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The Florida Statutes

The 2001 Florida Statutes

Title XVI
Education
Chapter 230
District School System
View Entire Chapter
Section 230.23, Florida Statutes 2001

230.23  Powers and duties of school board.--The school board, acting as a board, shall exercise all powers and perform all duties listed below:

(1)  REQUIRE MINUTES AND RECORDS TO BE KEPT.--Require the superintendent, as secretary, to keep such minutes and records as are necessary to set forth clearly all actions and proceedings of the school board.

(a)  Minutes, recording.--The minutes of each meeting shall be reviewed, corrected if necessary, and approved at the next regular meeting; provided, that this action may be taken at an intervening special meeting if the board desires. The minutes shall be kept as a public record in a permanent location.

(b)  Minutes, contents.--The minutes shall show the vote of each member present on all matters on which the board takes action. It shall be the duty of each member to see to it that both the matter and his or her vote thereon are properly recorded in the minutes. Unless otherwise shown by the minutes, it shall be presumed that the vote of each member present supported any action taken by the board in either the exercise of, violation of, or neglect of the powers and duties imposed upon the board by law or legal regulation, whether such action is recorded in the minutes or is otherwise established. It shall also be presumed that the policies, appointments, programs, and expenditures not recorded in the minutes but made and actually in effect in the district school system were made and put into effect at the direction of the school board, unless it can be shown that they were done without the actual or constructive knowledge of the members of the board.

(2)  CONTROL PROPERTY.--Subject to rules of the state board, control property and convey the title to real and personal property.

(3)  ADOPT SCHOOL PROGRAM.--Adopt a school program for the entire school district.

(4)  ESTABLISHMENT, ORGANIZATION, AND OPERATION OF SCHOOLS.--Adopt and provide for the execution of plans for the establishment, organization, and operation of the schools of the district, including, but not limited to, the following:

(a)  Schools and enrollment plans.--Establish schools and adopt enrollment plans that may include school attendance areas and open enrollment provisions.

(b)  Elimination of school centers and consolidation of schools.--Provide for the elimination of school centers and the consolidation of schools.

(c)  Adequate educational facilities for all children without tuition.--Provide adequate educational facilities for all children without payment of tuition.

(d)  Cooperate with boards of adjoining districts in maintaining schools.--Approve plans for cooperating with school boards of adjoining districts in this state or in adjoining states for establishing school attendance areas composed of territory lying within the districts and for the joint maintenance of district-line schools or other schools which are to serve those attendance areas. The conditions of such cooperation shall be as follows:

1.  Establishment.--The establishment of a school to serve attendance areas lying in more than one district and the plans for maintaining the school and providing educational services to pupils shall be effected by annual resolutions spread upon the minutes of each school board concerned, which resolutions shall set out the territorial limits of the areas from which children are to attend the school and the plan to be followed in maintaining and operating the school.

2.  Control.--Control of the school or schools involved shall be vested in the school board of the district in which the school or schools are located unless otherwise agreed by the school boards.

3.  Settlement of disagreements.--In the event an agreement cannot be reached relating to such attendance areas or to the school or schools therein, the matter may be referred jointly by the cooperating school boards or by either school board to the Department of Education for decision under regulations of the state board, and its decision shall be binding on both school boards.

(e)  Classification and standardization of schools.--Provide for the classification and standardization of schools.

(f)  Opening and closing of schools; fixing uniform date.--Adopt policies for the opening and closing of schools and fix uniform dates.

(g)  Observance of school holidays and vacation periods.--Designate the observance of school holidays and vacation periods.

(h)  Vocational classes and schools.--Provide for the establishment and maintenance of vocational schools, departments, or classes, giving instruction in career education as defined by regulations of the state board, and use any moneys raised by public taxation in the same manner as moneys for other school purposes are used for the maintenance and support of public schools or classes.

(i)  School boards authorized to establish public evening schools.--Have the authority to establish public evening schools.

(j)  Cooperate with other agencies in joint projects.--Cooperate with other agencies in joint projects.

(k)  Planning time for teachers.--The board may adopt plans and regulations which will make provisions for teachers to have time for lunch and some planning time when they will not be directly responsible for the children; provided that some adult supervision will be furnished for the students during such periods.

(l)  Comprehensive program of staff development.--Establish a comprehensive program of staff development.

(m)  Exceptional students.--Provide for an appropriate program of special instruction, facilities, and services for exceptional students as prescribed by the state board as acceptable, including provisions that:

1.  The school board provide the necessary professional services for diagnosis and evaluation of exceptional students.

2.  The school board provide the special instruction, classes, and services, either within the district school system, in cooperation with other district school systems, or through contractual arrangements with approved nonpublic schools or community facilities which meet standards established by the commissioner.

3.  The school board annually provide information describing the Florida School for the Deaf and the Blind and all other programs and methods of instruction available to the parent or guardian of a sensory-impaired student.

4.  The school board, once every 3 years, submit to the department its proposed procedures for the provision of special instruction and services for exceptional students.

