Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Excerpts from California Community College Legal Update

Following are quoted excerpts from a January 2012 Legal Update provided by the California Community College General Counsel's office that may be relevant to community college ICT educators. It "focuses on new legislation which was enacted in 2011. Unless otherwise stated, all legislation took effect on January 1, 2012."
"Stand-alone Course Approval (AB 1029)
This bill amended Education Code sections 70901 and 70902 to extend the authority (and related reporting requirements) of local community college governing boards to approve stand-alone credit courses that are not part of an educational program, without first obtaining the approval of the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges. The extension was only for one year, from January 1, 2013, to January 1, 2014.
Curriculum Integration (SB 611)
This bill added section 66205.6 to the Education Code requesting that the Regents of the University of California, subject to availability of funds, establish and maintain the University of California Curriculum Integration Institute (UCCII). One purpose of the UCII is to facilitate statewide collaboration and innovation among secondary level teachers, faculty, and instructors from various disciplines from the University of California, the California State University, the California Community Colleges, private higher education institutions, and statewide career technical education associations. Another purpose is to provide pupils with course content and experience within priority industry sectors among those identified in the California Career Technical Education Model Curriculum Standards as adopted by the State Board of Education. The UCCII would also develop, disseminate, and promote career-oriented, integrated academic and technical education courses that meet course requirements for admission to the University of California and the California State University, and align with high-priority industry sectors among those identified in the California Career Technical Education Model Curriculum Standards as adopted by the state board.
Ethnic Studies Programs (ACR 34)
This resolution formally endorses the invaluable work of California’s ethnic studies programs and their faculty, staff, and students, recognizes the leadership provided by the beneficiaries of those programs, and supports the continuation of ethnic studies programs in California's institutions of higher education.

Common Assessment (AB 743)
This bill added Education Code section 78219 to require the California Community College Board of Governors to establish a common assessment system to be used for the purposes of placement and advisement. The California Community College Chancellor's Office is required to purchase a currently commercially available and centrally delivered system of student assessment to be used as one of multiple measures, as specified in section 78219.
College Promise Partnership Act (SB 650)
This bill added Education Code sections 48810 and 76003 to permit Long Beach Community College District (LBCCD) to admit students who are participants in the College Promise Partnership to any community college under its jurisdiction as a special part-time or full-time student and to permit assigned priority for enrollment and course registration for these pupils provided specified conditions are met. The law sunsets June 30, 2018.
Among other requirements, the LBCCD, if it enters into a partnership, must provide for an independent evaluation of the partnership funded with resources provided by the participating entities, which shall be presented to the CCCCO and the Legislature.
Middle College High Schools (AB 230)
This bill amended Education Code section 76001 to exempt a student attending a middle college high school from the requirement that California Community College governing boards assign a low enrollment priority to concurrent enrollment students if that student is seeking to enroll in a community college course that is required for the student's middle college high school program. Colleges can still choose to assign a low enrollment priority to these students, but are no longer required to.
Appeal Process for CSU Admissions Denial (AB 670)
While this bill does not directly impact community college districts, it could affect community college students who are denied admission to CSU. This bill amended Education Code section 89030.7 to require the trustees to ensure that campuses meet specific requirements with respect to appeal procedures for a denial of admission.
Student Transfer (SB 940)
This bill amended or repealed various sections of the Education Code to correct technical errors and oversights, and made non-controversial and conforming changes to various statutes related to education.
Of particular note to community colleges, the amendments clarify an existing ambiguity in Education Code section 66747 by specifying that a transfer student who has met the transfer degree requirements must be granted priority for the purposes of enrollment planning and admissions in the California State University system as set forth in Education Code section 66202.
Non-resident Students in Student Government (AB 844)
This bill amended section 72023.5 of, and added sections 66016.3 and 66016.4 to, the Education Code, to allow a student who is without lawful immigration status or exempt from paying nonresident tuition under specified provisions of law authorized by AB 540 to serve in student government at the California State University (CSU) or the California Community Colleges (CCC), and receive any grant, scholarship, fee waiver, or reimbursement for expenses incurred connected with that service, to the full extent consistent with federal law. Further, this bill eliminated the requirement that a nonvoting student member of the governing board be a resident of California.
