BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    






                          SENATE COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION
                               Gloria Romero, Chair
                            2009-2010 Regular Session
                                         

          BILL NO:       AB 374
          AUTHOR:        Block
          AMENDED:       June 1, 2009
          FISCAL COMM:   Yes            HEARING DATE:  July 8, 2009
          URGENCY:       No             CONSULTANT:    Lynn Lorber

           SUBJECT  :  Consequences of dropping out notice.
          
           SUMMARY  

          This bill requires the Superintendent of Public Instruction  
          to produce a notice to pupils about the consequences of  
          dropping out of school before reaching 18 years of age or  
          graduating from high school.

           BACKGROUND  

          Current law:

          1)   Provides that each person between the ages of 6 and 18  
               years not exempted by existing law is subject to  
               compulsory full-time education and shall attend the  
               public full-time day school or continuation school or  
               classes and for the full length of the schoolday.  

          2)   Requires a parent, guardian, or other person having  
               control or charge of the pupil to send the pupil to  
               school, as specified.

          As reported by the California Department of Education, the  
          state's dropout rate for the 2006-07 school year was 24.2%,  
          and the dropout rate for that time period for the Los Angeles  
          Unified School District was 33.6%.

           ANALYSIS
           
           This bill  requires the Superintendent of Public Instruction  
          (SPI) to produce a notice to pupils about the consequences of  









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          dropping out of school before reaching 18 years of age or  
          graduating from high school.  Specifically, this bill:

          1)   Requires the consequences of dropping out notice to  
               include, but is not limited to, all of the following:


               a)        The potential consequences of dropping out  
                    include:

                    i)             Greater difficulty finding a job.
                    ii)            Reduced income and purchasing power.
                    iii)           Greater likelihood of engaging in  
                         criminal activity.
                    iv)            Greater likelihood of spending time  
                         in jail, prison, or both.
                    v)             Greater likelihood of receiving  
                         welfare, other forms of public assistance, or  
                         both.
                    vi)            Fewer choices about where to live.
                    vii)           Lesser likelihood of properly caring  
                         for and educating children.

               b)        The right of a pupil to reenroll in school to  
                    complete the requirements for graduation from high  
                    school and the procedure for reenrollment.

               c)        The availability of alternative educational  
                    services, including continuation school,  
                    independent study, adult education, community  
                    college, and the General Educational Development  
                    (GED) tests.

          2)   Requires the SPI to post the notice on the California  
               Department of Education's website.

           STAFF COMMENTS  

           1)   Will it help  ?  Will posting a notice on the California  
               Department of Education's (CDE's) website affect dropout  










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               rates?  A prior version of this bill encouraged schools  
               to download the notice from the CDE website and  
               distribute it to pupils; however, that provision was  
               removed due to cost pressure concerns.

           2)   Fiscal impact  .  According to the Assembly Appropriations  
               Committee analysis, this bill would impose one-time  
               General Fund costs, likely in excess of $150,000, upon  
               the CDE to develop and post the notice on its Internet  
               website.  In addition, there may be annual, minor  
               absorbable General Fund costs to maintain and update the  
               notice.

           SUPPORT  

          American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees
          California Teachers Association
          Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities

           OPPOSITION

           None received.