Oklahoma School Discipline Laws & Regulations: Alternative placements

Discipline Compendium

Oklahoma School Discipline Laws & Regulations: Alternative placements

Category: Exclusionary Discipline: Suspension, Expulsion, and Alternative Placement
Subcategory: Alternative placements
State: Oklahoma

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LAWS

§24-100.6. Separation of victim and offender.

A. Students who have been victims of certain felony offenses by other students, as well as the siblings of the student victims, have the right to be kept separated from the student offender both at school and during school transportation.

B. Notwithstanding any provision of law prohibiting the disclosure of the identity of a minor, within thirty (30) days of the time of the adjudication or withholding of adjudication of any juvenile offender for any offense subject to the Juvenile Sex Offender Registration Act, either the juvenile bureau in counties which have juvenile bureaus or the Office of Juvenile Affairs in all other counties shall notify the superintendent of the school district in which the juvenile offender is enrolled or intends to enroll of the adjudication and the offense for which the child was adjudicated. Upon receipt of such notice, the school district shall notify the victim and parent or guardian of the victim of their right to request to be separated from the offender at school and during school transportation. If the victim requests to be separated from the offender, the school district shall take appropriate action to effectuate the provisions of subsection C of this section. The decision of the victim shall be final and not reversible.

C. Any offender described in subsection B of this section shall, upon the request of the victim, not attend any school attended by the victim or a sibling of the victim or ride on a school bus on which the victim or a sibling of the victim is riding. The offender shall be permitted by the school district to attend another school within the district in which the offender resides, provided the other school is not attended by the victim or sibling of the victim. If the offender is unable to attend another school in the district in which the offender resides, the offender shall transfer to another school district pursuant to the provisions of the Education Open Transfer Act.

D. The offender or the parents of the offender, if the offender is a juvenile, shall be responsible for arranging and paying for transportation and any other cost associated with or required for the offender to attend another school or that is required as a consequence of the prohibition against attending a school or riding on a school bus on which the victim or a sibling of the victim is attending or riding. However, the offender or the parents of the offender shall not be charged for existing modes of transportation that can be used by the offender at no additional cost to the school district.

§24-101.3. Out-of-school suspensions–Right to appeal.

A. Any student who is guilty of an act described in paragraph 1 of subsection C of this section may be suspended out-of-school in accordance with the provisions of this section. Each school district board of education shall adopt a policy with procedures which provides for out-of-school suspension of students. The policy shall address the term of the out-of-school suspension, provide an appeals process as described in subsection B of this section, and provide that before a student is suspended out-of-school, the school or district administration shall consider and apply, if appropriate, alternative in-school placement options that are not to be considered suspension, such as placement in an alternative school setting, reassignment to another classroom, or in-school detention. The policy shall address education for students subject to the provisions of subsection D of this section and whether participation in extracurricular activities shall be permitted.

§1210.568. Statewide system of alternative education programs rules and regulations.

A.1. Beginning with the first semester of the 1996-1997 school year, the State Board of Education shall implement a statewide system of alternative education programs which shall be phased-in within seven (7) years. The statewide system shall include but not be limited to Alternative Approaches grant programs, funded pursuant to Section 1210.561 of this title, and alternative academies or alternative programs implemented pursuant to this section.

2. Beginning with the first semester of the 2020-2021 school year, the State Board of Education shall implement a statewide system of alternative education. The statewide system shall include alternative education programs implemented pursuant to this section.

B. All school districts of this state serving students in grades seven through twelve shall provide alternative education programs that conform to the requirements of statutes and rules applicable to alternative education. A program shall:

1. Allow class sizes and student/teacher ratios which are conducive to effective learning for at-risk students;

2. Incorporate appropriate structure, curriculum, and interaction and reinforcement strategies designed to provide effective instruction;

3. Include an intake and screening process to determine eligibility of students;

4. Demonstrate that teaching faculty are appropriately certified teachers;

5. Demonstrate that teaching faculty have been selected on the basis of a record of successful work with at-risk students or personal and educational factors that qualify them for work with at-risk students;

