AN ACT to amend the Indiana Code concerning education and to make an appropriation.
SECTION 1. IC 20-3.1-2-4 IS AMENDED TO READ AS
FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2001]: Sec. 4. "Assessment
program" refers to the
ISTEP assessment program created under
IC 20-10.2-5 and a test approved by the board's plan developed
under IC 20-3.1-7.
SECTION 2. IC 20-3.1-2-5 IS AMENDED TO READ AS FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2001]: Sec. 5. "Assessment test" refers to a test administered to students under the
program created under IC 20-10.2-5.
SECTION 3. IC 20-3.1-2-8 IS AMENDED TO READ AS FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2001]: Sec. 8. "Designated grade level" refers to the grade levels tested under the
program created under IC 20-10.2-5.
SECTION 4. IC 20-3.1-2-10 IS AMENDED TO READ AS FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2001]: Sec. 10.
"Student performance improvement level" refers to a level of
performance measure, used to place a school in academic receivership,
established by the board at a level not less than one (1) standard
deviation below the state average for:
(1) student attendance rates;
(2) remediation rates;
achieving state achievement standards and, if applicable,
performance levels set by the board, on assessment tests;
(C) improvement in student progress toward graduation;
(D) improvement in student attendance rates for the school year;
(E) improvement in individual teacher attendance rates;
(F) improvement in communication with parents and parental involvement in classroom and extracurricular activities; and
(G) other objectives developed by the board.
(3) For the school and the school administrators:
(A) improvement in student
scores results on assessment tests,
aggregated by class and grade;
(B) improvement in the number and percentage of students achieving state achievement standards and, if applicable, performance levels set by the board, on assessment tests, aggregated by class and grade;
(C) improvement in student graduation rates and in progress toward graduation;
(D) improvement in student attendance rates;
(E) management of general fund expenditures per student and total expenditures per student;
(F) improvement in teacher attendance rates; and
(G) other objectives developed by the board.
SECTION 15. IC 20-3.1-9-1 IS AMENDED TO READ AS FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2001]: Sec. 1. (a) IC 20-10.2 applies to the school city. Beginning in the 2004-2005 school year, the composition of any local school improvement committee shall be determined under IC 20-10.2.
(a) (b) The plan developed and implemented by the board under
IC 20-3.1-7 must contain general guidelines for decisions by the
educators in each school to improve student achievement in the school.
(b) (c) The board's plan shall provide for the publication to other
schools within the school city and to the general community those
processes, innovations, and approaches that have led individual schools
to significant improvement in student achievement.
SECTION 16. IC 20-3.1-11-3 IS AMENDED TO READ AS FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2001]: Sec. 3. A staff performance evaluation plan must do the following:
(1) Provide for evaluation of
each employee's the school's and
the school's educators' performance based upon the school's
students' performance improvement level under IC 20-3.1-8-1
including the following:
fails for any two (2) consecutive school years to:
(1) meet expected student performance improvement levels. and
(2) achieve the performance objectives established by the board
for the school under IC 20-3.1-8.
SECTION 19. IC 20-3.1-14-5 IS AMENDED TO READ AS FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2001]: Sec. 5. (a) If a school is placed in academic receivership, the superintendent and the board must take action to raise the school's level of performance.
on each of the
performance indicators listed in section 1 of this chapter.
(b) In addition to the consequences of IC 20-10.2-6, the actions that the superintendent and the board may take to raise the performance of a school in academic receivership include the following:
(1) Shifting resources of the school city to the school.
(2) Changing or removing the school principal, teachers, administrators, or other staff.
(3) Establishing a new educational plan for the school.
(4) Requiring the superintendent or another school city appointee to administer the school until the academic receivership status of the school is removed.
(5) Contracting with a for-profit or nonprofit organization or individual to manage the school.
(6) Closing the school.
(7) Any other management, personnel, or policy changes that the superintendent and board expect in the following school year to:
(A) raise the performance of the school; and
(B) avoid continuing academic receivership status for the school.
(c) The provisions of this chapter, if inconsistent with any other law relating to education, teachers, or common schools, govern.
SECTION 20. IC 20-3.1-15-1 IS AMENDED TO READ AS FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2001]: Sec. 1. To provide the board with the necessary flexibility and resources to carry out this article, the following apply:
(1) The board may eliminate or modify existing policies and create new policies, and alter policies from time to time, subject to this article and the plan developed under IC 20-3.1-7.
IC 20-7.5 does not apply to matters set forth in this article.
