subchapter M, Chapter 39.

(2) "Student at risk of dropping out of school" has the meaning assigned by Section 29.081(d).

(b) The commissioner shall administer a pilot program to provide grants to school districts to fund student club activities for students at risk of dropping out of school. From funds appropriated for purposes of this subchapter, the commissioner shall spend an amount not to exceed $4 million in any state fiscal biennium on the program.

(c) The commissioner may award a grant in an amount not to exceed $5,000 in a school year to a school district on behalf of a student club at a district high school campus that is eligible under the criteria established under Section 39.408. To be eligible for a grant, the student club and the club's sponsor must be sanctioned by the campus and district. A grant awarded under this program must be matched by other federal, state, or local funds, including donations, in an amount equal to the amount of the grant. A district shall seek donations or sponsorships from local businesses or community organizations to raise the matching funds. The commissioner may award a grant on behalf of more than one student club at a campus in the same school year.

(d) The commissioner shall establish application criteria for receipt of a grant under this section. The criteria must require confirmation that the appropriate campus-level planning and decision-making committee established under Subchapter F, Chapter 11, and the school district board of trustees have approved a plan that includes:

(1) a description of the student club;

(2) a statement of the student club's goals, intent, and activities;

(3) a statement of the source of funds to be used to match the grant;

(4) a budget for the student club;

(5) a statement showing that the student club's finances are sustainable; and

(6) any other information the council requires.

(e) The commissioner shall establish the minimum requirements for a local grant agreement, including requiring:

(1) the agreement to be signed by the sponsor of a student club receiving a grant and another authorized school district officer; and

(2) the district and the student club to participate in an evaluation, as determined by the council, of the club's program and the program's effect on student achievement and dropout rates.

(f) A student club may use funds awarded under this section to support academic or co-curricular club activities, other than athletics, in which at least 50 percent of the participating students have been identified as students at risk of dropping out of school. A student club may use funds for materials, sponsor stipends, and other needs that directly support the club's activities. A student club must use the entire amount of the grant to directly fund the club's activities described in the plan approved as provided by Subsection (d). A student club may not use more than 50 percent of a grant to pay sponsor stipends.

(g) The school district board of trustees shall ensure that funds awarded under this section are expended in compliance with Subsection (f). At the end of the school year, a student club that receives a grant must submit a report to the board of trustees summarizing the club's activities and the extent to which the club met the club's goals and achieved the club's intent. The decision of the board of trustees under this subsection relating to compliance with Subsection (f) is final and may not be appealed.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1058 (H.B. 2237), Sec. 11, eff. June 15, 2007.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 895 (H.B. 3), Sec. 35, eff. June 19, 2009.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 895 (H.B. 3), Sec. 36, eff. June 19, 2009.

Sec. 29.096. COLLABORATIVE DROPOUT REDUCTION PILOT PROGRAM. (a) In this section, "council" means the High School Completion and Success Initiative Council established under Subchapter M, Chapter 39.

(b) Using funds appropriated for that purpose in an amount not to exceed $4 million each year, the commissioner shall establish a pilot program under which a school district or open-enrollment charter school may receive a grant to implement a local collaborative dropout reduction program.

(c) A school district or open-enrollment charter school is eligible to participate and receive a grant under this section under the eligibility criteria established under Section 39.408.

(d) The commissioner shall establish application criteria for receiving a grant under this section. The criteria must require a school district or open-enrollment charter school that applies for a grant to collaborate with local businesses, other local governments or law enforcement agencies, nonprofit organizations, faith-based organizations, and institutions of higher education to deliver proven, research-based intervention services. The goal of the program is to coordinate services and programs among local entities to:

(1) comprehensively reduce the number of students who drop out of school in that community; and

(2) increase the job skills, employment opportunities, and continuing education opportunities of students who might otherwise have dropped out of school.

(e) The commissioner shall establish minimum standards for a local collaborative agreement, including a requirement that the agreement must be signed by an authorized school district or open-enrollment charter school officer and an authorized representative of each of the other participating entities that is a partner in the collaboration. The program must:

(1) limit participation in the program to students authorized to participate by a parent or other person standing in parental relationship;

(2) have as a primary goal graduation from high school;

(3) provide for local businesses or other employers to offer paid employment or internship opportunities and advanced career and vocational training;

(4) include an outreach component and a lead educational staff member to identify and involve eligible students and public and private entities in participating in the program;

(5) serve a population of students of which at least 50 percent are identified as students at risk of dropping out of school, as described by Section 29.081(d);

(6) allocate not more than 15 percent of grant funds and matching funds, as determined by the commissioner, to administrative expenses;

(7) include matching funds from any of the participating entities; and

(8) include any other requirements as determined by the council.

(f) A local collaborative agreement under this section may:

(1) be coordinated with other services provided to students or their families by public or private entities;

(2) provide for local businesses to support the program, including:

(A) encouraging employees to engage in mentoring students and other school-related volunteer activities; and

(B) using matching funds to provide paid time off for volunteer activities under Paragraph (A) and other activities related to encouraging school involvement of parents of students enrolled in the program;

(3) allow grant funds to reimburse reasonable costs of participating entities;

(4) provide for electronic course delivery by a school district, an open-enrollment charter school, or an institution of higher education; and

(5) be hosted or housed by a chamber of commerce, local workforce agency, local employer, or other public or private participating entity.

(g) The commissioner may approve innovative instructional techniques for courses in the enrichment curriculum leading to high school graduation under a local collaborative dropout reduction program and shall develop accountability measures appropriate to those programs. From funds appropriated, the commissioner may fund electronic courses that are part of a collaborative program and that are otherwise eligible for state funds. Funding for an electronic course may not exceed the total amount of state and local funding for a student to which the school district or open-enrollment charter school would otherwise be entitled.

(h) Nothing in this section authorizes the award of a high school diploma other than in compliance with Section 28.025.

(i) The commissioner shall adopt rules necessary to administer the pilot program under this section.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1058 (H.B. 2237), Sec. 11, eff. June 15, 2007.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 895 (H.B. 3), Sec. 37, eff. June 19, 2009.

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 211 (H.B. 5), Sec. 21(a), eff. June 10, 2013.

Sec. 29.097. INTENSIVE TECHNOLOGY-BASED ACADEMIC INTERVENTION PILOT PROGRAM. (a) In this section:

(2) "Pilot program" means the intensive technology-based academic intervention pilot program.

(1) "Council" means the High School Completion and Success Initiative Council established under Subchapter M, Chapter 39.

(b) From funds appropriated for that purpose in an amount not to exceed $3 million each year, the commissioner shall establish a pilot program for the commissioner to award grants to participating campuses to provide intensive technology-based supplementary instruction in English, mathematics, science, or social studies to students in grades nine through 12 identified as being at risk of dropping out of school, as described by Section 29.081(d). Instruction techniques and technology used by a campus under this section must be based on the best available research, as determined by the council, regarding college and workforce readiness.

(c) The commissioner may select for participation in the pilot program only a campus that is eligible under the criteria established under Section 39.408.

(d) A program supported by a grant under this section to provide intensive technology-based supplementary instruction at a campus may:

(1) include comprehensive course plans and teacher guides that are aligned with one or more subjects of the foundation curriculum described by Section 28.002(a)(1);

(2) include technology-based supplementary instruction;

(3) include training, professional development, and mentoring for teachers;

(4) provide students individual access to technology-based supplementary instruction at least 90 minutes each week;

(5) demonstrate significant effectiveness in high schools serving students identified as being at risk of dropping out of school, as described by Section 29.081(d);

(6) be selected in consultation with the teachers at the affected campus; and

(7) be implemented in partnership with institutions of higher education.

(e) The primary purpose of a program supported by a grant under this section to provide intensive technology-based supplementary instruction at a campus is to benefit students identified as being at risk of dropping out of school, as described by Section 29.081(d), but grant funds may be used to benefit a campus-wide program if the use of the funds does not defeat the primary purpose provided by this subsection.

(f) A grant awarded under this section:

(1) may not exceed $50 for each participating student; and

(2) must be matched by other federal, state, or local funds, including private donations.

(g) For purposes of Subsection (f)(2), a school district is encouraged to use funds allocated under Section 42.160.

(h) A grant awarded under this section may not be used to replace federal, state, or local funds previously spent on an instructional program, but may be used to expand an existing program.

(i) The entire amount of a grant awarded under this section:

(1) must fund the program described in the application for the grant; and

(2) may be used for:

(A) supplementary instructional support systems;

(B) technology used primarily for the delivery of supplementary instruction;

(C) teacher training and professional development; and

(D) other necessary costs, as determined by the commissioner.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1058 (H.B. 2237), Sec. 11, eff. June 15, 2007.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 895 (H.B. 3), Sec. 38, eff. June 19, 2009.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 895 (H.B. 3), Sec. 39, eff. June 19, 2009.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1328 (H.B. 3646), Sec. 20, eff. September 1, 2009.

Sec. 29.098. INTENSIVE SUMMER PROGRAMS. (a) In this section, "pilot program" means the intensive summer pilot program for students identified as being at risk of dropping out of school or college.

(b) The commissioner shall establish a pilot program to award grants to participating campuses to provide intensive academic instruction during the period in which school is recessed for the summer to promote college and workforce readiness to students identified as being at risk of dropping out of school, as defined by Section 29.081. A grant awarded under this section may be used to fund any of the following categories of programs:

(1) a program administered by a school district in partnership with an institution of higher education to provide intensive academic instruction in English language arts, mathematics, and science to promote high school completion and college readiness; and

(2) a program administered by a school district in partnership with an institution of higher education to provide intensive academic instruction in reading and mathematics to students in grades six through eight to promote high school completion and college readiness.

(c) The commissioner may select for participation in the pilot program only a campus that is eligible under the criteria established under Section 39.408.

(d) A grant awarded under this section:

(1) may not exceed $750 for each participating student; and

(2) must be matched by not less than $250 for each participating student in other federal, state, or local funds, including private donations.

(e) For purposes of Subsection (d)(2), a school district is encouraged to use funds allocated under Section 42.160.

(f) A grant awarded under this section may not be used to replace federal, state, or local funds previously spent on a summer intensive program, but may be used to expand an existing program.

(g) The entire amount of a grant awarded under this section:

(1) must fund the program described in the application for the grant; and

(2) may be used for:

(A) instructional materials;

(B) technology used primarily for the delivery of supplementary instruction;

(C) teacher training and professional development, including educator stipends; and

(D) other necessary costs, as determined by the commissioner.

(h) Instructional materials adopted by the State Board of Education shall be used for instruction in a program under this section. The State Board of Education may adopt any additional instructional materials as necessary for a program under this section.

(i) The State Board of Education shall include information technology instructional resources that incorporate established best practices for instruction among approved instructional materials for intensive summer programs under this section to enhance the effectiveness of the programs.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1058 (H.B. 2237), Sec. 11, eff. June 15, 2007.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 851 (S.B. 2258), Sec. 1, eff. June 19, 2009.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 895 (H.B. 3), Sec. 40, eff. June 19, 2009.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1328 (H.B. 3646), Sec. 21, eff. September 1, 2009.

Sec. 29.099. INTENSIVE MATHEMATICS AND ALGEBRA INTERVENTION PILOT PROGRAM. (a) In this section, "intervention program" means the intensive mathematics and algebra intervention pilot program.

(b) The commissioner by rule shall establish an intervention pilot program in which a participating district will provide:

(1) intensive mathematics intervention for students who are not performing at grade level in mathematics in grades four through seven; and

(2) algebra readiness intervention for students who are not performing at grade level in mathematics in grade eight.

(c) Districts may implement the intensive mathematics and algebra intervention pilot program at a campus whose population of at-risk students exceeds the state average proportion of at-risk students.

(d) A participating campus shall identify a student who does not perform at grade level on an assessment instrument administered under Section 39.023(a)(1), or an equivalent assessment instrument administered under Section 39.023(l), as a student eligible for participation in the intervention program. During a student's placement in the intervention program, a campus shall use progress monitoring assessments to ensure that a student is making appropriate progress in the program.

(e) The commissioner shall adopt a list of mathematics and algebra intervention programs that may be implemented by a school district and funded under this program. Programs placed on the commissioner's list will be reviewed and recommended by a panel of recognized experts in mathematics education.