5.  No student be given special instruction or services as an exceptional student until after he or she has been properly evaluated, classified, and placed in the manner prescribed by rules of the commissioner. The parent or guardian of an exceptional student evaluated and placed or denied placement in a program of special education shall be notified of each such evaluation and placement or denial. Such notice shall contain a statement informing the parent or guardian that he or she is entitled to a due process hearing on the identification, evaluation, and placement, or lack thereof. Such hearings shall be exempt from the provisions of ss. 120.569, 120.57, and 286.011, and any records created as a result of such hearings shall be confidential and exempt from the provisions of s. 119.07(1), to the extent that the commissioner adopts rules establishing other procedures. The hearing must be conducted by an administrative law judge from the Division of Administrative Hearings of the Department of Management Services. The decision of the administrative law judge shall be final, except that any party aggrieved by the finding and decision rendered by the administrative law judge shall have the right to bring a civil action in the circuit court. In such an action, the court shall receive the records of the administrative hearing and shall hear additional evidence at the request of either party. In the alternative, any party aggrieved by the finding and decision rendered by the administrative law judge shall have the right to request an impartial review of the administrative law judge's order by the district court of appeal as provided by s. 120.68. Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, during the pendency of any proceeding conducted pursuant to this section, unless the district school board and the parents or guardian otherwise agree, the child shall remain in his or her then-current educational assignment or, if applying for initial admission to a public school, shall be assigned, with the consent of the parents or guardian, in the public school program until all such proceedings have been completed.

6.  In providing for the education of exceptional students, the superintendent, principals, and teachers shall utilize the regular school facilities and adapt them to the needs of exceptional students to the maximum extent appropriate. Segregation of exceptional students shall occur only if the nature or severity of the exceptionality is such that education in regular classes with the use of supplementary aids and services cannot be achieved satisfactorily.

(n)  Alternative education programs for students in residential care facilities.--Provide educational programs according to rules of the state board to students who reside in residential care facilities operated by the Department of Children and Family Services.

1.  The district school board shall not be charged any rent, maintenance, utilities, or overhead on such facilities. Maintenance, repairs, and remodeling of existing facilities shall be provided by the Department of Children and Family Services.

2.  If additional facilities are required, the district school board and the Department of Children and Family Services shall agree on the appropriate site based on the instructional needs of the students. When the most appropriate site for instruction is on district school board property, a special capital outlay request shall be made by the commissioner in accordance with s. 235.41. When the most appropriate site is on state property, state capital outlay funds shall be requested by the Department of Children and Family Services as provided by s. 216.043 and shall be submitted as specified by s. 216.023. Any instructional facility to be built on state property shall have educational specifications jointly developed by the school district and the Department of Children and Family Services and approved by the Department of Education. The size of space and occupant design capacity criteria as provided by state board rules shall be used for remodeling or new construction whether facilities are provided on state property or district school board property. The planning of such additional facilities shall incorporate current Department of Children and Family Services deinstitutionalization plans.

3.  The school board shall have full and complete authority in the matter of the assignment and placement of such students in educational programs. The parent or guardian of exceptional students shall have the due process rights provided for in subparagraph (m)5.

4.  The school board shall have a written agreement with the Department of Children and Family Services outlining the respective duties and responsibilities of each party.

Notwithstanding the provisions herein, the educational program at the Marianna Sunland Center in Jackson County shall be operated by the Department of Education, either directly or through grants or contractual agreements with other public or duly accredited educational agencies approved by the Department of Education.

(o)  Educational services in detention facilities.--Minors who have not graduated from high school and eligible students with disabilities under the age of 22 who have not graduated with a standard diploma or its equivalent who are detained in a county or municipal detention facility as defined in s. 951.23 shall be offered educational services by the local school district in which the facility is located. These educational services shall be based upon the estimated length of time the youth will be in the facility and the youth's current level of functioning. School district superintendents or their designees shall be notified by the county sheriff or chief correctional officer, or his or her designee, upon the assignment of a youth under the age of 21 to the facility. A cooperative agreement with the local school district and applicable law enforcement units shall be developed to address the notification requirement and the provision of educational services to these youth.

(5)  PERSONNEL.--Designate positions to be filled, prescribe qualifications for those positions, and provide for the appointment, compensation, promotion, suspension, and dismissal of employees as follows, subject to the requirements of chapter 231:

(a)  Positions, qualifications, and appointments.--Act upon written recommendations submitted by the superintendent of schools for positions to be filled and for minimum qualifications for personnel for the various positions and act upon written nominations of persons to fill such positions. The superintendent of schools' recommendations for filling instructional positions at the school level must consider nominations received from school principals of the respective schools. Before transferring a teacher who holds a professional teaching certificate from one school to another, the superintendent shall consult with the principal of the receiving school and allow the principal to review the teacher's records and interview the teacher. If, in the judgment of the principal, students would not benefit from the placement, an alternative placement may be sought. The district school board may reject for good cause any employee nominated. If the third nomination by the superintendent of schools for any position is rejected for good cause, if the superintendent of schools fails to submit a nomination for initial employment within a reasonable time as prescribed by the district school board, or if the superintendent of schools fails to submit a nomination for reemployment within the time prescribed by law, the district school board may proceed on its own motion to fill such position. The district school board's decision to reject a person's nomination does not give that person a right of action to sue over the rejection and may not be used as a cause of action by the nominated employee.