The matters set forth in this article may not be the subject of
collective bargaining or discussion under IC 20-7.5.
(3) An exclusive representative certified under IC 20-7.5 to
represent certified employees of the school city, or any other
entity voluntarily recognized by the board as a representative of
employees providing educational services in the schools, may
bargain collectively only concerning salary, wages, and salary and
wage related fringe benefits. The exclusive representative may not
bargain collectively or discuss performance awards under
IC 20-3.1-12. Beginning on July 1, 2001, IC 20-7.5 applies to
the school city; however, the provision of IC 20-7.5-1-5(a) that
requires any items included in the 1972-1973 agreements
between an employer school corporation and an employee
organization to continue to be bargainable does not apply to
the school city.
(4) (3) The board of school commissioners may waive the
following statutes and rules for any school in the school city
without the need for administrative, regulatory, or legislative
(A) The following rules concerning curriculum and instructional time:
511 IAC 6.1-3-4
511 IAC 6.1-5-0.5
511 IAC 6.1-5-1
511 IAC 6.1-5-2.5
511 IAC 6.1-5-3.5
511 IAC 6.1-5-4
(B) The following rules concerning pupil/teacher ratios:
511 IAC 6-2-1(b)(2)
511 IAC 6.1-4-1
(C) The following statutes and rules concerning textbooks, and rules adopted under the statutes:
511 IAC 6.1-5-5
(D) The following rules concerning school principals:
511 IAC 6-2-1(c)(4)
511 IAC 6.1-4-2
(E) 511 IAC 2-2, concerning school construction and remodeling.
(5) (4) Notwithstanding any other law, a school city may do the
corporation are assigned or transferred.
Sec. 6. "Department" refers to the department of education established by IC 20-1-1.1-2.
Sec. 7. "Elementary school" has the meaning set forth in IC 20-10.1-1-15.
Sec. 8. "Governing body" has the meaning set forth in IC 20-10.1-1-5.
Sec. 9. "Organizer" means a group or an entity that:
(1) has been determined by the Internal Revenue Service to be operating under not-for-profit status or has applied for such determination; and
(2) enters into a contract under this article to operate a charter school.
Sec. 10. "Parent" has the meaning set forth in IC 20-1-1.8-8.
Sec. 11. "Proposal" refers to a proposal from an organizer to establish a charter school.
Sec. 12. "Public school" has the meaning set forth in IC 20-10.1-1-2.
Sec. 13. "School corporation" has the meaning set forth in IC 20-10.1-1-1.
Sec. 14. "Secondary school" means a high school (as defined in IC 20-10.1-1-16).
Sec. 15. "Sponsor" means the following:
(1) For a charter school, one (1) of the following:
(A) A governing body.
(B) A state educational institution (as defined in IC 20-12-0.5-1) that offers a four (4) year baccalaureate degree.
(C) The executive (as defined in IC 36-1-2-5) of a consolidated city.
Sec. 16. "Teacher" has the meaning set forth in IC 20-6.1-1-8.
Chapter 2. Description
Sec. 1. A charter school may be established under this article to provide innovative and autonomous programs that do the following:
(1) Serve the different learning styles and needs of public school students.
(2) Offer public school students appropriate and innovative choices.
(3) Afford varied opportunities for professional educators.
(4) Allow public schools freedom and flexibility in exchange for exceptional levels of accountability.
superintendent of public instruction.
Members shall serve a two (2) year term and may be reappointed to the panel upon expiration of their terms.
(d) All decisions of the panel shall be determined by a majority vote of the panel's members.
(e) Upon the request of an organizer, the panel shall meet to consider the organizer's proposal and the sponsor's reasons for rejecting the proposal. The panel must allow the organizer and sponsor to participate in the meeting.
(f) After the panel meets under subsection (d), the panel shall make one (1) of the following three (3) findings and issue the finding to the organizer and the sponsor:
(1) A finding that supports the sponsor's rejection of the proposal.
(2) A finding that:
(A) recommends that the organizer amend the proposal; and
(B) specifies the changes to be made in the proposal if the organizer elects to amend the proposal.
(3) A finding that approves the proposal.
The panel shall issue the finding not later than forty-five (45) days after the panel receives the request for review.
(g) If the panel makes a finding described in subsection (e)(1) the finding is final.
(h) If the panel makes a finding described in subsection (e)(2) the organizer may amend the proposal according to the panel's recommendations and resubmit the proposal directly to the panel.
