Amended in Senate June 23, 2016

Amended in Senate September 1, 2015

Amended in Assembly June 1, 2015

Amended in Assembly May 4, 2015

Amended in Assembly March 26, 2015

California Legislature—2015–16 Regular Session

Assembly BillNo. 1014


Introduced by Assembly Member Thurmond

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(Coauthor: Assembly Member Bonta)

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(Coauthor: Senator Liu)

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February 26, 2015


An act to addbegin delete and repeal Section 48270 of the Education Code, relating to pupils.end deletebegin insert Article 10 (commencing with Section 33430) to Chapter 3 of Part 20 of Division 2 of Title 2 of, and to repeal Section 33434 of, the Education Code, relating to education finance.end insert

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL’S DIGEST

AB 1014, as amended, Thurmond. begin deletePupils: truancy: Our Children’s Success-The Early Intervention Attendance Pilot Grant Program. end deletebegin insertEducation finance: Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Fund: Learning Communities for School Success Program.end insert

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Existing law, the Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Act, enacted by Proposition 47, as approved by the voters at the November 4, 2014, statewide general election, among other things, established the Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Fund, a continuously appropriated fund, which is funded by savings that accrue to the state from the implementation of the act. The act provides that, among other purposes, 25% of the funds shall be disbursed to the State Department of Education to administer a grant program to public agencies aimed at improving outcomes for public school pupils by reducing truancy and supporting pupils who are at risk of dropping out of school or are victims of crime.

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This bill would establish the Learning Communities for School Success Program for the purpose of implementing that grant program, subject to an appropriation to the Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Fund in the annual Budget Act or another measure for the purposes of the bill. The bill would specify the administrative duties and responsibilities of the department with respect to the program, including administering grants and coordinating assistance to local educational agencies, as defined. The bill would set forth criteria to guide the department in awarding grants under the program and would specify the purposes for which grant funds may be used. The bill would require the department to submit a final evaluation of the program to the Legislature on or before January 31, 2020.

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These provisions would become operative only if SB 527 of the 2015-16 Regular Session is chaptered and becomes operative on or before January 1, 2017.

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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.

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This bill would make various findings and declarations regarding truancy. The bill would establish the Our Children’s Success-The Early Intervention Attendance Pilot Grant Program under the administration of the State Department of Education. The program would provide grants to applicant public schools, school districts, and county offices of education seeking to resolve the attendance problems of pupils in kindergarten and grades 1 to 3, inclusive. The bill would provide that the above entities maintaining kindergarten or any of grades 1 to 3, inclusive, could apply for grants under the program. The bill would authorize the applications for grants submitted by the above entities to the department to reflect a plan including specified components.

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The bill would require the department to give priority in awarding grants to those applicants who demonstrate financial need for the grant and that have the highest truancy rates in urban areas, rural areas, and suburban areas, respectively. The bill would require the grants to be awarded for 3 years and to be used to address attendance problems of pupils in kindergarten and grades 1 to 3, inclusive, pursuant to the plans submitted by the applicant. The bill would provide that each grant awarded be for no more than $500,000 and would require the applicant to provide a 20% match. The bill would require an applicant receiving a grant to submit a report, containing specified data, to the department at the conclusion of the grant. The bill would require the department to submit a report, on or before January 1, 2021, to the respective appropriations committees and education committees of the Assembly and the Senate, and would require this report to include a recommendation on whether the grant program should continue. The bill would provide that the above provisions shall not be implemented unless there is an appropriation in the annual Budget Act or another statute, as provided. These provisions would be repealed on January 1, 2022.

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Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes. State-mandated local program: no.

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

P3    1begin insert

begin insertSECTION 1.end insert  

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The Legislature finds and declares all of the
2following:

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3
(a) The Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Act, approved as
4Proposition 47 by the voters at the November 4, 2014, statewide
5general election (the act), made significant changes to the state’s
6criminal justice system by reducing the penalties for certain
7nonviolent, nonserious drug and property crimes. The act requires
8the state savings realized from these criminal justice changes to
9be deposited in the Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Fund and
10spent on prevention and support services with the intent of reducing
11crime, including truancy and dropout prevention.