(b)  Action on nominations.--Act not later than 3 weeks after the end of the regular legislative session on the nominations by the superintendent of supervisors, principals, and members of the instructional staff.

(c)  Compensation and salary schedules.--Adopt a salary schedule or salary schedules designed to furnish incentives for improvement in training and for continued efficient service to be used as a basis for paying all school employees and fix and authorize the compensation of school employees on the basis thereof. A district school board, in determining the salary schedule for instructional personnel, must base a portion of each employee's compensation on performance demonstrated under s. 231.29, must consider the prior teaching experience of a person who has been designated state teacher of the year by any state in the United States, and must consider prior professional experience in the field of education gained in positions in addition to district level instructional and administrative positions. In developing the salary schedule, the district school board shall seek input from parents, teachers, and representatives of the business community. By June 30, 2002, or beginning with the full implementation of an annual assessment of learning gains, whichever occurs later, the adopted district school board budget must include a reserve to fully fund an additional 5 percent supplement for school administrators and instructional personnel. The district's performance-pay policy is subject to negotiation as provided in chapter 447; however, the adopted salary schedule must allow school administrators and instructional personnel who demonstrate outstanding performance, as measured under s. 231.29, to earn a 5 percent supplement in addition to their individual, negotiated salary. The supplements will be funded from the reserve funds adopted in the salary schedule. The Commissioner of Education shall determine whether the district school board's adopted salary schedule complies with the requirement for performance-based pay. If the district school board fails to comply by the required date, the commissioner shall withhold disbursements from the Educational Enhancement Trust Fund to the district until compliance is verified.

(d)  Contracts and terms of service.--Provide written contracts for all regular members of the instructional staff.

(e)  Transfer and promotion.--Act on recommendations of the superintendent regarding transfer and promotion of any employee.

(f)  Suspension and dismissal and return to annual contract status.--Suspend, dismiss, or return to annual contract members of the instructional staff and other school employees; however, no administrative assistant, supervisor, principal, teacher, or other member of the instructional staff may be discharged, removed, or returned to annual contract except as provided in chapter 231.

(g)  Awards and incentives.--Provide for recognition of district employees, students, school volunteers, and advisory committee members who have contributed outstanding and meritorious service in their fields or service areas. After considering recommendations of the superintendent, the board shall adopt rules establishing and regulating the meritorious service awards necessary for the efficient operation of the program. An award or incentive granted under this paragraph may not be considered in determining the salary schedules required by paragraph (c). Monetary awards shall be limited to persons who propose procedures or ideas adopted by the board which will result in eliminating or reducing school board expenditures or improving district or school center operations. Nonmonetary awards shall include, but are not limited to, certificates, plaques, medals, ribbons, and photographs. The school board may expend funds for such recognition and awards. No award granted under this paragraph shall exceed $2,000 or 10 percent of the first year's gross savings, whichever is greater.

(6)  CHILD WELFARE.--Provide for the proper accounting for all children of school age, for the attendance and control of pupils at school, and for proper attention to health, safety, and other matters relating to the welfare of children in the following fields, as prescribed in chapter 232.

(a)  Admission, classification, promotion, and graduation of pupils.--Adopt rules and regulations for admitting, classifying, promoting, and graduating pupils to or from the various schools of the district.

(b)  Enforcement of attendance laws.--Provide for the enforcement of all laws and regulations relating to the attendance of pupils at school.

(c)  Control of pupils.--

1.  Adopt rules and regulations for the control, discipline, in-school suspension, suspension, and expulsion of pupils and decide all cases recommended for expulsion. Suspension hearings are exempted from the provisions of chapter 120. Expulsion hearings shall be governed by ss. 120.569 and 120.57(2) and are exempt from s. 286.011. However, the pupil's parent or legal guardian must be given notice of the provisions of s. 286.011 and may elect to have the hearing held in compliance with that section. The school board shall have the authority to prohibit the use of corporal punishment, provided that the school board adopts or has adopted a written program of alternative control or discipline.

2.  Have the authority as the school board of a receiving school district to honor the final order of expulsion or dismissal of a student by any in-state or out-of-state public school board or private school, or developmental research school, for an act which would have been grounds for expulsion according to the receiving school district's code of student conduct, in accordance with the following procedures:

a.  A final order of expulsion shall be recorded in the records of the receiving school district.

b.  The expelled student applying for admission to the receiving school district shall be advised of the final order of expulsion.

c.  The superintendent of schools of the receiving school district may recommend to the school board that the final order of expulsion be waived and the student be admitted to the school district, or that the final order of expulsion be honored and the student not be admitted to the school district. If the student is admitted by the school board, with or without the recommendation of the superintendent, the student may be placed in an appropriate educational program at the direction of the school board.

