2020 Session

Budget Amendments - HB30 (Conference Report)

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Virginia Early Childhood Foundation Mixed-Delivery Slots

Item 144 #9c

Item 144 #9c

First Year - FY2021 Second Year - FY2022
Direct Aid to Public Education FY2021 $5,000,000 FY2022 $5,000,000 GF

Page 125, line 23, strike "$38,181,554" and insert "$43,181,554".
Page 125, line 23, strike "$40,269,141" and insert "$45,269,141".

Page 126, line 26, in both instances, strike "$1,250,000" and insert "$6,250,000".

Page 131, after line 43, insert:

"3. Of this amount, $5,000,000 the first year and $5,000,000 the second year from the general fund is provided for a pilot initiative to support public-private delivery of pre-kindergarten services for at least 500 at-risk three- and four-year-old children each year.  Programs must provide full-day or half-day and, at least, school-year services.

a) The Department of Education shall establish academic standards that are in accordance with appropriate preparation for students to be ready to successfully enter kindergarten. These standards shall be established in such a manner as to be measurable for student achievement and success. Students shall be required to be evaluated in the fall and in the spring by each participating provider and grantees must certify that the Virginia Preschool Initiative standards are followed in order to receive the funding for quality preschool education and criteria for the service components. Such standards shall align with the Virginia Standards of Learning for Kindergarten.

b) The Department of Education shall require and ensure that all participating classrooms have the quality of their teacher-child interactions assessed through a rigorous and research-based observation instrument at least once every two years.

c) Any locality that desires to participate in this grant program must submit a proposal each year to the Virginia Early Childhood Foundation. For the first year, the application must be submitted by August 15. For subsequent years, the application must be submitted by May 15 to align with the Virginia Preschool Initiative timeline. Each application shall identify a lead agency for this program within the locality. The lead agency shall be responsible for developing a local plan for the delivery of quality preschool services to at-risk three- and four-year-old children in private settings that demonstrates the coordination of resources and the combination of funding streams in an effort to serve the greatest number of at-risk children.

d) The proposal must demonstrate: (i) coordination with all parties necessary for the successful delivery of comprehensive services, including schools, child care providers, local social services agencies, Head Start, local health departments, and other groups identified by the lead agency, (ii) a plan for supporting inclusive practices for children with identified special needs, and (iii) a plan to transition the pilot into a sustainable program that is supported with a similar level of state support as Virginia Preschool Initiative slots.

e) Local plans must indicate the number of at-risk three- and four-year-old children to be served, and the eligibility criteria for participation in this program shall be consistent with the economic and educational risk factors stated in the current program guidelines that are specific to: (i) family income at or below 200 percent of federal poverty guidelines, (ii) homelessness, (iii) student's parents or guardians are school dropouts, or (iv) family income is above 200 percent but at or below 350 percent of federal poverty guidelines in the case of students with special needs or disabilities. Up to 15 percent of slots may be filled based on locally established eligibility criteria so as to meet the unique needs of at-risk children in the community.

f) Notwithstanding any provisions of § 22.1-299, Code of Virginia, and in order to achieve the priorities of the Joint Subcommittee on Early Childhood Care and Education for exploring the feasibility of and barriers to mixed delivery preschool systems in Virginia, recipients of a Mixed-Delivery Preschool grant shall be provided maximum flexibility within their respective pilot initiative in order to fully implement the associated goals and objectives of the pilot. Recipients of a Mixed-Delivery Preschool grant and divisions participating in such grant pilot activities shall be exempted from all regulatory and statutory provisions related to teacher licensure requirements and qualifications when paid by public funds within the confines of the Mixed-Delivery Preschool pilot initiative.

g) Children served by the pilots shall be assigned student identification numbers as provided in § 22.1-287.03 B of the Code of Virginia to evaluate pilot program outcomes and to permit comparison with Virginia Preschool Initiative outcomes.

h) Pilot providers shall provide information to the Department of Education as necessary to fulfill the reporting requirement established."


(This amendment provides $5.0 million each year from the general fund to support mixed-delivery pre-kindergarten pilot programs for at least 500 at-risk three- and four-year olds. These slots do not require a local match. The amendment also requires pilot program applications to address how each pilot will transition to a level of state support similar to the state support provided for VPI slots. This amendment also ensures that children served by the pilot programs will be assigned student identification numbers to evaluate and compare outcomes. A corresponding amendment in Item 145 relocates this initiative to Item 144.)