AB 1316

  • California Assembly Bill
  • 2021-2022 Regular Session
  • Introduced in Assembly Feb 19, 2021
  • Assembly
  • Senate
  • Governor

School accountability: financial and performance audits: charter schools: contracts.

Abstract

(1) Existing law provides for the licensure and regulation of various professions and vocations by boards within the Department of Consumer Affairs. Existing law establishes the California Board of Accountancy, which is within the Department of Consumer Affairs, and requires the board to license and regulate accountants in this state. This bill would require the board to prescribe rules relating to the requirements established in this bill for all auditors of school districts, county offices of education, and charter schools, as described in (6) below. (2) Existing law requires the Controller, in consultation with the Department of Finance and the State Department of Education, to develop a plan to review and report on financial and compliance audits, and with representatives of other entities, to recommend the statements and other information to be included in the audit reports filed with the state by local educational agencies, and to propose the content of an audit guide. This bill would require the Education Audits Appeal Panel to include in the audit guide, Standards and Procedures for Audits of California K–12 Local Educational Agencies, certain requirements on school districts, county offices of education, charter schools, and auditors relating to attendance accounting documentation for independent study, including requiring auditors to analyze enrollment at a charter school classified as a nonclassroom-based charter school each fiscal year, and to report to the State Department of Education any instance where enrollment increases or decreases by more than 5% at the charter school during any month over the prior month. By imposing additional duties on local educational agencies, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program. (3) Existing law, whenever in the Education Code the power to contract is invested in the governing board of a school district or any member thereof, authorizes that power, by a majority vote of the governing board, to be delegated to its district superintendent, or to any persons the district superintendent may designate, or if there is no district superintendent, to any other officer or employee of the district that the governing board may designate, as specified. Existing law similarly authorizes the designation of school district officers or employees to exercise the authority to purchase supplies, materials, apparatus, equipment, and services on behalf of the district. In the event of malfeasance in office, existing law requires the school district officer or employee invested by the governing board with the power to contract to be personally liable for any and all moneys of the school district paid out as a result of the malfeasance. This bill would add to existing law similar provisions relating to charter school governing bodies and charter school officials that may be designated by those governing bodies in these instances. (4) Existing law establishes the State Department of Education, under the administration of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, and assigns to it numerous duties relating to the governance and financing of the public elementary and secondary schools of this state. This bill would establish the Office of Inspector General in the department. The bill would provide for the appointment of the Inspector General by the Governor, subject to confirmation by a vote of the majority of the membership of the Senate. The bill would require the Inspector General to conduct and supervise audits and investigations relating to the programs and operations of the department, to provide leadership and coordination and recommend policies to prevent and detect fraud and abuse in programs and operations of the department, and to provide a means for keeping the Superintendent and the Legislature fully and currently informed about problems and deficiencies relating to the administration of the programs and operations of the department and the necessity for and progress of corrective actions that the Inspector General deems to be appropriate. (5) Existing law, with specified exceptions, authorizes school districts to operate programs of multitrack year-round scheduling at one or more schools within the district. This bill, beginning in the 2022–23 school year, would prohibit a school district, county office of education, or charter school from operating a program of multitrack year-round scheduling unless a multitrack calendar is authorized by the State Board of Education due to impacted facilities, as specified. (6) Existing law requires county superintendents of schools to provide for an audit of all funds under their jurisdiction and control, and requires the governing boards of each local educational agency to either provide for an audit of the books and accounts of the agency or make arrangements with county superintendents of schools to provide for that auditing. This bill, commencing with the 2022–23 fiscal year Guide for Annual Audits of K–12 Local Education Agencies and State Compliance Reporting, would require the Controller to include instructions requiring specified supplemental information and schedules in audit report components for charter school audits. The bill would also require specified training to be provided, pursuant to regulations adopted, on or before January 1, 2023, by the California Board of