senate Bill S721

Directs the commissioner of education to establish an incentive program for school districts wishing to implement programs of foreign language in the elementary scho

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Bill Status


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor
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actions

  • 05 / Jan / 2011
    • REFERRED TO EDUCATION
  • 04 / Jan / 2012
    • REFERRED TO EDUCATION

Summary

Directs the commissioner of education to establish an incentive program for school districts wishing to implement programs of foreign language in the elementary schools; further directs the commissioner of education to establish an incentive program for college students wishing to become foreign language teachers and makes an appropriation therefor.

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Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A6232
Versions:
S721
Legislative Cycle:
2011-2012
Current Committee:
Senate Education
Law Section:
Education Law
Laws Affected:
Add ยง815, Ed L
Versions Introduced in Previous Legislative Cycles:
2009-2010: S1457, A505
2007-2008: A9365

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S721

TITLE OF BILL:
An act
to amend the education law, in relation to directing the
commissioner of education to establish an incentive program for school
districts wishing to implement programs of foreign language in the
elementary schools and directing the commissioner of education to
establish an incentive program for college students wishing to become
foreign language teachers; and making an appropriation therefor

PURPOSE:
This bill would accomplish two purposes. First, a pilot program would
be established in five high needs districts ($200,000 each) to expand
foreign language education programs at the elementary level. In
addition, the bill provides for 100 awards of up to $10,000 each for
students who are working towards certification in foreign languages
education, to cover the costs of tuition and materials for their
education.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Adds a new section 815 to the education law; makes appropriations
thereof.

JUSTIFICATION:
Studies have shown that young children have the best ability to adapt
to new languages, as they are still harnessing the skills of their
main language. As we grow older, even by the time we reach high
school, the language patterns in our brains are much more
established, making it difficult to learn new languages. Coupled with
that, in these times of increasing globalization, it is becoming
imperative that New York's workforce be able to cope with
communications around the world. These two issues together require
that foreign language education start at a much earlier time, so that
all students are able to develop proficiencies in one or more
languages other than English (LOTE), and be better prepared to enter
into the global workforce upon completion of their education. In
addition, expanding these programs will require new teachers.
By offering a tuition incentive to would-be foreign language teachers,
New York can ensure that the necessary workforce infrastructure is
available to enact this new program. By focusing the pilot program on
five high needs districts, this bill ensures additional assistance to
schools that are already in great need.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
2008: Referred to Finance
2009-10: Referred to Education

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:
This bill would appropriate $2,000,000, with $2,000,000 going toward
each incentive program.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
This act shall take effect on the first of September next succeeding
the date on which it shall have become a law.


view bill text
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                   721

                       2011-2012 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                               (PREFILED)

                             January 5, 2011
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sen.  ROBACH -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee on Education

AN ACT to amend the education law, in relation to directing the  commis-
  sioner  of  education  to  establish  an  incentive program for school
  districts wishing to implement programs of  foreign  language  in  the
  elementary  schools  and  directing  the  commissioner of education to
  establish an incentive program for college students wishing to  become
  foreign language teachers; and making an appropriation therefor

  THE  PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section 1. The education law is amended by adding a new section 815 to
read as follows:
  S 815. FOREIGN LANGUAGE IN THE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL PROGRAM. 1.  LEGISLA-
TIVE  INTENT.  THE  STUDENTS OF NEW YORK STATE NEED TO HAVE SKILLS IN AT
LEAST ONE LANGUAGE OTHER THAN ENGLISH (LOTE) AND UNDERSTANDING OF ANOTH-
ER CULTURE IN ORDER TO SUCCESSFULLY CONFRONT THE CHALLENGES OF THE WORLD
OF TODAY AND TOMORROW. THEY WILL HAVE TO COMPETE IN THE GLOBAL  ECONOMY;
WORK  WITH PEOPLE OF DIVERSE CULTURES ABROAD AND AT HOME, AND ENSURE OUR
NATIONAL SECURITY.
  ONE GOAL OF THIS SECTION  IS  TO  PROVIDE  FUNDING  TO  START  FOREIGN
LANGUAGE  IN  THE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL (FLES) PROGRAMS FOR A LIMITED NUMBER
OF SCHOOLS IN HIGH-NEED DISTRICTS.   PARTICIPATION IN  THIS  PROGRAM  IS
VOLUNTARY.  RELATIVELY FEW SCHOOL DISTRICTS OFFER FLES NATION-WIDE, ONLY
SIX PERCENT OF STUDENTS STUDY FOREIGN  LANGUAGE  IN  ELEMENTARY  SCHOOL.
THESE  DISTRICTS  TEND  TO  BE AMONG THE MORE AFFLUENT. BY CHOOSING FIVE
SCHOOLS IN HIGH-NEED  DISTRICTS,  WE  HOPE  TO  DEMONSTRATE  THAT  THOSE
SCHOOLS  WHO  CANNOT OTHERWISE AFFORD TO HAVE FLES PROGRAMS CAN SUCCEED.
CHILDREN OF LOW-INCOME DISTRICTS DESERVE TO HAVE THE SKILLS  TO  SUCCEED
IN THE GLOBAL WORLD AS WELL AS THOSE OF MORE AFFLUENT AREAS.