(d)  Code of student conduct.--Adopt a code of student conduct for elementary schools and a code of student conduct for secondary schools and distribute the appropriate code to all teachers, school personnel, students, and parents or guardians, at the beginning of every school year. Each code shall be organized and written in language that is understandable to students and parents and shall be discussed at the beginning of every school year in student classes, school advisory council meetings, and parent and teacher association meetings. Each code shall be based on the rules governing student conduct and discipline adopted by the district school board and shall be made available in the student handbook or similar publication. Each code shall include, but not be limited to:

1.  Consistent policies and specific grounds for disciplinary action, including in-school suspension, out-of-school suspension, expulsion, and any disciplinary action that may be imposed for the possession or use of alcohol on school property or while attending a school function or for the illegal use, sale, or possession of controlled substances as defined in chapter 893.

2.  Procedures to be followed for acts requiring discipline, including corporal punishment.

3.  An explanation of the responsibilities and rights of students with regard to attendance, respect for persons and property, knowledge and observation of rules of conduct, the right to learn, free speech and student publications, assembly, privacy, and participation in school programs and activities.

4.  Notice that illegal use, possession, or sale of controlled substances, as defined in chapter 893, or possession of electronic telephone pagers, by any student while such student is upon school property or in attendance at a school function is grounds for disciplinary action by the school and may also result in criminal penalties being imposed.

5.  Notice that the possession of a firearm, a knife, or a weapon by any student while the student is on school property or in attendance at a school function is grounds for disciplinary action and may also result in criminal prosecution.

6.  Notice that violence against any school district personnel by a student is grounds for in-school suspension, out-of-school suspension, expulsion, or imposition of other disciplinary action by the school and may also result in criminal penalties being imposed.

7.  Notice that violation of district school board transportation policies, including disruptive behavior on a school bus or at a school bus stop, by a student is grounds for suspension of the student's privilege of riding on a school bus and may be grounds for disciplinary action by the school and may also result in criminal penalties being imposed.

8.  Notice that violation of the district school board's sexual harassment policy by a student is grounds for in-school suspension, out-of-school suspension, expulsion, or imposition of other disciplinary action by the school and may also result in criminal penalties being imposed.

9.  Policies to be followed for the assignment of violent or disruptive students to an alternative educational program.

10.  Notice that any student who is determined to have brought a firearm or weapon, as defined in chapter 790, to school, to any school function, or onto any school-sponsored transportation will be expelled, with or without continuing educational services, from the student's regular school for a period of not less than 1 full year and referred for criminal prosecution. District school boards may assign the student to a disciplinary program or second chance school for the purpose of continuing educational services during the period of expulsion. Superintendents may consider the 1-year expulsion requirement on a case-by-case basis and request the district school board to modify the requirement by assigning the student to a disciplinary program or second chance school if it is determined to be in the best interest of the student and the school system.

11.  Notice that any student who is determined to have made a threat or false report, as defined by ss. 790.162 and 790.163, respectively, involving school or school personnel's property, school transportation, or a school-sponsored activity will be expelled, with or without continuing educational services, from the student's regular school for a period of not less than 1 full year and referred for criminal prosecution. District school boards may assign the student to a disciplinary program or second chance school for the purpose of continuing educational services during the period of expulsion. Superintendents of schools may consider the 1-year expulsion requirement on a case-by-case basis and request the district school board to modify the requirement by assigning the student to a disciplinary program or second chance school if it is determined to be in the best interest of the student and the school system.

(e)  Student crime watch program.--By resolution of the district school board, implement a student crime watch program to promote responsibility among students and to assist in the control of criminal behavior within the schools.

(f)  Emergency drills; emergency procedures.--

1.  The district school board shall formulate and prescribe policies and procedures for emergency drills and for actual emergencies, including, but not limited to, fires, natural disasters, and bomb threats, for all the public schools of the district which comprise grades K-12. District policies shall include commonly used alarm system responses for specific types of emergencies and verification by each school that drills have been provided as required by law and fire protection codes.

2.  The district school board shall establish model emergency management and emergency preparedness procedures for the following life-threatening emergencies:

a.  Weapon-use and hostage situations.

b.  Hazardous materials or toxic chemical spills.

c.  Weather emergencies, including hurricanes, tornadoes, and severe storms.

d.  Exposure as a result of a manmade emergency.

(7)  COURSES OF STUDY AND OTHER INSTRUCTIONAL MATERIALS.--Provide adequate instructional materials for all children as follows and in accordance with the requirements of chapter 233. For purposes of this subsection, the term "adequate instructional materials" means a sufficient number of textbooks or sets of materials serving as the basis for instruction for each student in the core courses of mathematics, language arts, social studies, science, reading, and literature, except for instruction for which the school advisory council approves the use of a program that does not include a textbook as a major tool of instruction.

(a)  Courses of study; adoption.--Adopt courses of study for use in the schools of the district.

(b)  Textbooks.--Provide for proper requisitioning, distribution, accounting, storage, care, and use of all instructional materials furnished by the state and furnish such other instructional materials as may be needed. The school board is responsible for assuring that instructional materials used in the district are consistent with the district goals and objectives and the curriculum frameworks approved by the State Board of Education, as well as with the state and district performance standards provided for in ss. 229.565 and 232.2454.

(c)  Other instructional materials.--Provide such other teaching accessories and aids as are needed to carry out the program.