Accountancy, in consultation with other entities as prescribed, to certified public accountants who audit local educational agencies, including charter schools. The bill would also require the board, in consultation with the prescribed entities, to adopt regulations, on or before January 1, 2023, providing for peer review of auditors, as specified. (7) Existing law establishes a system of financing public elementary and secondary schools in this state. This system includes the apportionment of state funds to local educational agencies based, to a significant degree, on the average daily attendance of pupils as reported to the State Department of Education by those local educational agencies. This bill would require the department to provide a report, including specified data, to the Legislature relating to the possible integration of the California Longitudinal Pupil Achievement Data System and the average daily attendance apportionment data system. The bill would authorize the State Board of Education to adopt regulations as it deems appropriate and consistent with these provisions. The bill would also, upon the enactment of a minimum day requirement for charter schools pursuant to specified provisions of the bill, require the state board to adopt regulations specifying that the record of daily engagement is no longer required of a charter school day of nonclassroom-based independent study attendance. (8) The Charter Schools Act of 1992 authorizes the establishment, operation, and governance of charter schools. Existing law requires a petition to establish a charter school to include reasonably comprehensive descriptions of certain things, including the manner in which annual, independent financial audits shall be conducted, and the manner in which audit exceptions and deficiencies shall be resolved to the satisfaction of the chartering authority. The bill would require, not later than May 1 of each fiscal year, each chartering authority to provide for an audit of all funds of charter schools authorized by that authority, and would expressly require the governing body of each charter school to either provide for an audit of the books and accounts of the charter school or to make arrangements with the chartering authority to provide for that audit, as specified. The bill would require each chartering authority to certify specified data relating to the verification of the reporting of average daily attendance by nonclassroom-based charter schools. The bill would require the state board, in consultation with the Superintendent, to revise regulations to require charter schools to report periodic and annual financial data in the same manner and on the same form prescribed for school districts. The bill would phase in, from the 2023–24 fiscal year to the 2025–26 fiscal year, inclusive, and based on the average daily attendance of the charter school, the requirement that charter schools report this data in the same manner and on the same form prescribed for school districts. The bill would require the state board to appoint an advisory committee on charter schools that would include representatives from school district superintendents, charter schools, teachers, members of the governing boards of school districts, county superintendents of schools, and the Superintendent. The bill would limit the size of the totality of nonclassroom-based charter schools that a school district may authorize based on the average daily attendance of the school district. The bill would establish the Charter Authorizing Support Team program, which would be implemented only upon an appropriation for its purposes in the annual Budget Act or other statute, to be administered by the County Office Fiscal Crisis and Management Assistance Team, as an initiative to expand uniform charter school authorizing and oversight practices. The bill would specify the goals and proposed activities of the program, including the appointment of a 12-member advisory board with designated membership and responsibilities. The bill would require the Legislative Analyst's Office to submit to the Governor and the appropriate education policy and budget committees, on or before December 1, 2026, an evaluation of the program. The bill would require charter schools, in addition to complying with existing requirements relating to minimum minutes of instruction, to adhere to designated minimum schoolday requirements in applicable statutes generally relating to school districts. The bill, pursuant to provisions that would become operative on July 1, 2022, would add charter schools to the scope of numerous statutes relating to the minimum length of schooldays. Existing law authorizes a chartering authority to charge for the actual costs of supervisorial oversight of a charter school (A) not to exceed 1% of the revenue of the charter school, or (B) not to exceed 3% of the revenue of the charter school if the charter school is able to obtain substantially rent-free facilities from the chartering authority. The bill would gradually change the costs a chartering authority can charge such that, on and after July 1, 2023, the chartering authority could charge for the actual costs of supervisorial oversight of a charter school (A) not to exceed 3% of the revenue of the charter school, or (B) not to exceed 2% of the revenue of the charter school if the charter school is able to obtain substantially rent-free facilities from the chartering authority. On and after July 1, 2022, the bill would require charter schools to comply with specified requirements relating to the expenditure of public funds