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD01994-01-1

S. 721                              2

  ACCORDING  TO  RESEARCH  AND THE GUIDELINES OF THE AMERICAN COUNCIL ON
THE TEACHING OF FOREIGN LANGUAGES (ACTFL), STUDENTS WHO BEGIN  STUDY  OF
LOTE  AT AN EARLY AGE AND WHO CONTINUE THAT STUDY FOR A LONG SEQUENCE OF
YEARS HAVE THE BEST CHANCES OF  ATTAINING  INTERMEDIATE  PROFICIENCY  IN
THAT LANGUAGE.
  IT IS HOPED THAT THE SUCCESS OF THESE PROGRAMS, WHICH WILL BE CAREFUL-
LY  MONITORED  BY  THE  NEW  YORK  STATE ASSOCIATION OF FOREIGN LANGUAGE
TEACHERS (NYSAFLT), WILL NOT ONLY ENCOURAGE THE DISTRICTS  TO  FIND  THE
FUNDS  TO CONTINUE OFFERING THE FLES PROGRAMS ONCE FUNDING FROM THE BILL
HAS ENDED, BUT ALSO WILL GENERATE INTEREST IN THE NEIGHBORING  DISTRICTS
WHICH  WILL  INSPIRE  THEM  TO  IMPLEMENT FLES PROGRAMS, THUS CREATING A
GRASSROOTS MOVEMENT IN FAVOR OF FLES.
  THE SECOND GOAL OF THIS SECTION IS TO  PROVIDE  FUNDING  TO  ENCOURAGE
COLLEGE  STUDENTS  WISHING  TO BECOME LOTE TEACHERS.  THERE IS A CURRENT
SEVERE SHORTAGE OF LOTE TEACHERS IN NEW YORK STATE.  THIS  SHORTAGE  CAN
PREVENT SCHOOL DISTRICTS FROM OFFERING A VARIETY OF LANGUAGES AS WELL AS
FROM ADDING CLASSES WITH THE PURPOSE OF INCREASING LOTE STUDY. THE FUND-
ING PROVIDED WOULD COVER THE COST OF TUITION FOR EDUCATION COURSES LEAD-
ING TO CERTIFICATION FOR TEACHING LOTE IN NEW YORK STATE.
  2.  FOREIGN  LANGUAGE  ELEMENTARY SCHOOL (FLES) PILOT PROGRAM. PARTIC-
IPATION IN THIS PROGRAM IS VOLUNTARY.  NOTWITHSTANDING ANY PROVISION  OF
LAW  TO  THE  CONTRARY, PURSUANT TO RULES AND REGULATIONS PROMULGATED BY
THE COMMISSIONER, THE COMMISSIONER SHALL ESTABLISH A  TWO  YEAR  FOREIGN
LANGUAGE  ELEMENTARY  SCHOOL  (FLES)  PILOT  PROGRAM  IN FIVE ELEMENTARY
SCHOOLS LOCATED IN HIGH-NEED DISTRICTS THAT ARE CONSISTENT  WITH  MODELS
PROVIDED  BY  THE ELEMENTARY FOREIGN LANGUAGE EDUCATION COMMITTEE OF THE
NEW YORK STATE ASSOCIATION OF FOREIGN LANGUAGE TEACHERS.
  (A) THE LANGUAGE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL PROGRAM SHALL:
  (1) CONSIST OF AT LEAST THREE TO FIVE SESSIONS PER WEEK;
  (2) BE IN DURATION OF AT LEAST TWENTY MINUTES PER SESSION  FOR  GRADES
KINDERGARTEN  THROUGH  SECOND  AND THIRTY MINUTES IN DURATION FOR GRADES
THREE THROUGH SIX; AND
  (3) ATTEMPT TO UTILIZE FOREIGN LANGUAGE  ELEMENTARY  SCHOOL  CERTIFIED
TEACHERS AND TO REQUIRE ONGOING AND AGE-APPROPRIATE ASSESSMENTS.
  (B)  THE CURRICULUM SHOULD BE CONTENT COORDINATED WITH OVERALL COORDI-
NATION WITH THE SCHOOL DISTRICT'S FOREIGN LANGUAGE PROGRAM.
  (C) FUNDING FOR THIS PROGRAM SHALL BE PROVIDED TO:
  (1) HIRE FOREIGN LANGUAGE ELEMENTARY CERTIFIED TEACHERS;
  (2) PURCHASE INSTRUCTIONAL MATERIALS; AND
  (3) INCORPORATE OTHER FORMS OF SUPPORT TO ENSURE THAT THE  PROGRAM  IS
SUSTAINABLE AND SUCCESSFUL.
  3.  STUDENT  INCENTIVE AWARD FOR CERTIFICATION IN LANGUAGES OTHER THAN
ENGLISH (LOTE) TEACHING. NOTWITHSTANDING ANY PROVISION  OF  LAW  TO  THE
CONTRARY,  PURSUANT  TO REGULATIONS PROMULGATED BY THE COMMISSIONER, THE
COMMISSIONER SHALL ESTABLISH A STUDENT INCENTIVE  AWARD  FOR  ATTRACTING
AND  RETAINING  COLLEGE STUDENTS WISHING TO BECOME TEACHERS OF LANGUAGES
OTHER THAN ENGLISH.
  (A) THESE INCENTIVES SHOULD BE USED TO PAY FOR  TUITION  IN  EDUCATION
COURSES, UNDERGRADUATE OR GRADUATE, LEADING TO CERTIFICATION IN NEW YORK
STATE.
  (B)  A PROVISION OF SUCH TUITION SCHOLARSHIPS WOULD BE A COMMITMENT ON
THE PART OF THE PROSPECTIVE TEACHER TO TEACH FOREIGN  LANGUAGES  IN  NEW
YORK  STATE  FOR A MINIMUM OF THREE YEARS AFTER GRADUATION. SUCH PROGRAM
SHALL INCLUDE AN INCENTIVE AWARD OF TEN  THOUSAND  DOLLARS  PER  STUDENT
UPON  THE  COMPLETION  OF COURSES FULFILLING THE REQUIREMENT FOR CERTIF-

