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Date of enactment: April 7, 2008
2007 Senate Bill 396 Date of publication*: April 21, 2008
* Section 991.11, Wisconsin Statutes 2005-06 : Effective date of acts. "Every act and every portion of an act enacted by the legislature over the governor's partial veto which does not expressly prescribe the time when it takes effect shall take effect on the day after its date of publication as designated" by the secretary of state [the date of publication may not be more than 10 working days after the date of enactment].
2007 WISCONSIN ACT 222
An Act to renumber 120.21 (1); to renumber and amend 118.40 (3) (c) and 120.21 (2); to amend 118.15 (1) (a), 118.19 (1), 118.40 (4) (b) 1., 118.51 (2), 118.51 (3) (a) 6., 118.51 (3) (b), 118.51 (15) (a), 119.04 (1) and 121.02 (1) (a) 2.; and to create 115.001 (16), 115.28 (53), 118.15 (1) (g), 118.19 (13), 118.40 (2r) (b) 4., 118.40 (8), 118.51 (3) (a) 7., 118.51 (18), 120.21 (3) and 121.83 (4) of the statutes; relating to: virtual charter schools.
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do enact as follows:
222,1 Section 1. 115.001 (16) of the statutes is created to read:
115.001 (16) Virtual charter school. "Virtual charter school" means a charter school under contract with a school board under s. 118.40 in which all or a portion of the instruction is provided through means of the Internet, and the pupils enrolled in and instructional staff employed by the school are geographically remote from each other.
222,2 Section 2. 115.28 (53) of the statutes is created to read:
115.28 (53) Online courses. Make online courses available for a reasonable fee, through a statewide web academy, to school districts, cooperative educational service agencies, and charter schools and private schools located in this state.
222,3 Section 3. 118.15 (1) (a) of the statutes is amended to read:
118.15 (1) (a) Except as provided under pars. (b) to (d) and (g) and sub. (4), unless the child is excused under sub. (3) or has graduated from high school, any person having under control a child who is between the ages of 6 and 18 years shall cause the child to attend school regularly during the full period and hours, religious holidays excepted, that the public or private school in which the child should be enrolled is in session until the end of the school term, quarter or semester of the school year in which the child becomes 18 years of age.
222,4 Section 4. 118.15 (1) (g) of the statutes is created to read:
118.15 (1) (g) Paragraph (a) does not apply to a person having under control a child who is enrolled in a virtual charter school.
222,5 Section 5. 118.19 (1) of the statutes is amended to read:
118.19 (1) Any Except as provided in s. 118.40 (8) (b) 2., any person seeking to teach in a public school, including a charter school, or in a school or institution operated by a county or the state shall first procure a license or permit from the department.
222,6 Section 6. 118.19 (13) of the statutes is created to read:
118.19 (13) Beginning July 1, 2010, no person may teach an online course in a public school, including a charter school, unless he or she has completed at least 30 hours of professional development designed to prepare a teacher for online teaching.
222,7 Section 7. 118.40 (2r) (b) 4. of the statutes is created to read:
118.40 (2r) (b) 4. No chartering or contracting entity under subd. 1. may establish or enter into a contract for the establishment of a virtual charter school.
222,8 Section 8. 118.40 (3) (c) of the statutes is renumbered 118.40 (3) (c) 1. and amended to read:
118.40 (3) (c) 1. A school board may not enter into a contract for the establishment of a charter school located outside the school district, except that if 2 or more school boards enter into an agreement under s. 66.0301 to establish a charter school, the charter school shall be located within one of the school districts, and if one or more school boards enter into an agreement with the board of control of a cooperative educational service agency to establish a charter school, the charter school shall be located within the boundaries of the cooperative educational service agency. This subdivision does not apply to the establishment of a virtual charter school.
2. A school board may not enter into a contract that would result in the conversion of a private, sectarian school to a charter school.
222,9 Section 9. 118.40 (4) (b) 1. of the statutes is amended to read:
118.40 (4) (b) 1. Charge tuition, except as otherwise provided in s. 121.83 (4).
222,10 Section 10. 118.40 (8) of the statutes is created to read:
118.40 (8) Virtual charter schools. (a) Location. For the purposes of sub. (7) (a), (am), and (ar), a virtual charter school is considered to be located in the following school district:
1. If a school board contracts with a person to establish the virtual charter school, in the school district governed by that school board.
2. If 2 or more school boards enter into an agreement under s. 66.0301 to establish the virtual charter school, or if one or more school boards enter into an agreement with the board of control of a cooperative educational service agency to establish the virtual charter school, in the school district specified in the agreement.
(b) Licensure. 1. The governing body of a virtual charter school shall assign an appropriately licensed teacher for each online course offered by the virtual charter school. No person holding only a permit to teach exclusively in a charter school may teach in a virtual charter school, and no person holding both a license to teach exclusively in a charter school and a license to teach in other public schools may teach, in a virtual charter school, a subject or at a level that is not authorized by the latter license.
2. If a pupil attends a virtual charter school, any person providing educational services to the pupil in the pupil's home, other than instructional staff of the virtual charter school, is not required to hold a license or permit to teach issued by the department.
