(a) As used in this section and § 10-262i:

Terms Used In Connecticut General Statutes 10-262u

  • Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
  • Fiscal year: The fiscal year is the accounting period for the government. For the federal government, this begins on October 1 and ends on September 30. The fiscal year is designated by the calendar year in which it ends; for example, fiscal year 2006 begins on October 1, 2005 and ends on September 30, 2006.
  • Jurisdiction: (1) The legal authority of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction exists when two courts have simultaneous responsibility for the same case. (2) The geographic area over which the court has authority to decide cases.

(1) “Alliance district” means a school district for a town that (A) is among the towns with the thirty lowest accountability index scores, as calculated by the Department of Education, or (B) was previously designated as an alliance district by the Commissioner of Education for the fiscal years ending June 30, 2013, to June 30, 2017, inclusive.

(2) “Accountability index” has the same meaning as provided in § 10-223e.

(3) “Mastery test data of record” has the same meaning as provided in § 10-262f.

(4) “Educational reform district” means a school district that is in a town that is among the ten lowest accountability index scores when all towns are ranked highest to lowest in accountability index scores.

(b) (1) For the fiscal year ending June 30, 2013, the Commissioner of Education shall designate thirty school districts as alliance districts. Any school district designated as an alliance district shall be so designated for a period of five years. On or before June 30, 2016, the Department of Education shall determine if there are any additional alliance districts.

(2) For the fiscal year ending June 30, 2018, the commissioner shall designate thirty-three school districts as alliance districts. Any school district designated as an alliance district shall be so designated for a period of five years.

(c) (1) (A) For the fiscal year ending June 30, 2013, the Comptroller shall withhold from a town designated as an alliance district any increase in funds received over the amount the town received for the prior fiscal year pursuant to § 10-262h. The Comptroller shall transfer such funds to the Commissioner of Education. (B) For the fiscal years ending June 30, 2014, to June 30, 2016, inclusive, the Comptroller shall withhold from a town designated as an alliance district any increase in funds received over the amount the town received for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2012, pursuant to subsection (a) of § 10-262i. (C) For the fiscal year ending June 30, 2017, the Comptroller shall withhold from a town designated as an alliance district any increase in funds received over the amount the town received for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2012, pursuant to subsection (a) of § 10-262i, minus the aid reduction, as described in subsection (d) of § 10-262i. (D) For the fiscal year ending June 30, 2018, and each fiscal year thereafter, the Comptroller shall withhold from a town designated as an alliance district any increase in funds received over the amount the town received for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2012, pursuant to subsection (a) of § 10-262i. The Comptroller shall transfer such funds to the Commissioner of Education.

(2) Upon receipt of an application pursuant to subsection (d) of this section, the Commissioner of Education may pay such funds to the town designated as an alliance district and such town shall pay all such funds to the local or regional board of education for such town on the condition that such funds shall be expended in accordance with the plan described in subsection (d) of this section, the provisions of subsection (c) of § 10-262i, and any guidelines developed by the State Board of Education for such funds. Such funds shall be used to improve student achievement in such alliance district and to offset any other local education costs approved by the commissioner.

(d) The local or regional board of education for a town designated as an alliance district may apply to the Commissioner of Education, at such time and in such manner as the commissioner prescribes, to receive any increase in funds received over the amount the town received for the prior fiscal year pursuant to subsection (a) of § 10-262i. Applications pursuant to this subsection shall include objectives and performance targets and a plan that are developed, in part, on the strategic use of student academic performance data. Such plan may include, but not be limited to, the following: (1) A tiered system of interventions for the schools under the jurisdiction of such board based on the needs of such schools, (2) ways to strengthen the foundational programs in reading, through the intensive reading instruction program pursuant to § 10-14u, to ensure reading mastery in kindergarten to grade three, inclusive, with a focus on standards and instruction, proper use of data, intervention strategies, current information for teachers, parental engagement, and teacher professional development, (3) additional learning time, including extended school day or school year programming administered by school personnel or external partners, (4) a talent strategy that includes, but is not limited to, teacher and school leader recruitment and assignment, career ladder policies that draw upon guidelines for a model teacher evaluation program adopted by the State Board of Education, pursuant to § 10-151b, and adopted by each local or regional board of education. Such talent strategy may include provisions that demonstrate increased ability to attract, retain, promote and bolster the performance of staff in accordance with performance evaluation findings and, in the case of new personnel, other indicators of effectiveness, (5) training for school leaders and other staff on new teacher evaluation models, (6) provisions for the cooperation and coordination with early childhood education providers to ensure alignment with district expectations for student entry into kindergarten, including funding for an existing local Head Start program, (7) provisions for the cooperation and coordination with other governmental and community programs to ensure that students receive adequate support and wraparound services, including community school models, (8) provisions for implementing and furthering state-wide education standards adopted by the State Board of Education and all activities and initiatives associated with such standards, (9) strategies for attracting and recruiting minority teachers and administrators, (10) provisions for the enhancement of bilingual education programs, pursuant to § 10-17f, or other language acquisition services to English language learners, including, but not limited to, participation in the English language learner pilot program, established pursuant to § 10-17n, (11) entering into the model school district responsibilities agreement, described in § 10-223l, (12) leadership succession plans that provide training and learning opportunities for administrators and are designed to assist in the seamless transition of school and district personnel in and out of leadership positions in the school district and the continuous implementation of plans developed under this subsection, and (13) any additional categories or goals as determined by the commissioner. Such plan shall demonstrate collaboration with key stakeholders, as identified by the commissioner, with the goal of achieving efficiencies and the alignment of intent and practice of current programs with conditional programs identified in this subsection. The commissioner may (A) require changes in any plan submitted by a local or regional board of education before the commissioner approves an application under this subsection, and (B) permit a local or regional board of education, as part of such plan, to use a portion of any funds received under this section for the purposes of paying tuition charged to such board pursuant to subdivision (1) of subsection (k) of § 10-264l or subsection (b) of § 10-264o.

(e) The State Board of Education may develop guidelines and criteria for the administration of such funds under this section.

(f) The commissioner may withhold such funds if the local or regional board of education fails to comply with the provisions of this section. The commissioner may renew such funding if the local or regional board of education provides evidence that the school district of such board is achieving the objectives and performance targets approved by the commissioner stated in the plan submitted under this section.

(g) Any local or regional board of education receiving funding under this section shall submit an annual expenditure report to the commissioner on such form and in such manner as requested by the commissioner. The commissioner shall determine if (1) the local or regional board of education shall repay any funds not expended in accordance with the approved application, or (2) such funding should be reduced in a subsequent fiscal year up to an amount equal to the amount that the commissioner determines is out of compliance with the provisions of this subsection.

(h) Any balance remaining for each local or regional board of education at the end of any fiscal year shall be carried forward for such local or regional board of education for the next fiscal year.