(d)  School library media services; establishment and maintenance.--Establish and maintain school library media centers, or school library media centers open to the public, and, in addition thereto, such traveling or circulating libraries as may be needed for the proper operation of the district school system. Establish and maintain a program of school library media services for all public schools.

(8)  TRANSPORTATION OF PUPILS.--After considering recommendations of the superintendent, make provision for the transportation of pupils to the public schools or school activities they are required or expected to attend; authorize transportation routes arranged efficiently and economically; provide the necessary transportation facilities, and, when authorized under regulations of the state board and if more economical to do so, provide limited subsistence in lieu thereof; and adopt the necessary rules and regulations to ensure safety, economy, and efficiency in the operation of all buses, as prescribed in chapter 234.

(9)  SCHOOL PLANT.--Approve plans for locating, planning, constructing, sanitating, insuring, maintaining, protecting, and condemning school property as prescribed in chapter 235 and as follows:

(a)  School building program.--Approve and adopt a districtwide school building program.

(b)  Sites, buildings, and equipment.--

1.  Select and purchase school sites, playgrounds, and recreational areas located at centers at which schools are to be constructed, of adequate size to meet the needs of projected pupils to be accommodated.

2.  Approve the proposed purchase of any site, playground, or recreational area for which district funds are to be used.

3.  Expand existing sites.

4.  Rent buildings when necessary.

5.  Enter into leases or lease-purchase arrangements, in accordance with the requirements and conditions provided in s. 235.056(2), with private individuals or corporations for the rental of necessary grounds and educational facilities for school purposes or of educational facilities to be erected for school purposes. Current or other funds authorized by law may be used to make payments under a lease-purchase agreement. Notwithstanding any other statutes, if the rental is to be paid from funds received from ad valorem taxation and the agreement is for a period greater than 12 months, an approving referendum must be held. The provisions of such contracts, including building plans, shall be subject to approval by the Department of Education, and no such contract shall be entered into without such approval. As used in this section, "educational facilities" means the buildings and equipment which are built, installed, or established to serve educational purposes and which may lawfully be used. The Commissioner of Education may adopt such rules as are necessary to implement the provisions hereof.

6.  Provide for the proper supervision of construction.

7.  Make or contract for additions, alterations, and repairs on buildings and other school properties.

8.  Ensure that all plans and specifications for buildings provide adequately for the safety and well-being of pupils, as well as for economy of construction.

(c)  Maintenance and upkeep of school plant.--Provide adequately for the proper maintenance and upkeep of school plants, so that children may attend school without sanitary or physical hazards, and provide for the necessary heat, lights, water, power, and other supplies and utilities necessary for the operation of the schools.

(d)  Insurance of school property.--Carry insurance on every school building in all school plants including contents, boilers, and machinery, except buildings of three classrooms or less which are of frame construction and located in a tenth class public protection zone as defined by the Florida Inspection and Rating Bureau, and on all school buses and other property under the control of the school board or title to which is vested in the school board, except as exceptions may be authorized under regulations of the commissioner.

(e)  Condemnation of buildings.--Condemn and prohibit the use for public school purposes of any building which can be shown for sanitary or other reasons to be no longer suitable for such use and, when any building is condemned by any state or other government agency as authorized in chapter 235, see that it is no longer used for school purposes.

(10)  FINANCE.--Take steps to assure children adequate educational facilities through the financial procedure authorized in chapters 236 and 237 and as prescribed below:

(a)  Provide for all schools to operate at least 180 days.--Provide for the operation of all public schools, both elementary and secondary, as free schools for a term of at least 180 days or the equivalent on an hourly basis as specified by regulations of the State Board of Education; determine district school funds necessary in addition to state funds to operate all schools for such minimum term; arrange for the levying of district school taxes necessary to provide the amount needed from district sources.

(b)  Annual budget.--Cause to be prepared, adopt, and have submitted to the Department of Education as required by law and by regulations of the state board, the annual school budget, such budget to be so prepared and executed as to promote the improvement of the district school system.

(c)  Tax levies.--Adopt and spread on its minutes a resolution fixing the district school tax levy, provided for under s. 9, Art. VII of the State Constitution, necessary to carry on the school program adopted for the district for the next ensuing fiscal year as required by law, and fixing the district bond interest and sinking fund tax levy necessary for districts against which bonds are outstanding; adopt and spread on its minutes a resolution suggesting the tax levy provided for in s. 9, Art. VII of the State Constitution, found necessary to carry on the school program adopted for the district for the next ensuing fiscal year.

(d)  School funds.--Require that an accurate account is kept of all funds which should be transmitted to the school board for school purposes at various periods during the year from all sources and, if any funds are not transmitted promptly, take the necessary steps to have such funds made available.

(e)  Borrow money.--Borrow money, as prescribed in ss. 237.141-237.171, when necessary in anticipation of funds reasonably to be expected during the year as shown by the budget.

(f)  Financial records and accounts.--Provide for keeping of accurate records of all financial transactions.

(g)  Approval and payment of accounts.--Implement a system of accounting and budgetary control to ensure that payments do not exceed amounts budgeted, as required by law; make available all records for proper audit by state officials; and have prepared required periodic statements to be filed with the Department of Education as provided by rules of the state board.

