(1) The superintendent of public instruction, in collaboration with the state board of education, shall develop and implement approval criteria and a process for approving online providers; a process for monitoring and if necessary rescinding the approval of courses or programs offered by an online provider; and an appeals process. The criteria and processes for multidistrict online providers shall be adopted by rule by December 1, 2009.
(2) When developing the approval criteria, the superintendent of public instruction shall require that providers offering online courses or programs have accreditation, or are candidates for accreditation, through the Northwest accreditation commission or another national, regional, or state accreditation program listed by the office of the superintendent of public instruction. In addition to other criteria, the approval criteria shall include the degree of alignment with state academic standards and require that all teachers be certificated in accordance with Washington state law. When reviewing online providers that offer high school courses, the superintendent of public instruction shall assure that the courses offered by the provider are eligible for high school credit. However, final decisions regarding whether credit meets the school district's graduation requirements shall remain the responsibility of the school districts.
(3) Initial approval of online providers by the superintendent of public instruction shall be for four years. The superintendent of public instruction shall develop a process for the renewal of approvals and for rescinding approvals based on noncompliance with approval requirements. Any multidistrict online provider that was approved by the digital learning commons or accredited by the Northwest association of accredited schools before July 26, 2009, and that meets the teacher certification requirements of subsection (2) of this section, is exempt from the initial approval process under this section until August 31, 2012, but must comply with the process for renewal of approvals and must comply with approval requirements.
(4) The superintendent of public instruction shall make the first round of decisions regarding approval of multidistrict online providers by April 1, 2010. The first round of decisions regarding approval of online providers that are not multidistrict online providers shall be made by April 1, 2013. Thereafter, the superintendent of public instruction shall make annual approval decisions no later than November 1st of each year.
(5) The superintendent of public instruction shall establish an online learning advisory committee within existing resources that shall provide advice to the superintendent regarding the approval criteria, major components of the web site, the model school district policy, model agreements, and other related matters. The committee shall include a representative of each of the following groups: Private and public online providers, parents of online students, accreditation organizations, educational service districts, school principals, teachers, school administrators, school board members, institutions of higher education, and other individuals as determined by the superintendent. Members of the advisory committee shall be selected by the superintendent based on nominations from statewide organizations, shall serve three-year terms, and may be reappointed. The superintendent shall select the chair of the committee.
[2013 2nd sp.s. c 18 § 505; 2011 1st sp.s. c 34 § 6; 2009 c 542 § 3.]
Application—Enforcement of laws protecting health and safety—2013 2nd sp.s. c 18:
See note following RCW 28A.600.022
Finding—Intent—2011 1st sp.s. c 34:
See note following RCW 28A.232.010