Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of SB3259
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Full Text of SB3259  97th General Assembly




State of Illinois
2011 and 2012


Introduced 2/1/2012, by Sen. Kimberly A. Lightford


105 ILCS 5/3-15.12  from Ch. 122, par. 3-15.12
105 ILCS 5/26-1  from Ch. 122, par. 26-1
105 ILCS 5/26-2  from Ch. 122, par. 26-2
105 ILCS 5/26-14  from Ch. 122, par. 26-14

    Amends the School Code. Increases the compulsory school age from 17 to 18 years of age; makes related changes. Effective July 1, 2012.

LRB097 19781 AMC 65047 b






SB3259LRB097 19781 AMC 65047 b

1    AN ACT concerning education.
2    Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
3represented in the General Assembly:
4    Section 5. The School Code is amended by changing Sections
53-15.12, 26-1, 26-2, and 26-14 as follows:
6    (105 ILCS 5/3-15.12)  (from Ch. 122, par. 3-15.12)
7    Sec. 3-15.12. High school equivalency testing program. The
8regional superintendent of schools shall make available for
9qualified individuals residing within the region a High School
10Equivalency Testing Program. For that purpose the regional
11superintendent alone or with other regional superintendents
12may establish and supervise a testing center or centers to
13administer the secure forms of the high school level Test of
14General Educational Development to qualified persons. Such
15centers shall be under the supervision of the regional
16superintendent in whose region such centers are located,
17subject to the approval of the President of the Illinois
18Community College Board.
19    An individual is eligible to apply to the regional
20superintendent of schools for the region in which he or she
21resides if he or she is: (a) a person who is 18 17 years of age
22or older, has maintained residence in the State of Illinois,
23and is not a high school graduate; (b) a person who is



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1successfully completing an alternative education program under
2Section 2-3.81, Article 13A, or Article 13B; or (c) a person
3who is enrolled in a youth education program sponsored by the
4Illinois National Guard. For purposes of this Section,
5residence is that abode which the applicant considers his or
6her home. Applicants may provide as sufficient proof of such
7residence and as an acceptable form of identification a
8driver's license, valid passport, military ID, or other form of
9government-issued national or foreign identification that
10shows the applicant's name, address, date of birth, signature,
11and photograph or other acceptable identification as may be
12allowed by law or as regulated by the Illinois Community
13College Board. Such regional superintendent shall determine if
14the applicant meets statutory and regulatory state standards.
15If qualified the applicant shall at the time of such
16application pay a fee established by the Illinois Community
17College Board, which fee shall be paid into a special fund
18under the control and supervision of the regional
19superintendent. Such moneys received by the regional
20superintendent shall be used, first, for the expenses incurred
21in administering and scoring the examination, and next for
22other educational programs that are developed and designed by
23the regional superintendent of schools to assist those who
24successfully complete the high school level test of General
25Education Development in furthering their academic development
26or their ability to secure and retain gainful employment,



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1including programs for the competitive award based on test
2scores of college or adult education scholarship grants or
3similar educational incentives. Any excess moneys shall be paid
4into the institute fund.
5    Any applicant who has achieved the minimum passing
6standards as established by the Illinois Community College
7Board shall be notified in writing by the regional
8superintendent and shall be issued a high school equivalency
9certificate on the forms provided by the Illinois Community
10College Board. The regional superintendent shall then certify
11to the Illinois Community College Board the score of the
12applicant and such other and additional information that may be
13required by the Illinois Community College Board. The moneys
14received therefrom shall be used in the same manner as provided
15for in this Section.
16    Any applicant who has attained the age of 18 17 years and
17maintained residence in the State of Illinois and is not a high
18school graduate, any person who has enrolled in a youth
19education program sponsored by the Illinois National Guard, or
20any person who has successfully completed an alternative
21education program under Section 2-3.81, Article 13A, or Article
2213B is eligible to apply for a high school equivalency
23certificate (if he or she meets the requirements prescribed by
24the Illinois Community College Board) upon showing evidence
25that he or she has completed, successfully, the high school
26level General Educational Development Tests, administered by



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1the United States Armed Forces Institute, official GED Centers
2established in other states, or at Veterans' Administration
3Hospitals or the office of the State Superintendent of
4Education administered for the Illinois State Penitentiary
5System and the Department of Corrections. Such applicant shall
6apply to the regional superintendent of the region wherein he
7has maintained residence, and upon payment of a fee established
8by the Illinois Community College Board the regional
9superintendent shall issue a high school equivalency
10certificate, and immediately thereafter certify to the
11Illinois Community College Board the score of the applicant and
12such other and additional information as may be required by the
13Illinois Community College Board.
14    Notwithstanding the provisions of this Section, any
15applicant who has been out of school for at least one year may
16request the regional superintendent of schools to administer
17the restricted GED test upon written request of: The director
18of a program who certifies to the Chief Examiner of an official
19GED center that the applicant has completed a program of
20instruction provided by such agencies as the Job Corps, the
21Postal Service Academy or apprenticeship training program; an
22employer or program director for purposes of entry into
23apprenticeship programs; another State Department of Education
24in order to meet regulations established by that Department of
25Education, a post high school educational institution for
26purposes of admission, the Department of Professional



