HB2333: P-16 Education Council; makes permanent advisory council within executive branch.

HOUSE BILL NO. 2333
Offered January 14, 2009
Prefiled January 14, 2009
A BILL to amend the Code of Virginia by adding in Chapter 26 of Title 2.2 an article numbered 34, consisting of sections numbered 2.2-2699.3 through 2.2-2699.6, relating to the P-16 Education Council.
Patron-- Amundson

Committee Referral Pending

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia:

1. That the Code of Virginia is amended by adding in Chapter 26 of Title 2.2 an article numbered 34, consisting of sections numbered 2.2-2699.3 through 2.2-2699.6 as follows:

Article 34.
P-16 Education Council.

2.2-2699.3. P-16 Education Council; purpose.

The P-16 Education Council (the Council) is established as an advisory council, within the meaning of 2.2-2100, in the executive branch of state government. The purpose of the Council is to make recommendations on ways to create a seamless transition and ensure effective articulation from preschool to graduate school.

2.2-2699.4. Membership; terms; quorum; meetings.

The Council shall be composed of 21 members. Four members of the House of Delegates shall be appointed by the Speaker of the House of Delegates, in accordance with the principles of proportional representation contained in the Rules of the House of Delegates, and two members of the Senate shall be appointed by the Senate Committee on Rules. The Governor shall appoint eight citizen members who shall include educators, and business and community leaders. The Council shall also include the Secretary of Education, the Superintendent of Public Instruction, the Executive Director of the State Council of Higher Education, the Chancellor of the Virginia Community College System, the President of the Board of Education, the Chairman of the Virginia Community College Board, and the Chairman of the State Council of Higher Education.

Appointments of legislative members and heads of agencies or representatives of organizations shall be for terms consistent with their terms of office. All other appointments of nonlegislative members shall be for terms of three years, except an appointment to fill a vacancy, which shall be for the unexpired term. All members may be reappointed.

The Secretary of Education shall chair the Council and the Council shall elect a vice-chairman from among its membership. A majority of the members shall constitute a quorum. The meetings of the Council shall be held regularly at the call of the chairman or his designee.

2.2-2699.5. Powers and duties of the Council.

The Council shall have the following powers and duties:

1. Identify opportunities to better coordinate the state's education reform efforts from preschool to graduate school.

2. Develop approaches to improve transitions among levels of education, promote student success, and encourage students to continue their education.

3. Consider strategies for data systems that provide information about students at all educational levels.

4. Identify ways to expand access to early learning for children aged three to five, and improve their readiness for kindergarten.

5. Examine approaches to creating a wider range of learning experiences and opportunities for high school students, and increasing college and workforce readiness and success.

6. Make investigations, issue annual reports to the Governor and the General Assembly, and make recommendations relevant to education upon the request of the Governor.

2.2-2699.6. Staffing.

The Department of Education shall provide staff assistance to the Council. Additional assistance as needed shall be provided by the Virginia Community College System, the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia, and the Department of Social Services. All agencies, authorities, and institutions of the Commonwealth shall cooperate and provide such assistance to the Council upon request.

2. That it is the intent of the General Assembly that nonlegislative members currently serving on the Council shall fulfill their terms, and subsequently be replaced according to the provisions of this Act.