AN ACT TO ESTABLISH THE "APSEED" PILOT PROJECT AND APPROPRIATE FUNDS FOR THAT PURPOSE.
Directs the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), Division of Child Development and Early Education (Division), to establish a three-year pilot project to implement the "ApSeed" program, which aims to prepare children for prekindertarten through an interactive learning device (a "seedling"). Requires Forsyth, Hoke, New Hanover, Watauga, and Yadkin counties to participate in the project. Directs the participating counties to select children to participate in the program based on greatest need.
Appropriates from the General Fund to the Division $2.5 million in nonrecurring funds for each year of the 2019-21 fiscal biennium to provide for associated equipment and costs for the project. Directs the funds to be allocated to the five participating counties in an amount up to $500,000 for each year of the biennium, as determined by the Division.
Requires the Director of the Budget, for the 2021-22 fiscal year only, to include in the base budget the amount of nonrecurring funds needed to support the project, with any unexpended funds reverting back to the General Fund upon completion of the project.
Directs the Division to report to the specified NCGA Committees and Division within six months of the project's completion. Details six components required to be included in the report, including the number of children served by age and county, skills gained, the extent of parental involvement, total project costs, and the amount of funds needed to expand the program statewide.
Effective July 1, 2019.