High School Vocational Courses; Linked Learning Pilot Program
(a) Commencing with the 2012-13 school year, the Linked Learning Pilot Program is hereby established for the purpose of implementing districtwide linked learning programs, as defined in subdivision (a) of Section 52372.5, in all participating school districts.
(b) The pilot program shall be administered by the department and shall contain all of the following requirements:
(1) Each participating school district shall incorporate small-sized schools and smaller groupings of pupils within new and existing high schools.
(2) Rigorous linked learning programs shall be implemented that guide pupils through course sequences leading to mastery of standards, high school graduation, and transition to postsecondary education or employment. These programs shall include career technical education courses as defined by the California State Plan for Career Technical Education.
(3) Policies and agreements shall be adopted by participating school districts that promote concurrent enrollment and dual credit with community colleges and universities.
(4) Problem-based instructional methodologies, inquiry learning approaches, and applied learning strategies shall be adopted within all subject areas.
(5) Pupil progress through high school shall be determined by mastery of grade-level standards-based performance benchmarks developed by the participating school district.
(6) Linked learning programs shall be implemented by participating school districts within the district's existing state and local resources.
(7) Participating school districts shall involve local business, labor, parent, and community partners to advise the district on the development, implementation, and ongoing evaluation of the pilot program.
(c) (1) A school district that maintains any of grades 9 to 12, inclusive, may apply to the Superintendent to operate a Linked Learning Pilot Program in accordance with this section. The department shall review these applications and the Superintendent may initially approve no more than 20 applications.
(2) (A) Each applicant school district shall demonstrate its plans to implement the components of a linked learning program, as defined in subdivision (a) of Section 52372.5. Consideration shall be given to factors related to the geographic diversity, type, and size of a school district, and the extent to which a school district's pilot program would receive financial and in-kind support from the business and civic community or funding from government or foundation grants.
(B) If funds become available for the pilot program, the Superintendent shall allocate these funds on a competitive basis to applicant school districts based on the applications submitted pursuant to paragraph (1).
(d) (1) On or before September 30, 2016, the Superintendent shall transmit a report to the Legislature and the Governor that documents an evaluation that includes both of the following:
(A) The costs and merits of the pilot program, including pupil outcome data that includes, but is not limited to, pupil dropout and graduation rates, the number and percentage of participating pupils who meet the requirements and prerequisites for admission to California public institutions of postsecondary education, and workforce outcome data, which may include the number or percentage of pupils who earn a certificate, license, or the equivalent in a designated occupation.
(B) The Superintendent's recommendations regarding the need for additional statutory changes to facilitate the statewide expansion of the Linked Learning Pilot Program.
(2) A report submitted pursuant to this subdivision shall be submitted in compliance with Section 9795 of the Government Code.
(e) The Superintendent may develop regulations necessary to implement the provisions of this section.
(f) The Superintendent shall use existing state and federal resources to implement the provisions of this section.
(g) This section shall become inoperative on July 1, 2017, and, as of January 1, 2018, is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, that becomes operative on or before January 1, 2018, deletes or extends the dates on which it becomes inoperative and is repealed.
(Added by Stats. 2011, Ch. 616, Sec. 3.)