AN ACT TO PROVIDE THAT THE RESIDENTIAL SCHOOLS FOR STUDENTS WITH VISUAL AND HEARING IMPAIRMENTS ARE GOVERNED BY A BOARD OF TRUSTEES AND FUNCTION SIMILARLY AS LOCAL SCHOOL ADMINISTRATIVE UNITS.
Makes the following changes to Article 9C, Schools for Students with Visual and Hearing Impairments, of GS Chapter 115C.
Amends GS 115C-150.11 to specify that the State Board of Education (State Board) has general supervision and administration responsibilities for the Governor Morehead School for the Blind, the Eastern North Carolina School for the Deaf, and the North Carolina School for the Deaf ([the residential schools] previously, charged the State Board as the sole governing agency). Houses the residential schools administratively within the Department of Public Instruction (DPI). Provides for each residential school to operate independently through a board of trustees. Directs each board of trustees to appoint a school director to act as secretary to the board and manage school personnel, day-to-day operations, and the operating budget, at the direction of the respective board (previously, charged the Superintendent of Public Instruction with administration, staff appointment, and oversight of the schools).
Enacts GS 115C-150.11A to provide parameters for the appointment of an 11-member board of trustees for each residential school by the General Assembly, the Governor, and the State Board chair. Provides for staggered six-year terms, with certain members serving initial terms of three years. Provides for board vacancies, chair, quarterly meetings, member expenses, and procedures.
Provides for corporate powers for the boards of trustees of the schools, as specified. Amends the applicability provisions of the Chapter set out in GS 115C-150.12 to specify that the requirements for the Chapter for schools and local school administrative units apply to the schools. Deems each residential school to be a local school administrative unit for purposes of federal law and the administration of state law.
Amends GS 115C-150.13 to direct each board of trustees to adopt necessary rules for the administration of the residential school to implement the Article's requirements, including admission criteria (previously required the State Board to adopt rules necessary for DPI to implement the Article). Subjects the boards of trustees to rules adopted by the State Board pursuant to GS Chapter 150B.
Makes further conforming and technical changes to the Article.
Repeals Section 10 of SL 2013-247 (which authorizes DPI to reorganize residential school staff); Section 10.21A(g) of SL 2010-31 (which transfers certain Department of Health and Human Services personnel to DPI); Section 7.25(c) of SL 2011-145 (which authorized DPI to establish a principal position at a residential school which was not assigned a principal position); and Section 8.15(b) of SL 2013-360 (which directs DPI to retain receipts from residential school building space rentals for staffing and operation of the residential schools).
Directs DPI to retain all proceeds generated from the rental of building space on the residential school campuses beginning with the 2020-21 fiscal year and allocate all receipts generated from the leases to the boards of trustees, in equal amounts, to staff and operate each school. Prohibits the use of the receipts for supporting DPI administrative functions.
Authorizes DPI to continue its administrative duties and responsibilities for the residential schools as of June 30, 2020, until the board of trustees for each school has successfully transitioned into the administrative role, no later than October 1, 2020.
Appropriates $1.5 million in recurring funds from the General Fund to DPI for the 2020-21 fiscal year to be allocated to the residential schools for operating expenses and personnel.
Provides that the above provisions are effective July 1, 2020.
Direct the appointing authorities to appoint the initial members of the boards of trustees for each the residential schools by May 1, 2020, to take office effective July 1, 2020.
Directs DPI to develop a transition plan, in collaboration with the personnel from each residential school, for the administrative changes that become effective July 1, 2020. Directs DPI to report to the specified NCGA committee by December 15, 2019, on the transition plan.
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