(i) If the panel makes a finding described in subsection (e)(3) then the proposal is considered conditionally approved. The approval shall be considered final upon the delivery to the panel of written notice from the organizer and an eligible sponsor, as identified in chapter 1, section 14 of this article, that the sponsor has agreed to serve as a sponsor for the proposal approved by the panel.
(j) Proposals approved under this section shall not be counted under any numerical limits placed upon a sponsor or set of sponsors.
Sec. 12. (a) The department shall monitor the number of charter schools approved by universities;
(b) Within six (6) months after twenty (20) charter schools have been approved by universities, the department shall issue a report to the charter school review panel identifying:
performance, including the progress of the charter school
in achieving the academic goals set forth in the charter, at
least one (1) time in each five (5) year period while the
charter is in effect; and
(B) renewal, if the sponsor and the organizer agree to renew the charter.
(7) Specify the grounds for the sponsor to:
(A) revoke the charter before the end of the term for which the charter is granted; or
(B) not renew a charter.
(8) Set forth the methods by which the charter school is held accountable for achieving the educational mission and goals of the charter school, including the following:
(A) Evidence of improvement in assessment measures, including ISTEP and Graduation Qualifying Exam, attendance rates, graduation rates (if appropriate), increased numbers of Core 40 diplomas (if appropriate), and increased numbers of academic honors diplomas (if appropriate).
(B) Evidence of progress toward reaching the educational goals set by the organizer.
(9) Describe the method to be used to monitor the charter school's:
(A) compliance with applicable law; and
(B) performance in meeting targeted educational performance.
(10) Specify that the sponsor and the organizer may amend the charter during the term of the charter by mutual consent and describe the process for amending the charter.
(11) Describe specific operating requirements, including all of the matters set forth in the application for the charter.
(12) Specify a date when the charter school will:
(A) begin school operations; and
(B) have students in attendance at the charter school.
(13) Specify that records of a charter school relating to the school's operation and charter are subject to inspection and copying to the same extent that records of a public school are subject to inspection and copying under IC 5-14-3.
(14) Specify that records provided by the charter school to the department or sponsor that relate to compliance by the operator with the terms of the charter or applicable state or federal laws are subject to inspection and copying in
accordance with IC 5-14-3.
(15) Specify that the charter school is subject to the requirements of IC 5-14-1.5.
Chapter 5. Student Admissions and Enrollment
Sec. 1. Except as provided in this chapter, a nonconversion charter school must be open to any student who resides in Indiana. A student may attend a charter school outside the district in which the student resides if the parent determines that an academic program at the charter school would enhance the student's academic opportunities. If the governing body in which the student resides determines that such a transfer would not improve the student's academic opportunities, the governing body may appeal to the board. Within forty-five (45) days of receiving the appeal, the board shall conduct a hearing and decide whether to uphold or reverse the parent's decision to enroll in the charter school. During the board's consideration, the parents of the student shall be allowed to testify, but the governing body shall have the burden of proof for demonstrating that the charter school does not provide additional or unique academic opportunities that exceed those available at the school corporation.
Sec. 2. Except as provided in this chapter, a conversion charter school must be open to any student residing in the local school corporation. By joint agreement of the sponsor and organizer, a conversion charter school may open its enrollment to students outside of the local school corporation.
Sec. 3. Except as provided in this chapter, a charter school may not establish admission policies or limit student admissions in any manner in which a public school is not permitted to establish admission policies or limit student admissions.
Sec. 4. (a) Except as provided in subsections (b), (c), and (d), a charter school must enroll any eligible student who submits a timely application for enrollment.
(b) This subsection applies if the number of applications for a program, class, grade level, or building exceeds the capacity of the program, class, grade level, or building. If a charter school receives a greater number of applications than there are spaces for students, each timely applicant must be given an equal chance of admission.
(c) A charter school may limit new admissions to the charter school to:
(1) ensure that a student who attends the charter school during a school year may continue to attend the charter
school in subsequent years; and
(2) allow the siblings of a student who attends a charter school to attend the charter school.
(d) This subsection applies to an existing school that converts to a charter school under IC 20-5.5-11. During the school year in which the existing school converts to a charter school, the charter school may limit admission to:
(1) those students who were enrolled in the charter school on the date of the conversion; and
(2) siblings of students described in subdivision (1).
Chapter 6. Employment
Sec. 1. Individuals who work at a charter school are employees of the charter school or of an entity with which the charter school has contracted to provide services.
Sec. 2. Individuals must choose to be teachers at a charter school voluntarily, and a charter school shall voluntarily choose such individuals to be its teachers.