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12
(b) The act requires 25 percent of the moneys deposited in the
13Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Fund to be allocated to the State
14Department of Education for administration of a grant program
P4    1to reduce truancy and support pupils who are at risk of dropping
2out of school or who are victims of crime.

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3
(c) In accordance with the act, the funding provided to K-12
4education should be used to help build the capacity of local
5educational agencies to identify and implement evidence-based,
6nonpunitive programs and practices to keep our most vulnerable
7pupils in school, consistent with each local educational agency’s
8local control and accountability plan, including, but not limited
9to, its goals for pupil engagement and school climate.

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10
(d) California needs to increase the knowledge base concerning
11which strategies are most effective for improving pupil success
12and eliminating the school-to-prison pipeline. One manner in
13which this can be accomplished is for the local educational
14agencies participating in the K-12 education grant program
15pursuant to the act to report and evaluate outcomes using multiple
16measures, while engaging in a broader community of practice that
17disseminates promising and proven strategies to local educational
18agencies statewide.

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19begin insert

begin insertSEC. 2.end insert  

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begin insertArticle 10 (commencing with Section 33430) is added
20to Chapter 3 of Part 20 of Division 2 of Title 2 of the end insert
begin insertEducation
21Code
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begin insert, to read:end insert

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22 

23Article begin insert10.end insert  The Learning Communities for School Success
24Program
25

 

26

begin insert33430.end insert  

The Learning Communities for School Success Program
27is hereby established for the purpose of implementing, pursuant
28to paragraph (1) of subdivision (a) of Section 7599.2 of the
29Government Code, the K-12 education portion of the Safe
30Neighborhoods and Schools Act, as approved as Proposition 47
31by the voters at the November 4, 2014, statewide general election.
32Through this program, the department shall administer grants and
33coordinate assistance to local educational agencies to support the
34local educational agencies in identifying and implementing
35evidence-based, nonpunitive programs and practices that are
36aligned with the goals for pupils contained in each of the local
37educational agency’s local control and accountability plan
38pursuant to Section 47606.5, 52060, or 52066, as applicable.

39

begin insert33431.end insert  

(a) A local educational agency that chooses to apply
40for funding pursuant to this article shall submit an application to
P5    1the department to receive a grant, in a format and by a date
2determined by the department. An application submitted to the
3department by a local educational agency shall include, at a
4minimum, all of the following:

5
(1) Information about the pupil and school needs within the
6local educational agency.

7
(2) The activities the local educational agency will undertake
8with the grant funding.

9
(3) How the activities specified in paragraph (2) support the
10local educational agency’s goals for pupils contained in its local
11control and accountability plan.

12
(4) How the local educational agency will measure outcomes
13associated with the activities specified in subdivision (e) and
14metrics reported in the local educational agency’s local control
15and accountability plan.

16
(b) An application shall be for three years of grant funding.
17Consistent with the provisions of this article, the department may
18establish requirements for grantees to meet at the end of the first
19and second years of funding in order to receive funding for the
20remaining grant period.

21
(c) The department shall determine eligibility for grants and
22the distribution of grant funding based on all of the following
23factors:

24
(1) Pupil and school needs the local educational agency will
25address with the grant funds.

26
(2) Number of pupils to be served with the grant funds.

27
(3) Number, size, and type of participating schools within the
28local educational agency.

29
(4) Any challenges the local educational agency experiences in
30building capacity for fulfilling the purposes of this article.

31
(5) The unique characteristics of small school districts, given
32their challenges with economies of scale and access to services in
33rural locations.

34
(d) (1) Before the initial application deadline, the department
35shall conduct targeted outreach to local educational agencies that
36are likely to be given priority pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section
3733432 and shall offer the local educational agencies technical
38assistance as they develop their grant applications.

39
(2) The department may provide technical assistance with
40application development to any local educational agency that
P6    1requests assistance. This may include assistance from external
2entities the department may contract with as part of the training
3and technical assistance structure established pursuant to Section
433433.

5
(e) The department shall issue application guidelines that
6include, at a minimum, information on the outcome metrics the
7department will use to evaluate the program. When determining
8outcome metrics, the department shall consider metrics currently
9being collected and used by existing federal, state, or local
10programs. Consistent with the objective of the Safe Neighborhoods
11and Schools Act to reduce crime, including truancy and dropout
12prevention, the department shall consider using metrics for pupil
13truancy and school dropout, among others.

14
(f) In meeting the requirements of this section, the department
15shall consult with stakeholders, including, but not limited to,
16representatives of local educational agencies, teachers and other
17school personnel, parents, advocacy organizations with experience
18working with target vulnerable populations, and parent- and
19youth-serving community-based organizations. It the intent of the
20Legislature that stakeholders provide input to the department on
21the design of the application and review process, including the
22size of the grant awards. The stakeholders shall not be involved
23in determining who will be awarded grants.

24

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(a) A local educational agency that receives a grant
25shall use the grant funds for planning, implementation, and
26evaluation of activities in support of evidence-based, nonpunitive
27programs and practices to keep the state’s most vulnerable pupils
28in school, consistent with the local educational agency’s goals for
29the pupil engagement and school climate state priorities as
30identified in its local control and accountability plan pursuant to
31Section 47606.5, 52060, or 52066, as applicable. These activities
32may include, but are not limited to, all of the following:

33
(1) Establishing a community school, as defined in Section
3433435.

35
(2) Implementing activities or programs to improve attendance
36and reduce chronic absenteeism, including, but not limited to,
37early warning systems or early intervention programs.

38
(3) Implementing restorative practices, restorative justice
39models, or other programs to improve retention rates, reduce
P7    1suspensions and other school removals, and reduce the referral
2of pupils to law enforcement agencies.

3
(4) Implementing activities that advance social-emotional
4learning, positive behavior interventions and supports, culturally
5responsive practices, and trauma-informed strategies.

6
(5) Establishing partnerships with community-based
7organizations or other relevant entities to support the
8implementation of evidence-based, nonpunitive approaches to
9further the goals of the program.

10
(b) In selecting grant recipients pursuant to this article, the
11department shall give priority to a local educational agency that
12meets any of the following criteria:

13
(1) (A) Has a high rate of chronic absenteeism, out-of-school
14suspension, or school dropout for the general pupil population or
15for a numerically significant pupil subgroup, as identified in a
16local control and accountability plan pursuant to paragraphs (2)
17and (3) of subdivision (a) of Section 52052.

18
(B) For purposes of this paragraph, “high rate” means a rate
19that exceeds the state average.

20
(2) Is located in a community with a high crime rate.

21
(3) Has a significant representation of foster youth among its
22pupil enrollment.

23
(c) A local educational agency that receives a grant shall
24provide a local contribution of matching expenditures equal to at
25least 20 percent of the total grant award. This local contribution
26can be from cash expenditures or in-kind contributions. A local
27educational agency is encouraged to exceed the 20-percent match
28requirement to enable the local educational agency to sustain the
29activities or programs established under this article beyond the
30three-year grant period.

31
(d) A local educational agency that receives a grant shall use
32the grant funds to supplement and not supplant the existing
33resources the local educational agency currently allocates for
34purposes specified in this article.

35
(e) A local educational agency shall not use grant funds to pay
36for law enforcement activities, including personnel or equipment.

37

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(a) The department shall use the funding the Safe
38Neighborhoods and Schools Act authorizes for administrative costs
39pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 7599.2 of the Government
40Code, which is no more than 5 percent of the annual funding the
P8    1department receives from the Safe Neighborhoods and Schools
2Fund, for the administrative costs of implementing this article,
3including, but not limited to, administering grant awards,
4coordinating the training and technical assistance structure
5described in subdivision (b), and completing the evaluation
6pursuant to Section 33434.

7
(b) The department shall establish a structure to deliver training
8and technical assistance to grantees using regional workshops
9and technical assistance providers that have expertise on pupil
10engagement, school climate, truancy reduction, and supporting
11pupils who are at risk of dropping out of school or who are victims
12of crime. The department may contract with those providers to
13assist the grantees as well as to serve as a resource for other local
14educational agencies that may use their own funding sources to
15engage in this community of practice.

