Rep(s). By Representatives Collins and Baker


HB125

ENGROSSED

A BILL
TO BE ENTITLED
AN ACT

Relating to public education; to create the Alabama Longitudinal Data System to provide for the matching of information about students from early learning through postsecondary education and into employment; to create the Alabama Office of Education and Workforce Statistics to develop, operate, and maintain the system; to provide for the protection and safeguarding of confidential student and workforce information; to create an advisory board to the Alabama Office of Education and Workforce Statistics; to provide for the adoption of statewide governance policies; to require the State Board of Education, the Board of Trustees of the Alabama Community College System, and the Alabama Commission on Higher Education to define remediation and the process of remediation to be utilized.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF ALABAMA:

Section 1. (a) For the purposes of this section, the following terms shall have the following meanings:

(1) ADVISORY BOARD. The Advisory Board of the Alabama Office of Education and Workforce Statistics.

(2) DEIDENTIFIED DATA. A data set in which parent and student identity information, including the state assigned student identifier and student Social Security number, has been removed.

(3) EDUCATIONAL DATA. Data relating to student performance.

a. The term includes all of the following:

1. Student performance on state and national assessments, including, but not limited to, any of the following:

(i) Course taking and completion.

(ii) Grade point average.

(iii) Remediation.

(iv) Retention.

(v) Degree, diploma, certificate, or credential attainment.

(vi) Enrollment.

(vii) Demographic data.

b. The term shall not include any of the following:

1. Juvenile delinquency records.

2. Criminal and juvenile records.

3. Medical and health records.

4. Discipline records.

(4) OFFICE. The Alabama Office of Education and Workforce Statistics.

(5) SYSTEM. The Alabama Longitudinal Data System.

(6) WORKFORCE DATA. Data relating to all of the following:

a. Employment status.

b. Wage information.

c. Geographic location of employment.

d. Employer information.

e. Field of employment.

(b)(1) The Alabama Longitudinal Data System is a statewide data system created to match information about students from early learning through postsecondary education and into employment. The purpose of the system includes the generation of timely and accurate information about deidentified student performance that can be used to enhance the education system of the state and guide decision makers at all levels, to further facilitate the enhancement of college and career ready students through the linkage of educational data and workforce data.

(2) All student information collected from participating education and workforce authorities shall be collected in accordance with state law and be protected, safeguarded, kept confidential, and used only by appropriate educational and workforce authorities in order to serve the best interests of students in accordance with state and federal law.

(3) Each providing educational and workforce authority shall retain ownership of all of its data shared for collaboration in the Alabama Longitudinal Data System.

(c)(1) There is established the Alabama Office of Education and Workforce Statistics, to be a separate division under the Department of Labor and to be headed by a Chief Policy Officer who will be appointed by the Governor from a list of nominations made by the advisory board of the office. The office may employ additional staff as necessary to carry out the functions of the office, contingent upon funding. The office may enter into contracts or other agreements with appropriate entities to the extent necessary to carry out the duties and responsibilities of the office and shall pursue all available funding for the development and maintenance of the system, including federal grant funding.

(2) For the limited purpose of accessing and compiling educational data for research purposes, the office shall be considered an authorized representative of the State Department of Education under applicable federal and state laws.

(3) The duties of the office shall include all of the following:

a. Development and implementation of the system in coordination with the advisory board.

b. Service as the collecting repository of educational data and workforce data in the Alabama Longitudinal Data System, including data sets provided by entities identified by the office and advisory board.

c. Oversight and maintenance of the system, including processes for collecting, managing, and reporting data.

d. Development of deidentification standards and processes using modern statistical methods.

e. Identification of critical policy questions to improve education and workforce outcomes at all levels.

f. Linkage of educational and workforce data accountable for data quality and integrity.

g. Protection and the maintenance of confidentiality of collected educational data, including compliance with the federal Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), and all other relevant state and federal privacy laws, and all relevant state cyber security policies, including rules and policies establish by the advisory board that are not in conflict with existing state or federal laws or rules or regulations.

h. Evaluation of public education and workforce development programs at all levels.

i. Support of research studies designed to improve instruction or to develop assessments for, or on behalf of, all providers.

(4) The system shall report to the Governor and the Legislature regarding the data collected and resource library created by August 30, 2016, and shall be fully operational by May 30, 2017.

(d)(1) The advisory board of the office is hereby established and shall consist of the following members:

a. The Commissioner of Labor, who shall serve as co-chair of the advisory board.

b. The Secretary of Information Technology, who shall serve as the co-chair of the advisory board.

c. The Governor's Education Policy Advisor.

d. The Chair of the Senate Education Budget Committee.

e. The Chair of the House Education Budget Committee.

f. A representative of the State Board of Education, who shall be appointed by the Governor to serve no more than two consecutive three-year terms.

g. The State Superintendent of Education, or his or her designee.

h. A representative of the Alabama Community College System Board of Trustees, who shall be appointed by the Governor to serve no more than two consecutive three-year terms.

i. The Chancellor of the Alabama Community College System, or his or her designee.

j. The chief academic officer at the University of Alabama System, or his or her designee.

k. The chief academic officer at Auburn University, or his or her designee.

l. The chief academic officer at the University of South Alabama, or his or her designee.