Electronic Transcripts (AB 1056)
This bill added Education Code section 71091 to implement a procedure to facilitate the electronic receipt and transmission of student transcripts by districts. The bill also requires all community college districts, contingent upon the Office of the Chancellor’s receipt of new, one-time state, federal, or philanthropic funding sufficient for this purpose, and as a condition for receiving funding, to implement a process for the receipt and transmission of electronic student transcripts. The bill requires the Chancellor’s Office to determine the requirements and procedures for dispersing those funds to participating community college districts and to report to appropriate legislative committees, a year after funds are dispersed, the community colleges that have adopted electronic transcripts and the remaining community colleges that have yet to adopt the electronic transcript delivery system. The bill allows a community college district that has elected to implement a process for the receipt and transmission of electronic student transcripts to later opt out of the program in any subsequent year.
Priority Enrollment for Foster Youth (AB 194)
This bill added Education Code section 66025.9 to require each campus of the California State University (CSU) and the California Community Colleges (CCC), and to request the University of California (UC), that administer a priority enrollment system, to give priority in enrollment in classes to any foster youth or former foster youth. For purposes of priority enrollment benefits the statute defines "foster youth" to mean any person who is currently in foster care, and "former foster youth" to mean any person who is an emancipated foster youth and who is up to 24 years of age. These provisions sunset on July 1, 2017.
Hiring Preference in State Agencies for Foster Youth (AB 735)
While this bill does not directly apply to community college districts, it could affect community college students seeking student assistant positions with state agencies. This bill added section 18220 et seq. to the Government Code, and amended section 391 of the Welfare and Institutions Code to require state agencies, when hiring for internships and student assistant positions, to give preference to persons who are, or have been, dependent children in foster care. The bill requires the preference to be granted to applicants up to 26 years of age. The bill also requires the county welfare department to provide dependent children with information notifying them that they may be eligible for this preference, as specified.
Student Financial Aid: Cal Grant C Awards (SB 451)
Current law requires the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) to consult with appropriate state and federal agencies in order to determine areas of occupational or technical training in which the Cal Grant C can be awarded and authorizes CSAC to use criteria it deems appropriate to select students to receive grants. CSAC is also required to take into account other state and federal programs available to the applicant. The Cal Grant C may be renewed until the completion of the training, up to a maximum of two calendar years.
This bill amended section 69439 of the Education Code to require CSAC, in collaboration with the EDD, to prioritize Cal Grant C awards to students pursuing training in fields meeting two of the following criteria:
·         High employment need.
·         High employment salary or wage projections.
·         High employment growth.
Private Source Financial Aid for AB 540 Students (AB 130)
Existing law requires that a person, other than a nonimmigrant alien who has (1) attended high school in California for three or more years; (2) graduated from a California high school or attained the equivalent thereof; (3) registered at or attends an accredited institution of higher education in California not earlier than the fall semester or quarter of the 2001–02 academic year; and (4) who, if he or she is an alien without lawful immigration status, has filed a prescribed affidavit (also referred to as AB 540 students); be exempt from paying nonresident tuition at the California Community Colleges and the California State University.
This bill amended Education Code section 68130.7 and added Education Code section 66021.7, to provide that, on and after January 1, 2012, a student attending the California State University, the California Community Colleges, or the University of California, who is exempt from paying nonresident tuition under the law described above would be eligible to receive a scholarship derived from non-state funds received by the segment attended by the student. The intent of this law is to allow AB 540 students to receive private scholarships.
State-administered Financial Aid for AB 540 Students (AB 131)
This bill amended Education Code section 68130.7 and added Education Code section 66021.6, 69508.5, and 76300.5 to expand eligibility for state-administered student financial aid programs to include AB 540 students beginning January 1, 2013. The law requests the University of California (UC) and requires that the California State University (CSU) and the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges (CCC), and the California Student Aid Commission, to establish procedures and forms to enable AB 540 students to be eligible to apply for and participate in all student financial aid administered by these segments.
Further, the law requires the CCCs to waive the student fees of any AB 540 students who would otherwise qualify for such a waiver. However, students who are exempt from paying nonresident tuition under the provisions described above are not eligible for Competitive Cal Grant A and B Awards except where all non AB 540 California students have received the Competitive Cal Grant A and B Award they are eligible for.