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1Regulation for licensing purposes, or the Armed Forces for
2induction purposes. The regional superintendent shall
3administer such test and the applicant shall be notified in
4writing that he is eligible to receive the Illinois High School
5Equivalency Certificate upon reaching age 18 17, provided he
6meets the standards established by the Illinois Community
7College Board.
8    Any test administered under this Section to an applicant
9who does not speak and understand English may at the discretion
10of the administering agency be given and answered in any
11language in which the test is printed. The regional
12superintendent of schools may waive any fees required by this
13Section in case of hardship.
14    In counties of over 3,000,000 population a GED certificate
15shall contain the signatures of the President of the Illinois
16Community College Board, the superintendent, president or
17other chief executive officer of the institution where GED
18instruction occurred and any other signatures authorized by the
19Illinois Community College Board.
20    The regional superintendent of schools shall furnish the
21Illinois Community College Board with any information that the
22Illinois Community College Board requests with regard to
23testing and certificates under this Section.
24(Source: P.A. 94-108, eff. 7-1-05; 95-609, eff. 6-1-08.)
25    (105 ILCS 5/26-1)  (from Ch. 122, par. 26-1)



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1    Sec. 26-1. Compulsory school age-Exemptions. Whoever has
2custody or control of any child between the ages of 7 and 18 17
3years (unless the child has already graduated from high school)
4shall cause such child to attend some public school in the
5district wherein the child resides the entire time it is in
6session during the regular school term, except as provided in
7Section 10-19.1, and during a required summer school program
8established under Section 10-22.33B; provided, that the
9following children shall not be required to attend the public
11        1. Any child attending a private or a parochial school
12    where children are taught the branches of education taught
13    to children of corresponding age and grade in the public
14    schools, and where the instruction of the child in the
15    branches of education is in the English language;
16        2. Any child who is physically or mentally unable to
17    attend school, such disability being certified to the
18    county or district truant officer by a competent physician
19    licensed in Illinois to practice medicine and surgery in
20    all its branches, a chiropractic physician licensed under
21    the Medical Practice Act of 1987, an advanced practice
22    nurse who has a written collaborative agreement with a
23    collaborating physician that authorizes the advanced
24    practice nurse to perform health examinations, a physician
25    assistant who has been delegated the authority to perform
26    health examinations by his or her supervising physician, or



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1    a Christian Science practitioner residing in this State and
2    listed in the Christian Science Journal; or who is excused
3    for temporary absence for cause by the principal or teacher
4    of the school which the child attends; the exemptions in
5    this paragraph (2) do not apply to any female who is
6    pregnant or the mother of one or more children, except
7    where a female is unable to attend school due to a
8    complication arising from her pregnancy and the existence
9    of such complication is certified to the county or district
10    truant officer by a competent physician;
11        3. Any child necessarily and lawfully employed
12    according to the provisions of the law regulating child
13    labor may be excused from attendance at school by the
14    county superintendent of schools or the superintendent of
15    the public school which the child should be attending, on
16    certification of the facts by and the recommendation of the
17    school board of the public school district in which the
18    child resides. In districts having part time continuation
19    schools, children so excused shall attend such schools at
20    least 8 hours each week;
21        4. Any child over 12 and under 14 years of age while in
22    attendance at confirmation classes;
23        5. Any child absent from a public school on a
24    particular day or days or at a particular time of day for
25    the reason that he is unable to attend classes or to
26    participate in any examination, study or work requirements



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1    on a particular day or days or at a particular time of day,
2    because the tenets of his religion forbid secular activity
3    on a particular day or days or at a particular time of day.
4    Each school board shall prescribe rules and regulations
5    relative to absences for religious holidays including, but
6    not limited to, a list of religious holidays on which it
7    shall be mandatory to excuse a child; but nothing in this
8    paragraph 5 shall be construed to limit the right of any
9    school board, at its discretion, to excuse an absence on
10    any other day by reason of the observance of a religious
11    holiday. A school board may require the parent or guardian
12    of a child who is to be excused from attending school due
13    to the observance of a religious holiday to give notice,
14    not exceeding 5 days, of the child's absence to the school
15    principal or other school personnel. Any child excused from
16    attending school under this paragraph 5 shall not be
17    required to submit a written excuse for such absence after
18    returning to school; and
19        6. Any child 16 years of age or older who (i) submits
20    to a school district evidence of necessary and lawful
21    employment pursuant to paragraph 3 of this Section and (ii)
22    is enrolled in a graduation incentives program pursuant to
23    Section 26-16 of this Code or an alternative learning
24    opportunities program established pursuant to Article 13B
25    of this Code.
26(Source: P.A. 96-367, eff. 8-13-09.)