Sec. 3. Employees of a charter school may organize and bargain collectively under IC 20-7.5.
Sec. 4. (a) This section applies to a conversion charter school.
(b) After the conversion, the teachers in a conversion charter school remain part of the bargaining unit of the sponsor and are subject to all the provisions of the collective bargaining agreement.
(c) The governing body, the equivalent body of the conversion charter school, and the exclusive representative may by mutual agreement grant a waiver of a specific provision of the collective bargaining agreement.
(d) Noncertificated employees (as defined in IC 20-7.5-1-2) shall remain in existing bargaining units and are covered under existing collective bargaining agreements.
Sec. 5 (a) An individual who teaches in a charter school must either:
(1) hold a license to teach in a public school in Indiana under IC 20-6.1-3; or
(2) be in the process of obtaining a license to teach in a public school in Indiana under the transition to teaching program set forth in IC 20-6.1-3-11.
(b) An individual described in subsection (a)(2) must complete the transition to teaching program not later than three (3) years after beginning to teach at a charter school.
(c) An individual who provides a service to students in a charter school:
for students with disabilities or staff services for students with
disabilities for the students with disabilities enrolled in the
(3) A proportionate share of funds received under federal or state categorical aid programs for students who are eligible for the federal or state aid enrolled in the charter school.
(c) Not later than the date established by the department for determining average daily membership under IC 21-3-1.6-1.1(d), the organizer shall submit to each governing body a report of the total number and names of students from the governing body's school corporation enrolled in the charter school. Upon verifying the accuracy of the information reported, the governing body shall distribute to the organizer a proportionate share of local support for the students enrolled in the charter school in an amount determined under STEP THREE of the following formula:
STEP ONE: Add the revenues obtained by the school corporation's:
(A) general fund property tax levy; and
(B) general fund auto excise and financial institutions tax.
STEP TWO: Divide the sum determined under STEP ONE by the total number of students enrolled in the school corporation.
STEP THREE: Multiply the quotient determined under STEP TWO by the number of students enrolled in the charter school.
(d) The distribution under subsection (b) shall be made on the same schedule as the schedule on which the school corporation receives the funds.
Sec. 4. (a) Services that a school corporation provides to a charter school, including transportation, may be provided at not more than one hundred three percent (103%) of the actual cost of the services.
(b) This subsection applies to a sponsor that is a state educational institution described in IC 20-5.5-1-14(1)(B). A state educational institution may receive from the organizer of a charter school sponsored by the state educational institution an administrative fee equal to not more than three percent (3%) of the total amount the governing body distributes under sections 3(b)(1) and 3(c) of this chapter.
Sec. 5. An organizer may apply for and accept for a charter school:
(1) independent financial grants; or
statutes listed in section 5 of this chapter, the following do not
apply to a charter school:
(1) Any Indiana statute applicable to a governing body or school corporation.
(2) A rule or guideline adopted by the Indiana state board of education.
(3) A rule or guideline adopted by the professional standards board (established by IC 20-1-1.4-2), except for those rules that assist a teacher in gaining or renewing a standard or advanced license.
(4) A local regulation or policy adopted by a school corporation unless specifically incorporated in the charter.
Sec. 5. The following statutes and rules and guidelines adopted under the following statutes apply to a charter school:
(1) IC 5-11-1-9 (required audits by the state board of accounts).
(2) IC 20-1-1.5 (unified accounting system).
(3) IC 20-1-6 (special education).
(4) IC 20-5-2-7 and IC 20-6.1-3-7.1 (criminal history).
(5) IC 20-5-2-3 (subject to laws requiring regulation by state agencies).
(6) IC 20-6.1-4-15 (void teacher contract when two (2) contracts are signed).
(7) IC 20-6.1-6-11 (nondiscrimination for teacher marital status).
(8) IC 20-6.1-6-13 (teacher freedom of association).
(9) IC 20-6.1-6-15 (school counselor immunity).
(10) For conversion charter schools only, IC 20-6.1-4, IC 20-6.1-5 and IC 20-6.1-6.
(11) IC 20-8.1-3 (compulsory school attendance).
(12) IC 20-8.1-4 (limitations on employment of children).
(13) IC 20-8.1-5.1-13, IC 20-8.1-5.1-15, and IC 20-8.1-5.1-15.5 (student due process and judicial review).
(14) IC 20-8.1-5.1-10 (firearms and deadly weapons).
(15) IC 20-8.1-7 and IC 20-8.1-8 (health and safety measures).