6. Reflect appropriate collaborative efforts with state agencies and local agencies serving youth;

7. Provide courses that meet the academic curricula standards adopted by the State Board of Education and additional remedial courses;

8. Offer individualized instruction;

9. State clear and measurable program goals and objectives;

10. Include counseling and social services components;

11. Require a plan leading to graduation be developed for each student in the program which will allow the student to participate in graduation exercises at the sending school or district after meeting the requirements of the school district as specified in the individual graduation plan for that student; provided, the graduation plan required by this paragraph shall not be separate from the plan required by Section 1210.508-4 of this title;

12. Offer life skills instruction;

13. Provide opportunities for hands-on arts education to students, including artist residency programs coordinated with the Oklahoma Arts Council;

14. Provide a proposed annual budget;

15. Be appropriately designed to serve middle school, junior high school and high school students in grades seven through twelve who are most at risk of not completing a high school education for a reason other than that identified in Section 13-101 of this title; and

16. Allow students in the alternative education program, who otherwise meet all of the participation requirements, to participate in vocational programs and extracurricular activities at the sending school or district, including but not limited to athletics, band, and clubs.

C. The alternative education program of a school district shall be operational and serving students by September 1 of each school year.

D.1. Each alternative education program of a school district shall receive funding based on the average daily membership (ADM) of students served by an alternative education program in the prior school year according to the annual statistical report conducted by the State Department of Education. The per-student funding amount shall be based on the funding available for the program each fiscal year.

2. Of the funding available for alternative education programs each fiscal year, the State Department of Education shall designate up to fifteen percent (15%) for districts participating in cooperative agreements for alternative education services, which shall be allocated on a pro rata basis as an incentive to each participating district. The incentive amount received by each district for participating in a cooperative agreement shall not exceed Six Thousand Dollars ($6,000.00) per fiscal year and shall be in addition to the per-student funding amount required by paragraph 1 of this subsection. Any funds remaining after allocations required by this paragraph are made shall be distributed to districts in accordance with paragraph 1 of this subsection.

3. Statewide alternative education funding shall not be used to supplant existing school district resources or to support programs that do not meet all the criteria for the statewide alternative education system.

E. All statewide alternative education funds received and expended for students participating in an alternative education program shall be reported to the State Department of Education by major object codes and by program classifications pursuant to the Oklahoma Cost Accounting System as adopted by the State Board of Education pursuant to Section 5-135 of this title.

F. Elementary school districts, as defined in Section 5-103 of this title, may request a waiver by May 15 of each year from the State Board of Education from the requirements of this section to implement and provide an alternative education program. Any request for a waiver shall be accompanied by an assurance that the school district does not have students in need of alternative education services. If a school district is granted a waiver, no statewide alternative education funding shall be allocated to the district.

G.1. The State Board of Education shall:

a. provide initial and ongoing training of personnel who will educate at-risk populations through alternative education programs,

b. provide technical assistance to school districts to enhance the probability of success of their alternative education programs,

c. evaluate state-funded alternative education programs,

d. report the evaluation results of state-funded alternative education programs, and

e. provide in-depth program analysis and evaluation of state-funded alternative education programs.

2. The State Board of Education may create an evaluation schedule for effective and highly effective programs, requiring them to be evaluated not less than once every three (3) years.

3. The State Board of Education may contract with a technical assistance provider in order to meet the requirements of this subsection.

4. The State Board of Education shall have the authority to suspend funds for an alternative education program that does not meet the requirements of subsection B of this section. Provided, any school district under consideration for suspension of funds may request a hearing before the Board with a review of the evaluation prior to the Board's final determination.

H. All alternative education programs shall be subject to statutes and rules applicable to alternative education, including any exemptions from statutory or regulatory requirements authorized by statutes or rule.

I. An alternative education program may be offered by an individual school district or may be offered jointly by school districts that have formed interlocal cooperative agreements pursuant to Section 5-117b of this title. Any school district submitting a plan for an alternative education program serving fewer than ten students shall enter into a cooperative agreement with another school district to jointly provide the program unless the program has been granted a waiver from this requirement by the State Board of Education. A school district participating in a cooperative agreement shall be required to send its alternative education funding allocation to the cooperative.

