INSTRUCTIONAL MATERIAL SELECTION.

View NCGA Bill Details2019-2020 Session
House Bill 315 (Public) Filed Thursday, March 7, 2019
AN ACT TO MODERNIZE THE SELECTION OF INSTRUCTIONAL MATERIALS FOR NORTH CAROLINA PUBLIC SCHOOLS.
Intro. by Elmore, Arp, Johnson.

Status: Re-ref to Education/Higher Education. If fav, re-ref to Rules and Operations of the Senate (Senate action) (May 24 2019)
H 315

Bill Summaries:

  • Summary date: Mar 26 2019 - More information

    House committee substitute to the 1st edition makes the following changes.

    Amends the proposed definition of supplemental material for new Part 3C, now defining the term to mean educational materials that supplement specific instruction for the standard course of study selected and procured by a local board of education for a grade or course or general education needs of the school (previously did not specify materials selected and procured by a local board). Additionally, amends the proposed definition of unfit materials, now defining the term to mean instructional or supplemental materials determined to be inappropriate for use in either an elementary or secondary school because the material is either (1) obscene; (2) inappropriate to the age, maturity, or grade level of students; or (3) not aligned with the standard course of study (previously, included material educationally unsuitable or pervasively vulgar; did not include material that is obscene or not aligned with the standard course of study). Makes conforming changes throughout proposed Part 3C, Selection of Instructional Material, to Article 8, General Education, of GS Chapter 115C concerning challenges to and determinations of unfit materials.

    Specifies that local boards are required to adopt written policies concerning selection and procurement of supplemental materials for a grade or course or for general education needs at a school or throughout the entire local school administrative unit (previously, generally required written policies for the selection and procurement of supplemental materials).

    Now provides for electronic and written notice to be provided by a local board to all parents of students in the local unit, in the same manner as provided in GS 115C-102.50 (as enacted), of the opportunity to review materials in the program repository when adopting, modifying, or amending a health and safety program and the instructional and supplemental materials of that program (previously, GS 115C-102.35 provided for separate and distinct notice requirements for the public and for parents, and distinct from those provided in GS 115C-102.50). Maintains the previously specified required contents of the notice. Makes a conforming deletion.

    Clarifies that the continuous repository local boards of education are required to maintain is of current instructional and supplemental materials that have been selected and purchased by the local boards pursuant to Article 8 (previously, instructional and supplemental materials purchased by local boards). Further specifies that classroom materials developed by teachers are not required to be included in the repository.

    Provides that optional supplemental materials available through the school library are not included in the materials that can be challenged on the grounds that they are unfit and evaluated by local community media advisory committees created pursuant to proposed GS 115C-102.60.


  • Summary date: Mar 7 2019 - More information

    Repeals Part 3 of Article 8 of GS Chapter 115C concerning general education textbooks.

    Enacts Part 3C to Article 8, Selection of Instructional Material.

    Provides definitions for Part 3C, including defining the terms health and safety programs, instructional materials, local committee, parent, State Committee, supplemental materials, and unfit materials

    Directs local boards of education to select and adopt instructional materials for each standard course of study at each instructional level in the elementary school and the secondary school adopted by the State Board of Education (State Board). Allows local boards to require certified expert employees evaluate materials being considered for adoption, as specified. 

    Directs local boards to adopt written policies for the selection and procurement of supplemental materials. Grants local boards the sole authority regarding selection and procurement of supplemental materials. Specifies that supplemental materials cannot displace or be used to the exclusion of instructional materials. 

    Requires local boards to hold a public hearing after at least 10 days' public notice when adopting, modifying, or amending a health and safety program and its instructional and supplemental materials. Further, requires 60 days' electronic and written notice to all parents and students in the local school administrative unit (local unit) of the hearing and the opportunity to review the materials in the program repository. Details parental notice requirements.

    Requires State Board allocation and appropriations in the current expense or capital outlay budgets of local units to be used by local boards for the purchase, lease, or rental of instructional or supplemental materials and for hardware, software, or other equipment necessary for the use of the materials. Vests the title of the materials with the local board. Encourages partnership with other local boards or public schools to jointly purchase materials. Includes conditions for the purchase of instructional materials. Requires local board to publish on the local unit's website the title, author, and publisher of all materials purchased.

