November 14, 2019 Committee on School Finance/Permanent School Fund Item 1

Proposed Amendment to 19 TAC Chapter 129, Student Attendance, Subchapter B, Student Attendance Accounting, §129.21, Requirements for Student Attendance Accounting for State Funding Purposes
(Second Reading and Final Adoption)

November 15, 2019

COMMITTEE ON SCHOOL FINANCE/PERMANENT SCHOOL FUND: ACTION 
STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION: ACTION

SUMMARY: This item presents for second reading and final adoption proposed amendment to 19 Texas Administrative Code (TAC) Chapter 129, Student Attendance, Subchapter B, Student Attendance Accounting, §129.21, Requirements for Student Attendance Accounting for State Funding Purposes. The proposed amendment would update the rule to allow districts and charter schools flexibility for selecting an official attendance-taking time during the campus's instructional day. No changes are recommended since approved for first reading.

STATUTORY AUTHORITY: Texas Education Code (TEC), §48.004 and §12.106.

TEC, §48.004, requires the commissioner, in accordance with rules adopted by the State Board of Education (SBOE), to require reports necessary to implement and administer the Foundation School Program.

TEC, §12.106, provides for charter schools to receive funding under certain conditions through TEC, Chapter 48. 

The full text of statutory citations can be found in the statutory authority section of this agenda.

EFFECTIVE DATE: The proposed effective date of the proposed amendment is 20 days after filing as adopted with the Texas Register. Under TEC, §7.102(f), the SBOE must approve the rule action at second reading and final adoption by a vote of two-thirds of its members to specify an effective date earlier than the beginning of the 2020-2021 school year. The earlier effective date is necessary to coincide with the adoption of the 2019-2020 Student Attendance Accounting Handbook.

PREVIOUS BOARD ACTION: The SBOE adopted 19 TAC §129.21 effective September 1, 1996. The SBOE last amended 19 TAC §129.21 effective March 29, 2018. The SBOE adopted the review of 19 TAC Chapter 129, Subchapters A and B, at its April 2019 meeting. A discussion item regarding the proposed amendment to 19 TAC §129.21 was included on the agenda for the Committee on School Finance/Permanent School Fund at the June 2019 SBOE meeting. At the September 2019 meeting, the SBOE approved the proposed amendment to 19 TAC §129.21 for first reading and filing authorization.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION AND JUSTIFICATION: Section 129.21 provides the student attendance accounting requirements school districts and open-enrollment charter schools must follow and describes the manner in which student attendance is earned. The rule also provides a list of conditions under which a student who is not actually on campus at the time attendance is taken may be considered in attendance for Foundation School Program funding purposes. 

The proposed amendment to 19 TAC §129.21 is recommended as a result of the review of the rules in 19 TAC Chapter 129, Subchapters A and B, adopted by the SBOE in April 2019. The proposed amendment to §129.21 would change the requirement for the official attendance-taking time from the second or fifth instructional hour to any time selected during the campus's instructional day. This change would provide more flexibility for campuses. 

The attachment to this item reflects the text of the amendment to 19 TAC §129.21 for consideration by the SBOE for second reading and final adoption.

FISCAL IMPACT: No changes have been made to this section since published as proposed.

The Texas Education Agency (TEA) has determined that there are no additional costs to state or local government required to comply with the proposal.

LOCAL EMPLOYMENT IMPACT: No changes have been made to this section since published as proposed.

The proposal has no effect on local economy; therefore, no local employment impact statement is required under Texas Government Code, §2001.022.

SMALL BUSINESS, MICROBUSINESS, AND RURAL COMMUNITY IMPACT: No changes have been made to this section since published as proposed.

The proposal has no direct adverse economic impact for small businesses, microbusinesses, or rural communities; therefore, no regulatory flexibility analysis specified in Texas Government Code, §2006.002, is required.

COST INCREASE TO REGULATED PERSONS: No changes have been made to this section since published as proposed.

The proposal does not impose a cost on regulated persons, another state agency, a special district, or a local government and, therefore, is not subject to Texas Government Code, §2001.0045.

TAKINGS IMPACT ASSESSMENT: No changes have been made to this section since published as proposed.

The proposal does not impose a burden on private real property and, therefore, does not constitute a taking under Texas Government Code, §2007.043.

GOVERNMENT GROWTH IMPACT: No changes have been made to this section since published as proposed.

TEA staff prepared a Government Growth Impact Statement assessment for this proposed rulemaking. The proposed rulemaking would expand an existing regulation by providing clarification of the timeframe during which attendance must be determined.

The proposed rulemaking would not create or eliminate a government program; would not require the creation of new employee positions or elimination of existing employee positions; would not require an increase or decrease in future legislative appropriations to the agency; would not require an increase or decrease in fees paid to the agency; would not create a new regulation; would not limit or repeal an existing regulation; would not increase or decrease the number of individuals subject to its applicability; and would not positively or adversely affect the state's economy.

PUBLIC BENEFIT AND COST TO PERSONS: No changes have been made to this section since published as proposed.

The proposal would provide clarity regarding student attendance accounting procedures. There is no anticipated economic cost to persons who are required to comply with the proposal.

DATA AND REPORTING IMPACT: No changes have been made to this section since published as proposed.

The proposal would have no data and reporting impact.

PRINCIPAL AND CLASSROOM TEACHER PAPERWORK REQUIREMENTS: No changes have been made to this section since published as proposed.

The TEA has determined that the proposal would not require a written report or other paperwork to be completed by a principal or classroom teacher.

PUBLIC COMMENTS: Following the September 2019 SBOE meeting, notice of proposed amendment to 19 TAC §129.21 was filed with the Texas Register, initiating the public comment period. The public comment period on the proposal began October 4, 2019, and ended November 8, 2019. No comments had been received at the time this item was prepared. A summary of any public comments received regarding the proposal will be provided to the SBOE prior to and during the November 2019 meeting. The SBOE will take registered oral and written comments on the proposal at the appropriate committee meeting in November 2019 in accordance with the SBOE board operating policies and procedures.

MOTION TO BE CONSIDERED: The State Board of Education:

Approve for second reading and final adoption proposed amendment to 19 TAC Chapter 129, Student Attendance, Subchapter B, Student Attendance Accounting, §129.21, Requirements for Student Attendance Accounting for State Funding Purposes; and

Make an affirmative finding that immediate adoption of the proposed amendment to 19 TAC Chapter 129, Student Attendance, Subchapter B, Student Attendance Accounting, §129.21, Requirements for Student Attendance Accounting for State Funding Purposes, is necessary and shall have an effective date of 20 days after filing as adopted with the Texas Register. (Per TEC, §7.102(f), a vote of two-thirds of the members of the board is necessary for an earlier effective date.)

Staff Members Responsible:
Leo Lopez, Associate Commissioner, School Finance 
David Marx, Director, Financial Compliance
Yolanda Walker, Manager, Financial Compliance

Attachment:         Text of Proposed Amendment to 19 TAC Chapter 129, Student Attendance, Subchapter B, Student Attendance Accounting, §129.21, Requirements for Student Attendance Accounting for State Funding Purposes