GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF NORTH CAROLINA

SESSION 2013

H                                                                                                                                                    1

HOUSE BILL 960

 

 

Short Title:        Innovation Through Local Schools.

(Public)

Sponsors:

Representative Elmore (Primary Sponsor).

For a complete list of Sponsors, refer to the North Carolina General Assembly Web Site.

Referred to:

Education.

April 18, 2013

A BILL TO BE ENTITLED

AN ACT to make the K-12 educational system more flexible, adaptable, and accountable in order to foster innovation, creativity, and workforce development for a changing economy.

The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:

SECTION 1.(a)  Chapter 115C of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new subchapter to read:

"Subchapter 3A. Innovation through Local Schools.

"Article 7A.

"Curriculum Implementation Plans.

" 115C-26.1.  Purpose of subchapter.

(a)        The purpose of this Article is to make the K-12 educational system more flexible, adaptable, and accountable in order to foster innovation, creativity, and workforce development for a changing economy. To create flexibility and innovation, it is the intent of the General Assembly that the public schools:

(1)        Move away from a top-down model of administration of curriculum to a bottom-up approach that involves local parents, businesses, school boards, and superintendents in tailoring curriculum to meet local economic needs and the needs of students.

(2)        Receive limited direction from the Department of Public Instruction that deals primarily with basic functions and collection of statewide data, thus allowing an environment of new and different ideas across the State.

(3)        Measure accountability primarily at the local level but administer nationally accepted tests to permit comparisons with other states.

" 115C-26.2.  Curriculum implementation plans.

(a)        Local school administrative units shall develop curriculum implementation plans that include the following:

(1)        The mission and belief statements of the local school administrative unit. - The local board of education, in coordination with the superintendent, shall develop an overall mission statement for the local school administrative unit. The schools, in coordination with the superintendent, shall develop belief statements based on local needs, the student population served by those schools, and the concerns of parents.

(2)        Curriculum. - The local school administrative unit, under the direction of the superintendent, shall develop curriculum in addition to the basic State curriculum. The curriculum implementation plan shall include:

a.         A description of locally developed courses, the students to be served in those courses, and the anticipated academic outcomes.

b.         A plan for alternative learning programs or alternative schools developed in accordance with G.S. 115C-105.47A.

c.         Any plan developed in accordance with Part 7 of Article 16 of Chapter 115C of the General Statutes to provide extended services programs that will expand students' opportunities for educational success through high-quality, integrated access to instructional programming during nonschool hours.

(3)        Instruction. - The local school administrative unit shall be responsible for instructional models used in its schools. The local school administrative unit shall provide training and staff development for its personnel that aligns with its mission and belief statements and shall report to the Department of Public Instruction on that training and staff development.

(4)        Formative/summative assessment and evaluation. - The formative/summative assessment and evaluation component of the plan shall include:

a.         Summative assessments for subjects taught in unit. These assessments may vary based on the needs of the individual schools and programs.

b.         Administration of the following tests:

1.         A nationally accepted test adopted by the State Board of Education in accordance with G.S. 115C-174.11(c) to all students in grades three and five.

2.         The Pre-ACT test in grades eight, 10, and 11.

3.         The ACT test in high school.

            The local school administrative unit shall report the results of these tests to the State Superintendent of Public Instruction.

c.         A system for evaluating teachers, principals, and other personnel designed by the superintendent. Under the plan, local supplements may be used to create and implement a merit-based pay system.

(5)        Resources/capital improvement plan/budget. - The resources/capital improvement plan/budget shall include the following:

a.         A report on student population and growth predictions, numbers of teachers and their job descriptions, central office staff members and their job descriptions, numbers of support personnel and their job descriptions, and other relevant information.

b.         A report on supplies/equipment in the system, including books, technical equipment, and program specific equipment.

c.         A current capital improvement plan that includes the condition of buildings and plans for improvements such as remodels, upgrades, and new construction.

d.         A long-range plan for meeting school facility needs, developed and submitted to the State Board of Education in accordance with G.S. 115C-521(a).

e.         A comprehensive policy for inventory control for school technology.

f.          A line item budget prepared in accordance with Part 2 of Article 31 of Chapter 115C of the General Statutes.

(6)        Community communications. - Community communications shall consist of:

a.         A report on methods used by the local school administrative unit to communicate with the public, such as press releases, phone trees, public forums, and e-mails.

b.         A plan for improving communication to gain stakeholder support.

c.         A plan for increased community involvement in the public schools and community use of public school facilities. The plan shall include guidelines, programs, and policies to do the following:

1.         Encourage the use of public school facilities by governmental, charitable, or civic organizations for activities within the community.

2.         Utilize the talents and abilities of volunteers within the community for the enhancement of public school programs, including tutoring, counseling, and cultural programs and projects.

3.         Increase communications between the staff and faculty of the public schools, other community institutions and agencies, and citizens in the community.

4.         Develop and utilize community-based academic booster organizations.

5.         Implement policies and procedures for approving the use of volunteer organizations and for approving the use of individual volunteers.

6.         Implement policies and procedures designed to make information available to parents and students about tutoring and other academic support services that are available to students in the community or through school volunteers or other community organizations.

d.         An annual report on acts of violence in the schools.

(7)        Statement of local economic impact. - The statement of local economic impact shall include:

a.         A report on economic issues facing the community and the manner in which these issues were determined.

b.         A report on programs developed to address these issues.

c.         The process developed to facilitate integration of these local economic issues into all course work.

(8)        Reflections. - The reflections shall be reviewed annually and shall include:

a.         An analysis of local student performance and national test data that includes areas needing improvement and strategies for addressing them.

b.         Ideas for future programing.

" 115C-26.3.  Responsibilities of the local board of education with regard to the curriculum innovation plan.

The local board of education shall:

(1)        Develop a curriculum innovation plan every five years in collaboration with the local superintendent and update the plan annually with any significant modifications.

(2)        Involve the community, including parents, educators, the business community, and others in the development of the plan and updates to the plan.

(3)        Submit the plan to the county commissioners.

(4)        Ensure that the plan is readily available to the general public.

(5)        Submit the plan to the State Board of Education for approval.

(6)        Ensure that the plan is appropriately administered by the superintendent.

" 115C-26.4.  Approval of the curriculum innovation plan by the State Board of Education; audit of plan implementation by the Department of Public Instruction; revocation of plans.

(a)        The State Board of Education shall approve a curriculum innovation plan unless the Board, in its discretion, determines the plan is not instructionally sound. If the Board does not approve the plan, it shall make findings regarding the deficiencies in the plan and give the local school administrative unit an opportunity to modify and resubmit it for approval.

(b)        At the request of a local school administrative unit, the Department of Public Instruction may provide technical assistance on the development or implementation of a curriculum implementation plan.

(c)        The Superintendent of Public Instruction shall send an auditing team to a local school administrative unit (i) at the request of the State Board of Education, (ii) as otherwise required by law, or (iii) in the Superintendent's discretion.

(d)        The State Board of Education may revoke its approval of a curriculum implementation plan if the local school administrative unit is not properly implementing the plan, test results indicate that the plan is not working, there are fiscal irregularities in the local school administrative unit, or otherwise in the discretion of the Board.

The powers given to the Board and the auditing team under G.S. 115C-105.38 and G.S. 115C-105.39 apply to any local school administrative unit for which approval is revoked."

SECTION 1.(b)  Local boards of education shall implement curriculum implementation plans beginning with the 2014-2015 school year.

SECTION 2.  G.S. 115C-11(e) is repealed.

SECTION 3.  G.S. 115C-12 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-12.  Powers and duties of the Board generally.

The general supervision and administration of the free public school system shall be vested in the State Board of Education. The State Board of Education shall establish policy for the system of free public schools, subject to laws enacted by the General Assembly. The powers and duties of the State Board of Education are defined as follows:

(1a)      To Submit a Budget Request to the Director of the Budget. - The Board shall submit a budget request to the Director of the Budget in accordance with G.S. 143C-3-3. In addition to the information requested by the Director of the Budget, the Board shall provide an analysis relating each of its requests for expansion funds to anticipated improvements in student performance.requests.

(7)        Power to Alter the Boundaries of City School Administrative Units and to Approve Agreements for the Consolidation and Merger of School Administrative Units Located in the Same County. - The Board shall have authority, in its discretion, to alter the boundaries of city school administrative units and to approve agreements submitted by county and city boards of education requesting the merger of two or more contiguous city school administrative units and the merger of city school administrative units with county school administrative units and the consolidation of all the public schools in the respective units under the administration of one board of education: Provided, that such merger of units and reorganization of school units shall not have the effect of abolishing any special taxes that may have been voted in any such units.

(9)        Miscellaneous Powers and Duties. - All the powers and duties exercised by the State Board of Education shall be in conformity with the Constitution and subject to such laws as may be enacted from time to time by the General Assembly. Among such duties are:

a.         To certify and regulate the grade and salary of teachers and other school employees.

b.         To adopt and supply textbooks.

c.         To adopt rules requiring all local boards of education to implement the Basic Education Program on an incremental basis within funds appropriated for that purpose by the General Assembly and by units of local government. Beginning with the 1991-92 school year, the rules shall require each local school administrative unit to implement fully the standard course of study in every school in the State in accordance with the Basic Education Program so that every student in the State shall have equal access to the curriculum as provided in the Basic Education Program and the standard course of study. State.

                  The Board shall establish benchmarks by which to measure the progress that each local board of education has made in implementing the Basic Education Program.

c1.       To issue an annual "report card" for the State and for each local school administrative unit, assessing each unit's efforts to improve student performance based on the growth in performance of the students in each school and taking into account progress over the previous years' level of performance and the State's performance in comparison with other states. This assessment shall take into account factors that have been shown to affect student performance and that the State Board considers relevant to assess the State's efforts to improve student performance. As a part of the annual "report card" for each local school administrative unit, the State Board shall award an overall numerical school performance score on a scale of zero to 100 and a corresponding letter grade of A, B, C, D, or F earned by each school within the local school administrative unit. The school performance score and grade shall reflect student performance on annual subject-specific assessments, college and workplace readiness measures, and graduation rates. For schools serving students in any grade from kindergarten to eighth grade, separate performance scores and grades shall also be awarded based on the school performance in reading and mathematics respectively. The annual "report card" for schools serving students in third grade also shall include the number and percentage of third grade students who (i) take and pass the alternative assessment of reading comprehension; (ii) were retained in third grade for not demonstrating reading proficiency as indicated in G.S. 115C-83.7(a); and (iii) were exempt from mandatory third grade retention by category of exemption as listed in G.S. 115C-83.7(b).

c2.       Repealed by Session Laws 1995 (Regular Session, 1996), c. 716, s. 1.

c3.       To develop a system of school building improvement reports for each school building. The purpose of school building improvement reports is to measure improvement in the growth in student performance at each school building from year to year, not to compare school buildings. The Board shall include in the building reports any factors shown to affect student performance that the Board considers relevant to assess a school's efforts to improve student performance. Local school administrative units shall produce and make public their school building improvement reports by March 15, 1997, for the 1995-96 school year, by October 15, 1997, for the 1996-97 school year, and annually thereafter. Each report shall be based on building-level data for the prior school year.

c4.       To develop guidelines, procedures, and rules to establish, implement, and enforce the School-Based Management and Accountability Program under Article 8B of this Chapter in order to improve student performance, increase local flexibility and control, and promote economy and efficiency.

d.         To formulate rules and regulations for the enforcement of the compulsory attendance law.

e.         To manage and operate a system of insurance for public school property, as provided in Article 38 of this Chapter.

In making substantial policy changes in administration, curriculum, or programs the Board should conduct hearings throughout the regions of the State, whenever feasible, in order that the public may be heard regarding these matters.

(9a),     (9b)  Repealed by Session Laws 2005-458, s. 1, effective October 2, 2005.

(9c)      Power to Develop Content Standards and Exit Standards. - The Board shall develop a comprehensive plan to revise content standards and the standard course of study in the core academic areas of reading, writing, mathematics, science, history, geography, and civics. The Board shall involve and survey a representative sample of parents, teachers, and the public to help determine academic content standard priorities and usefulness of the content standards. A full review of available and relevant academic content standards that are rigorous, specific, sequenced, clear, focused, and measurable, whenever possible, shall be a part of the process of the development of content standards. The revised content standards developed in the core academic areas shall (i) reflect high expectations for students and an in-depth mastery of the content; (ii) be clearly grounded in the content of each academic area; (iii) be defined grade-by-grade and course-by-course; (iv) be understandable to parents and teachers; (v) be developed in full recognition of the time available to teach the core academic areas at each grade level; and (vi) be measurable, whenever possible, in a reliable, valid, and efficient manner measureable for accountability purposes.

High school course content standards shall include the knowledge and skills necessary to pursue further postsecondary education or to attain employment in the 21st century economy. The high school course content standards also shall be aligned with the minimum undergraduate course requirements for admission to the constituent institutions of The University of North Carolina. The Board may develop exit standards that will be required for high school graduation.

The Board also shall develop and implement an ongoing process to align State programs and support materials with the revised academic content standards for each core academic area on a regular basis. Alignment shall include revising textbook criteria, support materials, State tests, teacher and school administrator preparation, and ongoing professional development programs to be compatible with content standards. The Board shall develop and make available to teachers and parents support materials, including teacher and parent guides, for academic content standards. The State Board of Education shall work in collaboration with the Board of Governors of The University of North Carolina to ensure that teacher and school administrator degree programs, ongoing professional development, and other university activity in the State's public schools align with the State Board's priorities.

(10)      Power to Provide for Programs or Projects in the Cultural and Fine Arts Areas. - The Board is authorized and empowered, in its discretion, to make provisions for special programs or projects of a cultural and fine arts nature for the enrichment and strengthening of educational opportunities for the children of the State.

For this purpose, the Board may use funds received from gifts or grants and, with the approval of the Director of the Budget, may use State funds which the Board may find available in any budget administered by the Board.

(12)      Duty to Provide for Sports Medicine and Emergency Paramedical Program. - The State Board of Education is authorized and directed to develop a comprehensive plan to train and make available to the public schools personnel who shall have major responsibility for exercising preventive measures against sports related deaths and injuries and for providing sports medicine and emergency paramedical services for injuries that occur in school related activities. The plan shall include, but is not limited to, the training, assignment of responsibilities, and appropriate additional reimbursement for individuals participating in the program.

The State Board of Education is authorized and directed to develop an implementation schedule and a program funding formula that will enable each high school to have a qualified sports medicine and emergency paramedical program by July 1, 1984.

The State Board of Education is authorized and directed to establish minimum educational standards necessary to enable individuals serving as sports medicine and emergency paramedical staff to provide such services, including first aid and emergency life saving skills, to students participating in school activities.

(15)      Duty to Develop Noncertified Personnel Position Evaluation Descriptions. - The Board is authorized and directed to develop position evaluation descriptions covering those positions in local school administrative units for which certification by the State Board of Education is not normally a prerequisite. The position evaluation descriptions required in this subdivision are to be used by local boards of education as the basis for assignment of noncertified employees to an appropriate pay grade in accordance with salary grades and ranges adopted by the State Board of Education. No appropriations are required by this subdivision.

(16)      Power with Regard to Salary Schedules. - The Board shall provide for sick leave with pay for all public school employees in accordance with the provisions of this Chapter and shall promulgate rules and regulations providing for necessary substitutes on account of sick leave and other teacher absences.

a.         Support personnel refers to all public school employees who are not required by statute or regulation to be certified in order to be employed. The State Board of Education is authorized and empowered to adopt all necessary rules for full implementation of all schedules to the extent that State funds are made available for support personnel.

b.         Salary schedules for the following public school support personnel shall be adopted by the State Board of Education: school finance officer, office support personnel, teacher assistants, maintenance supervisors, custodial personnel, and transportation personnel. The Board shall classify these support positions in terms of uniform pay grades included in the salary schedule of the State Personnel Commission.

By the end of the third payroll period of the 1995-96 fiscal year, local boards of education shall place State-allotted office support personnel, teacher assistants, and custodial personnel on the salary schedule adopted by the State Board of Education so that the average salary paid is the State-allotted amount for the category. In placing employees on the salary schedule, the local board shall consider the education, training, and experience of each employee, including experience in other local school administrative units. It is the intent of the General Assembly that a local school administrative unit not fail to employ an employee who was employed for the prior school year in order to implement the provisions of this sub-subdivision. A local board of education is in compliance with this sub-subdivision if the average salary paid is at least ninety-five percent (95%) of the State-allotted amount for the category at the end of the third payroll period of the 1995-96 fiscal year, and at least ninety-eight percent (98%) of the State-allotted amount for the category at the end of the third payroll period of each subsequent fiscal year. The Department of Public Instruction shall provide technical assistance to local school administrative units regarding the implementation of this sub-subdivision.

c.         Salary schedules for other support personnel, including but not limited to maintenance and school food service personnel, shall be adopted by the State Board of Education. The Board shall classify these support positions in terms of uniform pay grades included in the salary schedule of the State Personnel Commission. These schedules shall apply if the local board of education does not adopt a salary schedule of its own for personnel paid from other than State appropriations.

(18)      Duty to Develop and Implement a Uniform Education Reporting System, Which Shall Include Standards and Procedures System for Collecting Fiscal and Personnel Information. -

a.         The State Board of Education shall adopt standards and procedures for local school administrative units to provide timely, accurate, and complete fiscal and personnel information, including payroll information, on all school personnel. All local school administrative units shall comply with these standards and procedures by the beginning of the 1987-88 school year.

b.         The State Board of Education shall develop and implement a Uniform Education Reporting System that shall include requirements for collecting, processing, and reporting fiscal, personnel, and student data, by means of electronic transfer of data files from local computers to the State Computer Center through the State Communications Network. All local school administrative units shall comply with the requirements of the Uniform Education Reporting System by the beginning of the 1989-90 school year.

c.         The State Board of Education shall comply with the provisions of G.S. 116-11(10a) to plan and implement an exchange of information between the public schools and the institutions of higher education in the State. The State Board of Education shall require local boards of education to provide to the parents of children at a school all information except for confidential information received about that school from institutions of higher education pursuant to G.S. 116-11(10a) and to make that information available to the general public.

d.         The State Board of Education shall modify the Uniform Education Reporting System to provide clear, accurate, and standard information on the use of funds at the unit and school level. The plan shall provide information that will enable the General Assembly to determine State, local, and federal expenditures for personnel at the unit and school level. The plan also shall allow the tracking of expenditures for textbooks, educational supplies and equipment, capital outlay, at-risk students, and other purposes. The revised Uniform Education Reporting System shall be implemented beginning with the 1999-2000 school year.

(19)      Duty to Identify Required Reports and to Eliminate Unnecessary Reports and Paperwork. - Prior to the beginning of each school year, the State Board of Education shall identify all reports that are required at the State level for the school year.

The State Board of Education shall adopt policies to ensure that local school administrative units are not required by the State Board of Education, the State Superintendent, or the Department of Public Instruction staff to (i) provide information that is already available on the student information management system or housed within the Department of Public Instruction; (ii) provide the same written information more than once during a school year unless the information has changed during the ensuing period; or (iii) complete forms, for children with disabilities, that are not necessary to ensure compliance with the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Notwithstanding the foregoing, the State Board may require information available on its student information management system or require the same information twice if the State Board can demonstrate a compelling need and can demonstrate there is not a more expeditious manner of getting the information.

The State Board shall permit schools and local school administrative units to submit all reports to the Department of Public Instruction electronically.

The State Board of Education, in collaboration with the education roundtables within the Department of Public Instruction, shall consolidate all plans that affect the school community, including school improvement plans. The consolidated plan shall be posted on each school's Web site for easy access by the public and by school personnel.

The State Board shall report to the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee by November 15 of each year on the reports it has consolidated or eliminated for the upcoming school year.

