1997 Regular Session
By: Representative Martinson
House Bill 1359
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 37-1-3, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO PROVIDE THAT THE STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION SHALL REQUIRE ALL SCHOOL DISTRICTS IN THE STATE TO PROVIDE KINDERGARTEN CLASSROOM-BASED DIRECT INSTRUCTION IN PHONEMIC AWARENESS FOLLOWED BY SCREENING FOR PHONEMIC AWARENESS OF ALL KINDERGARTEN STUDENTS; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 37-1-3, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
37-1-3. (1) The State Board of Education shall adopt rules and regulations and set standards and policies for the organization, operation, management, planning, budgeting and programs of the State Department of Education.
(a) The board is directed to identify all functions of the department that contribute to or comprise a part of the state system of educational accountability and to establish and maintain within the department the necessary organizational structure, policies and procedures for effectively coordinating such functions. Such policies and procedures shall clearly fix and delineate responsibilities for various aspects of the system and for overall coordination of the total system and its effective management.
(b) The board shall establish and maintain a system-wide plan of performance, policy and directions of public education not otherwise provided for.
(c) The board shall effectively use the personnel and resources of the department to enhance technical assistance to school districts in instruction and management therein.
(d) The board shall establish and maintain a central budget policy.
(e) The board shall establish and maintain within the State Department of Education a central management capacity under the direction of the State Superintendent of Education.
(f) The board with recommendations from the superintendent shall design and maintain a five-year plan and program for educational improvement that shall set forth objectives for system performance and development and be the basis for budget requests and legislative initiatives.
(2) The State Board of Education shall adopt and maintain a curriculum and a course of study to be used in the public schools that is designed to prepare the state's children and youth to be productive, informed, creative citizens, workers and leaders, and it shall regulate all matters arising in the practical administration of the school system not otherwise provided for.
(3) The State Board of Education shall through its actions seek to implement the policies set forth in Section 37-1-2.
(4) The State Board of Education shall require the various school districts of this state to provide kindergarten classroom-based direct instruction in phonemic awareness followed by screening for phonemic awareness of all kindergarten students.
For the purposes of this subsection, phonemic awareness is defined as the ability of a child to hear and comprehend the separate phenomes of words when communicated either orally or in writing.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 1997.