16

begin insert33434.end insert  

(a) A local educational agency that receives grant
17funding pursuant to this article shall evaluate and report to the
18governing board of the school district, the county board of
19education, or its chartering authority, as applicable, and the
20department the results of the activities it undertakes pursuant to
21this article. The department shall compile information from grantee
22reports as part of an overall evaluation of the grant program
23implementation. The department shall assess the benefits of
24participation in the program and identify the pupil and school
25outcomes associated with the strategies and programs implemented
26by grantees. The department shall submit an interim report of
27preliminary evaluation findings to the Legislature on or before
28January 31, 2019, and a final evaluation report to the Legislature
29on or before January 31, 2020.

30
(b) (1) A report to be submitted pursuant to subdivision (a)
31shall be submitted in compliance with Section 9795 of the
32Government Code.

33
(2) Pursuant to Section 10231.5 of the Government Code, this
34section is repealed on January 31, 2024.

35

begin insert33435.end insert  

For purposes of this article, the following definitions
36apply:

37
(a) “Community school” means a public school that participates
38in a community-based effort to coordinate and integrate
39educational, developmental, family, health, and other
40comprehensive services through community-based organizations
P9    1and public and private partnerships with one or more community
2partners for the delivery of community services that may be
3provided at a schoolsite to pupils, families, and community
4members.

5
(b) “Local educational agency” means a school district, county
6office of education, or charter school.

7

begin insert33436.end insert  

This article shall not become operative unless funds
8are appropriated in the annual Budget Act or another statute to
9the Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Fund in accordance with the
10Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Act for the purposes specified
11in this article.

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begin insertSEC. 3.end insert  

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begin insertSections 1 and 2 of this act shall become operative
13only if Senate Bill No. 527 of the 2015-16 Regular Session is
14chaptered and becomes operative on or before January 1, 2017.end insert

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15

SECTION 1.  

The Legislature finds and declares all of the
16following:

17(a) Only 17 percent of chronically absent kindergartners and
18first graders in California read proficiently by grade 3 and pupils
19who do not read proficiently by grade 3 are four times more likely
20to drop out of school. Children who drop out of school cost the
21state more than $46 billion each year, including more than $1
22billion in juvenile crime costs alone.

23(b) Ninety percent of elementary school pupils with severe
24attendance problems, missing 36 or more days in the school year,
25are estimated to be from low-income families.

26(c) In the 2013-14 school year, 250,000 elementary school
27pupils and 1 in 10 pupils from low-income families were
28chronically absent, missing 10 percent or more of the school year.

29(d) In the 2013-14 school year, African American elementary
30school pupils were the highest subgroup, including homeless pupils,
31to be truant and these pupils are chronically truant at four times
32the rate of all other pupils.

33(e) In the 2012-13 school year, one in five, or 744,085,
34elementary school pupils were truant, an increase of 1.2 percent
35from the 2011-12 school year.

36(f) In the 2010-11 school year, California schools lost $1.4
37billion in average daily attendance funding due to pupil absences
38and California school districts have lost over $3.5 billion between
39the 2010-11 and 2013-14 school years.

40

SEC. 2.  

Section 48270 is added to the Education Code, to read:

P10   1

48270.  

(a) Our Children’s Success-The Early Intervention
2Attendance Pilot Grant Program is hereby established under the
3administration of the department. This grant program is established
4for the purpose of helping public schools resolve the attendance
5problems of pupils in kindergarten and grades 1 to 3, inclusive.

6(b) A public school, school district, or county office of education
7maintaining kindergarten or any of grades 1 to 3, inclusive, seeking
8to participate in the grant program established by this section may
9apply to the department for a grant pursuant to this section. An
10application submitted by a public school, school district, or county
11office of education to the department under this subdivision may
12reflect a plan that includes, but is not necessarily limited to, all of
13the following components:

14(1) Establishment of a training program for key school officials
15and attendance staff to identify pupils with chronic attendance
16problems upon their second occurrence of tardiness or absence in
17a school year, and the mailing of attendance letters to the pupil’s
18home in a timely manner.

19(2) Establishment of a phone call outreach program, including
20a minimum of two calls from a school official, not limited to a
21recording, to follow up on those pupils whose attendance problems
22continue during that school year after the attendance letters are
23mailed.

