Since their initial release in 1994, school officials have looked to “Dear Colleague Letters” (DCLs) issued by the United States Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) as guidance on the implementation of federal special education and disability laws.
On October 8, 2021, the Governor signed Assembly Bills (AB) 559 and 824 into law. AB 559 provides a new process for identifying schools that county superintendents are required to inspect each year. AB 824 authorizes county boards of education and charter schools to appoint high school pupils as members of their governing boards in response to a student petition.
The California Legislature, believing many school districts were inaccurately reporting the numbers of homeless youth residing within their boundaries across the state, enacted Assembly Bill (AB) 27 and Senate Bill (SB) 400 to improve the identification and enrollment for homeless youth residing within a local educational agency’s (LEA) boundaries.
Three new bills signed by Governor Newsom impact student health including requiring the development of type 1 diabetes information to be made available to parents or guardians, making menstrual products more accessible in public school restrooms, and informing students on the best practices for returning to exercise and physical activity after displaying symptoms of or testing positive for COVID-1
/>Governor Newsom has signed two bills—Assembly Bill (AB) 516 and Senate Bill (SB) 14—that will modify the Education Code to extend its existing list of excused school absences by adding cultural ceremonies or events and expanding illnesses to include mental or behavioral health.
Amid growing concern regarding the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on students’ mental health, legislation was introduced in both the California State Senate and Assembly to provide for increased school-based mental health services.
On October 8, 2021, Governor Newsom signed Assembly Bill (AB) 438 into law. AB 438 modifies the Education Code’s classified layoff statutes by providing classified employees with the same notice and hearing rights afforded to certificated employees.
Governor Newsom signed Senate Bill (SB) 16 on September 30, 2021, expanding the types of police officer records subject to disclosure pursuant to a public records request. This is an expansion of provisions enacted in SB 1421, that went into effect on January 1, 2019.
Governor Newsom signed another education omnibus budget trailer bill on September 23, 2021, Assembly Bill (AB) 167. This legislation further modifies independent study and ADA apportionment requirements for the 2021-2022 school year.