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CHAPTER 5A. INTERNATIONAL STUDENT EXCHANGE ORGANIZATIONS

Table of Sections
Section Headnote
5A.01 DEFINITIONS.
5A.02 ORGANIZATION REGISTRATION.
5A.03 ORGANIZATION APPLICATION FOR REGISTRATION.
5A.04 RULES.
5A.05 INFORMATIONAL DOCUMENT.
5A.06 COMPLAINTS.
5A.07 VIOLATIONS; MISDEMEANOR.

5A.01 DEFINITIONS.

Subdivision 1.Scope.

The definitions in this section apply to this chapter.

Subd. 2.International student exchange visitor placement organization; organization.

"International student exchange visitor placement organization" or "organization" means a person, partnership, corporation, or other entity that regularly arranges the placement of international student exchange visitors for the purpose, in whole or in part, of allowing the student an opportunity to attend school in the United States.

Subd. 3.International student exchange visitor; student.

"International student exchange visitor" or "student" means a person 18 years of age or under, or up to age 21 if enrolled or to be enrolled in high school in this state, placed by an international student exchange visitor placement organization, who enters the United States with a nonimmigrant visa.

History:

1993 c 238 s 1

5A.02 ORGANIZATION REGISTRATION.

(a) All international student exchange visitor placement organizations that place students in schools in the state shall register with the secretary of state.

(b) Information provided to the secretary of state under this chapter is a public record.

(c) Registration must not be considered or be represented as an endorsement of the organization by the secretary of state or the state of Minnesota.

History:

1993 c 238 s 2

5A.03 ORGANIZATION APPLICATION FOR REGISTRATION.

Subdivision 1.Placing high school students in Minnesota.

(a) An application for registration as an international student exchange visitor placement organization must be submitted in the form prescribed by the secretary of state. The application must include:

(1) evidence that the organization meets the standards established by the secretary of state by rule;

(2) the name, address, and telephone number of the organization, its chief executive officer, and the person within the organization who has primary responsibility for supervising placements within the state;

(3) the organization's unified business identification number, if any;

(4) the organization's Office of Exchange Coordination and Designation, United States Department of State number, if any;

(5) evidence of Council on Standards for International Educational Travel listing, if any;

(6) whether the organization is exempt from federal income tax; and

(7) a list of the organization's placements in Minnesota for the previous academic year including the number of students placed, their home countries, the school districts in which they were placed, and the length of their placements.

(b) The application must be signed by the chief executive officer of the organization and the person within the organization who has primary responsibility for supervising placements within Minnesota. If the secretary of state determines that the application is complete, the secretary of state shall file the application and the applicant is registered.

(c) Organizations that have registered shall inform the secretary of state of any changes in the information required under paragraph (a), clause (1), within 30 days of the change. There is no fee to amend a registration.

(d) Registration under this chapter is valid for one year. The registration may be renewed annually. The fee to renew a registration is $50 per year.

(e) Organizations registering for the first time in Minnesota must pay an initial registration fee of $150.

(f) Fees collected by the secretary of state under this section must be deposited in the state treasury and credited to the general fund.

Subd. 2.Placing Minnesota students in travel abroad programs.

(a) A school district or charter school with enrolled students who participate in a foreign exchange or study or other travel abroad program under a written agreement between the district or charter school and the program provider must use a form developed by the Department of Education to annually report to the department by November 1 the following data from the previous school year:

(1) the number of Minnesota student deaths that occurred while Minnesota students were participating in the foreign exchange or study or other travel abroad program and that resulted from Minnesota students participating in the program;

(2) the number of Minnesota students hospitalized due to accidents and the illnesses that occurred while Minnesota students were participating in the foreign exchange or study or other travel abroad program and that resulted from Minnesota students participating in the program; and

(3) the name and type of the foreign exchange or study or other travel abroad program and the city or region where the reported death, hospitalization due to accident, or the illness occurred.

(b) School districts and charter schools must ask but must not require enrolled eligible students and the parents or guardians of other enrolled students who complete a foreign exchange or study or other travel abroad program to disclose the information under paragraph (a).