(f) The commissioner shall adopt minimum criteria that a program must meet to be included on the list adopted by the commissioner. The criteria must:

(1) include comprehensive course plans and teacher guides that are organized around the essential knowledge and skills curriculum for mathematics;

(2) include technology-based supplementary instruction that can diagnose and address areas in which a student is identified to need improvement;

(3) include at least three cumulative days of training, professional development, and mentoring for teachers;

(4) provide students individual access to technology-based supplementary instruction at least 90 minutes each week;

(5) provide teachers daily access to required technology;

(6) demonstrate significant effectiveness in schools serving students identified as being at risk of dropping out of school, as described by Section 29.081(d); and

(7) be selected in consultation with the teachers at the affected campus from the list adopted pursuant to Subsection (e).

(g) The commissioner shall adopt rules necessary to implement this section.

(h) Program Evaluation. The commissioner of education shall contract for the evaluation of the effectiveness of the intervention program established under this section. The commissioner may consider centers for education research to conduct this evaluation. The evaluation shall describe progress under the assessment instruments administered under Section 39.023(a)(1) or equivalent assessment instruments administered under Section 39.023(l) to students participating in the intervention program.

(i) Report to the Legislature. Not later than December 1 of each even-numbered year, the commissioner shall prepare and deliver a report to the legislature that recommends any statutory changes the commissioner considers appropriate to promote improved mathematics and algebra readiness in Texas schools.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 893 (H.B. 2504), Sec. 1, eff. June 15, 2007.

Renumbered from Education Code, Section 29.095 by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 87 (S.B. 1969), Sec. 27.001(5), eff. September 1, 2009.

SUBCHAPTER D. EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS FOR GIFTED AND TALENTED STUDENTS


Sec. 29.121. DEFINITION. In this subchapter, "gifted and talented student" means a child or youth who performs at or shows the potential for performing at a remarkably high level of accomplishment when compared to others of the same age, experience, or environment and who:

(1) exhibits high performance capability in an intellectual, creative, or artistic area;

(2) possesses an unusual capacity for leadership; or

(3) excels in a specific academic field.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.122. ESTABLISHMENT. Using criteria established by the State Board of Education, each school district shall adopt a process for identifying and serving gifted and talented students in the district and shall establish a program for those students in each grade level. A district may establish a shared services arrangement program with one or more other districts.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.123. STATE PLAN; ASSISTANCE. The State Board of Education shall develop and periodically update a state plan for the education of gifted and talented students to guide school districts in establishing and improving programs for identified students. The regional education service centers may assist districts in implementing the state plan. In addition to obtaining assistance from a regional education service center, a district may obtain other assistance in implementing the plan. The plan shall be used for accountability purposes to measure the performance of districts in providing services to students identified as gifted and talented.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

SUBCHAPTER E. KINDERGARTEN AND PREKINDERGARTEN PROGRAMS


Sec. 29.151. FREE KINDERGARTEN. The board of trustees of each school district shall establish and maintain one or more kindergartens for the training of children residing in the district who are at least five years of age on September 1 of the school year.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.152. OPERATION OF KINDERGARTENS ON HALF-DAY OR FULL-DAY BASIS. A public school kindergarten may be operated on a half-day or a full-day basis at the option of the board of trustees of the school district.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.153. FREE PREKINDERGARTEN FOR CERTAIN CHILDREN. (a) In this section:

(1) "Child" includes a stepchild.

(2) "Parent" includes a stepparent.

(a-1) A district shall offer prekindergarten classes if the district identifies 15 or more children who are eligible under Subsection (b) and are at least four years of age. A school district may offer prekindergarten classes if the district identifies 15 or more eligible children who are at least three years of age. A district may not charge tuition for a prekindergarten class offered under this section.

(b) A child is eligible for enrollment in a prekindergarten class under this section if the child is at least three years of age and:

(1) is unable to speak and comprehend the English language;

(2) is educationally disadvantaged;

(3) is a homeless child, as defined by 42 U.S.C. Section 11434a, regardless of the residence of the child, of either parent of the child, or of the child's guardian or other person having lawful control of the child;

(4) is the child of an active duty member of the armed forces of the United States, including the state military forces or a reserve component of the armed forces, who is ordered to active duty by proper authority;

(5) is the child of a member of the armed forces of the United States, including the state military forces or a reserve component of the armed forces, who was injured or killed while serving on active duty; or

(6) is or ever has been in the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services following an adversary hearing held as provided by Section 262.201, Family Code.

(c) A prekindergarten class under this section shall be operated on a half-day basis. A district is not required to provide transportation for a prekindergarten class, but transportation, if provided, is included for funding purposes as part of the regular transportation system.

(d) On application of a district, the commissioner may exempt a district from the application of this section if the district would be required to construct classroom facilities in order to provide prekindergarten classes.

(e) Each school district shall develop a system to notify the population in the district with children who are eligible for enrollment in a prekindergarten class under this section of the availability of the class. The system must include public notices issued in English and Spanish.

(f) A child who is eligible for enrollment in a prekindergarten class under Subsection (b)(4) or (5) remains eligible for enrollment if the child's parent leaves the armed forces, or is no longer on active duty, after the child begins a prekindergarten class.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 62, Sec. 4.01, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 596, Sec. 1, eff. June 11, 2001.

Amended by:

Acts 2006, 79th Leg., 3rd C.S., Ch. 5 (H.B. 1), Sec. 6.01, eff. May 31, 2006.

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 850 (H.B. 1137), Sec. 4, eff. June 15, 2007.

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1406 (S.B. 758), Sec. 1(a), eff. September 1, 2007.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 975 (H.B. 3643), Sec. 1, eff. June 19, 2009.

Sec. 29.1531. TUITION-SUPPORTED AND DISTRICT-FINANCED PREKINDERGARTEN. (a) A school district may offer on a tuition basis or use district funds to provide:

(1) an additional half-day of prekindergarten classes to children eligible for classes under Section 29.153; and

(2) half-day and full-day prekindergarten classes to children not eligible for classes under Section 29.153.

(b) A district that offers a prekindergarten program on a tuition basis:

(1) may not adopt a tuition rate for the program that is higher than necessary to cover the added costs of providing the program, including any costs associated with collecting, reporting, and analyzing data under Section 29.1532(c); and

(2) must submit the proposed tuition rate to the commissioner for approval.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 596, Sec. 1, eff. June 11, 2001.

Sec. 29.1532. PREKINDERGARTEN PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS. (a) A school district's prekindergarten program shall be designed to develop skills necessary for success in the regular public school curriculum, including language, mathematics, and social skills.

(b) If a school district contracts with a private entity for the operation of the district's prekindergarten program, the program must at a minimum comply with the applicable child-care licensing standards adopted by the Department of Protective and Regulatory Services under Section 42.042, Human Resources Code.

(c) A school district that offers prekindergarten classes shall include the following information in the district's Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS) report:

(1) demographic information, as determined by the commissioner, on students enrolled in district prekindergarten classes, including the number of students who are eligible for classes under Section 29.153;

(2) the numbers of half-day and full-day prekindergarten classes offered by the district; and

(3) the sources of funding for the prekindergarten classes.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 596, Sec. 1, eff. June 11, 2001.

Sec. 29.1533. ESTABLISHMENT OF NEW PREKINDERGARTEN PROGRAM. Before establishing a new prekindergarten program, a school district shall consider the possibility of sharing use of an existing Head Start or other child-care program site as a prekindergarten site.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 790, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Sec. 29.1534. NOTIFICATION OF PREKINDERGARTEN PROGRAMS. (a) In this section, "prekindergarten program" includes prekindergarten programs provided by a private entity through a partnership with the school district.

(b) The agency shall develop joint strategies with other state agencies regarding methods to increase community awareness of prekindergarten programs through programs that provide information relating to public assistance programs.

(c) The agency may develop outreach materials for use by school districts to increase community awareness of prekindergarten programs.

(d) Each school district shall report annually to the agency the strategies implemented by the school district to increase community awareness of prekindergarten programs offered by the district. The district shall report the information on a form prescribed by the commissioner. A report required by this subsection may be combined, at the discretion of the commissioner, with another report that the district submits to the agency. Not later than the 90th day after the date the agency receives a report from a school district as required by this subsection, the agency shall post the report on the agency's Internet website. This subsection expires September 1, 2013.

(e) The agency shall provide information to school districts regarding effective methods to communicate to the parent of an eligible child the availability of prekindergarten programs, including information regarding prekindergarten programs through public, private, and nonprofit institutions that provide assistance and support to families with children eligible for prekindergarten programs.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 592 (H.B. 136), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2009.

Sec. 29.154. EVALUATION OF PREKINDERGARTEN PROGRAMS. The commissioner of education, in consultation with the commissioner of human services, shall monitor and evaluate prekindergarten programs as to their developmental appropriateness. The commissioners shall also evaluate the potential for coordination on a statewide basis of prekindergarten programs with government-funded early childhood care and education programs such as child care administered under Chapter 44, Human Resources Code, and federal Head Start programs. That evaluation shall use recommendations contained in the report to the 71st Legislature required by Chapter 717, Acts of the 70th Legislature, Regular Session, 1987. For the purpose of providing cost-effective care for children during the full workday with developmentally appropriate curriculum, the commissioners shall investigate the use of existing child-care program sites as prekindergarten sites. Following the evaluation required by this section, the commissioners, in cooperation with school districts and other program administrators, shall integrate programs, staff, and program sites for prekindergarten, child-care, and federal Head Start programs to the greatest extent possible.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.155. KINDERGARTEN AND PREKINDERGARTEN GRANTS. (a) From amounts appropriated for the purposes of this section, the commissioner may make grants to school districts and open-enrollment charter schools to implement or expand kindergarten and prekindergarten programs by:

(1) operating an existing half-day kindergarten or prekindergarten program on a full-day basis; or

(2) implementing a prekindergarten program at a campus that does not have a prekindergarten program.

(b) A school district or open-enrollment charter school may use funds received under this section to employ teachers and other personnel for a kindergarten or prekindergarten program and acquire curriculum materials or equipment, including computers, for use in kindergarten and prekindergarten programs.

(c) To be eligible for a grant under this section, a school district or open-enrollment charter school must apply to the commissioner in the manner and within the time prescribed by the commissioner.

(d) In awarding grants under this section, the commissioner shall give priority to districts and open-enrollment charter schools in which the level of performance of students on the assessment instruments administered under Section 39.023 to students in grade three is substantially below the average level of performance on those assessment instruments for all school districts in the state.

(e) The commissioner may adopt rules to administer this section.

(f) Notwithstanding Section 7.056(e)(3)(I), the commissioner may waive a requirement prescribed by this subchapter to the extent necessary to implement a grant awarded under this section or Section 29.156.

(g) From amounts appropriated for the purposes of this subsection, the commissioner may also provide for:

(1) coordinating early childhood care and education programs;

(2) developing and disseminating for programs described by Subdivision (1) prekindergarten instructional materials and school-readiness information for parents; and

(3) developing standards for model early childhood care and education coordination.

(h) The model program standards developed under Subsection (g) must focus on pre-literacy skills, including language acquisition, vocabulary development, and phonological awareness.

(i) In carrying out the purposes of Subsection (g), a school district or open-enrollment charter school may use funds granted to the district or school under this subsection in contracting with another entity, including a private entity.

(j) If a school district or open-enrollment charter school returns to the commissioner funds granted under this section, the commissioner may grant those funds to another entity, including a private entity, for the purposes of Subsection (g).

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 396, Sec. 2.01, eff. Sept. 1, 1999. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 790, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Sec. 29.156. GRANTS FOR EDUCATIONAL COMPONENT OF HEAD START. (a) From funds appropriated for the purpose, the commissioner shall make grants for use in providing an educational component to federal Head Start programs or similar government-funded early childhood care and education programs.

(b) The commissioner shall adopt rules for implementation of this section, including rules prescribing eligibility criteria for receipt of a grant and for expenditure of grant funds.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 396, Sec. 2.01, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.

Sec. 29.1561. ADMINISTRATION OF EARLY CHILDHOOD CARE AND EDUCATION PROGRAMS. (a) The commissioner may waive a law or rule relating to early childhood care and education programs:

(1) to the extent that the law or rule is more restrictive than required by federal law; or

(2) to the extent necessary to comply with federal law.

(b) Notwithstanding any restriction imposed by this title, the commissioner may administer grants for early childhood care and education programs under Section 29.155 or 29.156, including Head Start and Early Head Start programs, in a manner that provides the greatest flexibility allowed under federal law.

