Chapter 321

Chapter 321

2003 -- H 5199 AS AMENDED

Enacted 07/17/03







     Introduced By: Representative S Anderson

     Date Introduced: January 23, 2003


It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:


     SECTION 1. Section 16-7.1-10 of the General Laws in Chapter 16-7.1 entitled "The

Rhode Island Student Investment Initiative" is hereby amended to read as follows:

     16-7.1-10. Professional development investment fund. -- (a) In order to continue

developing the skills of Rhode Island's teachers and staff, the general assembly establishes a

Professional Development Investment Fund. The general assembly shall annually appropriate

some sum and distribute it based on a pupil-teacher ratio that shall be adjusted annually by the

commissioner of elementary and secondary education. School districts may use funds received

under this category of education aid to replace up to, but no more than, fifty percent (50%) of the

amount the school district spent for professional development programs in the previous fiscal

year. The expenditure of these funds shall be determined by a committee at each school

consisting of the school principal, two (2) teachers selected by the teaching staff of the school,

and two (2) parents of students attending the school. Schools that enroll students in the early

grades (kindergarten through grade three (3)) must expend these funds on the development of

scientific research based, as described in the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, Title 1, Part B,

Section 1208 [20 U.S.C. section 6368] reading instruction to improve students reading

performance. Collaborative programs between schools are encouraged. These resources shall be

used to close student performance gaps in accordance with the school's and district's strategic

plan pursuant to section 16-7.1-2. Additional funds shall be allocated to the department of

elementary and secondary education to support teacher professional development in all districts,

including, but not limited to:

      (1) Supporting mentoring systems;

      (2) Providing school districts with program support to assist teachers in local school

districts to improve reading instruction and enhance the integration of reading throughout the

curriculum with the goal of improving student performance to high standards;

      (3) Support for the design and implementation of a system for the training of school


     (4) Support for national board certification of teachers, application fees for a certificate of

clinical competence issued by the American speech-language hearing association, and grants for

coordination and support of school-based teacher professional development; and

     (5) The practice of scientific research based reading instruction to improve reading


      (b) In FY 2003, the additional funds allocated to the department of elementary and

secondary education pursuant to this section shall be used only to support the activities described

in subdivisions (a)(2) and (a)(5) of this section.

      (c) The department shall continue to use resources allocated within its operating budget

to support National Board Certification activities and for FY 2003 that amount shall be ninety

thousand dollars ($90,000).

      (d) Out of the funds appropriated by the general assembly for professional development

in subsection (a) of this section, twenty-five percent (25%) shall be set aside for district-wide

professional development activities. The expenditure of this district-wide professional

development set-aside shall be determined by a committee in each district consisting of the

superintendent or his or her designee, three (3) teachers appointed by the collective bargaining

agent, and one member of the Rhode Island department of elementary and secondary education

field service team servicing that school district designated by the commissioner of elementary and

secondary education. Collaborative programs between school districts are permissible.

     SECTION 2. This act shall take effect upon passage.