S. 721                              3

ICATION IN LANGUAGES OTHER THAN ENGLISH  (LOTE)  TEACHING  IN  NEW  YORK
STATE.
  S  2.  The sum of two million dollars ($2,000,000), or so much thereof
as may be necessary, is hereby appropriated to the department of  educa-
tion  out of any moneys in the state treasury in the general fund to the
credit of the state purposes account, not  otherwise  appropriated,  and
made  immediately  available,  for  the  purpose  of  carrying  out  the
provisions of this act.  Such moneys shall be payable on the  audit  and
warrant  of  the  comptroller  on  vouchers certified or approved by the
commissioner of education in the manner prescribed by  law.    Such  sum
shall be distributed as follows:
  1. One million dollars ($1,000,000) for the foreign language elementa-
ry  school (FLES) pilot program, or so much thereof as may be necessary,
is hereby appropriated to the department of education from any moneys in
the state treasury in the general  fund  to  the  credit  of  the  state
purposes account not otherwise appropriated for services and expenses of
the  department  of  education  for  the  purposes  of  carrying out the
provisions of this act.
  Five elementary schools will  receive  one  hundred  thousand  dollars
($100,000) per year, for each year of the two year program.
  2. One million dollars ($1,000,000) for student incentives, or so much
thereof as may be necessary, is hereby appropriated to the department of
education  from  any moneys in the state treasury in the general fund to
the credit of the state purposes account not otherwise appropriated  for
services and expenses of the department of education for the purposes of
carrying out the provisions of this act.
  One  hundred individual student incentive awards will be issued at ten
thousand dollars ($10,000) each. Such sum shall be payable on the  audit
and  warrant  of the state comptroller on vouchers certified or approved
by the commissioner of education, or his or her duly  designated  repre-
sentative in the manner provided by law.
  3.  No  expenditure  shall  be  made  from  this appropriation until a
certificate of approval of availability shall have been  issued  by  the
director  of  the budget and filed with the state comptroller and a copy
filed with the chair of the senate finance committee and  the  chair  of
the assembly ways and means committee.
  4.  Such  certificate may be amended from time to time by the director
of the budget and a copy of each such amendment shall be filed with  the
state  comptroller,  the  chair  of the senate finance committee and the
chair of the assembly ways and means committee.
  S 3. This act shall  take  effect  on  the  first  of  September  next
succeeding the date on which it shall have become a law.

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