(21)      Duty to Monitor Acts of School Violence. - The State Board of Education shall monitor and compile an annual report on acts of violence in the public schools. The State Board shall adopt standard definitions for acts of school violence and shall require local boards of education to report them to the State Board in a standard format adopted by the State Board. The State Board shall submit its report on acts of violence in the public schools to the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee by March 15 of each year.

(22)      Duty to Monitor the Decisions of Teachers to Leave the Teaching Profession. - The State Board of Education shall monitor and compile an annual report on the decisions of teachers to leave the teaching profession. The State Board shall adopt standard procedures for each local board of education to use in requesting the information from teachers who are not continuing to work as teachers in the local school administrative unit and shall require each local board of education to report the information to the State Board in a standard format adopted by the State Board.

(23)      Power to Adopt Eligibility Rules for Interscholastic Athletic Competition. - The State Board of Education shall adopt rules governing interscholastic athletic activities conducted by local boards of education, including eligibility for student participation. With regard to middle schools and high schools, the rules shall provide for the following:

c.         Each school local school administrative unit shall develop a venue specific emergency action plan to deal with serious injuries and acute medical conditions in which the condition of the patient may deteriorate rapidly. The plan shall include a delineation of roles, methods of communication, available emergency equipment, and access to and plan for emergency transport. This plan must be (i) in writing, (ii) reviewed by an athletic trainer licensed in North Carolina, (iii) approved by the principal of the school, (iv) (iii) distributed to all appropriate personnel, (v) (iv) posted conspicuously at all venues, and (vi) (v) reviewed and rehearsed annually by all licensed athletic trainers, first responders, coaches, school nurses, athletic directors, and volunteers for interscholastic athletic activities.

The State Board of Education may authorize a designated organization to apply and enforce the Board's rules governing participation in interscholastic athletic activities at the high school level.

(24)      Duty to Develop Standards for Alternative Learning Programs, Provide Technical Assistance on Implementation of Programs, and Evaluate Programs. - The State Board of Education shall adopt standards for assigning students to alternative learning programs. These standards shall include (i) a description of the programs and services that are recommended to be provided in alternative learning programs and (ii) a process for ensuring that an assignment is appropriate for the student and that the student's parents are involved in the decision. The State Board also shall adopt policies that define what constitutes an alternative school and an alternative learning program.

The State Board of Education shall also adopt standards to require that local school administrative units shall use (i) the teachers allocated for students assigned to alternative learning programs pursuant to the regular teacher allotment and (ii) the teachers allocated for students assigned to alternative learning programs only to serve the needs of these students.

The State Board of Education shall provide technical support to local school administrative units to assist them in developing and implementing plans and proposals for alternative learning programs.

The State Board shall evaluate the effectiveness of alternative learning programs and, in its discretion, of any other programs funded from the Alternative Schools/At-Risk Student allotment. Local school administrative units shall report to the State Board of Education on how funds in the Alternative Schools/At-Risk Student allotment are spent and shall otherwise cooperate with the State Board of Education in evaluating the alternative learning programs. As part of its evaluation of the effectiveness of these programs, the State Board shall, through the application of the accountability system developed under G.S. 115C-105.35, measure the educational performance and growth of students placed in alternative schools and alternative programs. If appropriate, the Board may modify this system to adapt to the specific characteristics of these schools. Also as part of its evaluation, the State Board shall evaluate its standards adopted under this subdivision and make any necessary changes to those standards based on strategies that have been proven successful in improving student achievement and shall report to the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee by April 15, 2006 to determine if any changes are necessary to improve the implementation of successful alternative learning programs and alternative schools.

(25)      Duty to Report to Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee. - Upon the request of the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee, the State Board shall examine and evaluate issues, programs, policies, and fiscal information, and shall make reports to that Committee. Furthermore, beginning October 15, 1997, and annually thereafter, the State Board shall submit reports to that Committee regarding the continued implementation of Chapter 716 of the 1995 Session Laws, 1996 Regular Session. Each report shall include information regarding the composition and activity of assistance teams, schools that received incentive awards, schools identified as low-performing, school improvement plans found to significantly improve student performance, personnel actions taken in low-performing schools, and recommendations for additional legislation to improve student performance and increase local flexibility.

(27a)    Reducing School Dropout Rates. - The State Board of Education shall develop a statewide plan to improve the State's tracking of dropout data so that accurate and useful comparisons can be made over time. The plan shall include, at a minimum, how dropouts are counted and the methodology for calculating the dropout rate, the ability to track students movements among schools and districts, and the ability to provide information on who drops out and why.

(30)      Duty to Adopt Model Guidelines and Policies for the Establishment of Local Task Forces on Closing the Academic Achievement Gap. - The State Board shall adopt a Model for local school administrative units to use as a guideline to establish local task forces on closing the academic achievement gap at the discretion of the local board. The purpose of each task force is to advise and work with its local board of education and administration on closing the gap in academic achievement and on developing a collaborative plan for achieving that goal. The State Board shall consider the recommendations of the Commission on Improving the Academic Achievement of Minority and At-Risk Students to the 2001 Session of the General Assembly in establishing its guidelines.

(30a)    Duty to Assist Schools in Meeting Adequate Yearly Progress. - The State Board of Education shall:

a.         Identify which schools are meeting adequate yearly progress with subgroups as specified in the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001;

b.         Study the instructional, administrative, and fiscal practices and policies employed by the schools selected by the State Board of Education that are meeting adequate yearly progress specified in the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001; and

c.         Create assistance models for each subgroup based on the practices and policies used in schools that are meeting adequate yearly progress. The schools of education at the constituent institutions of The University of North Carolina, in collaboration with the University of North Carolina Center for School Leadership Development, shall assist the State Board of Education in developing these models; and

d.         Offer technical assistance based on these assistance models to local school administrative units not meeting adequate yearly progress, giving priority to those local school administrative units with high concentrations of schools that are not meeting adequate yearly progress. The State Board of Education shall determine the number of local school administrative units that can be served effectively in the first two years. This technical assistance shall include peer assistance and professional development by teachers, support personnel, and administrators in schools with subgroups that are meeting adequate yearly progress.

(31)      To Adopt Guidelines for Individual Diabetes Care Plans. - The State Board shall adopt guidelines for the development and implementation of individual diabetes care plans. The State Board shall consult with the North Carolina Diabetes Advisory Council established by the Department of Health and Human Services in the development of these guidelines. The State Board also shall consult with local school administrative unit employees who have been designated as responsible for coordinating their individual unit's efforts to comply with federal regulations adopted under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, 29 U.S.C. 794. In its development of these guidelines, the State Board shall refer to the guidelines recommended by the American Diabetes Association for the management of children with diabetes in the school and day care setting and shall consider recent resolutions by the United States Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights of investigations into complaints alleging discrimination against students with diabetes.

The guidelines adopted by the State Board shall include:

a.         Procedures for the development of an individual diabetes care plan at the written request of the student's parent or guardian, and involving the parent or guardian, the student's health care provider, the student's classroom teacher, the student if appropriate, the school nurse if available, and other appropriate school personnel.

b.         Procedures for regular review of an individual care plan.

c.         Information to be included in a diabetes care plan, including the responsibilities and appropriate staff development for teachers and other school personnel, an emergency care plan, the identification of allowable actions to be taken, the extent to which the student is able to participate in the student's diabetes care and management, and other information necessary for teachers and other school personnel in order to offer appropriate assistance and support to the student. The State Board shall ensure that the information and allowable actions included in a diabetes care plan as required in this subdivision meet or exceed the American Diabetes Association's recommendations for the management of children with diabetes in the school and day care setting.

d.         Information and staff development to be made available to teachers and other school personnel in order to appropriately support and assist students with diabetes.

The State Board shall ensure that these guidelines are updated as necessary and shall ensure that the guidelines and any subsequent changes are published and disseminated to local school administrative units.

(32)      Duty to Encourage Early Entry of Motivated Students into Four-Year College Programs. - The State Board of Education, in cooperation with the Education Cabinet, shall work with local school administrative units, the constituent institutions of The University of North Carolina, local community colleges, and private colleges and universities to (i) encourage early entry of motivated students into four-year college programs and to (ii) ensure that there are opportunities at four-year institutions for academically talented high school students to get an early start on college coursework, either at nearby institutions or through distance learning.

The State Board of Education shall also adopt policies directing school guidance counselors to make ninth grade students aware of the potential to complete the high school courses required for college entry in a three-year period.

(33)      Duty to Develop Recommended Programs for Use in Schools on Memorial Day. - The State Board of Education shall develop recommended instructional programs that enable students to gain a better understanding of the meaning and importance of Memorial Day. All schools, especially schools that hold school on Memorial Day, shall instruct students on the significance of Memorial Day.

(34)      Duty to Protect the Health of School-Age Children From Toxicants at School. - The State Board shall address public health and environmental issues in the classroom and on school grounds by doing all of the following:

a.         Develop guidelines for sealing existing arsenic-treated wood in playground equipment or establish a time line for removing existing arsenic-treated wood on playgrounds and testing the soil on school grounds for contamination caused by the leaching of arsenic-treated wood in other areas where children may be at particularly high risk of exposure.

b.         Establish guidelines to reduce students' exposure to diesel emissions that can occur as a result of unnecessary school bus idling, nose-to-tail parking, and inefficient route assignments.

c.         Study methods for mold and mildew prevention and mitigation and incorporate recommendations into the public school facilities guidelines as needed.

d.         Establish guidelines for Integrated Pest Management consistent with the policy of The North Carolina School Boards Association, Inc., as published in 2004. These guidelines may be updated as needed to reflect changes in technology.

e.         Establish guidelines for notification of students' parents, guardians, or custodians as well as school staff of pesticide use on school grounds.

(37)      To Adopt Guidelines for Fitness Testing. - The State Board of Education shall adopt guidelines for the development and implementation of evidence-based fitness testing for students statewide in grades kindergarten through eight.

(38)      Repealed by Session Laws 2012-194, s. 55(a), effective July 17, 2012.

(39)      Power to Accredit Schools. - Upon the request of a local board of education, the State Board of Education shall evaluate schools in local school administrative units to determine whether the education provided by those schools meets acceptable levels of quality. The State Board shall adopt rigorous academic standards for accreditation after consideration of (i) the standards of regional and national accrediting agencies, (ii) the Common Core Standards adopted by the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices and the Council of Chief State School Officers, and (iii) other information it deems appropriate.

                  The local school administrative unit shall compensate the State Board for the actual costs of the accreditation process."

SECTION 4.  G.S. 115C-16 and G.S. 115C-17 are repealed.

SECTION 5.  G.S. 115C-21 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-21.  Powers and duties generally.

(a)        Administrative Duties. - Subject to the direction, control, and approval of the State Board of Education, it shall be the duty of the Superintendent of Public Instruction:

(6)        To create a special fund within the Department of Public Instruction to manage funds received as grants from nongovernmental sources in support of public education. Effective July 1, 1995, this special fund is transferred to the State Board of Education and shall be administered by the State Board in accordance with G.S. 115C-410.

(7)        Repealed by Session Laws 1995, c. 72, s. 2.

(b)        Duties as Secretary to the State Board of Education. - Subject to the direction, control, and approval of the State Board of Education, it shall be the duty of the Superintendent of Public Instruction:

(6)        To communicate to the public school administrators all information and instructions regarding instructional policies and procedures adopted by the Board.

."

SECTION 6.  G.S. 115C-39 is repealed.

SECTION 7.  G.S. 115C-47 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-47.  Powers and duties generally.

In addition to the powers and duties designated in G.S. 115C-36, local boards of education shall have the power or duty:

(8)        To Sponsor or Conduct Educational Research. - Local boards of education are authorized to sponsor or conduct educational research and special projects approved by the Department of Public Instruction and the State Board of Education that may improve the school system under their jurisdictions. Such research or projects may be conducted during the summer months and the board may use any available funds for such purposes.

(10)      To Assure Appropriate Class Size. - It shall be the responsibility of local boards of education to assure that the class size and teaching load requirements set forth in G.S. 115C-301 are met. Any teacher who believes that the requirements of G.S. 115C-301 have not been met shall make a report to the principal and superintendent, and the superintendent shall immediately determine whether the requirements have in fact not been met. If the superintendent determines the requirements have not been met, he shall make a report to the next local board of education meeting. The local board of education shall take action to meet the requirements of the statute. If the local board cannot organizationally correct the exception and if any of the conditions set out in G.S. 115C-301(g)(1) exist, it shall immediately apply to the State Board of Education for additional personnel or a waiver of the class size requirements, as provided in G.S. 115C-301(g).

                  Upon notification from the State Board of Education that the reported exception does not qualify for an allotment adjustment or a waiver under provisions of G.S. 115C-301, the local board, within 30 days, shall take action necessary to correct the exception.

            At the end of the second month of each school year, the local board of education, through the superintendent, shall file a report with the State Board of Education, in a format prescribed by the State Board of Education, describing the organization of each school, the duties of each teacher, the size of each class, and the teaching load of each teacher. As of February 1 each year, local boards of education, through the superintendent, shall report all exceptions to individual class size and daily teaching load maximums that exist at that time.

            In addition to assuring that the requirements of G.S. 115C-301 are met, each local board of education shall also have the duty to provide an adequate number of classrooms to meet the requirements of that statute.

(12)      (For final effective date, see notes) To Implement the Basic Education Program. - Local boards of education shall implement the Basic Education Program in accordance with rules adopted by the State Board. This implementation shall include provision for the efficient teaching of the course content required by the standard course of study.

(17)      To Employ Assistant Superintendent and Supervisors. - Local boards of education have the authority to employ assistant superintendents and supervisors pursuant to the provisions of G.S. 115C-278 and 115C-284(g).

(18)      To Minimize Unnecessary Paperwork. - Make Rules Concerning the Conduct and Duties of Personnel. - Local boards of education, upon the recommendation of the superintendent, shall have full power to make all just and needful rules and regulations governing the conduct of teachers, principals, and supervisors, the kind of reports they shall make, and their duties in the care of school property.

                  Prior to the beginning of each school year, each local board of education shall identify all reports, including local school required reports, that are required at the local level for the school year and shall, to the maximum extent possible, eliminate any duplicate or obsolete reporting requirements and consolidate remaining reporting requirements. No additional reports shall be required at the local level after the beginning of the school year without the prior approval of the local board of education.

            Prior to the beginning of each school year, each local board of education shall also identify software protocols such as NC Wise that could be used to minimize repetitious data entry by teachers and shall make them available to teachers.

            Each local board of education shall appoint a person or establish a local paperwork control committee to monitor all reports and other paperwork required of teachers by the central office and to monitor teachers' access to software protocols that minimize repetitious data entry.

(18a)    To Adopt Rules and Policies Limiting the Noninstructional Duties of Teachers. - Local boards of education shall adopt rules and policies limiting the noninstructional duties assigned to teachers. A local board may temporarily suspend the rules and policies for individual schools upon a finding that there is a compelling reason the rules or policies should not be implemented. These rules and policies shall ensure that:

a.         Teachers with initial certification are not assigned extracurricular activities unless they request the assignments in writing and that other noninstructional duties assigned to these teachers are minimized, so these teachers have an opportunity to develop into skilled professionals;

b.         Teachers with 27 or more years of experience are not assigned extracurricular activities unless they request the assignments in writing and that other noninstructional duties assigned to these teachers are minimized, so these teachers have an opportunity to informally share their experience and expertise with their colleagues;

c.         The noninstructional duties of all teachers are limited to the extent possible given federal, State, and local laws, rules, and policies, and that the noninstructional duties required of teachers are distributed equitably among employees.

(19)      To Approve the Assignment of Duties to an Assistant Principal. - Local boards of education shall permit certain duties of the principal to be assigned to an assistant or acting principal pursuant to the provisions of G.S. 115C-289.

(20)      To Provide for Training of Teachers. - Local boards of education are authorized to provide for the training of teachers as provided in G.S. 115C-300.

(28a)    To Enter Guaranteed Energy Savings Contracts for Energy Conservation Measures. - Local boards may purchase energy conservation measures by guaranteed energy savings contracts pursuant to Part 2 of Article 3B of Chapter 143 of the General Statutes.

(30)      To Appoint Advisory Councils. - Local boards of education are authorized to appoint advisory councils as provided in G.S. 115C-55.

(31)      Local boards of education shall determine the hours of employment for teacher assistants. The Legislative Commission of Salary Schedules for Public School Employees shall include in its report to the General Assembly recommendations regarding hours of employment for teacher assistants and other employees.

(32)      To Refer All Students Who Drop Out of the Public Schools to Appropriate Services. - Local boards of education shall refer all students who drop out of the public schools to appropriate services. When appropriate public school services such as extended day programs are available, the local boards shall refer the students to those services. When appropriate public school programs are not available or are not suitable for certain students, the local board shall refer the students to the community college system or to other appropriate services.

(32a)    To Establish Alternative Learning Programs and Develop Policies and Guidelines. - Each local board of education shall establish at least one alternative learning program and shall adopt guidelines for assigning students to alternative learning programs. These guidelines shall include (i) a description of the programs and services to be provided, (ii) a process for ensuring that an assignment is appropriate for the student and that the student's parents are involved in the decision, and (iii) strategies for providing alternative learning programs, when feasible and appropriate, for students who are subject to long term suspension or expulsion. In developing these guidelines, local boards shall consider the State Board's standards developed under G.S. 115C-12(24).Local boards also shall adopt policies that define what constitutes an alternative school and an alternative learning program.

Local school administrative units shall use (i) the teachers allocated for students assigned to alternative learning programs pursuant to the regular teacher allotment and (ii) the teachers allocated for students assigned to alternative learning programs only to serve the needs of these students.

Local school administrative units shall report to the State Board of Education on how funds in the Alternative Schools/At-Risk Student allotment are spent.

            The General Assembly urges local boards to adopt policies that prohibit superintendents from assigning to any alternative learning program any professional public school employee who has received within the last three years a rating on a formal evaluation that is less than above standard.

            Notwithstanding this subdivision, each local board shall adopt policies based on the State Board's standards developed under G.S. 115C-12(24). These policies shall apply to any new alternative learning program or alternative school that is implemented beginning with the 2006-2007 school year. Local boards of education are encouraged to apply these standards to alternative learning programs and alternative schools implemented before the 2006-2007 school year.

            Local boards shall assess on a regular basis whether the unit's alternative schools and alternative learning programs comply with the State Board's standards developed under G.S. 115C-12(24) and whether they incorporate best practices for improving student academic performance and reducing disruptive behavior, are staffed with professional public school employees who are well trained and provided with appropriate staff development, are organized to provide coordinated services, and provide students with high quality and rigorous academic instruction.

(33)      Local boards of education shall have sole authority to select and procure supplementary instructional materials, whether or not the materials contain commercial advertising, pursuant to the provisions of G.S. 115C-98(b).

(33a)    To Approve and Use Textbooks Not Adopted by State Board of Education. - Local boards of education shall have the authority to select, procure, and use textbooks not adopted by the State Board of Education as provided in G.S. 115C-98(b1).

(34)      To Encourage the Business Community to Facilitate Student Achievement. - Local boards of education, in consultation with local business leaders, shall develop voluntary guidelines relating to after-school employment. The guidelines may include an agreement to limit the number of hours a student may work or to tie the number of hours a student may work to his academic performance, school attendance, and economic need. The General Assembly finds that local boards of education do not currently have information regarding how many of their students are employed after school and how many hours they work; the General Assembly urges local boards of education to compile this critical information so that the State can determine to what extent these students' work affects their school performance.

            Local boards of education shall work with local business leaders, including local chambers of commerce, to encourage employers to include and adopt as part of their stated personnel policies time for employees who are parents or guardians to attend conferences with their children's teachers.

            The Superintendent of Public Instruction shall provide guidance and technical assistance to the local boards of education on carrying out the provisions of this subdivision.

(34a)    To Encourage High School to Work Partnerships. - Each local board of education shall encourage high schools and local businesses to partner, specifically target students who may not seek higher education, and facilitate high school to work partnerships. Local businesses shall be encouraged to work with local high schools to create opportunities for students to complete a job shadow, internship, or apprenticeship. Students may also be encouraged to tour the local business or clinic, meet with employees, and participate in career and technical student organizations. Waiver forms may be developed in collaboration with participating businesses for the protection of both the students and the businesses.