(c) The commissioner by rule may establish a program to provide incentives to providers of early childhood care and education programs that, to the greatest extent practicable, provide coordinated services authorized under Section 29.158(c).

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 790, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 275 (S.B. 23), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2005.

Sec. 29.157. READY TO READ GRANTS. (a) From funds appropriated for the purpose, the commissioner shall make grants as provided by this section in support of pre-reading instruction.

(b) The commissioner shall establish a competitive grant program for distribution of at least 95 percent of the available appropriated funds. Grants shall be used to provide scientific, research-based pre-reading instruction for the purpose of directly improving pre-reading skills and for identifying cost-effective models for pre-reading intervention. The commissioner shall distribute the grants in amounts not less than $50,000 or more than $150,000 to eligible applicants to be used for:

(1) professional staff development in pre-reading instruction;

(2) pre-reading curriculum and materials;

(3) pre-reading skills assessment materials; and

(4) employment of pre-reading instructors.

(c) A public school operating a prekindergarten program, or an eligible entity as defined by Section 12.101(a) that provides a preschool instruction program and that meets qualifications prescribed by the commissioner, is eligible to apply for a grant if at least 75 percent of the children enrolled in the program are low-income students, as determined by rule of the commissioner.

(d) As a condition to receiving a grant, an applicant must commit public or private funds matching the grant in a percentage set by the commissioner. The commissioner shall determine the required percentage of matching funds based on the demonstrated economic capacity of the community served by the program to raise funds for the purpose of matching the grant, as determined by the commissioner. Matching funds must equal at least 30 percent, but not more than 75 percent, of the amount of the grant.

(e) The commissioner shall develop and implement performance measures for evaluating the effectiveness of grants under this section. Those measures must correlate to other reading diagnostic assessments used in public schools in kindergarten through the second grade.

(f) The commissioner may adopt rules as necessary for the administration of this section.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 402, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1999. Renumbered from Sec. 29.155 by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1420, Sec. 21.001(17), eff. Sept. 1, 2001.

Sec. 29.158. COORDINATION OF SERVICES. (a) In a manner consistent with federal law and regulations, each prekindergarten program provider, Head Start and Early Head Start program provider, and provider of an after-school child-care program provided at a school shall coordinate with the agency, the Texas Workforce Commission, and local workforce development boards regarding subsidized child-care services.

(b) The coordination required by this section must include:

(1) providing to an applicant for a child-care service information regarding:

(A) child-care resource and referral agencies serving the applicant's community;

(B) information and referral providers serving the applicant's community; or

(C) the prekindergarten program, local child-care and development fund contractor, or Head Start program administrator serving the applicant's community; and

(2) coordinating to ensure, to the extent practicable, that full-day, full-year child-care services are available to meet the needs of low-income parents who are working or participating in workforce training or workforce education.

(c) The coordination required by this section may also include:

(1) cooperating with each state agency regarding child-care or child-development studies conducted by that agency;

(2) collecting data necessary to determine a child's eligibility for subsidized child-care services or a prekindergarten, Head Start or Early Head Start, or after-school child-care program, to the extent that the collection of data does not violate the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (20 U.S.C. Section 1232g);

(3) cooperating to provide for staff training and professional development activities;

(4) identifying and developing methods for the collaborative provision of subsidized child-care services and prekindergarten, Head Start or Early Head Start, or after-school child-care program services, including:

(A) operating a combined system for eligibility determination or registration processes so that an applicant may apply for all services available in an applicant's community through a single point of access;

(B) sharing facilities or staff; and

(C) increasing the enrollment capacity of those programs;

(5) identifying child-care facilities located in close proximity to prekindergarten, Head Start or Early Head Start, or after-school child-care programs;

(6) coordinating transportation between child-care facilities identified under Subdivision (5) and a prekindergarten, Head Start or Early Head Start, or after-school child-care program; and

(7) coordinating with the State Center for Early Childhood Development to develop longitudinal studies to measure the effects of quality early childhood care and education programs on educational achievement, including high school performance and completion.

(d) In coordinating child-care services under this section and in making any related decision to contract with another provider for child-care services, the agency, Texas Workforce Commission, local workforce development boards, and each prekindergarten program provider, Head Start and Early Head Start program provider, and provider of an after-school child-care program provided at a school shall consider the quality of the services involved in the proposed coordination or contracting decision and shall give preference to services of the highest quality. Any appropriate indicator of quality services may be considered under this subsection, including whether the provider of the services:

(1) meets Texas Rising Star Program certification criteria;

(2) is accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting organization approved by the Texas Workforce Commission and the Department of Family and Protective Services;

(3) meets standards developed by the State Center for Early Childhood Development; or

(4) has achieved any other measurable target relevant to improving the quality of child care in this state.

(e) Any coordination required by this section that involves a prekindergarten program must be approved by the commissioner.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 790, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 241 (H.B. 376), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2013.

Sec. 29.159. PROVISION OF CERTAIN INFORMATION. (a) Except as otherwise provided by this section, each provider of government-funded child-care services shall, at the time that a child is enrolled with the provider, furnish to the child's parent information regarding:

(1) effective early education settings; and

(2) any indicators that a child is ready for kindergarten that have been developed at the time the child is enrolled.

(b) If a provider does not have sufficient resources to provide the information specified by Subsection (a), the provider shall:

(1) furnish the parent with the appropriate telephone numbers or Internet sites through which the parent may obtain the information; or

(2) refer the parent to a local child-care resource and referral agency.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 790, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Sec. 29.160. DEMONSTRATION PROJECTS. (a) The State Center for Early Childhood Development, in conjunction with a school district, regional education service center, institution of higher education, local government, local workforce development board, or community organization, may develop a quality rating system demonstration project under which prekindergarten program providers, licensed child-care facilities, or Head Start and Early Head Start program providers are assessed under a quality rating system.

(b) In developing the quality rating system demonstration project, the State Center for Early Childhood Development is entitled to:

(1) reasonable access to the sites at which the programs to be rated are operated, which may include sites under the authority of school districts or the Department of Protective and Regulatory Services; and

(2) technical assistance and support from the agency, the Texas Workforce Commission, and the Department of Protective and Regulatory Services to the extent that those agencies have the ability to provide assistance and support using existing agency resources.

(c) A school district, regional education service center, institution of higher education, local government, local workforce development board, or community organization may develop one or more coordination-of-resources demonstration projects under which government-funded child-care and early education services, including Head Start and Early Head Start, prekindergarten, and after-school child-care program services, child-care services provided by nonprofit or for-profit entities, and faith-based child-care programs, are operated in a coordinated and integrated manner. An entity that develops a proposed demonstration project under this subsection must obtain approval of the project from the state agency or agencies with regulatory jurisdiction over the subject matter involved in the project. Approval of a project under this subsection must be made contingent on development of a memorandum of understanding regarding the child-care and early education coordination and integration that is:

(1) entered into by each entity participating in the project;

(2) certified by the State Center for Early Childhood Development as meeting any standards developed under Section 29.155(g); and

(3) consistent with the applicable provisions of this section and applicable laws and regulations in a manner that at a minimum maintains existing child-care and early education program requirements and does not waive any existing health and safety standards.

(c-1) The memorandum of understanding required under Subsection (c) shall provide for:

(1) equal decision-making authority for entities participating in the project;

(2) uniform eligibility criteria for the project to the extent authorized by state and federal law;

(3) development of streamlined enrollment procedures and simplified forms for children eligible for services under the project;

(4) strategies for the colocation and management of staff and for facilitation of effective communication among staff members;

(5) alignment and coordination of program calendars;

(6) delineation of responsibilities for the provision of instructional supplies and materials and food services;

(7) development and implementation of a system by which eligible children are referred for services among the participating entities in a manner that complies with applicable laws and regulations;

(8) periodic meetings of the participating entities to address concerns relating to the administration and operation of the project; and

(9) periodic meetings of the participating entities to address common standards for the professional development of program staff and to create opportunities to ensure that local communities have effective program staff.

(c-2) A demonstration project established under Subsection (c) must include a program evaluation component that, in addition to assessing child-care and early education outcomes for young children, demonstrates:

(1) the extent to which program quality has been enhanced;

(2) the extent to which the number of children being served by full-day, full-year programs has increased;

(3) the extent to which professional development training or activities engaged in by program staff has increased; and

(4) that there has been no weakening of standards or diminishment of services.

(d) An entity that obtains approval of a coordination-of-resources demonstration project is entitled to a waiver or modification of any existing rule, policy, or procedure of the agency, the Texas Workforce Commission, or the Department of Protective and Regulatory Services that impairs the coordinated provision of government-funded child-care services, provided that the waiver or modification does not adversely affect the health, safety, or welfare of the children receiving services under the project. In addition, if applicable, the appropriate state agency must seek on behalf of the entity any available federal waiver from a federal rule, policy, or procedure imposed in connection with a Head Start program that impairs the coordinated provision of government-funded child-care services. Not later than the 30th day after the date on which a state agency becomes aware of an applicable federal waiver under this subsection, the state agency shall notify the appropriate entity of the date by which the state agency intends to seek the waiver.

(e) Repealed by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1312, Sec. 99(2), eff. September 1, 2013.

(f) Repealed by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1312, Sec. 99(2), eff. September 1, 2013.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 790, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 275 (S.B. 23), Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2005.

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1312 (S.B. 59), Sec. 99(2), eff. September 1, 2013.

Sec. 29.161. SCHOOL READINESS CERTIFICATION SYSTEM. (a) The State Center for Early Childhood Development, in conjunction with the P-16 Council established under Section 61.076, shall develop and adopt a school readiness certification system for use in certifying the effectiveness of prekindergarten programs, Head Start and Early Head Start programs, government-subsidized child-care programs provided by nonprofit or for-profit entities, government-subsidized faith-based child-care programs, and other government-subsidized child-care programs in preparing children for kindergarten. The system shall be made available on a voluntary basis to program providers seeking to obtain certification as evidence of the quality of the program provided.

(b) In developing and adopting the system, the center shall seek the active participation of all interested stakeholders, including parents and program providers.

(c) The system must:

(1) be reflective of research in the field of early childhood care and education;

(2) be well-grounded in the cognitive, social, and emotional development of young children;

(3) apply a common set of criteria to each program provider seeking certification, regardless of the type of program or source of program funding; and

(4) be capable of fulfilling the reporting and notice requirements of Sections 28.006(d) and (g).

(d) The agency shall collect each student's raw score results on the reading instrument administered under Section 28.006 from each school district using the system created under Subsection (a) and shall contract with the State Center for Early Childhood Development for purposes of this section.

(e) The State Center for Early Childhood Development shall, using funds appropriated for the school readiness certification system, provide the system created under Subsection (a) to each school district to report each student's raw score results on the reading instrument administered under Section 28.006.

(f) The agency shall:

(1) provide assistance to the State Center for Early Childhood Development in developing and adopting the school readiness certification system under this section, including providing access to data for the purpose of locating the teacher and campus of record for students; and

(2) require confidentiality and other security measures for student data provided to the State Center for Early Childhood Development as the agency's agent, consistent with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (20 U.S.C. Section 1232g).

Added by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 275 (S.B. 23), Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2005.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 921 (H.B. 3167), Sec. 4.005, eff. September 1, 2007.

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1340 (S.B. 1871), Sec. 3, eff. June 15, 2007.

SUBCHAPTER F. CAREER AND TECHNOLOGY EDUCATION PROGRAM


Sec. 29.181. PUBLIC EDUCATION CAREER AND TECHNOLOGY EDUCATION GOALS. Each public school student shall master the basic skills and knowledge necessary for:

(1) managing the dual roles of family member and wage earner; and

(2) gaining entry-level employment in a high-skill, high-wage job or continuing the student's education at the postsecondary level.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.182. STATE PLAN FOR CAREER AND TECHNOLOGY EDUCATION. (a) The agency shall prepare and biennially update a state plan for career and technology education that sets forth objectives for career and technology education for the next biennium and long-term goals for the following five years.

(b) The state plan must include procedures designed to ensure that:

(1) all secondary and postsecondary students have the opportunity to participate in career and technology education programs;

(2) the state complies with requirements for supplemental federal career and technology education funding;

(3) career and technology education is established as a part of the total education system of this state and constitutes an option for student learning that provides a rigorous course of study consistent with the required curriculum under Section 28.002 and under which a student may receive specific education in a career and technology program that:

(A) incorporates competencies leading to academic and technical skill attainment;

(B) leads to:

(i) an industry-recognized license, credential, or certificate; or

(ii) at the postsecondary level, an associate or baccalaureate degree;

(C) includes opportunities for students to earn college credit for coursework; and

(D) includes, as an integral part of the program, participation by students and teachers in activities of career and technical student organizations supported by the agency and the State Board of Education; and

(4) a school district provides, to the greatest extent possible, to a student participating in a career and technology education program opportunities to enroll in dual credit courses designed to lead to a degree, license, or certification as part of the program.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 895 (H.B. 3), Sec. 41, eff. June 19, 2009.

