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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

SF 2608

as introduced - 87th Legislature (2011 - 2012) Posted on 04/24/2012 09:18am

KEY: stricken = removed, old language.
underscored = added, new language.

Current Version - as introduced

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A bill for an act
relating to early education; dedicating certain net increases in revenue to an early
education scholarship program; proposing coding for new law in Minnesota
Statutes, chapter 119B.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

new text begin [119B.0545] REVENUE ALLOCATION.
new text end

new text begin Each year, the commissioner of management and budget must calculate the new
revenue raised by H.F. 2810, or any similarly styled bill intended to fund a Minnesota
Vikings stadium. Any net revenue remaining after any required allocation for the
Minnesota Vikings stadium fund must be allocated to the early childhood scholarship
program under section 119B.055.
new text end

Sec. 2.

new text begin [119B.055] EARLY EDUCATION SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Policy and purpose. new text end

new text begin (a) The legislature finds that the current
state of school readiness and education outcomes in Minnesota requires immediate and
transformative action. The legislature notes that recent research findings illustrate the
challenges plaguing Minnesota's children and the state's future workforce, including:
new text end

new text begin (1) 50 percent of Minnesota kindergartners are not ready for school, meaning half of
Minnesota's students are behind before they even start school;
new text end

new text begin (2) Minnesota's achievement gaps between white, black, Hispanic, Asian, and
American Indian students are the highest in the country at grades 4 and 8, as well as
high school graduation;
new text end

new text begin (3) the share of Minnesota's 4th graders reading below the basic level for 2009
was 61 percent for the state's African Americans, 62 percent for Latinos, 37 percent for
Asians, and 57 percent for American Indians;
new text end

new text begin (4) of the state's white 4th graders, 22 percent were below basic proficiency for
reading;
new text end

new text begin (5) Minnesota's average costs for child care for young children are $10,000 for
infant care and $8,200 for four-year-olds;
new text end

new text begin (6) Minnesota ranks 38th out of 50 in terms of families' access to preschool;
new text end

new text begin (7) current spending for early education programs lacks accountability for outcomes
and does not reflect current child development science or families' economic realities; and
new text end

new text begin (8) Minnesota currently has 55,000 children younger than six living in families with
incomes below 100 percent of the federal poverty guidelines.
new text end

new text begin (b) The policy and purpose of this section is to use a portion of the resources raised
under this act to provide quality early education options to Minnesota's children to remedy
the conditions listed in paragraph (a).
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Establishment. new text end

new text begin The early education scholarship program is established to
make child care and early education services available to eligible low-income families.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin Eligible family. new text end

new text begin A family is eligible for a scholarship under this section
if the family:
new text end

new text begin (1) meets the requirements under sections 119B.07; 119B.09, subdivisions 1 and 4;
and 119B.10, except for families participating in the MFIP or diversionary work programs
under chapter 256J and transition year families under section 119B.011, subdivision 20;
new text end

new text begin (2) resides in Minnesota; and
new text end

new text begin (3) has a child who is at least three but not yet six years of age.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin Eligible providers; provider choice. new text end

new text begin (a) Providers eligible to accept an
early education scholarship as payment for child care or early education services for a
child include:
new text end

new text begin (1) an individual or child care center or facility, either licensed or unlicensed,
providing legal child care services as defined under section 245A.03;
new text end

new text begin (2) a school readiness program under section 124D.15; and
new text end

new text begin (3) a federal Head Start program.
new text end

new text begin (b) Parents may choose child care or early education providers as defined under
paragraph (a) that best meet the needs of their family. The state shall make resources
available to parents in choosing child care and early education services. The state may
require a parent to sign a release stating their knowledge and responsibilities in choosing a
legal provider described under paragraph (a).
new text end

new text begin Subd. 5. new text end

new text begin Amount and length of early education scholarships. new text end

new text begin (a) The amount of
an early education scholarship under this section must be based on:
new text end

new text begin (1) the income of the family, as determined under section 119B.09, subdivision 4;
new text end

new text begin (2) the number of people in the family, as defined under section 119B.011,
subdivision 13; and
new text end

new text begin (3) the number of eligible children in the applicant's family.
new text end

new text begin (b) The maximum scholarship awarded to the applicant for each eligible child in a
12-month time period must be determined by the commissioner.
new text end

new text begin (c) Families receiving a scholarship under this section shall continue to receive a
scholarship until they are no longer eligible.
new text end

new text begin (d) Families are responsible for payment to providers of any fees or charges not
covered by the scholarship.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 6. new text end

new text begin Provider rates. new text end

new text begin Eligible providers may not charge families using
scholarships under this section a rate that is higher than the rate charged to private paying
clients.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 7. new text end

new text begin Funds; appropriations; waiting list. new text end

new text begin Scholarships provided under this
section may be funded with state general funds, federal child care and development
funds, and county funds. Within the limits of available appropriations, the commissioner
shall distribute scholarships to eligible families in the form and manner established
by the commissioner. If there are insufficient funds to serve all eligible families, the
commissioner must prioritize applicants on the basis of income, prioritize applicants
who demonstrate to the commissioner's satisfaction that their children will be enrolled in
a quality-rated program, provide geographical balance when awarding the scholarships,
and keep a written record of the number of eligible families who have applied for a
scholarship. The commissioner must update the waiting list at least every six months.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 8. new text end

new text begin Information. new text end

new text begin The commissioner shall develop and provide information
about the program to eligible providers, human service agencies, and potential applicants.
new text end

new text begin EFFECTIVE DATE. new text end

new text begin This section is effective July 1, 2013.
new text end

Sec. 3. new text beginAPPROPRIATION.
new text end

new text begin The amount allocated under section 1 is annually appropriated from the general
fund to the commissioner of education for early education scholarships under Minnesota
Statutes, section 119B.055.
new text end