            Each local board of education shall encourage high schools to designate the Career Development Coordinator or other designee of the local Career and Technical Education administrator to be the point person for local businesses to contact. If the person selected is a teacher, the teacher shall work with the principal and the local Career and Technical Education administrator to find time in the school day to contact businesses and develop opportunities for students. The high school shall include a variety of trades and skilled labor positions for students to interact with and shadow and shall encourage students who may be interested in a job-shadowing opportunity to pursue and set up the job shadow.

            Each local board of education shall develop a policy with provisions for students who are absent from school while doing a job shadow to make up the work. Students shall not be counted as absent when participating in these work-based learning opportunities or in Career and Technical Education student organization activities. Local boards may determine maximum numbers of days to be used for job-shadowing activities.

(35)      To produce school building improvement reports. - Each administrative unit shall produce school building improvement reports for each school building in the local school administrative unit, in accordance with G.S. 115C-12(9)c3.

(36)      To Report All Acts of School Violence. - Local boards of education shall report all acts of school violence to the State Board of Education in accordance with G.S. 115C-12(21).

(41)      To Encourage Recycling in Public Schools. - Local boards of education shall encourage recycling in public schools and may develop and implement recycling programs at public schools.

(43)      Local boards of education are encouraged to adopt policies that require superintendents to assign to the core academic courses, in seventh through ninth grades, teachers who have at least four years' teaching experience and who have received within the last three years an overall rating on a formal evaluation that is at least above standard.

(46)      At the discretion of the board, to adopt policies and procedures authorizing schools that operate programs under G.S. 115C-307(c) to utilize unlicensed health care personnel to perform the technical aspects of medication administration to students. If adopted, the policies and procedures shall be consistent with the requirements of Article 9A of Chapter 90 of the General Statutes and shall include the following:

a.         Training and competency evaluation of medication aides as provided for under G.S. 131E-270.

b.         Requirements for listing under the Medication Aide Registry as provided for under G.S. 131E-271.

c.         Requirements for supervision of medication aides by licensed health professionals or appropriately qualified supervisory personnel consistent with Articles 5, 6, 10, and 16 of Chapter 131E of the General Statutes.

(47)      To Address the Use of Pesticides in Schools. - Local boards of education shall adopt policies that address the use of pesticides in schools. These policies shall:

a.         Require the principal or the principal's designee to annually notify the students' parents, guardians, or custodians as well as school staff of the schedule of pesticide use on school property and their right to request notification. Such notification shall be made, to the extent possible, at least 72 hours in advance of nonscheduled pesticide use on school property. The notification requirements under this subdivision do not apply to the application of the following types of pesticide products: antimicrobial cleansers, disinfectants, self-contained baits and crack-and-crevice treatments, and any pesticide products classified by the United States Environmental Protection Agency as belonging to the U.S.E.P.A. Toxicity Class IV, "relatively nontoxic" (no signal word required on the product's label).

b.         Require the use of Integrated Pest Management. As used in this sub-subdivision, "Integrated Pest Management" or "IPM" means the comprehensive approach to pest management that combines biological, physical, chemical, and cultural tactics as well as effective, economic, environmentally sound, and socially acceptable methods to prevent and solve pest problems that emphasizes pest prevention and provides a decision-making process for determining if, when, and where pest suppression is needed and what control tactics and methods are appropriate.

(49)      To Address Mercury in the Classroom and on School Grounds. - Local boards of education are encouraged to remove and properly dispose of all bulk elemental mercury, chemical mercury, and bulk mercury compounds used as teaching aids in science classrooms, not including barometers. Local boards of education shall prohibit the future use of bulk elemental mercury, chemical mercury compounds, and bulk mercury compounds used as teaching aids in science classrooms, not including barometers.

(50)      To Address Exposure to Diesel Exhaust Fumes. - Local boards of education shall adopt policies and procedures to reduce students' exposure to diesel emissions.

(51)      To Ensure that Schools Provide Information Concerning Cervical Cancer, Cervical Dysplasia, Human Papillomavirus, and the Vaccines Available to Prevent These Diseases. - Local boards of education shall ensure that schools provide parents and guardians with information about cervical cancer, cervical dysplasia, human papillomavirus, and the vaccines available to prevent these diseases. This information shall be provided at the beginning of the school year to parents of children entering grades five through 12. This information shall include the causes and symptoms of these diseases, how they are transmitted, how they may be prevented by vaccination, including the benefits and possible side effects of vaccination, and places parents and guardians may obtain additional information and vaccinations for their children.

(52)      To Ensure That Certain Students Receive Information Annually on Lawfully Abandoning a Newborn Baby. - Not later than August 1, 2008, local boards of education shall adopt policies to ensure that students in grades nine through 12 receive information annually on the manner in which a parent may lawfully abandon a newborn baby with a responsible person, in accordance with G.S. 7B-500.

(53)      To Encourage Programs for Successful Transition Between the Middle School and High School Years. - Local boards of education are encouraged to adopt policies to implement programs that assist students in making a successful transition between the middle school and high school years. The programs may include Ninth Grade Academies, programs to effectively prepare eighth grade students for the expectations and rigors of high school, early warning systems to flag students not ready for ninth grade and develop plans for those students, mentoring programs that pair upperclassmen with incoming students, and graduation plans for students who have fallen behind and are off track for graduation.

(54)      To Increase Parental Involvement in Student Achievement and Graduation Preparation. - Local boards of education are encouraged to adopt policies to promote and support parental involvement in student learning and achievement at school and at home and to encourage successful progress toward graduation. These policies may include strategies to increase school communications with parents regarding expectations for students and student progress, graduation requirements, and available course offerings, to provide increased opportunities for parental involvement in schools, and to create an environment in the schools conducive for parental involvement.

(55)      To Reduce Suspension and Expulsion Rates and Provide for Academic Progress During Suspensions. - Local boards of education are encouraged to adopt policies and best practices to reduce suspension and expulsion rates and to provide alternative learning programs for continued academic progress for students who have been suspended.

(59)      To Encourage Student Voter Registration and Preregistration. - Local boards of education are encouraged to adopt policies to promote student voter registration and preregistration. These policies may include collaboration with county boards of elections to conduct voter registration and preregistration in high schools. Completion and submission of voter registration or preregistration forms shall not be a course requirement or graded assignment for students.

(61)      To Adopt Policies Directing Guidance Counselors to Advise Ninth Graders on Completing Coursework for College Entry in Three Years. - Local boards of education shall also adopt policies directing school guidance counselors to make ninth grade students aware of the potential to complete the high school courses required for college entry in a three-year period.

(62)      To Develop Recommended Programs for Use in Schools on Memorial Day. - Local boards of education shall develop recommended instructional programs that enable students to gain a better understanding of the meaning and importance of Memorial Day. All schools, especially schools that hold school on Memorial Day, shall instruct students on the significance of Memorial Day."

SECTION 8.  Article 6 of Chapter 115C of the General Statutes is repealed.

SECTION 9.  G.S. 115C-67 through G.S. 115C-68.3 are repealed.

SECTION 10.  G.S. 115C-81 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-81.  Basic Education Program.

(a3)      Alcohol and Drug Education Program to Be Recommended and Implemented:

(1)        A comprehensive education program that includes alcohol and drug use prevention education must be available to every child in North Carolina schools in kindergarten through high school.

(2)        The State Board of Education shall develop and maintain a recommended list of alcohol and drug use prevention education materials that include components for teacher training and ongoing assessment and evaluation to verify success and ensure the use of up-to-date information and strategies.

(3)        The Department of Public Instruction will work to strengthen instructional offerings in the content and skill areas of the Basic Education Program in which alcohol and drug use prevention education is addressed. Curricular materials and resources will be developed that meet, extend, and supplement drug and alcohol education as outlined in the North Carolina Standard Course of Study and the Teacher Handbook for the competency-based curriculum.

(4)        The Department of Public Instruction shall recommend to the State Board of Education any drug use prevention education support materials that should be removed or added to the recommended list of curricular resources developed and maintained by the State Board of Education.

(5)        Local boards of education may select supplemental alcohol and drug use prevention education materials from the list maintained by the State Board of Education, or develop their own supplemental materials to be approved by the State Board of Education.materials.

(6)        Local boards of education shall implement alcohol and drug use prevention education as a primary part of their comprehensive health education program.

(7)        Local boards of education will provide for ongoing evaluation of drug use prevention education resources, to include participation in on-going evaluations with the Department of Public Instruction.resources.

(8)        Local boards of education must implement an approved drug and alcohol education prevention program for kindergarten through sixth grade by the 1990-91 school year, and for seventh grade through twelfth grade by the 1991-92 school year.

(9)        Repealed by Session Laws 2005-155, s. 2, effective July 5, 2005.

(10)      The Department of Public Instruction, in conjunction with local Local school districts, will provide for staff development to train educators and support personnel to implement a comprehensive alcohol and drug use prevention education program.

(11)      Sequential, age-appropriate instruction will be provided that has the following features:

a.         Reaches all students in all grades;

b.         Presents a clear and consistent message that the use of alcohol and illicit drugs and the misuse of other drugs is unhealthy and harmful;

c.         Reflects current research and theory;

d.         Includes all abusable substances;

e.         Utilizes information that is current and accurate;

f.          Involves students in active "hands-on" learning experiences;

g.         Integrates substance abuse education with other health and social issues and other subject and skill areas of the North Carolina Basic Education Program and Standard Course of Study;

h.         Promotes understanding and respect for the law and values of society;

i.          Encourages health, safe, and responsible attitudes and behaviors;

j.          Includes strategies to involve parents, family members, and the community;

k.         Includes information on intervention and treatment services;

l.          Is continually open to revision, expansion and improvement.

(a4)      Conflict Resolution and Mediation Models: The State Board of Education shall develop a list of recommended conflict resolution and mediation materials, models, and curricula that address responsible decision making, the causes and effects of school violence and harassment, cultural diversity, and nonviolent methods for resolving conflict, including peer mediation and shall make the list available to local school administrative units and school buildings by the beginning of the 1994-95 school year. In developing this list, the Board shall emphasize materials, models, and curricula that currently are being used in North Carolina and that the Board determines to be effective. The Board shall include at least one model that includes instruction and guidance for the voluntary implementation of peer mediation programs and one model that provides instruction and guidance for teachers concerning the integration of conflict resolution and mediation lessons into the existing classroom curriculum.Carolina.

(b)        The Basic Education Program shall include course requirements and descriptions similar in format to materials previously contained in the standard course of study and it shall provide:

(1)        A core curriculum for all students that takes into account the special needs of children;

(2)        A set of competencies, by grade level, for each curriculum area;

(3)        A list of textbooks materials for use in providing the curriculum;

(4)        Standards for student performance and promotion based on the mastery of competencies, including standards for graduation, that take into account children with disabilities and, in particular, include appropriate modifications;

(5)        A program of remedial education;

(6)        Required support programs;

(7)        A definition of the instructional day;

(8)        Class size recommendations and requirements;

(9)        Prescribed staffing allotment ratios;

(10)      Material and equipment allotment ratios; and

(11)      Facilities guidelines that reflect educational program appropriateness, long-term cost efficiency, and safety considerations; andconsiderations.

(12)      Any other information the Board considers appropriate and necessary.

The State Board shall not adopt or enforce any rule that requires Algebra I as a graduation standard or as a requirement for a high school diploma for any student whose individualized education program (i) identifies the student as learning disabled in the area of mathematics and (ii) states that this learning disability will prevent the student from mastering Algebra I.

The State Board shall not require any student to prepare a high school graduation project as a condition of graduation from high school; local boards of education may, however, require their students to complete a high school graduation project.

(e1)      School Health Education Program to Be Developed and Administered.

(2)        The State Board of Education shall supervise the development and operation of a statewide comprehensive school health education program including curriculum development, in-service training provision and promotion of collegiate training, learning material review, and assessment and evaluation of local programs in the same manner as for other programs. The State Board of Education shall adopt objectives for the instruction of the subject areas listed in subdivision (1) of this subsection that are appropriate for each grade level. In addition, the State Board shall approve textbooks and other materials incorporating these objectives that local school administrative units may purchase with State funds. The State Board of Education, through the Department of Public Instruction, shall, on a regular basis, review materials related to these objectives, and distribute these reviews to local school administrative units for their information.

(5)        The State Board of Education shall make available to all local school administrative units for review by the parents and legal guardians of students enrolled at that unit any State-developed objectives for instruction, any approved textbooks, the list of reviewed materials, and any other State-developed or approved materials that pertain to or are intended to impart information or promote discussion or understanding in regard to the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV/AIDS, to the avoidance of out-of-wedlock pregnancy, or to the reproductive health and safety education curriculum. The review period shall extend for at least 60 days before use.

(g)        Civic Literacy. -

(4)        The State Board of Education shall require that any high school level curriculum-based tests developed and administered statewide beginning with the 2014-2015 academic year include questions related to the philosophical foundations of our form of government and the principles underlying the Declaration of Independence, the United States Constitution and its amendments, and the most important of the Federalist Papers.

(5)        The Department of Public Instruction and the The local boards of education, as appropriate, education shall provide or cause to be provided curriculum content for the semester course required in subdivision (1) of this subsection and teacher training to ensure that the intent and provisions of this subsection are carried out. The curriculum content established shall include a review of the contributions made by Americans of all races.

(h)        Character Education. - Each local board of education shall develop and implement character education instruction with input from the local community. The instruction shall be incorporated into the standard curriculum and should address the following traits:traits or others, in the discretion of the local school administrative unit:

(1)        Courage. - Having the determination to do the right thing even when others don't and the strength to follow your conscience rather than the crowd; and attempting difficult things that are worthwhile.

(2)        Good judgment. - Choosing worthy goals and setting proper priorities; thinking through the consequences of your actions; and basing decisions on practical wisdom and good sense.

(3)        Integrity. - Having the inner strength to be truthful, trustworthy, and honest in all things; acting justly and honorably.

(4)        Kindness. - Being considerate, courteous, helpful, and understanding of others; showing care, compassion, friendship, and generosity; and treating others as you would like to be treated.

(5)        Perseverance. - Being persistent in the pursuit of worthy objectives in spite of difficulty, opposition, or discouragement; and exhibiting patience and having the fortitude to try again when confronted with delays, mistakes, or failures.

(6)        Respect. - Showing high regard for authority, for other people, for self, for property, and for country; and understanding that all people have value as human beings.

(7)        Responsibility. - Being dependable in carrying out obligations and duties; showing reliability and consistency in words and conduct; being accountable for your own actions; and being committed to active involvement in your community.

(8)        Self-Discipline. - Demonstrating hard work and commitment to purpose; regulating yourself for improvement and restraining from inappropriate behaviors; being in proper control of your words, actions, impulses, and desires; choosing abstinence from premarital sex, drugs, alcohol, and other harmful substances and behaviors; and doing your best in all situations.

(i)         Both the standard course of study and the Basic Education Program shall include the requirement that the public schools provide instruction in personal financial literacy for all students. Each student shall receive personal financial literacy instruction that shall include (i) the true cost of credit, (ii) choosing and managing a credit card, (iii) borrowing money for an automobile or other large purchase, (iv) home mortgages, (v) credit scoring and credit reports, and (vi) other relevant financial literacy issues.

The State Board of EducationEach local school administrative unit shall determine the other components of personal financial literacy that will be covered in the curriculum. The State Board shall also review the high school standard course of study to determine into which courses and grade levels the personal financial literacy curriculum shall be integrated.

."

SECTION 11.  G.S. 115C-81.1 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-81.1.  Basic Education Program Funds not to supplant Local funds for schools.

It is the intent of the General Assembly that budget funds appropriated by the General Assembly for vocational and technical education programs and clerical personnel to implement the Basic Education Program be used to supplement and not supplant existing State and local funding for the public schools. Therefore, to the extent that local school administrative units receive additional State funds for vocational and technical education programs and clerical personnel positions that were previously funded in whole or in part with nonstate funds, the local governments shall continue to spend for public school operating or capital purposes in the local school administrative units the amount of money they would have spent to provide the vocational and technical education programs and the school clerical personnel previously funded with nonstate funds.

Priority shall be given to funding capital needs, particularly those resulting from implementation of the Basic Education Program."

SECTION 12.  G.S. 115C-83.6(a) reads as rewritten:

"(a)       Kindergarten, first, second, and third grade students shall be assessed with valid, reliable, formative, and diagnostic reading assessments made available to local school administrative units by the State Board of Education pursuant to G.S. 115C-174.11(a). assessments. Difficulty with reading development identified through administration of formative and diagnostic assessments shall be addressed with instructional supports and services. To the greatest extent possible, kindergarten through third grade reading assessments shall yield data that can be used with the Education Value-Added Assessment System (EVAAS), or a compatible and comparable system approved by the State Board of Education, to analyze student data to identify root causes for difficulty with reading development and to determine actions to address them."

SECTION 12A.  G.S. 115C-83.7(b) reads as rewritten:

"(b)      Students may be exempt from mandatory retention in third grade for good cause but shall continue to receive instructional supports and services and reading interventions appropriate for their age and reading level. Good cause exemptions shall be limited to the following:

(1)        Limited English Proficient students with less than two years of instruction in an English as a Second Language program.

(2)        Students with disabilities, as defined in G.S. 115C-106.3(1), whose individualized education program indicates the use of alternative assessments and reading interventions.

(3)        Students who demonstrate reading proficiency appropriate for third grade students on an alternative assessment approved by the State Board of Education. Teachers may administer the alternative assessment following the administration of the State-approved standardized test of reading comprehension typically given to third grade students at the end of the school year, or after a student's participation in the local school administrative unit's summer reading camp.

(4)        Students who demonstrate, through a student reading portfolio, reading proficiency appropriate for third grade students. Teachers may submit the student reading portfolio at the end of the school year or after a student's participation in the local school administrative unit's summer reading camp. The student reading portfolio and review process shall be established by the State Board of Education.

(5)        Students who have (i) received reading intervention and (ii) previously been retained more than once in kindergarten, first, second, or third grades."

SECTION 13.  G.S.115C-83.10 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-83.10.  Accountability measures.

(a)        Each local board of education shall publish annually on a Web site maintained by that local school administrative unit and report in writing to the State Board of Education by September 1 July 1 of each year the following information on the prior school year:

(1)        The number and percentage of third grade students demonstrating and not demonstrating reading proficiency on the State-approved standardized test of reading comprehension administered to third grade students.

(2)        The number and percentage of third grade students who take and pass the alternative assessment of reading comprehension.

(3)        The number and percentage of third grade students retained for not demonstrating reading proficiency.

(4)        The number and percentage of third grade students exempt from mandatory third grade retention by category of exemption as listed in G.S. 115C-83.7(b).

(b)        Each local board of education shall report annually in writing to the State Board of Education by September 1 July 1 of each year a description of all reading interventions provided to students who have been retained under G.S. 115C-83.7(a).

(c)        The State Board of Education shall establish a uniform format for local boards of education to report the required information listed in subsections (a) and (b) of this section and shall provide the format to local boards of education no later than 90 days prior to the annual due date. The State Board of Education shall compile annually this information and submit a State-level summary to the Governor, the President Pro Tempore of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee by October 1 of each year, beginning with the 2014-2015 school year.

(d)        The State Board of Education and the Department of Public Instruction shall provide technical assistance as needed to aid local school administrative units to implement all provisions of this Part."

