Amended in Assembly March 26, 2015

California Legislature—2015–16 Regular Session

Assembly BillNo. 1014

Introduced by Assembly Member Thurmond

February 26, 2015

An actbegin insert to add Section 48270 to the Education Code,end insert relating to pupilsbegin insert, and making an appropriation thereforend insert.


AB 1014, as amended, Thurmond. Pupils:begin delete truancy.end deletebegin insert truancy: Our Children’s Success-The Early Intervention Attendance Grant Program.end insert

Existing law requires a pupil subject to compulsory full-time education or to compulsory continuation education who is absent from school without a valid excuse 3 full days in one school year or tardy or absent for more than a 30-minute period during the schoolday without a valid excuse on 3 occasions in one school year, or any combination thereof, to be classified as a truant. Existing law requires, upon a pupil’s initial classification as a truant, a school district to notify the pupil’s parent or guardian of specified information using the most cost-effective method possible.

This bill wouldbegin delete state the intent of the Legislature to enact legislation that would recognize and resolve the current school truancy crisis, help facilitate the return of chronically absent children to consistent and enduring school attendance, and recognize the importance of foundational education in the early years. The bill would alsoend delete make various findings and declarations regarding truancybegin insert. The bill would establish end insertbegin insertend insertbegin insertOur Children’s Success-end insertbegin insertThe Early Intervention Attendance Grant Program under the administration of the State Department of Education. The program would provide grants to applicant public schools seeking to resolve the attendance problems of pupils in kindergarten and grades 1 to 3, inclusive. The bill would provide that public schools maintaining kindergarten or any of grades 1 to 3, inclusive, could apply for grants under the program. The bill would require the applications for grants submitted by schools to the department to reflect a plan including specified componentsend insert.

begin insert

The bill would require the department to give priority to applicant schools that have prioritized pupil engagement in their local control and accountability plans. The bill would appropriate an unspecified sum from an unspecified source to the department for purposes of implementing the bill.

end insert

Vote: majority. Appropriation: begin deleteno end deletebegin insertyesend insert. Fiscal committee: begin deleteno end deletebegin insertyesend insert. State-mandated local program: no.

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

P2    1


The Legislature finds and declares all of the of
2the following:

3(a) Only 17 percent of chronically absent kindergartners and
4first graders in California read proficiently by grade 3 and pupils
5who do not read proficiently by grade 3 are four times more likely
6to drop out of school. Children who drop out of school cost the
7state more than $46 billion each year, including more than $1
8billion in juvenile crime costs alone.

9(b) Ninety percent of elementary school pupils with severe
10attendance problems, missing 36 or more days in the school year,
11are estimated to be from low-income families.

12(c) In the 2013-14 school year, 250,000 elementary school
13pupils and 1 in 10 pupils from low-income families were
14chronically absent, missing 10 percent or more of the school year.

15(d) In the 2013-14 school year, African American elementary
16school pupils were the highest subgroup, including homeless pupils,
17to be truant and these pupils are chronically truant at four times
18the rate of all other pupils.

19(e) In the 2012-13 school year, one in five, or 744,085,
20elementary school pupils were truant, an increase of 1.2 percent
21from the 2011-12 school year.

22(f) In the 2010-11 school year, California schools lost $1.4
23billion in average daily attendance funding due to pupil absences
P3    1and California school districts have lost over $3.5 billion between
2the 2010-11 and 2013-14 school years.

begin delete

SEC. 2.  

It is the intent of the Legislature to enact legislation
4that would do both of the following:

5(a) Recognize and resolve the current school truancy crisis and
6help facilitate the return of chronically absent children to consistent
7and enduring school attendance.

8(b) Recognize the importance of foundational education in the
9early years by focusing on the chronically absent kindergarten and
10grades 1 to 3, inclusive, aged children.

end delete
11begin insert

begin insertSEC. end insertbegin insert2.end insert  

end insert

begin insertSection 48270 is added to the end insertbegin insertEducation Codeend insertbegin insert, to read:end insert

begin insert

begin insert48270.end insert  

(a) Our Children’s Success-The Early Intervention
13Attendance Grant Program is hereby established under the
14administration of the department. This grant program is established
15for the purpose of helping public schools resolve the attendance
16problems of pupils in kindergarten and grades 1 to 3, inclusive.
17This grant program shall be implemented upon the appropriation
18of sufficient funding under Section 3 of the act that added this

20(b) A public school maintaining kindergarten or any of grades
211 to 3, inclusive, seeking to participate in the grant program
22established by this section may apply to the department for a grant
23pursuant to this section. An application submitted by a public
24school to the department under this subdivision shall reflect a plan
25that includes, but is not necessarily limited to, all of the following

27(1) Establishment of a training program for key school officials
28and attendance staff to identify pupils with chronic attendance
29problems upon their second occurrence of tardiness or absence
30in a school year, and the mailing of attendance letters to the pupil’s
31home in a timely manner.

32(2) Establishment of a phone call outreach program, including
33a minimum of two calls from a school official, not limited to a
34recording, to follow up on those pupils whose attendance problems
35continue during that school year after the attendance letters are

37(3) Establishment of a parent advocate position or positions,
38designated for ongoing follow-up with the pupil and the parent
39throughout the school year to ensure the pupil’s continued
40consistent school attendance. The number of these parent advocate
P4    1positions may vary according to the school’s needs, resources,
2and the parent advocate’s ability to manage the workload.

3(4) Establishment of an outreach worker position or positions
4whose primary job is assisting families with a child or children
5who have ongoing chronic attendance problems. The duties of an
6outreach worker include sending letters, making phone calls and
7home visits, and helping to connect the family to the appropriate
8local, state, or federal programs in order to resolve issues that
9are creating impediments to the child’s consistent attendance in
10school. The number of these outreach worker positions can vary
11according to the school’s needs, resources, and the outreach
12worker’s ability to manage the workload.

13(5) Determining that the applicant school’s plan is instituted,
14to the best of the school’s ability, before a pupil enters the school
15attendance review board process.

16(6) Establishment of a plan for teacher follow-up with pupils
17with chronic attendance problems to make up for lost instructional

19(7) Establishment of a plan to track pupil attendance and
20aggregate data on tardiness and attendance throughout the school
21year to determine whether improvement has been made.

22(c) In evaluating applications for grants under this section, the
23department shall give priority to applicant schools that have
24prioritized pupil engagement in their local control and
25accountability plans adopted pursuant to Section 52060.

26(d) The grant program established by this section shall not be
27construed as a replacement of, or a substitution for, the school
28attendance review board process as described in this article.

end insert
29begin insert

begin insertSEC. end insertbegin insert3.end insert  

end insert

begin insertend insertbegin insertThe sum of ____ dollars ($____) is hereby
30appropriated to the State Department of Education for purposes
31of implementing Our Children’s Success-end insert
begin insertThe Early Intervention
32Attendance Grant Program, as established in Section 48270 of the
33Education Code. It is the intent of the Legislature that the funds
34appropriated under this section be drawn from sources that may
35include, but are not necessarily limited to, the General Fund, the
36Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Fund established by Proposition
3747 on the November 2014 statewide general election ballot, federal
P5    1and local government funds, and contributions from nonprofit
2organizations and other private entities.end insert