Priority Enrollment for Veterans (SB 813)
This bill amended Education Code section 66025.8 to extend the period of time, from two years to five years, that a former member of the Armed Forces of the United States can receive priority registration enrollment at the CSU and the CCC.
This bill also requires reimbursement to local agencies and school districts to be made if the Commission on State Mandates determines that this act contains costs mandated by the state.
Tuition Refund (AB 636)
This bill amended section 824 of the Military and Veterans Code. Colleges may no longer require a student who is required to report for military duty to withdraw from a class by a specified date in order to receive a refund of 100% of tuition and fees the student paid to the institution for the academic term in which the student was required to report for military service, regardless of whether the student was called to military service before the academic term had commenced or after the academic term had commenced.
Residency Status of Veterans (AB 882)
This bill amended sections 68074 and 68075 of the Education Code to grant a member of the Armed Forces or his or her dependent that is a student in California at an institution of higher education when the military member is ordered transferred out of state, the ability to maintain residency status for tuition and fees purposes so long as the student remains continuously enrolled in the institution. This amendment was required to conform to federal law.
Workforce Investment Boards (SB 698)
This bill amends section 14200 of the Unemployment Insurance Code to require the Governor to establish a process by which to identify high performing local workforce investment boards (WIB), and only these WIBs would be eligible to receive state discretionary funds. One of the high performing WIB criteria would be collaboration with community colleges.
This legislation requires action by the Governor. Upon setting the standards, the WIBs are expected to use those standards in determining which WIBs are high performing or not.
Apprenticeship Programs (AB 554)
This bill amends section 14230 of the Unemployment Insurance Code to direct the California Workforce Investment Board (CWIB) and its local boards to develop a policy that establishes collaboration with community colleges to develop preapprenticeship and apprenticeship programs in the geographic area.
This bill requires the CWIB and each local board to ensure that programs and services funded by Work Investment Act (WIA) and directed to apprenticeable occupations, including preapprenticeship training, are conducted to the maximum extent feasible, in coordination with apprenticeship programs approved by Division of Apprenticeship Standards (DAS).
This bill also requires the CWIB and each local board to develop a policy of fostering collaboration between community colleges and approved apprenticeship programs in their respective geographic areas to provide preapprenticeship training, apprenticeship training, and continuing education in apprenticeable occupations through approved apprenticeship programs.
CTE Course Requirements (AB 1330)
This bill amends section 48980 and 51225.3 of the Education Code to give high school students the option of using a career technical education (CTE) course to fulfill the existing high school requirement to take a course in visual or performing arts or foreign language, as specified.
Legal requirements for this bill are set forth at the K-12 level, with no specific provisions called forth to community college districts.

Nondiscrimination and Training, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (AB 620)
Assembly Bill 620 amended various sections of the Education Code to promote the needs of LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) students by adding the attributes of sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression to some of the existing nondiscrimination laws affecting higher educational institutions. AB 620 also requests that UC, CSU, and community college districts establish and post policies on harassment, intimidation, and bullying to be included in the rules of student conduct related to LGBT students.
Districts are given the option and are not required to establish and post policies related to LGBT students under the provisions of this bill.
Reader Privacy Act (SB 602)
The Information Practices Act, Civil Code section 1798 et seq., was amended to protect unauthorized disclosure of private information regarding books and book readers. This bill added section 1798.90 to the Civil Code to provide that a book service provider may not knowingly disclose to any government entity, or be compelled to disclose to a government entity or any private person or entity, a user's personal information related to the use of a book or part of a book, except under specified limited circumstances (e.g., consent or lawful court orders). A book service provider includes book stores and libraries.
This bill also requires book service providers to prepare a report to be made publicly available in an online, searchable format by March 1 of every year, unless exempted. The report must include specified information, including the number of federal and state warrants and orders requesting disclosure of a user's personal information that the provider has received in the previous year. The report must also include this same information for any grand jury subpoenas, civil and administrative subpoenas, and requests for information made with the user's informed consent received by the provider during the prior year.
Further, prior to disclosing personal information pursuant to a court order, the book service provider must provide, in a timely manner, notice to the user about the issuance of the order and the ability to appear and quash the order.
Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)
The U.S. Department of Education has amended the FERPA regulations to clarify the limited circumstances where state education agencies such as the Chancellor’s Office and local educational agencies (LEAs), such as community college districts, may disclose student information to assess the effectiveness of State and Federally-funded education programs – the audit and evaluation exception and the studies exception. (34 CFR §§ 99.31(a)(6), 99.31(a)(3) and 99.35.)
Additionally, the amended regulations permit community college districts to adopt limited directory information policies that allow the disclosure of directory information to specific parties, for specific purposes, or both. It is up to individual community college district to decide whether to adopt limited directory information policies and how to implement them.
Under the amended regulations, a community college district may require a student to wear or present a student ID or badge, even if that student has opted out of allowing disclosure of his or her directory information.
However, it is important to also consult with applicable state and local laws and to consider the best practices for privacy, confidentiality and data security prior to disclosing any personal information as state law can be more restrictive than federal law. (See, e.g., Education Code section 76210 et seq., and Code of Civil Procedure section 1798 et seq.) LEAs’ responsibilities to appropriately protect student personal information extend beyond FERPA.
The text of the final regulations, and detailed explanation of each change, can be found at:

Public Records of Auxiliary Organizations (SB 8)
The California Public Records Act (CPRA) requires state and local agencies to make their records available for public inspection and to make copies available upon request and payment of a fee unless those records are exempt from disclosure.
This bill added sections 72690, 89913, and 92950 to the Education Code to require records maintained by an auxiliary organizations of the CSU, California Community Colleges (CCC), and CCC districts and campus foundations of the UC, be available to the public consistent with the CPRA. In addition to the existing exemptions from disclosure, this bill added several other exemptions related to donation of $2,500 or less.

Brown Act (AB 23)
This bill added section 54952.3 to the Government Code (Brown Act) to require a member of a legislative body or the clerk to announce, prior to holding a meeting simultaneously or in serial order, during a meeting of a legislative body where the members of the legislative body constitute at least a quorum of the legislative body of the other meeting, how much compensation or stipend the members will receive for the second meeting, and any subsequent meeting thereafter meeting the same quorum criteria.
Community College Board Members: Absence from the State (AB 334)
This bill amends section 1064 of the Government Code to provide that existing provisions of law regarding absences from the state for members of a school district governing board are also applicable to members of community college governing boards, and permits school district and community college governing boards to authorize an extended absence for a board member in the case of illness or urgent necessity.
Community college districts should now monitor their board members that leave the state to ensure they are in compliance.
Community College Districts: Trustee Elections (AB 684)
This bill adds sections 72036 and 72036.5 to the Education Code to authorize a community college district to change to a trustee area election system through a waiver process. The bill requires a district to secure a local board resolution supporting the change and approval of the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges. An urgency measure, AB 684 was effective immediately upon signature.
Our office has issued Legal Advisory 11-02 ( discussing how community college districts can apply for the waiver. Please refer to that document for more information.
Redevelopment Agencies (ABX1 26 and ABX1 27)
This bill eliminates redevelopment agencies (RDAs) and directs the resolution of their activities. It amends and adds to multiple sections of the Health and Safety Code and Revenue and Taxation Code.  This bill would not become effective unless the second bill also becomes effective. The second bill, ABX1 27, adds section 34192 to the Health and Safety Code, and creates an alternative voluntary redevelopment program. The requirements of this bill would affect RDAs that elect not to participate in the alternative voluntary redevelopment program.
This bill requires that each successor agency shall have an oversight board composed of seven members, one of whom is to be appointed by the Chancellor of the California Community Colleges. Districts have been notified and advised to submit nominations to the Chancellor’s Office.
Student Fees (ABX1 32)
This bill amends, adds, and repeals multiple sections of the Education Code and delays the implementation of the $10 per unit student fee increase from winter term to the summer term of the 2011-12 academic year. This bill requires college districts, to the extent possible, make every effort to implement reductions in a manner that will minimize the impact on course offerings and programs needed by students to achieve their basic skills, workforce training, or transfer goals.
This legislation reflects the changes to the budget trailer bill that called for trigger reductions that were to be made operative by January 1, 2012. The fee increase is now to take place in the summer 2012 calendar year instead of the winter term.

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