SECTION 14.  G.S. 115C-84.2(a) reads as rewritten:

"(a)       School Calendar. - Each local board of education shall adopt a school calendar consisting of 215 days all of which shall fall within the fiscal year. A school calendar shall include the following:

(1)        (See notes) A minimum of 185 days or 1,025 hours of instruction covering at least nine calendar months. The local board shall designate when the instructional days shall occur. The number of instructional hours in an instructional day may vary according to local board policy and does not have to be uniform among the schools in the administrative unit. Local boards may approve school improvement curriculum implementation plans that include days with varying amounts of instructional time. If school is closed early due to inclement weather, the day and the scheduled amount of instructional hours may count towards the required minimum to the extent allowed by State Board policy. The school calendar shall include a plan for making up days and instructional hours missed when schools are not opened due to inclement weather.

(1a)      Repealed by Session Laws 2004-180, s. 1, effective August 9, 2004.

(2)        A minimum of 10 annual vacation leave days.

(3)        The same or an equivalent number of legal holidays occurring within the school calendar as those designated by the State Personnel Commission for State employees.

(4)        Repealed by Session Laws 2011-145, s. 7.29(a), effective July 1, 2011.

(5)        The remaining days scheduled by the local board in consultation with each school's principal for use as teacher workdays, additional instructional days, or other lawful purposes. Before consulting with the local board, each principal shall work with the school improvement team to determine the days to be scheduled and the purposes for which they should be scheduled. Days may be scheduled and planned for different purposes for different personnel and there is no requirement to schedule the same dates for all personnel. In order to make up days for school closing because of inclement weather, the local board may designate any of the days in this subdivision as additional make-up days to be scheduled after the last day of student attendance.

Local boards and individual schools are encouraged to use the calendar flexibility in order to meet the annual performance standards. set by the State Boardstandards. Local boards of education shall consult with parents and the employed public school personnel in the development of the school calendar.

Local boards shall designate at least two days scheduled under subdivision (5) of this subsection as days on which teachers may take accumulated vacation leave. Local boards may designate the remaining days scheduled in subdivision (5) of this subsection as days on which teachers may take accumulated vacation leave, but local boards shall give teachers at least 14 calendar days' notice before requiring a teacher to work instead of taking vacation leave on any of these days. A teacher may elect to waive this notice requirement for one or more of these days."

SECTION 15.  G.S. 115C-85 through G.S. 115C-91 are repealed.

SECTION 16.  G.S. 115C-92 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-92.  Procedure for adoption and change of textbook.

The local board of education, after consultation with the superintendent, shall select and adopt textbooks. Superintendent The superintendent may at any time communicate to the Board local board of education that a particular book is unsatisfactory for the schools, whereupon the Board board may call for a new selection and adoption. If the Board board votes to change a textbook, it shall give the publisher 90 days' notice prior to May 1, after which it may adopt a new book or books on the subject for which a book is sought."

SECTION 17.  G.S. 115C-93 is repealed.

SECTION 18.  G.S. 115C-94 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-94.  Publishers to register.

Any publisher who submits books for adoption by a local board of education shall register in the office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction the names of all agents or other employees authorized to represent that company in  the State, and this registration list shall be open to the public for inspection."

SECTION 19.  G.S. 115C-95 is repealed.

SECTION 20.  G.S. 115C-96 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-96.  Powers and duties of the State Board of Education local boards of education in regard to textbooks.

The children of the public elementary and secondary schools of the State shall be provided with free basic textbooks within the appropriation of the General Assembly for that purpose. To implement this directive, the State Board of Education shall evaluate annually the amount of money necessary to provide textbooks based on the actual cost and availability of textbooks and shall request sufficient appropriations from the General Assembly.

The State Board of Education Each local board of education shall administer a fund and establish rules and regulations necessary to:

(1)        Acquire by contract such basic textbooks as are or may be on the adopted list of the State of North Carolina which the Board finds necessary to meet the needs of the State public school system and to carry out the provisions of this Part.

(2)        Provide a system of distribution of these textbooks and distribute the books that are provided without using any depository or warehouse facilities other than those operated by the State Board of Education.

(3)        Provide for the free use, with proper care and return, of elementary and secondary basic textbooks. The title of said books shall be vested in the State."

SECTION 21.  G.S. 115C-98 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-98.  Local boards of education to provide for local operation of the textbook program, the selection and procurement of other instructional materials, and the use of nonadopted textbooks.materials.

(a)        Local boards of education shall adopt rules not inconsistent with the policies of the State Board of Education concerning the local operation of the textbook program.

(b)        Local boards of education shall adopt written policies concerning the procedures to be followed in their local school administrative units for the selection and procurement of textbooks, digital learning hardware and software, supplementary textbooks, library books, periodicals, audiovisual materials, and other supplementary instructional materials needed for instructional purposes in the public schools of their units.

Local boards of education shall have sole authority to select and procure supplementary instructional materials, whether or not the materials contain commercial advertising, to determine if the materials are related to and within the limits of the prescribed curriculum, and to determine when the materials may be presented to students during the school day. Supplementary materials and contracts for supplementary materials are not subject to approval by the State Board of Education.

Supplementary books and other instructional materials shall neither displace nor be used to the exclusion of basic textbooks.

(b1)      A local board of education The superintendent may establish a community media advisory committee to investigate and evaluate challenges from parents, teachers, and members of the public to textbooks and supplementary instructional materials on the grounds that they are educationally unsuitable, pervasively vulgar, or inappropriate to the age, maturity, or grade level of the students. The State Board of Education shall review its rules and policies concerning these challenges and shall establish guidelines to be followed by community media advisory committees.

The local board, at all times, has sole authority and discretion to determine whether a challenge has merit and whether challenged material should be retained or removed.

(b2)      Local boards of education may:may

(1)        Select, select, procure, and use textbooks that have not been adopted by the State Board of Education for use throughout the local school administrative unit for selected grade levels and courses; andcourses.

(2)        Approve school improvement plans developed under G.S. 115C-105.27 that include provisions for using textbooks that have not been adopted by the State Board of Education for selected grade levels and courses.

All textbook contracts made under this subsection shall include a clause granting to the local board of education the license to produce braille, large print, and audiocassette tape copies of the textbooks for use in the local school administrative unit.

(c)        Funds allocated by the State Board of Education or appropriated in the current expense or capital outlay budgets of the local school administrative units, may be used for the above-stated purposes."

SECTION 22.  G.S. 115C-102 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-102.  Right to purchase; disposal of textbooks and materials.

(a)        Any parent, guardian, or person in loco parentis may purchase any instructional material needed for any child in the public schools of the State from the board of education of the local school administrative unit in which the child is enrolled or, in the case of basic textbooks, from the State Board of Education.enrolled.

(b)        Notwithstanding Article 3A of Chapter 143 of the General Statutes, G.S. 143-49(4), or any other provision of law, the State Board of Education may adopt rules authorizing local boards of education to may dispose of discontinued instructional material, including State-adopted textbooks."

SECTION 23.  G.S. 115C-102.6A(c) reads as rewritten:

"(c)       Components of the State school technology plan shall include at least the following:

(5)        A comprehensive policy for inventory control.

."

SECTION 24.(a)  Part 5 of Article 8 of Chapter 115C of the General Statutes is repealed.

SECTION 24.(b)  The Governor shall give notice in writing to the governors of all party states to the Compact for Education that the State of North Carolina has repealed the Compact and is withdrawing from the Compact.

SECTION 25.  Article 8B of Chapter 115C of the General Statutes reads as rewritten:

"Article 8B.

"School-Based Management and Accountability Program.

"Part 1. Implementation of Program.

" 115C-105.20.  School-Based Management and Accountability Program.

(a)        The General Assembly believes that all children can learn. It is the intent of the General Assembly that the mission of the public school community is to challenge with high expectations each child to learn, to achieve, and to fulfill his or her potential.

(b)        In order to support local boards of education and schools that are not meeting either the goals of their curriculum implementation plans or their academic performance standards, in the implementation of this Program,the State Board of Education shall adopt guidelines, including guidelines to:

(1)        Assist local boards and schools in the development development, modification, and implementation of school-based management under Part 2 of this Article.their curriculum implementation plans.

(2)        Recognize the schools that meet or exceed their goals.

(3)        Identify schools that are not meeting the goals set out in their curriculum implementation plans and low-performing schools under G.S. 115C-105.37, and create assistance auditing teams that the Board may assign to schools identified as low-performing under G.S. 115C-105.37. such schools. The assistance auditing teams should consist of currently practicing teachers and staff, representatives of institutions of higher education, school administrators, and others the State Board considers appropriate.

(4)        Enable assistance auditing teams to make appropriate recommendations under G.S. 115C-105.38.

(5)        Establish a process to resolve disputes between local boards and schools in the development and implementation of school improvement curriculum implementation plans under G.S. 115C-105.27. This process shall provide for final resolution of the disputes.

" 115C-105.21.  Local participation in the Program.

(a)        Local school administrative units shall participate in the School-Based Management and Accountability Program.Program in accordance with their curriculum implementation plan.

(b)        The School-Based Management and Accountability Program shall provide increased local control of schools with the goal of improving student performance. Local boards of education:

(1)        Are allowed increased flexibility in the expenditure of State funds, in accordance with G.S. 115C-105.25; and

(2)        May be granted waivers of certain State laws, regulations, and policies that inhibit their ability to reach local accountability goals, in accordance with G.S. 115C-105.26.

(c)        The School-Based Management and Accountability Program shall be based upon an accountability, recognition, assistance, and intervention process in order to hold each school and the school's personnel accountable for improved student performance in the school.

"Part 2. School-Based Management.

" 115C-105.25.  Budget flexibility.

(a)        Consistent with improving student performance, a local board shall provide maximum flexibility to schools in the use of funds to enable the schools to accomplish their goals.

(b)        Subject to the following limitations, local boards of education may transfer and may approve transfers of funds between funding allotment categories:

(1)        In accordance with a school improvement plan accepted under G.S. 115C-105.27, curriculum implementation plan, State funds allocated for teacher assistants may be transferred only for personnel (i) to serve students only in kindergarten through third grade, or (ii) to serve students primarily in kindergarten through third grade when the personnel are assigned to an elementary school to serve the whole school. Funds allocated for teacher assistants may be transferred to reduce class size or to reduce the student-teacher ratio in kindergarten through third grade so long as the affected teacher assistant positions are not filled when the plan is amended or approved by the building-level staff entitled to vote on the plan or the affected teacher assistant positions are not expected to be filled on the date the plan is to be implemented. Any State funds appropriated for teacher assistants that were converted to certificated teachers before July 1, 1995, in accordance with Section 1 of Chapter 986 of the 1991 Session Laws, as rewritten by Chapter 103 of the 1993 Session Laws, may continue to be used for certificated teachers.

(2)        In accordance with a school improvement plan accepted under G.S. 115C-105.27, (i) State funds allocated for classroom materials/instructional supplies/equipment may be transferred only for the purchase of textbooks; (ii) State funds allocated for textbooks may be transferred only for the purchase of instructional supplies, instructional equipment, or other classroom materials; and (iii) State funds allocated for noninstructional support personnel may be transferred only for teacher positions.

(2a)      Up to three percent (3%) of State funds allocated for noninstructional support personnel may be transferred for staff development.

(3)        No funds shall be transferred into the central office allotment category.

(4)        Funds allocated for children with disabilities, for students with limited English proficiency, and for driver's education shall not be transferred.

(5)        Funds allocated for classroom teachers may be transferred only for teachers of exceptional children, for teachers of at-risk students, and for authorized purposes under the textbooks allotment category and the classroom materials/instructional supplies/equipment allotment category.

(5a)      Positions allocated for classroom teachers may be converted to dollar equivalents to contract for visiting international exchange teachers. These positions shall be converted at the statewide average salary for classroom teachers, including benefits. The converted funds shall be used only to cover the costs associated with bringing visiting international exchange teachers to the local school administrative unit through a State-approved visiting international exchange teacher program and supporting the visiting exchange teachers.

(6)        Funds allocated for vocational education may be transferred only in accordance with any rules that the State Board of Education considers appropriate to ensure compliance with federal regulations.

(7)        Funds allocated for career development shall be used in accordance with Section 17.3 of Chapter 324 of the 1995 Session Laws.

(8)        Funds allocated for academically or intellectually gifted students may be used only (i) for academically or intellectually gifted students; (ii) to implement the plan developed under G.S. 115C-150.7; or (iii) in accordance with an accepted school improvement curriculum implementation plan, for any purpose so long as that school demonstrates it is providing appropriate services to academically or intellectually gifted students assigned to that school in accordance with the local plan developed under G.S. 115C-150.7.

(9)        Funds allocated in the Alternative Schools/At-Risk Student allotment shall be spent only for alternative learning programs, at-risk students, and school safety programs.

" 115C-105.26.  Waivers of State laws, rules, or policies.

(a)        When included as part of a school improvement plan accepted under G.S. 115C-105.27, curriculum implementation plan, local boards of education shall submit requests for waivers of State laws, rules, or policies to the State Board of Education. A request for a waiver shall (i) identify the school making the request, (ii) identify the State laws, rules, or policies that inhibit the school's ability to improve student performance, (iii) set out with specificity the circumstances under which the waiver may be used, and (iv) explain how the requested waiver will permit the school to improve student performance. Except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, the State Board shall grant waivers only for the specific schools for which they are requested and shall be used only under the specific circumstances for which they are requested.

(b)        When requested as part of a school improvement curriculum implementation plan, the State Board of Education may grant waivers of:

(1)        State laws pertaining to class size and teacher certification; and

(2)        State rules and policies, except those pertaining to public school State salary schedules and employee benefits for school employees, the instructional program that must be offered under the Basic Education Program, the system of employment for public school teachers and administrators set out in G.S. 115C-287.1 and G.S. 115C-325, health and safety codes, compulsory attendance, the minimum lengths of the school day and year, and the Uniform Education Reporting System.

(c)        The State Board also may grant requests received from local boards for waivers of State laws, rules, or policies that affect the organization, duties, and assignment of central office staff only. However, none of the duties to be performed under G.S. 115C-436 may be waived.

(c1)      The State Board also may grant requests received from local boards for waivers of State laws, rules, or policies that require that each local school administrative unit provide at least one alternative school or at least one alternative learning program.

(d)        Notwithstanding subsections (b) and (c) of this section, the State Board shall not grant waivers of G.S. 115C-12(16)b. regarding the placement of State-allotted office support personnel, teacher assistants, and custodial personnel on the salary schedule adopted by the State Board.

(e)        Notwithstanding subsection (b) of this section, the State Board may grant requests received from local boards for waivers of State laws, rules, or policies pertaining to the placement of principals on the State salary schedule for public school administrators in order to provide financial incentives to encourage principals to accept employment in a school that has been identified as low-performing under G.S. 115C-105.37. The State Board shall act on requests under this subsection at the first Board meeting following receipt of each request.

(f)         Except as provided in subsection (e) of this section, the State Board shall act within 60 days of receipt of all requests for waivers under this section.

(g)        The State Board shall, on a regular basis, review all waivers it has granted to determine whether any rules should be repealed or modified or whether the Board should recommend to the General Assembly the repeal or modification of any laws.

" 115C-105.27.  Development and approval of school improvement plans.

(a)        In order to improve student performance, each school shall develop a school improvement plan that takes into consideration the annual performance goal for that school that is set by the State Board under G.S. 115C-105.35 and the goals set out in the mission statement for the public schools adopted by the State Board of Education. The principal of each school, representatives of the assistant principals, instructional personnel, instructional support personnel, and teacher assistants assigned to the school building, and parents of children enrolled in the school shall constitute a school improvement team to develop a school improvement plan to improve student performance. Representatives of the assistant principals, instructional personnel, instructional support personnel, and teacher assistants shall be elected by their respective groups by secret ballot. Unless the local board of education has adopted an election policy, parents shall be elected by parents of children enrolled in the school in an election conducted by the parent and teacher organization of the school or, if none exists, by the largest organization of parents formed for this purpose. Parents serving on school improvement teams shall reflect the racial and socioeconomic composition of the students enrolled in that school and shall not be members of the building-level staff. Parental involvement is a critical component of school success and positive student achievement; therefore, it is the intent of the General Assembly that parents, along with teachers, have a substantial role in developing school improvement plans. To this end, school improvement team meetings shall be held at a convenient time to assure substantial parent participation.

All school improvement plans shall be, to the greatest extent possible, data-driven. School improvement teams shall use the Education Value Added Assessment System (EVAAS) or a compatible and comparable system approved by the State Board of Education, to analyze student data to identify root causes for problems, to determine actions to address them, and to appropriately place students in courses such as Algebra I. School improvement plans shall contain clear, unambiguous targets, explicit indicators and actual measures, and expeditious time frames for meeting the measurement standards.

(b)        The strategies for improving student performance:

(1)        Shall include a plan for the use of staff development funds that may be made available to the school by the local board of education to implement the school improvement plan. The plan may provide that a portion of these funds is used for mentor training and for release time and substitute teachers while mentors and teachers mentored are meeting;

(1a)      Repealed by Session Laws 2012-142, s. 7A.1(c), effective July 2, 2012.

(2)        Shall include a plan to address school safety and discipline concerns;

(3)        May include a decision to use State funds in accordance with G.S. 115C-105.25;

(4)        Shall include a plan that specifies the effective instructional practices and methods to be used to improve the academic performance of students identified as at risk of academic failure or at risk of dropping out of school;

(5)        May include requests for waivers of State laws, rules, or policies for that school. A request for a waiver shall meet the requirements of G.S. 115C-105.26;

(6)        Shall include a plan to provide a duty-free lunch period for every teacher on a daily basis or as otherwise approved by the school improvement team; and

(7)        Shall include a plan to provide duty-free instructional planning time for every teacher under G.S. 115C-301.1, with the goal of providing an average of at least five hours of planning time per week.

(c)        Support among affected staff members is essential to successful implementation of a school improvement plan to address improved student performance at that school. The principal of the school shall present the proposed school improvement plan to all of the principals, assistant principals, instructional personnel, instructional support personnel, and teacher assistants assigned to the school building for their review and vote. The vote shall be by secret ballot. The principal shall submit the school improvement plan to the local board of education only if the proposed school improvement plan has the approval of a majority of the staff who voted on the plan.

(d)        The local board of education shall accept or reject the school improvement plan. The local board shall not make any substantive changes in any school improvement plan that it accepts. If the local board rejects a school improvement plan, the local board shall state with specificity its reasons for rejecting the plan; the school improvement team may then prepare another plan, present it to the principals, assistant principals, instructional personnel, instructional support personnel, and teacher assistants assigned to the school building for a vote, and submit it to the local board to accept or reject. If no school improvement plan is accepted for a school within 60 days after its initial submission to the local board, the school or the local board may ask to use the process to resolve disagreements recommended in the guidelines developed by the State Board under G.S. 115C-105.20(b)(5). If this request is made, both the school and local board shall participate in the process to resolve disagreements. If there is no request to use that process, then the local board may develop a school improvement plan for the school. The General Assembly urges the local board to utilize the school's proposed school improvement plan to the maximum extent possible when developing such a plan.

(e)        A school improvement plan shall remain in effect for no more than two years; however, the school improvement team may amend the plan as often as is necessary or appropriate. If, at any time, any part of a school improvement plan becomes unlawful or the local board finds that a school improvement plan is impeding student performance at a school, the local board may vacate the relevant portion of the plan and may direct the school to revise that portion. The procedures set out in this subsection shall apply to amendments and revisions to school improvement plans.

(f)         If a local board of education finds that a school improvement plan adequately covers another plan that the local school administrative unit is otherwise required to prepare, the local school administrative unit shall not be required to prepare an additional plan on the matter.

" 115C-105.30.  Distribution of staff development funds.

Any funds the local board of education makes available to an individual school building to implement the school improvement plan at that school shall be used in accordance with that plan.

Each local board shall distribute seventy-five percent (75%) of the funds in the staff development funding allotment to the schools to be used in accordance with that school's school improvement plan. By October 1 of each year, the principal shall disclose to all affected personnel the total allocation of all funds available to the school for staff development and the superintendent shall disclose to all affected personnel the total allocation of all funds available at the system level for staff development. At the end of the fiscal year, the principal shall make available to all affected personnel a report of all disbursements from the building-level staff development funds, and the superintendent shall make available to all affected personnel a report of all disbursements at the system level of staff development funds.

" 115C-105.32.  Parent involvement programs and conflict resolution programs as part of school improvement plans.curriculum implementation plans.

A school is encouraged to include a comprehensive parent involvement program as part of its school improvement plan under G.S. 115C-105.27. curriculum implementation plan. The State Board of Education shall develop a list of recommended strategies that it determines to be effective, which building level committees may use to establish parent involvement programs designed to meet the specific needs of their schools. The Board shall make the list available to local school administrative units and school buildings by the beginning of the 1994-95 school year.

A school is encouraged to review its need for a comprehensive conflict resolution program as part of the development of its school improvement plan under G.S. 115C-105.27. If a school determines that this program is needed, it may select from the list developed by the State Board of Education under G.S. 115C-81(a4) or may develop its own materials and curricula to be approved by the local board of education.curriculum implementation plan.

" 115C-105.33.  Safe and orderly schools.

A school improvement team or a parent organization at a school may ask the local board of education to provide assistance in promoting or restoring safety and an orderly learning environment at a school. The school improvement team or parent organization shall file a copy of this request with the State Board. If the local board fails to provide adequate assistance to the school, then the school improvement team or parent organization may ask the State Board to provide an assistance team to the school.

The State Board may provide an assistance auditing team, established under G.S. 115C-105.38, to a school in order to promote or restore safety and an orderly learning environment at that school if one of the following applies:

(1)        The the local board of education or superintendent requests that the State Board provide an assistance auditing team to a school and the State Board determines that the school needs assistance.assistance from the auditing team.

(2)        The State Board determines within 10 days after its receipt of the request for assistance from a school improvement team or parent organization of a school that the school needs assistance and that the local board has failed to provide adequate assistance to that school.

If an assistance auditing team is assigned to a school under this section, the team shall spend a sufficient amount of time at the school to assess the problems at the school, assist school personnel with resolving those problems, and work with school personnel and others to develop a long-term plan for restoring and maintaining safety and an orderly learning environment at the school. The assistance auditing team also shall make recommendations to the local board of education and the superintendent on actions the board and the superintendent should consider taking to resolve problems at the school. These recommendations shall be in writing and are public records. If an assistance auditing team is assigned to a school under this section, the powers given to the State Board and the assistance auditing team under G.S. 115C-105.38 and G.S. 115C-105.39 shall apply as if the school had been identified as low-performing under this Article.

"Part 3. School-Based Accountability.

" 115C-105.35.  Annual performance goals.

(a)        The School-Based Management and Accountability Program developed by the local school administrative unit in its curriculum implementation plan shall (i) focus on student performance in the basics of reading, mathematics, and communications skills in elementary and middle schools, (ii) focus on student performance in courses required for graduation and on other measures required by the State Board in the high schools, and (iii) hold schools accountable for the educational growth of their students. To those ends, the State Board shall design and implement an accountability system that sets annual performance standards for each school in the State in order to measure the growth in performance of the students in each individual school. During the 2004-2005 school year and at least every five years thereafter, the State Board shall evaluate the accountability system and, if necessary, modify the testing standards to assure the testing standards continue to reasonably reflect the level of performance necessary to be successful at the next grade level or for more advanced study in the content area.

As part of this evaluation, the Board shall, where available, review the historical trend data on student academic performance on State tests. To the extent that the historical trend data suggest that the current standards for student performance may not be appropriate, the State Board shall adjust the standards to assure that they continue to reflect the State's high expectations for student performance.appropriate in a local school administrative unit, the State Board of Education shall assign an auditing team to the unit.

(b)        For purposes of this Article, the State Board shall include a "closing the achievement gap" component in its measurement of educational growth in student performance for each school. The "closing the achievement gap" component shall measure and compare the performance of each subgroup in a school's population to ensure that all subgroups as identified by the State Board are meeting State standards.

(c)        The State Board shall consider incorporating into the School-Based Management and Accountability Program a character and civic education component which may include a requirement for student councils.

" 115C-105.36.  Performance recognition.

(a)        The personnel in schools that achieve a level of expected growth greater than one hundred percent (100%) at a level to be determined by the State Board of Education are eligible for financial awards in amounts set by the State Board. Schools and personnel shall not be required to apply for these awards. For the purpose of this section, "personnel" includes the principal, assistant principal, instructional personnel, instructional support personnel, and teacher assistants (i) serving students in one or more of the grades kindergarten through 12 or (ii) assigned to a public school prekindergarten program that is located within a public elementary school and is designed to prepare students for kindergarten at that school.

(b)        The State Board shall establish a procedure to allocate the funds for these awards to the local school administrative units in which the eligible schools are located. Funds shall become available for expenditure July 1 of each fiscal year. Funds shall remain available until November 30 of the subsequent fiscal year for expenditure for awards to the personnel. Each local school administrative unit is encouraged to make these awards to each eligible person no later than the first regular teacher payroll following the local unit's receipt of the funds, and shall make these awards to each eligible person no later than the second regular teacher payroll following the local unit's receipt of the funds.

" 115C-105.37.  Identification of low-performing schools.

(a)        The State Board of Education shall design and implement a procedure to identify low-performing schools on an annual basis. Low-performing schools are those in which there is a failure to meet the minimum growth standards,standards based on the tests administered pursuant to G.S. 115C-174.11, as defined by the State Board, and a majority of students are performing below grade level.

(a1)      By July 10 of each year, each local school administrative unit shall do a preliminary analysis of test results to determine which of its schools the State Board may identify as low-performing under this section. The superintendent then shall proceed under G.S. 115C-105.39. In addition, within 30 days of the initial identification of a school as low-performing by the local school administrative unit or the State Board, whichever occurs first, the superintendent shall submit to the local board a preliminary plan for appropriately implementing the curriculum implementation plan or modifying it to addressing address the needs of that school, including how the superintendent and other central office administrators will work with the school and monitor the school's progress. Within 30 days of its receipt of this plan, the local board shall vote to approve, modify, or reject this plan. Before the board makes this vote, it shall make the plan available to the public, including the personnel assigned to that school and the parents and guardians of the students who are assigned to the school, and shall allow for written comments. The board shall submit the plan to the State Board within five days of the board's vote. The State Board shall review the plan expeditiously and, if appropriate, may offer recommendations to modify the plan. The local board shall consider any recommendations made by the State Board.

(b)        Each school that the State Board identifies as low-performing shall provide written notification to the parents of students attending that school. The written notification shall include a statement that the State Board of Education has found that the school has "failed to meet the minimum growth standards, as defined by the State Board, and a majority of students in the school are performing below grade level." This notification also shall include information about the plan developed under subsection (a1) of this section and a description of any additional steps the school is taking to improve student performance.

" 115C-105.37A.  Continually low-performing schools; definition; assistance and intervention; reassignment of students.

(a)        Definition of Continually Low-Performing Schools. - A continually low-performing school is a school that has received State-mandated assistance and has been designated by the State Board as low performing for at least two of three consecutive years. If the State Board identifies a school as continually low performing:performing,

(1)        The school improvement team at that school shall review its school improvement plan to ensure consistency with the plan adopted pursuant to G.S. 115C-105.38(b)(3), and

(2)        The the curriculum implementation plan for the local school administrative unit must be reviewed and approved reapproved by the State Board of Education.

(b)        Assistance to Schools That Are Low Performing for Two Years. - If a school that has received State-mandated assistance is designated by the State Board as low performing for two consecutive years or for two of three consecutive years, the State Board shall provide a series of progressive assistance and intervention strategies to that school. These strategies shall be designed to improve student achievement and to maintain student achievement at appropriate levels and may include, to the extent that funds are available for this purpose, assistance such as reductions in class size, extension of teacher and assistant principal contracts, extension of the instructional year, and grant-based assistance.

(c)        Intervention in Schools That Are Low Performing for Three or More Years. - The State Board of Education shall develop and implement a series of actions for providing assistance and intervention to schools that have previously received State-mandated assistance and have been designated by the State Board as low performing for three or more consecutive years or for at least three out of four years. These actions shall be the least intrusive actions that are consistent with the need to improve student achievement at each such school and shall be adapted to the unique characteristics of each such school and the effectiveness of other actions developed or implemented to improve student achievement at each such school.

" 115C-105.37B.  Reform of continually low-performing schools.

(a)        Notwithstanding any other provision of this Article, the State Board of Education is authorized to approve a local board of education's request to reform any school in its administrative unit which the State Board of Education has identified as one of the continually low-performing schools in North Carolina.

If the State Board of Education approves a local board of education's request to reform a school, the State Board of Education may authorize the local board of education to adopt one of the following models models, which shall be included in the annual update to its curriculum implementation plan, in accordance with State Board of Education requirements:

(1)        Transformation model, which would address the following four specific areas critical to transforming a continually low-performing school:

a.         Developing and increasing teacher and school leader effectiveness.

b.         Comprehensive instructional reform strategies.

c.         Increasing learning time and creating community-oriented schools.

d.         Providing operational flexibility and sustained support.

(2)        Restart model, in which the State Board of Education would authorize the local board of education to operate the school with the same exemptions from statutes and rules as a charter school authorized under Part 6A of Article 16 of this Chapter, or under the management of an educational management organization that has been selected through a rigorous review process. A school operated under this subdivision remains under the control of the local board of education, and employees assigned to the school are employees of the local school administrative unit with the protections provided by G.S. 115C-325.

(3)        Turnaround model, which would involve, among other actions, replacing the principal, if the principal has been in that position for at least three years, and rehiring no more than fifty percent (50%) of the school's staff, adopting a new governance structure at the school consistent with this Article, and implementing an instructional program aligned with the Standard Course of Study.

(4)        School closure model, in which a local school administrative unit would close the school consistent with G.S. 115C-72 and enroll the students who attended the school in other, higher-achieving schools in the local school administrative unit consistent with Article 25 of this Chapter.

(b)        The State Board of Education shall adopt rules to develop requirements for the models for school reform established in subsection (a) of this section.

(c)        The State Board shall establish a procedure to implement this section. This procedure shall include annual reporting requirements from local boards that are authorized to use one of the models under this section and shall include a procedure for removing or continuing the authorization.

(d)        Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit the authority of a local board of education as otherwise provided in this Chapter.

" 115C-105.38.  Assistance Auditing teams; review by State Board.

(a)        The State Board of Education may assign an assistance auditing team to any school identified as low-performing under this Article orArticle, to any other school that requests an assistance team and that the State Board determines would benefit from an assistance team. team, or to any other school or local school administrative unit that the State Board deems necessary. The State Board shall give priority to low-performing schools in which the educational performance of the students is declining. The Department of Public Instruction shall, with the approval of the State Board, provide staff as needed and requested by an assistance team.

(b)        When assigned to an identified low-performing school, an assistance team shall:

(1)        Review and investigate all facets of school operations and assist in developing recommendations for improving student performance at that school.

(2)        Evaluate at least semiannually the personnel assigned to the school and make findings and recommendations concerning their performance.

(3)        Collaborate with school staff, central offices, and local boards of education in the design, implementation, and monitoring of a plan that, if fully implemented, can reasonably be expected to alleviate problems and improve student performance at that school.

(4)        Make recommendations as the school develops and implements this plan.

(5)        Review the school's progress.

(6)        Report, as appropriate, to the local board of education, the community, and the State Board on the school's progress. If an assistance team determines that an accepted school improvement plan developed under G.S. 115C-105.27 the curriculum implementation plan is impeding student performance at a school, the team may recommend to the local board that it vacate the relevant portions of that plan and direct the school local school administrative unit to revise those portions.

(b1)      Report to the State Board of Education if a school and its local board of education are not responsive to the team's recommendations. A copy of that report shall be made available to the local board, and the local board shall have an opportunity to respond. Notwithstanding G.S. 115C-36 and other provisions of this Chapter, if the State Board confirms that the school and local board have failed to take appropriate steps to improve student performance at that school, school or to remedy what the State Board deems to be serious deficiencies in the curriculum implementation plan or its implementation, the State Board shall assume all powers and duties previously conferred upon that local board and that school and shall have general control and supervision of all matters pertaining to that school until student performance at the school meets or exceeds the standards set for the school. The State Board may, as it considers appropriate, delegate any powers and duties to that local board or school before the school meets or exceeds those standards.

(c)        If a school fails to improve student performance or to remedy the deficiencies in the curriculum implementation plan or is implementation after assistance is provided under this section, the assistance auditing team may recommend that the assistance continues or that the State Board take further action under G.S. 115C-105.39.

(d)        The State Board shall annually review the progress made in identified low-performing schools.

" 115C-105.38A.  Teacher competency assurance.

(a)        General Knowledge Test. -

(1)        Each assistance team assigned to a low-performing school during the 1997-98 school year shall review the team's evaluations of certified staff members to determine which staff members have been designated by the team as Category 3 teachers. The assistance team shall then determine whether lack of general knowledge contributed to the Category 3 designation. If the assistance team determines that a certified staff member's lack of general knowledge contributed to that staff member being designated as a Category 3 teacher, the assistance team shall submit the staff member's name to the State Board. Upon receipt of the notification, the State Board shall require that the certified staff members identified by the assistance teams demonstrate their general knowledge by acquiring a passing score on a test designated by the State Board. The State Board shall administer the general knowledge test required under this subdivision at the end of the 1997-98 school year.

(2)        During the 1998-99 school year and thereafter, either the principal assigned to a low-performing school or the assistance team assigned to a low-performing school may recommend to the State Board that a certified staff member take a general knowledge test. A principal or an assistance team may make this recommendation if the principal or the assistance team determines that the certified staff member's performance is impaired by the staff member's lack of general knowledge. After receipt of the notification, but prior to the end of the fiscal year, the State Board shall require that all certified staff members identified under this subdivision demonstrate their general knowledge by acquiring a passing score on a test designated by the State Board.

(b)        Repealed by Session Laws 1998-5, s. 1.

(c)        Remediation. - Certified staff members who do not acquire a passing score on the test required under subsection (a) of this section shall engage in a remediation plan based upon the deficiencies identified by the test, or an assistance team, or a principal. The remediation plan for deficiencies of individual certified staff members shall consist of up to a semester of university or community college training or coursework or other similar activity to correct the deficiency. The remediation shall be developed by the State Board of Education in consultation with the Board of Governors of The University of North Carolina. The State Board shall reimburse the institution providing the remediation any tuition and fees incurred under this section. If the remediation plan requires that the staff member engage in a full-time course of study or training, the staff member shall be considered on leave with pay.

(d)        Retesting; Dismissal. - Upon completion of the remediation plan required under subsection (c) of this section, the certified staff member shall take the general knowledge test a second time. If the certified staff member fails to acquire a passing score on the second test, the State Board shall begin a dismissal proceeding under G.S. 115C-325(q)(2a).

(e)        Repealed by Session Laws 1998-5, s.1.

(f)         Other Actions Not Precluded. - Nothing in this section shall be construed to restrict or postpone the following actions:

(1)        The dismissal of a principal under G.S. 115C-325(q)(1);

(2)        The dismissal of a teacher, assistant principal, director, or supervisor under G.S. 115C-325(q)(2);

(3)        The dismissal or demotion of a career employee for any of the grounds listed under G.S. 115C-325(e);

(4)        The nonrenewal of a school administrator's or probationary teacher's contract of employment; or

(5)        The decision to grant career status.

(g)        Repealed by Session Laws 1998-5, s. 1.

" 115C-105.39.  Dismissal or removal of personnel; appointment of interim superintendent.

(a)        Within 30 days of the initial identification of a school as low-performing, whether by the local school administrative unit under G.S. 115C-105.37(a1) or by the State Board under G.S. 115C-105.37(a), the superintendent shall take one of the following actions concerning the school's principal: (i) recommend to the local board that the principal be retained in the same position, (ii) recommend to the local board that the principal be retained in the same position and a plan of remediation should be developed, (iii) recommend to the local board that the principal be transferred, or (iv) proceed under G.S. 115C-325 to dismiss or demote the principal. The principal may be retained in the same position without a plan for remediation only if the principal was in that position for no more than two years before the school is identified as low-performing. The principal shall not be transferred to another principal position unless (i) it is in a school classification in which the principal previously demonstrated at least 2 years of success, (ii) there is a plan to evaluate and provide remediation to the principal for at least one year following the transfer to assure the principal does not impede student performance at the school to which the principal is being transferred; and (iii) the parents of the students at the school to which the principal is being transferred are notified. The principal shall not be transferred to another low-performing school in the local school administrative unit. If the superintendent intends to recommend demotion or dismissal, the superintendent shall notify the local board. Within 15 days of (i) receiving notification that the superintendent intends to proceed under G.S. 115C-325, or (ii) its decision concerning the superintendent's recommendation, but no later than September 30, the local board shall submit to the State Board a written notice of the action taken and the basis for that action. If the State Board does not assign an assistance team to that school or if the State Board assigns an assistance team to that school and the superintendent proceeds under G.S. 115C-325 to dismiss or demote the principal, then the State Board shall take no further action. If the State Board assigns an assistance team to the school and the superintendent is not proceeding under G.S. 115C-325 to dismiss or demote the principal, then the State Board shall vote to accept, reject, or modify the local board's recommendations. The State Board shall notify the local board of its action within five days. If the State Board rejects or modifies the local board's recommendations and does not recommend dismissal of the principal, the State Board's notification shall include recommended action concerning the principal's assignment or terms of employment. Upon receipt of the State Board's notification, the local board shall implement the State Board's recommended action concerning the principal's assignment or terms of employment unless the local board asks the State Board to reconsider that recommendation. The State Board shall provide an opportunity for the local board to be heard before the State Board acts on the local board's request for a reconsideration. The State Board shall vote to affirm or modify its original recommended action and shall notify the local board of its action within five days. Upon receipt of the State Board's notification, the local board shall implement the State Board's final recommended action concerning the principal's assignment or terms of employment. If the State Board rejects or modifies the local board's action and recommends dismissal of the principal, the State Board shall proceed under G.S. 115C-325(q)(1).

(b)        The State Board shall proceed under G.S. 115C-325(q)(2) for the dismissal of teachers, assistant principals, directors, and supervisors assigned to a school identified as low-performing in accordance with G.S. 115C-325(q)(2).

(c)        The State Board may appoint an interim superintendent in a local school administrative unit:

(1)        Upon the identification of more than half the schools in that unit as low-performing under G.S. 115C-105.37; or

(2)        Upon the recommendation from an assistance team assigned to a school located in that unit that has been identified as low-performing under G.S. 115C-105.37. This recommendation shall be based upon a finding that the superintendent has failed to cooperate with the assistance team or has otherwise hindered that school's ability to improve.

The State Board may assign any of the powers and duties of the local superintendent and the local finance officer to the interim superintendent that the Board considers are necessary or appropriate to improve student performance in the local school administrative unit. The interim superintendent shall perform all of these assigned powers and duties. The State Board of Education may terminate the contract of any local superintendent entered into on or after July 1, 1996, when it appoints an interim superintendent. The Administrative Procedure Act shall apply to that decision. Neither party to that contract is entitled to damages.

(d)        In the event the State Board has appointed an interim superintendent and the State Board determines that the local board of education has failed to cooperate with the interim superintendent or has otherwise hindered the ability to improve student performance in that local school administrative unit or in a school in that unit, the State Board may suspend any of the powers and duties of the local board of education that the State Board considers are necessary or appropriate to improve student performance in the local school administrative unit. The State Board shall perform all of these assigned powers and duties for a period of time to be specified by the State Board.

(e)        If the State Board suspends any of the powers and duties of the local board of education under subsection (d) of this section and subsequently determines it is necessary to change the governance of the local school administrative unit in order to improve student performance, the State Board may recommend this change to the General Assembly, which shall consider, at its next session, the future governance of the identified local school administrative unit.

(f)         The State Board may also proceed under this section to dismiss or remove personnel if it finds that there are serious deficiencies in a curriculum implementation plan or its implementation.

" 115C-105.40.  Student academic performance standards.