(c) When reporting the data under paragraph (a), a school district or charter school may supplement the data with a brief explanatory statement. The Department of Education annually must aggregate and publish the reported data on the department Web site in a format that facilitates public access to the aggregated data and include links to both the United States Department of State's Consular Information Program that informs the public of conditions abroad that may affect students' safety and security and the publicly available reports on sexual assaults and other criminal acts affecting students participating in a foreign exchange or study or other travel abroad program.

(d) School districts and charter schools with enrolled students who participate in foreign exchange or study or other travel abroad programs under a written agreement between the district or charter school and the program provider are encouraged to adopt policies supporting the programs and to include program standards in their policies to ensure students' health and safety.

(e) To be eligible under this subdivision to provide a foreign exchange or study or other travel abroad program to Minnesota students enrolled in a school district or charter school, a program provider annually must register with the secretary of state and provide the following information on a form developed by the secretary of state: the name, address, and telephone number of the program provider, its chief executive officer, and the person within the provider's organization who is primarily responsible for supervising programs within the state; the program provider's unified business identification number, if any; whether the program provider is exempt from federal income tax; a list of the program provider's placements in foreign countries for the previous school year including the number of Minnesota students placed, where Minnesota students were placed, and the length of their placement; the terms and limits of the medical and accident insurance available to cover participating students and the process for filing a claim; and the signatures of the program provider's chief executive officer and the person primarily responsible for supervising Minnesota students' placements in foreign countries. If the secretary of state determines the registration is complete, the secretary of state shall file the registration and the program provider is registered. Registration with the secretary of state must not be considered or represented as an endorsement of the program provider by the secretary of state. The secretary of state annually must publish on its Web site aggregated data under paragraph (c) received from the Department of Education.

(f) Program providers, annually by August 1, must provide the data required under paragraph (a), clauses (1) to (3), to the districts and charter schools with enrolled students participating in the provider's program.

(g) The Department of Education must publish the information it has under paragraph (c), but it is not responsible for any errors or omissions in the information provided to it by a school district or charter school. A school district or charter school is not responsible for omissions in the information provided to it by students and programs.

5A.04 RULES.

(a) The secretary of state shall adopt by rule standards for international student exchange visitor placement organizations. In adopting the rules, the secretary of state may adopt standards established by the Office of Exchange Coordination and Designation, United States Department of State and the Council on Standards for International Educational Travel. The secretary of state may incorporate standards established by the Office of Exchange Coordination and Designation, United States Department of State or the Council on Standards for International Educational Travel by reference and may accept an organization's designation by the Office of Exchange Coordination and Designation, United States Department of State or acceptance for listing by the Council on Standards for International Educational Travel as evidence of compliance with the standards.

(b) The secretary of state must require that an international student exchange visitor placement organization's application form for participation as a host family include a signed document complying with section 299C.62, subdivision 2, that gives the organization permission to conduct a background check on members of the host family. Sections 299C.60 to 299C.64 apply to the background check, except that for purposes of this section the term "background check crime" includes any felony.

5A.05 INFORMATIONAL DOCUMENT.

International student exchange organizations that have agreed to provide services to place students in the state shall provide an informational document in English, to each student, host family, and superintendent of the school district in which the student is being placed. The document must be provided before placement and must include the following:

(1) an explanation of the services to be performed by the organization for the student, host family, and school district;

(2) a summary of this chapter prepared by the secretary of state; and

(3) telephone numbers that the student, host family, and school district may call for assistance. The telephone numbers shall include, at a minimum, an in-state telephone number for the organization, and the telephone numbers of the organization's national headquarters, if any, the Office of Exchange Coordination and Designation, United States Department of State, and the Office of the Secretary of State.

5A.06 COMPLAINTS.

The secretary of state may, upon receipt of a complaint regarding an international student exchange organization, report the matter to the organization involved, the Office of Exchange Coordination and Designation, United States Department of State, or the Council on Standards for International Educational Travel, as the secretary of state considers appropriate. The secretary may also investigate complaints received under this section to determine if the complaint is limited to one high school or if there are systemic problems with placements made by a particular organization. The secretary of state may terminate an organization's registration if the secretary determines the organization has failed to remain in compliance with local, state, and federal statutes, rules, and regulations.

5A.07 VIOLATIONS; MISDEMEANOR.

A person who fails to register as required by this chapter or who willfully and knowingly gives false or incorrect information to the secretary of state in filing statements required by this chapter, whether or not the statement or report is verified, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

History:

1993 c 238 s 7