(16) IC 20-8.1-9-3 (exemption from school fees for eligible families and fee reimbursement).
(17) IC 20-8.1-9-5 (notice to parents concerning financial assistance).
(18) IC 20-8.1-12 (reporting of student violations of law).
(19) IC 20-10.1-2-4 and IC 20-10.1-2-6 (patriotic commemorative observances).
existing school into a charter school.
Sec. 4. Only the governing body of the school corporation in which an existing public elementary or secondary school that seeks conversion to a charter school is located may act as the sponsor of the conversion charter school.
SECTION 22. IC 20-6.1-3-11 IS ADDED TO THE INDIANA CODE AS A NEW SECTION TO READ AS FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2002]: Sec. 11. (a) As used in this section, "program" refers to the transition to teaching program established by subsection (b).
(b) The transition to teaching program is established to accomplish the following:
(1) Facilitate the transition into the teaching profession of competent professionals in fields other than teaching.
(2) Allow competent professionals who do not hold a teaching license to earn and be issued a teaching license through participation in and satisfactory completion of the program.
(c) Subject to the requirements of this section, the board shall develop and administer the program. The board shall determine the details of the program that are not included in this section.
(d) Each accredited teacher training school and department shall establish a course of study that constitutes the higher education component of the program. The higher education component required under this subsection must comply with the following requirements:
(1) Include the following study requirements:
(A) For a program participant who seeks to obtain a license to teach in grade 6 through grade 12, up to eighteen (18) credit hours of study or the equivalent that prepare a program participant to meet Indiana standards for teaching in the subject areas corresponding to the area in which the program participant has met the education requirements under subsection (e), unless the program participant demonstrates that the program participant requires fewer credit hours of study to meet Indiana standards for teaching.
(B) For a program participant who seeks to obtain a license to teach in kindergarten through grade 5, twenty-four (24) credit hours of study or the equivalent, which must include at least six (6) credit hours in the teaching of reading, that prepare a program participant to meet Indiana standards for teaching, unless the program
participant demonstrates that the program participant
requires fewer credit hours of study to meet Indiana
standards for teaching.
(2) Focus on the communication of knowledge to students.
(3) Include suitable field or classroom experiences if the program participant does not have teaching experience.
(e) A person who wishes to participate in the program must have one (1) of the following qualifications:
(1) For a program participant who seeks to obtain a license to teach in grade 6 through grade 12, one (1) of the following:
(A) A bachelor's degree or the equivalent with a grade point average of three (3.0) on a four (4.0) scale from an accredited institution of higher education in the subject area that the person intends to teach.
(B) A graduate degree from an accredited institution of higher education in the subject area that the person intends to teach.
(i) a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution of higher education with a grade point average of two and five-tenths (2.5) on a four (4) point scale; and
(ii) five (5) years of professional experience;
in the subject area that the person intends to teach.
(2) For a program participant who seeks to obtain a license to teach in kindergarten through grade 5, one (1) of the following:
(A) A bachelor's degree or the equivalent with a grade point average of three (3.0) on a four (4.0) scale from an accredited institution of higher education.
(i) a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution of higher education with a grade point average of two and five-tenths (2.5) on a four (4.0) point scale; and
(ii) five (5) years of professional experience in an education-related field.
(f) The board shall grant an initial standard license to a program participant who does the following:
(1) Successfully completes the higher education component of the program.
(2) Demonstrates proficiency through a written examination in:
(A) basic reading, writing, and mathematics;
established under Indiana law and, in the case of public vocational
schools or schools for children with disabilities established or
maintained by two (2) or more school corporations, shall refer to such
(b) "Governing body"
shall mean means:
(1) the board or commission charged by law with the responsibility of administering the affairs of the school corporation; or
(2) the body that administers a charter school established under IC 20-5.5.
(c) "School employer" means:
(1) the governing body of each:
(A) school corporation; or
(B) charter school established under IC 20-5.5; and
(2) any person or persons authorized to act for the governing body of the school employer in dealing with its employees.
(d) "Superintendent" shall mean:
(1) the chief administrative officer of any:
(A) school corporation, or
(B) charter school established under IC 20-5.5; or
(2) any person or persons designated by the officer or by the governing body to act in the officer's behalf in dealing with school employees.
(e) "School employee" means any full-time certificated person in the employment of the school employer. A school employee shall be considered full time even though the employee does not work during school vacation periods, and accordingly works less than a full year. There shall be excluded from the meaning of school employee supervisors, confidential employees, employees performing security work and noncertificated employees.