J. Any materials or equipment purchased by a school district with revenue received for students participating in an alternative education program shall be used only in or directly for the alternative education program offered by the district or any subsequent alternative education program offered to students enrolled in that district. Such materials and equipment shall be made available exclusively to alternative education students during the hours that the alternative education program is operating; provided, the material or equipment may be used for other purposes when the alternative education program is not operating.

REGULATIONS

210:35-29-2. Definitions.

The following words and terms, when used in this Subchapter, shall have the following meaning, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.

"Alternative Education" means an educational process incorporating appropriate structure, curriculum, interaction, and reinforcement strategies to stimulate learning with students who have not utilized their capacity to do so within traditional educational settings. Alternative education programs must meet all requirements listed at 70 O.S. § 1210.568 and at section 210:35-29-7 of this title.

210:35-29-8. Requirements for alternative education programs.

(a) General requirements. Alternative education is an educational process incorporating appropriate structure, curriculum, interaction, and reinforcement strategies to stimulate learning with students who are at risk of failing to complete their secondary education for reasons which may include academic deficiency, behavioral difficulties, excessive absences, pregnancy or parenting, family issues, substance abuse, financial issues, physical or mental health issues, state custody, juvenile justice involvement, and/or other such factors, not including disability status. An alternative education program must provide the additional services and supports outlined in statute, and not merely an opportunity for credit recovery. To qualify as an approved alternative education program, a school district's alternative school or alternative education program must meet all requirements listed at 70 O.S. § 1210.568, including:

(1) Student-teacher ratios conducive to effective learning for at-risk students;

(2) Appropriate structure, curriculum, interaction, and reinforcement strategies for effective instruction;

(3) An intake and screening process to determine eligibility of students;

(4) Appropriately certified teaching faculty;

(5) Teaching faculty with experiences or personal traits that qualify them for successful work with at-risk students;

(6) Collaboration with state and local agencies;

(7) Courses that meet the curricular standards adopted by the State Board of Education and additional remedial courses;

(8) Individualized instruction;

(9) Clear and measurable program goals and objectives;

(10) Counseling and social service components;

(11) Graduation plan for each student;

(12) Life skills instruction;

(13) Opportunities for arts education;

(14) A proposed annual budget;

(15) An evaluation component that includes an annual written self-evaluation;

(16) Service to students in grades six (6) through twelve (12) who are most at risk of not completing high school for reasons other than disability; and

(17) Opportunities for student participation in vocational programs and extra-curricular activities such as athletics, band, and clubs.

(b) Submission of alternative education plan. Each school district shall submit and certify an Alternative Education Implementation Plan to the State Department of Education by September 15 of each year. This plan shall outline how the district will meet the criteria listed in subsection (a) to serve its at-risk students. The plan must be submitted and certified by school districts providing their own alternative education programs, as well as districts which offer alternative education through interlocal cooperative arrangements, and districts which have no alternative education program and receive no alternative education funding.

(c) Alternative education waiver available for elementary school districts. For an elementary school district, which does not offer high school grades, the State Board of Education is authorized at 70 O.S. § 1210.568(F) to grant a waiver from the statutory requirement to implement and provide an alternative education program. An elementary school district wishing to request such a waiver must submit an application to the State Department of Education Office of Accreditation no later than May 15 prior to the school year for which the waiver is requested. An elementary school district that has not received any alternative education funding pursuant to 70 O.S. § 1210.568 shall be granted this waiver automatically and need not apply, but an elementary district that has received any amount of alternative education funding must apply for the waiver by May 15 prior to the applicable school year in order to be exempt from implementing an alternative education program.

(d) Deregulation not necessary for conforming alternative education programs. A school district need not apply to the State Board of Education for a deregulation in order to implement an alternative education program that meets all requirements listed in this subchapter and at 70 O.S. § 1210.566 through 70 O.S. § 1210.568.

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