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 211 (H.B. 5), Sec. 22, eff. June 10, 2013.

Sec. 29.183. CAREER AND TECHNOLOGY AND OTHER EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS. (a) The board of trustees of a school district may conduct and supervise career and technology classes and other educational programs for students and for other persons of all ages and spend local maintenance funds for the cost of those classes and programs.

(b) In developing a career and technology program, the board of trustees shall consider the state plan for career and technology education required under Section 29.182.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.184. CONTRACTS WITH OTHER SCHOOLS FOR CAREER AND TECHNOLOGY CLASSES. (a) The board of trustees of a school district may contract with another school district or with a public or private postsecondary educational institution or trade or technical school that is regulated by this state, as designated in the state plan for career and technology education required under Section 29.182, to provide career and technology classes for students in the district.

(b) A student who attends career and technology classes at another school under a contract authorized by Subsection (a) is included in the average daily attendance of the district in which the student is regularly enrolled.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.185. CAREER AND TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS AND PROCEDURES. (a) The agency shall prescribe requirements for career and technology education in public schools as necessary to comply with federal law.

(b) The agency shall establish procedures for each school district and open-enrollment charter school to:

(1) accurately identify students who are enrolled in a tech-prep program as described by Section 61.852; and

(2) report the accurate number of tech-prep program students to the agency and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Amended by:

Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 446 (S.B. 1410), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2011.

Sec. 29.187. AWARD FOR DISTINGUISHED ACHIEVEMENT IN CAREER AND TECHNOLOGY EDUCATION; PROGRAM. (a) In addition to the authority granted under Section 29.183, the board of trustees of a school district may develop and offer a program that provides a rigorous course of study consistent with the required curriculum under Section 28.002 and under which a student may:

(1) receive specific education in a career and technology profession that:

(A) leads to postsecondary education; or

(B) meets or exceeds business or industry standards; and

(2) obtain from the district an award for distinguished achievement in career and technology education and a stamp or other notation on the student's transcript that indicates receipt of the award.

(b) An award granted under this section is not in lieu of a diploma or certificate of coursework completion issued under Section 28.025.

(c) In developing a program under this section, the board of trustees of a school district shall consider the state plan for career and technology education required under Section 29.182.

(d) The board of trustees of a school district may contract with an entity listed in Section 29.184(a) for assistance in developing the program or providing instruction to district students participating in the program.

(e) The board of trustees of a school district may also contract with a local business or a local institution of higher education for assistance in developing or operating a program under this section. A program may provide education in areas of technology unique to the local area.

(f) The board of trustees of a school district may provide insurance to protect a business that contracts with the district under Subsection (e) against liability for a bodily injury sustained by or the death of a district student while working for the business as part of a program established under this section. The board shall notify the parent or guardian of each student working for a business if the board provides insurance to the business under this subsection. The amount of insurance the district provides must be reasonable considering the financial condition of the district. The insurance must be:

(1) obtained from a reliable insurer authorized to engage in business in the state; and

(2) submitted on a form approved by the commissioner of insurance.

(g) If a business that contracts with a district under Subsection (e) obtains any insurance related to the student other than liability insurance, any proceeds of the insurance must be used for the benefit of the student and the student's family.

(h) The board of trustees of a school district must submit a proposed program under this section to the commissioner of education in accordance with criteria established by the commissioner.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 61, Sec. 3, eff. May 16, 2003.

Sec. 29.188. RECOGNITION OF SUCCESSFUL CAREER AND TECHNOLOGY EDUCATION PROGRAM. The governor is encouraged to present a proclamation or certificate to each member of the business and industry community that the Texas Workforce Commission, in cooperation with the agency, determines has successfully assisted in the provision of a career and technology education program under this subchapter.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 61, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Sec. 29.190. SUBSIDY FOR CERTIFICATION EXAMINATION.

(a) A student is entitled to a subsidy under this section if:

(1) the student:

(A) successfully completes the career and technology program of a school district in which the student receives training and instruction for employment; or

(B) is enrolled in a special education program under Subchapter A; and

(2) the student passes a certification examination to qualify for a license or certificate.

(b) Repealed by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 211, Sec. 78(a)(1), eff. September 1, 2013.

(c) On approval by the commissioner, the agency shall pay each school district an amount equal to the cost paid by the district for the certification examination. To obtain reimbursement for a subsidy paid under this section, a district must:

(1) pay the fee for the examination; and

(2) submit to the commissioner a written application on a form prescribed by the commissioner stating the amount of the fee paid under Subdivision (1) for the certification examination.

(d) Repealed by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 211, Sec. 78(a)(1), eff. September 1, 2013.

(e) Repealed by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 211, Sec. 78(a)(1), eff. September 1, 2013.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1225 (H.B. 2383), Sec. 1, eff. June 15, 2007.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1328 (H.B. 3646), Sec. 22, eff. September 1, 2009.

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 211 (H.B. 5), Sec. 23(a), eff. June 10, 2013.

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 211 (H.B. 5), Sec. 78(a)(1), eff. September 1, 2013.

SUBCHAPTER G. PUBLIC EDUCATION GRANT PROGRAM


Sec. 29.201. PARENTAL CHOICE. Notwithstanding any other provision of this code, as provided by this subchapter an eligible student may attend a public school in the district in which the student resides or may use a public education grant to attend any other district chosen by the student's parent.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.202. ELIGIBILITY. (a) A student is eligible to receive a public education grant or to attend another public school in the district in which the student resides under this subchapter if the student is assigned to attend a public school campus:

(1) at which 50 percent or more of the students did not perform satisfactorily on an assessment instrument administered under Section 39.023(a) or (c) in any two of the preceding three years; or

(2) that, at any time in the preceding three years, failed to satisfy any standard under Section 39.054(e).

(b) After a student has used a public education grant to attend a school in a district other than the district in which the student resides:

(1) the student does not become ineligible for the grant if the school on which the student's initial eligibility is based no longer meets the criteria under Subsection (a); and

(2) the student becomes ineligible for the grant if the student is assigned to attend a school that does not meet the criteria under Subsection (a).

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 722, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1997; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 767, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1997; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 342, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2006, 79th Leg., 3rd C.S., Ch. 5 (H.B. 1), Sec. 3.08, eff. May 31, 2006.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 895 (H.B. 3), Sec. 42, eff. June 19, 2009.

Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 91 (S.B. 1303), Sec. 7.007, eff. September 1, 2011.

Sec. 29.203. FINANCING. (a) A student who under this subchapter uses a public education grant to attend a public school in a school district other than the district in which the student resides is included in the average daily attendance of the district in which the student attends school.

(b) A school district is entitled to the allotment provided by Section 42.157 for each eligible student using a public education grant. If the district has a wealth per student greater than the guaranteed wealth level but less than the equalized wealth level, a school district is entitled under rules adopted by the commissioner to additional state aid in an amount equal to the difference between the cost to the district of providing services to a student using a public education grant and the sum of the state aid received because of the allotment under Section 42.157 and money from the available school fund attributable to the student.

(c) A school district is entitled to additional facilities assistance under Section 42.4101 if the district agrees to:

(1) accept a number of students using public education grants that is at least one percent of the district's average daily attendance for the preceding school year; and

(2) provide services to each student until the student either voluntarily decides to attend a school in a different district or graduates from high school.

(d) A school district chosen by a student's parent under Section 29.201 is entitled to accept or reject the application for the student to attend school in that district but may not use criteria that discriminate on the basis of a student's race, ethnicity, academic achievement, athletic abilities, language proficiency, sex, or socioeconomic status. A school district that has more acceptable applicants for attendance under this subchapter than available positions must give priority to students at risk of dropping out of school as defined by Section 29.081 and must fill the available positions by lottery. However, to achieve continuity in education, a school district may give preference over at-risk students to enrolled students and to the siblings of enrolled students residing in the same household or other children residing in the same household as enrolled students for the convenience of parents, guardians, or custodians of those children.

(e) A school district chosen by a student's parent under Section 29.201 may not charge the student tuition.

(f) The school district in which a student resides shall provide each student attending a school in another district under this subchapter transportation free of charge to and from the school the student would otherwise attend.

(g) In this section:

(1) "Equalized wealth level" has the meaning assigned by Section 41.001.

(2) "Guaranteed wealth level" means a wealth per student equal to the dollar amount guaranteed level of state and local funds per weighted student per cent of tax effort, as provided by Section 42.302, multiplied by 10,000.

(3) "Wealth per student" has the meaning assigned by Section 41.001.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 722, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.

Sec. 29.204. NOTIFICATION. (a) Not later than January 1 of each year the commissioner shall, based on the most recent information available, provide notice to each school district in which a campus described by Section 29.202 is located that:

(1) identifies each campus in the district that meets the description in Section 29.202; and

(2) informs the district that the district must comply with Subsection (b).

(b) Not later than February 1 of each year, a school district shall notify the parent of each student in the district assigned to attend a campus described by Section 29.202 that the student is eligible for a public education grant. The notice must contain a clear, concise explanation of the public education grant program and of the manner in which the parent may obtain further information about the program.

Added by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 722, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.

Sec. 29.205. CONTRACT AUTHORITY. The board of trustees of a school district may contract under Section 11.157 for the provision of educational services to a district student eligible to receive a public education grant under Section 29.202.

Added by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 722, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.

SUBCHAPTER H. COMMUNITY


EDUCATION PROGRAMS


Sec. 29.251. DEFINITIONS. In this subchapter:

(1) Repealed by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 73, Sec. 2.06(a)(2), eff. September 1, 2013.

(2) Repealed by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 73, Sec. 2.06(a)(2), eff. September 1, 2013.

(3) Repealed by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 73, Sec. 2.06(a)(2), eff. September 1, 2013.

(4) "Community education" means the process by which the citizens in a school district, using the resources and facilities of the district, organize to support each other and to solve their mutual educational problems and meet their mutual lifelong needs. Community education may include:

(A) educational programs, including programs relating to cultural awareness, parenting skills education and parental involvement in school programs, and multilevel adult education and personal growth;

(B) community involvement programs, including programs for community economic development, school volunteers, partnerships between schools and businesses, coordination with community agencies, school-age child care, family literacy, and community use of facilities; and

(C) programs for youth enrolled in schools, including programs for dropout prevention and recovery programs, drug-free school programs, school-age parenting programs, and academic enhancement.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Amended by:

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 73 (S.B. 307), Sec. 2.03, eff. September 1, 2013.

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 73 (S.B. 307), Sec. 2.06(a)(2), eff. September 1, 2013.

Sec. 29.252. AGENCY ROLE IN COMMUNITY EDUCATION. (a) The agency shall:

(1) develop, implement, and regulate a comprehensive statewide program for community education services;

(2) administer all state and federal funds for community education in this state, other than funds that another entity is specifically authorized to administer under other law; and

(3) accept and administer grants, gifts, services, and funds from available sources for use in community education.

(b) The agency may adopt rules for the administration of this subchapter.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 761, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1997; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 817, Sec. 5.03, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 73 (S.B. 307), Sec. 2.04, eff. September 1, 2013.

Sec. 29.255. STATE FUNDING. Funds shall be appropriated to implement statewide community education programs, including pilot programs to demonstrate the effectiveness of the community education concept. The agency shall ensure that public local education agencies, public nonprofit agencies, and community-based organizations have direct and equitable access to those funds.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Amended by:

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 73 (S.B. 307), Sec. 2.05, eff. September 1, 2013.

Sec. 29.256. REIMBURSEMENT FOR COMMUNITY EDUCATION SERVICES. (a) A school district whose governing board elects to provide community education for all age groups may on application and according to rules adopted by the agency be reimbursed for those costs from state funds to the extent authorized by this section.

(b) Only a district that has in the preceding or current year achieved a level of community education services prescribed by the agency is eligible for reimbursement under this section. The agency's rules must contain specific provisions for eligibility and program operation.

(c) The cost to the state shall be paid from the foundation school fund.

