2007 Regular Session
By: Representative Flaggs
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 37-15-39, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REQUIRE AN EXAMINATION THAT MEASURES STUDENTS' ABILITY TO SUCCEED IN ADVANCED PLACEMENT COURSES TO BE MADE AVAILABLE TO ALL SOPHOMORES IN MISSISSIPPI PUBLIC SCHOOLS, AND TO PROVIDE THAT THE LEGISLATURE SHALL PROVIDE FUNDING TO THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION FOR THIS PURPOSE; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 37-15-39, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
37-15-39. (1) The purpose of this section is to ensure that each student has a sufficient education for success after high school and that all students have equal access to a substantive and rigorous curriculum that is designed to challenge their minds and enhance their knowledge skill.
(2) The following words and phrases have the meanings ascribed in this section unless the context clearly requires otherwise:
(a) "Advanced placement course" means any high school level preparatory course for a college advanced placement test that incorporates all topics specified by recognized advanced placement authorities on standards for a given subject area and
is approved by recognized advanced placement authorities.
(b) "Dual enrollment course" means a postsecondary level course offered by a state institution of higher learning or community or junior colleges, which, upon successful completion, qualifies for academic credit in both the postsecondary institution and public high school.
(c) "Pre-advanced placement course" means a middle, junior high or high school level course that specifically prepares students to enroll and participate in an advanced placement course.
(d) "Vertical team" means a group of educators from different grade levels in a given discipline working cooperatively to develop and implement a vertically aligned program aimed at helping students from diverse backgrounds acquire the academic skills necessary for success in the advanced placement program and other challenging course work.
(e) "High concentration of low-income students" means, when used with respect to a public school or school district, a public school or school district that serves a student population with fifty percent (50%) or more being low-income individuals ages five (5) through seventeen (17) years from a low-income family on the basis of: data on children eligible for the free or reduced-price lunches under the National School Lunch Act; data on children in families receiving assistance under Part A of Title IV of the Social Security Act; data on children eligible to receive medical assistance under the Medicaid program under Title XIX of the Social Security Act; or an alternate method of identifying such children which combines or extrapolates that data.
(3) The State Board of Education shall establish clear, specific and challenging training guidelines that require teachers of advanced placement courses and teachers of pre-advanced placement courses to obtain a recognized advanced placement authority endorsed training. A teacher of an advanced placement or pre-advanced placement course, or both, must obtain the appropriate training.
(4) (a) In order to ensure that each student has a sufficient education for success after high school and that all students have equal access to a substantive and rigorous curriculum that is designed to challenge their minds and enhance their knowledge skill, school districts shall offer pre-advanced placement courses to prepare students for advanced placement course work.
(b) Beginning in the 2007-2008 school year, any student in a Mississippi public school who is classified as a sophomore may take, in the student's discretion, an examination that measures the student's ability to succeed in an advanced placement course. The Legislature shall provide sufficient funding to the State Department of Education for this purpose; however, the State Department of Education shall seek federal funding through the Advanced Placement Incentive Grant Program and other available funding for this purpose. * * * Efforts to procure federal funding and any other available nonstate funding must be focused with an intent to carry out advanced placement and pre-advanced placement activities in school districts targeted as serving a high concentration of low-income students.
(c) The State Department of Education must approve all classes designated as pre-advanced placement courses. The department shall develop rules necessary for the implementation of advanced placement courses.
(5) Beginning with the 2007-2008 school year, all school districts must offer at least one (1) advanced placement course in each of the four (4) core areas of math, English, science and social studies, for a total offering of no less than four (4) advanced placement courses. The use of the state's online Advanced Placement Instructional Program is an appropriate alternative for the delivery of advanced placement courses.
Any public high school offering the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program is exempt from the requirements of this subsection. However, the school may participate in teacher training and program funding on the same basis as any high school offering advanced placement courses.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2007.