Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HB5000
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Full Text of HB5000  95th General Assembly



State of Illinois
2007 and 2008


Introduced , by Rep. Cynthia Soto


New Act
30 ILCS 105/5.708 new

    Creates the Children's Low-cost Laptop Act. Requires the State Board of education to establish a procedure and develop criteria for the administration of a low-cost laptop pilot project whereby low-cost laptop computers are provided to each student, teacher, and relevant administrator in a participating elementary school and the use of open-source educational software and computer skills training is implemented. Sets forth program and reporting requirements, including the requirement that the pilot program last for a period of at least 2 years. Establishes the Elementary Students' Low-cost Laptop Fund. Sets a repeal date for the Act of August 31, 2011. Amends the State Finance Act to create the Fund. Effective August 31, 2008.

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HB5000 LRB095 18464 RAS 44550 b

1     AN ACT concerning education.
2     Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
3 represented in the General Assembly:
4     Section 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the
5 Children's Low-cost Laptop Act.
6     Section 5. Policy and purpose. The General Assembly finds
7 that the decreasing cost of computer technology makes it
8 possible today to equip more children than ever before with
9 21st century learning tools. The dramatic expansion of low-cost
10 computing options and the worldwide reliance on computer
11 technology for commerce, education, information, and social
12 interaction makes it ever more important to introduce computing
13 skills to students at an early age. Accordingly, the State
14 Board of Education shall by rule establish a pilot project to
15 provide a low-cost laptop computer to each student, teacher,
16 and relevant administrator in a participating elementary
17 school and implement the use of open-source educational
18 software and computer skills training in order to improve
19 academic achievement and the progress measures listed in
20 subsection (a) of Section 20 in this Act.
21     Section 10. Definitions. In this Act:
22     "Low-cost laptop" means a portable personal computer



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1 suitable for use among elementary school-aged children, under
2 $400 in initial cost.
3     "State Board" means the State Board of Education.
4     Section 15. Pilot project; Elementary Students' Low-cost
5 Laptop Fund.
6     (a) The State Board shall establish a procedure and develop
7 criteria for the administration of a low-cost laptop pilot
8 project. The pilot project shall be for a period of at least 2
9 years. In administering the pilot project, the State Board
10 shall:
11         (1) select participating elementary schools;
12         (2) define the conditions for the distribution and use
13     of laptop computers and other technologies;
14         (3) purchase and distribute laptop computers and other
15     technologies;
16         (4) enter into contracts as necessary to implement the
17     pilot project;
18         (5) monitor local pilot project implementation; and
19         (6) conduct a final evaluation of the pilot project.
20     (b) The Elementary Students' Low-Cost Laptop Fund is
21 created as a special fund in the State treasury. All money in
22 this Fund shall be used, subject to appropriation, by the State
23 Board for the pilot project. To implement the pilot project,
24 the State Board may use any funds appropriated by the General
25 Assembly for the purposes of the pilot project, as well as any



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1 gift, grant, or donation given for the pilot project. The State
2 Board may solicit and accept a gift, grant, or donation of any
3 kind from any source, including from a foundation, private
4 entity, governmental entity, or institution of higher
5 education, for the implementation of the pilot project. Funds
6 for the pilot project may not be used for the construction of a
7 building or other facility. The State Board shall use pilot
8 project funds for the following:
9         (1) low-cost laptop computers;
10         (2) equipment, including batteries, power cords, or
11     other software and hardware back-ups; and
12         (3) the hiring of technical support staff to administer
13     training for participating teachers.
14     The State Board may not allocate more than $100 million for
15 the pilot project. The pilot project may be implemented only if
16 sufficient funds are available under this Section for that
17 purpose.
18     Section 20. Program participation requirements.
19     (a) A school may apply to the State Board for the
20 establishment of a low-cost laptop pilot project for the entire
21 school or for a particular grade or group of classrooms in the
22 school.
23     The State Board shall select up to 300 schools to
24 participate in the pilot project. At least one-third of the
25 selected schools shall be located in the City of Chicago; at



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1 least one-third shall be located in the area that makes up the
2 counties of DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry, Will, and that portion
3 of Cook County that is located outside of the City of Chicago;
4 and at least one-third shall be located in the remainder of the
5 State.
6     The State Board shall select the participating districts
7 and schools for the pilot project based on each district's or
8 school's need for the pilot project. In selecting participants,
9 the State Board shall consider each school's:
10         (1) free and reduced lunch eligible student
11     population;
12         (2) access to educational technology resources;
13         (3) rate of satisfactory performance on standardized
14     tests;
15         (4) readiness to incorporate technology into its
16     classrooms;
17         (5) availability of technology support staff; and
18         (6) planned methods of measuring the progress of the
19     pilot project.
20     (b) Each participating school shall establish a low-cost
21 laptop committee to help implement the project. The school
22 board of a participating school shall appoint individuals to
23 the committee. The committee may be composed of the following:
24         (1) educators;
25         (2) administrators;
26         (3) community leaders;



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1         (4) parents; and
2         (5) any other individual the school board finds
3     appropriate.
4     In districts with multiple participating schools, separate
5 committees for each school must be formed. Each committee shall
6 develop a low-cost laptop usage plan that outlines how the
7 laptops should be used in the participating school. The
8 committee shall consider (i) problems in the school that could
9 be improved through the low-cost laptops and (ii) the
10 capabilities of available low-cost laptops and (iii) the
11 self-directed nature of laptop learning.
12     The committee shall present the low-cost laptop usage plan
13 to the school board at least semi-annually for the life of the
14 project.
15     Section 25. Reporting.
16     (a) The school board of each school participating in the
17 pilot project shall send an annual progress report to the State
18 Board no later than August 1 of each year that the school is
19 participating in the pilot project. The report must include the
20 project's effect on:
21         (1) academic progress of students who are
22     participating in the pilot project, as measured by
23     performance on assessment instruments;
24         (2) student progress in schools or classrooms
25     participating in the pilot project as compared with student



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1     progress in schools or classrooms not participating;
2         (3) student performance on assessment instruments
3     required by the State Board;
4         (4) school cost savings on textbook or other purchases
5     replaced by laptop abilities;
6         (5) attendance rates;
7         (6) teacher performance and retention;
8         (7) communications among students, teachers, parents,
9     and administrators;
10         (8) parental involvement in education;
11         (9) community involvement and support for the school;
12     and
13         (10) student proficiency in technologies or "computer
14     literacy".
15     (b) Each student participating in the pilot project may
16 retain the wireless laptop computer provided under the pilot
17 project as long as the student is enrolled in a participating
18 school.
19     (c) After the expiration of the pilot project, the State
20 Board shall review the project based on the annual reports the
21 State Board receives from the school board of participating
22 school districts.
23     Section 30. Repeal. This Act is repealed on August 31,
24 2011.



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1     Section 90. The State Finance Act is amended by adding
2 Section 5.708 as follows:
3     (30 ILCS 105/5.708 new)
4     Sec. 5.708. The Elementary Students' Low-cost Laptop Fund.
5 This Section is repealed on August 31, 2011.
6     Section 99. Effective date. This Act takes effect August
7 31, 2008.