(d) The legislature in the General Appropriations Act shall set a limit on the amount of funds that may be expended under this section each year.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1071, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.

Sec. 29.257. COMMUNITY EDUCATION DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS. (a) The legislature may appropriate money from the foundation school fund to the agency for developing and implementing community education projects. The agency shall actively seek gifts, grants, or other donations for purposes related to community education development projects, unless the acceptance is prohibited by other law. Money received under this subsection shall be deposited in the account established under Subsection (b) and may be appropriated only for the purpose for which the money was given.

(b) The community education development account is created as a dedicated account in the foundation school fund in the state treasury. The account shall consist of community education related gifts, grants, and donations and shall be administered by the agency.

(c) Subject to legislative appropriation and except as provided by Subsection (g), a school district to which the agency awards money for a community education development project is entitled to receive money for a period of three years. After that period, a project must be funded wholly from local sources. State funding under this section may not exceed:

(1) $50,000 for the first year of a project;

(2) $35,000 for the second year of a project; or

(3) $20,000 for the third year of a project.

(d) The State Board of Education by rule shall establish procedures for distributing community education development money to school districts. The procedures must include a statewide competitive process by which the agency, in accordance with procedures adopted by board rule, evaluates applications for community education development money and awards money to the districts whose projects the agency determines have the greatest merit. A school district may seek review of an agency determination regarding the award of money only in accordance with an administrative review process adopted by board rule. A school district may not seek judicial review of an agency determination.

(e) An application for funding under this section must include:

(1) a resolution adopted by the board of trustees of the school district adopting a particular community education development project plan;

(2) in accordance with rules adopted by the State Board of Education, a description of:

(A) the objectives of the proposed project, including, if appropriate, quantitative targets for the objectives; and

(B) the particular means by which the objectives are to be achieved;

(3) the estimated funding requirements and the data or analysis used to prepare the estimate;

(4) a statement outlining the manner in which the proposed project achieves goals for community education and complies with the requirements of this section;

(5) a statement of the manner in which the project is to be funded after the third year;

(6) a provision for a survey of community education needs in the district that:

(A) incorporates the objectives of community education;

(B) is completed and analyzed by the district in the first year of the project; and

(C) adheres to statistical techniques recognized as valid by professional statisticians;

(7) a provision for the maximum efficient use of existing school facilities in the first year of the project;

(8) a provision for the establishment of an advisory committee of at least 15 members who:

(A) are selected without regard to race or sex;

(B) are selected to reflect persons from the local business community, governmental agencies, public and private nonprofit educational interests, parents, and the general public; and

(C) serve without compensation; and

(9) a designation of a district community education administrator whose primary responsibility is the implementation and supervision of the community education program.

(f) The agency shall monitor each project awarded money under this section in accordance with rules adopted by the State Board of Education. The agency shall evaluate whether the project has satisfactorily carried out the district's objectives as set out in the community education project plan. The board by rule may provide a process for amending the plan.

(g) A school district is not entitled to funding for any year of a project for which:

(1) the district did not apply for funding; or

(2) the agency suspends the funding based on the agency's determination that the district has failed to satisfactorily implement the project's objectives.

(h) The State Board of Education by rule shall provide for an administrative process for the suspension of funding under Subsection (g)(2). The rules must be consistent with Chapter 2001, Government Code.

(i) The State Board of Education may adopt rules necessary to implement and enforce this section, including rules relating to financial audits of school districts that receive money under this section. Rules adopted under this section by the State Board of Education may not permit the board or the agency to waive any provision of this section.

(j) The agency may not use more than five percent of the funds appropriated for the projects under this section for the agency's administration of this section.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995. Amended by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1071, Sec. 5, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.

Sec. 29.259. ADULT HIGH SCHOOL DIPLOMA AND INDUSTRY CERTIFICATION CHARTER SCHOOL PILOT PROGRAM. (a) In this section, "adult education" means services and instruction provided below the college level for adults by a nonprofit entity described by Subsection (e).

(b) The commissioner shall establish an adult high school diploma and industry certification charter school pilot program as provided by this section as a strategy for meeting industry needs for a sufficiently trained workforce within the state.

(c) The agency shall adopt and administer a standardized secondary exit-level assessment instrument appropriate for assessing adult education program participants who successfully complete high school curriculum requirements under a program provided under this section. The commissioner shall determine the level of performance considered to be satisfactory on the secondary exit-level assessment instrument for receipt of a high school diploma by an adult education program participant in a program provided under this section.

(d) Notwithstanding any other law and in addition to the number of charters allowed under Subchapter D, Chapter 12, a charter under the pilot program may, on the basis of an application submitted, be granted to a single nonprofit entity described by Subsection (e) to provide an adult education program for not more than 150 individuals described by Subsection (g) to successfully complete:

(1) a high school program that can lead to a diploma; and

(2) career and technology education courses that can lead to industry certification.

(e) A nonprofit entity may be granted a charter under this section only if the entity:

(1) has a successful history of providing education services, including industry certifications and job placement services, to adults 18 years of age and older whose educational and training opportunities have been limited by educational disadvantages, disabilities, homelessness, criminal history, or similar circumstances; and

(2) agrees to commit at least $1 million to the adult education program offered.

(f) A nonprofit entity granted a charter under this section may partner with a public junior college to provide career and technology courses that lead to industry certification.

(g) A person who is at least 19 years of age and not more than 50 years of age is eligible to enroll in the adult education program under this section if the person has not earned a high school equivalency certificate and:

(1) has failed to complete the curriculum requirements for high school graduation; or

(2) has failed to perform satisfactorily on an assessment instrument required for high school graduation.

(h) The nonprofit entity must include in its charter application the information required by Subsection (i).

(i) A charter granted under this section must:

(1) include a description of the adult education program to be offered under this section; and

(2) establish specific, objective standards for receiving a high school diploma, including satisfactory performance on the standardized secondary exit-level assessment instrument described by Subsection (c).

(j) Funding for an adult education program under this section is provided based on the following:

(1) for participants who are 26 years of age and older, an amount per participant from available general revenue funds appropriated for the pilot program equal to the statewide average amount of state funding per student in weighted average daily attendance that would be allocated under the Foundation School Program to an open-enrollment charter school under Section 12.106 were the student under 26 years of age; and

(2) for participants who are at least 19 years of age and under 26 years of age, an amount per participant through the Foundation School Program equal to the amount of state funding per student in weighted average daily attendance that would be allocated under the Foundation School Program for the student's attendance at an open-enrollment charter school in accordance with Section 12.106.

(k) Sections 12.107 and 12.128 apply as though funds under this section were funds under Subchapter D, Chapter 12.

(l) Not later than December 1 of each even-numbered year, beginning December 1, 2016, the agency shall prepare and deliver to the governor, lieutenant governor, speaker of the house of representatives, and presiding officer of each standing legislative committee with primary jurisdiction over public education or economic development a report that:

(1) evaluates any adult education program operated under a charter granted under this section; and

(2) makes recommendations regarding the abolition, continuation, or expansion of the pilot program.

(m) The commissioner shall adopt rules necessary to administer the pilot program under this section. In adopting rules, the commissioner may modify charter school requirements only to the extent necessary for the administration of a charter school under this section that provides for adult education.

Added by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 478 (S.B. 1142), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2013.

SUBCHAPTER I. PROGRAMS FOR STUDENTS WHO ARE DEAF OR HARD OF HEARING


Sec. 29.301. DEFINITIONS. In this subchapter:

(1) "Admission, review, and dismissal committee" means the committee required by State Board of Education rules to develop the individualized education program required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. Section 1400 et seq.) for any student needing special education.

(2) "American Sign Language" means a complete, visual, and manual language with its own grammar and syntax.

(3) "English" includes writing, reading, speech, speech reading, cued speech, and any English-based manual-visual method of communication.

(4) "Unique communication mode" or "appropriate language mode" includes English and American Sign Language.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.302. FINDINGS. (a) The legislature finds that it is essential for the well-being and growth of students who are deaf or hard of hearing that educational programs recognize the unique nature of deafness and the hard-of-hearing condition and ensure that all students who are deaf or hard of hearing have appropriate, ongoing, and fully accessible educational opportunities. Students who are deaf or hard of hearing may choose to use a variety of language modes and languages, including oral and manual-visual language. Students who are deaf may choose to communicate through the language of the deaf community, American Sign Language, or through any of a number of English-based manual-visual languages. Students who are hard of hearing may choose to use spoken and written English, including speech reading or lip reading, together with amplification instruments, such as hearing aids, cochlear implants, or assistive listening systems, to communicate with the hearing population. Students who are deaf or hard of hearing may choose to use a combination of oral or manual-visual language systems, including cued speech, manual signed systems, and American Sign Language, or may rely exclusively on the oral-aural language of their choice. Students who are deaf or hard of hearing also may use other technologies to enhance language learning.

(b) The legislature recognizes that students who are deaf or hard of hearing should have the opportunity to develop proficiency in English, including oral or manual-visual methods of communication, and American Sign Language.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.303. UNIQUE COMMUNICATION. Students who are deaf or hard of hearing must have an education in which their unique communication mode is respected, used, and developed to an appropriate level of proficiency.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.304. QUALIFICATIONS OF PERSONNEL. (a) A student who is deaf or hard of hearing must have an education in which teachers, psychologists, speech therapists, progress assessors, administrators, and others involved in education understand the unique nature of deafness and the hard-of-hearing condition. A teacher of students who are deaf or hard of hearing either must be proficient in appropriate language modes or use an interpreter certified in appropriate language modes if certification is available.

(b) Each school district shall employ or provide access to appropriate qualified staff with proficient communications skills, consistent with credentialing requirements, to fulfill the responsibilities of the school district, and shall make positive efforts to employ qualified individuals with disabilities.

(c) Regular and special personnel who work with students who are deaf or hard of hearing must be adequately prepared to provide educational instruction and services to those students.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.305. LANGUAGE MODE PEERS. If practicable and not in conflict with any admission, review, and dismissal committee recommendations, a student who is deaf or hard of hearing must have an education in the company of a sufficient number of peers using the same language mode and with whom the student can communicate directly. If practicable, the peers must be of the same or approximately the same age and ability.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.306. FAMILIAL AND ADVOCATE INVOLVEMENT. A student who is deaf or hard of hearing must have an education in which the student's parents or legal guardians and advocates for the student's parents or legal guardians are involved in determining the extent, content, and purpose of programs. Other individuals, including individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing, may be involved at the discretion of parents or legal guardians or the school district.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.307. ROLE MODELS. A student who is deaf or hard of hearing shall be given the opportunity to be exposed to deaf or hard-of-hearing role models.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.308. REGIONAL PROGRAMS. Regional programs for students who are deaf or hard of hearing shall meet the unique communication needs of students who can benefit from those programs. Appropriate funding for those programs shall be consistent with federal and state law, and money appropriated to school districts for educational programs and services for students who are deaf or hard of hearing may not be allocated or used for any other program or service.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.309. COMPOSITION OF LOCAL SPECIAL EDUCATION ADVISORY COMMITTEE. If practicable, in a school district in which there are students who are deaf or hard of hearing, the local special education advisory committee required under State Board of Education rule must include persons who are deaf or hard of hearing and parents and legal guardians of students who are deaf or hard of hearing.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.310. PROCEDURES AND MATERIALS FOR ASSESSMENT AND PLACEMENT. (a) Procedures and materials for assessment and placement of students who are deaf or hard of hearing shall be selected and administered so as not to be racially, culturally, or sexually discriminatory.

(b) A single assessment instrument may not be the sole criterion for determining the placement of a student.

(c) The procedures and materials for the assessment and placement of a student who is deaf or hard of hearing shall be in the student's preferred mode of communication. All other procedures and materials used with any student who is deaf or hard of hearing and who has limited English proficiency shall be in the student's preferred mode of communication.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.311. EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS. (a) Educational programs for students who are deaf or hard of hearing must be coordinated with other public and private agencies, including:

(1) agencies operating early childhood intervention programs;

(2) preschools;

(3) agencies operating child development programs;

(4) nonpublic, nonsectarian schools;

(5) agencies operating regional occupational centers and programs; and

(6) the Texas School for the Deaf.

(b) As appropriate, the programs must also be coordinated with postsecondary and adult programs for persons who are deaf or hard of hearing.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.312. PSYCHOLOGICAL COUNSELING SERVICES. Appropriate psychological counseling services for a student who is deaf or hard of hearing shall be made available at the student's school site in the student's primary mode of communication. In the case of a student who is hard of hearing, appropriate auditory systems to enhance oral communication shall be used if required by the student's admission, review, and dismissal committee.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.313. EVALUATION OF PROGRAMS. Each school district must provide continuous evaluation of the effectiveness of programs of the district for students who are deaf or hard of hearing. If practicable, evaluations shall follow program excellence indicators established by the agency.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.314. TRANSITION INTO REGULAR CLASS. In addition to satisfying requirements of the admission, review, and dismissal committee and to satisfying requirements under state and federal law for vocational training, each school district shall develop and implement a transition plan for the transition of a student who is deaf or hard of hearing into a regular class program if the student is to be transferred from a special class or center or nonpublic, nonsectarian school into a regular class in a public school for any part of the school day. The transition plan must provide for activities:

(1) to integrate the student into the regular education program and specify the nature of each activity and the time spent on the activity each day; and

(2) to support the transition of the student from the special education program into the regular education program.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.315. TEXAS SCHOOL FOR THE DEAF MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING. The Texas Education Agency and the Texas School for the Deaf shall develop, agree to, and by commissioner rule adopt no later than September 1, 1998, a memorandum of understanding to establish:

(1) the method for developing and reevaluating a set of indicators of the quality of learning at the Texas School for the Deaf;

(2) the process for the agency to conduct and report on an annual evaluation of the school's performance on the indicators;

(3) the requirements for the school's board to publish, discuss, and disseminate an annual report describing the educational performance of the school;

(4) the process for the agency to assign an accreditation status to the school, to reevaluate the status on an annual basis, and, if necessary, to make on-site accreditation investigations; and

(5) the type of information the school shall be required to provide through the Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS).

Added by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1340, Sec. 6, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.

SUBCHAPTER K. PUBLIC JUNIOR COLLEGE AND SCHOOL DISTRICT PARTNERSHIP PROGRAM TO PROVIDE DROPOUT RECOVERY


For expiration of this section, see Subsection (d).


Sec. 29.401. APPLICABILITY. (a) This subchapter applies only to a public junior college, as defined by Section 61.003, located in a county:

(1) with a population of 750,000 or more; and

(2) with less than 65 percent of the population 25 years and older having graduated from high school, according to the most recent American Community Survey five-year estimates compiled by the United States Census Bureau.

(b) The application of this subchapter to a public junior college is not affected if, after the public junior college enters into a partnership and begins providing a dropout recovery program as provided by this subchapter, the county's demographics under Subsection (a)(2) change and the county no longer meets the requirements under Subsection (a)(2).

Text of subsection as added by Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1186 (H.B. 3708), Sec. 1


(c) This subchapter applies only to a school district with a dropout rate that is higher than 15 percent based on four-year high school completion rates. The application of this subchapter to a district is not affected if, after the district enters into a partnership as provided by this subchapter, the district's dropout rate changes and the district no longer meets the requirements under this subsection.

Text of subsection as added by Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 643 (S.B. 975), Sec. 1


(c) This subchapter applies only to a school district with a dropout rate that is higher than 15 percent. The application of this subchapter to a district is not affected if, after the district enters into a partnership as provided by this subchapter, the district's dropout rate changes and the district no longer meets the requirements under this subsection.

(d) This section expires September 1, 2013.

Added by Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 643 (S.B. 975), Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2011.

Added by Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1186 (H.B. 3708), Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2011.

Sec. 29.402. PARTNERSHIP. (a) A public junior college may enter into an articulation agreement to partner with one or more school districts located in the public junior college district to provide on the campus of the public junior college a dropout recovery program for students described by Subsection (b) to successfully complete and receive a diploma from a high school of the appropriate partnering school district.

(b) A person who is under 26 years of age is eligible to enroll in a dropout recovery program under this subchapter if the person:

(1) must complete not more than three course credits to complete the curriculum requirements for the foundation high school program for high school graduation; or

(2) has failed to perform satisfactorily on an end-of-course assessment instrument administered under Section 39.023(c) or an assessment instrument administered under Section 39.023(c) as that section existed before amendment by Chapter 1312 (S.B. 1031), Acts of the 80th Legislature, Regular Session, 2007.

(c) A public junior college under this section shall:

(1) design a dropout recovery curriculum that includes career and technology education courses that lead to industry or career certification;

(2) integrate into the dropout recovery curriculum research-based strategies to assist students in becoming able academically to pursue postsecondary education, including:

(A) high quality, college readiness instruction with strong academic and social supports;

(B) secondary to postsecondary bridging that builds college readiness skills, provides a plan for college completion, and ensures transition counseling; and

(C) information concerning appropriate supports available in the first year of postsecondary enrollment to ensure postsecondary persistence and success, to the extent funds are available for the purpose;

(3) offer advanced academic and transition opportunities, including dual credit courses and college preparatory courses, such as advanced placement courses; and

(4) coordinate with each partnering school district to provide in the articulation agreement that the district retains accountability for student attendance, student completion of high school course requirements, and student performance on assessment instruments as necessary for the student to receive a diploma from a high school of the partnering school district.

(c-1) A public junior college under this section may partner with a public technical institute, as defined by Section 61.003, to provide, as part of the dropout recovery program curriculum, career and technology education courses that lead to industry or career certification.

(d) A dropout recovery program provided under this subchapter must comply with the requirements of Sections 29.081(e) and (f).

Added by Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 643 (S.B. 975), Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2011.

Added by Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1186 (H.B. 3708), Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2011.

Amended by:

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 155 (S.B. 860), Sec. 1, eff. May 24, 2013.

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 211 (H.B. 5), Sec. 24(a), eff. June 10, 2013.

Sec. 29.403. FINANCING. (a) A public junior college district may receive from each partnering school district for each student from that district enrolled in a dropout recovery program under this subchapter an amount negotiated between the junior college district and that partnering district not to exceed the total average per student funding amount in that district during the preceding school year for maintenance and operations, including state and local funding, but excluding money from the available school fund.

(b) A student who is enrolled in a program under this subchapter is included in determining the average daily attendance under Section 42.005 of the partnering school district.

(c) A public technical institute may receive from a partnering public junior college for each student enrolled in a career and technology education course as provided by Section 29.402(c-1) an amount negotiated between the public technical institute and the partnering public junior college.

Added by Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 643 (S.B. 975), Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2011.

Added by Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1186 (H.B. 3708), Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2011.

Amended by:

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 155 (S.B. 860), Sec. 2, eff. May 24, 2013.

Sec. 29.404. OTHER FUNDING. (a) To the extent consistent with the General Appropriations Act, a public junior college under this subchapter is eligible to receive dropout prevention and intervention program funds appropriated to the agency.

(b) A public junior college under this subchapter may receive gifts, grants, and donations to use for the purposes of this subchapter.

Added by Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 643 (S.B. 975), Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2011.

Added by Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1186 (H.B. 3708), Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2011.

SUBCHAPTER L. SCHOOL DISTRICT PROGRAM FOR RESIDENTS OF FORENSIC STATE SUPPORTED LIVING CENTER


Sec. 29.451. DEFINITIONS. In this subchapter, "alleged offender resident," "interdisciplinary team," and "state supported living center" have the meanings assigned by Section 555.001, Health and Safety Code.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 284 (S.B. 643), Sec. 2, eff. June 11, 2009.

Sec. 29.452. APPLICABILITY. This subchapter applies only to an alleged offender resident of the forensic state supported living center established under Section 555.002, Health and Safety Code.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 284 (S.B. 643), Sec. 2, eff. June 11, 2009.

Sec. 29.453. SCHOOL DISTRICT SERVICES. (a) A school district shall provide educational services, including services required under Subchapter A, to each alleged offender resident who is under 22 years of age and otherwise eligible under Section 25.001 to attend school in the district. The district shall provide educational services to each alleged offender resident who is 21 years of age on September 1 of the school year and otherwise eligible to attend school in the district until the earlier of:

(1) the end of that school year; or

(2) the student's graduation from high school.

(b) The educational placement of an alleged offender resident and the educational services to be provided by a school district to the resident shall be determined by the resident's admission, review, and dismissal committee consistent with federal law and regulations regarding the placement of students with disabilities in the least restrictive environment. The resident's admission, review, and dismissal committee shall:

(1) inform the resident's interdisciplinary team of a determination the committee makes in accordance with this subsection; and

(2) consult, to the extent practicable, with the resident's interdisciplinary team concerning such a determination.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 284 (S.B. 643), Sec. 2, eff. June 11, 2009.

Sec. 29.454. BEHAVIOR MANAGEMENT; BEHAVIOR SUPPORT SPECIALISTS. (a) The discipline of an alleged offender resident by a school district is subject to Sections 37.0021 and 37.004 and to federal law governing the discipline of students with disabilities.

(b) A school district in which alleged offender residents are enrolled shall employ one or more behavior support specialists to serve the residents while at school. A behavior support specialist must:

(1) hold a baccalaureate degree;

(2) have training in providing to students positive behavioral support and intervention, as determined by the commissioner of education; and

(3) meet any other requirement jointly determined by the commissioner of education and the commissioner of the Department of Aging and Disability Services.

(c) A behavior support specialist shall conduct for each alleged offender resident enrolled in the school district a functional behavioral assessment that includes:

(1) data collection, through interviews with and observation of the resident;

(2) data analysis; and

(3) development of an individualized school behavioral intervention plan for the resident.

(d) Each behavior support specialist shall:

(1) ensure that each alleged offender resident enrolled in the school district is provided behavior management services under a school behavioral intervention plan based on the resident's functional behavioral assessment, as described by Subsection (c);

(2) communicate and coordinate with the resident's interdisciplinary team to ensure that behavioral intervention actions of the district and of the forensic state supported living center do not conflict;

(3) in the case of a resident who regresses:

(A) ensure that necessary corrective action is taken in the resident's individualized education program or school behavioral intervention plan, as appropriate; and

(B) communicate with the resident's interdisciplinary team concerning the regression and encourage the team to aggressively address the regression;

(4) participate in the resident's admission, review, and dismissal committee meetings in conjunction with:

(A) developing and implementing the resident's school behavioral intervention plan; and

(B) determining the appropriate educational placement for each resident, considering all available academic and behavioral information;

(5) coordinate each resident's school behavioral intervention plan with the resident's program of active treatment provided by the forensic state supported living center to ensure consistency of approach and response to the resident's identified behaviors;

(6) provide training for school district staff and, as appropriate, state supported living center staff in implementing behavioral intervention plans for each resident; and

(7) remain involved with the resident during the school day.

(e) Section 22.0511 applies to a behavior support specialist employed under this section by a school district.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 284 (S.B. 643), Sec. 2, eff. June 11, 2009.

Sec. 29.455. MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING. (a) A school district in which alleged offender residents are enrolled in school and the forensic state supported living center shall enter into a memorandum of understanding to:

(1) establish the duties and responsibilities of the behavior support specialist to ensure the safety of all students and teachers while educational services are provided to a resident at a school in the district; and

(2) ensure the provision of appropriate facilities for providing educational services and of necessary technological equipment if a resident's admission, review, and dismissal committee determines that the resident must receive educational services at the forensic state supported living center.

(b) A memorandum of understanding under Subsection (a) remains in effect until superseded by a subsequent memorandum of understanding between the school district and the forensic state supported living center or until otherwise rescinded.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 284 (S.B. 643), Sec. 2, eff. June 11, 2009.

Sec. 29.456. FAILURE OF SCHOOL DISTRICT AND CENTER TO AGREE. (a) If a school district in which alleged offender residents are enrolled in school and the forensic state supported living center fail to agree on the services required for residents or responsibility for those services, the district or center may refer the issue in disagreement to the commissioner of education and the commissioner of the Department of Aging and Disability Services.

(b) If the commissioner of education and the commissioner of the Department of Aging and Disability Services are unable to bring the school district and forensic state supported living center to agreement, the commissioners shall jointly submit a written request to the attorney general to appoint a neutral third party knowledgeable in special education and mental retardation issues to resolve each issue on which the district and the center disagree. The decision of the neutral third party is final and may not be appealed. The district and the center shall implement the decision of the neutral third party. The commissioner of education or the commissioner of the Department of Aging and Disability Services shall ensure that the district and the center implement the decision of the neutral third party.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 284 (S.B. 643), Sec. 2, eff. June 11, 2009.

Sec. 29.457. FUNDING. (a) In addition to other funding to which a school district is entitled under this code, each district in which alleged offender residents attend school is entitled to an annual allotment of $5,100 for each resident in average daily attendance or a different amount for any year provided by appropriation.

