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USBE seeks statutory changes from 2023 Utah Legislature

By Ashtyn Asay - | Aug 5, 2022

Ashtyn Asay, Daily Herald

The Utah State Capitol building, pictured Feb. 18, 2022.

The Utah State Board of Education agreed Thursday to seek six statutory changes from the 2023 Utah Legislature.

First, the USBE will seek a school accountability system redesign, which will amend sections of Utah Code related to recommendations from the Accountability System Redesign Executive Committee. This will be presented to the board in October.

The board is also seeking an amendment to Utah Code Section 53G-7-1202 to allow for exemption requests for School Community Councils, particularly in certain small or special schools that have difficulty meeting requirements for a School Community Council.

“Currently it is difficult for certain small schools, where the school district is the main employer for the area, to recruit parents to the community council who are not also employed by the school,” the meeting summary states. “Districts with special schools also have difficulty due to the transient population.”

Additionally, the USBE has made a Statewide Online Education Program early graduation policy request seeking an amendment to Utah Code Section 53F-4-509, which currently requires students who take on extensive course loads to graduate early.

“The proposed change would allow a student to graduate early or remain until their designated graduation date,” according to the meeting summary.

Furthermore, the board is seeking an allocation increase for the International Baccalaureate program, which would be included in the allocation increase in Utah Code Section 52F-2-408.5.

The USBE is also seeking to amend Utah Code Section 53F-9-304 to allow for the board to distribute any excess funds from the Underage Drinking and Substance Abuse Prevention Program at the end of each fiscal year. This excess funding would be given to districts and charter schools through the prevention block grant during the following fiscal year.

Finally, the USBE is seeking to codify the board’s mission and vision statement in order to become consistent with the April 2021 Office of the Legislative Auditor General performance audit’s recommendations, which would require amendments to Utah Code Sections 53E-2-201, 53E-2-301, and 302.

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