5472L.01I                                                                                                                                                  D. ADAM CRUMBLISS, Chief Clerk



To amend chapter 161, RSMo, by adding thereto one new section relating to the Missouri GED+ Program.

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the state of Missouri, as follows:

            Section A. Chapter 161, RSMo, is amended by adding thereto one new section, to be known as section 161.750, to read as follows:

            161.750. 1. There is hereby established within the department of elementary and secondary education the "GED+ Program" to be administered by the commissioner of education. The program shall consist of Missouri adult education and literacy programs that demonstrate a commitment to ensure that students:

            (1) Attain a certification of General Educational Development (GED); and

            (2) Proceed from GED attainment to a college or post-secondary vocational or technical school or high-wage job with workplace skill development opportunities.

            2. The state board of education shall promulgate rules and regulations for Missouri adult education and literacy programs that:

            (1) Establish measurable adult education and literacy program standards to meet the goals outlined in subsection 1 of this section;

            (2) Specify the knowledge, skills, and competencies, in measurable terms, that students must demonstrate to successfully complete the program; and 

            (3) Require rigorous coursework with standards of competency in basic academic subjects for students pursuing vocational and technical education.

            3. The board of education shall develop a partnership plan in cooperation and with the advice of local business persons, labor leaders, and representatives of college and post-secondary vocational and technical school representatives. The plan shall specify a mechanism to receive information on an annual basis from those who developed the plan, in addition to community leaders and teachers, to update the plan in order to best meet the goals of the program as provided in subsection 1 of this section. Further, the plan shall detail the procedures used in the adult education and literacy programs to identify students that may need intervention services to remain in GED preparation classes. The plan shall outline transitioning and mentoring services provided to GED recipients who will enter post-secondary education and the workforce.

            4. For any school year, funding to administer the program shall be authorized by the commissioner of education from the amount appropriated for this program, less those funds necessary to reimburse eligible students under subsection 5 of this section.

            5. The commissioner of education shall, by rule and regulation of the state board of education and with the advice and consent of the coordinating board for higher education, establish a procedure for the reimbursement of the cost of tuition to any public community college or vocational or technical school for any student who has:

            (1) Been enrolled in an adult education and literacy program in the state for at least seventy-five hours prior to taking and passing the GED, that meets the requirements of subsection 2 of this section;

            (2) Made a good faith effort to first secure all available federal sources of funding that could be applied to the reimbursement described in this subsection;

            (3) Earned a minimum cumulative standard score of 2,700 on his or her GED, with no individual test score less than 410; and

            (4) Completed at least fifty hours of volunteer tutoring in the student's adult education and literacy program.

            6. The commissioner of education shall develop a procedure for evaluating the effectiveness of the program established under this section. Such evaluation shall be conducted annually with the results of the evaluation provided to the governor, speaker of the house of representatives, and president pro tem of the senate.

            7. Any rule or portion of a rule, as that term is defined in section 536.010, that is created under the authority delegated in this section shall become effective only if it complies with and is subject to all of the provisions of chapter 536 and, if applicable, section 536.028. This section and chapter 536 are nonseverable and if any of the powers vested with the general assembly pursuant to chapter 536 to review, to delay the effective date, or to disapprove and annul a rule are subsequently held unconstitutional, then the grant of rulemaking authority and any rule proposed or adopted after August 28, 2010, shall be invalid and void.