(b) Not later than December 1 of each year, a school district that receives an allotment under this section shall submit a report accounting for the expenditure of funds received under this section to the governor, the lieutenant governor, the speaker of the house of representatives, the chairs of the standing committees of the senate and house of representatives with primary jurisdiction regarding persons with mental retardation and public education, and each member of the legislature whose district contains any portion of the territory included in the school.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 284 (S.B. 643), Sec. 2, eff. June 11, 2009.

Sec. 29.458. RULES. The commissioner may adopt rules as necessary to administer this subchapter.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 284 (S.B. 643), Sec. 2, eff. June 11, 2009.

SUBCHAPTER Z. MISCELLANEOUS PROGRAMS


Sec. 29.901. MILITARY INSTRUCTION. (a) In each school district in which military instruction is conducted under a state or federal law requiring the district to give bond or otherwise indemnify this state or the United States or any authorized agency of either in an amount and on conditions determined by any agency under that law for the care, safekeeping, and return of property furnished, the board of trustees may:

(1) make contracts with the proper governmental agency with respect to the teaching of courses in military training; and

(2) execute, as principal or surety, a bond to secure the contracts to procure arms, ammunition, animals, uniforms, equipment, supplies, means of transportation, or other needed property.

(b) In a district in which military instruction is given as provided by Subsection (a), available school funds may be spent to:

(1) procure from any guaranty or surety company any bond authorized by Subsection (a), in the amount and on the conditions required by the governmental agency; or

(2) reimburse this state or the United States for any loss pursuant to the terms of any contract entered into.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Sec. 29.902. DRIVER EDUCATION. (a) The agency shall develop a program of organized instruction in driver education and traffic safety for public school students. A student who will be 15 years of age or older before a driver education and traffic safety course ends may enroll in the course.

(b) The agency shall establish standards for the certification of professional and paraprofessional personnel who conduct the programs in the public schools.

(c) A school district shall consider offering a driver education and traffic safety course during each school year. If the district offers the course, the district may:

(1) conduct the course and charge a fee for the course in the amount determined by the agency to be comparable to the fee charged by a driver education school that holds a license under Chapter 1001; or

(2) contract with a driver education school that holds a license under Chapter 1001 to conduct the course.

Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff. May 30, 1995.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1146 (H.B. 2730), Sec. 12.02, eff. September 1, 2009.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1253 (H.B. 339), Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2009.

Sec. 29.9021. WATER SAFETY EDUCATION. The agency by rule shall incorporate a curriculum module on recreational water safety into driver education instruction using the video on recreational water safety produced under Section 12.012, Parks and Wildlife Code, when the agency is notified that the video is available.

Added by Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1275 (H.B. 673), Sec. 2, eff. June 17, 2011.

Sec. 29.903. CARDIOPULMONARY RESUSCITATION (CPR) INSTRUCTION; DONATIONS TO SCHOOL DISTRICTS FOR USE IN CPR INSTRUCTION. (a) A school district may accept from the agency donations the agency receives under Section 7.026 for use in providing instruction to students in the principles and techniques of CPR. A district may accept other donations, including donations of equipment, for use in providing the instruction.

(b) Repealed by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1371, Sec. 8, eff. June 15, 2007.

(c) A district may use resources other than those made available under Section 7.026 or this section to provide instruction to students in the principles and techniques of CPR.

(d) The commissioner may adopt rules as necessary to implement this section.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 814, Sec. 2, eff. June 14, 2001. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1275, Sec. 3(6), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1371 (S.B. 7), Sec. 5, eff. June 15, 2007.

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1371 (S.B. 7), Sec. 8, eff. June 15, 2007.

Sec. 29.904. PLAN TO INCREASE ENROLLMENT IN INSTITUTIONS OF HIGHER EDUCATION. (a) This section applies only to a school district with one or more high schools that:

(1) during the preceding five years, have had an average of at least 26 students in the high school graduating class; and

(2) for any two consecutive years during the preceding five years, have been among the lowest 10 percent of high schools in this state in the percentage of students graduating from the high school and enrolling for the following academic year in an institution of higher education.

(b) The agency and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board shall collaborate in identifying each school district to which this section applies. Not later than May 1 of each year:

(1) the agency shall notify a district to which this section applies of the applicability of this section to the district unless the district is operating under a plan required by this section; and

(2) the coordinating board shall notify each public institution of higher education in this state in closest geographic proximity to a district to which this section applies of the applicability of this section to the district unless the district is operating under a plan required by this section.

(c) Except as otherwise provided by this subsection, not later than August 1 of the year in which a school district receives notice under Subsection (b), the district shall enter into an agreement with the public institution of higher education in this state in closest geographic proximity to the district to develop a plan to increase the percentage of the district's graduating seniors who enroll in an institution of higher education for the academic year following graduation. The public institution of higher education in this state in closest geographic proximity to the district shall enter into an agreement under this subsection unless that institution of higher education or the district recruits another public institution of higher education in this state to enter into that agreement. A district and the public institution of higher education entering into the agreement with the district may also enter into an agreement with one or more other public institutions of higher education in this state to participate in developing the plan.

(d) A plan developed under this section:

(1) must establish clear, achievable goals for increasing the percentage of the school district's graduating seniors, particularly the graduating seniors attending a high school described by Subsection (a), who enroll in an institution of higher education for the academic year following graduation;

(2) must establish an accurate method of measuring progress toward the goals established under Subdivision (1) that may include the percentage of district high school students and the percentage of students attending a district high school described by Subsection (a) who:

(A) are enrolled in a course for which a student may earn college credit, such as an advanced placement or international baccalaureate course or a course offered through concurrent enrollment in high school and at an institution of higher education;

(B) are enrolled in courses that meet the curriculum requirements for the distinguished level of achievement under the foundation high school program as determined under Section 28.025;

(C) have submitted a free application for federal student aid (FAFSA);

(D) are exempt under Section 51.3062(p) or (q) from administration of an assessment instrument under Section 51.3062 or have performed successfully on an assessment instrument under Section 51.3062;

(E) graduate from high school;

(F) graduate from an institution of higher education; and

(G) have taken college entrance examinations and the average score of those students on the examinations;

(3) must cover a period of at least five years; and

(4) may be directed at district students at any level of primary or secondary education.

(e) A school district shall file the plan with the commissioner of education and the commissioner of higher education.

(f) A school district must implement the plan at the beginning of the school year following the year during which the district receives notice under Subsection (b).

(g) A school district may revise the plan as necessary in response to achieving or failing to achieve goals under the plan.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 795, Sec. 1, eff. Sept 1, 2001. Renumbered from Education Code Sec. 29.903 by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1275, Sec. 2(16), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 895 (H.B. 3), Sec. 43, eff. June 19, 2009.

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 211 (H.B. 5), Sec. 25(a), eff. June 10, 2013.

Sec. 29.905. COMMUNITY EDUCATION RELATING TO HATE CRIME LAW. (a) The attorney general, in cooperation with the agency, shall develop a program that provides instruction about state laws on hate crimes:

(1) at appropriate grade levels, to students; and

(2) to the community at large.

(b) The agency shall make the program available to a school on the request of the board of trustees or the school district of which the school is a part, or if the school is an open-enrollment charter school, on the request of the governing body of the school.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 85, Sec. 6.01, eff. Sept. 1, 2001. Renumbered from Education Code Sec. 29.903 by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1275, Sec. 2(17), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Sec. 29.906. CHARACTER EDUCATION PROGRAM. (a) A school district may provide a character education program.

(b) A character education program under this section must:

(1) stress positive character traits, such as:

(A) courage;

(B) trustworthiness, including honesty, reliability, punctuality, and loyalty;

(C) integrity;

(D) respect and courtesy;

(E) responsibility, including accountability, diligence, perseverance, and self-control;

(F) fairness, including justice and freedom from prejudice;

(G) caring, including kindness, empathy, compassion, consideration, patience, generosity, and charity;

(H) good citizenship, including patriotism, concern for the common good and the community, and respect for authority and the law; and

(I) school pride;

(2) use integrated teaching strategies; and

(3) be age appropriate.

(c) In developing or selecting a character education program under this section, a school district shall consult with a committee selected by the district that consists of:

(1) parents of district students;

(2) educators; and

(3) other members of the community, including community leaders.

(d) This section does not require or authorize proselytizing or indoctrinating concerning any specific religious or political belief.

(e) The agency shall:

(1) maintain a list of character education programs that school districts have implemented that meet the criteria under Subsection (b);

(2) based on data reported by districts, annually designate as a Character Plus School each school that provides a character education program that:

(A) meets the criteria prescribed by Subsection (b); and

(B) is approved by the committee selected under Subsection (c); and

(3) include in the report required under Section 39.332:

(A) based on data reported by districts, the impact of character education programs on student discipline and academic achievement; and

(B) other reported data relating to character education programs the agency considers appropriate for inclusion.

(f) The agency may accept money from federal government and private sources to use in assisting school districts in implementing character education programs that meet the criteria prescribed by Subsection (b).

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 478, Sec. 1, eff. June 11, 2001. Renumbered from Education Code Sec. 29.903 by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1275, Sec. 2(18), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 895 (H.B. 3), Sec. 44, eff. June 19, 2009.

Sec. 29.907. CELEBRATE FREEDOM WEEK. (a) To educate students about the sacrifices made for freedom in the founding of this country and the values on which this country was founded, the week in which September 17 falls is designated as Celebrate Freedom Week in public schools. For purposes of this subsection, Sunday is considered the first day of the week.

(b) The agency, in cooperation with other state agencies who voluntarily participate, may promote Celebrate Freedom Week through a coordinated program. Nothing in this subsection shall give any other state agency the authority to develop a program that provides instruction unless funds are specifically appropriated to that agency for that purpose.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 451, Sec. 1, eff. June 7, 2001. Renumbered from Education Code Sec. 29.903 and amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 594, Sec. 1, eff. June 20, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 6.0031, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 40 (H.B. 708), Sec. 1, eff. May 8, 2007.

Sec. 29.908. EARLY COLLEGE EDUCATION PROGRAM. (a) The commissioner shall establish and administer an early college education program for students who are at risk of dropping out of school or who wish to accelerate completion of the high school program. For purposes of this subsection, "student at risk of dropping out of school" has the meaning assigned by Section 29.081.

(b) The program must:

(1) provide for a course of study that enables a participating student to combine high school courses and college-level courses during grade levels 9 through 12;

(2) allow a participating student to complete high school and, on or before the fifth anniversary of the date of the student's first day of high school, receive a high school diploma and either:

(A) an associate degree; or

(B) at least 60 semester credit hours toward a baccalaureate degree;

(3) include articulation agreements with colleges, universities, and technical schools in this state to provide a participating student access to postsecondary educational and training opportunities at a college, university, or technical school; and

(4) provide a participating student flexibility in class scheduling and academic mentoring.

(b-1) Each articulation agreement under Subsection (b)(3) must address:

(1) curriculum alignment;

(2) instructional materials;

(3) the instructional calendar;

(4) courses of study;

(5) eligibility of students for higher education financial assistance;

(6) student enrollment and attendance;

(7) grading periods and policies; and

(8) administration of statewide assessment instruments under Subchapter B, Chapter 39.

(b-2) The P-16 Council established under Section 61.076 shall provide guidance in case of any conflict that arises between parties to an articulation agreement under Subsection (b)(3).

(c) A student participating in the program is entitled to the benefits of the Foundation School Program in proportion to the amount of time spent by the student on high school courses, in accordance with rules adopted by the commissioner, while completing the course of study established by the applicable articulation agreement under Subsection (b)(3).

(d) The commissioner may accept gifts, grants, and donations from any source, including private and nonprofit organizations. Private and nonprofit organizations that contribute to the fund shall receive an award under Section 7.113.

(e) The commissioner shall collaborate with the Texas Workforce Commission and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to develop and implement a strategic plan to enhance private industry participation under this section. The plan must include:

(1) strategies to increase private industry participation; and

(2) incentives for businesses and nonprofit organizations that choose to make donations and work with high schools that participate in a program under this section to maximize job placement opportunities for program graduates.

(f) Not later than December 1, 2014, the commissioner shall provide a report that summarizes the strategic plan developed under Subsection (e) to the lieutenant governor, the speaker of the house of representatives, the governor, the Texas Workforce Commission, and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. The Texas Education Agency, the Texas Workforce Commission, and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board shall each make the report available on the respective agency's Internet website.

