senate Bill S5856

Signed By Governor
2013-2014 Legislative Session

Relates to authorizing school districts in the town of Canaan in the county of Columbia to use real property located outside of its territorial limits

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Archive: Last Bill Status Via A7592 - Signed by Governor


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

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Actions

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Assembly Actions - Lowercase
Senate Actions - UPPERCASE
Sep 03, 2013 signed chap.337
Aug 30, 2013 delivered to governor
Jun 21, 2013 returned to assembly
passed senate
3rd reading cal.1626
substituted for s5856
Jun 21, 2013 substituted by a7592c
Jun 22, 2013 ordered to third reading cal.1626
Jun 18, 2013 referred to rules

Votes

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S5856 - Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A7592C
Law Section:
Columbia County
Laws Affected:
Add ยง2-a, Chap 486 of 1964

S5856 - Bill Texts

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Relates to authorizing school districts in the town of Canaan in the county of Columbia to use real property located outside of its territorial limits.

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BILL NUMBER:S5856

TITLE OF BILL:
An act
to amend chapter 486 of the laws of 1964, establishing and constituting
as a separate union free school district certain territory in the town
of Canaan in the county of Columbia, and providing for its government,
in relation to authorizing such school district to use real property
located outside of its territorial limits

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:

To establish and allow the Berkshire
Union Free School District, located in the town of Canaan, to operate
educational programs on the site of any real property owned or leased
by the Questar III Boces in the counties of Columbia, Greene and
Rensselaer and to enter into any agreements necessary to carry out.
such authority, for the purpose of providing instruction to students
enrolled in the Berkshire Union Free School District.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:

To amend chapter 486 of the laws of
1964, establishing and constituting as a separate union free school
district certain territory in the town of Canaan in the county of
Columbia, and providing for its government, in relation to
authorizing such school district to use real property located outside
of its territorial limits.

JUSTIFICATION:

In 1964, by Special Act of the New York State
Legislature, Berkshire Union Free School District was organized to
provide public education services to the youth in residence at
Berkshire Farm Center in the town of Canaan, county of Columbia. This
bill is to amend that original act to provide expansion of the
Berkshire Union Free School District to include the catchment area of
Questar III BOCES serving the counties of Columbia, Rensselaer, and
Greene.

The graduation rate for CSE students in NYS is 45% and of those, less
than 5% are considered college and career. ready. The statistics for
poverty and minority students are equally staggering, with
percentages hovering just over 50. Currently the Hudson CSD has a
graduation rate of 62% and is identified as having a
disproportionately high suspension rate for CSE students. The
Catskill CSD has a graduation rate just. over 70%, and no longer can
afford to offer their existing Alternative Learning Program. The 38%
and 30% respectively of Hudson and Catskill students will be the
typical target population for The Bridge. The Bridge will be offered
to all schools in Columbia and Greene Counties.

In addition to serving residents of Berkshire Farm Center, the school
district provides special education services to local students bussed
to
the Canaan campus by their home school. They are Day Program students
at Berkshire as an out-of-district. placement. Each community school
receives high cost aid through the STAC system.

Hudson and Catskill currently have 10 students placed in Berkshire's
Day Program based on their IEP out-of-district placement. These
students are already in each district's respective special education
budgets and each district is reimbursed for those expenses.

By utilizing the existing staff that educate those special needs
students - Berkshire can create a staffing model that can include an
additional 45 non-disabled at-risk youth for this creative
alternative learning program (they will be in smaller classes,
receiving more focused attention). As example - the total cost. of
educating all of these students is $870,000. Because the rate is set
by SED for those special education students at approximately $43,000
a year, the balance needed to provide this high end academic program
for our most under-served student population is $440,000 for 45
students. The building costs will be minimal, as The Galvan
Foundation of Hudson is rehabbing the old Register Star building to
house The Bridge and charging rent at $1 per square foot. To complete
the collaboration, Questar III BOCES will hold the lease on the
property and has engaged the participating districts in a Co-Service,
known as a BOCES COSER, making each district eligible for their BOCES
aid for the following school year.

In addition, each district currently buses the special education Day
Program students from Hudson and Catskill respectively all the way to
Canaan. The savings from a transportation perspective will be
immense, but more importantly - currently emotionally disturbed
students, who have experienced nothing but failure in our current
system is on a bus for 50-70 minutes each way depending on their home
address. By moving these programs to a centrally located site, and by
flipping the model, bringing the education to the students, this
partnership has the potential to be a replicable model. Berkshire has
already had preliminary discussions with the Troy CSD regarding their
high need, at-risk population. By partnering with Questar III, a
centrally located building in Rensselaer County could build a new
bridge.

Berkshire has achieved results, most districts have never realized.
Since 2009, Berkshire has a 100% graduation rate of its CSE students.
Berkshire has attributed its results to having a highly effective
staffing model and application of specific adult actions that are
implemented and monitored in real time through the highly touted
Professional Learning Community model. Berkshire employs
dual-certified teachers, meaning all teachers have special education
certification and certification in a core content area such as math.
By employing highly skilled teachers with dual certifications,

Berkshire can pay for skills. The district and their NYSUT local have
revolutionized the compensation model for public education and
eliminated the traditional step salary schedule - the "guaranteed
raise." By focusing resources where they are most impactful,
Berkshire has created a holistic embedded professional development
model where their teachers work in collaborative teams, creating a
laser like focus on the most critical instructional strategies.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:

New Bill

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:

None to the state.

EFFECTIVE DATE:

This act shall take effect immediately.

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

                                  5856

                       2013-2014 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                              June 18, 2013
                               ___________

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

AN  ACT  to  amend  chapter  486  of  the laws of 1964, establishing and
  constituting as a separate union free school district certain territo-
  ry in the town of Canaan in the county of Columbia, and providing  for
  its government, in relation to authorizing such school district to use
  real property located outside of its territorial limits

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

  Section 1. Chapter 486 of the laws of 1964 establishing and constitut-
ing as a separate union free school district certain  territory  in  the
town  of Canaan in the county of Columbia, and providing for its govern-
ment, is amended by adding a new section 2-a to read as follows:
  S 2-A. NOTWITHSTANDING ANY OTHER  LAW,  RULE,  OR  REGULATION  TO  THE
CONTRARY,  IN ADDITION TO THE POWERS GRANTED BY SECTION ONE OF THIS ACT,
SUBJECT TO THE APPROVAL OF THE NEW YORK STATE EDUCATION  DEPARTMENT  AND
THE  BOARD  OF COOPERATIVE EDUCATIONAL SERVICES FOR THE SOLE SUPERVISORY
DISTRICT OF RENSSELAER, COLUMBIA, AND  GREENE  COUNTIES,  THE  BOARD  OF
EDUCATION  SHALL BE AUTHORIZED TO UTILIZE PROPERTY LOCATED AT 364 WARREN
STREET, HUDSON, NEW YORK 12534, AND TO ENTER INTO ANY AGREEMENTS  NECES-
SARY  TO CARRY OUT SUCH AUTHORITY, FOR THE PURPOSE OF PROVIDING INSTRUC-
TION TO STUDENTS ENROLLED IN THE BERKSHIRE UNION FREE SCHOOL DISTRICT.
  S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.



 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD10867-10-3

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