m. The chief academic officer at a state public historically black college or university, or his or her designee, to be nominated by the Governor.

n. The chief academic officer at a state public regional university, or his or her designee, to be nominated by the Governor.

o. The President of the Alabama Association of Independent Colleges and Universities, or his or her designee.

p. The Chair of the Alabama Commission on Higher Education, or his or her designee.

q. The Secretary of the Department of Early Childhood Education, or his or her designee.

r. The Secretary of Commerce, or his or her designee.

s. The State Service Commissioner of the State Department of Veterans Affairs, or his or her designee.

t. The Executive Director of the Economic Development Association of Alabama, or his or her designee.

u. The Chair of the Alabama Workforce Council, or his or her designee.

v. One information technology expert representing private industry with expertise in large data systems and data security, who shall be appointed by the Governor to serve no more than two consecutive three-year terms.

w. One representative of the local school system superintendents in this state, who shall be appointed by the Governor to serve no more than two consecutive three-year terms.

x. One representative of the public, who shall be appointed by the Governor to serve no more than one three-year term.

(2) All members of the advisory board shall serve at the pleasure of the appointing authority and shall reflect the racial, gender, geographic, urban and rural, and economic diversity of the state. Members of the advisory board shall not receive any compensation or expense reimbursement for serving on the advisory board.

(3) The duties of the advisory board shall include all of the following:

a. To oversee the development of a detailed data governance policy for the data system before the implementation of the system and to conduct an annual review of the policy.

b. To establish the research goals of the office.

c. To advise the office regarding matters relating to the operation and maintenance of the system as necessary.

d. To advise the office regarding the safeguarding and protection of the collected educational data in the system, including compliance with the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), and other applicable state and federal laws.

(4) The advisory board shall meet semiannually and at other times upon the call of the chair. One-half of the members of the advisory board shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. Members of the advisory board may participate in any meeting of the board by means of a conference telephone, video conference, or similar communications equipment provided that all persons participating at the meeting can hear one another at the same time, and participation by such means shall constitute presence in person at a meeting.

(5) The advisory board may form committees, work groups, and advisory councils as necessary.

(6) On January 15 of each year, the advisory board shall submit a report to the Governor and the Legislature summarizing the outcomes of the Alabama Longitudinal Data System for the year and the results of the usage of the system.

(e) To the extent permitted by law, the office, in consultation with the advisory board, shall do both of the following:

(1) Identify entities required to provide accurate educational and workforce data to the office for inclusion in the system. In addition to other entities identified by the office, the Department of Early Childhood Education and the State Department of Education shall be required to provide accurate data to the office. The Alabama Commission on Higher Education shall be responsible for reporting all data requested of colleges and universities to the office. Any private institutions of higher learning, private schools, or parochial schools choosing to participate in the system shall provide accurate data to the office. An entity required by the office to submit accurate educational and workforce data to the system shall cooperate with the office in the submission of the data.

(2) Determine what type of educational and workforce data is required to be provided by entities identified pursuant to this subsection.

(f)(1) The Chief Policy Officer, in consultation with the board, shall develop statewide governance policies regarding the use, privacy, and security of data consistent with state and federal law and applicable rules and regulations, including the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and other federal and state privacy laws.

(2) The policies adopted under this subsection shall ensure that direct access to personally identifying information in the system is restricted to staff and authorized representatives of the office. Information that has not been deidentified may not be reported or disclosed in any form by the office. Information is not considered to be deidentified if an individual is reasonably identifiable based on the size or uniqueness of the population under consideration.

(3) Notwithstanding anything in this act to the contrary, the office may not release information or data that may not be disclosed under the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), or any other applicable state or federal law protecting the privacy or confidentiality of the information.

Section 2. (a) The Alabama Office of Education and Workforce Statistics shall adopt rules for the implementation and administration of this act.

(b) With regard to rules protecting the privacy and confidentiality of educational and workforce data, at a minimum, the office shall adopt rules addressing the following:

(1) Restrictions on granting access to educational and workforce data in the system.

(2) Prohibitions against publishing educational and workforce data other than aggregate data or deidentified data in public reports.

(3) Consistent with applicable law, criteria for the approval of research and data requests from state and local agencies and the Legislature.

(4) Prohibitions against the transfer of educational or workforce data to any federal, state, or local agency or nongovernmental organization, except for certain necessary disclosures determined by the office.

(5) Development of a detailed data security plan for the system that includes guidelines for authorizing access to the system and to educational and workforce data, including guidelines for authentication of authorized access.

(6) Implementation of privacy and security audits.

(7) Plans for responding to security breaches, including notifications, remediations, and related procedures.

(8) Data retention and disposal policies.

(9) Data security training and policies, including technical, physical, and administrative safeguards.

Section 3. By December 31, 2016, the State Board of Education, the Board of Trustees of the Alabama Community College System, and the Alabama Commission on Higher Education, by rule, shall jointly define remediation and the process of remediation to be utilized.

Section 4. Any entity receiving state funds will be required to comply with this act.

Section 5. This act shall become effective immediately following its passage and approval by the Governor, or its otherwise becoming law.


Education
Employment
Labor Department
Business and Commerce
Colleges and Universities
Longitundinal Data System
Office of Education and Workforce Statistics