    Requires public elementary and secondary school students be provided with free instructional materials, with proper care and return. Further details the provision and maintenance of instructional and supplemental materials. Authorizes the assessment of damage fees against a student's parent or legal guardian for abuse or loss of instructional or supplemental materials or equipment necessary for the use of the materials under rules adopted by the local board.

    Requires local boards to maintain a continuous repository of currently purchased instructional supplemental materials, maintained at a central location for in-person review upon request, with the names of the materials posted to the local unit's website for review. Details requirements regarding the maintenance of a continuous repository of current objectives, entire curricula, texts, and all other materials used in any health and safety program. Requires 14 days' electronic and written notice each school year to parents of students participating in a health and safety program of the right to review the objectives, complete materials, and entire curriculum of the program in the repository. Details further requirements for the parental notice. 

    Authorizes any parent, guardian, or person in the place of the parent to purchase any instructional material needed for any public school student from the local board in which the student is enrolled. Authorizes local boards to dispose of discontinued instructional or supplemental materials. 

    Requires every local board to establish a local community media advisory committee to investigate and evaluate challenges to instructional and supplemental materials on the grounds that they are unfit. Requires the local committee to include a principal, teacher, and parent each from a high school, middle school, and elementary school. Provides for submitting challenges to materials, hearings on challenges, recommendations from the committee on the material's retention or removal, and the local board's subsequent determination. Limits the local committee's determination to considering whether the material is unfit on the grounds of being educationally unsuitable; pervasively vulgar; or inappropriate to the age, maturity, or grade level of the students. Provides for an appeal to the State Community Media Advisory Committee if the local board determines the challenged material will be retained.

    Establishes the State Community Media Advisory Committee to review challenged material appeals. Provides for the Committee's membership and member recusal. Requires the State Board to designate the form and manner for appeals. Provides for an appeal hearing to be held within four weeks of filing. Limits the Committee's determination to considering whether the material is unfit on the grounds of being educationally unsuitable; pervasively vulgar; or inappropriate to the age, maturity, or grade level of the students. Requires the Committee to make a recommendation to the State Board within two weeks of the hearing. Requires the State Board to make a final determination, not subject to appeal, as to the challenged material at the next meeting following the receipt of the Committee's recommendation. Requires the local board to remove the material if that is the decision of the State Board. 

    Amends GS 115C-11, changing the voting requirements for the adoption of textbooks by the State Board. Now requires the majority of State Board members present and voting to carry a motion, with a roll call vote on each motion (previously, required majority vote of the whole membership). Makes conforming changes. 

    Makes conforming repeal of GS 115C-12(9)b., which required the State Board to adopt and supply textbooks.

    Makes conforming changes to GS 115C-12(9c)c, GS 115C-12(18)d., GS 115C-47(6), GS 115C-47(33), GS 115C-47(33a), GS 115C-75.10(c)., GS 115C-81.25(d), GS 115C-242(3), GS 115C-271(d)(2), GS 115C-384(c), GS 115C-390.2(l)(1), GS 115C-390.5(c)(1), GS 115C-398, and GS 143C-9-7(b).

    Makes conforming repeals of GS 115C-81.5(b)(3) and GS 115C-81.25(b)(3). Repeals GS 143A-48, which transferred the Textbook Commission to the Department of Public Instruction (DPI).

    Effective July 1, 2019, designates the existing Textbooks and Digital Resources funding allotment in the State Public School Fund as the Instructional Materials funding allotment in the Fund. Directs the State Board to establish the purposes for which re-designated funds can be used, as specified. 

    Makes conforming changes to GS 115C-105.25(b)(12) and GS 115C-81.30(c). 

    Prohibits the State Board from renewing contracts or entering new contracts for textbooks or instructional materials. Requires the State Board make any textbooks or instructional materials available through existing contracts available to local boards for purchase.

    Authorizes local boards, by resolution, to continue use of previously adopted State textbooks for a standard course of study until the course is revised by the State Board. 

    Specifies that no local board is required to hold a public hearing pursuant to the act for any health and safety program in use prior to the 2018-19 school year until that program is amended, modified, or replaced. Requires all local boards to establish a program repository of current health and safety programs for access to parents prior to the start of the 2019-20 school year. Prohibits implementation of any program until the current program is included in the repository. 

    Effective July 1, 2019, and applies beginning with the 2019-20 school year. 


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