(h)  Bonds of employees.--Fix and prescribe the bonds, and pay the premium on all such bonds, of all school employees who are responsible for school funds in order to provide reasonable safeguards for all such funds or property.

(i)  Contracts for materials, supplies, and services.--Contract for materials, supplies, and services needed for the district school system. No contract for supplying these needs shall be made with any member of the school board, with the superintendent, or with any business organization in which any school board member or the superintendent has any financial interest whatsoever.

(j)  Purchasing regulations to be secured from Department of Management Services.--Secure purchasing regulations and amendments and changes thereto from the Department of Management Services and prior to any purchase have reported to it by its staff, and give consideration to the lowest price available to it under such regulations, provided a regulation applicable to the item or items being purchased has been adopted by the department. The department should meet with educational administrators to expand the inventory of standard items for common usage in all schools and higher education institutions.

(k)  Protection against loss.--Provide for adequate protection against any loss or damage to school property or loss resulting from any liability for which the board or its officers, agents, or employees may be responsible under law. In fulfilling this responsibility, the board is authorized and empowered to purchase insurance, to be self-insured, to enter into risk management programs managed by district school boards, school-related associations, or insurance companies, or to have any combination thereof in any area to the extent the board is either authorized or required by law to contract for insurance. Any risk management program entered into pursuant to this subsection shall provide for strict accountability of all funds to the member school boards and an annual audit by an independent certified public accountant of all receipts and disbursements.

(l)  Internal auditor.--The school board may employ an internal auditor to perform ongoing financial verification of the financial records of the school district. The internal auditor shall report directly to the school board or its designee.

(m)  Financial and performance audits.--In addition to the audits required by ss. 11.45 and 218.39, the school board may contract with an independent certified public accountant to conduct a financial or performance audit of its accounts and records retained by it and paid from its public funds.

(11)  RECORDS AND REPORTS.--Provide for the keeping of all necessary records and the making of all needed or required reports, as follows:

(a)  Forms, blanks, and reports.--Require all employees to keep accurately all records and to make promptly in the proper form all reports required by law or by regulations of the state board or of the commissioner.

(b)  Reports to the department.--Require that the superintendent prepare all reports to the Department of Education that may be required by law or regulations of the state board or of the commissioner; see that all such reports are promptly transmitted to the department; withhold the further payment of salary to the superintendent or employee when notified by the department that he or she has failed to file any report within the time or in the manner prescribed; and continue to withhold the salary until the school board is notified by the department that such report has been received and accepted; provided, that when any report has not been received by the date due and after due notice has been given to the school board of that fact, the department, if it deems necessary, may require the report to be prepared by a member of its staff, and the school board shall pay all expenses connected therewith. Any member of the school board who is responsible for the violation of this provision is subject to suspension and removal.

(c)  Reports to parents.--At regular intervals reports shall be made by principals or teachers in public schools to parents or those having parental authority over the children enrolled and in attendance upon their schools, apprising them of the progress being made by the pupils in their studies and giving other needful information.

(12)  COOPERATION WITH OTHER DISTRICT SCHOOL BOARDS.--May establish and participate in educational consortia that are designed to provide joint programs and services to cooperating school districts, consistent with the provisions of s. 4(b), Art. IX of the State Constitution. The Commissioner of Education shall adopt rules providing for the establishment, funding, administration, and operation of such consortia.

(13)  ENFORCEMENT OF LAW AND RULES AND REGULATIONS.--Require that all laws and rules and regulations of the state board, of the commissioner, or of the school board are properly enforced.

(14)  SCHOOL LUNCH PROGRAM.--Assume such responsibilities and exercise such powers and perform such duties as may be assigned to it by law or as may be required by regulations of the commissioner or as in the opinion of the school board are necessary to assure school lunch services, consistent with needs of pupils; effective and efficient operation of the program; and the proper articulation of the school lunch program with other phases of education in the district.

(15)  PUBLIC INFORMATION AND PARENTAL INVOLVEMENT PROGRAM.--

(a)  Adopt procedures whereby the general public can be adequately informed of the educational programs, needs, and objectives of public education within the district.

(b)  Encourage teachers and administrators to keep parents and guardians informed of student progress, student programs, student attendance requirements pursuant to ss. 232.17, 232.19, 414.1251, and 984.151, and availability of resources for academic assistance.

(16)  IMPLEMENT SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT AND ACCOUNTABILITY.--Maintain a system of school improvement and education accountability as provided by statute and State Board of Education rule. This system of school improvement and education accountability shall be consistent with, and implemented through, the district's continuing system of planning and budgeting required by this section and ss. 229.555 and 237.041. This system of school improvement and education accountability shall include, but is not limited to, the following:

(a)  School improvement plans.--Annually approve and require implementation of a new, amended, or continuation school improvement plan for each school in the district, except that a school board may establish a district school improvement plan which includes all schools in the district operating for the purpose of providing educational services to youth in Department of Juvenile Justice programs. Such plan shall be designed to achieve the state education goals and student performance standards pursuant to ss. 229.591(3) and 229.592. Beginning in 1999-2000, each plan shall also address issues relative to budget, training, instructional materials, technology, staffing, student support services, specific school safety and discipline strategies, and other matters of resource allocation, as determined by school board policy, and shall be based on an analysis of student achievement and other school performance data.