The State Board of Education shall develop a plan to create rigorous student academic performance standards for kindergarten through eighth grade and student academic performance standards for courses in grades 9-12. The performance standards shall align, whenever possible, with the student academic performance standards developed for the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). The plan also shall include clear and understandable methods of reporting individual student academic performance to parents.

" 115C-105.41.  Students who have been placed at risk of academic failure; personal education plans; transition teams and transition plans.

(a)        In order to implement Part 1A of Article 8 of this Chapter, local school administrative units shall identify students who are at risk for academic failure and who are not successfully progressing toward grade promotion and graduation, beginning in kindergarten. Identification shall occur as early as can reasonably be done and can be based on grades, observations, diagnostic and formative assessments, State assessments, and other factors, including reading on grade level, that impact student performance that teachers and administrators consider appropriate, without having to await the results of end-of-grade or end-of-course tests. No later than the end of the first quarter, or after a teacher has had up to nine weeks of instructional time with a student, a personal education plan for academic improvement with focused intervention and performance benchmarks shall be developed or updated for any student at risk of academic failure who is not performing at least at grade level, as identified by the State end-of-grade test and other factors noted above. Focused instructional supports and services, reading interventions, and accelerated activities should include evidence-based practices that meet the needs of students and may include coaching, mentoring, tutoring, summer school, Saturday school, and extended days. Local school administrative units shall provide these activities free of charge to students. Local school administrative units shall also provide transportation free of charge to all students for whom transportation is necessary for participation in these activities.

Local school administrative units shall give notice of the personal education plan and a copy of the personal education plan to the student's parent or guardian. Parents should be included in the implementation and ongoing review of personal education plans. If a student's school report card provides all the information required in a personal education plan, then no further personal education plan is mandated for the student.

Local school administrative units shall certify that they have complied with this section annually to the State Board of Education. The State Board of Education shall periodically review data on the progress of identified students and report to the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee.

No cause of action for monetary damages shall arise from the failure to provide or implement a personal education plan under this section.

(b)        Local boards of education shall adopt and implement plans for the creation of transition teams and transition plans for students at risk, as defined by the State Board of Education, to assist them in making a successful transition between the elementary school and middle school years and between the middle school and high school years."

SECTION 26.  G.S. 115C-105.46 is repealed.

SECTION 27.  G.S. 115C-105.47A reads as rewritten:

" 115C-105.47A.  Proposals Plans to establish alternative learning programs or alternative schools.

(a)        Before establishing any alternative learning program or alternative school, the local board of education school administrative unit shall develop a proposala plan to implement the program or school that includes all of the following:

(1)        The educational and behavioral goals for students assigned to the program or school.

(2)        The policies and procedures for the operation of the program or school based on the State Board's standards adopted under G.S. 115C-12(24). school. The policies and procedures shall address the assignment of students to the program or school.

(3)        Identified strategies that will be used to improve student achievement and behavior.

(4)        Documentation that similar programs and schools in or out of the State, or both, have demonstrated success in improving the academic achievement and behavior of students assigned to them.

(5)        The estimated actual cost of operating the program or school. To the extent practicable, this shall include the cost of:

a.         Staffing the program or school with teachers who have at least four years' teaching experience and who have received an overall rating of at least above standard on a formal evaluation and are certified in the areas and grade levels being taught;

b.         Providing optimum learning environments, resources and materials, and high quality, ongoing professional development that will ensure students who are placed in the program or school are provided enhanced educational opportunities in order to achieve their full potential;

c.         Providing support personnel, including school counselors, psychiatrists, clinical psychologists, social workers, nurses, and other professionals to help students and their families work out complex issues and problems;

d.         Maintaining safe and orderly learning environments; and

e.         Providing transitional supports for students exiting the program or school and reentering the referring school.

(6)        Documented support of school personnel and the community for the implementation of the program or school.

(b)        After the local board completes the proposal under subsection (a) of this section, the board shall submit the proposal to the State Board of Education for its review. The State Board shall review the proposal expeditiously and, if appropriate, may offer recommendations to modify the proposal. The local board shall consider any recommendations made by the State Board before implementing the alternative learning program or alternative school.The local school administrative unit shall include the plan in the curriculum component of its curriculum implementation plan."

SECTION 28.  G.S. 115C-105.48(a) reads as rewritten:

"(a)       Prior to referring a student to an alternative school or an alternative learning program, the referring school shall:

(1)        Document the procedures that were used to identify the student as being at risk of academic failure or as being disruptive or disorderly.

(2)        Provide the reasons for referring the student to an alternative school or an alternative learning program.

(3)        Provide to the alternative school or alternative learning program all relevant student records, including anecdotal information.

(4)        Review the reasons for referring the student to an alternative school or an alternative learning program and all relevant student records, including anecdotal information, with the parents of the student."

SECTION 29.  G.S. 115C-152 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-152.  Definitions.

The State Board of Education shall provide appropriate definitions to vocational and technical education programs, services, and activities in grades 6-12 not otherwise included in this Part. Local boards of education may provide appropriate definitions to other vocational and technical education programs, services, and activities in grades 6-12 not otherwise included in this Part and may implement them to the extent they are consistent with federal law and the terms of federal grants. As used in this Part, unless the context requires otherwise:

(1)        "Career development; introductory" means an instructional program, service, or activity designed to familiarize individuals with the broad range of occupations for which special skills are required and the requisites for careers in such occupations.

(2)        "Comprehensive vocational and technical education" means instructional programs, services, or activities directly related to preparation for and placement in employment, for advanced technical preparation, or for the making of informed and meaningful educational and occupational choices.

(3)        "Occupational skill development" means a program, service, or activity designed to prepare individuals for paid or unpaid employment as semiskilled or skilled workers, technicians, or professional-support personnel in recognized occupations and in new and emerging occupations including occupations or a trade, technical, business, health, office, homemaking, homemaking-related, agricultural, marketing, and other nature. Instruction is designed to fit individuals for initial employment in a specific occupation or a cluster of closely related occupations in an occupational field. This instruction includes education in technology, manipulative skills, theory, auxiliary information, application of academic skills, and other associated knowledges.

(4)        "Preparation for advanced education" means a program, service, or activity designed to prepare individuals for participation in advanced or highly skilled post-secondary and technical education programs leading to employment in specific occupations or a cluster of closely related occupations and for participation in vocational and technical education teacher education programs."

SECTION 30.  G.S. 115C-174.11 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-174.11.  Components of the testing program.

(a)        Assessment Instruments for Kindergarten, First, Second, and Third Grades. - The State Board of Education shall develop, adopt, and provide to the local school administrative units developmentally appropriate individualized assessment instruments consistent with the Basic Education Program and Part 1A of Article 8 of this Chapter for the kindergarten, first, second, and third grades. Local school administrative units shall use these assessment instruments provided to them by the State Board for kindergarten, first, second, and third grade students to assess progress, diagnose difficulties, and inform instruction and remediation needs. Local school administrative units shall not use standardized tests for summative assessment of kindergarten, first, and second grade students except as required as a condition of receiving federal grants.

(b)        Repealed by Session Laws 2009-451, s. 7.20(c), effective July 1, 2009.

(c)        Annual Testing Program. -

(1)        The State Board of Education shall adopt tests for grades three through 12 that are required by federal law or as a condition of a federal grant. These tests shall be shall require local boards of education to administer the following tests:

a.         Nationally accepted tests for all students in grades three and five that are designed to measure progress toward reading, communication skills, and mathematics for grades three through eight, and toward competencies for grades nine through 12. mathematics.

b.         The Pre-ACT test in grades eight through 11. Students who do not pass the tests adopted for Pre-ACT in eighth grade shall be provided remedial instruction in the ninth grade.

c.         The ACT test in grades nine through 12.

d.         Other tests required by federal law.

(2)        If the State Board of Education finds that additional testing in grades three through 12 is desirable to allow comparisons with national indicators of student achievement, that testing shall be conducted with the smallest size sample of students necessary to assure valid comparisons with other states.

(3)        The State Board of Education shall continue to participate in the development of the Common Core State Standards in conjunction with the consortium of other states, review all national assessments developed by both multistate consortia, and implement the assessments that the State Board deems most appropriate to assess student achievement on the Common Core State Standards.

(4)        To the extent funds are made available, the State Board shall plan for and require the administration of the ACT test for all students in the eleventh grade unless the student has already taken a comparable test and scored at or above a level set by the State Board.

(d)        Except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, the State Board of Education shall not require the public schools to administer any standardized tests except for those required by federal law or as a condition of a federal grant.law.

The State Board of Education shall adopt and provide to local school administrative units all tests required by federal law or as a condition of a federal grant.law."

SECTION 31.  G.S. 115C-174.12 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-174.12.  Responsibilities of agencies.

(a)        The State Board of Education shall establish policies and guidelines necessary for minimizing the time students spend taking tests administered through State and local testing programs, for minimizing the frequency of field testing at any one school, and for otherwise carrying out the provisions of this Article. These policies and guidelines shall include the following:

(1)        Schools shall devote no more than two days of instructional time per year to the taking of practice tests that do not have the primary purpose of assessing current student learning;

(2)        Students in a school shall not be subject to field tests or national tests during the two-week period preceding the administration of end-of-grade tests, end-of-course tests, or the school's regularly scheduled final exams; and

(3)        No school shall participate in more than two field tests at any one grade level during a school year unless that school volunteers, through a vote of its school improvement team, to participate in an expanded number of field tests.

These policies shall reflect standard testing practices to insure reliability and validity of the sample testing. The results of the field tests shall be used in the final design of each test. The State Board of Education's policies regarding the testing of children with disabilities shall (i) provide broad accommodations and alternate methods of assessment that are consistent with a child's individualized education program and section 504 (29 U.S.C. 794) plans, (ii) prohibit the use of statewide tests as the sole determinant of decisions about a child's graduation or promotion, and (iii) provide parents with information about the Statewide Testing Program and options for students with disabilities. The State Board shall report its proposed policies and proposed changes in policies to the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee prior to adoption.

The State Board of Education may appoint an Advisory Council on Testing to assist in carrying out its responsibilities under this Article.

(b)        The Superintendent of Public Instruction shall be responsible, under policies adopted by the State Board of Education, responsible for the statewide administration of the testing program provided by this Article.

(b1)      The Superintendent shall notify local boards of education by October 1 of each year of any field tests that will be administered in their schools during the school year, the schools at which the field tests will be administered, and the specific field tests that will be administered at each school.

."

SECTION 32.  G.S. 115C-174.18 is repealed.

SECTION 33.  G.S. 115C-203 through G.S. 115C-209 are repealed.

SECTION 34.  Article 13A of Chapter 115C of the General Statutes is repealed.

SECTION 35.  G.S. 115C-231 is repealed.

SECTION 36.  G.S. 115C-233 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-233.  Operation of summer schools.

Each local school administrative unit may establish and maintain summer schools. Such summer schools as may be established shall be administered by local boards of education and shall be conducted in accordance with standards developed by the State Board of Education. education. The standards so developed shall specify the requirements for approved curriculum, the qualifications of the personnel, the length of the session, and the conditions under which students may be granted credit for courses pursued during a summer school. In determining the eligibility of students for admission to summer schools, boards of education shall be governed by Article 9 of this Chapter, and G.S. 115C-366(b) and 115C-367 to 115C-370. Boards of education of local school administrative units may provide for summer schools from State funds made available for that purpose by the State Board of Education, purpose, funds appropriated to the local school administrative unit by the tax-levying authority, and from any other revenues available for the purpose."

SECTION 37.  G.S. 115C-238.31(a) reads as rewritten:

"(a)       Local school administrative units are encouraged to implement extended services programs that will expand students' opportunities for educational success through high-quality, integrated access to instructional programming during nonschool hours. Extended services programs may be incorporated into the curriculum component of school improvement plans developed in accordance with G.S. 115C-105.27. curriculum implementation plans developed in accordance with G.S. 115C-26.2. Calendar alternatives include, but are not limited to, after-school hours, before-school hours, evening school, Saturday school, summer school, and year-round school. Instructional programming may include, but is not limited to, tutoring, direct instruction, enrichment activities, study skills, and reinforcement projects."

SECTION 38.  G.S. 115C-238.33 is repealed.

SECTION 39.  G.S. 115C-238.50 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-238.50.  Purpose.

(a)        The purpose of this Part is to authorize local boards of education to jointly establish with one or more boards of trustees cooperative innovative programs in high schools and colleges or universities that will expand students' opportunities for educational success through high quality instructional programming. These cooperative innovative high school programs shall target any of the following groups:

(1)        High school students who are at risk of dropping out of school before attaining a high school diploma.

(1a)      High school students with parents who did not continue education beyond high school.

(2)        High school students who would benefit from accelerated academic instruction.

(b)        All the cooperative innovative high school programs established under this Part shall:shall be included in the local school administrative units' curriculum implementation plans. The plans shall:

(1)        Enable students to concurrently obtain a high school diploma and begin or complete an associate degree program, master a certificate or vocational program, or earn up to two years of college credit within five years.credit.

(f)         Students are eligible to attend these programs as early as ninth grade."

SECTION 40.  G.S. 115C-238.50A reads as rewritten:

" 115C-238.50A.  Definitions.

The following definitions apply in this Part:

(1a)      Cooperative innovative high school. - A high school approved by the State Board of Education local board of education and the applicable governing Board that meets the following criteria:

a.         It has no more than 100 students per grade level.

b.         It partners with an institution of higher education to enable students to concurrently obtain a high school diploma and begin or complete an associate degree program, master a certificate or vocational program, or earn up to two years of college credit within five years.credit.

c.         It is located on the campus of the partner institution of higher education, unless the governing Board or the local board of trustees for a private North Carolina college specifically waives the requirement through adoption of a formal resolution.

(1b)      Cooperative innovative high school allotment. - Funds appropriated by the General Assembly to the Department of Public Instruction to provide additional resources to approved cooperative innovative high schools.

."

SECTION 41.  G.S. 115C-238.51 and G.S. 115C-238.51A are repealed.

SECTION 42.  G.S. 115C-238.52(b) is repealed.

SECTION 43.  G.S. 115C-238.53 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-238.53.  Operation of cooperative innovative high schools.

(a)        A cooperative innovative high school approved by the State is accountable to the local board of education.

(b)        A cooperative innovative high school approved under this Part shall operate under the terms of a written agreement signed by the local board of education, local board of trustees, State Board of Education, and applicable governing Board. The agreement shall incorporate the information provided in the application, as modified during the approval process, and any terms and conditions imposed on the school by the State Board of Education and the applicable governing Board. The agreement may be for a term of no longer than five school years.

(f)         Except as provided in this Part and under the terms of the agreement, cooperative innovative high schools:schools

(1)        Shall shall have the same exemptions from statutes and rules as charter schools operating under Part 6A of this Article, other than those pertaining to personnel.

(2)        May be exempted by the State Board of Education or by the applicable governing Board from laws and rules applicable to a local board of education, a local school administrative unit, a community college, a constituent institution, or a local board of trustees."

SECTION 44.  G.S. 115C-238.54 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-238.54.  Funds for cooperative innovative high schools.

(e)        The local board of education and the local board of trustees are strongly encouraged to seek funds from sources other than State, federal, and local appropriations. They are strongly encouraged to seek funds the Education Cabinet identifies or obtains under G.S. 116C-4.

(g)        Students in cooperative innovative high schools that have a community college as their partner institution of higher education and were approved under G.S. 115C-238.51A(c) by a local board of education shall be included in calculations of budget full-time equivalent students for the North Carolina Community College System. Students in cooperative innovative high schools that have a community college as their partner institution of higher education and were approved under G.S. 115C-238.51A(b) shall not be included in calculations of budget full-time equivalent students for the North Carolina Community College System.System only to the extent that the General Assembly appropriates funds for this purpose.

(i)         The State Board of Education shall reimburse private North Carolina colleges for tuition for courses taken by students at cooperative innovative high schools that have a private North Carolina college as their partner institution of higher education and were approved under G.S. 115C-238.51A(c). Tuition payments (i) shall not exceed the highest undergraduate resident rate approved by the Board of Governors for The University of North Carolina constituent institutions and shall not include fees. The State Board of Education shall not reimburse private North Carolina colleges for tuition for courses taken by students at cooperative innovative high schools that have a private North Carolina college as their partner institution of higher education and were approved under G.S. 115C-238.51A(b).average per pupil amount appropriated by the General Assembly under The University of North Carolina Need-Based Financial Aid Program and (ii) shall be made only to the extent that the General Assembly appropriates funds for this purpose."

SECTION 45.  G.S. 115C-238.55 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-238.55.  Evaluation of cooperative innovative high schools.

The State Board of Education and the governing Boards shall evaluate the success of students in cooperative innovative high schools approved under this Part. Success shall be measured by tests administered in accordance with G.S. 115C-174.11. high school retention rates, high school completion rates, high school dropout rates, certification and associate degree completion, admission to four-year institutions, postgraduation employment in career or study-related fields, and employer satisfaction of employees who participated in and graduated from the schools. The Boards shall jointly report by January 15 of each year to the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee all entities providing funds to the schools on the evaluation of these schools."

SECTION 46.  G.S. 115C-238.61 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-238.61.  Definitions.

The following definitions apply in this Part:

(1)        First generation student. - A student who has no parent who has completed a two- or four-year degree.

(2)        Participating units. - A local school administrative unit whose local board of education has adopted a resolution to create a regional school that has been approved by the State Board of Education.school.

(3)        Principal. - The principal of a regional school.

(4)        Regional school. - A school created pursuant to G.S. 115C-238.62 which includes all of grades nine through twelve and may include grades seven and six through eight.

(5)        Regional school board of directors or board of directors. - The governing board of a regional school appointed pursuant to G.S. 115C-238.63."

SECTION 47.  G.S. 115C-238.62(c) reads as rewritten:

"(c)       Expansion of Regional School. - A local board of education may adopt a resolution stating its intent to join an existing regional school, which shall include the name of the regional school and the names of all other local boards of education which have previously adopted resolutions to create the regional school. The local board of education shall file a copy of the resolution with the State Board of Education. Following receipt of the petition request and after receiving comment from with the approval of the regional school board of directors, the State Board of Education may approve the expansion of the local board may join the existing regional school."

SECTION 48.  G.S. 115C-238.63(a)(4) reads as rewritten:

"(4)      Parent Advisory Council. of a child attending the school. - The Parent Advisory Council established by G.S. 115C-238.69 other members of the board shall appoint a member to the board of directors from among the Council membership. parents of children attending the school. The member appointed by the Council That member shall serve a term of four years or until the child of the parent no longer attends the regional school.school, whichever is sooner."

SECTION 49.  G.S. 115C-238.66(1)a. reads as rewritten:

"a.        The board of directors shall establish the standard course of study for the regional school. This course of study shall set forth the subjects to be taught in each grade and the texts and other educational materials on each subject to be used in each grade. The board of directors shall design its programs to meet at least the student performance basic standards adopted by the State Board of Education and the student performance standards contained in this Chapter."

SECTION 50.  G.S. 115C-238.68(2) reads as rewritten:

"(2)      Teachers. - The board of directors shall employ and contract with necessary teachers to perform the particular service for which they are employed in the school. At least fifty percent (50%) of teachers employed by the board of directors shall hold teacher certificates, unless waived by the State Board of Education upon submission of a request by the board of directors.certificates."

SECTION 51.  G.S. 115C-238.69 is repealed.

SECTION 52.  G.S. 115C-264.2 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-264.2.  Vending machine sales.

(a)        Each school may, with the approval of the local board of education, sell to students beverages in vending machines during the school day so long as:as

(1)        Soft soft drinks are not sold (i) during the breakfast and lunch periods, (ii) at elementary schools, or (iii) contrary to the requirements of the National School Lunch Program;Program.