for the payment of vendors, and would require the extent of the charter school's compliance with these requirements to be reviewed and reported as part of the annual, independent financial audit that the charter school is required to submit. The bill would revise and recast provisions of the act relating to the reporting of average daily attendance by charter schools, and would distinguish between the reporting of average daily attendance for classroom-based instruction and the reporting of average daily attendance for nonclassroom-based instruction. To the extent that these additions to the act would impose new duties on local educational agencies, they would constitute a state-mandated local program. The bill would also make various conforming changes to the act. (9) Existing law requires community school and independent study average daily attendance to be claimed by school districts, county superintendents of schools, and charter schools only for pupils who are residents of the county in which the apportionment claim is reported, or who are residents of a county immediately adjacent to the county in which the apportionment claim is reported. This bill would delete the provision allowing community school and independent study average daily attendance to be claimed for residents of a county immediately adjacent to the county in which the apportionment claim is reported. (10) Existing law authorizes the governing boards of school districts and county offices of education to offer independent study to meet the educational needs of pupils when certain requirements are met. Existing law prohibits courses that are required for high school graduation from being offered exclusively through independent study. This bill would recast and revise provisions related to the calculation of average daily attendance for independent study pupils, and extend the scope of those provisions to charter schools. These provisions would become operative on July 1, 2022. (11) Existing law prohibits a school district or county office of education from being eligible to receive apportionments for independent study by pupils unless the school district or county office has adopted written policies, and implemented those policies, in accordance with rules and regulations adopted by the Superintendent, as specified. This bill would extend this prohibition to charter schools, and would add requirements to the independent study policies and procedures. The bill would require that an independent study written agreement, with specified content, be agreed to and signed, under penalty of perjury. This provision would impose a state-mandated local program by imposing new duties on local educational agencies and by creating a new crime. The bill would require the course of study, including specific courses, offered through independent study to be annually certified by a school district, county office of education, or charter school governing board or body resolution, to be of the same rigor and educational quality as an equivalent classroom-based course of study, and to be aligned to relevant local and state content standards. These provisions would become operative on July 1, 2022, and to the extent that they impose new duties on local educational agencies, would constitute a state-mandated local program. (12) This bill would make certain provisions relating to independent study, and rendered duplicative by other provisions added by this bill, inoperative on July 1, 2022, and would repeal these provisions as of January 1, 2023. (13) The Local Agency Public Construction Act regulates, among other things, the letting of contracts by school district governing boards involving an expenditure of more than $50,000 for specified purposes, including the purchase of equipment, materials, or supplies to be furnished, sold, or leased to the district, services other than construction services, and repairs, including maintenance, as defined. This bill would extend to charter schools the provisions of the act that currently apply to school districts. To the extent the bill would impose additional duties on charter schools, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program. (14) The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement. This bill would provide that with regard to certain mandates no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason. With regard to any other mandates, this bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains costs so mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.

Bill Sponsors (5)

Votes


Actions


May 05, 2021

Assembly

Re-referred to Com. on APPR.

  • Referral-Committee
Com. on APPR.

May 04, 2021

Assembly

Read second time and amended.

May 03, 2021

Assembly

From committee: Amend, and do pass as amended and re-refer to Com. on APPR. (Ayes 5. Noes 2.) (April 28).

Apr 15, 2021

Assembly

Re-referred to Com. on ED.

  • Referral-Committee
Com. on ED.

Apr 14, 2021

Assembly

From committee chair, with author's amendments: Amend, and re-refer to Com. on ED. Read second time and amended.

Mar 04, 2021

Assembly

Referred to Com. on ED.

  • Referral-Committee
Com. on ED.

Feb 22, 2021

Assembly

Read first time.

Feb 20, 2021

Assembly

From printer. May be heard in committee March 22.

Feb 19, 2021

Assembly

Introduced. To print.

Bill Text

Bill Text Versions Format
AB1316 HTML
02/19/21 - Introduced PDF
04/14/21 - Amended Assembly PDF
05/04/21 - Amended Assembly PDF

Related Documents

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Sources

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