(b)  Approval process.--Develop a process for approval of a school improvement plan presented by an individual school and its advisory council. In the event a board does not approve a school improvement plan after exhausting this process, the Department of Education shall be notified of the need for assistance.

(c)  Assistance and intervention.--

1.  Develop a 2-year plan of increasing individualized assistance and intervention for each school in danger of not meeting state standards or making adequate progress, as defined pursuant to statute and State Board of Education rule, toward meeting the goals and standards of its approved school improvement plan.

2.  A school that is identified as being in performance grade category "D" pursuant to s. 229.57 is in danger of failing and must be provided assistance and intervention.

3.  Each district school board shall develop a plan to encourage teachers with demonstrated mastery in improving student performance to remain at or transfer to a school designated as performance grade category "D" or "F" or to an alternative school that serves disruptive or violent youths. If a classroom teacher, as defined by s. 228.041(9)(a), who meets the definition of teaching mastery developed according to the provisions of this paragraph, requests assignment to a school designated as performance grade category "D" or "F" or to an alternative school that serves disruptive or violent youths, the district school board shall make every practical effort to grant the request.

4.  District school boards are encouraged to prioritize the expenditures of funds received from the supplemental academic instruction categorical fund under s. 236.08104 to improve student performance in schools that receive a performance grade category designation of "D" or "F."

(d)  After 2 years.--Notify the Commissioner of Education and the State Board of Education in the event any school does not make adequate progress toward meeting the goals and standards of a school improvement plan by the end of 2 years of failing to make adequate progress and proceed according to guidelines developed pursuant to statute and State Board of Education rule. School districts shall provide intervention and assistance to schools in danger of being designated as performance grade category "F," failing to make adequate progress.

(e)  Public disclosure.--Provide information regarding performance of students and educational programs as required pursuant to ss. 229.555 and 229.57(5) and implement a system of school reports as required by statute and State Board of Education rule which shall include schools operating for the purpose of providing educational services to youth in Department of Juvenile Justice programs, and for those schools, report on the elements specified in s. 230.23161(21). Annual public disclosure reports shall be in an easy-to-read report card format and shall include the school's student and school performance grade category designation and performance data as specified in state board rule.

(f)  School improvement funds.--Provide funds to schools for developing and implementing school improvement plans. Such funds shall include those funds appropriated for the purpose of school improvement pursuant to s. 24.121(5)(c).

(17)  LOCAL-LEVEL DECISIONMAKING.--

(a)  Adopt policies that clearly encourage and enhance maximum decisionmaking appropriate to the school site. Such policies must include guidelines for schools in the adoption and purchase of district and school site instructional materials and technology, staff training, school advisory council member training, student support services, budgeting, and the allocation of staff resources.

(b)  Adopt waiver process policies to enable all schools to exercise maximum flexibility and notify advisory councils of processes to waive school district and state policies.

(c)  Develop policies for periodically monitoring the membership composition of school advisory councils to ensure compliance with requirements established in s. 229.58.

(d)  Adopt policies that assist in giving greater autonomy, including authority over the allocation of the school's budget, to schools designated as performance grade category "A," making excellent progress, and schools rated as having improved at least two performance grade categories.

(18)  OPPORTUNITY SCHOLARSHIPS.--Adopt policies allowing students attending schools that have been designated as performance grade category "F," failing to make adequate progress, for 2 school years in a 4-year period to attend a higher performing school in the district or an adjoining district or be granted a state opportunity scholarship to a private school, in conformance with s. 229.0537 and state board rule.

(19)  AUTHORITY TO DECLARE AN EMERGENCY.--The school board is authorized to declare an emergency in cases in which one or more schools in the district are failing or are in danger of failing and to negotiate special provisions of its contract with the appropriate bargaining units to free these schools from contract restrictions that limit the school's ability to implement programs and strategies needed to improve student performance.

(20)  SCHOOL-WITHIN-A-SCHOOL.--In order to reduce the anonymity of students in large schools, the district school board shall adopt policies effective for the 2002-2003 school year, and thereafter, to encourage any school that does not meet the definition of a small school, as established by s. 235.2157(2), to subdivide into schools-within-a-school, which shall operate within existing resources. A "school-within-a-school" means an operational program that uses flexible scheduling, team planning, and curricular and instructional innovation to organize groups of students with groups of teachers as smaller units, so as to functionally operate as a smaller school. Examples of this include, but are not limited to:

(a)  An organizational arrangement assigning both students and teachers to smaller units in which the students take some or all of their coursework with their fellow grouped students and from the teachers assigned to the smaller unit. A unit may be grouped together for 1 year or on a vertical, multiyear basis.

(b)  An organizational arrangement similar to that described in paragraph (a) with additional variations in instruction and curriculum. The smaller unit usually seeks to maintain a program different from that of the larger school, or of other smaller units. It may be vertically organized, but is dependent upon the school principal for its existence, budget, and staff.