(c) Staff duties. In a virtual charter school, an instructional staff member is responsible for all of the following for each pupil the instructional staff member teaches:
1. Improving learning by planned instruction.
2. Diagnosing learning needs.
3. Prescribing content delivery through class activities.
4. Assessing learning.
5. Reporting outcomes to administrators and parents and guardians.
6. Evaluating the effects of instruction.
(d) Required days and hours. A virtual charter school shall do all of the following:
1. Provide educational services to its pupils for at least 150 days each school year.
2. Ensure that its teachers are available to provide direct pupil instruction for at least the applicable number of hours specified in s. 121.02 (1) (f) 2. each school year. No more than 10 hours in any 24-hour period may count toward the requirement under this subdivision.
3. Ensure that its teachers respond to inquiries from pupils and from parents or guardians of pupils by the end of the first school day following the day on which the inquiry is received.
(e) Parent advisory council. The governing body of a virtual charter school shall ensure that a parent advisory council is established for the school and that it meets on a regular basis. The governing body shall determine the selection process for members of the parent advisory council.
(f) Required notices. At the beginning of each school term, the governing body of a virtual charter school shall inform the parent or guardian of each pupil attending the virtual charter school, in writing, the name of, and how to contact, each of the following persons:
1. The members of the school board that contracted for the establishment of the virtual charter school and the administrators of that school district.
2. The members of the virtual charter school's governing body, if different than the persons under subd. 1.
3. The members of the virtual charter school's parent advisory council established under par. (e).
4. The staff of the virtual charter school.
(g) Pupil's failure to participate. 1. Whenever a pupil attending a virtual charter school fails to respond appropriately to a school assignment or directive from instructional staff within 5 school days, the governing body of the virtual charter school shall notify the pupil's parent or guardian.
2. Subject to subd. 2m., the third time in the same semester that a pupil attending a virtual charter school fails to respond appropriately to a school assignment or directive from instructional staff within 5 school days, the governing body of the virtual charter school shall also notify the school board that contracted for the establishment of the virtual charter school, the school board of the pupil's resident school district, and the department. The school board that contracted for the establishment of the virtual charter school may transfer the pupil to his or her resident school district. If the pupil is a resident of the school district that contracted for the establishment of the virtual charter school, the school board may assign the pupil to another school or program within that school district. If the school board transfers or assigns a pupil, it shall notify the pupil's parent or guardian and the department.
2m. If the parent or guardian of a pupil attending a virtual charter school notifies the virtual charter school in writing before a school assignment or directive is given that the pupil will not be available to respond to the assignment or directive during a specified period, the school days during that period do not count for purposes of subd. 2. The virtual charter school shall require the pupil to complete any assignment missed during the period. This subdivision applies to no more than 10 school days in a school year.
3. The parent or guardian of a pupil transferred to the pupil's resident school district under subd. 2. may appeal the transfer to the department within 30 days after receipt of the notice of transfer. The department shall affirm the school board's decision unless the department finds that the decision was arbitrary or unreasonable.
(h) Enrollment limit. 1. Subject to subds. 3. and 4., beginning in the 2009-10 school year, the total number of pupils attending virtual charter schools through the open enrollment program under s. 118.51 in any school year may not exceed 5,250.
2. By the first Friday following the first Monday in April, the governing body of each virtual charter school shall report to the department all of the following:
a. The number of pupils who have initially applied and been accepted to attend the virtual charter school through the open enrollment program under s. 118.51.
b. The number of pupils attending the virtual charter school through the open enrollment program under s. 118.51 in the current school year who are expected to continue attending a virtual charter school through the open enrollment program under s. 118.51 in the succeeding school year.
c. Of the applicants reported under subd. 2. a., those who are siblings of pupils reported under subd. 2. b.
2m. If the department determines that the sum of the pupils reported under subd. 2. a. and b. by all virtual charter schools is no more than the limit under subd. 1., the department shall notify the virtual charter schools that all pupils reported under subd. 2. a. and b. may attend virtual charter schools in the succeeding school year. If the department determines that the sum of the pupils reported under subd. 2. a. and b. by all virtual charter schools is more than the limit under subd. 1., the department shall calculate the sum of pupils reported under subd. 2. b. by all virtual charter schools.
3. If the department determines under subd. 2m. that the sum of the pupils reported under subd. 2. b. by all virtual charter schools is equal to or greater than the limit allowed under subd. 1., the department shall notify the virtual charter schools that all pupils reported under subd. 2. b. and c. may attend virtual charter schools in the succeeding school year notwithstanding the limit under subd. 1., but that no other pupils reported under subd. 2. a. may do so.
4. If the department determines under subd. 2m. that the sum of the pupils reported under subd. 2. b. by all virtual charter schools is less than the limit allowed under subd. 1., the department shall add to the sum the number of pupils reported under subd. 2. c. for all virtual charter schools. If the new sum is equal to or greater than the limit allowed under subd. 1., the department shall notify the virtual charter schools that all pupils reported under subd. 2. b. and c. may attend virtual charter schools in the succeeding school year notwithstanding the limit under subd. 1., but that no other pupils reported under subd. 2. a. may do so, except as provided in subd. 5. If the new sum is less than the limit allowed under subd. 1., the department shall notify the virtual charter schools that all pupils reported by the virtual charter schools under subd. 2. b. and c. may attend virtual charter schools in the succeeding school year. The department shall select pupils for the remaining available spaces on a random basis from the pupils reported by the virtual charter schools under subd. 2. a. and shall notify the virtual charter schools of the selections.
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