(2)        Sugared carbonated soft drinks, including mid-calorie carbonated soft drinks, are not offered for sale in middle schools;

(3)        Not more than fifty percent (50%) of the offerings for sale to students in high schools are sugared carbonated soft drinks;

(4)        Diet carbonated soft drinks are not considered in the same category as sugared carbonated soft drinks; and

(5)        Bottled water products are available in every school that has beverage vending.

(b)        Nothing in subsection (a) of this section prohibits a school from adopting stricter policies with respect to beverage vending.

(c)        Snack vending in all schools shall, by school year 2006-2007, meet the Proficient Level of the NC Eat Smart Nutrition Standards, such that in elementary schools, no snack vending is available to students, and in middle and high schools, seventy-five percent (75%) of snack vending products have not more than 200 calories per portion or snack vending package."

SECTION 53.  G.S. 115C-271 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-271.  Selection by local board of education, term of office.

(a)        It is the policy of the State that each local board of education has the sole discretion to elect a superintendent of schools. However, the State Board shall adopt rules that establish the qualifications for election. At a minimum, each superintendent shall have been a principal in a North Carolina public school or candidate for superintendent shall have other leadership, management, and administrative experience. In addition, the State Board shall adopt rules that include minimum credentials, educational prerequisites, and relevant experience requirements that would qualify a person to serve as a superintendent without having direct experience or certification as an educator. It is the duty of each local board to elect a superintendent who is qualified. If a local board elects a superintendent who is not qualified or who cannot qualify under this section, then the election and contract are null and void, and the board shall elect a person who is qualified.

(d)        A local board may terminate the superintendent's contract before the contract term of employment has expired so long as all the following conditions are met:expired.

(1)        No State funds are used for this purpose.

(2)        Local funds appropriated for teachers, textbooks, or classroom materials, supplies, and equipment are not transferred or used for this purpose.

(3)        The local board makes public the funds that are to be transferred or used for this purpose.

(4)        The local board notifies the State Board of the funds that are to be transferred or used for this purpose.

(5)        No funds acquired through donation or fund-raising are used for this purpose, except for funds raised specifically for this purpose or for funds donated by private for-profit corporations.

Immediately upon receipt of the notification from a local board under this subsection, the State Board shall review the accounts of that local school administrative unit. If the State Board finds that the local board failed to meet all the conditions set out in this subsection, the State Board shall issue a warning to the local board as provided in G.S. 115C-451 and, in addition to any other actions the State Board may take under G.S. 115C-451, shall order the local board to take action to comply with this subsection."

SECTION 54.  G.S. 115C-276 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-276.  Duties of superintendent.

(j)         To Assist the Local Board in Electing Elect School Personnel. - It shall be the duty of the superintendent to recommend and the board of education to elect all principals, teachers, and other school personnel in the administrative unit.

(j1)       To Employ Assistant Superintendents and Supervisors. - The superintendent shall have the authority to employ assistant superintendents and supervisors pursuant to the provisions of G.S. 115C-278 and G.S. 115C-284(g).

(j2)       To Make Rules Concerning the Conduct and Duties of Personnel. - The superintendent shall have full power to make all just and needful rules and regulations governing the conduct of teachers, principals, and supervisors, the kind of reports they shall make, and their duties in the care of school property.

(j3)       To Adopt Rules and Policies Limiting the Noninstructional Duties of Teachers. - The superintendent shall adopt rules and policies limiting the noninstructional duties assigned to teachers. A superintendent may temporarily suspend the policies for individual schools upon a finding that there is a compelling reason the policies should not be implemented. These policies shall ensure that:

(1)        Teachers with initial certification are not assigned extracurricular activities unless they request the assignments in writing and that other noninstructional duties assigned to these teachers are minimized thus allowing these teachers an opportunity to develop into skilled professionals;

(2)        Teachers with 27 or more years of experience are not assigned extracurricular activities unless they request the assignments in writing and that other noninstructional duties assigned to these teachers are minimized thus allowing these teachers an opportunity to informally share their experience and expertise with their colleagues;

(3)        The noninstructional duties of all teachers are limited to the extent possible given federal, State, and local laws, rules, and policies and that the noninstructional duties required of teachers are distributed equitably among employees.

(j4)       To Approve the Assignment of Duties to an Assistant Principal. - The superintendent shall permit certain duties of the principal to be assigned to an assistant or acting principal pursuant to the provisions of G.S. 115C-289.

(j5)       To Provide for Training of Teachers. - The superintendent is authorized to provide for the training of teachers as provided in G.S. 115C-300.

(j6)       To Determine the Hours of Employment for Teacher Assistants. - The superintendent shall determine the hours of employment for teacher assistants.

(q)        To Assign School Principals. - Subject to local board policy, the The superintendent shall have the authority to assign principals to school buildings. When making an assignment, the superintendent shall consider (i) whether a principal has demonstrated the leadership ability to increase student achievement at a school where conditions indicated a significant risk of low student performance; and (ii) how to maintain stability at a school where, during the time the principal has been at a school, there has been significant improvement on end-of-course or end-of-grade tests and other accountability measures developed by the State Board of Education.

(s)        To Provide for Annual Evaluations and Mandatory Improvement Plans. - The superintendent shall provide for the development and implementation of annual evaluation evaluations of all licensed employees assigned to low-performing schools that did not receive an assistance team. employees. The superintendent shall determine whether all principals and assistant principals who evaluate licensed employees are trained in the proper administration of the employee evaluations and the development of appropriate mandatory improvement plans. The superintendent also shall arrange for principals and assistant principals who evaluate licensed employees to receive the appropriate training.

(u)        To Encourage High Schools to Designate a Career Development Coordinator. - The superintendent shall encourage high schools to designate the Career Development Coordinator or other designee of the local Career and Technical Education administrator to be the point person for local businesses to contact. If the person selected is a teacher, the teacher shall work with the principal and the local Career and Technical Education administrator to find time in the school day to contact businesses and develop opportunities for students. The high school shall include a variety of trades and skilled labor positions for students to interact with and shadow and shall encourage students who may be interested in a job shadowing opportunity to pursue and set up the job shadow.

The superintendent shall develop a policy with provisions for students who are absent from school while doing a job shadow to make up the work. Students shall not be counted as absent when participating in these work-based learning opportunities or in Career and Technical Education student organization activities. Local boards may determine maximum numbers of days to be used for job shadowing activities.

(v)        To Adopt Policies Regarding the Use of Unlicensed Health Care Personnel to Perform the Technical Aspects of Medication Administration to Students. - The superintendent may adopt policies permitting schools to use unlicensed health care personnel to perform the technical aspects of medication administration to students. If the superintendent adopts such policies, the policies and procedures shall be consistent with the requirements of Article 9A of Chapter 90 of the General Statutes and shall include the following:

(1)        Training and competency evaluation of medication aides as provided for under G.S. 131E-270.

(2)        Requirements for listing under the Medication Aide Registry as provided for under G.S. 131E-271.

(3)        Requirements for supervision of medication aides by licensed health professionals or appropriately qualified supervisory personnel consistent with Articles 5, 6, 10, and 16 of Chapter 131E of the General Statutes."

SECTION 55.  G.S. 115C-277 is repealed.

SECTION 56.  G.S. 115C-278 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-278.  Assistant superintendent and associate superintendent.

Local boards of education The superintendent shall have authority to employ an assistant superintendent, in addition to those that may be furnished by the State when, in the discretion of the board of education, the schools of the administrative unit can thereby be more efficiently and more economically operated and when funds for the same are provided in the current expense fund budget. The duties of such assistant superintendent shall be assigned by the superintendent with the approval of the board of education.superintendent.

Local boards of education may, upon the recommendation of the superintendent, elect The superintendent may employ assistant or associate superintendents for a term of from one to four years. The term may not, however, exceed the expiration date of the superintendent's contract, unless the remaining time of the superintendent's contract is less than one year. If there is less than one year remaining on the superintendent's contract, the assistant or associate superintendent shall be given a contract through the next school year.

The term of employment shall be stated in a written contract which shall be entered into between the board of education and the assistant or associate superintendent, a copy of which shall be filed with the Superintendent of Public Instruction as a matter of information. The assistant or associate superintendent may not be dismissed during the term to which he is elected except for misconduct of such a nature as to indicate he is unfit to continue in his position, incompetence, neglect of duty, or failure or refusal to carry out validly assigned duties."

SECTION 57.  G.S. 115C-284 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-284.  Method of selection and requirements.

(a)        Principals and supervisors shall be elected by the local boards of education upon the recommendation of the superintendent, in accordance with the provisions of G.S. 115C-276(j).employed by the superintendent.

(b)        In the city administrative units, principals shall be elected by the board of education of such administrative unit upon the recommendation of employed by the superintendent of city schools.

(b1)      To qualify for certification as a school administrator, an individual must meet all of the following requirements:

(1)        Submit a complete application to the State Board.local school administrative unit.

(2)        Pay the applicable fee.

(3)        Have a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or accredited university.

(4)        Have one of the following:

a.         A graduate degree from a public school administration program that meets the public school administration program approval standards established by the State Board of Education.

b.         A master's degree from an accredited college or accredited university and, by December 31, 1999, have completed a public school administration program that meets the public school administration program approval standards set by the State Board of Education.

c.         Education and training determined by the State Board of Education as equivalent.

(5)        Pass the exam adopted by the State Board.

(c1)      It is the policy of the State of North Carolina to maintain the highest quality principal and assistant principal education programs in order to enhance the competence of professional personnel certified in North Carolina. To ensure that principal and assistant principal preparation programs are upgraded to reflect a more rigorous course of study, the State Board of Education shall submit to the General Assembly not later than March 1, 1992, a plan to promote this policy. In developing this plan, the State Board shall consider (i) requiring these programs to include additional preparation for site-based decision making and for the additional autonomy being granted to local school units, (ii) enhancing program entrance requirements to include assessment of an applicant's ability to complete the program and to perform as a principal, and (iii) enhancing the overall content of the programs.

The State Board of Education, as lead agency in coordination and cooperation with the University Board of Governors and such other public and private agencies as are necessary, shall refine the several certification requirements, standards for approval of institutions of principal and assistant principal education, standards for institution-based innovative and experimental programs, and standards for improved efficiencies in the administration of the approved programs.

(c2)      The State Board of Education shall adopt new standards by July 1, 2008, for school administrator preparation programs. The new standards shall:

(1)        Be aligned with the revised standards for the evaluation of school executives and specifically address the use of the results of the Teacher Working Conditions Survey;

(2)        Require evidence of a high level of institutional commitment, including dedicated resources, for administrator preparation program improvements and redesign;

(7)        Require all candidates to complete a year-long internship; and

(8)        Require the development of portfolios for emerging leaders that provide evidence they are applying their training to actual school needs and challenges.

Institutions of higher education shall redesign their school administrator preparation programs to meet the new standards and report to the State Board of Education on the redesign by July 1, 2009.

(d)        Repealed by Session Laws 1989, c. 385, s. 1.

(d1)      It is the policy of the State of North Carolina that, subsequent to the adoption of a system of classroom teacher differentiation and prerequisites to candidacy for principal, a classroom teacher must have attained at least the second level of differentiation, have at least four years of classroom teaching experience, and possess, at least, a Masters Degree in Education Administration. This subsection shall not apply to educational personnel certified as of July 1, 1984.

(e)        It shall be unlawful for any board of education to employ or keep in service any principal or supervisor who neither holds nor is qualified to hold a certificate in compliance with the provision of the law or in accordance with the regulations of the State Board of Education.

(f)         The allotment of classified principals shall be one principal for each duly constituted school with seven or more state-allotted teachers.

(g)        Local boards of education The superintendent shall have authority to employ supervisors in addition to those that may be furnished by the State when, in the discretion of the board of education, the schools of the local school administrative unit can thereby be more efficiently and more economically operated and when funds for the same are provided in the current expense fund budget. The duties of such supervisors shall be assigned by the superintendent with the approval of the board of education.superintendent.

(h)        All principals and supervisors employed in the public schools of the State or in schools receiving public funds, shall be required either to hold or be qualified to hold a certificate in compliance with the provision of the law or in accordance with the regulations of the State Board of Education."

SECTION 58.  G.S. 115C-285(a)(2) reads as rewritten:

"(2)      Supervisors and classified principals paid on an hourly or other basis whether paid from State or from local funds may accumulate annual vacation leave days as follows: annual leave may be accumulated without any applicable maximum until June 30 of each year. On June 30 of each year, any supervisor or principals with more than 30 days of accumulated leave shall have the excess accumulation converted to sick leave so that only 30 days are carried forward to July 1 of the same year. All vacation leave taken by the employee will be upon the authorization of his immediate supervisor and under policies established by the local board of education. An employee shall be paid in a lump sum for accumulated annual leave not to exceed a maximum of 240 hours or 30 days when separated from service due to resignation, dismissal, reduction in force, death, or service retirement. Upon separation from service due to service retirement, any annual vacation leave over 30 days will convert to sick leave and may be used for creditable service at retirement in accordance with G.S. 135-4(e). If the last day of terminal leave falls on the last workday in the month, payment shall be made for the remaining nonworkdays in that month. Employees retiring on disability retirement may exhaust annual leave rather than be paid in a lump sum. The provisions of this subdivision shall be accomplished without additional State and local funds being appropriated for this purpose. The State Board of Education shall adopt rules and regulations for the administration of this subdivision."

SECTION 59.  G.S. 115C-286.1 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-286.1.  Evaluations of principals.

Local school administrative units Superintendents shall evaluate all principals and assistant principals at least once each year. Either the superintendent or the superintendent's designee shall conduct the evaluations.

The State Board of Education shall ensure that the standards and criteria for the evaluations include the accountability measures of teacher retention, teacher support, and school climate. The State Board shall revise its evaluation instruments to include these measures. A local board shall use the performance standards and criteria adopted by the State Board unless the The local board develops an alternative shall develop an evaluation that is properly validated and that includes the local board's standards and criteria similar to those adopted by the State Board.criteria."

SECTION 60.  G.S. 115C-287.1 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-287.1.  Method of employment of principals, assistant principals, supervisors, and directors.

(a)        (1)        Beginning July 1, 1995, all persons employed as school administrators shall be employed pursuant to this section.

(2)        Notwithstanding G.S. 115C-287.1(a)(1), the following school administrators shall be employed pursuant to G.S. 115C-325:

a.         School administrators who, as of July 1, 1995, are serving in a principal or supervisor position with career status in that position; and

b.         School administrators who, as of July 1, 1995, are serving in a principal or supervisor position and who are eligible to achieve career status on or before June 30, 1997.

A school administrator shall cease to be employed pursuant to G.S. 115C-325 if the school administrator: (i) voluntarily relinquishes career status or the opportunity to achieve career status through promotion, resignation, or otherwise; or (ii) is dismissed or demoted or whose contract is not renewed pursuant to G.S. 115C-325.

(3)        For purposes of this section, school administrator means a:

a.         Principal;

b.         Assistant principal;

c.         Supervisor; or

d.         Director,

whose major function includes the direct or indirect supervision of teaching or of any other part of the instructional program.

(4)        Nothing in this section shall be construed to confer career status on any assistant principal or director, or to make an assistant principal eligible for career status as an assistant principal or a director eligible for career status as a director.

(b)        Local boards of education Superintendents shall employ school administrators who are ineligible for career status as provided in G.S. 115C-325(c)(3), upon the recommendation of the superintendent. G.S. 115C-325(c)(3). The initial contract between a school administrator and a local board of education shall be for two to four years, ending on June 30 of the final 12 months of the contract. In the case of a subsequent contract between a principal or assistant principal and a local board of education, local school administrative unit, the contract shall be for a term of four years. In the case of an initial contract between a school administrator and a local board of education, the first year of the contract may be for a period of less than 12 months provided the contract becomes effective on or before September 1. A local board of education local school administrative unit may, with the written consent of the school administrator, extend, renew, or offer a new school administrator's contract at any time after the first 12 months of the contract so long as the term of the new, renewed, or extended contract does not exceed four years. Rolling annual contract renewals are not allowed. Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit the filling of an administrative position on an interim or temporary basis.

(c)        The term of employment shall be stated in a written contract that shall be entered into between the local board of education and the school administrator. The school administrator shall not be dismissed or demoted during the term of the contract except for the grounds and by the procedure by which a career teacher may be dismissed or demoted as set forth in G.S. 115C-325.

(d)        If a superintendent intends to recommend to the local board of education that the school administrator be offered a new, renewed, or extended contract, the superintendent shall submit the recommendation to the local board for action. The local board may approve the superintendent's recommendation or decide not to offer the school administrator a new, renewed, or extended school administrator's contract.

If a superintendent decides not to recommend that the local board of education offer a new, renewed, or extended school administrator's contract to the a school administrator, the superintendent shall give the school administrator written notice of his or her decision and the reasons for his or her decision no later than May 1 of the final year of the contract. The superintendent's reasons may not be arbitrary, capricious, discriminatory, personal, or political. No action by the local board superintendent or further notice to the school administrator shall be necessary unless the school administrator files with the superintendent a written request, within 10 days of receipt of the superintendent's decision, for a hearing before the local board. Failure to file a timely request for a hearing shall result in a waiver of the right to appeal the superintendent's decision. If a school administrator files a timely request for a hearing, the local board shall conduct a hearing pursuant to the provisions of G.S. 115C-45(c) and make a final decision on whether to offer the school administrator a new, renewed, or extended school administrator's contract.

If If, after the hearing, the local board decides not to offer the school administrator a new, renewed, or extended school administrator's contract, the local board shall notify the school administrator of its decision by June 1 of the final year of the contract. A decision not to offer the school administrator a new, renewed, or extended contract may be for any cause that is not arbitrary, capricious, discriminatory, personal, or political. The local board's decision not to offer the school administrator a new, renewed, or extended school administrator's contract is subject to judicial review in accordance with Article 4 of Chapter 150B of the General Statutes.

(e)        Repealed by Session Laws 1995, c. 369, s. 1.

(f)         If the superintendent or the local board of education fails to notify a school administrator by June 1 of the final year of the contract that the school administrator will not be offered a new school administrator's contract, the school administrator shall be entitled to 30 days of additional employment or severance pay beyond the date the school administrator receives written notice that a new contract will not be offered.

(g)        If, prior to appointment as a school administrator, the school administrator held career status as a teacher in the local school administrative unit in which he or she is employed as a school administrator, a school administrator shall retain career status as a teacher if the school administrator is not offered a new, renewed, or extended contract by the local board of education, unless the school administrator voluntarily relinquished that right or is dismissed or demoted pursuant to G.S. 115C-325.

(h)        An individual who holds a provisional assistant principal's certificate and who is employed as an assistant principal under G.S. 115C-284(c) shall be considered a school administrator for purposes of this section. Notwithstanding subsection (b) of this section, a local board local school administrative unit may enter into one-year contracts with a school administrator who holds a provisional assistant principal's certificate. If the school administrator held career status as a teacher in the local school administrative unit prior to being employed as an assistant principal and the State Board for any reason does not extend the school administrator's provisional assistant principal's certificate, the school administrator shall retain career status as a teacher unless the school administrator voluntarily relinquished that right or is dismissed or demoted under G.S. 115C-325. Nothing in this subsection or G.S. 115C-284(c) shall be construed to require a local board local school administrative unit to extend or renew the contract of a school administrator who holds a provisional assistant principal's certificate."

SECTION 61.  G.S. 115C-288 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-288.  Powers and duties of principal.

(c)        To Improve Instruction and Community Spirit. - The principal shall give suggestions to teachers for the improvement of instruction.

(h)        To Make Available School Budgets and School Improvement Plans. Budgets. - The principal shall maintain a copy of the school's current budget and school improvement plan, including any amendments to the plan, and shall allow parents of children in the school and other interested persons to review and obtain such documents in accordance with Chapter 132 of the General Statutes.

(l)         To Establish School Improvement Teams. - Each school year, the principal shall ensure that a school improvement team is established under G.S. 115C-105.27 for the purpose of developing, reviewing, and revising a school improvement plan.

."