(c)  A separate and autonomous smaller unit formally authorized by the district school board or superintendent of schools. The smaller unit plans and runs its own program, has its own staff and students, and receives its own separate budget. The smaller unit must negotiate the use of common space with the larger school and defer to the building principal on matters of safety and building operation.

(21)  TEACHER SUPPORT.--District school boards shall address the availability of qualified and experienced support services professionals who are trained in substance abuse or mental health to support teachers who identify students with potential problems. The district school board may address the availability of these qualified and experienced support services professionals through the use of in-school or local private providers.

(22)  ADOPT RULES.--Adopt rules pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 to implement this section.

History.--ss. 423, 914, ch. 19355, 1939; CGL 1940 Supp. 892(86), (296); s. 1, ch. 26775, 1951; s. 1, ch. 29644, ss. 1-6, ch. 29746, s. 2, ch. 29754, s. 38, ch. 29764, 1955; s. 8, ch. 31380, 1956; s. 1, ch. 57-370; ss. 5, 6, ch. 57-249; s. 12, ch. 57-252; s. 24, ch. 57-1; s. 1, ch. 59-138; s. 1, ch. 59-339; s. 3, ch. 61-288; ss. 2-6, ch. 63-376; s. 1, ch. 65-56; ss. 23, 26, 27, 110, ch. 65-239; s. 1, ch. 65-424; s. 1, ch. 67-413; ss. 3, 4, ch. 67-438; ss. 1-3, ch. 68-13; ss. 5, 6, ch. 68-24; s. 1, ch. 69-13; ss. 15, 19, 22, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 1, ch. 69-125; ss. 28, 30, ch. 69-216; s. 1, ch. 69-300; s. 1, ch. 69-374; s. 4, ch. 69-402; s. 1, ch. 70-189; s. 1, ch. 70-194; s. 1, ch. 70-399; s. 1, ch. 70-439; s. 4, ch. 71-164; s. 2, ch. 71-192; s. 2, ch. 71-193; s. 1, ch. 71-272; s. 59, ch. 71-355; s. 57, ch. 71-377; ss. 27-35, ch. 72-221; ss. 7, 8, ch. 73-338; s. 26, ch. 73-345; ss. 17, 18, ch. 74-227; s. 10, ch. 74-356; ss. 4, 26, ch. 75-284; s. 2, ch. 76-236; s. 8, ch. 77-458; s. 1, ch. 78-94; s. 6, ch. 78-405; s. 15, ch. 78-423; s. 1, ch. 79-150; s. 1, ch. 79-151; s. 1, ch. 79-184; s. 1, ch. 79-256; ss. 1, 16, ch. 79-385; s. 1, ch. 80-118; s. 1, ch. 80-240; s. 4, ch. 80-295; s. 7, ch. 80-378; s. 9, ch. 80-414; s. 1, ch. 81-94; s. 1, ch. 81-103; s. 1, ch. 81-197; ss. 14, 50, 52, ch. 81-223; s. 1, ch. 81-247; s. 134, ch. 81-259; s. 1, ch. 82-153; s. 8, ch. 83-324; s. 4, ch. 83-325; s. 1, ch. 84-109; s. 4, ch. 84-255; s. 65, ch. 84-336; s. 1, ch. 84-349; ss. 26, 27, ch. 85-116; s. 1, ch. 85-135; ss. 1, 4, ch. 86-1; s. 1, ch. 86-77; s. 1, ch. 87-134; s. 1, ch. 87-163; s. 15, ch. 87-243; s. 2, ch. 87-284; s. 29, ch. 87-329; s. 1, ch. 88-27; ss. 1, 4, ch. 88-326; s. 1, ch. 89-166; s. 18, ch. 89-302; s. 1, ch. 90-31; s. 32, ch. 90-288; s. 58, ch. 90-360; ss. 1, 14, ch. 91-105; s. 14, ch. 91-283; s. 1, ch. 92-26; s. 2, ch. 92-130; s. 91, ch. 92-279; s. 55, ch. 92-326; s. 1, ch. 93-144; s. 4, ch. 93-198; s. 136, ch. 94-209; s. 14, ch. 94-292; s. 2, ch. 94-303; s. 1527, ch. 95-147; s. 1, ch. 95-162; s. 66, ch. 95-267; ss. 9, 30, 35, ch. 95-269; s. 2, ch. 96-225; s. 2, ch. 96-246; s. 77, ch. 96-406; s. 46, ch. 96-410; ss. 4, 105, ch. 97-190; s. 1, ch. 97-212; s. 1, ch. 98-153; s. 2, ch. 98-186; s. 4, ch. 98-271; s. 9, ch. 98-279; s. 47, ch. 99-284; s. 14, ch. 99-398; s. 10, ch. 2000-137; s. 4, ch. 2000-235; s. 13, ch. 2000-264; s. 1, ch. 2000-291; s. 3, ch. 2000-301; s. 4, ch. 2001-47; s. 2, ch. 2001-90; s. 3, ch. 2001-149; s. 25, ch. 2001-170; s. 71, ch. 2001-266.

Note.--Paragraph (6)(f) former s. 235.14.

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