24(3) Establishment of a parent advocate position or positions,
25designated for ongoing followup with the pupil and the parent
26throughout the school year to ensure the pupil’s continued
27consistent school attendance. The number of these parent advocate
28positions may vary according to the school’s needs, resources, and
29the parent advocate’s ability to manage the workload.

30(4) Establishment of an outreach worker position or positions
31whose primary job is assisting families with a child or children
32who have ongoing chronic attendance problems. The duties of an
33outreach worker include sending letters, making phone calls and
34home visits, and helping to connect the family to the appropriate
35local, state, or federal programs in order to resolve issues that are
36creating impediments to the child’s consistent attendance in school.
37The number of these outreach worker positions can vary according
38to the applicant’s needs, resources, and the outreach worker’s
39ability to manage the workload.

P11   1(5) Determining that the applicant’s plan is instituted, to the
2best of the applicant’s ability, before a pupil enters the school
3attendance review board process.

4(6) Establishment of a plan for teacher followup with pupils
5with chronic attendance problems to make up for lost instructional
6time.

7(7) Establishment of a plan to track both longitudinal, pupil
8level pupil attendance and aggregate data on tardiness and
9attendance throughout the school year to determine whether
10improvement has been made.

11(8) Establishment of a plan to assess trends in attendance and
12chronic absence rates among pupils who are English learners,
13eligible for a free or reduced-price meal, or are foster youth, as
14those terms are defined in Section 42238.01, and target resources
15towards those groups of pupils who are most at risk for ongoing
16attendance problems.

17(9) (A) Submission of deidentified, aggregate data on chronic
18absence and attendance rates to the Bureau of Children’s Justice
19within the Department of Justice for inclusion in the report “In
20School + On Track” prepared by the Office of the Attorney
21General.

22(B) For purposes of this paragraph, “deidentified” means
23information that cannot be used to identify an individual pupil.

24(c) The applicant shall include an estimate for the amount of
25the grant needed in the application and shall be required to provide
2620 percent matching funds for any amount requested to encourage
27applicants to apply for less than the maximum grant amount
28specified in paragraph (2) of subdivision (f).

29(d) The grant program established by this section shall not be
30construed as a replacement of, or a substitution for, the school
31attendance review board process as described in this article.

32(e) (1) The department shall award grants under this section
33based on the selection criteria in paragraph (2).

34(2) The department shall give priority to those applicants who
35demonstrate financial need for the grant and with the highest
36truancy rates in each of the following areas:

37 (A) Urban areas.

38 (B) Rural areas.

39(C) Suburban areas.

P12   1(f) (1) Grants under this section shall be awarded for three
2years, and shall be used to address the attendance problems of
3pupils in kindergarten and in grades 1 to 3, inclusive, pursuant to
4the plans submitted by the applicant under subdivision (b).

5(2) Each grant awarded pursuant to this section shall be for no
6more than five hundred thousand dollars ($500,000).

7(3) The department shall provide no less than 10 grants.

8(4) The department shall award no more than five million dollars
9($5,000,000) in total grant moneys.

10(g) An applicant that receives a grant under this section shall
11submit a report to the department at the conclusion of the grant.
12This report shall specify how the grant funds were used and the
13strategies employed to address pupil attendance problems. The
14report shall also include pupil attendance data measured both before
15and after the implementation of the grant.

16(h) On or before January 1, 2021, the department shall submit
17a report to the respective committees on appropriations and
18committees on education of the Assembly and the Senate. This
19report shall evaluate the strategies and the attendance data of the
20applicants that received funds from the grant program established
21under this section. The report shall include, but not necessarily be
22limited to, a recommendation on whether the grant program should
23continue.

24(i) This section shall not be implemented unless there is an
25appropriation in the annual Budget Act or another statute for these
26purposes. Notwithstanding any other law, funding for this program
27shall not be from savings identified pursuant to the Safe
28Neighborhoods and Schools Act, approved as Proposition 47 by
29the voters at the November 4, 2014, statewide general election.

30(j) This section shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2022,
31and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, that
32is enacted before January 1, 2022, deletes or extends that date.

end delete


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