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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

124D.13 EARLY CHILDHOOD FAMILY EDUCATION (ECFE) PROGRAMS.
    Subdivision 1. Establishment. A district that provides a community education program
under sections 124D.18 and 124D.19 may establish an early childhood family education program.
Two or more districts, each of which provides a community education program, may cooperate to
jointly provide an early childhood family education program.
    Subd. 2. Program characteristics. (a) Early childhood family education programs are
programs for children in the period of life from birth to kindergarten, for the parents and other
relatives of these children, and for expectant parents. To the extent that funds are insufficient to
provide programs for all children, early childhood family education programs should emphasize
programming for a child from birth to age three and encourage parents and other relatives to
involve four- and five-year-old children in school readiness programs, and other public and
nonpublic early learning programs. Early childhood family education programs may include
the following:
(1) programs to educate parents and other relatives about the physical, mental, and emotional
development of children;
(2) programs to enhance the skills of parents and other relatives in providing for their
children's learning and development;
(3) learning experiences for children and parents and other relatives that promote children's
development;
(4) activities designed to detect children's physical, mental, emotional, or behavioral
problems that may cause learning problems;
(5) activities and materials designed to encourage self-esteem, skills, and behavior that
prevent sexual and other interpersonal violence;
(6) educational materials which may be borrowed for home use;
(7) information on related community resources;
(8) programs to prevent child abuse and neglect;
(9) other programs or activities to improve the health, development, and school readiness
of children; or
(10) activities designed to maximize development during infancy.
The programs must not include activities for children that do not require substantial
involvement of the children's parents or other relatives. The programs must be reviewed
periodically to assure the instruction and materials are not racially, culturally, or sexually
biased. The programs must encourage parents to be aware of practices that may affect equitable
development of children.
(b) For the purposes of this section, "relative" or "relatives" means noncustodial grandparents
or other persons related to a child by blood, marriage, adoption, or foster placement, excluding
parents.
    Subd. 3. Substantial parental involvement. The requirement of substantial parental or other
relative involvement in subdivision 2 means that:
(a) parents or other relatives must be physically present much of the time in classes with
their children or be in concurrent classes;
(b) parenting education or family education must be an integral part of every early childhood
family education program;
(c) early childhood family education appropriations must not be used for traditional day care
or nursery school, or similar programs; and
(d) the form of parent involvement common to kindergarten, elementary school, or early
childhood special education programs such as parent conferences, newsletters, and notes to
parents do not qualify a program under subdivision 2.
    Subd. 4. Home visiting program. A district that levies for home visiting under section
124D.135, subdivision 6, shall use this revenue to include as part of the early childhood family
education programs a parent education component that is designed to reach isolated or at-risk
families.
The home visiting program must use:
(1) an established risk assessment tool to determine the family's level of risk;
(2) establish clear objectives and protocols for home visits;
(3) encourage families to make a transition from home visits to site-based parenting
programs;
(4) provide program services that are community-based, accessible, and culturally relevant;
and
(5) foster collaboration among existing agencies and community-based organizations that
serve young children and their families.
Home visitors should reflect the demographic composition of the community to the extent
possible.
    Subd. 5. Separate accounts. The district must maintain a separate account within the
community education fund for money for early childhood family education programs.
    Subd. 6. Participants' fees. A district must establish a reasonable sliding fee scale but it
shall waive the fee for a participant unable to pay.
    Subd. 7. Additional funding. A district may receive funds from any governmental agency or
private source.
    Subd. 8. Coordination. (a) A district must describe strategies to coordinate and maximize
public and private community resources and reduce duplication of services.
(b) A district is encouraged to coordinate adult basic education programs provided to
parents and early childhood family education programs provided to children to accomplish the
goals of section 124D.895.
    Subd. 9. District advisory councils. The board must appoint an advisory council from the
area in which the program is provided. A majority of the council must be parents participating in
the program. The council must assist the board in developing, planning, and monitoring the early
childhood family education program. The council must report to the board and the community
education advisory council.
    Subd. 10. Alternative council. A board may direct the community education council,
required according to section 124D.19, subdivision 2, to perform the functions of the Advisory
Council for Early Childhood Family Education.
    Subd. 11. Teachers. A school board must employ necessary qualified teachers for its early
childhood family education programs.
    Subd. 12. Assistance. The department must provide assistance to districts with programs
described in this section. The department must establish guidelines that list barriers to learning
and development affecting children served by early childhood family education programs.
History: 1984 c 463 art 4 s 1; 1Sp1985 c 12 art 4 s 2; 1989 c 329 art 4 s 3; 1990 c 562 art
4 s 1; 1991 c 130 s 37; 1991 c 265 art 4 s 3-5; 1992 c 571 art 10 s 1,2; 1993 c 224 art 4 s 11;
1Sp1995 c 3 art 16 s 13; 1997 c 162 art 1 s 5; 1998 c 397 art 3 s 43-50,103; art 11 s 3; 1999 c
205 art 1 s 41,70; 1Sp2003 c 9 art 7 s 3-5; 2006 c 263 art 6 s 6,7