SECTION 62.  G.S. 115C-289(a) reads as rewritten:

"(a)       Any duty or responsibility assigned to a principal by statute, State Board of Education regulation, or by the superintendent may, with the approval of the local board of education, may be assigned by the principal to an assistant principal designated by the local board of education principal or to an acting principal designated by a principal."

SECTION 63.(a)  G.S. 115C-296.2 is repealed.

SECTION 63.(b)  This section is effective when it becomes law, except that employees who achieve certification from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) prior to October 1, 2013, shall be paid on the NBPTS salary schedule so long as they maintain NBPTS certification.

SECTION 64.  G.S. 115C-295.5 and G.S. 115C-295.6 are repealed.

SECTION 65.  G.S. 115C-299(a) reads as rewritten:

"(a)       In the city administrative units, teachers shall be elected by the board of education of such administrative unit upon the recommendation of the superintendent of city schools.Teachers shall be elected employed by the county and city boards of education upon the recommendation of the superintendent, in accordance with the provisions of G.S. 115C-276(j).local superintendent."

SECTION 66.  G.S. 115C-310 is repealed.

SECTION 67.  G.S. 115C-315 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-315.  Hiring of school personnel.

(a)        Janitors and Maids. School Custodians. - In the city administrative units, janitors and maids shall be appointed by the board of education of such local school administrative unit upon the recommendation of School custodians shall be employed by the superintendent.

(b)        Election by Local Boards. Employment by the Superintendent. - School personnel shall be elected by the local board of education upon the recommendation of the superintendent, in accordance with the provisions of G.S. 115C-276(j).employed by the superintendent.

It is the policy of the State of North Carolina to encourage and provide for the most efficient and cost-effective method of meeting the needs of local school administrative units for noncertified support personnel. To this end, the State Board of Education shall recommend to the General Assembly by November 1, 1984, a system using factors and formulas to determine the total number of noncertified support personnel allotted to local school administrative units. The recommended system for allotting noncertified support personnel shall include the proposed State's funding obligation for these positions and shall be developed in consultation with school-based support personnel or their representatives.

."

SECTION 68.  G.S. 115C-335(a) reads as rewritten:

"(a)       Development of Performance Standards. - The State Board, in consultation with local Local boards of education, shall revise and develop uniform performance standards and criteria to be used in evaluating certified public school employees, including school administrators. These standards and criteria shall include improving student achievement, employee skills, and employee knowledge. The standards and criteria for school administrators also shall include building-level gains in student learning and effectiveness in providing for school safety and enforcing student discipline. The State Board shall develop rules regarding the use of these standards and criteria. The State Board also shall develop guidelines for evaluating superintendents. The guidelines shall include criteria for evaluating a superintendent's effectiveness in providing safe schools and enforcing student discipline."

SECTION 69.  G.S. 115C-375.4 is repealed.

SECTION 70.  G.S. 115C-407.15(a) reads as rewritten:

"(a)       As used in this Article, "bullying or harassing behavior" is any pattern of gestures or written, electronic, or verbal communications, or any physical act or any threatening communication, that takes place on school property, at any school-sponsored function, or on a school bus, and that:

(1)        Places a student or school employee in actual and reasonable fear of harm to his or her person or damage to his or her property; or

(2)        Creates or is certain to create a hostile environment by substantially interfering with or impairing a student's educational performance, opportunities, or benefits. For purposes of this section, "hostile environment" means that the victim subjectively views the conduct as bullying or harassing behavior and the conduct is objectively severe or pervasive enough that a reasonable person would agree that it is bullying or harassing behavior.

Bullying or harassing behavior includes, but is not limited to, acts reasonably perceived as being motivated by any actual or perceived differentiating characteristic, such as race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, gender, socioeconomic status, academic status, gender identity, physical appearance, sexual orientation, or mental, physical, developmental, or sensory disability, or by association with a person who has or is perceived to have one or more of these characteristics."

SECTION 71.  G.S. 115C-409(a) reads as rewritten:

"(a)       The Board Board, with the prior approval of the General Assembly, is authorized to accept, receive, use or reallocate to local school administrative units any federal funds, or aids, that may be appropriated now or hereafter by the federal government for the encouragement and improvement of any phase of the free public school program which, in the judgment of the Board, will be beneficial to the operation of the schools. However, the Board is not authorized to accept any such funds upon any condition that the public schools of this State shall be operated contrary to any provisions of the Constitution or statutes of this State."

SECTION 72.  G.S. 115C-451 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-451.  Reports to State Board of Education; failure to comply with School Budget Act.

(a)        The State Board of Education shall have authority to require local school administrative units to make such reports as it may deem advisable with respect to the financial operation of the public schools.

(b)        The State Board of Education shall be responsible for assuring that local boards of education comply with State laws and regulations regarding the budgeting, management, and expenditure of funds. When a local board of education willfully or negligently fails or refuses to comply with these laws and regulations, the State Board of Education shall issue a warning to the local board of education and direct it to take remedial action. In addition, the State Board may suspend the flexibility given to the local board under G.S. 115C-105.21A and may require the local board to use funds during the term of suspension only for the purposes for which they were allotted or for other purposes with the specific approval from the State Board. In addition, the State Board of Education shall not approve the curriculum implementation plan of a local school administrative unit that willfully or negligently fails or refuses to comply with these laws and regulations and shall revoke its approval of the plan for any such unit for which it has approved a plan.

(c)        If the local board of education, after warning, persists in willfully or negligently failing or refusing to comply with these laws and regulations, the State Board of Education shall by resolution assume control of the financial affairs of the local board of education and shall appoint an administrator to exercise the powers assumed. The adoption of a resolution shall have the effect of divesting the local board of education of its powers as to the adoption of budgets, expenditure of money, and all other financial powers conferred upon the local board of education by law."

SECTION 73.  G.S. 115C-521 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-521.  Erection of school buildings.

(a)        It shall be the duty of local boards of education to provide classroom facilities adequate to meet the requirements of G.S. 115C-47(10) and 115C-301. Local boards of education shall submit their long-range plans for meeting school facility needs to the State Board of Education by January 1, 1988, and every five years thereafter. In developing these plans, local boards of education shall consider the costs and feasibility of renovating old school buildings instead of replacing them.

(b)        It shall be the duty of the boards of education of the several local school administrative school units of the State to make provisions for the public school term by providing adequate school buildings equipped with suitable school furniture and apparatus. The needs and the cost of those buildings, equipment, and apparatus, shall be presented each year when the school budget is submitted to the respective tax-levying authorities. The boards of commissioners shall be given a reasonable time to provide the funds which they, upon investigation, shall find to be necessary for providing their respective units with buildings suitably equipped, and it shall be the duty of the several boards of county commissioners to provide funds for the same.

Upon determination by a local board of education that the existing permanent school building does not have sufficient classrooms to house the pupil enrollment anticipated for the school, the local board of education may acquire and use as temporary classrooms for the operation of the school, relocatable or mobile classroom units, whether built on the lot or not, which units and method of use shall meet the approval of the School Planning Division of the State Board of Education, and  which school. These units shall comply with all applicable requirements of the North Carolina State Building Code and of the local building and electrical codes applicable to the area in which the school is located. These units shall also be anchored in a manner required to assure their structural safety in severe weather. The acquisition and installation of these units shall be subject in all respects to the provisions of Chapter 143 of the General Statutes. The provisions of Chapter 87, Article 1, of the General Statutes, shall not apply to persons, firms or corporations engaged in the sale or furnishing to local boards of education and the delivery and installation upon school sites of classroom trailers as a single building unit or of relocatable or mobile classrooms delivered in less than four units or sections.

(c)        The building of all new school buildings and the repairing of all old school buildings shall be under the control and direction of, and by contract with, the board of education for which the building and repairing is done. If a board of education is considering building a new school building to replace an existing school building, the board shall not invest any construction money in the new building unless it submits to the State Superintendent and the State Superintendent submits to the North Carolina Historical Commission an analysis that compares the costs and feasibility of building the new building and of renovating the existing building and that clearly indicates the desirability of building the new building. No board of education shall invest any money in any new building until it has (i) developed plans based upon a consideration of the State Board's facilities guidelines, (ii) submitted these plans to the State Board for its review and comments, and (iii) reviewed the plans based upon a consideration of the comments it receives from the State Board. No local board of education shall contract for more money than is made available for the erection of a new building. However, this subsection shall not be construed so as to prevent boards of education from investing any money in buildings that are being constructed pursuant to a continuing contract of construction as provided for in G.S. 115C-441(c). All contracts for buildings shall be in writing and all buildings shall be inspected, received, and approved by the local superintendent and the architect before full payment is made therefor. Nothing in this subsection shall prohibit boards of education from repairing and altering buildings with the help of janitors and other regular employees of the board.

In the design and construction of new school buildings and in the renovation of existing school buildings that are required to be designed by an architect or engineer under G.S. 133-1.1, the local board of education shall participate in the planning and review process of the Energy Guidelines for School Design and Construction that are developed and maintained by the Department of Public Instruction and shall adopt local energy-use goals for building design and operation that take into account local conditions in an effort to reduce the impact of operation costs on local and State budgets. planning. In the design and construction of new school facilities and in the repair and renovation of existing school facilities, the local board of education shall consider the placement and design of windows to use the climate of North Carolina for both light and ventilation in case of power shortages. A local board shall also consider the installation of solar energy systems in the school facilities whenever practicable.

In the case of any school buildings erected, repaired, or equipped with any money loaned or granted by the State to any local school administrative unit, no board of education shall invest any money until it has (i) developed plans based upon a consideration of the State Board's facilities guidelines, (ii) submitted these plans to the State Board for its review and comments, and (iii) reviewed the plans based upon a consideration of the comments it receives from the State Board.

(c1)      No local board of education shall apply for a certificate of occupancy for any new middle or high school building until the plans for the science laboratory areas of the building have been reviewed and approved to meet accepted safety standards for school science laboratories and related preparation rooms and stockrooms. The review and approval of the plans may be done by the State Board of Education or by any other entity that is licensed or authorized by the State Board to do so.

(d)        Local boards of education shall make no contract for the erection of any school building unless the site upon which it is located is owned in fee simple by the board: Provided, that the board of education of a local school administrative unit, with the approval of the board of county commissioners, may appropriate funds to aid in the establishment of a school facility and the operation thereof in an adjoining local school administrative unit when a written agreement between the boards of education of the administrative units involved has been reached and the same recorded in the minutes of the boards, whereby children from the administrative unit making the appropriations shall be entitled to attend the school so established.

In all cases where title to property has been vested in the trustees of a special charter district which has been abolished and has not been reorganized, title to the property shall be vested in the local board of education of the county embracing the former special charter district.

(e)        The State Board of Education shall establish within the Department of Public Instruction a central clearinghouse for access by local boards of education that may want to use a prototype design in the construction of school facilities. The State Board shall compile necessary publications and a computer database to distribute information on prototype designs to local school administrative units. All architects and engineers registered in North Carolina may submit plans for inclusion in the computer database and these plans may be accessed by any person. The original architect of record or engineer of record shall retain ownership and liability for a prototype design. The State Board may adopt rules it considers necessary to implement this subsection."

SECTION 74.  G.S. 115C-522(a) reads as rewritten:

"(a)       It shall be the duty of local boards of education to purchase or exchange all supplies, equipment, and materials, and these purchases shall be made in accordance with Article 8 of Chapter 143 of the General Statutes. These purchases may be made from contracts made by the Department of Administration. Title to instructional supplies, office supplies, fuel and janitorial supplies, enumerated in the current expense fund budget and purchased out of State funds, shall be taken in the name of the local board of education which shall be responsible for the custody and replacement: Provided, that no contracts shall be made by any local school administrative unit for purchases unless provision has been made in the budget of the unit to pay for the purchases, unless surplus funds are on hand to pay for the purchases, or unless the contracts are made pursuant to G.S. 115C-47(28) and G.S. 115C-528 and adequate funds are available to pay in the current fiscal year the sums obligated for the current fiscal year. The State Board of Education shall adopt rules regarding equipment standards for supplies, equipment, and materials related to student transportation. The State Board may adopt guidelines for any commodity that needs safety features. If a commodity that needs safety features is available on statewide term contract, any guidelines adopted by the State Board must at a minimum meet the safety standards of the statewide term contract. Compliance with Article 8 of Chapter 143 of the General Statutes is not mandatory for the purchase of published books, manuscripts, maps, pamphlets, and periodicals.

(1)        Where competition is available, local school administrative units may utilize the: utilitze:

a.         The E-Quote service of the NC E-Procurement system as one means of solicitation in seeking informal bids for purchases subject to the bidding requirements of G.S. 143-131; and

b.         The Division of Purchase and Contract's electronic Interactive Purchasing System as one means of advertising formal bids on purchases subject to the bidding requirements of G.S. 143-129 and applicable rules regarding advertising. This sub-subdivision does not prohibit a local school administrative unit from using other methods of advertising.

c.         Any other system, in the discretion of the local board.

(2)        In order to provide an efficient transition of purchasing procedures, the Secretary of the Department of Administration and the local school administrative units shall establish a local school administrative unit purchasing user group. The user group shall be comprised of a proportionate number of representatives from the Department of Administration and local school administrative unit purchasing and finance officers. The user group shall examine any issues that may arise between the Department of Administration and local school administrative units, including the new relationship between the Department and the local school administrative units, the appropriate exchange of information, the continued efficient use of E-Procurement, appropriate bid procedures, and any other technical assistance that may be necessary for the purchase of supplies and materials."

SECTION 75.  G.S. 115C-526 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-526.  Reward for information leading to arrest of persons damaging school property.

Local boards of education are authorized and empowered to offer and pay rewards in an amount not exceeding three hundred dollars ($300.00) five thousand dollars ($5,000) for information leading to the arrest and conviction of any  persons who willfully deface, damage, destroy or commit acts of vandalism or larceny of, the property belonging to the public school system under the jurisdiction of and administered by any local board of education."

SECTION 76.  G.S. 115C-528(a) reads as rewritten:

"(a)       Local boards of education may purchase or finance the purchase of automobiles; school buses; mobile classroom units; food service equipment, photocopiers; and computers, computer hardware, computer software, and related support services by lease purchase contracts and installment purchase contracts as provided in this section. Computers, computer hardware, computer software, and related support services purchased under this section shall meet the technical standards specified in the North Carolina Instructional Technology Plan as developed and approved under G.S. 115C-102.6A and G.S. 115C-102.6B."

SECTION 77.  Section 3 of S.L. 2006-232, as rewritten by Section 1 of S.L. 2011-234, reads as rewritten:

"SECTION 3. This act is effective when it becomes law and is repealed effective July 1, 2015.July 1, 2013."

SECTION 78.  G.S. 115C-546.2 reads as rewritten:

" 115C-546.2.  Allocations from the Fund; uses; expenditures; reversion to General Fund; matching requirements.

(a)        Of the monies Monies credited to the Fund by the Secretary of Revenue pursuant to G.S. 115C-546.1(b), the State Board of Education may allocate up to one million dollars ($1,000,000) each year to the Department of Public Instruction. These funds shall be used by the Plant Operation Section of the School Support Division to assist each local school administrative unit with effective energy and environmental management, effective water management, hazardous material management, clean air quality, and engineering support for safe, effective environmental practices. The remainder of the monies in the Fund G.S. 115C-546.1(b) shall be allocated to the counties on a per average daily membership basis according to the average daily membership for the budget year as determined and certified by the State Board of Education. Interest earned on funds allocated to each county shall be allocated to that county.

The Department of Public Instruction shall report to the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee by April 15 of each year on the effectiveness of the program in accomplishing its purpose and on any other information requested by the Committee.

(b)        Counties shall use monies in the Fund for capital outlay projects including the planning, construction, reconstruction, enlargement, improvement, repair, or renovation of public school buildings and for the purchase of land for public school buildings; for equipment to implement a local school technology plan that is approved pursuant to G.S. 115C-102.6C; or for both. Monies used to implement a local school technology plan shall be transferred to the State School Technology Fund and allocated by that Fund to the local school administrative unit for equipment.

As used in this section, "public school buildings" only includes facilities for individual schools that are used for instructional and related purposes and does not include centralized administration, maintenance, or other facilities.

In the event a county finds that it does not need all or part of the funds allocated to it for capital outlay projects including the planning, construction, reconstruction, enlargement, improvement, repair, or renovation of public school buildings, for the purchase of land for public school buildings, or for equipment to implement a local school technology plan, the unneeded funds allocated to that county may be used to retire any indebtedness incurred by the county for public school facilities.

In the event a county finds that its public school building needs and its school technology needs can be met in a more timely fashion through the allocation of financial resources previously allocated for purposes other than school building needs or school technology needs and not restricted for use in meeting public school building needs or school technology needs, the county commissioners may, with the concurrence of the affected local Board of Education, use those financial resources to meet school building needs and school technology needs and may allocate the funds it receives under this Article for purposes other than school building needs or school technology needs to the extent that financial resources were redirected from such purposes. The concurrence described herein shall be secured in advance of the allocation of the previously unrestricted financial resources and shall be on a form prescribed by the Local Government Commission.

(c)        Monies in the Fund allocated for capital projects shall be matched on the basis of one dollar of local funds for every three dollars of State funds. Monies in the Fund transferred to the State Technology Fund do not require a local match.

Revenue received from local sales and use taxes that is restricted for public school capital outlay purposes pursuant to G.S. 105-502 or G.S. 105-487 may be used to meet the local matching requirement. Funds expended by a county after July 1, 1986, for land acquisition, engineering fees, architectural fees, or other directly related costs for a public school building capital project that was not completed prior to July 1, 1987, may be used to meet the local match requirement.

(d)        Monies transferred into the Fund in accordance with Chapter 18C of the General Statutes shall be allocated for capital projects for school construction projects as follows:on a per average daily membership basis.

(1)        A sum equal to sixty-five percent (65%) of those monies transferred in accordance with G.S. 18C-164 shall be allocated on a per average daily membership basis according to the average daily membership for the budget year as determined and certified by the State Board of Education.

(2)        A sum equal to thirty-five percent (35%) of those monies transferred in accordance with G.S. 18C-164 shall be allocated to those local school administrative units located in whole or part in counties in which the effective county tax rate as a percentage of the State average effective tax rate is greater than one hundred percent (100%), with the following definitions applying to this subdivision:

a.         "Effective county tax rate" means the actual county rate for the previous fiscal year, including any countywide supplemental taxes levied for the benefit of public schools, multiplied by a three-year weighted average of the most recent annual sales assessment ratio studies.

b.         "State average effective tax rate" means the average effective county tax rates for all counties.

c.         "Sales assessment ratio studies" means sales assessment ratio studies performed by the Department of Revenue under G.S. 105-289(h).

(3)        No county shall have to provide matching funds required under subsection (c) of this section.

(4)        A county may use monies in this Fund to pay for school construction projects in local school administrative units and to retire indebtedness incurred for school construction projects.

(5)        A county may not use monies in this Fund to pay for school technology needs. For July 1, 2013, through June 30, 2016, a county at the request of a local school administrative unit may use monies in this Fund to pay for digital learning needs such as school connectivity, digital textbooks and instructional resources, or digital devices in local school administrative units. A county that uses these funds for digital learning needs shall also use a portion of the funds to ensure high-quality, ongoing professional development for teachers.

Effective July 1, 2016, a county, at the request of a local school administrative unit, may use monies in this Fund for digital learning needs only if the State Board of Education determines that the local school administrative unit has demonstrated consistent improvement and growth in student outcomes."

SECTION 79.  There is appropriated from the General Fund to the Department of Public Instruction the sum of two million two hundred thousand dollars ($2,200,000) for the 2013-2014 fiscal year and the sum of two million two hundred thousand dollars ($2,200,000) for the 2014-2015 fiscal year. These funds shall be used to assist local school administrative units in the development and implementation of their curriculum implementation plans, to monitor the implementation of those plans, and for auditing teams, in accordance with this act.

SECTION 80.  Except as otherwise provided, this act is effective when it becomes law and applies beginning with the 2013-2014 school year.