|SAME AS||SAME AS S07838-A|
|Amd §§305 & 3602, Ed L|
|Requires the department of education to report information regarding counselors, social workers and psychologists in schools and to implement a plan to increase the school counselor, school social worker and school psychologist to student ratio to nationally accepted standards and provide funding for such.|
|04/18/2018||referred to education|
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NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY
MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION
submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
BILL NUMBER: A10387 SPONSOR: Gunther
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the education law, in relation to requiring the department of education to report information regarding counselors, social workers and psychologists in schools   PURPOSE: To gather information in order to provide better counseling services to our students throughout the state by ensuring the state meets the nationally accepted level of school counselors, school social workers, and school psychologists per school.   SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Section 1 adds new subdivision 57 to section 305, which directs the commissioner of education to submit a report to the governor, temporary president of the senate, and the speaker of the assembly, and specifies the data the commissioner must include in such report. Following the report, the commissioner must develop a proposal to increase the number of school counselors, school social workers, and school psychologists to meet nationally accepted counseling professional to student ratios in New York State. Section 2 provides the effective date.   JUSTIFICATION: The American School Counselor Association recommends a ratio of 1:250 school counselors to students; in New York, the ratio is more than twice that, at 1:635 school counselors. Similarly, the School Social Work Association of America recommends a ratio of 1:250 school social workers to students, and an even lower ratio of 1:50 where students require more intensive care. The National Association of School Psychologists recom- mends a ratio of 1:500-700 school psychologists to students, a ratio that New York met in the 2009-2010 school year with a ratio of 1:600. With the guidance of school counselors, school social workers, and school psychologists, students stand a greater chance to succeed in their education and establishing a concrete path to their futures. This bill seeks to increase access to mental health services in our schools by first tracking the number of school counselors, school social workers, and school psychologists who serve students throughout the state, and directs the state Education Commissioner to develop a plan to achieve nationally accepted professional-to-student ratios in every district and region. The bill also provides that any additional expense incurred by local districts in meeting the standards for school counselors, psychologists and social workers should be reimbursed by the state.   LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: New Bill.   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: To be determined.   EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately.
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STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 10387 IN ASSEMBLY April 18, 2018 ___________ Introduced by M. of A. GUNTHER -- read once and referred to the Commit- tee on Education AN ACT to amend the education law, in relation to requiring the depart- ment of education to report information regarding counselors, social workers and psychologists in schools The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem- bly, do enact as follows: 1 Section 1. Section 305 of the education law is amended by adding a new 2 subdivision 57 to read as follows: 3 57. a. The commissioner shall submit to the governor, the temporary 4 president of the senate and the speaker of the assembly, a report 5 regarding school counselors, school social workers and school psychol- 6 ogists for the current school year. Such report shall include, but not 7 be limited to: (i) the number of full and part-time school counselors, 8 school social workers and school psychologists in each school, (ii) the 9 ratio of students to the number of school counselors, the ratio of 10 students to the number of school social workers, and the ratio of 11 students to the number of school psychologists in each school, and (iii) 12 whether the school counselor, school social worker or school psychol- 13 ogist is providing counseling assistance to more than one school. 14 b. After such report is issued, the commissioner shall prepare a 15 proposal on how to increase the number of school counselors, school 16 social workers and school psychologists to meet the nationally accepted 17 ratio of students to the number of school counselors, ratio of students 18 to the number of school social workers, and ratio of students to the 19 number of school psychologists within New York state such as those 20 recommended by the school social work association of America, the Ameri- 21 can school counselors association and the national association of school 22 psychologists. When preparing such proposal, the commissioner shall take 23 into consideration the specific needs of individual school districts and 24 the region in which such school district is located. 25 c. For purposes of this subdivision, the following terms shall have 26 the following meanings: EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD14936-06-8A. 10387 2 1 (i) "school counselor" shall mean any personnel, licensed and certi- 2 fied by New York state as school counselor, hired to provide individual 3 or group counseling assistance to students in the elementary, middle, or 4 high school grades; 5 (ii) "school social worker" shall mean any personnel, licensed and 6 certified by New York state as a school social worker, hired to provide 7 individual or group counseling assistance to students in the elementary, 8 middle, or high school grades; and 9 (iii) "school psychologist" shall mean any personnel, licensed and 10 certified by New York state as a school psychologist, hired to provide 11 individual or group counseling assistance to students in the elementary, 12 middle, or high school grades. 13 § 2. Section 3602 of the education law is amended by adding a new 14 subdivision 19 to read as follows: 15 19. In addition to the apportionments payable to a school district 16 pursuant to this section, the commissioner is hereby authorized to 17 apportion to any school district additional aid pursuant to this subdi- 18 vision for its approved expenditures in the base year for the employment 19 of school counselors, school social workers and/or school psychologists. 20 The commissioner shall annually prescribe a cost allowance for such 21 school counselors, school social workers and/or school psychologists and 22 the approved expenditures shall not exceed such cost allowance. 23 § 3. This act shall take effect immediately.