(g) The commissioner may adopt rules as necessary to administer the program. The rules may provide for giving preference in receiving program benefits to a student who is in the first generation of the student's family to attend college and may establish other distinctions or criteria based on student need. The commissioner shall consult the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board in administering the program. The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board may adopt rules as necessary to exercise its powers and duties under this section. The P-16 Council may make recommendations, including recommendations for rules, concerning administration of the program.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1201, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 879 (S.B. 1146), Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2005.

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 921 (H.B. 3167), Sec. 4.006, eff. September 1, 2007.

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1220 (S.B. 1557), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2013.

Sec. 29.909. DISTANCE LEARNING COURSES. (a) A school district or open-enrollment charter school that provides a course through distance learning and seeks to inform other districts or schools of the availability of the course may submit information to the agency regarding the course, including the number of positions available for student enrollment in the course. The district or school may submit updated information at the beginning of each semester.

(b) The agency shall make information submitted under this section available on the agency's Internet website.

(c) The commissioner may adopt rules necessary to implement this section, including rules governing student enrollment. The commissioner may not adopt rules governing course pricing, and the price for a course shall be determined by the school districts or open-enrollment charter schools involved.

Added by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1386 (H.B. 1926), Sec. 2, eff. June 14, 2013.

Sec. 29.910. PROGRAMS OF MUTUAL BENEFIT. (a) The commissioner, in coordination with appropriate representatives of institutions of higher education and school districts, shall develop:

(1) a diagnostic and assistance program for each subject assessed by an assessment instrument under Section 39.023(c); and

(2) other academic programs of mutual benefit to school districts and institutions of higher education.

(b) The commissioner shall seek private funding to make available and maintain on the Internet each diagnostic and assistance program developed under Subsection (a)(1).

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1212, Sec. 10, eff. June 20, 2003.

Sec. 29.911. GENERATION TEXAS WEEK. (a) To educate middle school, junior high school, and high school students about the importance of higher education, each school district and each open-enrollment charter school offering any of those grade levels shall designate one week during the school year as Generation Texas Week.

(b) During the designated week, each middle school, junior high school, and high school shall provide students with comprehensive grade-appropriate information regarding the pursuit of higher education. The information provided must include information regarding:

(1) higher education options available to students;

(2) standard admission requirements for institutions of higher education, including:

(A) overall high school grade point average;

(B) required curriculum;

(C) college readiness standards and expectations as determined under Section 28.008; and

(D) scores necessary on generally recognized tests or assessment instruments used in admissions determinations, including the Scholastic Assessment Test and the American College Test;

(3) automatic admission of certain students to general academic teaching institutions as provided by Section 51.803; and

(4) financial aid availability and requirements, including the financial aid information provided by school counselors under Section 33.007(b).

(c) In addition to the information provided under Subsection (b), each middle school, junior high school, and high school shall provide to the students during the designated week at least one public speaker to promote the importance of higher education.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1058 (H.B. 2237), Sec. 12, eff. June 15, 2007.

Amended by:

Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1033 (H.B. 2909), Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2011.

Acts 2011, 82nd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1033 (H.B. 2909), Sec. 2, eff. June 17, 2011.

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 443 (S.B. 715), Sec. 23, eff. June 14, 2013.

Sec. 29.915. FINANCIAL LITERACY PILOT PROGRAM. (a) In this section, "program" means the financial literacy pilot program.

(b) To the extent funding is available under Subsection (e), the agency by rule shall establish and implement a financial literacy pilot program to provide students in participating school districts with the knowledge and skills necessary as self-supporting adults to make critical decisions relating to personal financial matters.

(c) The agency shall collaborate with the Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner and the State Securities Board to develop the curriculum and instructional materials for the program. The curriculum and instructional materials must include information about:

(1) avoiding and eliminating credit card debt;

(2) understanding the rights and responsibilities of renting or buying a home;

(3) managing money to make the transition from renting a home to home ownership;

(4) starting a small business;

(5) being a prudent investor in the stock market and using other investment options;

(6) beginning a savings program;

(7) bankruptcy;

(8) the types of bank accounts available to consumers and the benefits of maintaining a bank account;

(9) balancing a check book;

(10) the types of loans available to consumers and becoming a low-risk borrower; and

(11) the use of insurance as a means of protecting against financial risk.

(d) The agency shall develop an application and selection process for selecting school districts to participate in the program. The agency may select not more than 100 school districts to participate in the program.

(e) The agency may solicit and accept a gift, grant, or donation from any source, including a foundation, private entity, governmental entity, or institution of higher education, for the implementation of the program. The program may be implemented only if sufficient funds are available under this subsection for that purpose.

Added by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 832 (S.B. 851), Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2005.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1328 (H.B. 3646), Sec. 23, eff. September 1, 2009.

Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 1221 (S.B. 1590), Sec. 2, eff. June 14, 2013.

Sec. 29.916. HOME-SCHOOLED STUDENT MERIT SCHOLARSHIP AND ADVANCED PLACEMENT TESTING. (a) In this section:

(1) "Home-schooled student" means a student who predominantly receives instruction in a general elementary or secondary education program that is provided by the parent, or a person standing in parental authority, in or through the child's home.

(2) "PSAT/NMSQT" means the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test sponsored by the College Board and Educational Testing Service and the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

(b) A school district shall permit a home-schooled student entitled under Section 25.001 to attend public school in the district to participate in an administration of the PSAT/NMSQT or a college advanced placement test offered by the district. A school district shall require a home-schooled student to pay the same fee to participate in a test under this subsection that a student enrolled in the district is required to pay.

(c) A school district shall post on an Internet website maintained by the district the date the PSAT/NMSQT will be administered and the date any college advanced placement tests will be administered. The notice required under this subsection must state that the PSAT/NMSQT or the advanced placement test is available for home-schooled students eligible to attend school in the district and describe the procedures for a home-schooled student to register for the test. A school district that does not maintain an Internet website must publish the information required by this subsection in a newspaper in the district. If a newspaper is not published in the school district, the district shall provide for the publication of notice in at least one newspaper in the county in which the district's central administrative office is located. The information required under this subsection must be posted or published at the same time and with the same frequency with which the information is provided to a student who attends a district school.

(d) The commissioner may adopt rules as necessary to implement this section.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1211 (H.B. 1844), Sec. 1, eff. June 15, 2007.

Sec. 29.917. HIGHER EDUCATION AND WORKFORCE READINESS PROGRAMS. (a) From funds appropriated for the purpose, the commissioner may award grants to organizations that provide volunteers to teach classroom or after-school programs to enhance:

(1) college readiness;

(2) workforce readiness;

(3) dropout prevention; or

(4) personal financial literacy.

(b) To implement or administer a program under this section, the commissioner may accept gifts, grants, and donations from public or private entities.

(c) The commissioner may conduct a study of the programs under this section to determine the success of the programs in preparing students for higher education and participation in the workforce.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1058 (H.B. 2237), Sec. 12, eff. June 15, 2007.

Sec. 29.918. DROPOUT PREVENTION STRATEGIES. (a) Notwithstanding Section 39.234 or 42.152, a school district or open-enrollment charter school with a high dropout rate, as determined by the commissioner, must submit a plan to the commissioner describing the manner in which the district or charter school intends to use the compensatory education allotment under Section 42.152 and the high school allotment under Section 42.160 for developing and implementing research-based strategies for dropout prevention. The district or charter school shall submit the plan not later than December 1 of each school year preceding the school year in which the district or charter school will receive the compensatory education allotment or high school allotment to which the plan applies.

(b) A school district or open-enrollment charter school to which this section applies may not spend or obligate more than 25 percent of the district's or charter school's compensatory education allotment or high school allotment unless the commissioner approves the plan submitted under Subsection (a). The commissioner shall complete an initial review of the district's or charter school's plan not later than March 1 of the school year preceding the school year in which the district or charter school will receive the compensatory education allotment or high school allotment to which the plan applies.

(c) The commissioner shall adopt rules to administer this section. The commissioner may impose interventions or sanctions under Section 39.102 or 39.104 if a school district or open-enrollment charter school fails to timely comply with this section.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1058 (H.B. 2237), Sec. 12, eff. June 15, 2007.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 895 (H.B. 3), Sec. 45, eff. June 19, 2009.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1328 (H.B. 3646), Sec. 24, eff. September 1, 2009.

Sec. 29.920. WINTER CELEBRATIONS. (a) A school district may educate students about the history of traditional winter celebrations, and allow students and district staff to offer traditional greetings regarding the celebrations, including:

(1) "Merry Christmas";

(2) "Happy Hanukkah"; and

(3) "happy holidays."

(b) Except as provided by Subsection (c), a school district may display on school property scenes or symbols associated with traditional winter celebrations, including a menorah or a Christmas image such as a nativity scene or Christmas tree, if the display includes a scene or symbol of:

(1) more than one religion; or

(2) one religion and at least one secular scene or symbol.

(c) A display relating to a traditional winter celebration may not include a message that encourages adherence to a particular religious belief.

Added by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 236 (H.B. 308), Sec. 1, eff. June 14, 2013.

Sec. 29.922. TEXAS WORKFORCE INNOVATION NEEDS PROGRAM. (a) In this section:

(1) "Private or independent institution of higher education" has the meaning assigned by Section 61.003.

(2) "Program" means the Texas Workforce Innovation Needs Program.

(b) The Texas Workforce Innovation Needs Program is established to:

(1) provide selected school districts, public institutions of higher education, and private or independent institutions of higher education with the opportunity to establish innovative programs designed to prepare students for careers for which there is demand in this state; and

(2) use the results of those programs to inform the governor, legislature, and commissioner concerning methods for transforming public education and higher education in this state by improving student learning and career preparedness.

(c) To apply to participate in the program, a school district, public institution of higher education, or private or independent institution of higher education must use the form and apply in the time and manner established by commissioner rule. The application process must require each applicant district or institution of higher education to submit a detailed plan as required by Subsections (d) and (e) of the instruction and accountability the applicant would provide under the program.

(d) A plan submitted under Subsection (c):

(1) must:

(A) be designed to support improved instruction of and learning by students and provide evidence of the accurate assessment of the quality of learning on campus;

(B) describe any waiver of an applicable prohibition, requirement, or restriction for which the district or institution of higher education intends to apply; and

(C) include any other information required by commissioner rule; and

(2) may, if submitted by a school district, designate one or more campuses rather than the entire district to participate in the program.

(e) In addition to satisfying the requirements under Subsection (d)(1), a plan submitted under Subsection (c) must, to the greatest extent appropriate for the grade or higher education levels served under the program, either:

(1) focus on engagement of students in competency-based learning as necessary to earn postsecondary credentials, including:

(A) career and technical certificates;

(B) associate's degrees;

(C) bachelor's degrees; and

(D) graduate degrees; or

(2) incorporate career and technical courses into dual enrollment courses or into the early college education program under Section 29.908 to provide students the opportunity to earn a career or technical certificate or associate's degree.

(f) From among the school districts and institutions of higher education that apply as required under this section, the commissioner shall select those school districts and institutions of higher education that present the plans that are most likely to be effective in producing the next generation of higher performing public schools and institutions of higher education that provide education and training in an innovative form and manner to prepare students for careers for which there is demand in this state.

(g) The commissioner shall convene program leaders periodically to discuss methods to transform learning opportunities for all students, build cross-institution support systems and training, and share best practices tools and processes.

(h) A school district or institution of higher education participating in the program or the commissioner may, for purposes of this section, accept gifts, grants, or donations from any source, including a private or governmental entity.

(i) To cover the costs of administering the program, the commissioner may charge a fee to a school district or institution of higher education participating in the program.

(j) In consultation with interested school districts, institutions of higher education, and other appropriate interested persons, the commissioner shall adopt rules as necessary for purposes of this section.

(k) Not later than December 1, 2014, and not later than December 1, 2016, with the assistance of school districts and institutions of higher education participating in the program, the commissioner shall submit to the governor and the legislature reports concerning the performance and progress of the program participants. The report submitted not later than December 1, 2014, must include any recommendation by the commissioner concerning legislative authorization necessary for the commissioner to waive a prohibition, requirement, or restriction that applies to a program participant and other school district or institution of higher education interested in beginning a similar program. To prepare for implementation of a commissioner waiver, the commissioner shall seek any necessary federal waiver. This subsection expires January 1, 2020.

Added by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 215 (H.B. 3662), Sec. 1, eff. June 10, 2013.