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1    (105 ILCS 5/26-2)  (from Ch. 122, par. 26-2)
2    Sec. 26-2. Enrolled pupils below 7 or over 18 17.
3    (a) Any person having custody or control of a child who is
4below the age of 7 years or is 18 17 years of age or above and
5who is enrolled in any of grades kindergarten through 12 in the
6public school shall cause him to attend the public school in
7the district wherein he resides when it is in session during
8the regular school term, unless he is excused under paragraph
92, 3, 4, 5, or 6 of Section 26-1.
10    (b) A school district shall deny reenrollment in its
11secondary schools to any child 19 years of age or above who has
12dropped out of school and who could not, because of age and
13lack of credits, attend classes during the normal school year
14and graduate before his or her twenty-first birthday. A
15district may, however, enroll the child in a graduation
16incentives program under Section 26-16 of this Code or an
17alternative learning opportunities program established under
18Article 13B. No child shall be denied reenrollment for the
19above reasons unless the school district first offers the child
20due process as required in cases of expulsion under Section
2110-22.6. If a child is denied reenrollment after being provided
22with due process, the school district must provide counseling
23to that child and must direct that child to alternative
24educational programs, including adult education programs, that
25lead to graduation or receipt of a GED diploma.



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1    (c) A school or school district may deny enrollment to a
2student 18 17 years of age or older for one semester for
3failure to meet minimum academic standards if all of the
4following conditions are met:
5        (1) The student achieved a grade point average of less
6    than "D" (or its equivalent) in the semester immediately
7    prior to the current semester.
8        (2) The student and the student's parent or guardian
9    are given written notice warning that the student is
10    failing academically and is subject to denial from
11    enrollment for one semester unless a "D" average (or its
12    equivalent) or better is attained in the current semester.
13        (3) The parent or guardian is provided with the right
14    to appeal the notice, as determined by the State Board of
15    Education in accordance with due process.
16        (4) The student is provided with an academic
17    improvement plan and academic remediation services.
18        (5) The student fails to achieve a "D" average (or its
19    equivalent) or better in the current semester.
20    A school or school district may deny enrollment to a
21student 18 17 years of age or older for one semester for
22failure to meet minimum attendance standards if all of the
23following conditions are met:
24        (1) The student was absent without valid cause for 20%
25    or more of the attendance days in the semester immediately
26    prior to the current semester.



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1        (2) The student and the student's parent or guardian
2    are given written notice warning that the student is
3    subject to denial from enrollment for one semester unless
4    the student is absent without valid cause less than 20% of
5    the attendance days in the current semester.
6        (3) The student's parent or guardian is provided with
7    the right to appeal the notice, as determined by the State
8    Board of Education in accordance with due process.
9        (4) The student is provided with attendance
10    remediation services, including without limitation
11    assessment, counseling, and support services.
12        (5) The student is absent without valid cause for 20%
13    or more of the attendance days in the current semester.
14    A school or school district may not deny enrollment to a
15student (or reenrollment to a dropout) who is at least 18 17
16years of age or older but below 19 years for more than one
17consecutive semester for failure to meet academic or attendance
19    (d) No child may be denied enrollment or reenrollment under
20this Section in violation of the Individuals with Disabilities
21Education Act or the Americans with Disabilities Act.
22    (e) In this subsection (e), "reenrolled student" means a
23dropout who has reenrolled full-time in a public school. Each
24school district shall identify, track, and report on the
25educational progress and outcomes of reenrolled students as a
26subset of the district's required reporting on all enrollments.



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1A reenrolled student who again drops out must not be counted
2again against a district's dropout rate performance measure.
3The State Board of Education shall set performance standards
4for programs serving reenrolled students.
5    (f) The State Board of Education shall adopt any rules
6necessary to implement the changes to this Section made by
7Public Act 93-803.
8(Source: P.A. 95-417, eff. 8-24-07.)
9    (105 ILCS 5/26-14)  (from Ch. 122, par. 26-14)
10    Sec. 26-14. Truancy programs for dropouts. Any dropout, as
11defined in Section 26-2a, who is 18 17 years of age may apply
12to a school district for status as a truant, and the school
13district shall permit such person to participate in the
14district's various programs and resources for truants. At the
15time of the person's application, the district may request
16documentation of his dropout status for the previous 6 months.
17(Source: P.A. 93-858, eff. 1-1-05.)
18    Section 99. Effective date. This Act takes effect July 1,