(f) "Certificated employee" means a person:
(1) whose contract with the school corporation requires that
the person hold a license or permit from the state board of
education or a commission thereof as provided in IC 20-6.1; or
(2) who is employed as a teacher by a charter school established under IC 20-5.5.
(g) "Noncertificated employee" means any school employee whose employment is not dependent upon the holding of a license or permit as provided in IC 20-6.1.
(h) "Supervisor" means any individual who has:
(1) authority, acting for the school corporation, to hire, transfer, suspend, lay off, recall, promote, discharge, assign, reward, or
discipline school employees;
(2) responsibility to direct school employees and adjust their grievances; or
(3) responsibility to effectively recommend the action described in
subsections subdivisions (1) through (2);
that is not of a merely routine or clerical nature but requires the use of independent judgment. The term includes superintendents, assistant superintendents, business managers and supervisors, directors with school corporation-wide responsibilities, principals and vice principals, and department heads who have responsibility for evaluating teachers.
(i) "Confidential employee" means a school employee whose unrestricted access to confidential personnel files or whose functional responsibilities or knowledge in connection with the issues involved in dealings between the school corporation and its employees would make the confidential employee's membership in a school employee organization incompatible with the employee's official duties.
(j) "Employees performing security work" means any school employee whose primary responsibility is the protection of personal and real property owned or leased by the school corporation or who performs police or quasi-police powers.
(k) "School employee organization" means any organization which has school employees as members and one (1) of whose primary purposes is representing school employees in dealing with their school employer, and includes any person or persons authorized to act on behalf of such organizations.
(l) "Exclusive representative" means the school employee organization which has been certified for the purposes of this chapter by the board or recognized by a school employer as the exclusive representative of the employees in an appropriate unit as provided in section 10 of this chapter, or the person or persons duly authorized to act on behalf of such representative.
(m) "Board" means the Indiana education employment relations board provided by this chapter.
(n) "Bargain collectively" means the performance of the mutual obligation of the school employer and the exclusive representative to meet at reasonable times to negotiate in good faith with respect to items enumerated in section 4 of this chapter and to execute a written contract incorporating any agreement relating to such matters. Such obligation shall not include the final approval of any contract concerning these or any other items. Agreements reached through collective bargaining are binding as a contract only if ratified by the governing body of the school corporation and the exclusive
representative. The obligation to bargain collectively does not require
the school employer or the exclusive representative to agree to a
proposal of the other or to make a concession to the other.
(o) "Discuss" means the performance of the mutual obligation of the school corporation through its superintendent and the exclusive representative to meet at reasonable times to discuss, to provide meaningful input, to exchange points of view, with respect to items enumerated in section 5 of this chapter. This obligation shall not, however, require either party to enter into a contract, to agree to a proposal, or to require the making of a concession. A failure to reach an agreement on any matter of discussion shall not require the use of any part of the impasse procedure, as provided in section 13 of this chapter. Neither the obligation to bargain collectively nor to discuss any matter shall prevent any school employee from petitioning the school employer, the governing body, or the superintendent for a redress of the employee's grievances either individually or through the exclusive representative, nor shall either such obligation prevent the school employer or the superintendent from conferring with any citizen, taxpayer, student, school employee, or other person considering the operation of the schools and the school corporation.
(p) "Strike" means concerted failure to report for duty, willful absence from one's position, stoppage of work, or abstinence in whole or in part from the full, faithful, and proper performance of the duties of employment, without the lawful approval of the school employer, or in any concerted manner interfering with the operation of the school employer for any purpose.
(q) "Deficit financing" with respect to any budget year shall mean expenditures in excess of money legally available to the employer.
SECTION 24. IC 20-10.2-2-3.5 IS ADDED TO THE INDIANA CODE AS A NEW SECTION TO READ AS FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2001]: Sec. 3.5. "Charter school" refers to a public school created and operating under IC 20-5.5.
SECTION 25. IC 20-10.2-3-1.5 IS ADDED TO THE INDIANA CODE AS A NEW SECTION TO READ AS FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2001]: Sec. 1.5. (a) This section applies to a charter school.
(b) A charter entered under IC 20-5.5-4 may be used as a charter school's three (3) year strategic and continuous school improvement and achievement plan.
SECTION 26. IC 20-10.2-6-1, AS ADDED BY P.L.221-1999, SECTION 13, IS AMENDED TO READ AS FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2001]: Sec. 1. This chapter does not apply to the following: