Senate Engrossed House Bill

 

purple star school designation; requirements

 

 

 

 

State of Arizona

House of Representatives

Fifty-sixth Legislature

Second Regular Session

2024

 

 

 

HOUSE BILL 2246

 

 

 

 

An Act

 

amending title 15, chapter 2, article 2, Arizona Revised Statutes, by adding section 15-249.01; relating to the department of education.

 

 

(TEXT OF BILL BEGINS ON NEXT PAGE)

 


Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Arizona:

Section 1. Title 15, chapter 2, article 2, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended by adding section 15-249.01, to read:

START_STATUTE15-249.01. Purple star school program; application; annual report; definitions

A. The purple star school program is established within the department of education to identify schools in this state that provide transition support to military students and their families. The department may adopt policies and procedures to implement this section.

B. Any school in this state that offers instruction to students in kindergarten programs or any combination of grades one through twelve may apply to the department to participate in the purple star school program in a form and manner prescribed by the department.  Notwithstanding section 15-161, a private school in this state may participate in the purple star school program under this section on the same terms and subject to the same requirements as any public school in this state.  The department shall approve an application under this subsection if the school demonstrates that the school does all of the following:

1. Provides professional development training to at least seventy percent of the school's employees, including administrators, related to the unique needs of highly mobile students and military students. training provided pursuant to this paragraph may include only politically neutral instruction and materials. The first training provided pursuant to this paragraph must be provided in person.  Subsequent training, including professional development training provided to new employees and the annual continuing education and training provided to all employees, may be provided electronically.  A school may accept in-kind donations of materials, equipment or services for the training required under this paragraph.

2. Designates an employee to serve as the school's point of contact for the purple star school program.  When selecting the designated point of contact, the school shall consider whether an employee has a military background or other relevant experiences.  The designated point of contact must:

(a) Complete the training required under paragraph 1 of this subsection.

(b) Oversee the peer mentorship program established under paragraph 3 of this subsection and provide information about the program to military students and their families.

(c) Coordinate with the school administrators to ensure that the school satisfies all requirements under this section, including monitoring the percentage of school employees who have received the training required under paragraph 1 of this subsection, organizing the patriotic event required under paragraph 4 of this subsection and collecting any data necessary for the annual report required under subsection D of this section.

(d) Update the website required under paragraph 5 of this subsection at least one time during each school year.

(e) Serve as the school's primary point of contact for military students and their families to assist with transitions into and out of the school.

3. Establishes a peer mentorship program for military students.  The school administrators shall select and train students who are enrolled in the school to serve as student mentors and to support military students who are transitioning into the school.

4. Holds at least one patriotic event during each school year.  A patriotic event held under this paragraph must do both of the following:

(a) recognize the service of members of the military and their families.

(b) Educate attendees about military service in the United States and in this state.

5. Creates and maintains either a website or a dedicated page on the school's website with resources for military students and their families, including:

(a) The contact information for the point of contact designated under paragraph 2 of this subsection.

(b) Information about the peer mentorship program established under paragraph 3 of this subsection and instructions for how to participate in the program.

(c) Information regarding the most recent and, if available, upcoming patriotic event held by the school pursuant to paragraph 4 of this subsection.

(d) Other relevant transition information and resources for military students or other highly mobile students.

C. The department may develop additional criteria for the eligibility determination under subsection B of this section.

D. On or before June 30 of each year, each purple star school shall submit a report to the department of education that contains all of the following for the current school year:

1. The number of military students served by the purple star school.

2. A description of the peer mentorship program established under subsection B, paragraph 3 of this section, including the number of trained student mentors and the number of military students who participated in the program.

3. An attestation that the school updated the website or dedicated webpage required under subsection B, paragraph 5 of this section at least once during the school year.

4. The percentage of school employees who received the professional development training required under subsection B, paragraph 1 of this section and a brief description of the training provided.

5. A description of each patriotic event held by the school during the school year.

6. The contact information for the designated point of contact required under subsection B, paragraph 2 of this section.

E. The department of education shall review the reports submitted pursuant to subsection D of this section to determine whether each purple star school continues to satisfy the eligibility requirements under subsections B and C of this section. If the department determines that a purple star school either failed to submit the report required under subsection D of this section or failed to demonstrate that the school meets the eligibility requirements, the department shall notify the purple star school of the determination and the specific action required by the purple star school to cure the deficiency. If the purple star school fails to submit to the department evidence that the school has cured the deficiency within ninety days after the notice is issued, the department shall notify the school that the school is no longer approved to participate in the program and may not represent itself as a purple star school to the public.

F. For the purposes of this section:

1. "Military" means the army, navy, air force, space force, marine corps, coast guard and national guard and any military reserve unit.

2. "Military student" means an individual who is both:

(a) Enrolled in or eligible for enrollment in a kindergarten program or any of grades one through twelve in this state.

(b) A dependent as defined in section 43-1001 of a veteran or of an active-duty member of the military.

3. "Purple star school" means a school that is approved to participate in the purple star school program under this section.

4. "Veteran" means a person who served in the military and who was discharged or released under conditions other than dishonorable. END_STATUTE