Colorado Legislative Council Staff


Drafting Number:

Prime Sponsor(s):

LLS 99-0023

Sen. Anderson

Rep. Pfiffner


Bill Status:

Fiscal Analyst:

February 22, 1999

Senate Education

Harry Zeid (866-4753)



Summary of Assessment

            This bill allows a school to be known as a "neighborhood alternative school". Parents and legal guardians of a school's students would be allowed to petition the board of education to use educational programs in the school that are different from those selected by the school district. If the petition is signed by at least 60 percent of the parents and guardians, the bill directs the principal to submit the petition to the school's teachers for consideration.

            If the petition is supported by a majority of the teachers and agreed to by the principal, the petition would be transmitted to the school district board of education. The school district board of education would order that the petition be implemented, unless to do so would cause an undue financial burden on the district or unless a parent who did not sign the petition presents substantial evidence of fraud in petition signatures or other petition irregularities.

            The bill states that any petition for changes to an educational program may be presented to the school district board of education only once in any academic year, and must be submitted to the principal no later than 180 days before the start of the academic year in which the changes are to be implemented. The principal and teachers must act within 60 days after petitions are submitted. The board of education must make its determination on each petition submitted within 30 days after the action by the principal and teachers, and the school district would implement the plan for one year, or for a longer period as designated by the board of education.

            An educational program, as a neighborhood alternative school, would be permitted only so long as the percentage of students in that school scoring at a proficient level or higher on the statewide assessments increases from one academic year to the next. The bill would not be construed as a waiver of any state statute or rule.

            The bill would not affect the revenues or expenditures of the state or of local school districts. A petition for a neighborhood alternative school would be implemented by a school district, unless to do so would cause an undue financial burden on the district. Therefore, the bill is assessed as having no fiscal impact.

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