Bill Summary for S 291 (2023-2024)
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AN ACT TO EXTEND THE EXPIRATION DATE TO HOLD HARMLESS CERTAIN FACILITIES WHEN THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES RESUMES ENVIRONMENTAL RATING SCALE (ERS) ASSESSMENTS FOR LICENSED CHILD CARE FACILITIES AND TO REQUIRE THE NORTH CAROLINA CHILD CARE COMMISSION TO COMPLETE RECOMMENDATIONS FOR STAR-RATING SYSTEM REFORM AND REPORT THOSE RECOMMENDATIONS TO THE JOINT LEGISLATIVE OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE ON HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES.Intro. by Burgin, Chaudhuri, Krawiec.
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Identical to H 344, filed 3/9/23.
Amends Section 2 of SL 2021-127 to have the Division of Child Development and Early Education (Division), when evaluating child care centers for quality rating improvement system "education points," to lower their percentage threshold from 75% to 50% of lead teachers having met the requirements for the facility to obtain credit towards its rating until June 30, 2026 (was, June 30, 2023) if the facility’s percentage threshold for its lead teachers was 75%. Makes a conforming change to the act's effective date provision.
Amends Section 3 of SL 2021-127 to have Section 1 of the session law expire on June 30, 2024, instead of expiring six months after revocation of governor’s declaration of emergency due to COVID-19 (Section 1 prohibits the Division, when it resumes environmental rating scale (ERS) (star rating) assessments, from requiring a licensed child care facility to undergo an ERS assessment if conducting the assessment would cause the child care facility to lose a star rating due to (1) the facility's loss in educators who enabled the facility to meet the star-rating requirements and (2) its inability to replace those educators, within a reasonable period of time, with individuals having similar levels of education).
Requires the North Carolina Child Care Commission (Commission) to complete recommendations for quality rating improvement system (QRIS/Star-Rating System) reform by March 31, 2024, and submit its QRIS reform recommendations to the specified joint NCGA committee before the 2024 Legislative Session begins. Requires the Commission's QRIS reform recommendations to include accreditations from national early childhood education (ECE) accreditation organizations as an alternative pathway for licensed child care programs to earn a star rating equivalent to each accreditation's standards, including accreditations from any of seven specified organizations.